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Happy Birthday!

Continuing my journey to ensure I can capably ice my friends wedding cake next year, I undertook my first attempt at fully fondant icing a large round cake.

The biggest challenge for me on this is finding enough space in the ridiculously small kitchen I am currently using to roll out the icing to a sufficient size… Bearing this in mind, I have actually bought a roll up icing mat so that I can ice without making too much mess on the dining room table… all purchased from a great website for cake decorators Cake Craft Shop – I can tell I am getting old now I am more interested in purchasing cake decorating tools than I am clothes or shoes… well maybe not shoes!!

All things considered, it didn’t go too badly… a few little cracks on the edge (due to rolling the icing too thin as I didn’t have enough) but nothing I can’t overcome… and all were easily covered by some blue stars! Unfortunately the wedding cake won’t be able to look like that… 😉

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Food, glorious meatballs…

On Monday I tried for the first time a restaurant specialising in meatballs on Clerkenwell Road.  A relatively specific type of food, but tasty nonetheless! Meatballs is a restaurant in the Quality Chop house and offers a range of meatballs (beef/pork/lamb/chicken/vegetables) with different sauces and a range of carb based sides to go with them (mash, pearl barley risotto, spaghetti etc). Reasonably priced and decent portion sizes – I think i’ll be coming back! Also, it introduced me to pearl barley risotto which I really really enjoyed, so something i’ll be adding to my next shopping list!

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It’s soup time!

You can tell winter is here when a) there is a queue for the microwave at work during lunch and b) it is made up mainly of soup!

I love soup and yes the supermarkets now stock a massive range, but there is something to be said for creating your own bubbling pot of lovely homemade soup! One of my colleagues has today come in with a homemade soup that epitomises homemade soup creation – it has a bit of everything she had at home – bacon, potatoes, carrots, onion, tinned tomatoes, pasta! It looks delicious and is certainly more appetising than the tomato and mascarpone soup I have in front of me!

It might even spur me into action to make my favourite soup – Spanish Chorizo and Chickpea – another Jamie Oliver great!

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A great Thai feast

One of my best friends is heading off round the world with her fiance at the end of the week and when they return (for their wedding) they are planning to settle in a different part of the country, so not only am I not going to see her for the best part of 5 months, it also means the end of our after work drinks/shopping/dinners which makes me sad :-(.
So on Monday we went to quite possibly our favourite Thai (if not all cuisine) restaurant in London.

Thai Aubergine – round the back of Kings Cross – is a tiny Thai restaurant that we found as it is part of the Taste card and in a convenient location given we both work in the area but live at different ends of London. The food is delicious and with the 50% off that Taste Card offers a real bargain. It has a really authentic feel and the staff are as happy with you popping in for a quick meal, collecting a takeaway or sitting and putting the world to rights over a bottle of wine or too.

If you are ever in the area or just want a really good Thai meal, this place comes highly recommended!

Hopefully when Sarah returns from her travels and has mastered the art of Thai cookery (as she is going to Thailand) – she’ll be cooking me equally delicious meals when I visit her!