Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Un croissant, un petit pot de Nutella et un chihuahua

This is Napoleon and he joined me for some breakfast last week at Fego cafe. Now most places don't even give you Nutella with your croissant let alone a generous pot spilling over the sides. The croissant was perfectly warmed and ideal for dunking in that glossy chocolate.

I was pleasantly surprised as was my little friend, Napoleon!

Monday, 17 January 2011

The ultimate / delicious / quality / indulgent / expensive / rich / yet simple / totally worth it dessert!

Racine is on 239 Brompton Road in Knightsbridge. It is a traditional and lavish French restaurant and it happens to do a simple but quality vanilla ice cream with hot Valrhona chocolate sauce.

This is in my opinion the ultimate combination of perfection with more perfection. My sister is clearly having a moment to herself here whilst savouring every moment of this experience.

They are generous with the little jug of Valrhona sauce so there is plenty to snack on after all the vanilla is finished.

My dad had this amazing looking rhubarb tart with goat's cheese ice cream which was great but did not quite measure up to my pudding.

At £6.50 it is not cheap but you are paying for the surroundings and after a taste you would probably pay 10. It's not great to share though as you would not want to spare any of it. Somebody (below) made this mistake and as you can see regretted it.


The Model turned The Chef

So from this ...

...to this!

Lorraine Pascale appears to have had about five different careers, most famous for her modelling and now has become BBC 2's hot new chef. Her show Baking Made Easy started last week and she demonstrates how simple is can be to make your own patisseries and bread. So watch her on Mondays at 8.30pm, you will not be disappointed as she's so friendly and smiley.

She also has a cupcake shop called Ella's Bakehouse in Covent Garden, clearly this is a super woman.

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

T. I. A.

T. I. A. - This is Africa!

Whilst on a recent trip to Kenya I had no idea that I would be bringing my work with me, it turns out the Kenyans love ice cream. Sails restaurant which is part of the Almanara resort was situated just off Diani beach and I managed to accumulate ten hungry ice cream tasters, an ice cream visit record!

Megan with her after eight flavour which she said she quite enjoyed despite the colour being luminous green.

The setting definitely made this ice cream tastier than it probably was although nothing could knock the waffle biscuits that were dunked in. They may not look like much here but they were delightful.

Luke here had peanut butter and vanilla, quote "it's not blowing my head off!" All the tasters became quite critical by the end of the evening complaining about melting points and lack of visible vanilla seeds but I was in hot Kenya so I for once did not participate.

Next up was Leonardo's

Megan and Flick were very excited about this.

In fact so were the whole Gibbon family!

I had chocolate and stracciatella which were both enjoyable in the heat but looking more closely the straciatella was a little icy.

The real winner here was the banana ice cream which Flick had cleverly gone for as it was perfectly sweet and smooth. Later we soon worked out that of course the fruit flavours would be the best choice, T.I.A.!!

In amongst all this ice cream fun there was time for probably the best breakfast on the planet. Nutella crepe with fresh mango!!!

This was without doubt one of the highlights of my work trip.

Last stop on the Kenyan ice cream tour was the Nomads hotel.

We wasted no time and went straight for the sorbets, mango, passion fruit, melon and pineapple.

The pineapples in Kenya were like none other that I have ever tasted as they were so incredibly sweet and juicy. They did not possess that acidity which I am normally use to and instead these African bad boys created something not far away from sorbet heaven.

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Ice Palazzo in Plettenberg Bay, South Africa.

My friends Helen and Roxy have been continuing the ice cream journey although they've left cold and rainy London behind and gone to the African Continent to a seaside town called Plettenberg Bay in South Africa.

This little shop is called Ice Palazzo and it's known to be the best for gelato in the area according Roxy. She has good training on the ice cream front and is almost as critical as myself (as I'm the best). It's worth noting that she received a tour from the owner on how they make their ice cream and explaining how they believe in using fresh ingredients.

Saturday, 8 January 2011

Something to start the new ice cream year

So apparently Katy Perry is a massive ice cream fan, who knew? Even though I find her a little outrageous at times I must confess that I kind of like her now after seeing these photos. Also if you want to see what a cupcake suit looks like check out the video above as Snoopy Dog is donning one.

She puts me a little to shame here wearing an ice cream latex dress. True dedication though, I like it!

She appears to have her own ice cream van too, again she's racing ahead of me.

I like her enthusiasm.

And the traditional way, just chilling, on a boat, with a friend.