Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Catching Up ...

Time flies and I've got behind ... that's because I've been far too busy eating and drinking!

Thurs 9 Mar 2006

Night out in Plush (York Place) for a birthday bash. As with many of the smarter bars the beer selection is less than riveting here, although at least they had Staropramen as an acceptable draught lager alternative! The little nibblies provided were also quite acceptable - including little spring rolls, little prawns and various bits and bobs on types of biscuits. As this was a private party I couldn't really get a feel for the bar proper - although what I did see of it was enough to ensure that I would be going back as a member of the general public to check it out properly. When we left, around 10pm, the main bar was relatively quiet and had some live light jazz playing - all quite civilised. I'll have to leave more detailed comments for another visit.

After leaving Plush we headed across town to the normally very reliable Bar 88 on Eastgate. Unfortunately, it seems that it's changed hands or management. Our vegetable spring rolls were a complete disappointment (sorry - if there was some vegetable in them it was doing a good job of hiding - the spring rolls at Plush were miles better!) and while Andy enjoyed his seafood fried rice I found my pad thai altogether pretty boring ... no chilli, stringy, tough noodles ... no, no, no - won't be going back again!

Fri 10 Mar 2006

No particularly hot food action tonight ... a quick visit to North after work where I enjoyed a Coopers Sparkling (the price has gone up by the looks of things ... grr - £3 to £3.20 - not sure how they justify this increase!) followed by a Fruh Kolsch - which was actually a very refreshing beer. However, I was incredibly disappointed because at some point someone decided it was a brilliant idea to film some kind of promotional material for some Italian liqueur called Tuaca in North on a Friday night - WHAT? Obviously the bar is so huge it can cater for its usual crowd as well as massive cameras and boom mikes and even more obviously a bar whose strap line is "It's Official - we love beer" is really going to appeal to liqueur drinking types ... Scampered out quite rapidly really! Went back to Andy's and made gyoza but they were a bit disappointing compared to the batch over Christmas ...

Sat 11 Mar 2006

A huge cooking day today ... well, if I'd been organised it would have been ...

I revisited the salt crusted prawns made a couple of weeks ago ... this time, I did it my way, though. I found some truly monstrous green prawns in the Leeds City Market, sold by the fishmongers S Meyer. These babies were headless and were being sold for £1.99 per 100g. I bought 8 and it set me back £8.20 which means the average prawn was weighing about 50g!

Anyway, having got these babies home I gutted them and removed their legs. I blanched them in salted boiling water until they turned pink and then quickly drained and refreshed them. When they had cooled down I shelled them, leaving on their tails. I then dusted them in a cornflour and coarsely ground salt mixture and set them to one side.

I then heated some vegetable oil and chilli oil in a fry pan and added to this crushed chopped garlic, one finely sliced birdseye chilli and grated in a good inch or so of ginger. Gave this all a quick fry up and added a good grinding of salt, before adding in the prawns and making sure I got them all coated. I then added a pile of sliced spring onions and a good splash of shaoshing wine which I cooked off (keep the pan nice and hot through all of this).

Since the prawns were so monstrous and this was a starter I served them on their own, though for a more substantial meal you could easily serve with rice. Definitely serve with extra salt on the side (the good flaky stuff!) - even though you use quite a lot of salt in the cooking a bit of extra salty crunch is always good! I was a tiny bit heavy handed on the chilli, which was a shame as I ended up serving this with an excellent gruner veltliner (Austrian grape), which would have been a perfect pairing, had the chilli been less overwhelming - though the amount of chilli is really personal preference anyway!

Coming up ... Italian style roast pork, chocolate fondant, and an afternoon tea which morphed into lunch at Anthony's at Flannels ... oh - and some pictures!
Stumble Upon ToolbarStumble It!


Post a Comment

<< Home