Food & Drink notes

Perfect buns; Cut spice work; Nothing to beef about; The way to the new whiskey bar
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Perfect buns

Perfect buns

Silicone is proving to be a flexible friend for home bakers and home makers. No more horribly clattering, easily scratched metal trays. It's silent, bendy, brilliant stuff that amazingly doesn't melt in the oven or the dishwasher or crack in the freezer. You don't need to grease it, and it comes in brilliant colours. Thanks to Marks and Spencer and its retro chic range for the home, housewives can be desperately glamorous as we dust and bake. Acheive perfect buns (à la Teri Hatcher and her gal pals) with this silicone bun tray for £10.

Cut spice work

If endless ingredients put you off cooking Indian invest in 'Indian in 6' by Monisha Bharadwaj (Kyle Cathie, £14.99), the follow up to her award-winning 'Stylish Indian in Minutes'. The 100 original, family-friendly recipes in this pick-up-able and cookable book use no more than six ingredients (plus vegetable oil, salt and ginger-garlic paste) without sacrificing flavour or authenticity. Stand out recipes: Nargisi kofte (like a spicy Scotch egg), Galavati lamb kebab sprinkled with rosewater and cinnamon chicken.

Nothing to beef about

Isn't it obvious? It's probably the country's only organic pastrami. Graig Farm Organics (01597 851655/ www.graigfarm.co.uk), meat producers for 10 years and winner only last week of the Soil Association's best home delivery retailer award, has fleshed out its great selection of organic food with duck and turkey ready meals, and boxes of fish from sustainable sources, including trout, salmon and smoked Arctic char. Their own pastrami, in slices or a joint, is around £30 a kilo.

The way to the new whiskey bar

Think refreshing mint juleps rather than raddled rockers allergic to daylight when you make Kentucky Bourbon your spirit of summer. Full of southern soul, Bulleit Bourbon, the latest American whiskey to cross the Atlantic, is made to the Bulleit family's 170-year-old recipe, and comes in a medicinal-looking 19th-century style bottle. Drink over ice (not straight from the bottle) to appreciate the mellow vanilla and honey flavours, or in a julep to keep cool on sultry evenings. Rockwell, Zeta, the Met and Sanderson bars stock it. Our buy a bottle for £17.99 from select stores including Microzine, London N1 ( www.microzine.co.uk).

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