Yotam Ottolenghi: 'I loved the pizza but Hassam had a massive cat I was terrified of'

My earliest food memory… When I was about five I remember going to a bakery in the Old City in Jerusalem run by a big man called Hassam. He used to bring us sesame-crusted pizzas from a hole-in-the-wall oven. I loved the pizza but he had a massive cat that I was absolutely terrified of.

Forget Sex and the City, here come the 'real' Girls

You might be tempted to describe a comedy written, directed and produced by its central character as a "vanity project". But from the very first frames of Girls, Lena Dunham's sharp, next-generation riposte to the gloss and fantasy of Sex and the City, it's obvious vanity cannot be calling the shots.

Forget Sex And The City, here come the Girls

First Night: Girls, Sky Atlantic, Mondays, 10pm

Forget Sex And The City, here come Lena Dunham's Girls

Ink pasta with samphire and squid

Serves 4

The Emperor's New Clothes: The Italians

The Italians who face England tonight think they are better dressed, better fed, better lovers. Simmy Richman begs to differ

Deborah Ross: Feed me! The mantra of a student who hasn't eaten all term

If you ask me, I would like to tell you a story, which I suggest you take as a warning. This is a story about a mother whose son comes home from his first year at university for the summer. The mother is quite shocked at his appearance, as he is thin and peaky, and looks as if he has been doing what he has been doing: that is, living on economy squash and reduced-price bread so he can better spend his overdraft on drink, clubbing, drugs and a new T-shirt that looks like all his other T-shirts.

Natalie Haynes: Thanks for the advice, but my fridge contents don't lie

Notebook: Surely food safety can be distilled into one simple rule... nuke it, and the stuff that might have killed you gets nuked, too

Deborah Ross: Son, your pasta calendars were only ever average, if that

If you ask me: When I said Mummy and Daddy can't be watching you all the time, but Santa is, that was also a lie
Pot Noodle: the snack equivalent of 'Zoo' magazine

Something for the ladies. Noodles in a pot

Pot Noodle, the instant noodle "dish" from Unilever, has never bothered the female market too much before. Coming in such delightful flavours such as Doner Kebab, Bombay Bad Boy and Sticky Rib, it's the snack equivalent of Zoo magazine; women wouldn't be caught dead with it. (Look, I'm not saying I've never bought one, but I think we can agree who they are targeted at).

Tagliolini with ceps and bacon

Tagliolini with ceps and bacon

Serves 2

Nick Goodway: Let's box clever and give big-hitter Terry a watchdog role in the City

Midweek View: If he's got a problem, he confronts it. There's a touch of philanthropy and a wave of the Union Jack too
Elegant: Bergerie de l'Hortus Rouge Pic Saint Loup 2009
Chrissie Wellington competes during the Challenge Roth Triathlon in Germany last year

Chrissie Wellington: 'Sometimes your worst races are your biggest triumphs'

I call myself an accidental athlete I first realised my capacity for endurance while I was [working for an NGO] in Nepal. I would cycle every day with friends and Nepali sherpas, and I outperformed all of them. So I started doing marathons and triathlons when I returned to the UK, and didn't stop. I'd never in a million years thought I could win the Ironman World Championships once, let alone four years running.

Mele e Pere, 46 Brewer Street, London W1

Take a trip down the apples and pears to Soho's sensational Italian newcomer

Blue-collar guy: Zach Braff rehearsing 'All New People'

Braff the medicine man has last laugh

All New People was a hit in New York and is coming to the West End. Its star and creator, Zach Braff, tells Alice Jones he's happy to leave Scrubs behind him

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Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam