What we’re eating…

Our weekly food diary shares on-trend ingredients, fun foodie events, Instagrammable restaurant dishes and must-try street eats.

This week we tried...

Short rib beer mac & cheese 


If you watched BBC Two’s Million Pound Menu earlier this year, you’ll have drooled as Graham Bradbury showcased his Camden-based Cheese Wheel – fresh, hot pasta stirred into a giant round of Grana Padano to create a sauce. He’s now expanded his cheesy empire to open The Mac Factory pop-up at the Debenhams store on London’s Oxford Street. It’s well worth a visit for its standout dish alone: The Factory Cheese Steak Mac. Fresh macaroni is drenched in a rarebit-like beer cheese sauce (the flour and butter roux is mixed with Birra Moretti instead of milk) and then topped with British beef short-rib, which has been dry-rubbed with spices and smoked over woodchips for five hours. The beef is then mixed with Spanish onions, red, yellow and green peppers and used to top the mac, before being sprinkled with their signature parmesan & thyme crumble and a drizzle of Reds True BBQ sauce. It's heaven in a bowl for a tenner.
 

Tripe 


If seeing the word tripe on a menu fills you with dread, you’re not alone. Like other offal, the idea of tripe (the stomach lining of a cow, pig, sheep or ox) can be off-putting and it’s certainly not for everyone. Enter supper club maestros Felix Reade and Niall Galvin, aka Panhandle, daring to change your opinion. Felix, sous chef at London’s St John restaurant, has recently branched out on his own with Panhandle, which currently has a residency at Great Guns Social in Southwark, London. Part of an impressive five-course tasting menu, this dish reinvents tripe – it’s deep fried, coated in chilli and freeze-dried raspberries and served with radicchio and bagna cauda foam (an Italian dipping sauce traditionally made from anchovies, garlic, butter and olive oil). Felix’s version is aerated to create a light, sumptuous sauce which is both creamy and satisfyingly salty. This is tripe we can get on board with. 
 

Mimolette


This bright orange, dense-textured French hard cheese might seem a bit of an acquired taste when you hear about how it reaches maturity to achieve its salty, sweet, caramel-like flavour. The secret? Mites. Yes, mites – tiny arachnids are introduced to the cheese to nibble away on the rind, which exposes the surface to air and speeds up the maturation process. It might sound unpleasant, but the results are complex and saliva-stimulating. When whole, Mimolette looks like a cantaloupe melon, with a lunar, grey-brown pitted rind. It originates from Lille and is made in a similar way to Edam. We tried it at a Paxton & Whitfield cheese and port pairing evening with Taylor’s port, one of the world’s oldest port houses, founded in 1692.


Tetela 


Put down your avo toast – brunch just got a whole lot more exciting. We’ve been at Mexican restaurant Santo Remedio in London Bridge for the launch of their new brunch menu. It features Mexican favourites, including tacos and chilaquiles as well as this tetela. A speciality of Oaxaca, Mexico, a tetela is made from corn masa that’s hand pressed and filled with black beans and then formed into a triangule. At Santo Remedio, this is covered in mole negro, a dark rich sauce (made with over 30 ingredients including nuts, seeds, dried fruits, chocolate and chllies) and cotija cheese (a hard Mexican cow’s milk cheese). Owners Edson and Natalie Diaz-Fuentes explain: ‘This was our favourite breakfast when we were in Oaxaca City at Criollo restaurant by Chef Luis Arellano. There, they make the tetelas in front of you on a traditional comal (circular metal griddle). Eating them straight from the comal with the smell of freshly toasted masa makes it one of the most delicious breakfasts Mexico. There are so many regional dishes from Mexico that are still not known elsewhere, so we're excited to bring these little parcels of deliciousness to the UK.


Last week we tried...

Lavender sour cocktail

Lavender cocktailBotanical infusions are booming on drinks menus everywhere – and the gin train shows no sign of stopping, with supermarket shelves sporting increasingly daring flavours, from jasmine and rose to festive gingerbread. Lavender is among those flavours seeing a surge in popularity, leaving the confines of your grandmother’s bathroom and entering the foodie universe alongside botanical flavours such as thyme and cardamom. This picture-perfect lavender sour from The Montagu Kitchen takes inspiration from seasonal British produce and hedgerow flavours. We can’t think of a better way to mark the changing of seasons than savouring the last notes of summer with this indulgent floral creation. It’s perfectly balanced, with the lavender complementing – rather than overpowering – the gin to create a wonderfully refreshing tipple.
 

Experiential eating

Mushrooms on logTesco is celebrating the 20th anniversary of its Finest range by collaborating with food alchemists Bompas & Parr to create ‘Devour’, a culinary adventure that celebrates the sensory pleasures of food. Reminiscent of Willy Wonka's chocolate factory, Bompas & Parr has engineered an elaborate setting in which to explore the ingredients and origins of the latest Tesco Finest produce. Prepare to be shrunken like Alice in Wonderland as you enter a giant champagne bottle complete with floating edible bubbles. Embark on a trek through the forest to forage for mushrooms, explore a Himalayan salt mine, encounter coffee in its natural habitat and find out what's hidden at the end of the rainbow. By the end of the evening, guests will have sampled a full meal, from aperitifs to puddings. The event runs 11-13 October at Kachette in Shoreditch. 
 

New kitchen kit

Hummus in bowlIf you're a fan of nifty kitchen kit, read on. We've jumped aboard the latest kitchen craze from the US: the Instant Pot. This popular multi-cooker is an electric pressure cooker, slow cooker, steamer and rice cooker all rolled into one. We experimented with making super silky hummus from dried chickpeas (no need to soak them first) using the pressure cooker function. The result? This creamy dip (left), created in an hour and costing just 30p. Prepare to see the Instant Pot gracing kitchen worktops across the country and watch this space for our review of this handy piece of kitchen equipment, plus some recipe inspiration to get you started. Check out our reviews hub for more foodie gifts and our tried and tested kitchen kit. 


Earlier this month we tried...

Low-waste shopping


With food and plastic waste continuing to hit the headlines, several new low- and zero-waste stores and restaurants have opened across the country. The latest on our radar is Pipoca, a unique new space in Brixton, which is a low-waste food shop and vegan crêperie. The shop sells everything from dried banana chips and cocoa nibs to rice, tea, olive oils and vinegars. Nothing is sold in packets – instead, customers are encouraged to bring their own containers or offered a free reusable jar to fill with whatever you’re buying and paying by the weight. The restaurant, sister to Senzala crêperie in Brixton Village, serves vegan crêpes, galettes, a range of savoury brunch options and smoothies. We enjoyed a savoury gluten-free galette packed with tomato lentils, sweet potato, red onion and olives, and a sweet crêpe with banana, strawberries, nuts and maple syrup. 

 

Sauerkraut


Pickled and fermented foods are still bang on trend, and it shows no signs of slowing down. This week, we tried a range of raw fermented pickles, krauts and sauces from London-based company Eaten Alive, including this smoky pink kraut. Super crunchy with a sour edge and low-level smoky chilli kick, it makes an excellent addition to a wrap stuffed with hummus and falafel or halloumi, or perks up a basic bangers and mash meal. If you roughly chop a spoonful, it can be stirred into soups, too – try a sweetish pumpkin or sweet potato version rather than sharper tomato. The pink colour comes from beetroot and red onion as the cabbage used is white. You need to keep the jar cold as the contents are not heat treated in any way so they are alive – just like it says on the tin.
 

 

Anglo-Thai 


At the recent Young British Foodies’ Awards, we were blown away by the Anglo-Thai dishes from former finalist John Chantarasak. A chef at Thai restaurant Som Saa in London’s Spitalfields, John creates unique fusion dishes using British produce in his spare time. John explains, ‘one of my main passions is cooking a style of food that showcases both sides of my heritage. I’m half Thai and half British, so I’m what Thais call “luk khrueng”.’ This bowl of crispy sprats, herb salad, sea buckthorn & orange chilli was a particular stand-out, and so were the smacked ‘som tam’ cucumbers with chilli & roasted cobnuts; heritage tomatoes, fermented yellow bean & sawtooth coriander; palm sugar braised pork belly, pickled pink scallions & fried shallots; and raw beef, makhwaem ‘laab’ spice & sorrel. Not salivating yet? Find more of John’s amazing creations on Instagram


 

Missed an entry in our food diary? Find out what we've eaten previously...
What we ate in September 2018

What we ate in August 2018
What we ate in July 2018
What we ate in June 2018
What we ate in May 2018
What we ate in April 2018
What we ate in March 2018
What we ate in February 2018
What we ate in January 2018
What we ate in December 2017
What we ate in November 2017
What we ate in October 2017
What we ate in September 2017
What we ate in August 2017
What we ate in July 2017
What we ate in June 2017
What we ate in May 2017
What we ate in April 2017
What we ate in March 2017
What we ate in February 2017
What we ate in January 2017
What we ate in December 2016
What we ate in November 2016
What we ate in October 2016
What we ate in September 2016
What we ate in August 2016
What we ate in July 2016
What we ate in June 2016
What we ate in May 2016
What we ate in April 2016
One year of food trends

Comments, questions and tips

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fkeates's picture
fkeates
27th Aug, 2018
Even better than plastic free tea bags is loose leaf tea... apart from the packaging to hold the leaves - which can be paper depending where bought - there's no other packaging to deal with. Far better for the environment.
marthamydear
22nd May, 2017
What is unappealing about the ramen pic is that the egg white looks raw...I assume it'll cook in the (hopefully) hot broth? I always love a runny yolk, but NOT raw egg white! :-)
Craig McKee
9th May, 2016
Are there links to these recipes?
selimcan22's picture
selimcan22
27th Oct, 2016
cheese bread is very tasty. My place for breakfast every morning.
HarrietONeill95
18th Mar, 2016
Normally a fan of the sweet/savoury combo (bacon and banana toasted sandwich was my epiphany) but the bacon hot cross bun is wrong. Keep 'em a sweet treat!
heidigough
24th Jan, 2016
I don't know who is doing the PR for Shuang Shuang but they've pulled a blinder. They seem to be everywhere this weekend, not always positively reviewed though.
kfurber
2nd Oct, 2015
Love these articles, please keep them coming!
aveyard
21st Aug, 2015
Would like to try the Blackberry Bakewell recipe, but couldn't find a link. Is it available, please?
woodie1234
11th Jul, 2015
Where are the recipes for these delicious looking treats??
goodfoodteam's picture
goodfoodteam
11th May, 2016
Thank you for your feedback. This page is a visual diary of food and drink trends made or spotted by the Good Food team on their travels. We don't create recipes for these as sometimes they are a product, an experiment in our Test Kitchen or are made especially by another chef or producer. However, if we spot a key trend we think you’ll love we will develop it into a recipe – so let us know if there’s something you’d like to see more of!
Be the first to suggest a tip for this recipe...Got your own twist on this recipe? Or do you have suggestions for possible swaps and additions? We’d love to hear your ideas.