Tag Archives: lovely food

Back to Britain

I've been back in the UK for about 3 days now, and, while I'm missing Paris an awful lot, I'm also enjoying being back with my family, and trying to organise the Durham-based next year. There are some flipping amazing adventures to be had in that tiny city.

Today I discovered an incredible ice cream parlour in Northumberland. Wheelbirks is a dairy farm in the middle of the best countryside in, well, the country. They have the oldest, and the only pedigree Jersey herd in Northumberland, and those are some gorgeous cows. The parlour is in a converted barn, and it is stunning. All ice cream is made at the farm, from milk from the Jersey cows.

Adorable table names.

The menu is great – the ploughman's lunch is served with an impressive wodge of cheese, but I couldn't resist the ice cream. Flavours included apple & caramel, maple & pecan praline, peach & raspberry, wild cherry, and a delicious jersey cream. I had maple & pecan and jersey cream, and it was the biggest ice cream I've ever eaten. Incredible.

Boy had wild cherry with peach & raspberry.

Out of the back of the café is an orchard with a wee play area, lots of space for sitting in the sunshine, and some very happy looking chickens. There's also space to visit and coo over the calves from a small distance. A little shop in the parlour stocks local treats. My favourites were the woven baskets, and I couldn't resist some unperfumed honey and beeswax lip balm, made in Berwick-upon-Tweed, which is not very far away at all. Milk from the herd and pints of the delicious ice cream are also available to purchase and enjoy at home.

I love my satchel, and this Union Jack printed chesterfield.

I also love the pictures on the wall, from the early days of the farm (one is from 1936!)
My Father's cycle club were here today as their rest stop mid-ride. I've never seen so many bikes. It was a thing of beauty.

I am fairly certain that Wheelbirks is going to become my new go-to place for all of my ice cream cravings.

Just beautiful.

 

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Filed under Home sweet home, Travels, Very good food

Here comes the sun…

And other cheesy blog post titles.

Summer arrived with all guns blazing in Paris in early April. Now she seems to be hiding. I managed to get a little bit of tanning time (in the Parc Monceau – oh how I love you), and plenty of iced coffee and reading in the sunshine time. Now I’m just waiting for her to come back.

My favourite summer spot so far, aside from the aforementioned Parc Monceau, is the Canal St-Martin. Sitting on the edge, dangling my legs over the water, with an excellent coffee (my favourite in that area, of course, is Ten Belles) and a book is perfect.IMG_1796

This is my happy place. And those are my happy trousers. They look like pyjamas.

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This is another of my new favourite places, the Jardin du Palais Royal. It’s hidden away in the very centre of Paris, and always has a couple of lovely garden seats available. You know the ones, people fight over them in the summer in the Tuileries, and the Jardin du Luxembourg. You can always get a seat behind the Palais Royal.

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The Tuileries look beautiful at this time of year. Even if you can’t get a seat. It’s a popular spot for a reason. Go for a quick walk, then settle with your book elsewhere, away from the crowds.

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And we come full circle (triangle?) back to the Canal St-Martin. It’s great, if you can fight your way to a spot to sit in. If the sun around midday gets too hot (wishful thinking?) go sit inside at ten belles. They sell great soup. I had a really good non-Cornish pasty once, as well. The other, very popular alternative, is to order Pink Flamingo pizza, and have them deliver it to you at your perfect picnic spot. Yeah.

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Hurry back, sunshine.

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Filed under I love, Paris, Touristing, Very good food

Is this the best burger in Newcastle? Part one: ARLO

I think it probably is. As far as I can tell, the Newcastle food scene isn’t exactly brilliant. There were 2 pretty good burgers to be eaten there, though. And we ate them in very quick succession (2 nights in a row. It felt good.) The first was in a cute tiny place I found by googling “food+jesmond” since I figured Jesmond was the place for a food revolution, if one was happening. We walked in the rain for about half an hour to find it. It was well worth the walk and the hunger – I thought boy was going to pass out.

ARLO is well designed, and was packed out when we arrived, at about 12:30. The barista station had a huge pile of amazing tempting cakey goodies piled up on top of it, which I succumbed to once the burger had been eaten. Nobody asked how the burgers were to be cooked, so they weren’t as pink in the middle as I would have liked, but they came quickly, and with a pile of amazing home fries, skin on, as they should be.

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Couldn’t resist taking a bite before I remembered to take a picture…

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There was also a board of hummus, crudites, tzatziki, and pittas. I’m not sure how I feel about the serving-on-chopping-boards thing. Yes, it’s very photogenic, but it’s also getting a little old, don’tcha think?

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Fries and chutney. Yes.

Since we were in Newcastle, here is a token photo of my beautiful bunboy.

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He gets more handsome every single day.

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Filed under Burgers, Home sweet home, Very good food

Living local

One of my favourite things about France is how easy it is to live within a tiny radius of your home, and never want for anything. It takes less than a minute to walk from my front door to a fishmonger, butcher, greengrocer, florist, cheesemonger (is that what they’re called?), 2 very good boulangeries, one average boulangerie, and about 4 bistros. There is a supermarket, too, but why bother with a supermarket when you can go to the knowledgeable source?

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Why would I leave my neighbourhood when there are such beauties on my doorstep?

I love exploring Paris, and I really love that there is so much of it to explore, but knowing that I can go buy bread baked around the corner freshly each day is a joy. I can’t wait until I can bake my own bread! Also, the greengrocer man is the absolute friendliest. He always has a hello and a smile when I walk past, and the asparagus in his shop is the nicest I’ve had in France.

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About 15 minutes from my house on foot is the most beautiful park in Paris. The Parc Monceau is especially lovely right now, with all of the flowers, and the sunshine, and the people enjoying the flowers and the sunshine. It’s my favourite.

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Yep, Paris looks goooood right now.

In other news, we were at the Jardin d’Acclimatation recently (another local joy), and there were bagpipers! I think they were part of a Brittany celebration (do they have bagpipes in Brittany?). Bagpipes follow me everywhere. And they aren’t subtle about it.

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Filed under I love, Paris, Phototastic, Travels

Is this the best burger in Paris? Part two: Koff

Burger joint number two is the wonderful Koff, which hides out in Montmartre. Boy was visiting for two weeks, and we went on quite the burger binge. One Sunday lunchtime, we were starving and wandering around Montmartre, when I realised Koff was around the corner, and I still hadn't tried it out. Winner.

Unfortunately Koff hasn't got a website, so I can't check a menu for our choices. I had a bacon cheeseburger (I think), and boy had a blue cheese covered burger. We ordered both rare, and that's how they came. Anglophone rare, not French rare, but that's pink enough for me. I had the best fries of my life – why doesn't everyone leave the skins on the potatoes? It's so much better that way. Boy had a GIANT hash brown. It was also delightful, but I think the fries were better.

Both burgers were excellent, toppings were great, and buns held together just the way they're supposed to. We didn't go for any sides this time, just a diet coke for me and a Canadian ginger beer for boy. Good choices all round.

Not ordering sides meant we had room for dessert. We shared a banoffee pie. I think I actually ate most of it, but boy was nice enough to pretend we split it evenly. It was delicious. Unfortunately it wasn't very photogenic. Sorry.

Then it was time for tea and coffee and a lovely walk.

The End.

 

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Filed under Burgers, Paris, Very good food

Hieronymus Euripedes tells it like it is

When I was young (cough 16 cough) my imaginary baby name short list contained, among other questionables, Hieronymus Euripedes. I named all of my instruments (nerd alert), but it was too soon after everyone I'd mentioned it to had told me that it was a mild form of child abuse to throw away my dear baby names on mere instruments. Enter the age of the iDevice, and I have a number of wonderful inanimate objects to give the names of my childhood dream children. Ideal.

Hieronymus Euripedes is a much better teller of stories than I am, even if I play with his narrative too much with Instagram filters.

Here are some of his recent shorts.

Box of bunnies, anyone? I was tempted.
It snowed, and Montmartre wore it well.

And then it was beautifully sunny and Notre Dame was fit.

I bought myself flowers, and was taught a little bit about flower arranging. Picking flowers to go together is really hard. And I'm really bad at it.

And then I ate the best burger of my life. So far. More on that later.

In other news, I've been watching and rewatching Buffy season 2, and, spoiler alert, the death of Jenny Calendar is always a heartbreaker. I can't even talk about Becoming, parts 1 and 2, because they are tearjerkers like nothing else.

 

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Filed under I love, Paris, Rambly ramble, Travels, Very good food

I’m a graduand!

This week I (finally) finished my degree. Hooray!

It’s also been super gorgeous in Edinburgh, I feel like everyone’s celebrating. Probably because they are. I’ve had a relaxing couple of days, with BBQ-ing (boy made tuna and ginger burgers, they were SO GOOD), walking in the sunshine, and a whole lot of champagne. Now there will be a whole lot of photos. Later today I hope to share a vintage fair story.

Congraduations (anyone? no?)

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Filed under Domestic Goddess, Edinburgh, I love, Lovely folk, Phototastic, Very good food