Saturday, 23 October 2010

Bombay Bites - Curry Heaven in Leicester

Today we got wet. Very wet. It even hailed on us. 

We were at the Leicester Tigers rugby game against Bath Rugby.

I managed to stay warm throughout the downpours due to my very satisfying lunch. We went to Bombay Bites. It's a takeaway curry shop in Leicester with a small counter and great food.

The service is fantastic and the box meals make great lunches. You can get all sorts of boxes, including ones with chips instead of rice. We had a no. 2 box which comes with two kinds of curries, bread and rice all packaged in a cute box and under £4.

The curry itself can be ordered with sweet, medium, spicy or hot sauce. I went for a medium which was fragrant and warming without being over spicy. The meat was tender, well cooked and flavoursome.


They also do many other dishes, which I'll certainly be back to try. These include wraps for lunch and delivery locally.

The rating
I'd heartily recommend it if you're looking for a a tasty meal and you're in Leicester. 

The summary
Food Curry Heaven
Price Bargain (under a fiver for a lunch / dinner box)
Atmosphere Quick, cheerful and competent service

Bombay Bites
41a Belvoir Street 0116 285 22 99 or 194 Evington Road 0116 273 33 00 

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

The Willow Tree pub, West Bridgford

It's been a good week for eating out this week! My Husband had a friend around on Saturday evening so we met up at the pub after the boys had had their 'man time'.

The Willow Tree is a lovely adult based pub (children over 14 allowed when dining). It's a clean, comfortable atmosphere with enough nooks to be cosy and enough space to be roomy.

Dinners are exactly what you ordered, tasty pub classics with a few world food specials.

I had a bacon and cheese burger which came with plenty of chips. It was a large, well cooked burger within a decent sized bun. For pudding, a childhood favourite, chocolate and vanilla ice cream sundae with chocolate sauce and chocolate brownies. Yummy.

And I understand from the boys that the beer (guest ale) is good too.

The rating
Comfortable pub dining, great portions and well priced.

The summary
Food: Pub grub with world specials
Price: Cheap (mains around £8, puddings £3)
Atmosphere: Homely and grown-up


01159 233167

Rufford Way, West Bridgford, Nottingham, NG2 6LS

Sunday, 17 October 2010

New look blog

I have been quite active on the blog this weekend. Hope you like the photos and the new-look I have gone for. See you soon!

Making my own food

I have been inspired over the past couple of years by my mother in-law to make jam, chutney and elderflower champagne.

Despite liking food enough to blog about it I am a rubbish everyday cook. I like (as my husband calls it) "play cooking". 

Once introduced to the possibility of jam-making and with my first attempts last year a success I have embarked on a whole range of home-cooked goodness this year.

I am unashamedly proud of this....I made grown up fizzy pop. And it's actually fizzy! Elderflower champagne. Yum. This one is great. It is a light, sparkling drink with a summery taste and delicate scent. Although made from elderflower heads it doesn't smell too flowery, just fresh and slightly sweet. Embarrassingly easy to make (just bung a few elderflower heads in sugar-water overnight with the zest of a lemon, bottle and leave) it's delicious and will definitely be made in far larger quantities next year.

I have also made jam, jelly and chutney this year. I adore how the boiling lava that is heated fruit and sugar becomes jam (or chutney) and I delight in making the lids of the jars 'pop' shut with their safety button all in place. I currently have a nice little row of chilli apple chutney, orange jam and redcurrant jelly sparkling at me from my kitchen shelves. See....

If anyone is encouraged to have a try, please do. Just google a recipe, put on your apron and have a go. Pay no heed to the websites that say you have to have some special canning or sterilising equipment, I have found plenty of boiling water over your jars tipped out immediately before you put the contents in works fine. Good luck!

Corporate Schmoozin' at Harts Upstairs

This week's Wednesday night dinner evening was out of the ordinary in that we ate at the rather lovely Harts upstairs restaurant, but as part of a corporate event.

The pre-dinner speaker was warm, engaging and brief which is exactly what you need when you've not yet been fed and it is after 7pm!

We had a delicious 4-course menu.

Goats cheese tartlets
Beef medallion, mashed potatoes, green beans and gravy
Ginger creme brulee
Cheese and biscuits

I normally can't eat more than 2 courses, however the portion sizes were such that I ate 3 of the 4 courses (I had grapes instead of cheese and biscuits) without feeling over-full. 

The goat's cheese tartlets were tasty, but nothing out of the ordinary. The beef main course was cooked well to suit the mass-catering nature of the event, and was accompanied by dark, wine-enriched gravy which pulled the whole thing together. I was (no-one will be shocked at this) most impressed with the creme brulee. 

Normally I am the kind of person that does not like creme brulee messed about with. I do not like fruit included, I don't like fancy sauces etc etc. I am prepared to go back on that now. The ginger flavour was included in the thick, crunchy sugar topping and was warm, rich and a perfect foil to the cool, thick cream below. I stand corrected. Mr pastry chef - you did good!

The rating
If only all mass catering were like this!

The summary
Food: European classic
Price: No idea - this was a catered event!
Atmosphere: Tasteful decor that allows for a convivial atmosphere without being overpowering, swift and discreet waiting service

Standard Hill
Park Row

Wedding details

I love weddings!

I love everyone getting dressed up to celebrate together and the care that goes into planning.

Congratulations K&N on your wedding and thanks for asking us along to celebrate it with you.

My favourite non-person pic from the day is this lovely table can see the sunshine streaming in even in this one!

A walk and a picnic on a perfect Autumn day

We had a lovely weekend and both had a day off work to attend my workmate's wedding.

The day before the wedding was beautiful and we had decided to go for a walk up the Old Man of Coniston . This being England we had packed all of the necessary outfits (scarf, hat, gloves, several jumpers and waterproofs). The day was lovely, warm and sunny so we needed only a fraction of the layers that we brought. Amazingly for the Lakes I didn't even need to get my waterproofs out of the bag!

We had a lovely picnic for lunch and sat eating with a view of the hills round us. 

I had been told that the views from the top were amazing, but unfortunately by the time we had approached the top this was the view:

Yup, not much to see! It never fails to amaze me how much the weather on the hills can change so quickly.

Once we got down from the top we were once again back into warm sunshine and  we had a lovely paddle in a stream. The numbing cold water over your feet is really refreshing!

Monday, 4 October 2010

It's ladies night.....Revolution Vodka Bar Cornerhouse

Ok so I am not one for going into Nottingham on a Friday night. This week's exception to the rule was for a pre-wedding party for a workmate.
The wedding is on Saturday - best wishes to the happy couple.
Well. This Friday saw me at the Revolution Vodka bar at 6.30pm. We ate here after all registering online to get 2 for 1 food. We had a number of vouchers between us.
Food is bar basics, pizza burgers and wraps etc. Vodka sticks and cocktail pitchers were also 2 for 1 until 9pm.
Not so much for the non-drinker. Not even a hint of a mocktail. Boo.

The rating
Plentiful, tasty and cheap food. Drinks are alcoholic, no interesting ones for non drinkers.

The summary
Food: Bar basics
Price: Cheap with our 2 for 1 our bill came to £5 each
Atmosphere: Pre-party with some diners who had clearly been on the raz for a while!


Sunday, 3 October 2010 regular dining buddy

Okay so this post has a little more interest to it in that I am introducing my charming, modest, intelligent (did I get that all in?) dining partner. 

Who happens to be single. 

I'd love to matchmake so.......

Here he is:

Rugby matches
Football / cricket
White Wine
Lemon-based puddings

Red Wine
Cheese in soup

Okay so this week we went French. Le Bistrot Pierre. We booked in advance in the afternoon as it's a popular spot and even on a weekday just turning up can lead to you being turned away (boo).

They had a good specials board but we went for the £13.50 2 course pre theatre menu.

It was a lovely experience, nice cosy environment full of chatter. The service was excellent, plenty of time for you to decide on your dinner and once you had decided lightening quick in bringing the drinks and the food. 

It was raining.

It was dark.

I was feeling wintry.

So to match my mood I had 'Le Bourguignon'. The meal was great. A nice and big bowl of bourguignon supplemented by gratin potatoes, shredded cabbage and broccoli. Very tasty. The sauce was thick and rich with the meat disintegrating under my fork. A hearty and flavourful dish done very well.

By the time it had got to pudding I was feeling much less wintry and had their version of Eton mess. Light and fruity it finished the meal well.

It had even stopped raining when we left.
On the table there was a booklet on their themed six course dinner evenings and 3 course dine with wine events, both reasonably priced at under £30 a head. I've never been to one of these but am tempted.

The rating
Enjoyable. Excellent French food served quickly and without airs.

The summary
Food = French regional
Price = Cheap (2 course dinner weekdays for £13.50)
Atmosphere: Warm, welcoming and convivial.

Le Bistrot Pierre - several locations available.
13-17 Milton Street, Nottingham, NG1 3EN. 0115 941 2850.