Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Best cafes: Assembly, Santa Cruz, California

ML's mother-in-law and her husband are quite the brunch fans and have been testing hotspots across the pond on our behalf... they found this rather awesome spot in their local town and wanted to share it with the ML crowd... just to make us a little bit more jealous of their sunshine/surfy/fluffy pancakes n beach barbecues lifestyle.

The eggs Benedict came de-constructed (only in the USA would the waiter not bat an eyelid at that request...).

Assembly is open 10-3pm at the weekend for brunch.

Sunday, 18 January 2015

The hotel with the mostest (granolas)

Four granolas and one muesli! Titchwell Manor in Norfolk not only has gorgeous views over the marshes and is in a fantastic spot for beach walks, bird spotting and general North Norfolky-ness, but also has the most impressive selection of homemade granolas. Hat's off...

Monday, 1 December 2014

Savoury bread and butter pudding with maple cured bacon

Savoury bread and butter pudding recipe here, and for the maple cure bacon, just drizzle maple syrup over bacon then grill...

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Breakfast included: Briery Wood, Windermere, Lake District

Every now again a hotel comes along that is just lovely, lovely, lovely.

We stayed at Briery Wood to do the Great North Swim. One of these brutish, outdoor, charity challenges that is very much in vogue at the moment (but very much less difficult than running an ultra marathon in the desert or doing an 'iron man', but still very fun and rewarding as we completed it for a fantastic cause, the Cystic Fibrosis Trust).

So, given that a chilly one-mile crawl was coming up, we needed a breakfast that didn't disappoint, and with fry-up most definitely off the menu, we wanted something wholesome and filling but not trouser-splittingly gluttonous.

Surroundings: The hotel overlooks Lake Windermere and is a 15-minute walk to it's shoreline or up to the town. It is set in its own pretty gardens with huge mature trees including a gorgeous monkey puzzle. The dining room tables are set out for each room or party in a rather quaint English holiday hotel kind of way - ours had a high chair for Mini ML. There are glass doors out to the garden and forgettable but homely decor. The lovely part was the staff - friendly, young and helpful, as well as the superb quality food.

Buffet: The usual cereals including a tasty muesli, pots of yoghurts, stewed prunes and fresh fruits including grapefruit and kiwi, were on offer as well as juices, teas and coffee plus freshly baked pastries. A cut-above the average hotel with a distinct absence of lots of sugary cereals and pallid fruit.

Hot stuff: Porridge was a welcome offering - we said yes to the cream and brown sugar, but there was also a substantial fry-up, poached or scrambled eggs cooked fresh to order and freshly ground coffee. Nothing earth shattering in terms of originality, but good quality ingredients and sound cooking.

Details: www.lakedistrictcountryhotels.co.uk/briery-wood-hotel, Ambleside Rd, Windermere, Cumbria LA23 1ES; tel. 015394 33316