THE BREAKFAST CLUB

Hello everyone. Hope you’ve all been doing well and enjoying how fast this year is going! I’m back with another post about my trip to The Breakfast Club.

Location: It was located in Angel, Camden with a less than 5 minute walk from Angel station. It is also a short bus journey from Kings Cross station.

Settings: Amazing! Lovely and warm atmosphere with the smell of food meeting you outside the door before you even entered. It fitted the Islington scene – old and rustic. It also had a homely feel, that helps you to feel immediately comfortable in the restaurant. The tables-for-two- were quite small and put together, so when all our food came it was a struggle to put it all together, however bigger tables can be requested, and for those with a bigger party.

They have vibrate settings of orange and yellows and browns. These colours, I feel, bring the place alive and brighten the place up.

Service: We were seated fairly quickly and we were catered form quickly and efficiently. If I needed a member of staff, there was always someone floating around to cater for what I was asking for. The service was fast and efficient and would make you want to visit countless times – something I plan to do soon!

On to the good stuff!

Main: “The All American” – £11.40 – Tinu’s sore – 4.5/5

The plate included pancakes, eggs, sausage, potatoes and with a small jug of maple syrup. In the morning, when you are looking for a good hearty breakfast – this is your plate.

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One great thing about this dish was that you can have your eggs in three different ways. Poached, scrambled or fried. I decided to have it scrambled and I feel this went with the dish better. My boyfriend had his poached and it was two perfectly poached eggs. Runny in the middle.

Potatoes were light and crispy , bacon was crispy, and the sausage was meaty. The pancakes were airy and light and the maple syrup brought everything together. There was plenty on the plate and it will line up ones stomach for the rest of the day.

Side: Mac n Cheese – £3 – Tinu’s score – 2.9-3/5

If you are a greedy so and so just like I am, a main is never enough. I decided to go with some mac and cheese on the side. It was enjoyable, but I felt it was middle of the road. It had some taste, but I felt that it could have had a lot more cheese embedded through out. A little bit of salt had to be added just to adapt to me. However, overall, still nice and would go well with a meat based dish.

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Hot Drink: Hot Chocolate – 3.20, with marshmallows. – Tinu’s score – 2/5

I felt that there was not much taste in this hot chocolate. The most enjoyable part of this hot chocolate was the lovely mug it came in and the marshmallows. Plenty spoons of sugar would need to be added in order to bring taste. But all in all, there are better hot chocolates out there to taste.

Cold Drink: Salted Caramel Shakes – £5.25 –  Tinu’s score – 4/5

This was a very real thick milkshake. It was thick and creamy and and everything a milkshake good be. When a milkshakes has 6 scoops of vanilla ice-cream, you know that it going to be a big deal. It was also topped up with popcorn, so that was little treat on top of your drink!

Overall experience: – 4/5.

I think this is one of the best places to go for breakfast, brunch or dinner! Tasty food, warm atmospheres and good service. This place is great for a quick catch up, or when you are come back from a good shop in Oxford Street and want something to eat quickly. Good location, easy to find, with an affordable price. £15/£20 will go a long way here! No need to call to book ahead in the morning, just walk in and dine as you wish!

Other locations:

  • Battersea Rise
  • Brighton
  • Canary Wharf
  • Croydon
  • Hackney Wick
  • Hoxton
  • London Bridge
  • Soho
  • Spitalfields

Angel branch: 31 Camden Passage, London N1 8EA
Hours:  8am–11pm
Phone: 020 7226 5454 – reservations available: Monday – Friday from 5pm

10 FOOD PLACES PERFECT FOR FIRST DATES

Hello everyone! I am back again without a review this time, but focusing on ten food places that I personally feel will be great for that perfect first date. These are not just for first dates, but can also be for catch ups and other celebrations. But I personally feel that each restaurant has a different feel and these feels will be ideal in getting to know someone.

1. Superstar BBQ

The initial idea of cooking your own food was off-putting but when I found out that it was only the meat (which had come heavily marinated) that we had to cook ourselves, it suddenly became exciting. The ambience – exceptional.  Perfect for a date. The fact you get to cook your food, naturally gets you talking and active, rather than just waiting for the food to come, so it is a different vibe, but one that is enjoyable.

2. Honest Burgers

Who doesn’t like a good burger? If you looking for melt in the mouth beef, rustic fries and the freshest lemonade that you have ever tasted, then you have to visit this burger joint. I am a strong lover of Honest Burgers – I have been over ten times! And every time, it feels like the first. If you are not the kind of person who believes that you should spend loads of money on food, then this will fit the budget nicely. Each branch is rustic with a barn-type feel. I recommend the “Honest” burger. A real good, hearty burger. All burgers come with fries with no added cost. Added extra i recommend are the onion rings and chicken wings.

3. Hakassan 

In the heart of Mayfair, and also in the centre of my heart is Hakassan. If you like fine dining, and don’t mind spending a pretty penny, then consider cashing out some coins in this restaurant. It has a gorgeous feel, gorgeous Thai food and good cocktails. You will not be disappointed in the food portions or the quality of the food. I highly recommend for that exceptional first impression.

4. Novikov 

Another place that has been described to may be on the expensive side is Novikov, situated 2-3 minutes from Green Park Station. However, I promise that Novikov can be on the affordable side depending on what you decide to pick from, and I have been a handful of times. If you are in the mood for some Wagyu beef or caviar, then expect to spend hundreds, but if you pick food like me and get some chicken, noodles/rice and even some dim sum and cocktails, £40/£45 will stretch far for you. Ambience of the restaurant is similar to Hakassan, dark lighting and classy atmosphere and noise levels are respectable. As well as the restaurants, you have the bar downstairs and that is great for after dinner drinks.

5. Zizzi

Zizzi restaurant is gorgeous in terms of food. Again, it is quite an inexpensive restaurant, with less than £20 stretching from starters to a shared desert. I am the biggest fan of Thai food, but Zizzi provided me with some good Italian food, that I think would be good on any date.

6. Kervan

Turkish food is my 2nd favourite cuisine. It has well cooked meats, that’s so tasty and the food is in abundance. The best thing to eat at Kervan, or any Turkish restaurants are their mezze platters of meat and rice. They are so filling and tasty, and you will always be able to able to take some left over. Food that allows you to pick and choose and also gets you spoilt for choice, always allows you interact with someone more than you can think!

7. Flat Iron

O Flat Iron! How I love thee! Only praise can be given to Flat Iron! The most inexpensive, tastiest steak around town! I kid you not, STK and definitely Guacho’s steak does not compare to Flat Iron. From the chips, to the leaf salad, to the rose lemonade to the steak. Everything is faultless. I have been Flat Iron three times, and I leave in awe every-time. The price of the steak is £10 and chips £3, that £13 for the best pairing you can imagine. This is the number one place I would advise. The ambience is rustic also with wooden furniture, but the food is one a whole other level. No 1 recommendation for a first date!

Side note: Medium rare steak for best results!

8.  Burger and Lobster

Nice and simple restaurant that requires under £30 per person for lobster, burger, salad and chips and drink. Not bad at all. The lobster may seem like a rubix cube to first get in but with helpful staff to each you how to get in, it’s more fun than a struggle. Definitely a great place for someone to try lobster, as there are different ways the lobster can be cooked and is great for someone to try something new.

9. Meat Liquor 

Another favourite of mine. The restaurant comes with a look. Quite a edgy, “dirty” feel, that the food replicates. But I promise you, it is a get in and get your hands dirty type of food and you will love it. As well as good ol’ burgers and cheesy chips, their cocktails are good and strong. Ambience, especially at night, is quite chatty and loud, so if you find it quite intimidating to have too much of a quiet atmosphere, then head over! Everything comes together in order to have a good time and first date.

10. Inamo 

Head over to Introduction for a full review. Imano’s interactive table and wide range of Thai food is the perfect spot for a great date. Food is great, and if the company is great, what else could you need?

 

Akua’s cookbook – Pound cake

Hello and if not by magic,  I’m back with another post for you guys! This post is a recipe that you can also find on akuascookbook.wordpress.com. You’ll be able to find bakes, cakes, meals and all sorts of treats that will be coming up soon! Follow her on WordPress and also on Instagram at akuascookbook!

I am going to feature a recipe that is not only easy to make, but tastes great. And you can reproduce this cake in six, easy to follow steps.

Pound cake

Serves 8-10 people

Ingredients:

  • 280g of self-raising flour
  • 280g of unsalted butter (at room temperature)
  • 280g of caster sugar
  • 5 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 5 tbsp milk
  • 1 tbsp of vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp of ground nutmeg (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp of salt

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C (160°C fan)/ gas mark 4.
  2. Line the bottom of a 23cm round cake tin with baking paper, and spray with oil or butter lightly. – I would personally suggest butter.
  3. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar with a wooden spoon or mixer.
  4. Beat in the eggs, milk, and vanilla essence until well combined.
  5. Gradually fold in the flour and baking powder into the wet mixture. Fold the batter until smooth.
  6. Pour the batter into the cake tin and level it with a spoon. Place in the oven and bake for 45 minutes – 1 hour, or until a toothpick or knife comes out clean when inserted into the centre of the cake.

I suggest eating with some ice-cream or clotted cream and with some berries or drizzle with chocolate. The possibilities of decorating and making this cake your own are endless!

pound cake

 

YAUATCHA

Hello guys! I’m back with another restaurant review that I visited during the Valentine period.

I would love to know where all you fabulous people went to eat or even what you cooked up for the Valentines day, so leave a comment on this post to let me know!

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One of the highlights of valentines day had to be receiving these beautiful flowers!

Let’s start off with the Valentines day dinner. It was only right for me and my boyfriend to celebrate Valentines day with cuisine that we both loved and first built a bond over – Chinese food! Chinese food is 2nd in line after Thai for favourite cuisines – I just love how aromatic and flavoursome authentic Asian food can be and because of that I am such a fan!

Location: We visited the restaurant Yauatcha, located in the Soho branch. The location is quite hidden, but is 8 minute walk or 4 minute drive from Oxford Street Station.img_38101

Settings: The restaurant is beautiful to look at! I really loved the fish tank that they had. Your eye catches it as you arrive and the seats that we got were brilliant. I couldn’t have been happier with the seating arrangements that they gave us!

They were sofa like chairs and we got quite a big table, even though it was only two for us, but as the table was so big, we could afford to sit side by side and created a different edge for the dining experience. However, that can be said, the rest of the tables were good sizes for two people and can be put together for other size parties.

Service: Staff were fairly friendly towards us. We waited only a little while to be seated but that was to set up our table as we arrived a little earlier. Sometimes, it took a few hands in the air to get the waiter’s attention, which personally is not a problem to me, and once they reached us they were helpful. Because of this, I would suggest evening meals at off peak times, as I think it would be quite chaotic during their peak times, like lunchtimes.

On to the good stuff!

Nibbles: They were pickled cucumber with three sauces and surprisingly I really liked it. My boyfriend really wanted to ask for the recipe and repeating what he said “How could they make cucumbers taste this way? So nice!”

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There were more slices of cucumber but we ate so many before I remembered to take a picture!

Starters: Lobster roll – 9.80 – Tinu’s score –  3/5

These were quite different, I would describe them to be alternative spring rolls. These were quite tasty, the lobster was nice and soft, however I felt what was wrapped around it was really flaky and crumbled everywhere with every bite. That being said, it was still tasty. Good to have if you are ordering individually, as it only included three separate rolls.

Crispy duck roll(s) – 7.80 – Tinu’s score –  4/5

There have been only one place where I have had better spring rolls  – Hakkasan Mayfair. These type of spring rolls are the real deal. Fat, full of duck and cucumber and packed with flavour. Only thing to criticise is the duck was only a tad dryer than Hakassan’s spring rolls (Hakassan’s are 5/5!)

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Main course: Stir Fry rib of beef in black bean sauce – Price £21.20 – Tinu’s Score – 3.2/5

The beef was delicious! If it was just a bowl of the the beef with a few veg, the dish would have got a solid 4.5, however there were more veg than meat, which isn’t exactly what I would have wanted. Focusing on flavour, very tasty. Even writing this, I can taste it again, just wish there was more! But if you don’t mind a lot of veg with your meat, it is great, and comes in a big bowl

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Main course – Thai style chicken with onion, mango, papaya, chilli and coriander – 14.80 – Tinu’s score 4.1/5

Yes yes yes to this dish! Absolutely delicious and very flavoursome. The fruits such as mango were present but only a hint which is perfect for someone like me who isn’t a big fan of sweets with my meats. Three words- yum yum yumminess. Also with such a big bowl, you always were able to dip your fork back in and be surprised that there was more Thai chicken waiting.

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Side – Egg Fried Rice with Long Bean – Price – 9.20 – Tinu’s score 2/5

The price is way too expensive to what was served up. The size was good, however it was very bland. A lot of seasoning needed to be added and you had to mix it with the tasty mains.

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Desserts: Jasmine honey,  Price – 8.80 – Tinu’s score –  4.2

I am not a big lover of deserts and after all of the food, I was quite full, but still my greed won over common sense and we opted for a pudding. So glad I did. Not only was it presented so beautifully, it was light, airy, creamy and pleasing on the palette. It was served with ice cream and inside had hazelnut cream and chocolate in thin layers. I would recommend it for anyone who wanted something light and sweet to end the evening.

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Drinks: ‘Chai Lai Lai’ Price – 12.50Tinu’s Score – 3.9/5

The cocktail was lovely! Had three grapes that were on a stick and very juicy and it was good to drink in between meals. However, I feel that there was too much ice in the drink and diluted it quite so much. I feel next time ask with no ice or a little less than they normally add.

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Also a lovely bottle of water, with a pH of 8, was free for us and I have to say that is a lovely bonus in my books!

Overall experience : 3.9/5 – I would recommend this definitely for a birthday meal. Fabulous ambience and good food!

Address15-17 Broadwick Street., Soho, London, W1F 0DL

Contact number: 02074948888
Opening hours: Sun – Thur 12 noon – 10.00pm (last reservation), Fri and Sat  12 noon – 10.30pm (last reservation)
Reseverationsreservations@yauatcha.com, groups@yauatcha.com

Introduction

Oh my gosh guys, it’s happening!

Hello everyone and welcome to my introductory blog page for my upcoming food blog! Today, this blog is going to be slightly different to how I have planned the rest of my blogs to be, but I hope you enjoy this post nonetheless. It will be split into two parts: A short introduction about me and a short review on where I have last eaten this year.

It would be rude to introduce my blog without introducing oneself, as manners are not just important across the table. My name is Atinuke, but most people call me Tinu. Over the years, the stress of being able to say my full name seemed more difficult than a tongue twister, so I decided, around Year 12, maybe it was time for me to use a shortened version and give my ears a rest to all the variations that had been created.tzru71421

I’m currently a 2nd year university student at the University of Kent and to some rarity, the most fun I have at university, is when I’m reading into part of my course! What a grandma I’ve become. I’m currently studying Psychology and also currently not regretting it! I have five main loves in life, apart from family and friends: My boyfriend, acrylic nails, psychology, eye shadow and food.

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My love for food started since I was a little child. My mother always told me I loved food too much, but that was typical of Nigerian mothers, to make sure that you don’t end up eating too much at their friends houses. Nonetheless, it was true! I really loved food. Loved it so much and was ready to explore and try new things. By 19, I had tried all the famous things I used to see on  Come Dine With Me – a show that I watch too religiously – including scallops, which was a breaking point in my life, personally. Following this list was mussels and lobster and my love for prawns grew more everyday.

As I found a love for seafood, my current love for burgers increased also with me and my friends in 2014 going on burger adventure and I found myself dinning over 15 burger restaurants!

But nothing could compare to the love that I found in Thai food. It all started at my friend’s 18th birthday. She held her birthday at Thai Square, and fell head over heels in love with the fragrant taste and how appealing it was to the eye and palette. Since then I have only been back twice, but I will go back again soon and give you a guys a thorough analysis of why that place is so fabulous!

What the inspiration behind the blog? Others. The most common question that I get asked when I am out and being a photographer at dinner is “Where is that? ” “You always know where to eat” and recently my friends have been encouraging me to do a food blog. And finally about a month ago, when I got told again to do a food blog, I thought “Why not?”.  This won’t be your average food blog, this will be a food experience. My goal is to let you experience that with me so that you can experience it amongst yourselves. It will range from videos the atmosphere to rating the experience and food out of five.

Now the second part of the blog will be a short review about Inamo, and its new branch that has opened up in Camden. I personally think that it’s located in a good area and place and it just across the road from Morrington Crescent tube station, and in close proximity is KOKO Camden.

This had been my second time going to Inamo, with the first time being after a date to Winter Wonderland in 2015. When I first visited the place, I was unsure of the portion sizes, and even with my boyfriend already having his mind made up about having a Thai green curry, I remained quite hesitant. Eventually, I settled for duck and pancakes, and a quite hungry me was disappointed with my decision – duck and pancakes are only meant for starters! But my boyfriend was far from upset with his Thai green curry. And having as taste from his bowl it was quite evident that I should have followed his footsteps. However, the down side was he had to order more rice as the curry to rice ratio was too small.

On our second visit, I noticed some differences from the two branches.

  1. Inter-activeness  – The Camden location did not have interactive tables like the Soho branch. Part of the Inamo experience is to order from the table and give the interactive feeling. The only time you would need to even encounter the waiters is when getting seated and paying! However at the Camden branch, we had to use iPads, which I guess can still be under the bracket of interactive, however, the iPads did have a few problems at the start so we had a lot of interaction with the staff.
  2. Variety – It did take me by surprise how much food had been added to the Camden menu. Fabulous ! I thought the menu at Soho, when I last visited, didn’t offer that much choice, but this menu was far better and definitely made picking what you wanted to eat more interesting.
  3. Rice portions – Yes this has to be its own sub heading! At the Camden branch we had to plan ahead and so we order two extra bowls of rice as well as the rice that came with our meals. Truth be told, we had to cancel the fourth bowl of rice as the rice that came with the curry this time was more than sufficient. At the Soho branch, eight bowls of rice still would not have been enough – such small portions!

Dinner Details: We went after the DVSN concert, which I have to say was bloody amazing. What an amazing, humble guy! img_35531

So after concert dinner, as you do, was at Inamo, and I mentioned previously, it was in such a good location, just opposite the train station. The restaurant was lovely and the waiter was extremely welcoming and friendly towards and we were seated fairly quickly.

On to the good stuff!

Starter: Korean wings. They were dusted of with coconut and presented so nicely you wanted to just snatch them from the waiters hands before it reached the table! They were tasty and light with a lot of flavour to them but a total on nine wings, so the odd number could lead to a tug of war if you’re like me and really love a good wing! Price – 8.95, Tinu’s score – 3.9/5

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Main: Claypot Green Chicken Curry & Rice – Best Thai green curry you will ever taste! Where do I start… The creaminess of the curry and how all the flavours come together is orgasmic to say the least. I have had a few Thai green curries before, but nothing will beat this one for me so far. Absolutely delicious. Also what I liked about it is ingredients such a lemongrass were removed but still present in the dish, so that you can taste the lemongrass but not bite into it during your meal. img_36891

Also included in the dish were mushrooms, tomatoes, chicken and sweet potatoes. All soft and well balanced. The rice was nice and fluffy, and so when eating these two together all the components, it is heaven!  Price – 15.95. Extra rice – 3.95. Tinu’s score – 5/5

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Bad stuff:

Drink sizes. Now personally for 2.25, this is quite a tragic size. So tragic, that it looks like it’s a toy. Now it is quite a down side to order some water just for the sole purpose that the drink is so small, so a suggestion would be to to just put lemonade on tap and serve in tall glasses like they do with their fresh juices, as no-one wants to pay almost a fiver for a full glass of lemonade.

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Overall this restaurant is one to go to for a birthday, date or even Valentine’s day. Right now, they have the curry on their Valentines day Menu, so I highly suggest if you do choose to visit Inamo on Feburay the 14th, try the curry as it will get you and your partner’s taste-buds tingling!

Inamo – Soho branch – 134-136 Wardour St, Soho, London W1F 8ZP,  020 7851 7051, inamo-restaurant.com

Camden branch – 265 Hampstead Rd, Kings Cross, London NW1 7QX, 020 3325 2100 , opentable.co.uk