Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Masterchef @ IKEA

So way back when in September, the day after we moved from Cambridgeshire to Bath (as you do), we took a trip to IKEA in Bristol to buy some wardrobes for our new flat and of course the inevitable photo frames, candles and other things you never knew you needed. For me it was easy as I pretty much grew up in the aisles of Ikea or just left in the cinema to watch Cartoon Network. I think I was only forgotten once. But we also had both sets of parents for whom it was their first time. They could not get their heads around the fact that you had to go and get your furniture, let alone assemble it yourself.

Anywho, this isn't about IKEA's Service Concept, as amazing as it is. It's about a couple we saw in the kitchen section who had 3 trolleys between them that were stacked up with 10 of everything. Stock pots, skillets, spatulas, pasta strainers. You name it, they had it (and were frequently dropping on the floor with great clatters). We assumed they were student house landlords stocking up for their portfolio of 10 houses (it was September after all).

So back in February I got a call from my Mum that went something like 'Are you watching Masterchef?' (Of course I was), 'Well look in the background. Recognise those skillets, spatulas and pasta strainers?' She was right. The BBC/whoever produces Masterchef had taken the contestants to Bath to cater for the Jane Austen Festival and they were cooking in marquees on the lawn of the Royal Crescent. Lo and behold, they had been to IKEA a few days before and stocked up on everything you would need. The dates matched up perfectley as did the shiny pots and pans.

Why they didn't have this stuff already/hire it/bring it down from their studio I'll never know. But there you have it. Masterchef used the whole IKEA range of cooking equipment.

And on that bombshell...

Monday, 26 March 2012

Syd's Supper Club Opening Night! Friday 13th April

Here it is. The menu for our opening night here at Syd's Supper Club in Bath! We are very excited to be offering 6 seats at our table for this evening.

When: 7.30pm Friday 13th April 2012
Where: Central Bath

If you'd like to reserve your seat then please email us at and we'll end you the details.

The suggested contribution for this evening is £25. Please see the 'How it works' section for more details but standard rules apply. Bring your own tipple, but there's a free glass of bubbly on arrival.

Any further questions let us know but looking forward to seeing you soon! Spread the word! We'll hopefully be adding more dates soon...

Sunday, 25 March 2012

Friday the 13th...Unlucky for some...

Well we've had our measure up and after much huffing and puffing and moving of tables and book cases...we decided to keep the table pretty much where it is.

We've also confirmed the date, menu and capacity, we're just waiting on the ticketing to be sorted and people can sign up. So the details are:

Date: Friday the 13th April
Where: Syd's Secret Supper Club, Central Bath
Numbers: 6 Seats

Menu will be posted as soon as possible, hopefully tomorrow.

So spread the word! Syd is hosting a sumptuous supper and you're invited!

Monday, 19 March 2012

Even More Things That I've Cooked Before...

Stuffed Plaice Fillets with Roasted Red Peppers, Saffron Sauce and Sauteed Scallops
Tastes as good as it looks...

Pan-Fried Mackerel Fillets with Cannellini Bean & Tomato Stew, Crispy Belly Pork & Salsa Verde
Actually one of my least favourite dishes. Didn't enjoy the stew and mackerel isn't my best fish. But the belly pork was great. Would do that again but it takes a few days of prep...

 Lemon Tart
 Once again, I forgot to take a photo first. Whoops again...

Additional Things I've Cooked Before...

Ham & Mature Cheddar Tart with Mixed Dressed Leaves and 'Edible' Flowers
The tart was fantastic but the salad a little strong. They had all been foraged by a local supplier but still went well with the ham in the tart.

Goat's Cheese and Red Pepper Tortellini with Fresh Pesto
Perfect starter. Just enough but leaves you wanting more.

Pan Fried Fillet Steak with Cafe de Paris Butter, Fat Chips, Balsamic Roast Tomato, Stuffed Mushroom
Again, looks a bit messy but the tomatoes were done low and slow in the oven, keeping their juicy sweetness. The Beef confirmed to me that Fillet is overrated. It's tender but not as tasty as rump or sirloin.

Creme Brulee
 No explanation needed. But I forgot to take a photo before I started eating. Whoops...

Further Things I've Cooked Before...

Baked Smoked Haddock on a Bed of Buttered Spinach with Poached Egg, 'Local' Cheese& Curry Oil
The egg was poached the day before I think, but finished just before serving and still runny.

Pork Tenderloin 'En Papilotte' with Shaved Fennel, Apples, Cider and Thyme with Apple Mash, Honey Glazed Carrots and Celeriac
Pink but perfectly cooked pork.

Coconut Milk and Lemongrass Sorbet with Tuille Biscuits

The sorbet looks a bit grey but went very well with the tuille.

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Other Things That I Have Cooked Before...

Vichysoisse Soup (with Bread Roll)
One of the few times a new potato is used as a garnish?

Roasted Best End of Lamb with Maderia Sauce & Wild Mushrooms, Dauphinoise Potato, Green Veg Selection
I'd say the mushrooms were actually the revelation from this dish (well, lamb is a given isn't it...)

Seasonal Fruit with Gran Marnier & Orange Sabayon & Praline
 Was nice and fresh but a lot of hassle for what was a fruit salad with a posh cream-type-thing...

Things That I've Cooked Before...

Poached Salmon & Dill Risotto

 Went a bit OTT with the Parmesan on top. Tried it again without the expensive Saffron and it seems to work just as well.

Griddled Chicken Breast with Paysanne Vegetables, Roasted Cherry Tomatoes, Garlic & Basil Oil

Looks a bit messy with hindsight but tasted amazing. Organic, corn fed chicken etc. But the most satisfying part was the tomatoes. Very simple but very effective not to mention vibrant when oppoed into your mouth!

Dark Chocolate & Amaretti Pot

Breaking through into Victor Mike on top...

Lift Off!

So after many many months of umming and arrring, it seems that we might be at a stage where Syd's Supper Club is a go-go. I first heard about this concept a few years ago, buried the idea away due to lifestyle constraints but it kept coming back and niggling at me so here we are. The lifestyle constraints have gone and I now have permission from Miss Syd to get going.

We need to have a mock up of the exact lay-out (we could have the table in the living room or our 'study') on Monday. After that, I'll come up with a firm menu (I have a few of the courses sorted but the rest are up for debate), check we have the cutlery etc to match the menu and get cracking on everything else required. So not much then! We'll have a 'soft' opening the week before to check and then Friday it is.

Whoop whoop!