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5
Jan

la stalla-on the way copy

There aren’t many restaurants that I love to return to again and again but La Stalla near Assisi is one of them. For one, I love the drive to get there, through spectacular countryside with stunning views of Assisi. Then, there is the torta sul testo, an Umbrian flat bread from the province of Perugia which they still bake over a wood fire — it is a little like piadina but thicker and possibly drier.

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18
Aug

hommus khawali-finished & plated copy

Today world leaders have finally called on the lion to step down. Let’s hope he does, and without delay although I am not holding my breath. Anyhow, it is a significant development and to celebrate I decided to give you a recipe from my favourite restaurant in Damascus, Khawali, for one of the best hommus ever. The Syrians don’t put garlic in hommus and if they do, they also add chopped parsley and call it hommus Beiruti. At Khawali they have the regular version and their own hommus Khawali to which they add pepper paste and pomegranate syrup.

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16
Jul

noma 13 copyÆbleskiver and muuiko: a brioche-like doughnut with a fried fresh water baby fish spiked into it — that and Boulette’s Larder doughnuts are the best I have ever had

I don’t normally subscribe to ‘best of’ lists. I find them rather limiting. Mind you, my blog has just been chosen by the Independent as one of the 50 best food sites and I am thrilled to be included! Anyhow, in Noma‘s case, it may just be the best in the world and if not, certainly up there with the very best. Rene Redzepi‘s food is simply spectacular: sophisticated, inventive, delicious and healthy! And you are given enough of each course to savour it fully without feeling full at the end of a meal which in our case included some 25 dishes — we had asked for the full treatment! The setting is also perfect. Simple, elegant and comfortable with lovely natural light and views over the water. As for the service, it is flawless: attentive without being intrusive and supremely knowledgeable.

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4
Apr

china-mongolian hotpot copy

I can’t say that I am finding London life that exciting except possibly for today when the weather was lovely and lunch at Keu, the new banh mi place next to me, sitting at the window counter was even lovelier. Other days, when the weather is dull and I am trying to work, I cheer myself up by looking at my pictures of China, wondering when I will go back to eat jian bing again and my latest discovery, a Mongolian hotpot.

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