Monday, 21 August 2017

August 2017 Favourites List

This month’s pictures are from 78 Derngate, Northampton. It is a fascinating house with remarkable architectural and artistic importance. Built in around 1815-1820, it was a typical terraced house of its day until its owner WJ Bassett-Lowke (a model maker) decided to get the renowned architect Charles Rennie Macintosh to remodel the house and design the interiors. It was to be Macintosh’s last commission as an architect, before he devoted himself to painting in his later years. It is also his only refurbishment project and the only house he worked on outside of his beloved Scotland.

Rennie Macintosh’s creativity reveals itself in the bold colour scheme in the hallway-lounge; imposing black with the bright yellow contrast. A striking room which would have been nothing short of revolutionary in 1917. In fact, it was so bold, Mrs Bassett-Lowke utterly disliked it! Her dislike was strong enough that she asked him to redesign with a lighter colour scheme years later. 

Macintosh must have liked Mrs Bassett-Lowke a great deal, toning down his extreme vision for the house for the kitchen and living room for her sake. Whilst elements of his design signature are apparent in the furniture, the overall feel is more typical of the time. The guest bedroom, on the other hand, displays uncompromising lines, the ceiling almost dizzying to the viewer. 

I hope you feel like you’re nosing around the house from these pictures. The house is celebrating its Centenary this year. 100 years of astonishing design from one of Britain’s greatest architects.  


Courgettes and peas, quintessentially Summer vegetables, in a light salad with the big cooking trend, "quick pickling":
What's your favourite steak sauce? For me, it is peppercorn sauce. But this Stilton sauce from Helen Best-Shaw might change my mind!

Rachel Roddy's baked aubergine with goat's cheese and herbs. A taste of Summer!
Porcini mushroom risotto, a meat free dish for even the most confirmed carnivore:
If you ever find those packs of frozen Swedish meatballs, here's a sauce recipe which compliments them perfectly.
After mentioning Scandi meatballs online, my former student Will sent me this recipe for Danish meatballs:

The "Mustard Seed Cook" Katherine Garner shares three salad dressing recipes, and advises how you can go recipe-free:
Blending different minced meats makes your meatballs achieve a better balance of taste and texture. It's a handy little cooking tip used to good effect in this recipe:

Articles/Know How:

Brits are beginning to take Sake to their hearts. Meet the Peckham couple making their own London version of the iconic Japanese drink:
The long read - why we fell for clean eating. A well researched, well considered examination on the food fad, which although debunked, refuses to die. Enjoy avocados, by all means. But please, eat a balanced diet!
Love travel and food? Some City break ideas for you from a foodie perspective:


What you might have missed at Snig's Kitchen:

New recipe blog post, Puy lentil, lardon and poached egg salad:

My other writing:

My piece on the Supreme Court's quashing of the Employment Tribunal fees regime "Without access to justice, the law is a dead letter". Non-paywall, non-subscription version - free to all!,-the-law-is-a-dead-letter
My latest piece of legal writing. Without access to justice, the law is a dead letter. My analysis of the Supreme Court decision quashing unlawful employment tribunal fees.


The Handmaid’s Tale

Se Quien Eres (I Know Who You Are)

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.