Brunch at Dishoom

I don’t usually give another chance to restaurants that disappoint the first time around but I made an exception for Dishoom.

Truth be told, after our last visit, I really wasn’t keen to go back. For me, it simply wasn’t worth the hype.

But many people told me that going for dinner was a mistake, and brunch was what Dishoom was all about.

Brunch at Dishoom King's Cross | Cake + Whisky

And so, after hearing the same advice from quite a few foodie friends, I finally gave in and booked a table for breakfast at their dazzingly beautiful King’s Cross venue.

(yes, BOOK! Quite an improvement on the 30 min+ in the cold already!)

Brunch at Dishoom King's Cross | Cake + WhiskyBrunch at Dishoom King's Cross | Cake + Whisky

Once again, Dishoom signature decor, a mix of Bombay knick-knacks and vintage touches, took my breath away.

Brunch at Dishoom King's Cross | Cake + Whisky

The carefully thought-out details and the smell of Chai…

The second you step in, you’re transported miles away from London and its rain into the heart of India’s cultural capital: Bombay, home of Bollywood and the famous Irani caf√©s Dishoom was inspired by.

But did the food measure up?

Considering it’s been in basically every ‘London’s best brunch’ list, we came with high expectations.

Brunch at Dishoom King's Cross | Cake + Whisky

 

And having at heart to do as thourough a job as humanly possible, we covered the table in as many dishes as we could manage.

And here’s the good news. Some of it was very good indeed.

Brunch at Dishoom King's Cross | Cake + Whisky

Top of the list being Dishoom’s¬†famous Bacon Naan Roll.

Brunch at Dishoom King's Cross | Cake + Whisky Brunch at Dishoom King's Cross | Cake + Whisky

Freshly baked tandoor naan, graced with a touch of cream cheese, chilli tomato jam and fresh herbs, and wrapped around rock-salt cured streaky bacon.

A Dishoom signature dish truly deserving of its accolades.

Brunch at Dishoom King's Cross | Cake + Whisky

Not bad either were the Masala beans.

A massive portion for £1.5, with just enough warming chilli and a little sprinkle of fresh coriander, it is the perfect brunch side and anything but your usual baked beans.

Unfortunately, the rest of our selection wasn’t quite as successful.

Brunch at Dishoom King's Cross | Cake + Whisky

Akuri –¬†An Irani caf√© staple of spicy scrambled eggs with onion and tomato, piled up alongside plump pau buns and served with grilled tomato.

Brunch at Dishoom King's Cross | Cake + Whisky

A winner on paper, but while it tasted quite nice with a nice kick of green chilli and fresh coriander, the texture of the eggs was truly awful as they were dry, yet with plenty of liquid leaking out (presumably from the chopped vegetables not being pre-cooked).

Brunch at Dishoom King's Cross | Cake + Whisky Brunch at Dishoom King's Cross | Cake + Whisky

Kejriwal (fried eggs on chilli cheese toast) was even more of a disappointment, as the inviting orange-yolked eggs were un-evenly cooked (one was runny and the other entirely cooked through) and so covered in cracked black pepper that it was impossible to taste anything else. Quite a shame, really.

Brunch at Dishoom King's Cross | Cake + Whisky

And if the Chai was alright (not the best I’ve had, but not the worse either, and really quite helpful if you’re nursing a bit of a cold as I was that day), the Red grape & lemon wasn’t quite so. Too much lemon ruined the balance of the juice and brought out the unpleasant bitterness of grapes, instead of enhancing its natural sweetness.

So once again, Dishoom was quite a hit-or-miss sort of experience.

But if you stay right away from the fancy-looking options, and focus all your attention on the Bacon naan roll, it is actually quite a good brunch option!

Bacon, naan, chai. Sold.

Dishoom King’s Cross, 5 Stable St, London N1C 4AB –¬†Book a table here

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Brunch at Dishoom

Brunch at The Modern Pantry

Some weeks just seem endless.

You know the feeling. Minutes feel like hours, days feel like weeks and by Wednesday, the only thing on your mind is brunch.

And if your week is anything like mine, I know a place you’re going to¬†love¬†come brunch day…

Brunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + Whisky Brunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + Whisky

Overlooking Clerkenwell’s iconic St John’s Square, Anna Hansen’s The Modern Pantry is any brunch-lover dream come true.

Brunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + WhiskyBrunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + WhiskyBrunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + WhiskyBrunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + Whisky

And with exposed bricks, loads of light, and just enough quirky, charming little details, it is a very dreamy little café indeed!

Brunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + Whisky

⬆⬆ Dining room goals right there ⬆⬆

Brunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + Whisky

(needless to say, we’ll do that the second we have a place of our own)

Brunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + Whisky

But first, coffee!

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Black & stromy, with just a touch of condensed milk, Vietnamese-style, for him.

Brunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + WhiskyBrunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + Whisky

And a hot, steamy cup of jasmine tea for her.

With a few of The Modern Pantry’s iconic dishes on the side…

Brunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + Whisky

Sugar-cured New Caledonian prawn omelette, green chilli, spring onion, coriander, smoked chilli sambal and toast

Brunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + Whisky

Sweet, soft prawns, punchy sambal and a kick of green chilli, all blanketed by the dreamiest of omelette…

A dish definitely worth its reputation!

Brunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + Whisky

And more than worthy of a close-up, too!

Brunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + Whisky

Poached eggs with grilled chorizo, slow-roast tomatoes and plantain fritters.

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A sunny take on the traditional English Breakfast and #yolkporn at its very best.

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All washed down with the appropriate amount of ‘liquid goodness’.

And followed by a little bit of pudding action…

Brunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + Whisky

Sour cherry brownie with Greek yoghurt cream, malt & chocolate crumb and berries.

Brunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + Whisky

Soft, gooey, sweet, sour, rich and fresh all at once, it’s a masterpiece of a dessert.

Brunch at The Modern Pantry | Cake + Whisky

An absolute triumph, much like the rest of the meal.

And the #1 reason to put brunch at The Modern Pantry on the agenda for next weekend.

It’s a truly eggcelent brunch spot, bu it gets busy so make sure you book ahead.

 

The Modern Pantry,¬†47-48 St John’s Square, Clerkenwell, London EC1V 4JJ

 

Brunch at The Modern Pantry

5 Quick, Easy, Healthy Lunch Ideas

I’m one of those people who always, ALWAYS carry food everywhere they go. No matter where I’m going, it’s extremely likely you’ll find some sort of snack in my bag. And by “some sort of snack”, I mean enough food to feed a small army. For several days.

Of course, I am also obsessed with lunchboxes¬†but I tend to almost carry the same things (mainly leftovers). There’s absolutely nothing wrong with leftovers BUT if I want to make sure I don’t get food-envy come lunchtime (and end up going down to Pret for some chocolate croissants), I clearly needed some change! So¬†I’ve been working on some healthy-bunny recipes over the looooong weekend and here 5¬†of my favourite new lunch ideas!

No-carb Burritos with Broccoli & Avocado (V)
Cake + Whisky | Recipes | Healthy Lunch IdeasCake + Whisky | Recipes | Healthy Lunch Ideas
Inspired by a few of¬†Chocolate & Zucchini‘s recipes (see links underneath).

(Serves 1) Prep your charred broccoli/avocado/tahini salad as explained here¬†(I added chilli flakes and pomegranate seeds too). Make a one-egg omelette as explained¬†here. Over-fill your omelette (isn’t that the only way to make a burrito anyway?). Serve with more charred broccoli.

Now that I think of it, I’m sure the salad would be lovely with hard-boiled eggs mixed in too (and probably more convenient to put in a lunch box…).

Warm green beans salad with Jamon and walnuts
Cake + Whisky | Recipes | Healthy Lunch IdeasInspired by Chocolate & Zucchini‘s excellent eponymous book.

(Serves 1) Cook green beans in salted boiling water. Meanwhile, make a grain mustard + olive oil + cider vinegar + black pepper dressing. Toss in the beans. Sprinkle with Jamon (I brought mine back from Barcelona!), walnuts and grated parmesan. 

Zucchini noodles alla puttanesca (V)Cake + Whisky | Recipes | Healthy Lunch IdeasCake + Whisky | Recipes | Healthy Lunch IdeasInspired by The Londoner‘s brilliant “Slutty Pasta but adapted to be vegetarian!

(Serves 1) Using a vegetable peeler (or a spiralizer if you have one of those!), make linguine-like ribbons with 1 big-ish zucchini. In a pan, cook 2 cloves of garlic into a spoonful of olive oil until slightly caramelized. Add in 6-8 sliced black olives, a spoonful of chopped capers and a pinch of chilli flakes. Toss in 1/4 of a can of tomatoes, 2 table spoons of soy sauce and let the whole lot reduce for a few minutes. Pour the sauce on your coodles and top with cracked black pepper, a little bit of olive oil and some grated parmesan.

Pan-fried kale, soft boiled eggs and parsley sauce (V)

Cake + Whisky | Recipes | Healthy Lunch Ideas(Serves 1) In a food processor, blend 4 garlic cloves, half a bunch of parsley , salt, pepper and olive oil until you get a fairly homogenous green sauce. Put a pot of water to boil. When it is, add in your eggs and cook for 5 minutes, then cool the eggs under cold water and shell them off. Pan-fry about a bowl of shredded curly kale in a spoonful of olive oil (add a bit of water if it browns too quickly). Sprinkle with salt, dried garlic, black pepper and chilli flakes. Top with the sauce. 

Vietnamese Prawn SoupCake + Whisky | Recipes | Healthy Lunch Ideas 1(Serves 2) In a big saucepan, fry some ginger, a few garlic cloves and the white part of a couple of spring onions. Add in two carrots cut into little straws, half a can of sweet corn and a few handfuls of bean sprouts. Add in some stock (I used some I made, but that would work as well!). Season with salt, chilli flakes, fish sauce and soy sauce, thenadd in your prawns (I used frozen un-cooked ones). Let the whole lot simmer for a few minutes, then pour the soup in a bowl and top with the green part of the spring onions, a small handful of chopped mint leaves and chives. 

What did you have for lunch today? Anything I could be inspired by?¬†I’m always looking for new ideas!!

5 Quick, Easy, Healthy Lunch Ideas