In & Out Of My Kitchen

I can’t believe two months have flown by since my last In & Out Of My Kitchen post!

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In early September we celebrated our 21st wedding anniversary with a lovely lunch at Hutong in the Shard. Marvellous views, good food and friendly service.

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One of my favourite lunch options near my office was Ju Mak, I always ordered lunch bowl number 1 – with sweet fried belly pork slices, kimchi, spring onions and a fried egg over rice. Sadly, when I went last week, the place was closed and I can’t tell whether it’s being refurbished and will reopen as the same restaurant, or whether Ju Mak is gone and a new place will open. Keeping my fingers crossed that I’ll be able to enjoy this tasty lunch again soon.

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Schwartz’ Deli, Timbits from Tim Hortons, Notre Dame Basilica, Restaurant Lemeac

In early September I headed to Canada for a really fantastic press trip. I’ve started sharing some of that with you already, but there are many, many more posts to come. My first stop was Montreal, a fantastically foodie city with a delightful mix of old and new districts, a really varied food scene and an incredible food market I fell head-over-aubergines for!

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Next stop was Quebec City which started with a driving tour around the gorgeous Île d’Orléans. Much of the island is farmland and I loved the farmgate shops selling fresh fruit and vegetables.

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Quebec City was a French food lover’s delight – had the best sweetbreads there I’ve eaten for a long time. And it’s also where I had my first real poutine, in the very place that is said to have invented them!

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One of the most fascinating experiences for me was my visit to the Huron-Wendat Museum – a museum, hotel and restaurant dedicated to sharing first nation tradition with visitors. I loved chatting to executive chef Martin Gagné about the traditional ingredients he uses in the modern restaurant.

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After my time in Quebec I flew down to Ontario and made my way to Niagara-on-the-Lake for an incredible few days hosted by Michael and Anna Olson. Not only did they take us to their favourite local vineyards, restaurants, delis and farms, they also invited us into their home for dinner and breakfast, teaching us some of their delicious recipes before we sat down to eat.

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I adored the farmgate shops, especially the large one at Whitty Farms, where our group tasted our first Canadian Butter Tarts – an utter delight!

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I was particularly excited about this segment of my trip because it included visits to several local vineyards that make (amongst other types of wine) the famous local ice wine. This stunning dessert wine is a regional speciality and as a lover of dessert wines, I was absolutely in my element! I bought two bottles home with me but wish I could have carried back an entire suitcase!

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No visit to this beautiful region would be complete without a visit to the Niagara Falls and we enjoyed both a boat cruise and a spectacular helicopter ride over the falls, before being flown straight to our next destination – another wonderful vineyard for a very delicious lunch!

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I think what made the biggest impression on me about this area of Ontario was the locally grown produce. The variety was amazing (thanks to a very varied local geography that gives rise to a wide range of microclimates) and the quality absolutely superb. Of course, I bought some maple syrup (from both Quebec and Ontario) back home with me! Recipes featuring this gorgeous ingredient to come soon!

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My last stop was Toronto, a world class city that I absolutely loved exploring. After a zip around the eclectic wares of Tap Phong in China Town, and a phenomenal dim sum lunch at Luckee’s, we said goodbye to our hosts and to the lovely Diane, the tour manager who had looked after us so well for the preceding days. I stayed on in Toronto, returning first to China Town for a more in depth wander – the red bean bun I had in Hong Kong Island Bakery was one of the best such buns I’ve ever tasted!

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I also loved Kensington Market, a small but hip area with another fruit and vegetable market, and lots of small hip restaurants, cafes and ethnic groceries full of tempting ingredients and speciality foods.

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Once again, there were wonderful historical buildings and areas amongst more modern Toronto. And oh my goodness, just look at that view from my hotel room!

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When I got home, autumn had kicked in, though weather was still warmer than expected. We harvested lots of delicious plums from our allotment, and a handful of very tart but pretty red apples from our two youngest apple trees.

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Missing Canada, the first thing I cooked on the weekend following my return home was an adaptation of Anna Olson’s sticky buns, a recipe she taught us during our visit to her home. You can find the original recipe, and my variations, here.

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One late September weekend I visited Food Blogger Connect, grateful that the rain stayed away given the unexpectedly outdoor nature of the venue. The street food stalls included treats from The Athenian (fantastic, delicious and generously sized wraps), Crazy for Pasta (who not only cooked but made their pasta fresh for every customer), The Pandan Bakery (who kindly introduced us to a variety of Malaysian treats) and Churros Garcia (which I confess I visited three times!)

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I was treated to some delicious foie gras products courtesy of Foie Gras Gourmet, an online mail order service specialising in high quality products from the Perigord.

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A lovely lunch at what I am certain is the best Lebanese in London reminded us that we should go much, much more often.

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Lunch is nearly always a mad rush out for a local takeaway and back to eat it within my half hour lunch break. Recent lunches include pork katsu don and a sushi box from Ohaio (affectionately known as the hole in the wall, located in New Malden Station), chicken katsu curry from Noodle Express, a mixed box of beef, rice and sweet and sour chicken from Do Bento, a huge jacket potato with bolognese and cheese from Village Cafe and a lamb wrap from somewhere at the other end of the high street, that one of my colleagues kindly collected on behalf of several of us for Shawarma Day!

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I will never ever get bored of eggs and toast!

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I went into China Town with a friend to review Viet Food, during which we popped into Cinnabon for some weekend treats and enjoyed the lanterns left up after the Moon Festival.

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A dear friend visited London and we caught up over a lovely lunch at Portrait Restaurant in the National Portrait Gallery. Lovely views, good food and warm and attentive service. Would go again!

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Absolutely loved reviewing the latest food subscription service – Cheese Posties. Each delivery contains everything you need to make a delicious cheese toastie, with innovative flavour and ingredient combinations that make it lots of fun.

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What greater way to spend a weekend lunch than with friends over dim sum at Pearl Liang?

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Another recipe I really must share with you soon is the quick beef rendang we learned to make on a cookery class we attended earlier this year. This delicious recipe is a one pot meal (everything goes in together) and takes just a few hours rather than the traditional 12-18!

Quick Golden Baked Peri Peri Chicken Yoghurt and Rice Cake - Kavey Eats (text1) Rostizza - Potato Rosti Pizza Base on Kavey Eats © Kavita Favelle (2)

Lastly, please let me share some work I’m really proud of: It’s not unusual these days for food bloggers to take beautifully styled and photographed images of their recipes that are every bit as professional as tempting as those you find in glossy food magazines. But I’ve very rarely styled the food I post on Kavey Eats, snapping a few super quick grabshots before we tuck in to dinner; my ability to produce a planned and styled shot has remained pretty much untested. So I was really, really pleased with the recipes and photos I created for two recent commissioned posts, one for Quick Golden-Baked Peri Peri Chicken, Yoghurt & Rice Cake and the other for my Potato Rösti Pizza Base – I call it the Röstizza!

That’s an exhausting (but by no means exhaustive) meander through some of my food experiences during the last two months.

Thanks for reading!

And a warm wave at fellow In My Kitchen posters this month.

I’m submitting this post to Celia’s In My Kitchen series. Cheers, Celia!

Please leave a comment - I love hearing from you!
36 Comments to "In & Out Of My Kitchen"

  1. kaveyeats

    Girl, you are so fast! Thanks for reading and thanks for the egg cup love. I used to collect them, I don’t expand the collection any more (indeed I pruned it hard to keep only my top 100 or so!) but I still enjoy using them and keep a small subset on display in the living room!

    Reply
  2. Fiona @ London-Unattached

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE the look of those sticky buns! And, like you I rarely food style – your photos DO look great! I wonder if you have the same challenge as me – once I’ve cooked something good, I just want to EAT!

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    kaveyeats

    They are so good, that Anna Olson is a clever lady. And yes exactly that, I’m just so impatient to eat! 🙂

    Reply
  3. Kate | The Veg Space

    Wow Kavey, haven’t you been busy! Your foodie trip to Canada looks just epic, I’ve never been but your photos have got me tempted now! And love your latest photography – great ideas, I must try a Röstizza soon!

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    kaveyeats

    It was a wonderful trip, I’m longing to go back. Thank you for your kind compliments. Much appreciated!

    Reply
  4. kaveyeats

    Yes, sooo cold, especially day 1 when I hadn’t worn outdoor clothes! Lovely to see you too, hopefully catch up more next time.

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  5. kaveyeats

    Ha haaaa, mostly I was at work for much of the time but that’d be boring to include! Was good to meet you too, thanks Jac!

    Reply
  6. Diane Woodard

    What a wonderful way to end a rainy, chilly, cloudy Sunday. I loved reading this post. I can almost taste everything you described!

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    kaveyeats

    Thank you Diane, lovely to stay connected across the pond on a rainy November Sunday!

    Reply
  7. Elizabeth

    What an adventurous foodie life you lead! So envious! Glad to have shared a bit of it with you at Food Blogger Connect though. 🙂

    Reply
    kaveyeats

    Aaw, thanks Elizabeth. I think with work and the commute as they are at the moment, it’s good to remind myself of all the fun stuff I’m still squeezing in around it! Was lovely to meet you at FBC too!

    Reply
  8. kaveyeats

    Yes, hot fresh fries, squeaky curd cheese and gravy, definitely the perfect comfort food!

    Reply
  9. Prateek D

    What a lovely post, shared it on twitter! I have lived in Toronto for 4 months, and absolutely love Kensignton Market, wondering in you stopped by Sangan’s meat locker? St Lawrence is amazing too! All the food looks delicious! Oh and Happy Anniversary!

    Reply
    kaveyeats

    Thank you Prateek! No I didn’t get to Sangan’s but yes I did visit St Lawrence Market and enjoyed that too. Loved Toronto!

    Reply
  10. Alida

    What a fab experience! I love all your photos here, you have done so much! Never been to Canada but one day.. perhaps!

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    kaveyeats

    Thank you Alida, has felt like a work heavy period lately so it’s good to remind myself I’ve still fitted in lots of fun!

    Reply
  11. Emily (Cooking for Kishore)

    Happy Anniversary Kavey! Looks like you had a wonderful time on your Canada trip. We loved our visit to the Huron -Wendat, did you go the restaurant NEK8ARRE? The food was delicious! I did a post on it earlier this year. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

    Reply
    kaveyeats

    Thank you Emily! No I ate in La Traite restaurant, it was delicious. Will be sharing about that soon.
    Thanks for visiting!

    Reply
  12. Kim | a little lunch

    Waving back, Kavey! Congratulations on your wedding anniversary and WOW to your travels and food experiences these past few months. (I hope you took time for a long luxurious soak in that bathtub overlooking Toronto’s skyline!) I hear ya on snapping quick photos (never mind styling), but you outdid yourself on those last two gorgeous shots — great recipes, too!

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    kaveyeats

    Hey Kim, lovely to hear from you. Yes I did indulge in a lights-off soak in that tub, blinds up to enjoy the view! Thank you for you kindness about my styled photos! X

    Reply
  13. Jeanne Horak-Druiff

    What a whirlwind!! I love this idea of rounding up what you’ve been eating. The Canada pics brought back such great memories of our trip – definitely somewhere to return to! And happy anniversary 🙂

    Reply

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