Category Archives: May 2014

Part 2 – The Fastest talking chef in the sud ouest

IMG_0616See part one first…. Pottering around in our new home, assessing jobs to do we lost track of time but suddenly thought we had best go round to the village restaurant to make our dinner reservation. We reasoned that it probably wasn’t necessary but we hadn’t got any real cooking implements so we wanted to secure our supper and we hoped, find that the place was a little gem. Continue reading Part 2 – The Fastest talking chef in the sud ouest

Zippin’ up my boots, goin’ back to my roots…



Franco Manca

I love Brixton, my family have come from there for generations and it’s a great place (always has been, in spite of popular belief) so we opted for the Brixton Market Row branch of this small chain for our Thursday supper. The market place is lively and a bit of a foodie heaven allowing us to make mental notes of future venues for our Thursday suppers. Continue reading Zippin’ up my boots, goin’ back to my roots…

The church bell tolls thrice, a breeze catches the long meadow grass in a whisper…


I look to the deck chair where my friend snoozes…no sign of life. The gentle hum of a distant tractor and Mata Hari struggles upright, blinking, we stare at each other in the bright sunlight, no need for words, we know what comes next. Continue reading The church bell tolls thrice, a breeze catches the long meadow grass in a whisper…

Rainy days and Mondays…don’t always get me down


Rain seems to turn a bank holiday into a ‘normal’ Monday without the usual warm and fuzzy feeling…it often becomes a day for doing chores, clearing out cupboards, getting rid of old paperwork…the dreaded bank account, washing, ironing, you get the picture. Occasionally it’s for pyjamas, freshly laundered with thick socks, the addition of a comfy sofa, a cuppa and a film (or in my case a box set of something I’ve seen 100 times like The West Wing or The Soprano’s). Continue reading Rainy days and Mondays…don’t always get me down

London has voted

I like to exercise my democratic right – I’m not saying that doesn’t occasionally blow up in my face though.

I’ve always felt conscious, prickly even about the late stage in history that provided the female vote in this country, less than 100 years of female emancipation in the UK. Just one good long lifetime ago, I’d have been denied that right. Those brave women did me a huge service and I will never forget it nor will I ever fail to exercise the right they gifted me. Equality may be a way off yet but at least I don’t have to throw myself in front of horse – someone did that for me and I am deeply grateful. Continue reading London has voted

The fastest talking chef in le Sud Ouest…


Part One

The eve of the Rugby world cup final in 2003, Rocket and I have flown into Toulouse on the late evening flight, we are embarking on an emotional journey that is to last for over ten years and which continues to this day….

We have collected the keys to our French home, our first real home together and we are as nervous as a pair of kittens. Continue reading The fastest talking chef in le Sud Ouest…

I left my heart…in San Francisco…da di da di daaaa


Sometimes I just want to eat snack food. It’s a theme in our family, Karl-Heinz being the snack food king with his ‘folded over’ cheese sandwich…Rocket with his hot spicy nuts (tee-hee) my lovely dad used to choose a cheese sarnie for his supper, he and Maman adhering to the dinner at 5.30 in the afternoon rule, you can hardly blame him for being peckish by 9 o’clock?. Continue reading I left my heart…in San Francisco…da di da di daaaa

The Crew


I’ve been working as a temp in a managerial role for nearly a year now. This has been an interesting experience on any number of levels – none of which have anything to do with the work I do personally but at least there is some interest. All in all I’d like to apologise to any temp I’ve ever managed, for not recognising how under valued they are generally. I have, though, voluntarily entered this pathway and for now, it suits me just fine.

Now I can tell you about my teams – collectively called ‘the crew’. Continue reading The Crew

Saturday night risotto


I’m not a snob about food, but I can be a purist at times. With a Risotto I’ve gone through something of an evolution and have listened carefully to the advice of a whole range of exponent’s from renowned chefs to your ‘genuine Italians’. So I’ve tried the whole bake it in oven method and the “there is no need to stir it”, and “you can use a stock cube” and they are all true I suppose. However, for me there is now a tried and tested route to the more delicious outcome and it does involve making some stock up (even if you partially cheat) and it does involve stirring so this is usually a Saturday evening ‘non time’ pressured activity for me. Continue reading Saturday night risotto

Karl-Heinz and The Minx

My brother Karl-Heinz is an epic cook and is probably responsible for having fired my interest in cookery when, as the older teen, he began his culinary journey worshiping at the feet of the legendary Keith Floyd. A really happy memory for me from years back is Karl-Heinz’s rendition of Floyd’s chicken cooked in beer served with tagliatelle….happy days…. Continue reading Karl-Heinz and The Minx

About Thursdays

I try to cram all my hours into 4 days so as to have the luxury of Friday off ( it doesn’t always work) which also means that I can give a little time to the Petit Cherie our little dog and to Maman (my mum) both of whom get a bit lonely throughout the week. What this means in reality is a) I’m exhausted by Thursday night b) Thursday is the new Friday and in spite of the fatigue, I always want to go out on a Thursday… Continue reading About Thursdays

I’m a mad foodie

…with delusions of opening my own food business – a deli to be precise.  I’ve bored everyone rigid with the finer details of my imagined emporium – still haven’t got it going though. On this long journey of not really doing much but cooking, eating and travelling when I can, I thought I’d share my gastronomic ramblings, and particularly my passion for British seafood and the industry. I might share a restaurant tip or a recipe along the way… Continue reading I’m a mad foodie