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A-Z tour of Latin America – Argentina

Sticking with A’s, we board an Aeroflot Ilyushin Il-76 and continue our culinary journey with an 18-hour, 15,668 km, direct flight to Argentina (in-flight movie – ‘Taken 3’, vegetarian option – chicken). Touching down at Buenos Aires International Airport, we take a cab to the tiny unspoilt fishing village of Mar del Plata where, overlooking the deserted picturesque bay, we …

Braised aubergine with yoghurt dressing – Banjaan borani

Having acquired a taste for lockdown travel we thought we’d take a relaxing last-minute weekend break to Afghanistan. Along with the Speedos, flip flops and factor 50, we packed Parwana – Recipes and stories from an Afgan kitchen – the latest addition to the culinary wing of the Yumblog library. Banjaan borani is the first recipe taken from this book, …

Braised pointed cabbage with melted Emmental and crispy crumb topping

So after queueing for only ten hours at Passport Control, here we are back in Blighty (108,013 mainly avoidable Covid deaths and counting). We had filled our suitcases with all sorts of tasty European goodies gathered on our tour but regrettably, after negotiating the barbed wire and daisy cutters of no-man’s land, all were confiscated by a UK border guard …

A celebration of Europe #17 – Luxembourg

In contrast to yesterday’s simple snack, today we’re heading to Luxembourg for something a little more refined. Luxembourg, officially the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, is a landlocked country in Western Europe. It is bordered by Belgium to the west and north, Germany to the east, and France to the south. As of 2020, Luxembourg citizens had visa-free or visa-on-arrival access …

A celebration of Europe #14 – Italy

Arguably an obvious choice. Undeniably a tasty one. There was mild panic when a trip to Sainsburys was met with an empty shelf where the Mozzarella should have been. Hopefully this was down to an oversight by the manager rather than a consequence of Brexit, but it is too dismal to speculate. On the fruitless walk back along London Road …

A celebration of Europe #9a – Finland

From Estonia we head north a little bit to Finland, a Nordic country located in Northern Europe. Finland shares land borders with Sweden to the west, Russia to the east, and Norway to the north. Finland is a top performer in numerous metrics of national performance, including education, economic competitiveness, civil liberties, quality of life and human development. In 2015, …

A celebration of Europe #8 – Estonia

Today we are eating pie in Estonia, a country in Northern Europe which borders the Baltic Sea and Gulf of Finland. Including more than 1,500 islands, its diverse terrain spans rocky beaches, old-growth forest and many lakes. Estonian citizens receive universal health care, free education and the longest paid maternity leave in the OECD. It is one of the world’s …

A celebration of Europe #6 – Czech Republic

The challenge Yumblog faces as a vegetarian/fish/seafood blog, is that many countries in Project EU lean towards a meat-centric and essentially pig-based diet. Added to this, fish dishes from landlocked countries invariably feature carp – a best-avoided flaccid, grainy creature which tastes of mud and has a texture not dissimilar to tripe. On a 2009 visit to Prague (some photos …

A celebration of Europe #2 – Belgium

Unfortunately Andrew the Fishmonger was closed today so we were forced to resort to the Sainsbury’s chiller cabinet of vacuum-packed disappointment. As I picked over the hermetically sealed packets of sweaty fillets I couldn’t help but recall the magnificent fresh fish departments of Spanish supermarkets. Anything with a gill, tenticle, sucker or shell that had ever swum, slithered or drifted …

Tuscan cannellini bean & cavolo nero soup

If you are the impulsive sort who starts cooking a dish before fully reading the method, and then 10 minutes before your planned meal time come across the instruction ‘marinade for a fortnight’, then please read the recipe below thoroughly as it contains not only ‘simmer for two hours‘ but also ‘soak overnight‘. That said, forewarned is forearmed, and planning …

yumblog - leek carbonara

Leek Carbonara

As I had to line up outside the greengrocers in a long socially-spaced covid queue for over twenty minutes to buy, among other things, these three handsome leeks, I thought they should (in true Masterchef style) be made the ‘star of the dish’. This is a modified, and in my ‘umble opinion, much improved Jme Oliver recipe.

Potato, Leek and Gruyère tart

As the result of a Christmas spent in France hosted by, among others, Jean-Pierre the moustachioed turophile, we had pretty much vowed to stay away from cheese for long into the new year. That was until, in an idle moment, we happened across this tempting Potato, Leek and Gruyère tart from the ever reliable and inspirational Gourmet Traveller website. Be …

Maalu Miris – Peppers stuffed with spicy potato in a coconut sauce

Here’s wishing a ‘Happy New Year’ to all our lovely readers. In many ways 2017 wasn’t the best, but trust me 2018 is going to be great. The Tories will implode under the sheer weight of their incompetence, corruption and lies, Corbyn will march us joyfully towards a new Socialist dawn, Brexit will be cancelled, Greggs will be nationalised, and …

Courgette & halloumi ‘falafels’ with spicy tomato salsa

Thought it would be safer to put ‘falafels’ in inverted commas as the absence of chickpeas and the inclusion of halloumi, would probably leave us open to criticism from ‘The Guild of Master Falafel Makers‘ as well as purists, pedants, trolls, stupid people and no doubt the odd het up vegan. We here at Yumblog don’t want any trouble, especially as …

Chana masala (chickpea curry)

Consider the humble chickpea. Nutritious, ubiquitous, tasty, cheap, and as versatile as a 46-piece socket set. It can be stir-fried, casseroled, tagined, enstewed, devilled, saladated, hummouserised, soupified, and in this case, masalaed. If you’re contemplating doing something interesting with a tin of chickpeas this weekend, we here at Yumblog Villas urge you to give this a go.