Well, this post has been ridiculously delayed. I’ve just been rushed off my feet over the last month, with 2 weeks working as a Researcher in London followed by a wonderful holiday to Puglia. This week is manic too, as I act as a wedding planner, print maker and flower arranger for a dear friend whose marriage is imminent (fingers crossed for a prolonged heatwave)!
Anyway, back in May I went down to the Waitrose cookery school because my Man Behind the Curtain review, which you can see here, got me into the top 10 finalists of the Waitrose food critic competition. Run in conjunction with The Good Food Guide and Waitrose magazine, the competition had been advertised inside the mag, and our reviews were selected as the best of hundreds of applicants, apparently. Which finally made me feel proud (rather than my usual combo of guilt and too-tight trousers) about my gluttonous tendencies!
After some extremely tough taste tests (tell me, could you identify kimchi as a flavouring when infused in vodka?! I couldn’t! P.S drinking a shot of it at 11am on a Saturday morning is possibly the single worst idea ever endured by mankind) we had a chat with William Sitwell, Elizabeth Carter and Rochelle Venables (all absolutely lovely, though William is certainly as witty and acerbic as he seems on Masterchef)! We then enjoyed an afternoon of cookery all together, guided by Waitrose’s charming and patient cookery school chefs. I didn’t even think to get my camera out until late into the afternoon, so I am woefully under-providing in terms of pictures – sorry!
As well as the aforementioned taste tests, we made a wonderful “egg and bacon martini” (sounds absolutely horrific, but was A JOY TO BEHOLD), Bloody Mary cocktails (up crops that kimchi vodka-this time, in a much more welcome guise) and Pina Coladas (usually not something I would opt for – but these tasted like lounging on white St Lucian sands…mmm)
We made ourselves wonderful satay monkfish skewers, kimchi, chimichurri steaks, portuguese tarts…all sorts of tasty dishes! Alongside copious glasses of good wine, it made for a rather excellent way to spend a Saturday afternoon!
I didn’t win the overall Waitrose food critic competition, whose ultimate prize was to guest write a review for the Good Food Guide – but I did have a lovely day and meet some lovely people. The winner was a lovely lady called Joanna who blogs over at The Gourmet Gannet – why not stop by and visit her?
You might have caught sight of me grinning inanely up at you if you get the newspapers and mags which Waitrose produces instore…there I am on the left!