foodie Archives - Greenwich Pantry Blog
15 Apr

Loving Food at Greenwich Pantry got us marching into the kitchen

Cooking with Greenwich Pantry

Foodies loving food at Greenwich Pantry is nothing new and there’s a lot to love about food, but if you want to make more of an impression take a leap of faith with our cooking classes. Our enthusiastic team will have you marching into the kitchen with an inspiring collection of food and cookery classes.

“….if you want to make more of an impression take a leap of faith with our cooking classes.”

The last few months had us loving lots of different food. For starters there was February and Valentine’s Day and for some of you lovers who wanted to make more of an impression than a box of cheap chocolates and corny ‘2 can dine for’ deal ever could, some of you in the first flushes of flirtation with food came to us for a sushi class and we made Sushi followers of you; expert lovers of good ingredients whom we’re sure are now skipping if not leaping into more awesome adventures in eating since taking the Sushi Class; finding out your Sushi Type and ‘Finding the Foodie in You’.

Then there was Mother’s Day and competitions but wait; before then, Pancake Day, that flipping crazy (good) day, which featured some of the best pancakes seen careering through Greenwich Market during the Shrove Tuesday Pancake Race and with just enough time to get a freshly flipped short stack down, it was National Pizza Day. Yay. And you certainly went about ‘proving’ that when food is homemade using delicious ingredients that are wholewheat, heritage wholemeal and made with a whole-lot of love; food can be a lot of fun, much more tasty, nutritious and way less expensive than when it’s pre-prepared! But all that seems light years away! Who kneads readymade, when a baking class is just round the corner eh?

‘there’s no need to monkey around when it comes to cooking,’

If you’re still stalling, rather than leaping for joy at the thought of cooking, uninspired on what to dine on, or somewhat bored with chocolate eggs and egg hunts then get with the program and join one of Greenwich Pantry’s new classes to get you up-skilled in the kitchen. There’ll be no need to monkey around when it comes to cooking.

Perhaps you’ve been inspired and want to get better at making authentic dishes with Asian flavours? Why not step up to the plate and join our weekly cookery classes, or if you’re after something a bit more special then you could learn to make stunning food and be the envy of your office when you take proper grown up packed lunches to work. Your co-staff will be salivating around you and you’ll be the talk of the town. Everyone’ll want an invite to your table with the cooking confidence you’ll gain on the International Cuisine Cookery Class.

Knowing how to dine doesn’t need to be daunting when you’re well prepared with a stacked pantry of the essentials, so take a leap of faith and ‘Find The Foodie in You’.

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28 Feb

You can be as foodie as you feel

Cooking with Greenwich Pantry

 

You can be as foodie as you feel

Are you a cooking catastrophe who hasn’t reached any of the gastronomic gourmet goals you set for yourself in 2017  if so, don’t give yourself a hard time.

Don’t hold back, let the cooking continue

Banish those can’t do thoughts and this spring,  don’t let anything hold you back from getting your cooking hero badge from friends and family! At Greenwich Pantry, we say, ‘yes you can’ and instead of being told you can’t, we here at Greenwich Pantry are all about helping you so you can!

Cooking and eating healthy is double liberation.   Forget the biscuits and breakfast skipping, take outs and kfcs, maybe,  you’re just in need of a more diverse diet?  Whatever it is, please, try not to tell yourself off. We’re here to help and get you on your tracks, saying ‘yay yay’ not saying nay.

The key is, rewarding yourself for good behaviour and not acknowledging your bad habits. It only leads to guilty vibes and puts you on the path to resorting back to short term rewards.

Break the bad habits, one recipe at a time..

So breaking bad habits; how? Essentially, what you need is to replace the old habits with new and exciting ones. Take new challenges.

For starters, come on an exciting taste tour with us and find the foodie in you.

Banish dreary thoughts with these 5 simple steps and join us at Greenwich Pantry to make new habits a positive part of your life.

  1. Buff up on baking. Try a Bake it Cake it experience with someone you love, or come to a class and make new friends.
  2. Expand your repertoire! Perhaps come in secret while you learn to make scintillating Sushi to surprise  your guests at your next soiree.
  3. Swot up on how to create sumptuous savouries or simply learn how to maximise your nutritional intake and and eat clean.
  4. Do it with confidence. Our monthly cookery club is where you’ll experience the joy of learning a variety of eclectic homemade food techniques, ranging from French through to Asian cooking, taking you into 2016 with a new and exciting world of culinary delights you can replicate easily at home.
  5. Join in! Don’t do it alone. The art to Finding the Foodie in You is something to
     enjoy with others. We’ve oodles of cooking events this spring!
Finally, celebrate your successes! Share it with friends. Primp up your paltry pantry and fill it with exiting and nutritious delights and show everyone what great new yummy things you’re discovering  with us on Instagram.

So there you go! The best way of banishing a bad habit is to put your energy into another one make a habit out of trying all of the delicious things that you make – practice makes perfect..

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09 Apr

Sun’s Out, Buns Out.

Oh how that big shiny yellow ball in the sky gladdens my heart.

Another thing that brings joy to my soul is Jam. Simply good Jam, with a pot of tea. Jam on buns and on finger sandwiches; oh yes it’s time for the timely old tradition of Afternoon Tea.

I’m not talking silver service, stuffy expensive afternoon tea at a hotel with your Aunty Mabel. Although I’m known to have a penchant for dollies once in a while, we should do it more often. At home, alone, at work even or outside; especially when today is as beautiful as today. Go on have Afternoon Tea, al fresco if you can.

Start by putting down that thing you’re doing. Right now and just get your buns out. Spread them with juicy delicious, tangy sweet delightful jam and have a moment. That’s it, just you and your buns.

Well, share this moment if you will, just excuse yourself if in company but try to make a date of it at least once a week.

Brew a decent cuppa, let the caffeine gently perk you up whilst the sugars do the thing that sugars do and you’ll be right as ninepence. Well at least until supper time.

Right now, I’m indulging in Campbell’s Perfect Tea and the delectable honey-like consistency of Granny’s Secret Rosehip Light Jam on a scone or two.

Rosehips are full of vitamin C, Tea is naturally high in antioxidants and sitting in front of the windows wide open bathed in glorious Spring sunshine, I’m getting a much needed dose of vitamin D, too. You could say that taking Afternoon Tea is practically beneficial to your health, well you could.

Time for Tea

Time for Tea

Ahh, that’s more like it. Now, back to the grindstone for now.

Have a Sunny Afternoon.

x

 

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26 Jan

The Dr-iet. You’re in the home stretch.

Come on, you can do it! You’re in the home stretch. By the end of the week it’ll be a new month. No more being a slave to dry-January and the latest combination/elimination or de-socialisation diet. It’ll be so-long to the season of the Dr-iet.

Whilst it’s necessary to tighten our belts in a notch, being sensible has never really been sexy has it. Or is a little of what you fancy does you good; the answer? I’m a mean moderator of moderation, gifted with being thrifty and must admit I’ve caved for a bit of cake and left over Cava here and there, but my answer this month is making treats transform. Yes, happiness has been leftovers.

If you had some delicious and traditional roast beef on Sunday, I’m sure you’ll agree that there’s no greater joy than cold sliced beef sandwiches with lashings of sunny yellow mustard to make a Monday, or even a Tuesday if you have an ounce of January’s restraint left. I love to endure the savage sinus singeing hot stuff and Greenwich Pantry dost kindly provide * (Tattoo drum roll please)… winner of a world sauce award and especially piquant; Uncle Roy’s Rabbie’s Burnie Mustard and since it was Burns Night just this weekend, I’d like to pipe on, that it is not only fiery and flavoursome, but it’s wheat and gluten free too.

Now, straying on the subject of celebrations; Happy ‘Straya Day to our Antipodean friends and I’ve learned they’ve more love for the lamb Down Under.

So, if lamb roast is what you love most, perhaps that lamb on the bone was slow to go? If so, tear that meat from the bone.

  • Caramelise some roughly diced onions and garlic.
  • If you’ve leftover roast veg; say carrots, dice what’s left and add a bit of extra veg if it’s at the bottom of the fridge, forgotten like a shopping trolley in a duck pond, (I always buy fennel and celery and forget to use it, this is a great reviver for bendy celery.) dice that too and add it with the meat to the sweet smelling onions.
  • Then to make a satisfying tangy stew, I sprinkle over a couple of generous handfuls of peppery Puy Lentils.
  • Add tinned chopped tomatoes and a rinsed tin full of water to just cover it all and simmer for about 20 minutes. Season to taste and et voilà!

‘Puy’ is also the Provençal word for volcanic hill. So in keeping with the spirit of things, I’m sure you’ll erupt with gladness with this dish and if you’ve been virtually virtuous so far this month, perhaps a 2010 Barossa Red would go down nicely, especially if you are celebrating today.

Now,  thinking back along the lines of a cinched in waist; we’re back to tightening that belt remember and there is still room to stretch it out. No, not you. It’s not back to the box set and the sofa yet. I meant stretching out the left overs. Hark, you’ve got no leftovers left you say? Well to exercise my most tasty advice, the stubborn pots aren’t the only things that need to be left to soak. I bathe them bones, either low in a slow cooker all night or you can simmer them low on the stove for a few hours whilst you catch up on the latest crime thriller. You’ll have a thrilling stock for sure. This is the very starting point for the thriftiest and quickest of midweek dishes; risottos, healthy soups and can be frozen for gravy next week.

More from me on #MeatMonday later.

Hope it’s all Gravy with you!

;  )

Spice up lacklustre leftovers

Spice up lacklustre leftovers

 

*A Grace Before Dinner, Extempore. Robert Burns.

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15 Jan

Create Comforting and Colourful food in your Kitchens on Cold Days.

souper dooper

souper dooper

On one particularly foggy day this week, despite unpredictable weather warnings, my impatience to be outside escaping central heating and hiking off mince pies, beat my need to be in-front of my laptop or in the kitchen.

I went out into crisp chilly weather perfect for walking in.

Although the scene was bleak, it was beautiful and still showed me surprising arrays of colour.

It was dry, with the sky a pavement grey. The bleak horizon met the brown, frosty and enjoyably squelchy mud, but in the park I was rewarded with the sight of new life among the skeletons of yellowing fallen leaves.
There, precious bright green beginnings of the heads of daffodils and crocuses peeked timidly through.

If skies were never grey I’d not appreciate the sunshine and it has to be cold and wet to soak deep roots for a scorching summer, I tell myself.

Hooray for these buds heralding the arrival of spring, I count down the days, like a kid counting down Christmas. Whenever there’s a mere momentary break in the rain I pull on my wellies and get out in whatever blustery drizzle the skies offer, with hope that the sun continues to burn through the gloomy mist.

At this time of year, what I do love as much as being outside is thawing out in a steamy kitchen with an oven hot and whirring, pots and pans on incandescent flames of a hob or a discreet bubbling of a slow cooker humbly taking it’s sweet time to warm up the kitchen.

Much like the winters scene I found this week, my cooking in this dull cold season, is predominantly sludgy and earthy coloured. However It’s important for both the constitution and the curator of food in you, that it’s flecked with handfuls of fresh flavouring.

So keep colour an important part of putting together dishes at this time of year:

Slowly simmer earthy brown stews and garnish with glut loads of zesty green herbs and veg.

Prepare plump and creamy oats overnight, or pale blankets of porridge with a blob of ruby jam or golden honey.

Feed fluffy swollen rice with flavour; pique paellas with proper paprika, rightfully enrich risottos or serve simply with rich ochre curries, even sprinkle it in super souper dooper soups.

Harvest season may be a mild-weather dream away but at GP gather yourself jewelled dashes of pomegranate, hibiscus, and rich thick pepper and tomato Ayvar to brighten up dull days and feed the furnace of your body to keep you warm happy and healthy in this newish new year.

Wishing you all wellness, good health and happiness.

x

 

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01 Dec

Popping into the Pop-Up Shop for a treat

Thank you to everyone who came to visit the Greenwich Pantry pop-up shop having seen our tweets. It was great meeting you and I hope you’re enjoying yummy and rediscovered nostalgic treats. Isn’t it nice to treat yourself sometimes?

Greenwich Pantry proprietress Lara’s ethos is that we should be treatwise, but we should treat ourselves. Lara comes alive thinking of the world of possible nutritional enjoyment out there, what we can eat and how we can treat ourselves, daily. Yes, daily!

“Indeed it is possible to wisely treat ourselves everyday, it just means we need to spend money wisely and most importantly recognise the value of what we’re eating”.

Not just a pantry patron;  she’s  a truly well researched curator of foods, a busy working mum who proudly possesses a high integrity for food and is a promoter of produce where she can vouch for the provenience of items sold and their ingredients. She even knows her product providers personally. In fact she’s pretty much pally with all of her suppliers. Praising them, there’s nothing she doesn’t love on the stockroom shelves. Having tried a few things, I couldn’t agree more. My mouth still waters at the thought of trying Uncle Roy’s Passionfruit Curd.

Now, we’re in advent, it’s the run up to a busy festive time. If you’re anything like me, you’ve probably spent all year balancing work, family and your social calendars; where it’s hard to keep up with fashion, or even the house. (Maybe the kids wont let you keep the house tidy?) Whatever your lifestyle, Greenwich Pantry can allow you to feel like the kitchen is a place where you can find solace again.

“The kitchen is a place where we can surround ourselves with beautiful things, even perhaps where we can have order where we can’t necessarily have it in the rest of the house”.

Greenwich Pantry’s  packets aren’t just pretty containers, they contain inherently good things; ethically sourced, which is why Lara is so proud of all of the products.

“Finding value in our food is important: There is its nutritional value, then there’s value of it having pride of place in our cupboards. It’s about treating yourself with the time to prepare. We are all capable of running our lives; jobs and homes. So treating yourself is simply about organising  yourself and what you’re going to eat, it’s just about running your life and body, being decisive about what you want to eat.

So Lara, I agree, aspirational eating is liberating, it’s not just about having pleasing pretty packets.

“How we present ourselves with clothes, how we chose to appear is liberating. Like clothing, I think choices of food can allow you to liberate yourself. Believe in bold choices, experiment with change, make that break from your usual brand, say I’m not going to spend my money on my regular brand of … I’m going to try something that is better quality, beautiful and try enjoying a little bit of luxury through the medium of good food.”

Once again it was great to meet you, those of you who popped in to the Pop-Up shop. The good news is that Greenwich Pantry will be back @57arts for the Christmas Market next week on Saturday 6th December where you can really stock up on Christmas Treats.

Uncle Roy's Wonderful (and it is) Passionfruit Curd

Uncle Roy’s Wonderful (and it is) Passionfruit Curd

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17 Nov

Beat Stress, Bake Bread!

Apparently today is ‘National Bread Making Day’.

Ok, if you’re the type to roll your eyes at the likes of silly days such as National Only Eat Tomatoes Day/ Have Burgers for Breakfast Day or my personal favourite happening on the 15th July, a long wait away until Summertime next year (*sighs*): Piña Colada Day. Or the countless number of other marketed ‘Food Days’, then FYI- today is also National Take a Hike Day and if you think these ideas (yes most from across the pond) are silly, then ok, I will.

However, why not counter your daily stresses and take out your frustrations on some flour?

I find that there’s nothing more balancing, zen inducing and stress relieving than baking bread.

I must admit, I haven’t always been a huge success at baking. On a previous attempt, trying to be virtuous and both fibre and flavour conscious, I tried to use a complete spelt mix and must admit I completely stupendously #bakefail failed. The loaf sounded hollow when I came to give it that satisfying final tap, but the cooled lump fooled me, proving it was nothing but an inedible weapon.

Still nothing ventured, nothing gained and having experimented more, I can share with you this recipe that after few experiments, produced a beautiful light and malty loaf. (If you like less of a rich malty flavour and doughy texture, you could omit the Rye flour and use 125g more Wholemeal Spelt Flour together with 125g more of the Farmhouse Brown Strong Wheat Flour.

Today I came home to my beau, the bonny bearded expert baker in my household, having spent the afternoon flexing his muscles teasing the glorious gluten out of some Gilchesters Organics flours and he baked this gorgeous loaf with this yummy recipe.

Dry Ingredients

  1. 250g 100% Wholemeal Spelt Flour
  2. 350g Farmhouse Brown Strong wheat flour
  3. 250g Rye Flour

Wet Ingredients

  1. 14g yeast (2 packets of the quick to mix store cupboard kind)
  2. a blob of natural yogurt

Method

1. (If you have an airing cupboard or a proving cupboard, skip this step) Turn the oven on to the lowest setting, about 30 degrees, it should only be a comfortable warm temperature. Place a saucer of boiling water in the bottom of the oven to add a touch of moisture to the atmosphere.

2. Mix the flours in a big mixing bowl, if you have a dough mat, pour the flour out in a heap in the centre of it, or of course on to a hygienically cleansed dry work surface

3. Separately liven up the yeast in a jug with about 225ml of warm water

4. Create a well in the flour adding the liquid little by little, then add a blob of the natural yogurt.

5. Get kneading! Think of your to do lists, that person that nudged you on the tube and didn’t appologise, that car that drove past you splashing you with an arc of muddy rain. Go on, let it out. Release that tension! It’s hard work so make sure to do some neck stretches every so often, circle your head from shoulder to shoulder. Then keep on cathartically kneading for about 15 minutes. The dough should be tacky so that it sticks to your fingers, but no so much you cannot knead it. You’re aiming to hydrate the flour just enough to release the chewy glutens. As you work the dough, the idea is that the grains will absorb the moisture and part from your fingers.

6. Lightly flour the bread tin before carefully thwacking the conquered dough into it’s bed to prove in a moist oven for about an hour and a half to 2 hours, this particular loaf, didn’t double but almost triple in size. Some bakers knead after the prove, but this one was simply scored across the top and put into a hot oven on 180 degrees (ours is a fan oven, so set to 200 degrees if using an electric/gas oven) for about an hour, until it’s golden brown.

A springy doorstep slice, a wall of wheat and spelt ready to be slathered in butter.

A springy doorstep slice, a wall of wheat and spelt ready to be slathered in butter.

The result was a house heavenly perfumed with the cozy anticipation of sliced bread with Jam, slices to be lightly toasted, buttered and dunked into comforting hearty warming soups or hunks just ripped right off to be gobbled with cheese and pickles. This enormous endorphin releasing loaf should last, so long as I don’t keep picking at it.

For other great recipes have a look at Gilchesters recipe pages

Try having a go at baking yourselves and tell us all about it at the Greenwich Pantry pop-up shop on Saturday 29th November!

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14 Oct

Hello! I’m swooning food enthusiast and guest blogger Joyce.

Hello! 

I’d just like to introduce myself to you all (properly), I’m Joyce.

Perhaps you’ve read about my travels whilst I’ve been defying the end of Summer, or you may have seen snippets of my writing recently retweeted by my new foodie soul-sister, Lara from @GreenwichPantry where I’m very grateful to be on board as guest blogger. 

I’ll be reviewing what The Greenwich Pantry has to offer and I’ll be sharing my honest thoughts and musing on my favourite things about food. 

In the meantime you can reading more at www.mealsandboon.com  or follow me @MealsandBoon 

I’ll be posting reviews on The Greenwich Pantry shopping pages, but I’d love to see what you think of the products too?

I like eating at restaurants, but not as much as I love cooking at home. I like alliteration but not litterbugs and it bugs me if a plate gets taken from my restaurant table before the last person at the table has finished eating. 

Having recently changed jobs I recently plucked up the courage to put ‘I’m a keen Food Blogger’ on my CV, you know the bit where you put ‘other interests’ and after a string of recent interviews, I got a new job. Hooray, but in the ‘chat’ bit of one interview,  just as we got to the question; “So Joyce what are your interests out when you’re not working” (I’m always working) but the interviewer chimed in and said, “Don’t worry actually, so long as you’re not one of these people that takes pictures of your food and blogs about your breakfast…” Gulp. (Cue my mind Insta-montage of runny eggsplotions and cake close upssimmering dumplings in stew and #bakefails galore, oh my!)

The interviewer obviously hadn’t read all of my CV, but whilst in mid mind montage, I’m sure my face said it all. “It’s not all  food” I piped up to reassure, “some of it’s of my Cat”. 

Alas, I didn’t get that job.

Admittedly to you all and I think I’m in good company, that is exactly what I do. I photograph my food, turn my bad restaurant experiences into memorable narratives and well, I just love all things about eating. Whether it’s at home or on the town I’d love to share my stories and reviews with you. If you’d like to read more, I like to Yelp about things and I recently made #ROTD (Review of the Day) for the second time this year along with the Weekly Yelp too. 

So, thanks to Paul at Spread The Word who introduced me to Lara and I really look forward to chatting to you and hearing your foodie stories.

Happy chomping through Tuesday Night x

spoon

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