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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 …

A-Z tour of the world – Afghanistan

After the media sensation and critical acclaim of our ‘Celebration of Europe’ culinary road trip (‘A timely reminder of the beauty of cultural diversity’ – The Daily Mail), we thought we’d further defy the lockdown and travel the globe alphabetically in search of exotic treats and exciting flavours. Afghanistan seemed the obvious place to start as a, it starts with …

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 #16 – Lithuania

To be fair this ridiculously simple starter/bar snack may not be the best showcase for Lithuanian cuisine but apparently it’s a national institution and turns out to be very tasty to boot. Lithuania is a developed country with an advanced, high-income economy, a very high Human Development Index, a very high standard of living and favourable performance in metrics of …

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 #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 #7 – Denmark

Denmark is a Scandinavian country comprising the Jutland Peninsula and numerous islands. It’s linked to nearby Sweden via the Öresund bridge. Denmark is considered to be one of the most economically and socially developed countries in the world. The country ranks as having the world’s highest social mobility, a high level of income equality and the lowest perceived level of …

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 …

Laugeneck

Along with the pretzel pre-injected with butter, the Laugeneck has been one of the more innovative baked-goods finds from our many visits to the bakeries of Berlin. This triangle of loveliness is essentially a cunning hybrid of croissant and pretzel, taking the chewy butteriness of the former and encasing it in the salty crunch of the latter. Unusually for Yumblog, …

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 …

Apple, parsnip and potato soup

Parsnip, potato and apple soup

We here at Yumblog Villas are always reluctant to post soups (upload, not mail) as they are so simple we fear you might be insulted dear reader(s) and flounce off in one of your famed over-dramatic strops. However, lockdown lends itself to the desire for something comforting and warming and besides we had all the right ingredients in the form …

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.

Marmite spirals

Yumblog Junior rarely gets involved in the cooking process, preferring instead to be the slightly ungrateful and generally underwhelmed recipient of a parent-prepared meal. However pandemics, close proximity, home education and a lot of time to kill, means times are a changing and she’ll be sharing her parents’ enthusiasm for the kitchen whether she likes it or not.

muesli

Packaging-free Muesli

This recipe, such as it is, is based on the ingredients listed on the side of a box of Aldi meusli – the no brand, no frills, no nonsense, no dessicated coconut, budget Swiss-style, German engineered breakfast of choice here at Yumblog Villas. If you’re fortunate enough to live in a lefty bubble like the People’s Republic of Brighton (Hello …

kefir

Kefir

‘So what precisely is kefir?’ I don’t hear you ask. Well according to the top boffins here at Laboratoires Yumblog, kefir is a scientifically proven magic drink packed full of friendly bacteria so affable they’ll transform your stomach into a fragrant wonderland of probiotic loveliness. ‘Hmm, sounds interesting’ you quizzically reply, ‘but by what devilish witchcraft does one contrive this …

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.

Kale Mallung

Blimey, looking at the date of the Fondue below, it would appear we haven’t written a post for a year and a half. I would be inclined to feel guilt were it not for the troubling matter of the past 18 months, during which you dear reader(s) seem to have become crazed and in our absence voted for an ugly …