Posted by: Stephlechef | February 9, 2011

A food history

This is something I’ve been thinking of doing for a while, a bit of self-indulgent food remembering from the last year or so. I have a load of photos of food (that I seem to take a lot of) but nothing much to do with them. Here is perfect.

So where shall we start?

For those who don’t know (as I don’t know WHO reads this?) I spent a year abroad from uni last year, 7 months in a teeny town in France called Le Puy, and 3 months in Madrid in Spain. And here are some foody adventures. I didn’t have a blog then, I wasn’t very thorough. Now I’ve got an outlet!

This is from pre-France, when I went to London with Charlotte, and we had a very cheap day apart from (admittedly buy one get one free) cupcakes in Covent Garden, from Ella’s Bakehouse (which I believe is owned by the woman who does that baking program on BBC2 at the moment)

Lovely lovely red velvet. I also seem to remember we attempted to make these… without huge success. I still think entire bottles of food colouring in a recipe can’t be a good idea…

In France I was a cake whore. It’s not my fault, practically every 5th shop was a patisserie. And oh so good. I’m really sad I never got pictures of the dinky pink brioches I used to buy from the boulangerie-with-no-fixed-opening-hours, but here are a few of the delights I sampled.

A lovely almondy tarte aux poires

And a tarte aux fruits and chocolate gateau. Half each is always the way to go.

Apart from all the cream and cake delights, there was also the most adorable little coffee shop (which smells incredible and made this non-coffee drinker immediately want to become an addict), which also did luscious hot chocolates. I don’t know why we didn’t go here more.

You can’t see it here, but they also had hearts/clubs/diamonds/spades sugar “cubes”. Naw.

One of my supervisor teachers gave me a Christmas present from this place, she gave me Verveine confit (Verveine (verbena) is like the big “thing” in Le Puy, it’s made into a drink, a food, a soap…), Verveine sirop/cordial and a huge packet of coffee (which obviously I gave to my dad :)) and some dinky little chocolates. It sat in my room before I went home for Christmas, just looking adorable.

Le Puy also had the most gorgeous market every Saturday morning (which, I am proud to admit, I got up in time for every week except TWO!) and although it wasn’t cheap, it was such gorgeous quality. And as I couldn’t do any baking, salads and fruit got a BIG look in. Maybe we can see why I was skinny last year…

Bit sad, I know, but that veg is too beautiful to ignore.


My birthday cake!

Now onto Spain’s efforts. A lovely salad in a restaurant unfortunately placed right on the side of a busy road.

Nevertheless, very nice: smoked salmon, brie and cornichons (I can’t remember the English for cornichon)

I am very sad that I don’t have a picture of the salad I ate incessantly in Le Puy, it was so so good.

These are gorgeous tapas-sized sandwiches from “100 montaditos” in Madrid. I can HIGHLY recommend. A choice of 100 different fillings (including sweet ones) and (on Wednesdays) are only a euro each. And they do lovely boozy sangria-type drinks too. Oof.

My only paella in Spain… and it gave me a month of food poisoning. This restaurant I don’t recommend. But I also don’t remember what it was called.

Little dinky doughnuts, literally “to die for”, as proclaimed on the packaging.

Fish tapas. The cheapest thing in a very expensive (but ohhhh so good) tapas place. I’ve forgotten the name of it. I am a useless tour guide.

This one just because the brand is funny.

And just to show that I’m not too exotic, crab sandwiches in Cromer.

And some sugar mice 🙂

And to go back to the Spanish theme, La Tasca in Leeds

And thus concludes a year of food. Well, what I remembered to take pictures of.  I think the thing is, the best things get forgotten because I am so busy eating them. Oh well. I will get better at remembering. Surtout the names of restaurants I am dissing.



  1. Love eeeet!

    Oh and the English for cornichon is….cornichon 🙂

    • Is it really? Oh. Haha, I did have a think and thought maybe they are the same as gherkins?

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