On The Menu: Donostia cod cheeks; Chin Chin labs; Thermapen; Courvoisier; Richard Bertinet

 

This week I've been eating... Donostia cod cheeks

I enjoy the theatrics of eating tapas, the procession involved. The wait for the dishes to come through the kitchen doors, born aloft by a waitress like a saint in a parade, the trail of dishes across the table, the mess, the crumbs on the table and oil on the cloth. It's the only type of drama you want in a restaurant: modest, anticipatory and concerned only with what's on the plate on the table.

But, of course, the food has to live up to that. At Donostia, a new Basque set-up in London's Marylebone, it does; surpasses it, even.

The biggest hit were the (pricey) cod cheeks (£12). The size of a king scallop, they're cooked in a mix of their own juices and a glug of olive oil, until the mixture starts to gelatinise. The result, though odd-sounding, is clean and fresh and the flesh, so ready to flake, is testament to the chef's skill, which, on the basis of this dish and the others, is considerable.

Hay fever

We're in the middle of Wimbledon fortnight, which pretty much means the same thing every year: rain (mostly of the on-off, cover-on/cover-off variety), references to Cliff Richard and, of course, strawberries and cream. Boring, boring and boring (if quite nice).

North of Wimbledon, up in Camden, Chin Chin labs, has decided to pray for sun, forget about Cliff and

create its own update on the summer dessert: a strawberry-and-cream ice cream, with, wait for it, added flavours of hay. Very, er, Wimbledon.

£3.95, chinchinlabs.com

Easy measure

On the Indy food desk, we like nothing better than slow cooking a large slab of meat. But even for long roasts, accuracy is required. A recent experiment in barbecued pulled pork (done in the oven, admittedly) required constant surveillance of the meat's core temperature, which made our latest gadget a very handy one. The Thermapen is a colourful little, instant-read thermometer which is sharp enough to pierce even a cheap pork shoulder cut. It's also fast and accurate enough for the slightly more scientific world of baking. Get poking.

£57.60, thermapen.co.uk

Best bar none

For two night next month – 13 and 14 July – Courvoisier will be reviving its century-old Institute of Grand Cocktails, with three of Britain's best bartenders. Mixologists from Annabel's (Mickael Perron), Rules (Chris Lacey) and 5 Hertford Street (Amanda Humphrey) will be mixing up a storm for those attending the night of drinks-cum-theatre at The Heritage Rooms in London's Bloomsbury Square.

£10, courvoisier.com

Honest crust

Your shortcrust not cutting the mustard? Can't master that tarte tatin? Let Richard Bertinet, classically trained patisserie chef and winner of BBC Food Champion of the Year a couple of years back, guide you pastry heaven with his lovely new cook book Pastry.

£20, amazon.co.uk

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookA delicious collection of 50 meaty main courses
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Food & Drink

    Recruitment Genius: Graphic Designer - Product Development

    £26000 - £29000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Product Development departm...

    Recruitment Genius: Assistant Manager - Visitor Fundraising

    £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Visitor Fundraising Team is responsi...

    Recruitment Genius: Developer

    £30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

    Recruitment Genius: Estates Contracts & Leases Manager

    £30000 - £34000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Estates Team of this group ...

    Day In a Page

    A nap a day could save your life - and here's why

    A nap a day could save your life

    A midday nap is 'associated with reduced blood pressure'
    If men are so obsessed by sex, why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?

    If men are so obsessed by sex...

    ...why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?
    The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3

    Jon Thoday and Richard Allen-Turner

    The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3
    The bathing machine is back... but with a difference

    Rolling in the deep

    The bathing machine is back but with a difference
    Part-privatised tests, new age limits, driverless cars: Tories plot motoring revolution

    Conservatives plot a motoring revolution

    Draft report reveals biggest reform to regulations since driving test introduced in 1935
    The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

    The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

    Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
    House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

    The honours that shame Britain

    Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
    When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

    'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

    Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
    International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

    International Tap Festival comes to the UK

    Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
    War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

    Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

    Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
    Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

    'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

    Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
    Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

    BBC heads to the Californian coast

    The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
    Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

    Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

    Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
    Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

    Car hacking scandal

    Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
    10 best placemats

    Take your seat: 10 best placemats

    Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory