Crackling cakes – or bonfire bites if you prefer
Before we go any further, I’m not a cook, or a food blogger or even much of a foodie.
But this does mean that when it comes to grub, and the making of it, I’m a big fan of nothing too complicated. (If I’m following a recipe and there’s more than about ten ingredients my brain starts to weep.)
When it comes to fireworks parties, usually the general rule is everyone brings something. That “something” is usually expected to be homemade. Which generally requires a bit of effort and/or expense if you’re not going to embarrass yourself.
Which is why I came up with my crackling cakes (or bonfire bites if you prefer). Continue reading
She has baked for Pierce Brosnan, President Obama and the Queen – can Mich Turner teach us too?
Baking, it seems, was always going to be a big part of Mich Turner’s life. Even at a tender age, the celebrity cake connoisseur and judge on ITV’s Britain’s Best Bakery, was baking biscuits.
‘My earliest baking memory is when I was four years old, standing on a chair in the kitchen and making little butter biscuits,’ recalls Mich. ‘I would always pretend to be Delia Smith. I’d make biscuits in front of my imaginary audience, showing them what I was doing and how I was doing it.’
She’s come a long way from then, becoming one of the UK’s finest cake bakers – making creations for everyone from the Queen and President Barack Obama to David Beckham and Miranda Hart. But when she started out in the industry, things were rather different. Cakes, and cake making, didn’t have the kudos they do now.
I’m a big fan of chocolate. And dinner parties. But I’m not a natural born cook. As such I’m always looking for ingenious ways to cheat my way to new culinary heights.
So I was delighted to be invited to spend an afternoon with Sweet Treat baker Lily Vanilli, learning how to create a cheeky – and super easy – dessert.
‘Simplicity is the key to greatness,’ Marco Pierre White tells me as I join him in the kitchen…
Things are heating up in the kitchen on Marco Pierre White’s Kitchen Wars (Channel 5, Thursdays 8pm).
The former enfant terrible of the UK restaurant scene is back (knife in hand and strut in situ). So I joined him at the stove to find out his pet cooking hates and top foodie tips.
Me and Marco Pierre White
Over the course of the afternoon I sat in the kitchen at his Stamford Bridge restaurant and watched him at work.
As the delicious scents of pumpkin soup and then risotto filled the air he told me, ‘Cooking is a philosophy unless it’s pastry in which case it’s chemistry.’
I have a confession to make. Sushi scares me. I never eat it and thus, have never ordered a Japanese dish for myself in a restaurant. I have no idea where this completely irrational fear comes from. I love seafood. I like rice. Vegetables are friends rather than foes where I am concerned. But somehow, when it’s all put together in little parcels (that do actually remind me of eyes); I get a bit nervous about it. Continue reading