Posts Tagged ‘beetroot’

The end of the birthday fun

Saturday saw the last in a line of birthday celebrations which have been very fancy indeed. And this was no less fancy.

We went to the Savoy for fancy lunch and to maintain the illusion that we are type of people who lunch in luxury.

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I had the set lunch menu, which I started with a pheasant and beetroot salad…

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It was small, but anything bigger would have taken up the space I was preserving for dessert.

Next I had a Jerusalem artichoke risotto (a big step for me as I never eat things with stupid names, eg, celeriac, artichoke, etc). It had trompette mushrooms, which threw me. What is a ‘trompette’ mushroom? Trumpet mushroom? Well, anyway, they looked like shitake mushrooms to me and were tasty.

As soon as the plate was set down, I caught a whiff of something? Truffle?! I hadn’t remembered seeing truffle on the menu though. I lifted the plate inelegantly to my nose. There was definitely truffle in my risotto! And it looked like there were some shavings of black truffle in it too. It was delicious.

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The dessert choices were pretty good, with a banana and blackberry Eton mess or a lemon cheesecake with ginger ice cream vying for my attention. Eventually though, sticking to the Italian theme which has dictated my food choices since my return from Rome, I went for a rosemary panna cotta with caramelised plums. (Is panna cotta Italian? It sounds a bit Italian.)

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After finishing dinner and congratulating ourselves that none of the children in our party had spilled/smashed/thrown/broken anything, we went for a wander. We found an amazing little chocolate shop, where a huge vat of melted chocolate was being stirred and delicate individual chocolates were being prepared.

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You can buy slabs of pure chocolate there too, should you wish….

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Or you could wander to one of the designer jewellery shops and purchase a little necklace, if the fancy takes you…

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You could just see it and impulse buy it, you know. Sometimes you just HAVE to get something because it’s pretty. You could probably get it with whatever change you have lying about in your pocket.

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Yes, you read that right. The necklace. The necklace in the previous picture. Is £42,000! Forty two. Thousand. THOUSAND. Pounds.

I did think about whether to get it but then I remembered my food processor broke the other day so I’m saving up for a new one of those.

And now, after days of piggybacking onto birthday celebrations which aren’t even mine, it’s back to reality. I have work in a few hours. I do not have a Michelin star chef making a mid-morning snack for me. Nor will anyone open a napkin and lay it in my lap when I sit down. I guess I’ll make a cup of tea and read a cookbook or something…..

My love affair with Waitrose

It’s partly because of the cool rush of air that greets you as you enter. It’s partly because of the amount of things that have ‘organic’ written on the label. It’s also kind of because there’s a whole aisle dedicated to yoghurt. Actually, there are plenty of reasons why I have a long-standing love affair with Waitrose. Let me just tell you about what happened last time I went to see the love of my life.

My shopping list had these things on it:
Shampoo
Conditioner
Asparagus
Something for dinner
Sugar
Eggs

Let’s enter my head to see what actually happened.

Oo! The cool air rush. Mmm. Nice. Ok, grab a trolley. I wonder if people think I’m a grown-up cause I’ve got a trolley. Hee hee. I love pretending to be a grown up. Oo! There’s an offer on something! Raspberries! I’ll just get one box. And another. Ok, I’ll get four! I can make jam with them. I love making jam….

And so it starts. It’s one of those days. One of those days where I have to have one of everything.

Let me get some bananas for banana bread. And a few aubergines. They’re always good. I guess I’ll make a parmigiana with them. So I need tomatoes. I’ll get some strawberries on the way to the tomatoes. Beetroot! Oo, I like raw beetroot shaved into a salad with smoked salmon and rocket. Laura! Calm down! You don’t need everything! Yes I do, I NEEEEED the beetroot. I need it. Ok then, just get it and shut up. Yesssss, beetroot in trolley. Do I need to stop at the fresh pasta section? Not really, but I like lingering there and looking at it and pretending I’m in Italy. Right, moving on, my favourite sections are coming up. The meat and fish counters. I can feel my eyes lighting up. O no! Here I am in front of the counter ordering tons of fish, before I can stop myself. I’m walking away with a bit of everything, scallops, prawns, squid, mahi-mahi, tilapia, salmon, rainbow trout. What on earth did I do that for?! When can I possibly eat all this fish?! O well. Down the chicken aisle. Oo, what to get? The turkey’s on offer, or some duck? Don’t be ridiculous, why would I get a duck for normal dinner at home. I must learn to distinguish when fancy dinner is required and when to just do normal dinner. Ok, I’ve actually got enough fish to feed an army, so maybe I don’t need any chicken. And so to the yoghurt aisle. Too much choice! Too exciting! The nice Waitrose yoghurts made with Jersey cream are amazing. I’ll get one of each flavour. There are about ten flavours. I don’t need them all but I can’t stop myself. And some of the passionfruit flavour. Mmm. And a large vanilla one. Mmm… And some of the Greek stuff. Omygoodness, there is NO way I’ll be able to get all this home. Ah well, keep going. Skip the freezer aisle. Next aisle, tins and cooking stuff. Actually, I’ve run out of ground ginger and oregano so let me get some of those. Next, to the juice, yessss, they’ve got that iced peach tea, two please. Round to the crackers and cereal aisle. I need oats and I’ll get some crackers too, they’re good to have in. Next aisle, need chocolate for making flapjacks. Eggs, yes please. Sugar, two types please. Flour, yes please. I need hazelnuts too actually. I can feel this is becoming slightly crazy. I can’t stop though. Next aisle, spend a while deliberating over which shampoo and conditioner are most suited to my hair. Last aisle, do I need anymore washing up liquid or clothes softener? Foil? Cling film? No I think I’m fine.

And so I emerge from the last aisle, hurrying a little as I try to stop putting things in my trolley. Ridiculous. I didn’t even have everything e.g. parmesan for the parmigiana, salmon or rocket for the beetroot salad I planned, the asparagus that had originally been on my list, etc. I practically ran to the tills, like a guilty lover, trying to pretend the rendezvous had never happened. But it had. I had three heavy shopping bags to prove it. It was one of my silliest shopping trips ever. How much do you reckon I spent? Have a guess and I’ll reveal the answer tomorrow.