Friday, September 24, 2010

Mission Thanksgiving!

So, this year I'm hosting a Thanksgiving dinner for my parents and my new UK family.   The two groups have not yet met so this will be quite a gathering!

This is a holiday that will only be the "norm" for about 25% of us so I think I can get away with making a few rookie mistakes as I prepare my first meal for this important US holiday...and the only critical people will be my parents whom I think would compliment anything I made.  You see,  I could barely boil water 2 years ago and now I pride myself on my cooking.  I think (hope) they will be proud!

The restaurant, coffee shop etc. reviews will be back soon but for now...I'm so excited to announce my first side dish that will be prepared for my Thanksgiving festivities at my flat for my guests!  I cooked the Mario Batali "Babbo" version of Brussel Sprouts & Green Beans with pancetta and have to say....they were pretty darn good.  I thought about adding them to my Thanksgiving menu and my boyfriend said mid meal...

"You should make these for Thanksgiving"

It's official....they made the cut and are IN!!!!  Now,  I just need to figure out how to cook a turkey :-/

Thursday, September 2, 2010


Last weekend was one of the best in London thus far.  I got to enjoy some amazing food, friends and good times at a wedding for our friends Claire and James and also got to visit the Cake Britain EDIBLE art exhibition.  This is the worlds only exhibit that is eaten at the end of its two day run.   Visitors were invited back on Sunday to enjoy the taste of what, until then, were just beautiful (and sometimes strange) sculptures made of confection.  
I think my favorite cake of the day was "Captain Fairtrade",  likely named for the charity which the exhibit supported.  All donations went to support The Fairtrade Foundation, a wonderful organization supporting farmers in developing countries obtain fair trading terms in an industry that is challenging for the weaker, smaller, farmers.
Captain Fairtrade was designed by pop artist Peter Fowler and executed by Michelle Wibowo,  cake designer and winner of many cake decorating contests.  It is about a foot tall and made from sponge cake. It also had glowing eyes which I thought was very cool...not sure you could eat those!!!  Of all of the cakes at the exhibit,  I think this design was the cleanest and most polished.  See her website here:

Honorable mention would have to go to the mini hamburger cupcakes complete with a side of fries...all edible!  I think the burgers reminded me of home so I'm biased!   They were created by the cupcake team, "Crumbs and Doilies" who deliver their treats all over South West London.  This team reminds me of "Baked by Melissa" in New York as they serve mini cupcakes as she did all over Manhattan...ahhhh memories.  They teamed up with artist Jon Burgerman (ironically his real name) to make these little fun treats for the show.  I thought they were cute.  See more of their stuff here.

I would recommend the exhibit but, as I mentioned,  the cakes were eaten on Sunday!!!!   Next year,  I'm campaigning to get the Duff Goldman and his "Ace of Cakes" team THIS is how you do cake!  I'm just sayin....