Sunday lunch in Brick Lane

Brick Lane is one of my favourite London’s area: vintage shops, street markets, trendy people, food markets, clubs, bars…the list could go on and on.
You can literally go there at any time of the day and find something cool to do, or something tasty to eat.

It’s famous for its delicious Indian restaurants (which are really nice, although so far my super uber favourite one is Tayyabs, which is not exactly in Brick Lane, but not far away either), however if you go there during the weekend (especially on Sunday) you will also have a wide range of ethnic delicacies to choose in the food markets.

Last Sunday we woke up late, still feeling slightly knackered from the night before…we were hungry but couldn’t be bothered to cook…we were tired and wanted to stay home, but it was sunny and hey, we all know this is not something usual in London, so Brick Lane suddenly sounded like the place to go.

We met with some friends, walked a bit around the food stalls just to have a look and try to decide what to get (you have so much choice that it is really hard to pick one thing!), and once we made our minds we sat outside and enjoyed our meals.

Needless to say that it was lovely…the food, the company and just the possibility to sit outside in the sun (after such a rainy summer we do deserve some sun!). 🙂

This time I gave Ethiopian food a try…despite all those curries, burritos and tempura were so appealing, I really felt like having something light and healthy and those Ethiopian dishes were just what I was looking for: injera (Ethiopian soft pancake) with three sauces, chick peas, beet root salad, olives, and those little bright green pearls whose name I don’t remember (help me if you know it!). 🙂

Ethiopian meal

Ethiopian meal

Here below you can find a few other pictures from the food market.

Aren’t you hungry now? 😉

Focaccia: mediterranean flavours

What’s the best way to end a busy and super funny weekend?
Easy: bake something tasty and possibly that reminds you of your home country. Olives, cherry tomatoes, olive oil and rosemarine…mmh I love them!

Yesterday evening when I came back home after having watched the Wimbledon final in a local pub, I opened my cupboard and luckily I had all the ingredients I needed…well, almost. I didn’t have any yeast, but hey, one of the things I love about London is that you can find anything anywhere, at any time.

For the dough I used around 600 grams of flour, one sachet of dried yeast, one glass of milk (I found out it makes the dough softer) and a pinch of salt.
First you have to melt the yeast in a glass of warm water (please note that the water should not be too hot or it will destroy the yeast’s effect), when ready pour it over the flour and start mixing. When all the water has been absorbed, pour the milk (better if slightly warm) and keep mixing till you get a smooth and soft dough.

Place it on a baking tray (the same one you are going to use to bake it) and let it rise for about one hour.
Advice: warm up the oven for a few seconds, turn it off and put the dough…this will make the rising process faster!

Once the dough has doubled its size you can start dressing it. I normally put olives, cherry tomatoes, a hint of rosemarine and pepper, and I finish everything with some olive oil.

Bake for about 40 minutes in the oven at 180°C and enjoy it! 🙂

Mediterranean focaccia!

Mediterranean focaccia!

How to start your weekend: spinach and ricotta ravioli

Hi all!
I woke up in a very good mood this morning and I felt like preparing something nice for lunch.
I opened the fridge to get some inspiration and I thought “mmh ravioli! it’s been a while since the last time i ate them!”
I have seen my mum preparing them thousands of times but I had never tried to make them myself. I must admit it has been pretty easy, but you just need quite a lot of time to prepare the whole thing.
First of all I have boiled some fresh spinach and let them cool down.
Once they are cold, smash them a bit with a fork and then add ricotta, parmigiano cheese, one egg, salt, nutmeg and a bit of ground pepper.
The tricky part is preparing the pasta dough! You might think “easy, it’ just a matter of mixing all the ingredients together..well yes, sort of! You really have to be careful to get the correct texture..not too sticky nor too dry!
I have used two eggs and for the flour..well, you just have to add it little by little until you get the right texture.
Once the dough is ready, you can start filling it: add one full teaspoon of ricotta & spinach filling and put it on the dough at a distance of about 5 cm from each other. Once you have filled one whole line, fold it and then finally shape your ravioli.
How to cook and dress ravioli: boil the ravioli in some salty water till they start floating.
When they are ready put them in a pan with some melted butter and sage. Stir fry for few seconds, add a lot of parmigiano cheese and enjoy!!!

Butter&Sage ravioli filled with spinach and ricotta

 

Butter&Sage ravioli filled with spinach and ricotta