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Spicy Prawn Rougaille http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/10/09/spicy-prawn-rougaille/ http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/10/09/spicy-prawn-rougaille/#comments Thu, 09 Oct 2014 10:37:29 +0000 http://www.tastemauritius.com/?p=5885 Spicy Prawn Rouagille Recipe This is a perfect spicy and warming dish (perfect for this rainy October weather) its a quick Mauritian dish which can be made in 15-20 minutes perfect for that dinner for two, best served with basmati rice or rotis! Prawn Rougaille   Recipe for  2  persons 15-20 minutes to make   [...]

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Spicy Prawn Rouagille Recipe

This is a perfect spicy and warming dish (perfect for this rainy October weather) its a quick Mauritian dish which can be made in 15-20 minutes perfect for that dinner for two, best served with basmati rice or rotis!

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Prawn Rougaille

 

Recipe for  2  persons

15-20 minutes to make

 

Ingredients:

 

220g King Prawns/Raw (deveined & de-shelled)

2 Tbsp Olive Oil

1 Small Onion, chopped finely

1 garlic clove, chopped finely

1 small 1inch sized piece ginger, chopped finely

2 Green Chillies, chopped finely with seeds

200g Chopped tomatoes (canned)

1 small fresh Tomato, chopped

1 Spring Onion, green part chopped finely

Small bunch fresh Coriander, coriander stalks chopped and leaves kept separately for decoration

1 tbsp fresh thyme (leaves only)

1 tsp salt

Pinch of sugar

 

Method:

 

1) Firstly add into pan on medium heat, then add onion, garlic & ginger let it sweat for 2 minutes, add thyme leaves, chilli, tomato let it cook for 1 minute

2) Add all chopped tomatoes to the pan, coriander stalks, salt, pinch of sugar and 100ml water leave to cook for 10 minutes, stirring at intervals.

3) Keep checking the rougaille sauce add a little water if it dries out,  then add your prawns into the sauce, cook gently for 2/3 minutes or till cooked and pink.

4)Turn the heat off, add spring onion and fresh coriander to finish off dish, taste for seasoning, add more salt and chilli if required.

5) Best eaten with fragrant basmati rice or fresh rotis!

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Caramelised Figs with Mauritian Vanilla http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/10/01/caramelised-figs-mauritian-vanilla/ http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/10/01/caramelised-figs-mauritian-vanilla/#comments Wed, 01 Oct 2014 11:55:27 +0000 http://www.tastemauritius.com/?p=5877 Happy 1st of October! Where is the time flying by? We will be saying the C word in 12 weeks time.. This Autumnal recipe exudes warming hints of cinnamon and vanilla accentuating the soft flavours of these ripe figs, matched with creamy Greek yoghurt this is a healthy yet indulgent breakfast or snack recipe. Its [...]

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Happy 1st of October! Where is the time flying by? We will be saying the C word in 12 weeks time..

This Autumnal recipe exudes warming hints of cinnamon and vanilla accentuating the soft flavours of these ripe figs, matched with creamy Greek yoghurt this is a healthy yet indulgent breakfast or snack recipe. Its fast becoming my favourite!

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The ingredients are using products from Natoora who I am happy to announce I will be collaborating with them on future upcoming events and I will be doing demos at their Chiswick shop!!

Caramelised Vanilla Figs with Greek Yoghurt & Pistachios

Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 5 minutes
Serves: 2-3 people

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220g Greek Yoghurt
Vanilla pod (Madagascan or Bourbon)
2 tbsp Honey
Figs, quartered
Garnish (2 tbsp crushed pistachios, generous pinch of ground cinnamon)

In a shallow non stick pan, place on the hob on a medium heat, add in the quartered figs and drizzle with the honey. As soon as the honey starts to melt, add in the split vanilla pod. Let he figs simmer in the honey and vanilla for around 5 minutes, till you see the figs just start to break up.

Turn off the heat and sprinkle over a little cinnamon powder, set aside. To serve use small bowls, add in the greek yoghurt, top with the warm fig compote and add some crushed pistachios.

Hope you try!

Selina x

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Monkfish Curry http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/08/29/monkfish-curry/ http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/08/29/monkfish-curry/#comments Fri, 29 Aug 2014 09:33:55 +0000 http://www.tastemauritius.com/?p=5853 Did someone say Monkfish curry? Great British Chefs have a fabulous summer section of recipes to try and it took me a while to choose which one to make I frittered between dessert to curry back to dessert to snacks and the more adventurous recipes, whilst settling on the monkfish. Seriously its unbelievable how long [...]

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Did someone say Monkfish curry?

Great British Chefs have a fabulous summer section of recipes to try and it took me a while to choose which one to make I frittered between dessert to curry back to dessert to snacks and the more adventurous recipes, whilst settling on the monkfish. Seriously its unbelievable how long it takes to decide make something or eat it in my household (after the obligatory food styling, photo snapping and instagramming)..

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Iv’e had my eye on this delectable recipe by Michelin starred chef Alfred Prasad for a while now, having not cooked with monkfish previously I am dying to delve into eating this homely, colourful looking curry. Since I say Michelin, it does not reflect in this recipe and think that’s what’s attracted me it, simple, easy, home cooking is right up my street!

Me and the hubby are partial to a good curry every now and then and if its not a Mauritian one, its an Indian or Asian-inspired one, I just love lapping up those tasty spiced sauces with fluffy basmati rice or fresh rotis or chappatis. Guaranteed clean plates!

I swung by fishmongers Moxons in Clapham South yesterday to pick up some fresh monkfish for the dish.

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So I’m whipping up Alfred’s temptingly rich orange hued monkfish curry.

To start you saute the mustard seeds in some oil (here I used coconut oil) because I’ve started to use it alot these days and I love the extra smooth coconut flavour to the curry it gives. Then tipping in sliced onions (onions are very important in the base of any curry sauce making) here with a touch of maple syrup (as I didn’t have any fenugreek) and apparently an interesting fact is maple syrup is a good substitute for fenugreek as it contains the same compound sotolone that tastes similar!  

 

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Then add in the rich yellow turmeric, which you don’t need alot of as it can be overpowering, with that then the tomatoes that are blended, hot water, chilli (of course!) and cumin/coriander spices. This all happily sits cooking away for 20 minutes to develop a rich aromatic sauce. Believe me I can smell it wafting out the kitchen and its only making me utterly famished.

After 20 minutes of cooking, the sauce has reduced down, now is the time to carefully add in the monkfish pieces, at this point I literally time it for 2 minutes cooking in the sauce, then turn off the heat, mixed through some coconut milk and left it aside. It smells divine!

All that is needed now for the curry is to finish off with some fresh coriander (that will be on my portion because the other half abhors coriander!)

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Here is the recipe from the Great British Chefs Site

 

1. Wash the monkfish cubes and leave to drain
2.In a blender, pulse the tomatoes into a purée and set aside
3.In a thick bottomed pan over a medium heat, heat enough oil to coat the bottom of the pan, then throw in the mustard seeds
4.Once the seeds are crackling, add the fenugreek seeds followed by the curry leaves, ginger and sliced onions. Cook until the onions are golden, stirring occasionally
5.Add the turmeric powder, sauté and add the puréed fresh tomatoes and hot water into the pan. Add the chilli, cumin and coriander powders
6.Partially cover the pan and turn up the heat so that it starts to boil, leave for 20 minutes
7.Turn down the heat, add the cubes of fish and allow to simmer for about 2 minutes. Stir the curry gently as it cooks, as the monkfish will cook quickly
8.Add the coconut milk and salt to taste, and bring the curry back to the boil. Stir gently until combined and the fish is cooked, then remove from the heat. Sprinkle with chopped coriander, add salt to taste and serve immediately
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I accompanied this dish with brown rice mixed with fried white onions in a little ghee and oil spiked with cardamom, cloves, cinnamon and black peppercorns.  Plus a sweet carrot, cumin and sesame salad.

This in fact has probably made monkfish one of my current favourites, the fish cooked for 2 minutes retained its shape, was delicate to eat with the fragrant rich tomato based sauce, I only wish there was more! Will definitely be making this again.

id-week supper or if you have friends over!

Selina x

 

 

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Mauritian Open Air Festival 2014 http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/08/05/mauritian-festival-2014/ http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/08/05/mauritian-festival-2014/#comments Tue, 05 Aug 2014 14:02:53 +0000 http://www.tastemauritius.com/?p=5809 This weekend I visited the annual Mauritian Open Air Festival based in Tottenham on Down Park Lane. There was only a little wait for 40 minutes to get in.. but next time I’ve learnt to turn up later, we are running to Mauritian time after all With the promise of sega music, stalls serving up [...]

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This weekend I visited the annual Mauritian Open Air Festival based in Tottenham on Down Park Lane. There was only a little wait for 40 minutes to get in.. but next time I’ve learnt to turn up later, we are running to Mauritian time after all :)

With the promise of sega music, stalls serving up dhall puri, briyani and was a must visit for lunch (even if it was just to pick up some food) I went to last years one review here, with similar vendors as before and families setting up stalls serving homemade Mauritian food.

We met some characters, including a man who lived at a naval base in Mauritius in the 70′s, but now attends the Mauritian Festival every year. It’s quite refreshing to see many Europeans and mixed crowds at the festival, not just Mauritians to see that the interest outside of the community is growing.

There were some charity stalls there including Second Sight and Save our Monkeys who are championing their causes to support their charities directly linked to Mauritius.

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Street style gajacks (aubergine fritters, gateaux piment, du pain frier, bhajia)

There was one stall I passed by from a catering company that were serving freshly made dhall puris, you could see the process line of the woman rolling and filling the dough with split peas. And one was constantly cooking them on a large tawa (flat pan),she mentioned how you have to add a lot of oil to help it cook, to the hesitation of me going “that’s too much oil!” I still ate it anyway..

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Dhall Puri in all its glory.. with butterbean curry, chilli sauce and achar.. this chilli nearly blew my head off!

The dhall puri was slightly too hot for me, I know so shameful, but sometimes in dhall puri you buy on the street they just have chutney and the curry sauce  which is just as nice as with the hotter version with chilli sauce.

At £1 each for a pair that’s not too bad.

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Fruit pickled in sugar, vinegar, chilli with extra salt chilli to sprinkle on top 

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Fresh sugar cane juice, these were brought over from Uganda

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Alouda, vivid in pink colouring, a refreshing milky drink with basil seeds and agar jelly. This can be in various colours and is normally quite sweet, I make mine with ice cream for extra creaminess and texture.

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Gateaux piment (split pea chilli cakes) and gateaux arioulle (yam fritters)

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These fried morsels, are crisp, tasty and perfect scooped up with chilli chutney, proper Mauritian style. This rather stylish guy was frying gateaux piment in batch non stop, to keep up with the queues.

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Tarte Banane, caramelised banana cooked in a pastry shell, a cake/pastry in Mauritius best with a cup of tea! This was recommended to me by the stall vendor as the best tarte banane! Of course I had to text her theory out and it only lasted seconds.. the banana was spiced , dark in colour and cooked all mashed up, the pastry was baked through and had a delicious buttery taste to it.

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Pudine Mais, polenta cake with coconut, set in a jelly like texture, not too sweet

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With the main attraction being the food available, you do get dhall puri stalls competing with each other and every is offering the same traditional dishes, kept piping hot in large pots, there were a few jerk chicken stalls there as well.  We came across a few vindaye baguettes or chicken liver baguettes at £4 each filled to the brim with traditional fillings, a Mauritian sandwich if you like..

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It was lovely to briefly meet faces from Twitter, E.E Fry (@sugarcanebook) with her book Sugar Cane and La Boutique Maurice @BoutiqueMaurice .

Until the next Mauritian Open Air Festival, next year!

Selina x

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Electrolux Taste of London & City Pantry http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/06/30/taste-london-city-pantry/ http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/06/30/taste-london-city-pantry/#comments Mon, 30 Jun 2014 15:47:17 +0000 http://www.tastemauritius.com/?p=5744 So recently this month I’ve been out and about eating my way through London and these two events stood out. Not only were there lots of options to try different cuisines from restaurants (Taste) or street food stalls (City Pantry Westival) but such a buzz of people enjoying, socialising and reveling in food bringing people [...]

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So recently this month I’ve been out and about eating my way through London and these two events stood out. Not only were there lots of options to try different cuisines from restaurants (Taste) or street food stalls (City Pantry Westival) but such a buzz of people enjoying, socialising and reveling in food bringing people together.

Electrolux @Taste of London

So visiting TOL I went on a Thursday evening to try out some of the leading restaurants in London from Duck & Waffle, Assado, Flesh & Buns, Salt Yard to name a few.

We also got to go to Chef Secret’s hosted by Electrolux and saw Simon Hulstone make a sauteed liver dish with mixed mushrooms and mustard with cream, rich and delicious on chargrilled bread.

A simple dish made in under 15 minutes. That even we couldn’t mess up!

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Electrolux Secret Ingredient

We watched Jeremy Pang, Head chef of School of Wok, London’s top Oriental & Asian cookery school,  show how to cook a delicious Chinese banquet using his ‘secret ingredients’ and top of the range Electrolux appliances. Jeremy demonstrated how to get a real balance of flavour, when cooking Chinese food plus giving us little tips along the way ( I would recommend a class at School of Wok see my review on it here)

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We watched him whip up some of the flakiest tender fish (steamed in the oven) and duck pancakes coupled with wine to taste. Amazing.

Duck & Waffle.. Chef Dan’s recipe for a pistachio macaron, with chocolate mousse & cherries was divine and very easy to eat.

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Assado.. a fusion Portuguese/Indian restaurant had some wonderful vegetable puffs with coconut, I could of eaten plenty of these nibbles and made me more intrigued about going to the restaurant

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City Pantry – Westival 

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We visited a street food festival this month called Westival (it was located in Kensington) hosted by City Pantry a hub for caterers/street food vendors to offer delicious lunches to corporate companies around the city.

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We had some food from Colonel Tom’s dishing up gumbo with cornbread, Cooking Cooks with their pasta concoctions and Frenchie with their Duck Confit Burger. All complimented with finishing on Custom Creams Nitrogen ice cream.

Looking forward to hearing more events or collaborations with City Pantry in the future.

Selina x

 

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Reunion Island & Cilaos (Land of Lentils) http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/06/13/cilaos-land-lentils-reunion-island/ http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/06/13/cilaos-land-lentils-reunion-island/#comments Fri, 13 Jun 2014 14:49:45 +0000 http://www.tastemauritius.com/?p=5680 Mountains…lentils..more mountains.. 400 bended roads.. amazing scenery, interesting cuisine! “At first glance, Reunion is like a chunk of France transported to the tropics.” It is a tropical Island but unlike Seychelles or Mauritius it is not initially thought of as white sandy beach/luxury like these islands, it is more mountainous and almost feels like you’re in [...]

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Mountains…lentils..more mountains.. 400 bended roads.. amazing scenery, interesting cuisine!

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“At first glance, Reunion is like a chunk of France transported to the tropics.” It is a tropical Island but unlike Seychelles or Mauritius it is not initially thought of as white sandy beach/luxury like these islands, it is more mountainous and almost feels like you’re in France!

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The island produces sugarcane between July/December. There is Creole Brandy produced on the island, using fruit syrup, natural with no added sugar, with a variety of flours from lychee, mango,ginger, the small distillery we visited makes most their syrups before Dec (pre-cyclone season).

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Sea salt is also made on the island, where water is pumped into basins to evaporate, Reunion is known to have 200 different climates and over 100 different landscapes, one moment it can be blazing hot to a torrential downpour of rain.

And alike Mauritians the Réunionese love to eat, drink and to talk (it’s a creole thing)…

On arriving to Lux Reunion, it has a more outdoor, nature feel to the place, with the hotel entrance looking like a colonial mansion.

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We took a coach trip to spend the day visiting Cilaos a village in the mountains. “The name Cilaos comes from the Malagasy word, Tsilaosa which means the place one never leaves.” Wikipedia

Cilaos is a town on the French island of Reunion in the Indian Ocean only a half hour flight away (by Air Austral) from Mauritius. I was particularly interested in visiting the island as I have never been before and I wanted to discover more about the cuisine and how it differs to Mauritian cooking.

And here you get a feel of a community, this place is hidden in the depths of the mountain ranges that they really can be quite cut off from the rest of the Island. Growing their own produce (Cilaos is popular for the production of lentils) I couldn’t wait to try this!
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We were lucky enough to have our trusty tour guide Nicolas to talk us through the journey which included 400 bends in the road.. ouch!

We had a lunch prepared for us by a lovely couple Michel & Raymonda who specialise in Table d’Hote (supperclub style) their business is called La Tapacala  cooking, hosting and lodging for tourists who want to taste a true authentic experience of Reunion Island.

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Flanked by mountains and waterfalls in the outdoors we had picnic tables set up ready for our lunch, with Raymonda and Michel finishing up their outdoor cooking on hobs.

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The Rhum Charrette on the island is mixed with passionfruit, ginger, spices and geranium leaves to give them a spiced flavour. The traditional way is to let someone pour the drink in your mouth..so I saw!

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I was very excited about trying the lentil from Ciloas, cooked with smoked sausage and spices like saffran (turmeric) to give it a creamy texture, this is served with rice and we also had it alongside a marlin (fish) rougaille dish, none were too spicy. The dishes are similar to some Mauritian recipes, with slight twists and the food is more leaning to being French-inspired or Creole.

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We were also served a quiche but using chou chou, tomatoes and other vegetables it was delicious!

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Finally, we tried a chocolate cake with a combava (almost like lime leaf) taste to it, rich and dense, nothing like I have tried before.

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Definitely one of my highlights of the trip to Reunion Island, I will be expanding more on this in my next article for Air Mauritius’ Made in Mauritius blog soon!

LUX REUNION- La Plage Restaurant

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On having lunch at Lux Reunion we were treated to lunch at La Plage restaurant.  It celebrates the traditional Creole cuisine of the island. We started with a sparkling lychee cocktail (my favourite choice to drink) then on to a plate of gajacks or snacks (dim sum, samossa gateaux piment) served with achar (pickled vegetables) light and delicious.

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The main  was a plate of delicious fish including scallops, tender fish with a jus, potatoes and lemon wedges, celebrating the fresh local produce of the island.

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Fresh skewered and grilled prawns with peppers on a bed of seasoned vegetables & tomatoes prepped by the lovely French chef at the helm.

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Salmon Caesar Salad, a little twist to the normal Chicken Caesar, once since I have made at home.

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Thinly sliced pineapple carpaccio with ice cream

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La Cuisine- Lux Restaurant

In the evening we headed to La Cuisine another restaurant at Lux Reunion, we tasted some of the Scrucap wines, made exclusively for Lux resorts. (So glad I came home with a bottle of Riesling!)

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This meal was very enjoyable with a delicate starter of fish with pickled ginger, this was light and refreshing. These next two dishes are the highlight of most the meals at the hotel I experienced this fish was tender and buttery with a brede songe risotto base and parmesan crisp..OMG!

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Followed by the equally excellent root dessert, including cassava, a herb granita, turmeric and ginger spices plus root crisps. AMAZING! And a beautiful plate of food.

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Breakfast at Lux Reunion, included fruity exotic jams including a sweet potato flavour and fruit platers of fresh passionfruit, yoghurt and coconut.

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So a FABULOUS time in Reunion Island, so glad I got to experience it, especially the trip to Cilaos!

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Next time… Back to Mauritius in my final installment!

Selina x

 

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Win Taste of London tickets with Taste Mauritius! http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/06/02/win-taste-london-tickets-taste-mauritius/ http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/06/02/win-taste-london-tickets-taste-mauritius/#comments Mon, 02 Jun 2014 11:50:02 +0000 http://www.tastemauritius.com/?p=5667   Win a pair of Taste of London tickets, RRP £50   Taste of London is just round the corner, with restaurants from the city showcasing their creations in a bustling five day event set in Regent’s Park!   This year at Taste of London, ZWILLING J.A. HENCKELS will be offering practical advice and letting you in on [...]

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Win a pair of Taste of London tickets, RRP £50

Taste of London logo

 

Taste of London is just round the corner, with restaurants from the city showcasing their creations in a bustling five day event set in Regent’s Park!

NEW Zwilling PRO 18cm Chinese Knife £130

 

This year at Taste of London, ZWILLING J.A. HENCKELS will be offering practical advice and letting you in on everything you ever wanted to know about knives. Whether you are new to the kitchen or a keen chef at home a knife is the most important tool you will ever use. 

Check out the full Zwilling range at Zwilling. Or better still, head down to the Zwilling stand at Taste of London (stand E22) for demos and to pick up tips and tricks from Zwilling’s resident knife expert Paul Bough. Zwilling has also supplied the Electrolux Chef’s Secrets classes with professional equipment so for a hands on lesson be sure to head over to Chef’s Secrets before it books up!

Anyway they are giving away a pair of tickets to one lucky Taste Mauritius reader worth £50! The winner can chose to go on either a weekday of the event, which runs from 18th – 22nd June 2014.

For more information on what Taste of London has to offer visit: london.tastefestivals.com

Want to win???

To enter,
1. Complete the Rafflecopter form below.
2. You need to write the answer to the question on the form as a comment on my blog.
3. You gain extra bonus entries by ‘liking’ the Facebook page and ‘following’ on Twitter and tweeting about it too!
4. Closing date: Wednesday 11th June 2014.
5. You must be over 18 and live in the UK.

Not used Rafflecopter before? Here is a video clip follow on how to enter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Good luck!

Selina xx

 

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Mauritius: East meets Beach Rouge http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/06/01/mauritius-east-meets/ http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/06/01/mauritius-east-meets/#comments Sun, 01 Jun 2014 20:14:50 +0000 http://www.tastemauritius.com/?p=5584 The second installment of my blog about the amazing trip to Mauritius I begin with a morning breakfast on the beach at Lux Belle Mare.. Oh yes seriously close your eyes think flip flops off, bare feet in white sand, warm water, with sunshine beating down on you. Laid out on our breakfast table we [...]

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The second installment of my blog about the amazing trip to Mauritius I begin with a morning breakfast on the beach at Lux Belle Mare..

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Oh yes seriously close your eyes think flip flops off, bare feet in white sand, warm water, with sunshine beating down on you. Laid out on our breakfast table we got to enjoy fresh coconuts, champagne, exotic fruit like papaya, pineapple and passionfruit the size of your palm. With continental options like croissants , pastries, charcuterie and cheeses for breakfast they also do crepes (french inspired) or eggs whichever way you want.

 

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We got the chance to eat at EAST restaurant within Lux Belle Mare for lunch, it’s predominantly a Chinese menu that they showcase here, the menu was a taster sample a selection of dim sum, seafood soup, spiny lobster with broccoli, deep fried chicken, fish hot pot, live handmade noodles, fried rice with Chinese sausages and shrimps. For dessert ginger and lemongrass creme brulee, pomelo and coconut tapioca and green tea ice cream.

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Starting off with a delicious coconut milk virgin cocktail that was not too creamy to drink mixed with coconut water, a great virgin cocktail option or the lemongrass cocktail, vibrant and fragrant.

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Dim sum is really popular as a starter or “gajack” in Mauritius, Chinese restaurants are very common around the island as locals love heading out to eat Chinese food in particular! These were filled with shrimps, prawns mainly and served with chilli sauce.

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The fish hot pot was the best I have tasted so far, the fish is perfectly cooked in a chilli oil mixture, at some point I think I either inhaled too much of the spice but was left with a numb mouth. Still my fault however it didn’t stop me eating this… Flaky & beautifully spiced fish.

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Next we got to watch Chef demonstrate hand pulled noodles, which took about 5 minutes or so.. super quick and expertly done. He rolled and flattened out the noodles, before creating thin noodles for our next course. A less spicy dish of noodles with seafood was comforting.

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Dessert was upon us but not before this lovely duo serenaded up with some funked up freestyle acoustic music and singing about enjoying our stay on the island, lovable characters!

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We got a trio of delicious mini treats but my favourite was the pomelo with coconut tapioca, little small pellets of sago or tapioca which were creamy, jelly-like with the taste of coconut milk and the pomelo added extra tang.

Flacq Market

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Visiting Flacq market is a must do on a trip to Mauritius if staying on the East coast of the island.  This is a bustling fruit and veg market for locals, with noisy bartering, the exciting busy vibe of this Sunday morning market with wafts of salted dry fish and local produce in abundance.

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We wondered in an out of the tens of lanes within the market with vendors on each side of us calling us over to buy their produce, from fresh curry powders (Mauritian, turmeric and achar/vindaye) which we bought most of to over-expensive (tourist) priced vanilla. But some interesting variety of squashes, tasty guavas, small bananas, Victoria pineapples coated in chilli sauce were available to buy.

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Pudine Mais- Polenta cake served by vendors in on their bikes. We only got to spend an hour here, but it was enough to peruse the market, however they also have a food court at the back and they sell textiles in some stalls in the market.

Beach Rouge

An uber cool set up of this beachfront restaurant and bar called Beach Rouge at Lux Belle Mare, reminds me of something you would find in the Mediterranean (this I hear is down to designer Kelly Hoppen) Lit in red hues in the evening to set the ambiance, with a DJ perched in the corner filling the space with heady chilled music we sit down to a tropical inspired cocktail before perusing our menu.

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Tonight we started with razor clams with beetroot sorbet, refreshingly sweet cooling red beetroot and the clams which are silky soft create a perfect light starter

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The tarter was matched with fresh passionfruit, pineapple and a vanilla oil was drizzled over, which slightly overpowered the dish, but an interesting idea to flavour the oil with vanilla.

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The mains consisted of poached dorado foie gras in a consomme with lemongrass , the spiny lobster in the next course was my favourite dish, you can literally taste the sea, a jus accompanied it that surprisingly need not be on the plate it served with crispy tuna and a pumpkin confit.

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The final course was a Rodrigues meringue tart with a tart lemon sorbet.

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To finish off my Lux Belle Mare visit I have to mention the wonderful ICI bar at the hotel that made their own ice creams, I got to sample some lychee and coconut (my favourite flavours in general) that excelled my expectations, creamy, sweet, full of fresh flavour and no additives, perfect for a stroll on a tropical beach…

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Till my next post this week we will be in Reunion Island in the mountains….

Selina x

 

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Mauritius: Cooking Alfresco & Dining at Senses http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/05/27/mauritius/ http://www.tastemauritius.com/2014/05/27/mauritius/#comments Tue, 27 May 2014 11:41:27 +0000 http://www.tastemauritius.com/?p=5526 Day 1, Lux* Resort in Belle Mare, Mauritius Traditional Cookery Class & Senses Restaurant  This time last week I was catching a flight back from Mauritius to London, as my amazing 10  day trip had come to an end. Now back to the UK cooking for supperclub guests and teaching cookery classes I have accumulated [...]

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Day 1, Lux* Resort in Belle Mare, Mauritius

Traditional Cookery Class & Senses Restaurant 

This time last week I was catching a flight back from Mauritius to London, as my amazing 10  day trip had come to an end. Now back to the UK cooking for supperclub guests and teaching cookery classes I have accumulated a wealth of inspiration and recipe ideas from my trip. Here like always I want to share with you my trip to the sunshine island.

We stayed at the luxurious five star Lux* Belle Mare hotel on the east coast of Mauritius, with the Indian Ocean as its backdrop, sparkling beaches, it boasts Mauritius’ largest pool, re-designed by designer Kelly Hoppen the interiors are sleek, stylish yet understated.  The hotel has the Lux* Me spa onsite offering relaxing massages , over three restaurants serving up various cuisines aswell as a tempting ICI bar situated near the pool offering homemade ice creams in exotic flavours to tickle the taste buds.

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As soon as we arrived to fruit cocktails, mini shoulder massages (luxury treatment from the start) we were shown to our rooms before freshening up to arrive for a well needed breakfast located in an alfresco setting amidst a small lake, overlooking a bridge and mini waterfalls.

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We had a cookery class planned for lunch at the hotel, which I was really looking forward to seeing what the Chefs were having us create or demonstrating to the group. The setting was lovely next to the Jardin des Herbes, the hotel’s only herb garden, showcasing their fragrant plants from caripoule, curry leaves, citronelle, thymes, quatre epices and more frequently used in Mauritian cookery.

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I was less familiar with the herb Ayapana grown in the garden, almost quite a heady herb that is used like mint in tea which aids digestion. Here they created it into a cocktail for us which uncannily had a purple hue to it. We also opted for Green Island Mojito style cocktails made using lemon, lime, mint, sugar syrup, rum and soda water.

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Then we were straight on to our alfresco Mauritian home-cooking  lesson, on a table prepared already were ingredients for a palm heart salad, chicken curry and flambee banana. My mouth was watering already thinking about it. The class was more of a demo then interactive where we were shown how to make the palm heart salad, one of our group joined in the making of the chicken curry alongside direction from the chef.

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Being familiar with a Mauritian curry,  the recipe used was pretty identical to how we make it at home, using garlic, ginger, onion, tomatoes, curry leaves, Mauritian curry powder, fresh coriander, cumin & turmeric.

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Then lunch was served, chargrilled large prawns (they are not that big in the UK!) with a creamed, refreshing palm heart salad, made with cucumber and carrots. The salad is seasoned lightly, the palm heart is taken from 5 year old palm trees, also know as the millionaires salad (expensive to make) the result is tender, soft sliced pieces of the heart of palm.

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The curry was light, fragrant and delicious with hints of spice, its not a spicy curry, it went well with a fresh cucumber salad, rice, faratas and lentils. A true Mauritian lunch or dinner!

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The dessert was flambee bananas in a rum caramel served with Malaga ice cream.

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With a quick visit to the pop up bar in the resort we got to make our own exotic cocktails before heading to dinner.

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In the evening we were to try out the hotel’s Senses restaurant, combining a fusion of inspiration from the Maldives, Mauritian, Reunion, Rodrigues, we were treated to a menu of palm heart salad and spiced scallop which was beautifully done for starters. Followed by black chicken (using squid ink), charcoaled , chicken tikka and upma (malai/black) which didn’t appeal to my taste as much but the blackened chicken was smokey and flavourful.

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The main course was fish on a sambhar sauce (a curried, rich, piquant layer of sauce) with a coconut chutney. The fresh produce of the fish takes centre stage here as so it should, but with only slight overpowering of the sambhar sauce, it had me inspired to buy the spices the next day in Flacq market to try myself!

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To finish we were delighted to see a Chocolate delice which appealed to all senses, It was chocolate in many forms, as a fondant (my favourite) to a cheese cake/soured cream shot, chocolate samossa and a rich ice cream.

Not bad for a days work! Next installment coming soon… x

Day 2, Break fast on the beach, East restaurant, Cafe Lux coffee roasting & Flacq market visit 

  

 

 

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