Busy week and a long weekend in Sweden!

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Last week was short for me as I managed to take Friday off work. Such a treat! But it meant the work week was really busy. But in a good way. When you feel efficient and in control.

One evening I met up with my friend Malin who was in town from New York, and we had a lovely dinner and catch-up at Granger & Co in Chelsea.

On Thursday I had a quick drink at a colleague’s leaving do before going to the airport and the south of Sweden.

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I had a lovely four days there visiting my parents and it was just wonderful. The weather was amazing (like summer!) and we had barbecues and ate lots of berries and ice cream and just took it easy.

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It was such a needed break for me and good to catch up with my dear parents, as it’s been a while since we saw each other. There’s lots on Instagram from my weekend away but I will post some new recipes here soon to. Stay tuned…

 

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All the food; both home cooking and eating out!

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Last week was rather full on, but in the best possible way! Monday I mainly prepped for the day after when I had my friends Gaby and Ro over for dinner after work. For once I wasn’t rushed and it was such a nice feeling. We started with nibbles; obviously Jamon Iberico and saucisson from Spain, nice olives and my homemade dill hummus with pitta chips.

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Then I served trout fillets with dilly new potatoes and a lovely sauce for fish and finished the dinner off with dulce de leche pannacotta. Gaby also brought a selection of canelés from Babelle that were amazing!

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My childhood friend Therése arrived from Sweden on Thursday evening and we had dinner together at mine while chatting away. I made a selection of tapas including the Jamon Iberico and saucisson, Nocellara olives (our favourite!), Manchego and Ossau Iraty cheese, padron peppers, calamari and my asparagus with wild garlic mayonnaise.

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On Friday we met after work and had a speedy but delicious dinner at Barrafina Drury Lane before going to the theatre around the corner to see 42nd Street.

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Saturday was lovely and sunny, so we put our sunglasses on and went shopping in Chelsea where we also had lunch. A pit stop at home to change and we were off to dinner. We had amazing sushi that I will tell you all about later and finished the evening with champagne at Kettner’s Townhouse.

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Therése’s last full day here we went back to an old favourite for lunch; La Fromagerie in Marylebone. The food, the cheese and the ambience is just a winning combination.

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In the evening I made us a nice chicken salad and we had ice cream and chocolate chip cookies for pudding. It was such a lovely weekend and I’m so grateful my friends make the effort to visit me while living abroad!

 

 

London: dinner at my new favourite pub!

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I’ve already told you about the lovely Sand’s End pub that I lived near for several years. They have a sister pub (and restaurant) in Chelsea, and as I suspected it to be just as good, I took my friends Maria and Daniel and their children there for dinner when they were visiting.

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And I couldn’t have found a better day to show off this cosy gem of a pub! It was absolutely freezing this Saturday and as we walked into the warmth of the pub and the saw the roaring fire and the water bowls for the dogs we felt right at home.
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All of us (apart from maybe the toddler) were cold and hungry so we quickly ordered drinks and some deliciously lemony hummus and toasted foccacia.

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Then we had a hard time choosing from the menu, and in the end decided on the burger for all of us – to avoid food envy! But the rest of the menu looked great too.

It came with lovely triple-cooked chips and had a celeriac remoulade in the burger, which was lovely, but I would have liked a little bit more sauce. Otherwise it was great; nice patty and a good brioche bun.

The Cross Keys, 1 Lawrence Street, Chelsea, London SW3 5NB

Almost spring (?) and visitors from home!

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The past week was full-on busy but in a good way! I made sure to celebrate pancake day in both a British and Swedish manner.

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There were savoury pancakes (with cheddar, pancetta, chives and avocado for example) and sweet ones (with nutella, whipped cream and raspberries) and of course a Swedish cream bun (fastlagsbulle) from Swedish bakery Bageriet.

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On Thursday my dear friends Maria and Daniel and their two children arrived in London so I met up with them in the evening for a quick burger at Fire Station and a catch up.

On Friday after work we met up again for a longer dinner at Tredwells, which was as child friendly as I had hoped. In fact all places we ate at were very child friendly.

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On Saturday Maria and I left Daniel to look after the kids while we went to the V&A and the fabulous Balenciaga exhibition. I’ve wanted to see it since it came on ages ago, and am so happy I managed to see it just before it ended.

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Afterwards we treated ourselves to some cupcakes at Hummingbird bakery, a little tradition of ours.

In the evening it got cold (compared to 10C and sunshine during the day) so it was perfect with dinner in the cosiest of pubs, complete with dogs (and dog treats), a fire place and comfort food.

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Yesterday we had a nice relaxed lunch at Whyte & Brown in Kingly Court before we hit the shops on Regent Street and Carnaby Street and even ventured into Hamleys (phew).

It was so lovely to spend so much time with my lovely friends! It’s far more relaxed when my friends come here than when I go home and try to make time for everyone. Such a treat!

 

Revisiting Kurobuta, Chelsea

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A Saturday a looong time ago now, Caroline and I met up for dinner in Chelsea. We hadn’t booked anywhere but wanted Japanese and when we tried Kurobuta they luckily had space for us at the communal table.

I’d only been to Kurobuta once before this, when it was still a pop-up at a different location on the Kings Road, but the permanent space is so much better. The ambiance feels more restaurant-y and the food is just as good – if not even better!

A group at our communal table were eating the tempura prawns when we arrived, they looked really good so it was the first thing we ordered. They were nice and crispy on the outside but the prawn within was still nice and juicy and the onions and chilli worked well with the prawns and the delicious mayo. The fried white shreds underneath the prawns were not that nice, but at least it looked nice!

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Our next dish was these a-ma-zing wagyu beef sliders with steamed buns, crispy onion, pickled cucumber and umami mayo. Sooo good and my favourite dish this evening!

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The wellowtail sashimi was nice but a little too wet for my liking as it was resting in a pool of yuzu and soy.

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Also the maki roll with spicy tuna was a bit of a let down. It was lacking a bit in flavour and all the spice came from the sauce on top, not from the roll itself..

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But we absolutely loved the grilled miso chicken! Nice charred flavour from the grill and it was perfectly cooked.

Despite not finding all the dishes perfect, I do really enjoy coming here. The food is always good and some dishes are excellent. And compared tp many other restaurants offering Japanese small dishes or Asian fusion this is one of the better! Just promise me you try the Wagyu slider, and you’ll see what I mean!

Kurobuta, 312 Kings Road, London SW3 5UH 

Tom’s Kitchen, Chelsea – revisited

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Tom’s Kitchen is one of those homely restaurants, almost with a pub feel, serving nice food you can count on. It’s basically where I want to go when I don’t want to go to a fancy restaurant. And it was exactly where my parents and I wanted to go on their last evening in town in September, when we after a long day of exploring London just wanted to sit down to a really nice meal but without the fuss.

It was fairly quiet at the restaurant that Sunday evening, but the staff was getting ready to pack the restaurant in boxes for refurbishment.

We started with a lovely dressed crab and toasted bread to start. We all love seafood and one each. Such a treat!

Mum and I continued the seafood theme and had fried lemon sole with seaweed butter, with potato mash and spinach on the side. I forgot to take a picture, but the fish was truly lovely. I was just a bit annoyed as we had to wait about 10 minutes for the sides, and had to remind the staff. But once it had all arrived on the table we had a lovely meal.

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Dad had the burger, which is really really nice, and enjoyed it immensely! The service could have been a bit more focused this evening, but the food was great!

Tom’s Kitchen, 27 Cale St, London SW3 3QP

Dinner at Bibendum, Chelsea

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Spring has been fairly busy (how is it almost July already?!) But it’s been a nice time; as I’ve had weekends away and friends visiting. At the latest visit we went to a real classic London restaurant in Chelsea that I have wanted to try for a while; Bibendum. I’m a big fan of Simon Hopkinson’s cooking style (he is one of the owners and used to be the head chef here).

The food is still very much of the same style; classic British and French dishes all cooked very well. Some dishes are simple and some are technically challenging but all the produce is top quality regardless. I like the mix of sophistication on the plate and smart casual laid-back ambiance in the restaurant.

2015-05-30 20.50.52We had a nice long meal and almost all three of us had three courses. To start Mirja and I were very happy with out choice of scallop and crab lasagne with beurre blanc and chives. Delicious!
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Linus had the jamon iberico and cantaloupe and received a nice big portion. Amazing ham!

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For her maincourse Mirja had the chicken supreme with creamed spinach and jus with fries on the side. It was (again) a very generous portion – and really nice!

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Linus and I had the pork’s cheek (super tender) with jus, asparagus, broad beand and peas.

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And creamy mash on the side. It was a great dish and all three of us needed a little breather before pudding.

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Linus had the most chocolaty chocolate fondant (it was pure perfection) with chocolate sauce, caramel ice cream and honeycomb.

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I couldn’t wait to try Queen of Puddings (my first time), here made with gooseberries and it was just as nice as I had expected. Mirja felt rather defeated after her chicken but shared our puddings.

We had a lovely evening here and thoroughly enjoyed everything that was put in front of us, from the olives and parmesan biscuits to bread, starter, main and pudding. And wine! I honestly can’t wait to go back!

Bibendum, Michelin House, 81 Fulham Road, London SW3 6RD