Wednesday, February 28, 2018

10 of the Worst Ever Dishes on Kitchen Nightmares



It’s not always easy to feel pity for the hugely successful, belligerent brand that is Gordon Ramsay, but watching this compilation of the worst dishes ever on Kitchen Nightmares, the show that saw Ramsay attempting to save almost certainly doomed restaurants with a new menu, a refurb and a punchy script, there’s a feeling that some would equate to pity rumbling somewhere, tangibly inside.

This horror show of a multi-course menu features classics such as sushi pizza (salmon, crab, and mayonnaise, topped with, yes, cheese), a phallic kebab and a potentially life-threatening lobster bisque. How many of us would be able to finish any of these dishes?

If watching Ramsay squirm is your thing, then take a look at what he had to eat when he popped into The Late Late Show recently, or the time he just about managed to keep a still beating snake heart down in Vietnam.

3 Quinoa Burger Recipes For Your Next Barbecue


Quinoa burgers are a great vegetarian alternative to traditional burgers. By mixing cooked quinoa with a blend of vegetables, legumes or seafood you can concoct superb quinoa burgers perfect for any barbecue or get together.

Most quinoa burger recipes require the use of a food processor so the ingredients blend together nicely, however, if you don't have this nifty kitchen gadget on hand you can chop the ingredients finely and mix them by hand for a rustic touch.

Next time you make quinoa be sure to cook a double batch so you can use the leftovers to whip up these exquisite quinoa burger recipes. Click here for tips on cooking quinoa.


This quinoa burger recipe is made more substantial with the addition of cooked salmon and spinach. It is topped with a luscious avocado cream and served with peppery arugula.

Click here for this quinoa burger recipe.


Chickpeas and flaxseeds add a wonderful dose of protein and fiber to these hearty quinoa burgers served with a Valencia peanut sauce and crunchy red cabbage.


image via Jessica in the Kitchen

For a Mediterranean twist try whipping up these delectable quinoa burgers infused with sun-dried tomatoes, mozzarella, garlic powder and green onions.

6 Delicious Blends to Spice up your Cuisine


From baharat to za'atar, herb and spice mixes are indispensable to many cuisines around the world. Here are six blends to give your dishes a flavour boost.
6 Delicious Blends to Spice up your Cuisine

Bahārāt, berbere, dukkah, harissa, ras-el-hanout and za'atar: you're probably familiar with the names of these well-known spice blends which bring an irresistible touch of African and Middle Eastern flavours to any plate. But can you name the individual spices in each blend?

Let’s find out which spices and herbs are comprised in each blend, how they are used in local culinary traditions and how they are being interpreted by some of today’s most acclaimed chefs.


Origin: Middle East. Flavour: sweet and spicy.

Bahārāt (which simply means "spices" in Arabic) is a typical blend of Middle Eastern cuisines in general and especially those of Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Palestine. The traditional mix calls for cumin, caraway, cardamom, black pepper, nutmeg, cloves, cinnamon, paprika and allspice. However, each region has its own particular version: in Turkey, for instance, this blend includes mint, in Tunisia black pepper, cinnamon and dried rose petals, while in the Persian Gulf,dried lime and saffron are added to make it a more complex blend.

How is it used? Usually to marinate and aromatise meats (lamb, chicken, beef, fish), in soups and dishes made from pulses and vegetables.

Kevan Vetter, McCormick&Co’s executive chef, uses it in chicken dishes, but also to add flavour to soups and tomato sauces. Selin Kiazim, the chef of the Turkish-Cypriot restaurant Oklava located in London’s Old Street, celebrates its marriage with sepia and Salicornia. Anna Hansen of the London-based restaurant The Modern Pantry has chosen to use it with marinated lamb and lemon.


Origin: Horn of Africa. Flavour: bitter-spicy.

Indicated in the Flavor Forecast by McCormick&Co as being one of the hottest trends of 2018, berberé is the quintessential spice blend of Eritrea, Djibouti, Ethiopia and Somalia. This mix – which varies from one recipe book to another – requires red chilli pepper, ginger, cloves, coriander,allspice, rue, ajowan (whose aroma and taste recall those of thyme), fenugreek, cinnamon,nutmeg, black pepper, long pepper, garlic or onion.

Among top chefs, one of the most illustrious enthusiasts of berberé spice blend is Marcus Samuelsson who, in his Harlem restaurants (the Red Rooster and the Streetbird), is equally capable of presenting it on simple toast with ricotta and with a warm beef tartar or as a glaze for roast lamb. He even goes further than that: how would you react to a fruit salad combining pineapple, salt and berberé fermented honey.


Origin: Egypt. Flavour: hazelnut.

Also known as dukka or duqqa, this typical blend of Egyptian cuisine containing cumin, coriander, sesame, thyme, mint and pepper with the addition of dried fruit (mainly hazelnuts) and toasted seeds (such as pumpkin seeds). It is used to "bread coat" lamb, fish, chicken and even tofu, to flavour roast vegetables, feta, pasta, fresh fruit and azzimo bread (the ingredients are first dipped in olive oil and then coated with the spice mix).

So, how do chefs use it? Acclaimed chef Alon Shaya puts this complex blend to good use to spice up his grilled okra, while Ana Sortun of the Oleana, Sarma and Sofra restaurants in Boston enhances its bouquet equally well with vegetables (broccoli or carrots) or in desserts (dukkah macarons, for instance) or to give an unusual twist to some very special doughnuts.

Curtis Stone of Maude restaurant uses this spice blend in salads (Asparagus salad with rocket, dukkah, and labneh) and fish dishes (Dukkah-spiced salmon with baby carrots and yoghurt). 


Origin: North Africa. Flavour: midway between hot and spicy.

Particularly associated with Tunisia, harissa is also used widely in Libya, Morocco and Algeria. The addition of vegetable oils (olive oil for instance) turns the pounded spices into a thick creamy paste: most recipes for its preparation contemplate the mixing of various types of chilli pepper (such as chilli, serrano and baklouti) with garlic paste, coriander seeds, saffron, rose petals and cumin. Harissa plays a protagonist role in Tunisian cuisine: it is frequently used with goat meat or lamb, in fish stews with vegetable, in couscous or in lablabi, a particular type of chick pea soup normally eaten at breakfast.

This combination of grains and vegetables has been used in fine dining salads like the Bulgur, fresh harissa, peppers and cucumber signed by Alain Ducasse. Marcus Wareing uses it in his Harissa-glazed aubergines with coconut yogurt, roasted peanuts and coriander. This spice mix is the protagonist of the Lamb shoulder confit with rose petal harissa by Jonathan MacDonald of the Ox and Finch in Glasgow.

Origin: North Africa. Flavour: pungent.

Widely used in Morocco, this blend (which may even contain as many as twelve or more ingredients) varies somewhat from one recipe to another and every family, storekeeper or producer jealously guards its own recipe. Its name literally means "head of the shop" and indicates the best the grocer has to offer in the way of a spice mix.

Give or take an ingredient or two, it can contain: cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, coriander, mace, hot and mild paprika, cumin, nutmeg, turmeric and black pepper; it may even be sold with dried rosebuds, galangal, aniseed or fennel seeds, sorbus, tiger nut (also known as chufa), grains of paradise (or Guinea pepper), orris root, agnus castus or cubeb (also called Java pepper).

What about the chefs? Both Tom Kerridge, owner of the two Michelin starred The Hands and Flowers of Marlow (in Buckinghamshire), and the equally illustrious starred chef Ramon Freixa of the Hotel Único in Madrid have chosen to exploit its variegated notes: the former with his devil’s chicken and the latter in a dish of lamb shoulder and Iberian pork with shoots.

Heston Blumenthal uses it in his Slow-cooked lamb shank and giant couscous salad, while the duo Beverly Kim-Johnny Clark of the Parachute restaurant in Chicago bring the sweet perfume of North African ras-el-hanut to their emerald disc of Chopped broccoli conceals dates and pistachios.


Origin: Middle East. Flavour: assertive and grassy with notes of hazelnut.

Widely used throughout the Middle East, this blend of spices and herbs is typically associated with Levantine cuisine. The most popular recipe is from Lebanon and combines thyme, sesame seedsand dried sumac berries (with a fruity astringent flavour); neither is it uncommon for this blend to include marjoram and oregano. Traditionally sprinkled on azzimo bread, used dry or mixed with olive oil, it is widely adopted to flavour red and white meats, fish and grilled vegetables, as well as sauces and seasonings such as hummus, baba ghanush (also known as "eggplant caviar") or tzatziki.

In Rome, for instance, in the Testaccio district, Za'atar restaurant was inaugurated in May 2017, as the first restaurant of Middle Eastern haute cuisine, offering a menu of Lebanese, Israeli, Greek, Moroccan and Persian dishes, comprising Roast chicken with an outer crust of Za’atar, grilled tomatoes and lemon confit.

Senegalese Cuisine: 10 Dishes Worth Discovering


Senegalese cuisine is one of the richest cuisines in West Africa and a fusion of influences from France, Portugal, the Middle East, the Americas, and Vietnam.

Traditional food from Senegal is made for sharing where guests gather around a single dish, which is usually hearty and very fragrant and can be enjoyed with a spoon or a piece of bread. We discover more about this hot, flavourful and topical cuisine in10 dishes worth discovering, below.

The Ingredients of Senegalese Cusine

Fish naturally takes centre stage in Senegalese cuisine due to the countries geographical proximity to the sea. Mero, red carp, tuna, sole, monkfish, barracuda, swordfish ... The choice of fish is wide and the cooking of this dish varied from dried and braised to smoked or even fermented.

Meat is not so commonly featured although there are nevertheless beautiful cuts available to buy at the markets, like mutton, beef or goat, at a price. Chicken is generally more popular and less expensive than other meats.

Many Senegalese dishes also contain cereals like millet, fonio or rice as well as many vegetables liketomatoes, cabbage, carrots, eggplant, or less common vegetables like okra (green and fibrous vegetable), cowpeas (beans) or cassava roots.

Finally, fruit forms an integral part of the Senegalese culinary landscape with delicious yellow or green mangoes, mandarins, dates, papayas, guavas, coconuts, pineapples, plantains or avocados, as well as plenty of peanuts.

Typical Dishes of Senegalese Cusine


Thiéboudienne is considered the national dish of Senegal. It was invented by Penda Mbaye, a famous nineteenth-century cook, and consists of fresh fish, dried fish, rice and tomato-garlic-onion-chilli puree, all served with many vegetables like pumpkin, cassava, eggplant and carrot.


This typical dish in Senegalese cuisine is native to Casamance (south-west of the country). It consists of chicken pieces marinated in a mixture of onions, lime juice, vinegar and peanut oil, before being grilled over a wood fire and then cooked over low heat in its marinade. It's served simply with white rice.

Yassa can also be prepared with mutton or fish.


Caldou is a recipe based on fish cooked in palm oil and served with vegetables and rice, served with a lime sauce.


Bassi Salte is a couscous of millet. It consists of meatballs made of mutton, sweet potatoes, potatoes, white beans, cabbage, carrots, dates, raisins and a tomato sauce.


Mafe is a dish from Mali adapted to Senegalese cuisine. This is a rice base topped with a peanut paste sauce and usually accompanied by meat and vegetables.


Lakhou bissap is a dish from Central and Western Senegal made from semolina and meat. It can be accompanied by dried fish, sorrel and tamarind and looks like a soup.


Firire is a dish from Senegalese cuisine based on fried fish and onion sauce, served with fries, salad and bread.


Domoda is a rice-based dish with tomato and flour vinegar sauce - it's served with meat, fish or meatballs.


Pastels are small hand held deep-fried pastry pockets stuffed with fish and spices, which can be soaked in a tomato sauce. 


Bissap is not actually a dish, but the most popular drink in Senegalese cuisine. It's a refreshing juice made from hibiscus flowers, water, sugar, mint or orange blossom.

How to Make the -aise Sauces: 5 Great Video Recipes



Emulsifying eggs with oil or butter is a sure fire route to deliciousness. Take the three most famous -aise sauces for example: mayonnaise, hollandaise and bearnaise.

All start from this base, though the eggs remain raw in mayonnaise, while a bearnaise is simply a hollandaise with added shallots, pepper and herbs.

Home cooks can be a little intimidated when it comes to making these -aise sauces, whether it be a fear of using raw eggs or the propensity of hollandaise to split. So with that in mind we've collected five great video recipes, including tips from some of the world's best chefs, to show you how to make mayonnaise, hollandaise and bearnaise correctly.

It's easy when you know how!

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

André Chiang Wins Asia's 50 Best Lifetime Achievement Award 2018



Chef André Chiang of Restaurant André in Singapore and RAW in Taipei has been named as the recipient of the The Diners Club® Lifetime Achievement Award 2018 as part of this year's Asia's 50 Best Restaurants awards sponsored by S.Pellegrino and Acqua Panna.

Chiang, who trianed under the likes of Michel Troisgros, Alain Ducasse, and Pierre Gagnaire in France before opening his eponymous restaurant in 2010 is famous for his 'Octaphilosophy' approach to cooking, designing dishes around eight core elements: Pure, Salt, Artisan, Texture, South, Unique, Memory, and Terroir. See some of his most inspirational dishes.

The Taiwanese chef recently closed his Singapore flagship to concentrate on projects in his home country and told us last year that he was looking forward to rediscovering his homeland's cuture and produce, as well as helping to train a new generation of chefs.

Chiang will receive the award at the Asia's 50 Best Restaurants awards ceremony in Macao on 27 March, which you can live-stream in its entirety on Fine Dining Lovers. Also picking up an award on the night will be chef Bee Satongun of Bangkok's Paste restaurant, who has been named Asia's Best Female Chef 2018.

Watch a short video featuring Chiang below and see last year's list here.

Learn How To Make A Traditional Irish Stew



A traditional Irish stew is flavorful, hearty and comforting. Just the thing to warm you up on a cold day or wash down with a pint on St. Patrick's Day.

Naturally, every cook has his or her own special way to prepare a traditional Irish stew. Some cooks brown the meat, others don't. Then there's the lamb versus beef debate. Lastly, one must decide which root vegetables and herbs make the cut.

With that in mind we've gathered our favorite recipes for traditional Irish stew so you can experiment with the flavor combinations you like best. Ready to get cooking? 


Our recipe for traditional Irish lamb stew calls for a hearty blend of lamb, Guinness beer, barley, carrots and potatoes. Rosemary, parsley, thyme and celery contribute freshness and a welcome pop of color.

Click here for this traditional Irish lamb stew recipe.


Another great option is to make a traditional Irish beef stew also flavored with Guinness beer. Watch the video below to learn how to make it and click here for the full recipe.

Reunification Railway: A Tasting Trail Through Vietnam


On this historical railway from Hanoi in the north, to Ho Chi Minh City in the south, we take you on a Tasting Trail through the flavours of Vietnam.
Reunification Railway: A Tasting Trail Through Vietnam

Tasting Vietnamese food can feel like a journey in itself – from the umami punch of nuoc mam fish sauce to the tang of sweet chilli - often all in one bite. But to really know this regional cuisine we advise a physical journey, and what better way to do it than on Vietnam’s famous Reunification Express Railway?

From Hanoi in the north to Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) in the south, the Reunification line will take you over 1000 miles through lush green jungle and neatly tilled rice paddies, on mountain-hugging tracks that twist above bays and beaches on the shores of the South China Sea.

Built by the French in 1936, and shut down in 1954 when Vietnam was divided into North and South, the railway was bombed, broken up and abandoned during decades of war. But in 1976 Vietnam was reunified and the railway came back to life. Today it’s a 33-hour journey from Hanoi to Saigon, but many visitors hop on and off en-route to enjoy the sights and a cornucopia of endlessly inventive Vietnamese food.

Cultured, chaotic and captivating, the Vietnamese capital is an epicurean’s dream and the perfect place to start our Tasting Tour. Start with the classic Hanoi breakfast soup pho (pronounced ‘fuh’), with silky rice noodles, spring onions, chillies, coriander, and beef (pho bo) or chicken (pho ga). For a tasty variation try Pho Thin restaurant, which stir-fries its meat in garlic before adding it to the fragrant broth.

Pho Thin
13 Lò Dúc, Ha Ba Trung District, Hanoi

Another Hanoi staple is Bun Cha – grilled pork and rice noodle soup with fresh herbs – which US President Barack Obama and food writer Anthony Bourdain enjoyed at Bún Chà Hu’ong Liênwith a Vietnamese fried roll and cold Hanoi Beer (now known as the Obama Combo) for under $4.

Bún Chà Hu’ong Liên
24 Le Van Huu, Hanoi

Stop for a refreshing Vietnamese egg coffee at the extraordinary Railway Café, directly on the tracks, and chat to owner Thao about her competitive eating feats while you wait for a train to rumble perilously by.

The Railway Cafe
26, 10 Bien Bien Phu, Cua Nam, Ba Dinh, Hanoi

For dinner, head to the bustling Old Quarter, and Thai Dat for a thrilling street BBQ of grilled shrimp, crab, beef, chicken and even frog. And for more street food treats, check out the Weekend Night Market, or take a tour through hidden alleyways and secret nooks around Dong Xuan Market withUrban Adventures.

Thai Dat
66 Hang Bong, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

Bed down on the night train from Hanoi, and you’ll wake up to one of the most spectacular scenic stretches of coastal railway in the world between Hue and Da Nang. Alight at Da Nang and get a taxi to historic Hoi An. Once a major port of the Cham Kingdom, now a charming but lively UNESCO World Heritage Site, Hoi An’s food culture is legendary.

Bale Well restaurant will bamboozle you with banh xeo - a Hoi An speciality of crispy crepes stuffed with shrimp and bean sprouts – which are then stuffed with grilled pork satay (nem nuong) spring rolls(ram cuon) and more grilled pork (thit nuong), not to mention various splashes of sweet, hot and fishy sauce.

Bale Well
45/51 Tran Hung Dao St., Hoi An

The vibrant Central Market food hall has a multitude of stalls, and is a fine place to try Hoi An creations such as cao lau - a pork noodle dish with greens - and banh bao banh vac or ‘white rose’ shrimp dumplings.

Central Market
Nguyen Hue and Tran Phu Streets, Hoi An

Before getting back on the train, domn’t miss an opportunity to stock up on Vietnamese baguettes or banh mi at another Anthony Bourdain haunt, Banh Mi Puong.

Banh Mi Phuong
2B Phan Chau Trinh, Hoi An

While less spectacular than the previous leg, the 17-hour journey from Da Nang to Ho Chi Minh City will keep you fed at least. A trolley does the rounds with steaming hot rice with grilled meats and sausages, plus much-needed coffee. Your final destination, Ho Chi Minh City, or Saigon as most locals still call it, is bustling and booming. Neon-lit skyscrapers give Saigon a Blade Runner vibe, but the food is grounded in tradition, and frequently delicious.

Vinh Khanh is a specialist seafood street full of carts and restaurants, and Oc Oanh is its highlight with its succulent grilled octopus and chilli crab.

Oc Oanh
534 Vinh Khanh, Ward 8, District 4, Ho Chi Minh City

Explore more street food with a motorbike tour, then learn how to cook the dishes yourself with Saigon Cooking Class. Alternatively, go upmarket at Quan An Ngon restaurant, and try southern Vietnamese specialities, such as mud snails in coconut milk (oc len xao due) in an ornately rennovated mansion.

Quan An Ngon
138 Nam Ky Khoi Nghia, Ho Chi Minh City

If by this stage, you need a break from all that great Vietnamese food, head for Quan Ut Ut(Restaurant Oink Oink) for an American BBQ feast of cashew-smoked pork ribs or a John Holmes Footlong Hotdog, washed down with a craft beer from Saigon’s own Pasteur Street Brewing Co (which also has three taprooms in the city).

Quan Ut Ut
168 Vo Van Kiet, Phuong Cau Ong Lanh, Ho Chi Minh City

What's on in March: 8 Top Food Events Around the World


With signs of spring starting to appear, food events are also gathering in number and pace, with a number of world cass events shooting up around the world this month.

From the exciting announcement of Asia's 50 Best Restaurants (live streamed from Macau) on 27 March to a dozen Women in Gastronomy championing all that's good about food in Bangkok and state of the art stadium style show cooking in LA - March is the month to watch out for.

Find out what's on here.

Food Events in March 2018

Over 100 events are on offer at this at South Carolina's all encompassing food festival in partnership with Acqua Panna and S.Pellegrino. Chef demonstrations, signature dinners, and extensive, hands-on classes form just some of the five days of the highly anticipated 13th edition of this culinary hoe down.

Find out more here.
3 TO 5 MARCH, 2018

The Human Factor is the theme of this year's Identità Golose 2018 in Milan from Saturday the 3rd of March to Monday the 5th and sponsored by Acqua Panna and S.Pellegrino. The three packed days also boast a host of masterclasses on Italian favourites, like cheese, gelato, pasta and pizza plus wider discussions around the art of hospitality with an impressive line-up of culinary greats from Italy and around the world.

Find out the programme here.
8 TO 10 MARCH, 2018

The city’s favourite Food, Drink and Music festival returns with 3 days of food driven fun from 8 to 10 March 2018, sponsored by Acqua Panna and S.Pellegrino. It's a great chance to try the city's hottest restaurants in one location to the backdrop of live music.

Find out more here.
7 TO 11 MARCH, 2018

Amanda Cohen, Ludo Lefebvre, Wylie Dufresne are just a few of the incredible chefs in the 40 strong line-up at this year's All-Star chef Classic set inside the impressive high tech auditorium in LA from 7 to 10 March.

Find out more here.

A selection of world-class female chefs will gather for the first ever global conference and food tasting forum at the S.Pellegrino and Acqua Panna sponsored Women in Gastronomy (WIG). Taking place at The Sukhothai Hotel Bangkok on 8 March 2018 there'll be dynamic chef talks, presentations, cooking demos and interactive panel discussions about the evolving role of women in the field of global gastronomy plus a 12 course lunch.

TICKETS To be part of this exciting day and reserve a spot, log onto www.WomenInGastronomy.Asia, call 02 286 7821 or email:

Find out more here.
16 TO 25 MARCH, 2018

This 10 day down under festival in partnership with Acqua Panna and S.Pellegrino takes place from 16 to 25 March and boasts over 200 events, including food and wine tastings, culinary demonstrations and shindigs all supported by a hot line-up of culinary talent. Don't miss the world's longest lunch.

Find out what's on here.
21 MARCH, 2018

Fans of French gastronomy get the chance to celebrate globally on 21 March with the return of Goût de France/Good France festival. In more than 150 countries across 5 continents French gastronomes can enjoy one day of feasting on France's finest food in a total of 3000 participating restaurants. From haute cuisine to quality bistro food, over 2000 chefs will be cooking up a French-inspired menu "à la française" for the occasion.

Find out more here.
27 MARCH, 2018

The full list of Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants, will be revealed on 27 March at the Wynn Palace Cotai in Macao and live-streamed on Fine Dining Lovers. Will Gaggan be named The Best Restaurant in Asia for a record-breaking three consecutive years? Tune in to find out.

See the Tasting Menu at Possibly Japan’s Best Sushi Restaurant



There are many sushi restaurants in Japan that could lay claim to the title of the country’s best – Sukiyabashi Jiro or Sushi Saito, both in Tokyo, spring to mind – but head south to Kokura and you’ll find another contender, one where less is most definitely not more.

At the coastal town's Tenzushi restaurant, chef Isao Amano is offering diners a wholly different sushi experience from the Edomae-style (raw fish and vingered rice). There Amano serves a kyushu-style of sushi, which uses rice wine instead of vinegar, adding layers of flavour with additional toppings and even grilling and roasting certain ingredients.

As you can see from the video below from Simon and Martina, this means each bite is filled with an array of flavours, a world away from the clean simplicity of Edomae. Amano also starts each omakase (meaning 'chef's choice') meal with toro, or fatty tuna, which is usually reserved for the final dish.

Monday, February 26, 2018

Deviled Eggs: 8 Ways To Get Creative With Deviled Eggs



We've officially entered deviled egg season. What could be better than offering a few twists on this classic Easter dish?

Basic deviled eggs are delicious but incorporating a few extra ingredients like bacon, crab, herbsor even avocado will make your Easter deviled eggs extra special.

Ready to give these Easter deviled eggs ideas a try? Here is what to cook:

Deep fried deviled eggs are easy to make and completely irresistible. The crispiness of the egg whites is the perfect contrast to the creamy filling. A must-try recipe!


These deviled eggs are pretty in pink thanks to being pickled in a beet broth. It's a simple way to add a punch of color and flavor to classic deviled eggs.


Assorted deviled eggs are a great idea when feeding a crowd. That way you give everyone a few choices they can sample.

Avocado, cream cheese and capers are all great additions to the deviled egg filling.

You can try these three recipes for assorted deviled eggs.

Adding crab to deviled eggs offers a luxurious touch that seafood lovers will appreciate.

These deviled eggs are blended with crab but also garnished with the crustacean...that's a crabdouble whammy!

See how it's done:



If, like us, you believe bacon makes everything better than you'll love these bacon-infused deviled eggs. Bacon, bacon, bacon! Enough said...check out the recipe:


Another way to incorporate bacon into deviled eggs is to make BLT deviled eggs.
Interested? Here's how to make them:

Alex Atala: 'Feeding the World is a Paradox'


The Brazilian superstar chef wants to plant 10 seeds: 10 big ideas that will help feed an ever more densely populated planet.
Alex Atala: 'Feeding the World is a Paradox'

If you’re a chef and you want to save the world, you better make sure your house is in order first. And Alex Atala wants to save the world – more precisely, he wants to feed it.

“How to feed the world is a paradox, nobody has the answer,” says the Brazilian, whose two-Michelin-star D.O.M. restaurant in São Paulo currently sits at number 16 on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list. We meet at the IKRA gastronomic festival just outside Sochi, Russia, where Atala will demonstrate the cooking of the kind of Amazonian ingredients – palm heart, manioc (aka cassava or yucca), river fish – that have seen him lauded as the reviver of national pride in the Brazilian larder.

“As chefs, I believe our first commitment is to delicious food. Once you have a good restaurant, a good team, you want to push your team, your food, to the next level," he says. "But eating and cooking is not only about food: it’s political, it’s social, it’s economical… for me I guess it’s environmental. I don’t think all chefs need to be activists, but if they want, if they can, it should be according to their values and the place they are, their own reality. For example, Massimo Bottura with the Refettorio [the Italian chef’s Food for Soul project, which sees top chefs cooking gourmet meals for the needy using food waste]. He’s really focused on the social.”

Anybody who’s watched Atala’s captivating episode of the Netflix hit Chef’s Table will know his passion for Brazilian ingredients, particularly those of the Amazon. They’ll also be familiar with his backstory: drug-fuelled party boy heads to Europe and falls into cooking by chance as a way to extend his visa, before hearing the calling of Brazil and heading home to essentially put Brazilian gastronomy on the map. And it was through cooking that Atala really got to understand the breath of biodiversity in his homeland and how food can be an “important tool for natural conservation.”

Now, he wants to tackle another, if not the crisis of our times: how to feed a planet that will be home to an estimated 9.7 billion people by 2050. In January, Atala’s ATA institute staged, in collaboration with the cultural promoter Felipe Ribenboim, the first ever FRU.TO food symposium in São Paulo. There wasn’t a cooking demonstration in sight – instead the event drew together scientists, academics, producers and writers, with Atala making only a brief appearance on stage to open the event. It was, he says, “not about cooking, but much more about humanities” with speakers, including the likes of Slow Food founder Carlo Petrini and syntropic farming pioneer Ernest Götch, who are “not talking about plans” but actually doing things. These are people, Atala feels, who can be “inspirational models” for us all, who can show us how to change our lives in practical terms.

“I’ve known Carlo Petrini for a long time and seen him speaking probably 10 times in my life,” says Atala, “but his message was so surprising. He talked about new systems and possibilities to work together – alliances between organisations, chefs and cultures. He talks about food in a holistic way, how food can change us, our environment, our behaviour, our relationships.”

At the heart of FRU.TO are 10 ‘seeds’ – 10 big ideas that hold the key to tackling hunger going forward (see below) Atala feels, from safeguarding the knowledge of indigenous populations, something ATA already promotes, to resetting how we farm our oceans. Atala wants to see them spread and gain momentum, feeding back in to the next Fruto. “We are trying to push boundaries and help people to understand food in the bigger picture, from a different perspective. What connects seven billion people? Easy, it’s food ... I’m optimistic about the future.”


1. Humankind is at a dietary crossroads

2. The current production system is killing the planet

3. The challenges are unprecedented and multiple

4. Climate change increases the drama

5. The solutions are also multiple

6. The food producer is an ally, not the villain

7. Traditional populations will be increasingly important

8. The oceans are the next frontier

9. It is necessary to strengthen the local feeding system

10. Reconnect the urban population with the fields and forests

Sunday, February 25, 2018

The Week in Bites 25 February 2018


This week at FDL we brought you an exclusive interview with Swedish chef Björn Frantzén, tips on distinguishing wild and farmed tuna, and much more.

The Week in Bites <br> 25 February 2018


This week at Fine Dining Lovers we kicked things off with an article on how to distinguish farmed and wild tuna.

Chef Tomoo Kimura of Sushi Kimura restaurant in Singapore explained they are several factors to take into account including: weight, flavor and seasonality.

Discover all of the chef's tips


Also this week we stopped by Sweden to chat with chef Björn Frantzén.

The chef was positively glowing after news that his restaurant Frantzén was announced this week as Sweden’s first ever three Michelin star restaurant.

Chef Frantzén talked to FDL about how he is redefining luxury and his plans for the future.

Read all about it here.


Other top stories this week included an in-depth look at balsamic vinegar and five things to look for in high-quality cognac.

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Richard Ekkebus' Inspirational Dishes


Have a look at some delicious dishes prepared by chef Richard Ekkebus of Amber, the signature restaurant of The Landmark Mandarin Oriental hotel, Hong Kong.
Richard Ekkebus' Inspirational Dishes

Largely recognised as one of the finest, if not the finest French restaurant in Asia, Hong Kong’s Amber at the Mandarin Oriental is a must visit spot for any fine dining lover in the city. Consistently in the top five of Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants and currently number 24 on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list, it has held two Michelin stars for nine consecutive years.

Picture above: Miyazaki wagyu beef, strip loin, barbecued with dulse & red cabbage slaw, oxalis, horseradish & pepper berry emulsion © Amber at The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong

At the helm is Dutch-born Executive Chef Richard Ekkebus, who arrived in Hong Kong in 2005 via the kitchens of esteemed French chefs, such as Pierre Gagnaire, Alain Passard and Guy Savoy. But Ekkebus has managed, with the classics as his base, to infuse his acclaimed, multi-course cuisine with Cantonese touches, such as the use of seaweed instead of salt in Amber’s signature dish of Hokkaido sea urchin in lobster Jell-O with caviar and cauliflower cream, which has been on the menu for over eight years (in the picture at the top of the article). “If you Google my name, probably the first picture you'll see is a sea urchin,” jokes Ekkebus. See the recipe here.

Picture above: Dombes Frog Legs © Amber at The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong

During Amber’s pre-launch phase, ‘Western-style dim sum’ was muted as a style reveals Ekkebus, but he didn’t see it through, fearing the reaction. “The best French food in Hong Kong then was very traditional – we had to find a point of difference. We didn’t do the dim sum, but we did include elements of Cantonese influence – and some people hated it – we had blue fin tuna with a sesame seed emulsion with crispy chicken feet. People wondered what on earth we were serving. So we had to adapt, and tone things down. 12 years later, Maaemo in Oslo is serving crispy goose feet with cherry and oxalis and the dining public is ready to accept it.”

Picture above: Cleanser, Canapes & Mise en Bouches © Amber at The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong

Another classic Amber dish is the Foie gras Chupa Chups, which used to be served as an amuse bouche. Now, a meal at Amber starts with a selection of lighter bites, with an emphasis on the vegetal. “Many of the mains [feature] protein, so we wanted to take away the protein from the start of the meal. We get very excited to work with new ingredients each season.” Each amuse bouche represents a different, clearly defined taste profile: salt, sour, bitter, sweet, and umami.

Picture above: Foie Gras Chupa Chup with Beetroot & Raspberry © Amber at The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong

Ekkebus likes to add a hint of acidity to this dishes by using citrus, spice or vinegar, as in a more recent dish of Abalone with vinegar and black pepper-seasoned tomatoes, crispy oxtail and oxtail jus, a dish which the chef says “is on the verge of becoming iconic.”

Picture above: Korean abalone, black pepper & vinegar seasoned tomato compote, braised then crisped oxtail & its jus © Amber at The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong

Technology also plays a role: “We're not a molecular restaurant but [technology] has a tremendous affect on how we cook. We’ve found cleverer ways of doing things and traditions are being broken all the time. We have been rooted in traditions of French cuisine, but [at the same time,] we have been very receptive and sensitive of new ideas. It’s important not to bury our heads in rules that were set in French kitchens”.

Picture above: Heirloom carrots, confit with & orange blossom honey, carrot cake, segments, zest & sorbet of blood orange © Amber at The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong

Picture above: Kacinkoa 85% chocolata, ganache, fisherman’s friend dust, peppermint & white chocolate sorbet © Amber at The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong

Picture above: Shimaebi prawn tail raw, marinated with citrus & beetroot, crispy fried head with calamansi emulsion © Amber at The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong

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