Spiced Plum Streusel Cake with Toffee Glaze – David Lebovitz

One of the blogs I visit frequently is David Lebovitz’s Paris based site.  I went to University in Paris and I still find it to be the most charming city in Europe.  Yes, it’s true, Parisians work in mysterious ways and it can take you a lifetime to finally get clued up on all the intricate do’s and don’ts (I gave up after 4 years) but the wealth of culture to be found is incredible.   Since I have no plans to move back to the Paris in this lifetime, it’s nice to be able to live vicariously through David.

I like that his site gives me access to a professional chef’s experience, recipes, tips and adventures.  There are so many great food blogs out there.  The overwhelming majority of which are run by enthusiastic amateurs and a lot of them are really charming but really,  who wants to learn from a novice?  David Lebovitz worked at Chez Panisse for 13 years!  He is someone I want to learn from. Read more of this post

Henne – The Chicken Place

I had been looking forward to eating at Henne for literally months!  I read about it in the Lonely Planet guide to Berlin and the quirkiness of a place that served just chicken intrigued me to no end.  It must be really good chicken!  If they have managed to keep their doors open for 100 years and haven’t caved in and offered a vegetarian option or some pork (in the land where pork is king). Read more of this post

Apple Gallery – Apfelgalerie

For me, smell is the only one of the five senses that has the ability to yank you by your collar so that your feet dangle clear off the present and hurl you into some distant memory. That is what happened to me when I stepped into the Apfelgalerie in Schöneberg.  Wham! I was no longer a thirty something wife and mother of one, all of a sudden, I was a little girl, hiding behind my father while he negotiated with a man about some apples. Read more of this post

Asian Noodle Salad

Just because the summer is over, doesn’t mean you have to forgo salads.  There are still plenty of options out there.  It’s so easy to fall into the sandwich trap here in Berlin.  Every corner store has a bakery, all you have to do is nip out and buy a “brotchen”, smear on some butter or mayonnaise, some cold cut or other and basta!  Don’t get me wrong, sandwiches can be the bomb!  A BLT with responsibly sourced bacon can totally rock your world but a “woops it’s lunchtime, need fuel” sandwich is depressing! Read more of this post

Soluna Brot und Öl – Bakery

My Twitter friend misterrios told me about this place and then when I read about it on Berlinrefied I knew I had to go pronto! Little L and I hopped in our right hand drive Smart and drove down to Kreuzberg.

Gneisenaustrasse is a pretty tree lined street with cafes and quirky little shops.  I went into a design shop (it seemed like a young designer co-op) adjacent to Soluna and gave the girl behind the till a big toothy smile, she just looked at me – totally dead pan, not even an eye lid flutter.

Then I went into Soluna and did my whole “Do you speak English?” spiel.  Different girl, same dead pan expression!

Sometimes I get the feeling that if your face is piercing-less, your clothing matched, or if you don’t have a haircut that features big chunks missing from conspicuous places – you are just not welcomed in some shops in Berlin?  Maybe I come across as Bourgeois (my actual Bourgeois friends must be keeling over at the moment, kicking their feet in the air and hooting with laughter at the thought of that)?  Whatever, there is no denying that little L, myself and my beige rain coat were not met with open arms in Kreuzberg.  It’s extremely irksome, my exterior appearance in no way hinders my ability to appreciate good bread.  If anything I am in a better position than most people who wear Birkenstock Clogs outside their home, because I have had access to some of the best places that dot our green little globe.

Hold on, hold on! Before you delete the bookmark of my blog with a disgusted sneer on your face!  I have done my time!  I waitressed at a Deli in Primrose Hill, which hands down has the highest concentration of bored rich women willing to make you squirm just so they can show off to their gaggle of girl friends.  And I have suffered, I have had to make the same woman her coffee 4 times because it wasn’t hot enough or be lectured by the boyfriend of another when after insisting that her Cappuccino be “bone dry” complained that I hadn’t given her enough milk.  Dry means just foam not milk you silly cow!

So yes, I have been the girl on the other side of the counter – as a result I go to great lengths never to make the person on the other side feel uncomfortable.  It’s a conundrum.  I am considering getting a clip on piercing and maybe some hair pieces but then I might look like a female version of Inspector ClouseauRead more of this post

Croissants and Meryl

I finally got my DVD store membership the other day. To celebrate I rented “It’s Complicated” with Meryl Streep – whom I adore! There is one scene where she makes fresh croissants. Cue montage with Meryl,music and croissant triangle faux bikini top – rent it, you’ll see what I mean.

My “monkey see / monkey do” button switched on and I thought “Heyyyyyy…. I could eat some fresh homemade croissants right about now…” I immediately began to fantasise about Ottolenghi like, perfect croissants. Croissants with so many layers that they shatter into slivers when you take a bite. You find shards of crisp croissant hiding in the the oddest places for the rest of the day, and you have such fond memories that you eat said shard even if the place it was nestled in was less then ideal.

But between the craving and the eating lay 24 hours. Read more of this post

Carrot, ginger and coriander soup

(My Mac is in the shop getting a new hard drive so apologies in advance for photo quality, layout, etc. This post was written on the iPad which they should rename the iPain-in-the-A**)

It’s undeniably fall in Berlin. The relentless rain is constantly chasing little L and I indoors. People used to ask me how I was able to live in rainy London? The thing is, the weather in London is quite pleasant! It certainly doesn’t make me think that I should have an ark at the ready.

That is so English of me though isn’t it? Complaining about the weather! Read more of this post


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