During the year I spent in London (2009) I discovered Borough Market (pictured here). Undoubtedly now one of my favourite places in London.
I spent many a glorious morning wandering through Borough Market drinking coffee and trying: beetroot &ricotta ravioli, pistachio turkish delight, red onion marmalade, caramel spread, peppadew marmalade, pear & vanilla marmalade, lemon curd………*bliss*
One of the challenges I set myself that year was to be a more adventurous eater. Over the course of the year and my travels I tried: foie gras (actually at Borough Market), duck, Stilton cheese, haggis, deep-fried Mars bars, truffles, truffle oil, sushi, tofu….all firsts for me.
Another foodie adventure I really enjoyed was the monthly ladies dinner club I joined – on the first Thursday of each month a group of us would meet up for dinner. The idea was not only to catch up, but to try out different restaurants and different types of cuisine. Over the year I was there we tried Russian, Chinese, Thai, Turkish and Indian restaurants along with pubs and British cuisine.
I also discovered Books for Cooks – if you have a chance to visit this magical place, I strongly recommend it! They are in Notting Hill, on a little side road just off Portobello Road (another great market runs here Portobello Market). It is a cook book shop and test kitchen, as well as offering cooking classes.
They sum up the test kitchen best here (taken from their website): “Everyday recipes are tested from the cookbooks on the shelves by one of Books for Cooks’ resident chefs. Everyday, at the handful of tables squeezed into an alcove between the bookshelves and the kitchen, customers can sample splendid lunches, fantastic home-baked cakes and the best cup of coffee in Notting Hill, until everything runs out. The test kitchen is more than just a café; it’s a kitchen laboratory where cooks try out unusual dishes, experiment with food and develop new recipes. The menu changes daily as what’s on the seasonally changing stalls of Portobello market and which of the thousands of cookbooks on our shelves is being put to the test determine the dish of the day.”
I was lucky enough to have a number of amazing meals at Books for Cooks.
Here are some snaps of Borough market taken on one of my many trips there:
My challenge to you: Our tastes and food preferences change over time, things that you hated in your younger years, you may find you enjoy now. Keep your eyes open for different and exciting foods and recipes.