Spanish pepper, Buxton Fringe Festival… and a blow-torch!

Hello All,

How are you doing? It’s been another good albeit crazy busy week for this Derby Foodie. I met the lovely David Nicholls, one of my favourite authors of all time at the Derby Book Festival. It was something of a dream come true, but more of that in a different blog post. I also dined at The Wonky Table for their monthly Vegetarian Night. Full foodie review coming shortly (suffice to say it was rather dreamy and can’t wait for the next one).

I have some very exciting news to share; I’ll be taking part in this year’s Buxton Fringe Festival, where I’ll be reading an excerpt of my novel Screaming Snowflakes and signing too. It’s a great festival for authors and creative folk from the literary community and I can’t wait to be a part of it. I’ll update you with information as it becomes available (it’s not till next month so there’s plenty of time).

What makes you happy? With me, it is writing and buying cooking paraphernalia. I bought a blow-torch. Yes, an actual blow-torch. You know, similar to the one that Tom Kerridge uses. Now I can really pretend I’m him (he’s one of my food heroes) and walk around the kitchen handling baby spuds saying stuff like, “Now let’s get these bad boys charred.” Here is me and my blow-torch in action here.

I had spent all afternoon traipsing between various B&Q, Homebase and Sainsburys’ stores. Now I can make a whole host of lovely dishes, that include crème brulee, toasted almonds (in seconds, SECONDS I tell you!), peppers sans plastic skin (they’re a real chore to swallow) and beautifully charred chicken that otherwise looks anaemic. The Dude did tease to say that I’ll use it just the once before it starts gathering dust (but I’m going to use the thing at least twice a week, just to prove a point). Another cool purchase this weekend was at good old TK Maxx. Now, this is an interesting store; because although it’s laid out and made to feel like a bargain store, there are very few items there that actually are a bargain. TK Maxx have some very canny marketing bods, who make you think goods there are cheaper. 20150608_201215 But this £1 Spanish pepper pot really put me in a good mood, as I wanted some as soon as I heard José Pizarro mention it on Saturday Kitchen for one of his recipes. I used it when making potato salad and its subtle kick was lovely along with the teaspoon of wholegrain mustard in the mayonnaise. In between writing, trialling out some fab new recipes (more on that later) and doing some interesting research on vaping (for my day job), it’s been a pretty busy week. I hope you’re all having fun and enjoying the nippy but sunshiney weather. See you soon. RAxx