Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Barcelona - Bar Oviso for breakfast

I love "search nearby" options on phone applications that provide reviews like Yelp and Tripadvisor. We needed somewhere to grab a coffee and a bite to eat, and we had been walking around looking at places near our hotel, but we had no idea what was good or bad. So I looked a couple of places up and Bar Oviso seemed popular with the locals as well as tourists, and was right behind our hotel (visible from our room) so we popped in.

Glad we did, we ended up going twice! The coffee was potent and small, just how I like them. Strong flavour and wake you up immediately.

Monday, 30 March 2015

Meatless Monday - Artichoke Spinach Potato Pine nut and Buffala Tart

I have recently started eating artichokes. This is a big thing for me as I always more or less avoided them or ate around them if they showed up on my veggie pizzas. But I have decided to try and get into what is produced locally, and eating as much as possible seasonally, and little cute artichokes have been showing up in bunches all around Nice and I couldn't help myself, I had to buy them.

We then needed to figure out what actually to do with them, what does one cook with artichokes at home? They always seem like more of a restaurant veg to me. But G pulled out our trusty Silver Spoon, the Italian cooking bible, and found a recipe that had the artichokes in a tart, and we fortunately had a tart pastry base that we had to use. So he went from that basic idea, checked what we had that needed eating (spinach and buffalo mozzarella) and put together this Meatless Monday contribution of artichoke, spinach, potato, pine nut and buffalo mozzarella tart and it was lovely.

It is also a nice break from my usual pasta dishes that end up being my Meatless Monday posts! Vegetarians do eat more than pasta, even though it is a very useful quick dinner :)

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Barcelona - Bar Celta Pulperia for Galician Tapas

Bar Celta has been our go-to place for tapas ever since we wandered into it in the Gothic quarter of Barcelona years ago on our first trip to this town that we love. It has since moved about 10 minutes away from where it was, but the food and the ambiance are still the same and we love it - we made it our first stop this trip to Barcelona, we dumped our bags at the hotel and walked over! We  somehow didn't get around to G having their namesake octopus (pulpo) but we enjoyed what we did order - check out my usual collage below!

And of course read on for more info...

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Our weekend in Barcelona - food and shopping!

We went away for the weekend as we needed a break from the routine, moving back isn't as easy as it should be, especially for someone like me who thrives on new new new. So to cheer me up, my darling booked us a weekend in Barcelona which is one of our favourite cities in Europe, and I know many agree with us :)

We booked ourselves a hotel in Barri Gotic, the old city centre of Barcelona, after a few failed attempts to book somewhere via Air BnB. We realised once we were there that there was a race on which went a long way towards explaining why all the cheaper options were booked up. We ended up at a lovely hotel to be fair, the Aparthotel Arai - pretty and central with nice staff. 

We have done most of the touristy things to do in Barcelona in previous trips, so we just focused on food and shopping and we were very happy :) We "discovered" the joys of Massimo Dutti (dangerous, we both came out with new jackets and jumpers) and performed our usual pilgrimage to Pull and Bear. We also got confused by El Corte Ingles as we by mistake went into the sports only one, we couldn't find any non-exercisey clothes and were a bit bemused :)

Here is an overview of the best things I ate this trip to Barcelona, read on for more info on what we did and where we found the best of everything :D

Monday, 23 March 2015

Meatless Monday - Roasted peppers and Roasted tomatoes pasta

G was away and I was feeling a little uninspired in the kitchen, but at the same time had a hugely full fridge full of things I needed to cook to stop them going off. I may have impulse control issues when it comes to buying food!

When I get uninspired I tend to go for easy options, things I know. This was a bit of that and a bit of "meal prep"  to avoid spoiling the vegetable collection in my fridge, and to make way for more veggies I had just picked up from the market!

So I turned on the oven and sliced a whole loads of veggies up, with glugs of olive oil and garlic cloves, and put them in the oven. I will explain more about that in another post but wanted to share a bit more info about the pasta I was then able to throw together super fast on a work night.

I present to you, roasted pepper and roasted tomato penne pasta:

Read on for the step by step process for delicious pasta.

Saturday, 21 March 2015

Nice - Tribeca Burger - very nice and veggie option!

We were looking for a lunch option and just couldn't agree as I didn't fancy pasta (G wanted to go to Le Local but I had pasta the night before) and he didn't fancy anything I suggested. So we went quiet for a bit, both stewing slightly, until G happened across the idea of heading to the new-ish burger place around the corner from us, on Place du Pin, called Tribeca Burger. I had read that they had veggie options and a chicken option, and that their chips (fries) were amazing so off we wandered.

Yum! Read on if you want more info than just 'yum'

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Nice - Al Taglio for pizza slices on Rue Droite in Vieux Nice (Nice Old Town)

I had wandered past Al Taglio a few times so was very curious about this new pizza slice place on Rue Droite in the Vieux Nice. I had even peeked in to check out their gourmet slices from closer up and been assured by a random patron that they were very good. They open from I believe 1130 to 1900/1930 every day except Tuesday so are only an option for me on the weekend or if I get back earliesh during the week and don't have plans to go to Les Amoureux ;).

This time I was meeting hubby and friend at Distilleries Ideales for a drink and I know they don't have anything I like to eat so I popped around the corner to Al Taglio for a quick snack. I snapped up the last slice of the cherry tomato pizza (pictures of that further down) and whilst it was being reheated I took a few shots of the shop and pizzas on offer. 

Here below you can see the tomato, mushrooms and ham pizza slices, the four cheese pizza and the corner of a buffalo margarita pizza.

Monday, 16 March 2015

Meatless Monday - Spiced Butternut Squash Soup

A great thing about winter is that squash is in season, and who doesn't love some pumpkin or butternut squash? They are so versatile from soups, to roasted, to pies, to pasta to salads. And many many more. We decided to go for a meatless option when we had a butternut squash in the "Panier du Producteur" delivery and we made a lovely spiced butternut squash soup.

My lovely bowl of butternut squash soup and yummy bread
And the hubby's bowl of soup
So how easy is it to make Spiced Butternut Squash Soup? Very easy if you follow the following steps below.

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