5 Confessions of someone who REALLY loves food – is it just me?

Everyone likes food and everyone loves certain foods but some of us just get more excited about food than others…am I right? I just love food, whether I’m snacking on ingredients as I cook or filling up on bread in a restaurant before my meal comes – food just makes me happy. If you’re one of those people (some might use the word greedy!) you’ll relate to the situations and statements on this list…

1) You always forget to photograph your food

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When something really delicious arrives in front of me at a restaurant my first instinctive reaction is to put a little bit of it in my mouth rather than snap a photo. I usually remember just as it’s too late and I’ve taken my first bite, that’s why some of the photos on my blog usually feature a dish with a little bit missing! Not good for a food blogger. Does anyone else just dive straight in?

2) A restaurant menu is REALLY exciting

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The possibilities, the choices – all those dishes that talented chefs are just waiting to make you! Browsing a restaurant menu makes me very happy indeed. The excitement when you spot your favourite dish or ingredient, the umming and erring between two seemingly perfect choices – is there anything better than choosing food at a restaurant?

3) You have to eat some of your food shopping right away

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I tend to get mine delivered and have usually been looking forward to what I’ve ordered. So when the weekly food shop arrives I just have to snack on some of it as I’m putting it all away. And if I’ve been to a supermarket then I’ll usually have to have a nibble of something in the car. Anyone else?

4) Eating whilst cooking

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Whatever the dish, you have to test out the ingredients as you go…or at least I certainly do! Even if it’s just raw veg as I prep a salad or stir fry. Of course it’s much worse if I’m cooking anything with cheese!

5) Things can get out of control at farmers markets and farm shops 

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I have to limit myself because I always end up spending a fortune at the farmers market or farm shop. Local cheese, pies, bread, chutneys, cake…I need it all in my life and buying it feels so good. Getting home and eating it all feels even better!

Am I alone in my food excitement? Let me know if you can identify with any of these food loving statements too!

xXx

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Another Top Hidden Gem…The Plough, Sparsholt

Well The Plough at Sparsholt is hidden in the literal sense of the word, in that it’s a bit off the beaten track out of Winchester, but thanks to its consistently good fare everyone seems to know about it. It’s one of those places that always delivers excellent, hearty food. It’s a real gem of a country pub, serving Wadworth ales and lots classic tasty dishes. There’s a cracking selection of more adventurous dishes too, such as the fabulous pan fried fillet of hake with king prawns and creamy leeks that I enjoyed last night (…the start of a diet breaking evening!).

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The Plough on sunny day

What I really love about The Plough is the dessert menu…I’m actually not much of a sweet-toothed person but this place has all my favourites on one chalk board. There’s gorgeous New Forest ice creams – perfect for when you can’t manage a proper pudding! And I love their selection of classic desserts like bread & butter pudding, creme brulé, sticky toffee pudding…and this…

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Treacle Tart with Clotted Cream

 

The Plough’s treacle tart with clotted cream is to die for! It’s simply gooey, gluttonous heaven on a plate…so good!

Have I tempted you to take a taxi out to Sparsholt yet? …do it! The Plough always delivers!

Great night…diet totally ruined…back on track on Monday xXx

Try Sakura – Winchester’s First Teppanyaki Restaurant

Winchester folks have you noticed that Cellar Peking has gone? Remember the Chinese restaurant on Jewry Street down all those steps? Well it’s no more and in it’s place is Sakura, a Japanese restaurant serving teppanyaki. I was lucky enough to try it out last weekend and it was excellent.

Firstly the whole place has been completely refurbished, with a contemporary Asian themed interior and of course a central teppanyaki griddle. If you have not experienced teppanyaki before, it essentially involves watching an amazingly skilful chef cook your food in front of you on a flat top grill, while you sit around the grill and enjoy the whole theatrical foodie experience. Meats, vegetables and rice are all prepared on the grill top and it’s great fun, as well as very tasty.

On the menu, there’s also sushi, sashimi, salads and soups as well as set menus incorporating a little of everything. I was impressed to see Sake and cocktails on the drinks menu too.

Sake!

A mojito had to be sampled of course

The sushi menu

On to the food! We started off with some mixed sushi which was delicious and beautifully presented. We followed this with teppanyaki steak, king prawns and scallops to share – we finished the lot!  The ingredients were fresh and cooked to perfection.

Teppanyaki steak and vegetables

The staff were excellent too, helpful and ready to explain anything we didn’t understand on the menu. The restaurant itself was very quiet, although it was a Sunday and I think as more people find out about what a hidden gem the place is the atmosphere will certainly pick up. All in all I’m very much looking forward to going back and sampling more of the menu!

Dinner of teppanyaki steak, prawns and scallops being devoured!

If you haven’t been I recommend you try it out, the number is 01962 864178 (there’s no website set up for the place as yet, so contact details are a little hard to come by).