Thursday, 8 March 2012

Tuesday - Chicken Stir - Fry

So we are in catch up mode again! On Tuesday Jo made one of the best stir-frys yet - it was delicious and here it is in pictures!

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

A Round Up From Joe - Saturday, Sunday and Monday!

Ok, Jo isn't too pleased that I am doing a round up blog but I don't care! I've had a long day and my head is frazzled and I am feeling here it is....

On Saturday Smartie visited and we had a great day out in Leeds drinking! After meeting with Dave Bro and Mike Work we went to Aire Bar, Elbow Room, Leeds Uni (briefly), The Wrens then took in a lovely drunk dinner at Darvish which is ever was great. We then headed back to ours for drinking, chatting and dancing until the early hours - I went to bed at one-ish and left Dave and Smartie setting the world to rights and getting through my whisky!

Dave Bro
Darvish delights
If you read the blog you will know that Jo was in Edinburgh, and I was looking forward for her getting back. I was expecting to have a big hangover, but for once I didn't and I put it down to not smoking when drinking. I am very much a part-time smoker, but saturday was the first time for as long as I remember that I haven't had a cigarette or five when out on the lash. Smartie and I agreed that we wouldn't smoke and neither of us did - great success and long may it continue....

For dinner Jo made fish pie with a puff pastry lid - is this controversial?? I get the impression most have mash on top but the pie goes a little mushy for us!!

Fish pie
Dinner yesterday was bolognese that had been in the freezer for a month or so....rather than pasta, Jo wanted to have it with rice as she had a sore throat. I thought that was a little strange but who an I  to argue with the chef!
Bolognese and rice

Sunday, 4 March 2012

A Weekend Round-up - Edinburgh

I was in Edinburgh this weekend, while I left Joe to party the night away in Leeds.  For ease (and laziness), this is a round up of the weekend, minus the review of lunch at Joseph Pearce which has its own post.

On Friday night we opted for an Indian takeaway from the St John's Curry Club in Corstorphine which was a pleasant surprise.  I'm never convinced Indian food will match up to what is on offer in this area - Yorkshire is blessed with a huge number of very good Indian restaurants so we rarely have a bad experience.  But this one was very good - when the menu said spicy, it meant spicy, as my poor mother found out to her shock (I think she mistook a chilli for a green bean and had a bit of a surprise!).  I also treated the family to some home made bhajis so overall it was a good (drunken) meal.  I would particularly recommend the prawn jhalfrezi and the lamb sag gosht which had a really good sauce. 

My onion bhajis - getting better with every try!
Vegetable samosas
curry...including chicken pathia, prawn jhalfrezi and bombay began and mushroom jhalfrezi (which was also pretty special and included that sneaky green chilli!)
On Saturday night Michael and Kerstin made dinner, with Michael showing off his Italian cooking skills with a lovely seafood and mushroom risotto.  I am particularly jealous of anyone who can make a good risotto as mine is a little hit and miss, and Michael's was pretty special.  I was told the secret is a lot of white wine and possibly a risotto spoon (although they may have been winding me up about that!)  We were also treated to some lovely home made bread and salad.  Yum.  Many thanks!

Michael's Seafood and Mushroom Risotto
And my plate - a total treat for dinner

Friday - Lunch at Joseph Pearce 5/10

When Joe and I first started doing the blog, it was off the back of a string of terrible restaurant experiences.  Believe it or not, virtually every time we went out for dinner we had some sort of disaster - bad food, rude service, drunken people pretending to work for Michelin starred establishments......

However, since we started writing up our food escapades there have been minimal issues.  Of course there's always going to be the occasional dish we don't like, a hiccup here, a snappy waitress there, but overall we've had a pretty good run of things.

This wasn't going to last though, was it.  I'll preface this with saying lunch at Joseph Pearce wasn't terrible at all: the food was perfectly nice.  But they really p*ssed me off and I can't not be honest about it.

I spent the weekend in Edinburgh doing lots of wedding things, such as dress buying (great success!) and choosing a photographer.  After finally finding a dress that I loved, my mother, brother Michael, sister in law Kerstin and baby Tom met for lunch at Joseph Pearce on Elm Row.

We had picked it as we wanted to try somewhere new, and by all accounts it was a child-friendly, laid back cafe/bar which seemed to get pretty good write-ups.  It was also very convenient, as we had an appointment on Abercromby Place at 2.00pm.  We arrived at about one o'clock, Friday lunch time, and were given our choice of tables.  There was an area decked out for children, but we sat in the main dining area as that was already fairly busy.  Joseph Pearce does have some lovely touches.  The menus are contained in old childrens' books - I think mine was bound in a Winnie The Pooh story, which was really cute.  There's lots of space, so even in the main dining area there was space for a pram and a high chair.

My mum and I ordered some wine (to celebrate the new dress, obvs), and Michael and Kerstin joined us a few minutes later.  We were all planning on having lunch, and had about an hour, which is usually plenty of time during a week day lunch hour.  But therein lay the challenge for Joseph Pearce.   Everything was slow.  They were fine taking orders, although our waiter did seem to be a little unsure of what they had on offer (Kerstin asked for a sparkling elderflower drink - it took 10 minutes to tell her they had a bottle of elderflower wine, or could do cordial with sparkling water).  But it was the half an hour it took them to bring food which really did me in.  We didn't order anything complicated - the menu has lovely but simple options, and it wasn't busy - so it simply baffles me how it could take so long to do the food, especially as I asked after 20 minutes how long it would be and was told, "a couple of minutes".

Perhaps I misjudged it as a place to go.  I'm sure it would be perfectly fine for a very lazy Sunday brunch with the papers.  And the food was nice - mum and I had a BLT which came on rye bread with white truffle mayonnaise, while Michael had the brunch dish (brioche with tomatoes, mushrooms and eggs) and Tom had cheese on toast.  The BLT was pretty tasty, although slightly overloaded with mayonnaise, while the brunch looked good.  But to coin a terrible cliche, the service was so slow it could have been horizontal, and for that they remain unforgiven.

BLT on rye
Joseph Pearce brunch