Saw this on another blog and seeing as I haven’t done a meme in a long time, I thought what the heck.
1. Can you cook?
Ostensibly yes, though I am more comfortable following a recipe rather than ‘free-wheeling’.
2. Do you like to cook?
Not really, no. I love eating though. I can have quite a short attention span and sometimes get impatient which is why cooking is no great pastime of mine.
3. What do you eat for breakfast?
Well, the company I work at provides toasters and bread on all floors. So I often have brown buttered toast. I have got into the habit of buying cereal recently and eating that at work (the cereal would usually be a fruit and fibre derivative of some sort).
4. When, where and how do you eat on weekdays?
One of the (big) perks of my company is that we get lunch paid for. We have 3 different venue choices, 2 of which deliver, 1 of which you can eat in, and 1 of which is close by. I go to the one that is close by. Quite a well known establishment in our area. The salads are lovely though I will usually plump for the hot food. The menu changes every day. It might be sausage casserole, fish pie, vegetarian chilli, etc.
5. When, where and how do you eat on weekends?
It is said I don’t eat especially well at weekends. I invariably go to my wonderful Italian deli which I’ve been patronising for years. Phenomenally good food. I always get the same things. Big fat Italian olives, fresh crusty bread, a vegetable samosa, almond tarts, hummus, etc. I will usually go to my friend Sheridan’s for dinner. He lives in a 3 storey London townhouse with conservatory and garden (I live in a shoebox/flat) so we’ll often take turns cooking at his place. He is not a great cook so I will invariably do the cooking. He also has the eating habits of Britain circa 1950 (no spice, no pasta, no fish, no curry, etc) which means it’s usually meat and two veg. Which is fine. He has an extremely good butcher round the corner from him that we buy meat from.
6. How often do you eat in a restaurant?
Oh, pretty often. It’s a perk of not having kids and having a half decent job, the money is there to be spent on something. I’m not a huge fan of chain restaurants, preferring something decent. That said I don’t go to really expensive places. I will often eat out, say at wine bars, rather than in actual restaurants as such.
7. How often do you order delivery/take-out?
Not that often. There is an absolutely to-die-for fish and chip restaurant/takeaway (one of the best in London) a mile or so from me so as a treat I might drive there once a month to pick up fish, chips & mushy peas. There is no decent Chinese takeaway near me and the Indian one is ‘so so’.
8. Buffet, take-out or sit-down restaurant?
I would prefer sit down.
9. What are your signature dishes?
Well, there is my classic meat sauce dish which can either be used as a bolognese base or in a cottage pie. It’s a Nigel Slater recipe and very good. My other dish is beef in Guinness casserole which is seriously yummy, served with lots of fluffy mash and loadsa cabbage (cabbage is my favourite vegetable).
10. Have you ever cooked for more than six people?
Hmm. I don’t think so. Well, possibly 8. When I first moved to London (10 years ago) my life was different. A lot uni friends living down here. Lots of dinner parties and ‘soirées’ as we called them back then. Life isn’t really like that now. I don’t entertain. I’m in the process of extricating myself from my flat (that I’ve been in almost 7 years) and when I’ve moved, I hope to entertain again. Watch this space.
11. Do you cook every day?
12. Have you ever tried recipes from blogs?
13. Do you cook totally differently compared to your mother/parents?
Both of my parents are very good cooks. I literally grew up on 100% home cooked food. We never, ever had packaged / ready meals, pizza, that type of thing. I remember my father making his own pasta from scratch. They are still great cooks. My mother can turn her hand to most things, especially anything French / British, whereas my father is very good at Indian, Chinese, Italian (all of which he’ll do from scratch). My brother is also a good cook, certainly better than me.
14. Are you a vegetarian or could you imagine being one?
I have had strong vegetarian leanings for years. I don’t eat lamb or chicken these days (unless under duress, as was the case in France last month at a dinner party). If the chicken is 100% free range (and preferably organic) I may, in a wild-card moment, eat it. I do like pork and beef though, and I love fish.
15. What would you like to cook which you haven’t dared to make yet?
Oh, probably a full Sunday dinner for a load of guests, like roast pork with all the trimmings + starter + dessert + cheese board. Not exactly daring but out of my comfort zone cooking too many things at once.
16. Do you prefer cooking or baking?
I do like baking. I’ve gone through phases of making cakes and stuff before. Not for ages though. These days I would say cooking.
17. Home-made or store-bought?
Absolutely home-made. I hate most store-bought (ready meal) stuff. There are exceptions. Sainsbury’s do lovely jam doughnuts and their bread is very good. Some Waitrose stuff is also nice. I do not like Tesco food as a rule (emphasis is always on cheapness over quality). Store bought (from say, the deli) is a different story. I love real proper bakers, delis, etc, like you get on the continent.
18. What was your biggest cooking disaster?
I made chocolate brownies for a New Year’s dinner party not last year but the year before. One guest had a nut allergy so I left out all the ground almonds, not realising that the recipe was kind of using that in lieu of flour. Suffice to say the thing never set!! We were so tipsy when we did finally eat it (I left it in the oven about 3x as long as was recommended, trying to get it to set), nobody seemed to mind it was gooey.
19. What is your number one comfort food?
Fish & chips (with mushy peas) hands down!
20. If you were on a deserted island, what one food would you want to have with you?
21. What is your biggest weakness when it comes to food?
Basically anything snacky. I can devour whole larders of snack food. Crisps, peanuts, biscuits, cheese, chocolate (only the M&S Swiss stuff, not a fan of Cabury’s).
22. What food can you absolutely not eat?
Don’t like oysters. Also don’t like lots of cuts of meat or cheap meat or meat from not properly reared livestock.
23. What is the most decadent dish you’ve had?
I had something with truffles in at an expensive restaurant in Brussels many moons ago.
24. What is your favourite type of food?
I would say savoury. Like really good canapé, bite sized food really. Comes back to me snacking.
25. What is your favourite dish?
Oh, fish & chips & mushy peas. Roast pork with lots of crackling, fish pie, bread & butter pudding.
26. If you could go to any restaurant you wanted, which one would it be?
Rick Stein’s restaurant in Padstow I think.
27. Are you a soup or salad person?
Love soup. Never been a big salad fan to be honest.
28. What is the most impressive dinner you’ve ever made?
My beef in Guinness casserole.
29. Do you know what vichyssoise is?
I think it’s a soup?? Or it’s a dressing. Not sure.
30. Can you name at least three TV cooking personalities?
And the rest.
31. Who is your favourite TV cook?
Oh that’s hard. Nigella, Rick Stein, Nigel Slater, Gary Rhodes.
The following people are now tagged to complete this meme on their own blog:
Any one not tagged, feel free to still do it. Also, if you don’t have a blog (i.e. you’re a Twitterer!) but want to answer a few, feel free to here.
And for those that do do it on their own blog, if they could send a pingback/trackback to this post when they’re done, I’ll know to come check it out.