Boiling pots and pans……a floral apron…….....and a good dose of sibling rivalry!
Welcome to my first blog – let’s bring you up to date.
After our first ever event (the Spring Supper) we were all buzzing with excitement the morning after - desperate to do it all again – and
preferably within the next two hours. It was so great welcoming people into the
Spring Supper and getting some brilliant feedback at the end of the night as
the party atmosphere spilled into the Kitchen where we were clearing the night
away. Despite the hard work and testing moments, we all loved it and had been
bitten by the most potent of pop-up restaurant bugs.
We left Newcastle that morning seeing the world through different eyes – a world where a
restaurant could be erected in any space with close proximity to electric and
water, and where social creatures can make friends for life. Hysteria still in the air we finally called
time out when we were considering a pop-up restaurant on a park bench next to a
lake with an over-head pylon. To
paraphrase a tagline of a well known tubular potato snack - it’s
very difficult to stop once you start popping.
Since then we’ve scoured the North East for new places to pop – we found a fantastic attic space in Seven Stories for our Dinner by
Twilight Event, and a beautiful Church in Brighton Road for our Last
Supper event, and this week secured a vintage Village Hall for our August
event –1940’s Victory Party (details coming soon).
I’m well in to the 1940’s (not a phrase heard often enough in my opinion). My house is pretty much
the Cabinet War Rooms in replica, so I am really very excited about this
event. Unfortunately, I did get rid of a
lot of stuff, gas masks (a sad loss), ration books etc in a bid to be more
urban and contemporary but there still plenty for the offering. We usually have
to buy in/make props for our events but Hannah said that we can just bring my
house – she has an acid tongue at times. But she is so very right. I am stuck
in a design timewarp refusing to move - my boyfriend even wears a flat cap, and
we holiday in Cleethorpes. I am just one
step away from buying my clothes out of the back of a Sunday supplement.
We’ve also started to grow our own – My garden is only missing an Anderson
shelter now, as it sits nestled back to back with other terrace houses, a
make-shift green house, a compost bin and a Victorian bath filled with Rocket.
I’ve yet to bear fruit but the shallots and onions are looking very promising indeed. I hope to use these in some of the food I’ll
bring to the Next Big Event, but have fears that I will be increasing the
carbon footprint of the food (I am one third of the business and live in Stoke,
Hannah lives in Newcastle, and Tessa in Manchester). Oh how
difficult it is to merge nostalgia with modern environmental concerns.
I'd love to cook some potted crab for our Victory Party but the butter alone would have consumed 3 months’ rations. There’s something
really old fashioned about it. Like
opening a tin of salmon on a Sunday afternoon as a treat. I’m sure it wasn’t just me who has this
memory (I don’t think it’s a memory actually – more of something I once heard
my Nan say) but anyway you know what I mean. Oh dear I have been watching too
much ‘Darlin’ Buds of May’ again.
Anyway, so as far as the Potted Crab is concerned I fear I may have to go black market on this one and secure some contraband Butter from
a spiv, either that or try and pimp a Woolton Pie. I shall keep you
Aside from Potted Crab this week I’ve been testing some our recipes out for our next (big) events – do you see what I did there. Clever. On
Wednesday, I was testing out our Twilight Red Rose Red Onion tart for the
second time. It’s one of those dishes I
love to tweak with. It’s also really
nice, so having it for dinner every night is not really a bad thing. However, I
became a little complacent with my tart last night and left it on the stove to
sneak a peak at James and Ally in ‘Out of the Frying Pan’. During one of my
many ‘oh my god Ally, what are you doing?’ moments, I smelt the sweet smell of
burn. I ate humble pie after that. This won’t happen on the night – do not fear
– I am not allowed a TV when cooking for guests.
I fear for Ally I really do, the guy needs a break. It must be hard for him but I can’t help shouting at the TV when he appears. He is like a culinary version of a pantomime
lead, addressing his audience while they sit hands over their faces, just
peaking and cringing, shouting ‘he/she/it is behind you’. I’m convinced he is a lovely chap but I’m not
sure I’d trade him for our lovely Front of House, Hannah and Tess just
yet. Though who knows – people change!
Hannah has climbed yet another rung on the ladder of fame this week, when she was asked to film with the Country House Rescue team, in
preparation for a show they are doing in which they rescue a country
house. It’s a good concept. Hannah got
to meet Ruth Watson, and had a little chat about pop-up restaurants. All very
exciting stuff though I can’t help feeling a little jealous of Hannah’s
continued rise to fame and fortune. When we all know that Tessa and myself are
the real driving force behind this operation.......and I am a Lairdess, you
know, – 30 quid from Iwantoneofthose.com, but a Lairdess none the less. Forgot to mention that to Ruth, perhaps I
would have been on camera had they known I have blue blood. (Note:
when I researching this on Yahoo, someone had actually asked if the
Queen of England had blue blood, and if she does – why? Absolute classic – it
was probably Hannah asking because when we were watching The Curious Case of
Benjamin Button the other day, she asked me if it was a true story.)
Well I must go as I have to water my rocket and search the internet for an episode of Come Dine with Me I haven’t seen twice already. Until next time. xx
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