Comfort

Samgyetang, the Korean chicken soup that warms you up from inside

Samgyetang, the Korean chicken soup that warms you up from inside

 

Sweat dripping down smiling faces, the old and the young standing side by side, chatting. One woman flips her hair, bobs her head back and closes her eyes – an expression of deep satisfaction spreads over her face. The noise level is high, but the happiness is greater – if only for a short while. People have gathered, as if at a train station, inside a bank, any random bank. The air conditioner is blowing, the cool air tickles the woman’s face, she lets out a sigh.

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Cream tea in the beautiful Richmond Park, at Pembroke Lodge

Cream tea in the beautiful Richmond Park, at Pembroke Lodge

 

If you’re looking for a nice day out, surrounded by trees, uncut grassy fields, woven paths AND a classic cream tea, look no further than Pembroke Lodge. The Grade II listed Georgian mansion (that’s property talk for buildings considered nationally important, with extra legal protection) in the beautiful and vast Richmond Park in the London Borough of Richmond Upon Thames, is a local favourite for a catch-up in serene surroundings.

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Beef Stroganoff: the recipe and the history

Beef Stroganoff: the recipe and the history

 

This originally Russian dish is typically made from thinly sliced beef, taken from a tender cut of meat such as fillet, since it needs to be the kind of lean meat that can be sautéed easily, which other cuts of beef make it hard or practically impossible to do. It is sautéed in butter with mushrooms and onions and in the final step combined with sour cream to be served over a starch such as potatoes, rice or noodles.

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Swedish Falukorv Stroganoff: the recipe and the history

Swedish Falukorv Stroganoff: the recipe and the history

 

Here it is, the first recipe posted on the blog! Who would have thought it would be a Swedish one? Certainly not me, since it was only a little over two months ago that I set foot in Sweden for the first time. We went there to spend time with friends over Easter, but ended up with plenty new food discoveries (I’m not gonna lie and tell you that I hadn’t planned to seek them out anyway..).

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Xiao long bao – dumplings filled with soup

Xiao long bao – dumplings filled with soup

 

As with many of my culinary discoveries, it was New York which introduced me to xiǎolóng bāo (小笼包). And my Chinese friends who brought me to the restaurants where they were freshly made. I’m sure for anyone who remembers their first xiao long bao experience and for those of you who have yet to discover the joy of XLB, the unsuspecting, delicious, soul-warming soup inside this bite-sized pleated dumpling is the most memorable. Like a Kinder surprise egg the highlight is hidden and wrapped inside, and although you may already know the surprise, you are nonetheless excited about it and thrilled by the flavour-intense soup that comes gushing out once you bite a little hole into the slightly stretchy yet thin and delicate dumpling skin.

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Twice-cooked pork lusciousness at Sichuan Folk

Twice-cooked pork lusciousness at Sichuan Folk

 

Sichuan Folk, just off Brick Lane and opposite the Old Truman Brewery which hosts the sundayupmarket (mainly food stalls representing different countries’ cuisines) every Sunday, is a Sichuan restaurant worth visiting for their double-cooked pork dish (you can also find a good version of it over at Chilli Cool). (more…)

Decent sushi in a decent city – Maruyasu in Düsseldorf, Germany

Decent sushi in a decent city – Maruyasu in Düsseldorf, Germany

 

Düsseldorf, the capital of the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia, is an international business and financial centre, renowned for its fashion and trade fairs and known for its academy of arts as well as its Japanese community, one of the largest in Europe and 11,000 strong. It comes as no surprise then that one would be able to find decent sushi – but to know where to find it, that is the key! (more…)

Heinemann Konditorei (cake shop), beloved tradition: Baumkuchen and champagne truffles

Heinemann Konditorei (cake shop), beloved tradition: Baumkuchen and champagne truffles

 

If you ever make it to the state of North-Rhine Westphalia in Germany, any one of the Heinemann Konditoreien (cake shops) is definitely worth a stop, if only (or rather especially) for some Mitbringsel (small presents you bring with you from a trip). (more…)

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