Saturday, 26 November 2016

November 2016 Favourites List

It seems like only days since I compiled last month’s Favourites List. The old tempus has definitely fugit! I have been very busy at work as the academic year is in full swing and the course I teach in steps up a gear. Time to spend on reading, listening to music, going to gigs and eating out has been in scarce supply. My students have been coping with an extensive workload and many demanding calls on their time. 

The clocks went back as we adjust to “Winter time” and it always seems to take me time to adjust. Short days, long nights are something I struggle with.

So this month’s pictures are a reminder of this Summer, when the days were longer, the days warm and I was discovering new horizons. Before our trip to Japan, I was recommended the small town of Arashiyama as a great little day trip to make from Kyoto by Kavey of the brilliant Kavey Eats food and travel blog. She told me that I simply had to see the combination of bamboo, gardens, temples and natural beauty to be found there. She even wrote it down for me with an excited “LOVE THIS PLACE!” next to the name of the town.

Intrigued by her enthusiastic recommendation, we had to check it out. The Bamboo Grove there is a green haven of beauty, natural, man-made and maintained. The Tenryu-ji monastery is a meditative and peaceful oasis, with a wonderful vegetarian restaurant. The house of the actor Denjirō Ōkōchi at Ōkōchi Sansō is a gorgeous traditional Japanese garden. Well worth a day’s excursion, it was a place for inspiration and reflection.

I hope you like the pictures which accompany this month’s collection of lovely stuff. 


Twice baked butternut squash with parmesan, cream, bacon and hazlenuts. A glorious side dish for Thanksgiving!

Lovely vegetarian dry curry to eat with chapatis or paratha. Cauliflower And Peas Bhaji With Low Spices (Dry Curry) - Gobhi (Phool) aur Matar ki Sabji:

Pork loin with pumpkin puree and pecorino. You can make the puree in advance for speed. 

Squash time! Butternut squash; braised, made into gnocchi and a squash mash from Yotam Ottolenghi.

Storecupboard simple supper, comforting and pretty healthy. Pasta e Fagioli - pasta with borlotti beans.

Slow cooked cubes of pork shoulder with apricot and tamarind for a Winter warmer:

One pot cooking is just brilliant; all the flavours combine, you get a simple to make dinner and there isn't loads of stuff to wash up. Meat and grain one-pots by Yotam Ottolenghi.

I found this recipe for Bonfire Night parties, but it can be enjoyed any time during the Autumn and Winter; an Alpine inspired variation to classic British jacket Spuds!

Tom Kitchin’s sausage casserole: sausages, tomatoes, white onion, bacon rashers and butter beans.

Lentils with pasta (Harak osbao), Bulgur with tomato, fried aubergine and cucumber yoghurt, Chicken meatballs with molokhia, garlic and coriander; recipes from Yotam Ottolenghi:

Braised ribs are so different from fried. The meat is soft, not stringy, and the true flavour comes out. Being able to do the cooking in a slow cooker makes life easy.

Mashbous, Palestinian chicken with rice and spice plus a book review of Palestine On A Plate: 

Articles/Know How:

A "Which?" Magazine blind test scores Aldi's £10 Champagne better than Laurent Perrier, Veuve Cliquot and Moet & Chandon.

Din Tai Fung is a Taiwan and Hong Kong institution. Their dumplings are cheap and divine. It is fantastic news that they are looking to open in London:

A beginner's guide to the wines of Bordeaux. By supperclub host, food author and blogger Kerstin Rodgers:

We all know that it will soon be colds and flu season... Here is how to help protect yourself.  

Handy guide on preparing different types of squash, gourd and pumpkin:

What you might have missed at Snig's Kitchen:

Snigdha learns basic Wok star moves with Chef Jeremy Pang!

My review of "the Dancing Chef" Natasha MacAller's Spice Health Heroes.  

A novice's guide to elements of food styling, as taught to me by Mademoiselle Poirot.

My other writings:

My analysis on the Uber drivers case. (By way of background: the Employment Tribunal has found that Uber drivers should be classified as “workers”, meaning their claims for the minimum wage, paid annual leave and whistleblowing can now be heard in full [as the hearing was a preliminary one]). I consider the legal principles and findings of fact by the tribunal.

Please note: as with every monthly Favourites List, all of these items have been selected by me simply because I love them. I do not receive any money, benefits in kind or other incentive for posting these links or recommendations.

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