Thursday, 19 September 2013

September 2013 Favourites List

For me, September means only one thing: BACK TO SCHOOL! I remember the days when that meant getting a new uniform, or seeing if you could get another year's wear out of last year, and the inevitable new pencil case.   More innocent times!

These days, I'm the one at the front of the classroom. It's a whole different ball game. It's not about just me talking or knowing all the answers. It's about getting students involved. Achieving the task of facilitating understanding. Getting students to work out the answers for themselves. 

It's also about encouraging the students to WANT to know more. To inspire them to care about their own education, their own skills, their own knowledge. 

So what is my role? Lecturer, cheerleader, motivational guru, interviewer, devil's advocate. Occasionally a matron (oo-er!) or policewoman. No wonder I sometimes can't tell whether I'm coming or going!

This week was the first week of the new intake coming to study the Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC). It's a hectic and exciting week. So many conflicting emotions. The final sad realisation that the students who were with me last academic year have finished the course and I have to let them go. The joy of meeting a new batch of fresh faces. 

This month's post is dedicated to my students, old and new. Good luck, good fortune, good health and I wish you the greatest success in everything you do.

This month's pictures are from the rain forest in Costa Rica. A beautiful, lush, green country, I would love to explore properly one day.

Blogs Worth Following:

Bengali people often refer to themselves as "Bong". This super site will teach you how to cook (and shop) like a Bong!

Nicholas Clee wrote a great book, Don't Sweat The Aubergine, here is his blog full of recipes:

Blog dedicated to Nyonya food (Peranakean):


Introduction to Fudge and a Vanilla Fudge recipe:

Besan (chickpea) burfi with cardomom flavouring:

Chicken thighs, leeks and thyme in a perfect midweek supper salad recipe by Angela Hartnett:

Strawberry, vodka and white wine cocktail recipe for 10:

Cyrus Todiwala's Pulled pork with cinnamon and clove from The Incredible Spicemen is something I really want to make:

One of my friends made this over the weekend, and said it was a great, delicious Vietnamese recipe. So here is Spicy Vietnamese Beef (Bo Kho) from Nom Nom Paleo (blog devoted to the Caveman diet):

Liking the look of the fennel and beetroot coleslaw:

How to make a Cantonese style stir fry:

Mackerel with beetroot; simple and colourful, by Nigel Slater:

Articles/Know How:

Methi/Fenugreek: a marauding and powerful herb/spice which can take over your whole house. A really useful video on the difference between fresh leaf methi, dried leaf methi and fenugreek seeds and when to use each.

Some international dishes have difficult names to pronounce. Here is a visual guide to help!

How flavours are interconnected, an interactive article/map from Scientific American (excellent!):

Him Indoors doesn't mind me adding cloves to food.... as long as he doesn't end up being the poor person who ends up chomping on it. Here's a tip from Kavey on how to avoid that - DIY tea bags!


The Incredible Spice Men (BBC iplayer link to episode 1 available until 23 Sept:


Jagwa Ma - Howling

Maps - Vicissitudes

Justin Currie - Lower Reaches

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