Sunday, 15 September 2013

My Golden Ticket to Lick!

Guest post from Mum (who normally blogs at The Beesley Buzz):

Not one but two foodie experiences for The Brilliant Chef this week! Not only did he get to do a Spice Masterclass last Thursday but yesterday he joined me on a special day out to my home town of Brighton.

I was the extremely lucky winner in a competition run by LEON restaurants (more about them later) by telling them why I wanted to spend a day in Brighton eating Lick frozen yogurt and having lunch at popular Brighton vegetarian café Idyea.

Lick is one of those brands that has a story behind it. I love brands with stories behind them.

I think that is why I am such a big fan of Moshi Monsters (almost as big a fan as the kids!) It is stories behind brands like these that show how a dream mixed with enough passion and determination can become reality - and a very successful reality too!

So we headed off to the Lick shop in Brighton's popular North Laines and started our day by picking up my golden ticket which would give me as many Lick's as I could eat in a day.

So we got started...

Even T didn't want to miss out and shared some with us.

Then a play in the newly refurbished play area at The Level.

Followed by a lovely lunch at Idyea. It wasn't the best equipped place for kids as it does get very busy at lunchtimes (well they have been voted Best Café in Brighton & Hove's Foodie Awards so what do you expect), and we had to manage a standing up nappy change for T in the teeny loo, but the fantastic food and the wonderful service more than makes up for it. They were very welcoming of the children with the lovely waitress making a fuss of T. As the prize was supposed to be for me and a friend, we were actually very grateful that they didn't mind us turning up as a family and paying the extra.

They have a great formula for the food too - healthy fast food. Pick a main from a selection of vegetarian options ready to serve, 2 sides (either from a selection of hot veg or selection of salads) and then 2 toppings like beetroot chutney, sour cream and chive dip, hummous etc. You can also get the food to takeaway if you like.

As the weather started to drizzle we popped into the Brighton Dome which happened to be joining in with the Heritage Open days weekend. We enjoyed a look around the museum and doing a kids trail following clues.

A visit to Brighton would not be complete without heading to the beach.

 And a visit to the beach would not be complete without J getting soaked in the sea. Yes he did his usual trick of getting his shoes, socks and trousers soaked in the sea and had to endure an uncomfortable journey home.

Not before one last stop at Lick!

I promised an extra word about LEON so I just wanted to highlight one of the great things they do (as well as running great restaurants with healthy, tasty food of course). Their Cook 5 challenge is a way of getting kids cooking in the kitchen and I have been meaning to get D involved for ages. They have 15 recipes for kids to cook 5 of and upload photos. You can cook other savoury dishes too if you like. This is totally what D's The Brilliant Chef blog has always tried to do - encourage kids to have a go at cooking ANY type of food and not just things like cakes and cookies that a lot of kids recipes end up focused on.

Sadly the Lick shop in Brighton is closing soon - bizarrely due to Lick's success in being sold through other outlets like Ocado and COOK for example. Owen and Ky (Lick's founders) no longer have time to run the shop too. Look out for them at events and festivals still though.

Thank you Lick and Idyea for a wonderful day, and thanks to LEON for running the fab competition.

Friday, 13 September 2013

A taste of spice!

Yesterday me and daddy got to visit Patak's development kitchen for a spice appreciation masterclass where I got to meet the Patak's wonderful New Product Development chef. Even though I have gone back to school after being homeschooled for a few years, this day was so important if you want to be a chef like I do so it was way more important than school!

Daddy got picked to be Patak's official curry taster for this year and we have already had some really cool things happen like when Anjali Pathak came to our house to do a masterclass with me and daddy and also I got to interview her

She even wrote a blog post about me! That was really amazing because lots of other children like baking things like cookies and cakes like my brother and sister do, but I love to cook all sorts of food and I especially love smelling and tasting spices!

Patak's chef showed us his selection of spices. I couldn't believe my eyes - there were so many! Lots of different colours, flavours and smells.

I got to see fresh curry leaves and black salt (which actually looks pink when it is ground up). I got to taste sugar cane jaggery which is a really pure sugar as it is sugar cane juice which is cooked until it is solid. I even tasted tamarind which I loved! One type tasted really sour and the other type was really sweet.
Then the best bit - eating lunch when it was ready; there was butter chicken, achari lamb and cod in madras and coconut sauce - they were all yum but I loved the butter chicken best. 

Thank you Patak's for a nice and spicy day!

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