March 24, 2015

The Larder #1 | Celia's Saucer

G'day all and welcome to my new food series, The Larder. 

I spend a lot of time in my kitchen playing with different ingredients or drawing inspiration from delicious things I've eaten or have been kindly sent to taste. Home is also the only place I can borrow my housemate's camera to play with (he won't let me leave the house with it) and try to learn how to take half decent photos. Every weekend I end up with an abundance of both food and photos. The food goes to my office to share with tea but the photos and products?
I thought I'd share them with you.

First up, we have the mighty 'canéle', which is a traditional little cake hailing from Bordeaux, France. Famously flavoured with rum and vanilla, the cakes are encrusted with a caramel crunch and give way to a soft, eggy centre. 

Babelle, however, like to play with convention and have infused the canéle with all sorts of different flavours from rose (pictured below), to peanut butter, cherry and bitter orange. The people of Bordeaux aren't so sure but in London, anything goes and I'm a big fan. They're stocked exclusively at Fortnum and Mason's for now, with plans to expand later in the spring.
Rose Caneles from Babelle UK
There seems to have been a surge of 'single origin' products lately as the consumer becomes more interested in quality and heritage and this hot chocolate from Kokoa Collection is no exception. You may have seen the round discs of chocolate in cafés throughout the capital that are melted into a paste before being blended with hot milk. 

My personal favourite is the 'Venezuela', sourced from Sucre, Sur de Lago and Barlovento. It's a smooth 58% and is velvet-like in the mouth. Luckily, you can now buy it online in your regular Ocado shop from the sweet white hot chocolate all the way through to darkest Madagascan at 82%. 

I've not had another hot chocolate quite like it.
58% Venezuelan Hot Chocolate
Speaking of online shopping, I was thrilled to find these tinned figs from Baldjis priced at an excellent £1.09. Whipping up a batch of fresh pastry, I blind baked my little cases and filled them with these figs, a handful of smashed walnuts and a drizzle of maple syrup before popping them back into the oven to finish. They were lovely with a big spoonful of greek yoghurt.
Fig, Walnut and Maple Tarts
And finally, if you follow my Instagram, you'll have seen my well-documented obsession with JING Tea.

Now that I've given up coffee, I need to something to fill the rather large gap it has left in my daily routine.

JING's Rosebud Tea is not only ridiculously pretty but sweet and fragrant. It's just the thing for calming the mind and also makes a great digestive. It does contain a little caffeine mind, but only enough to lift you gently, rather than dash like a mad horse through your veins.
Rose Tea from JING Tea
And so that's it for today's 'The Larder'.

What products have you been enjoying lately?

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