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Food and drink summary - 2014

What did you eat in 2014 that you’d never eaten before? What did you drink in 2014 that you’d never drunk before?


I think I had never eaten these things before:

Fruit and vegetables:
Jackfruit
Crispy kale
Samphire
Tamarillo
An actually ripe persimmon

Savoury/salty:
Black salt
Pink salt
Salt made from tears of laughter
Vegetarian haggis and cheese toastie
Tartiflette
Haggis and black pepper flavoured crisps
Mock abalone
Kimchi
Packing chips

Sweet things:
Rosewater shortbread
Pain d'épices
Traditional Iraqi biscuits
Vegan pumpkin and chocolate chip cupcake
The largest cake sculpture in the world
Sweet potato doughnuts
Harry Potter jellybeans – flavours such as earthworm (or maybe it was dirt), earwax, and booger.

Chocolate:
Pineapple and inca berry chocolate
Juniper and pine chocolate
Vanilla cake (cucumber and vanilla flavoured white chocolate)
Dairy Milk Ritz

Ice-cream:
Royal falooda ice-cream
Chocolate avocado vegan ice-cream (homemade)
Pumpkin pie vegan ice-cream (homemade)
Yuzu ice-cream mochi
Green grass nitro ice cream
Papaya ice-cream

Drinks:
Vietnamese iced coffee
Cold brew coffee
A secret garden
Dancing in the moonlight
A Pandan Mule (Pandan leaf infused Wyborowa vodka, lime juice, lemongrass & ginger syrup, kumquat, ginger beer)
Maple and chamomile tea
Violet lemonade

What did you eat or drink for the first time this year? (No animals, please.)

Tags:

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I went for Vietnamese food for the first and second time, and we had pho and something made of tofu, mushrooms and aubergine and red bean pudding.

Also, a mango curry in a Keralan restaurant.

Smoked tofu, which I'd probably actually eatne before and not realised, but I cooked for the first time.

They all sound delicious!

The only three I can remember are:

Ewedu, a very simple Nigerian green vegetable dish made from Corchorus leaves. It's quite mucilaginous, which makes it good for eating with...

Eba, a Nigerian staple food (swallow) made from fermented and pre-fried cassava flour (gari). It's really easy to make — you just mix the gari with boiling water and stir until it forms into a pliable dough, then you pull bits off and eat them. Even simpler than making Smash. It has a slightly sour flavour from the fermentation.

I first had these two things at restaurants, and then made my own at home. The restaurant eba is on the right in this photo (it's sometimes yellow and sometimes white — the difference is whether the pre-frying was in palm oil or not). I don't seem to have a photo of cooked ewedu, but the leaves are in the packet on the left in this photo.

The final one is something quite different:

Brandy and soda, which I'd seen mentioned in lots of novels but somehow didn't get around to trying until this year. It is delicious!

They all sound interesting!

I need to work out a good vegetarian alternative to the meat that usually goes into Nigerian stews. Ewedu is often served alongside a tomato stew, and the tomato stew has some sort of substantial lumps of proteiny stuff in it. Tofu would be too soft, I think. Possibly TVP chunks would work.

Oh, and that's reminded me of another thing I ate for the first time this year – packet-mix TVP curry. I think it came from a Sri Lankan shop. The packet has dry TVP chunks and a sachet of spices; you soak and squeeze out the TVP, then fry it with the spices, then add coconut milk and simmer. It was really tasty! I'd been expecting the flavour sachet to have MSG and artificial flavourings and so on, but it was basically just spices. There was no "off" flavour to the TVP and the texture was good too.

Shame I can't remember where it came from, since it had been in the cupboard so long...

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