that thing you do: a quick breakfast at home

berry tartelette - how do you do that
How do you do that? she asked, that funny look on her face.

Do what?

“That! That thing. you’ve done it again. creating something from nothing, making stuff like this…”

What are you talking about?

“I’ve just been to that fridge, couldn’t have been more than ten minutes ago – it was almost empty”

Well, there were a couple of things in there, you know. I thought we’d grab a quick breakfast at home before heading out.

“I know, but I don’t remember seeing all THIS stuff!”

You’ve just got to look for it and see what you can create. You see, I know how to look for it and make something that should work well together.

(She seemed suitably impressed, or at least my explanation convinced her I didn’t have a secret second fridge hidden away in the back)

I continued, feeling invincible now, i mean – everyone’s got these almond tart shells around – they’ll keep for days – hmmm, they are so good. And I just covered them with a little

white chocolate, you know, that one you nibble all the time when you’re reading?
(Without sharing, I wanted to add). and this is what to do next

best chocolate in the world

distant love
You me and the universe…

…the eternal story.

there’s not always a happy ending, is there?

it doesn’t always happen that way. The way you dream it would

so, there’s no Prince or frog to kiss ,
and,
there’s not going to be a princess in the tower calling your name
not
even a sleeping beauty with long flowing hair, waiting for you to wake her up

things don’t work that way, do they?
and
here they are fixed for all time:
so
he, on a frozen vanilla ice cream world, it slowly turns yet never melts
a perfectly formed icy orb spinning gracefully.

she, on the chocolate planet – this is the good stuff, the place where the best chocolate in the world comes from

watching each other from afar, knowing there’s no future together,
understanding that this is the way their lives will always be – spinning through the universe Continue Reading

Cutting cakes correctly

the elephant …and everything freezes, I can still hear the hustle and bustle of the kitchen, waiters rushing by with their trays, the chef shouting for the sauce, plates on the passe ready to be whisked away, something bubbling on the back burner, something else sizzling at the front, the oven alarm sounds, it’s the cue to bring everything together, a synchronised motion of the entire kitchen team to get the plates out into the dining room.

this time, things don’t go to plan. Slowly the crowd is forming around me. Continue Reading

winter cake and sandwiches

closed for winter

I was busy that morning, so I couldn’t talk too long when she called.

There was a new menu item that no one had even SEEN before, let alone ever tasted, so I really need to get it prepared immediately. After that, served to all the staff and managers and make sure they knew exactly what it was they were trying to sell!

I remember one waitress telling a customer that Eton Mess was “just like strawberries, cream and meringues that had fallen on the floor and you’d scooped them back up onto the plate before anyone saw you”. No, actually that was a real story, not something I’d heard from a friend of a friend…

“So, what time are you free?” she asked. We arranged to meet at that little French place ‘Le Pul’ or something, it was called. They served cake and sandwiches – good coffee, too. Pretty central and not too far from my place. I didn’t really feel like going to a restaurant that evening, I was probably going to be  preparing and eating new dishes most of the day so wouldn’t be hungry at all anyway.

I’d been there a couple of times. First of all, the visa place was right across the street so I’d waited here while they went through to make sure all my paperwork was in order. One time I had spent the morning in the museum and was starving and found a tasty sandwich that was made well. Continue Reading

not all who wander are lost

logoIf you take a quick look at the logo at the top of the page with the tag line ‘cook your way round the world’, you’ll notice straightaway how it differs from the one in the picture at the top of this post (look lower! Yes there! That’s better!)

It took me a while to think of the original idea, the logo, the colours and the ‘tag line’ which was rather adventurous-sounding:’not all who wander are lost’ – I am master of my destiny! Took me half the night to put together the logo itself on a unknown photo editing programme, because I’d never done anything like that before. It had a hint of travel, adventure, explorer and a generally enviable lifestyle in exotic locations but all with a greater purpose. Continue Reading

the missing mango macarons

mango macaron

When I woke up the next morning, she had already gone…

She was sitting in the corner, deep in her magazine, one of those glossy ones, with the cool clothes. She looked up just as I was passing by, smiled briefly and went back to her reading.

Back in the kitchen, we were deep in checks that would keep us busy for the next hour and when things were calmer I grabbed my knives, cleaned up, changed and made my way to the front door. I liked going through the main dining room on the way out, and not the back entrance, just to see what was going on, if everything was more or less OK and if there was anyone I knew to sit and have a coffee with. Today, no one, and I was in no mood to sit and chat, just too wiped out.

She was still there, and she stood up as I walked by. “Are you going to leave without talking to me?” read more to find out what I answered