We love desserts in my house. But recently I have been trying to get us to eat more healthily. My children ate a ridiculous amount of ice cream this summer and I am trying to get them excited again about fruit. Namely frozen fruit. So, I thought I would share three super easy, and very fast, recipes for frozen fruit that will make your little one exclaim 'ooh!' and they won't even notice that they're having a healthy dessert.
I love dining out. And even more, I love dining out with a view. We are so lucky in London to have the lovely Thames running through the city. Scenic river views are not just for those in central London. Come a bit further south to Kingston-upon-Thames, and you can enjoy a riverside view whilst enjoying some delicious food.
If you're not familiar with Kingston, it is a town in the Royal Borough of Kingston. And though it has a Surrey post code, it is a borough of London. Kingston is known for its great shopping (an indoor mall called The Bentalls Centre as well as a great variety of shops along and near the pedestrian-only area. And recently, Kingston has become known for its wide range of restaurants. I was recently invited to an event thrown by the RiverSide Walk Kingston to show off some of its wonderful dining options.
Dining with views of London is kind of having a moment isn't it? Especially in London. Why have a boring meal looking at your partner/friends when you can be looking at gorgeous views of the city?! So when my chef friend Omar Romero Quezada told me he was opening up a restaurant on the 23rd floor of the Hilton London Metropole, I couldn't wait to try it out. A couple of weeks ago, when the kids were staying with my in-laws for the weekend, Husband and I headed to Kojawan for a long, boozy lunch.
Kojawan is a futuristic restaurant that serves Korean, Japanese and Taiwanese fusion. I love Japanese food, but am new to Korean and have no idea about Taiwanese cuisine. So I was a bit nervous about the menu. Not for me, but for Husband who prefers a roast dinner to sushi any day of the week (in fact, he doesn't eat any fish whether it is cooked or raw). It turns out that I needn't have worried. There is loads of delicious food, no matter what tickles your taste buds.
First of all, we did not eat any of the mains. We shared booze food, starters and desserts. Booze food is basically the snacks you would get if you are just going to Kojawan for drinks. But they also make a great compliment to the starters. We enjoyed the crunchy cabbage, crispy chicken, zucchini fries (which are courgette chips, and they are amazing) and hot cricket bombs. Yes, those kinds of crickets. The cricket bombs are basically fried cheese balls with crickets inside, plus there are some crickets on the side that you can sprinkle on top.
Life is so hectic. I spend the weekdays rushing around after the kids. And even if I have free time, it is spent on errands and laundry (apart from the occasional break to watch The Real Housewives, heehee). The meals that I cook for my children are made quickly, and easily. Then on Saturdays we normally have a family outing and eat out. Sundays are my favourite day. It is the day we try not to make plans. We have a slow day, where we have fun at home. We play puzzles and Lego, Moozles does her homework, we watch an afternoon movie. And then, oh then, we eat.
One of my favourite British traditions is that of a Sunday Roast. Meat (usually lamb, but sometimes beef or pork in our house), potatoes (roasted or mashed), some kind of green vegetable and Yorkshire puddings (even though they are traditionally served with beef, my family loves them, especially my son who demands them with every roast).
This weekend we had a family lunch in east London to celebrate my mother-in-law's birthday. I love trying out new restaurants so I was eager to visit Formans Restaurant in Hackney Wick. The restaurant is located in the H. Forman factory (they are the oldest curers of salmon in Britain). The factory was designed into a salmon-like shape (see my last photo).
Ooh, I love Mother's Day. It is the day that Husband really steps up his game. The kids, well Moozles anyway, is thinking about all the presents she would like to 'buy' for me. And Dubz, well, Dubz is trying to figure out how he can get some more superhero toys. But anyway, I don't require diamonds or a Michelin-starred restaurant. But it makes me happy that my family make a little fuss over me. So I thought I would share some things that will be making my Mother's Day a bit special.
We eat out at least once at weekend, and we're always on the lookout for a great family restaurant. We are quite lucky to be spoiled for choice when it comes to restaurants in south west London. But I am still always on the hunt for restaurants that our whole family will love. Besides delicious food, you need gracious service (that isn't slow) and comfy seating. Last weekend, we were lucky enough to find all these things at No.1 Duke Street in Richmond upon Thames.
We had the in-laws visiting this weekend, and they kindly offered to babysit on Saturday night. The first thought whenever we get the offer of babysitting services is 'cinema or new restaurant?' Since we were feeling too tired to sit in the movie theatre for two hours, we decided to go to a restaurant we've been keen to try out. So we went to Han restaurant/karaoke bar in New Malden.
If you live in/near New Malden, you will know that it has the highest concentrated Korean population in Europe (around 20,000) and is even referred to as Little Korea. I have been wanting to try Korean barbecue for ages, but Husband and I have been intimidated to go as we had no idea what we were supposed to do or what we should eat. We have both been to Han before (but separately) for karaoke with friends/colleagues. Han is known for their great karaoke rooms and it's a popular spot for groups who don't want to go into central London to sing their hearts out (plus it's open til 1.30am on a Saturday night).
For Christmas, Husband was given a voucher for a cream tea for two at Harrod's. But since The Georgian Restaurant was booked up during all the Saturdays in January, Husband kindly gave me the voucher so that I could take a friend. So today, one of my mummy friends and I went for an early tea while the kids were at school. If you've never been to The Georgian before, it's a beautiful restaurant. And there is an enclosed terrace on the side which feels quite relaxed while still elegant.
I have previously had the afternoon tea at The Georgian. For £39 you will be served tea, sandwiches, cakes, scones and a trifle. But on this occasion we had the cream tea, which is quite economical, considering the opulent surroundings. For £15, you can have tea and four small scones. The scones were delicious. And as it was lunchtime, we also ordered the Truffle & Parmesan Fries. My friend is partial to the combination of truffle and parmesan (she regularly has it on her popcorn) and adored the fries.
Okay, there's something I have to admit. Husband and I eat a lot of meat. Like every night for dinner. And we always say we should try and have a vegetarian-based dinner once a week (like Meatless Monday), and every week we fail. So when ao.com asked us to eat six vegetable-based meals out of seven days, I was excited for the challenge. Husband was not. And even suggested that I was a bit crazy for accepting the challenge. Hmph.
So the week before Christmas, we said 'see ya later lamb, peace out pork, and bye bye burger'. And we filled the fridge with vegetables. Lots and lots of vegetables. And since Husband is the superior cook in this relationship, I handed him the recipe cards and wished him good luck.
From top to bottom, here are some of the delicious vegetable-based dishes we enjoyed: spiced root vegetable soup; spiced vegetable biryani; tofu and asparagus pad thai; and mushroom, spinach and potato pie. We enjoyed them all, but the biryani was my favourite. Not only was it delicious, but it was extremely filling.