What's New #19 : Light

I remember a friend once said that she found the colour Magnolia offensive. Well, there is nothing beige about "Red Candy". It's a company which has a huge range of modern and designer interior homeware. Their products are funky, colourful and fun. Their online catalogue is so fresh that for once, I decided to devote the whole of "What's New" just to it.


For a long time, I've been searching high and low for a light pendant nothing seemed to quite fit in our Bohemian looking lounge until of course not only one but several choices came along. Needless to say that He was not double-pleased with the idea of a pineapple on his desk but.....

As soon as we saw it, we both agreed on a pendant called "wild and wolf wild wolf" a bit of a mouth full I agree.

It diffuses the light beautifully but be quick because I hear that this line is to be discontinued. However, there is so much more to choose from  Red Candy, take a look.

In situs in the lounge
Read more about how we restored our Victorian house
7 things you need to know about 

Disclaimer I was not financially compensated for this post. All opinions expressed here are my own and I retain full editorial control.

Chocolate Truffles with Japanese Flavours

These sophisticated chocolate truffles developed by Yutaka Japanese food experts come with a warning and you'll soon see why.

Chocolate truffle with Yzu, Miso

The same way, one will keep champagne truffles out of reach of little sticky fingers. Pickled Sushi Ginger, Wasabi Furikake and Yuzu flavoured chocolate truffles might be best kept among adults.

The basic recipe is as we know it. To make 30 - 36 truffles, you'll need
  • 200g dark good quality chocolate
  • 60ml double cream
  • 80g unsalted butter
Please note that when I try this recipe out I halved the proportions
Method for all truffles
In a double saucepan (or a Pyrex bowl in a saucepan), place chocolate, butter and cream. Heat through slowly until smooth whilst whisking. Remove from heat and divide into 3 equal portions, adding the various flavourings to each individual portion as below. Place in the fridge to set – overnight if possible. Get the mixture out a little before using it so that the hard layer which has formed overnight has time to soften.

I'll start with my favourite if you don't mind.

Yzu, chocolate truffles
Yuzu chocolate truffles
 Yuzu is a citrus. It always surprised me that it's yet to be widely used in Europe. Maybe we are waiting for the arrival of Yuku which is a sweeter version of this fruit as Yuzu is very tart. The flavour is akin to mandarin-orange and marries ever so well with chocolate. Yuzu is never eaten as a fruit but used in cooking only.
       To make Yuzu truffles, add 2 tsp Yutaka Yuzu to one of the bases before refrigerating.

Chocolate Truffle with Asian Flavours
Wasabi Furikake Chocolate Truffle
Furikake means shaking. These truffles are now known at Pebble Soup HQ as Wasabi Shaky Shaky. 

  • You'll need 2 tbs of the Yutaka ready mix which is a mixture of sesame seeds and Wasabi. 

This is a chocolate truffle for the more adventurous palates, on reflexion, He decided that though very pleasant, the wasabi mixture would be put to better use in a cracker recipe.

Chocolate Truffle, pickled Sushi Ginger
Pickled Sushi Ginger Flavouring
I'm very partial to ginger, however before now I never had the pleasure to cook with sushi ginger, it is so very different. I don't think I'll ever buy any other type of pickled ginger from now on. This sushi ginger is thinly sliced rather than Julienne (that's the long thicker stripe).
  • You'll need 2 tbs of chopped Yutaka sushi ginger
If you decide to make only one type of truffle out of these three, this is the one you should try out. On two accounts:
       1- you'll be able to use the sushi ginger in other recipes. Let's face it we don't want to end up with yet another jar in the fridge.
       2- most of us are already familiar with the taste of ginger. Delicious.

For the coating the choice is yours. I used Vermicelli, icing sugar and golden sugar nuggets as it's what I had in the pastry box. The recipe sheet recommended drinking chocolate, cocoa, melted white chocolate, pink salt crystal and dark chocolate.

Chocolate Truffle with Asian Flavours

This post has been shared with

 We Should Cocoa hosted by Chocolette over at Tin and Thyme

Disclaimer: I was sent a voucher and the ingredients by Yutaka to recreate these recipes. No other payment was exchanged. As usual, words are my own.

Spiced Cod Falafel with Harissa Mayonnaise from "Fress" by Emma Spitzer

Cod Flalafel, Harissa

More Harissa but moreover, a recipe from a very talented Master Chef finalist, Emma Spitzer. 

Emma Spitzer was born and raised in Brighton to Jewish parents of Polish and Russian descent. "She’s definitely someone who cooks from the heart, and I love that” said John Torode. Her style is big, bold flavours with many different ingredients coming together on one plate. She creates a fusion of Middle-Eastern and Eastern European flavours 

As Masterchef returned to our screens, we hear from all the contestants that this is a program which changed their life. It's certainly the case for Tony Rodd (same series as Emma) who I interviewed recently for the Greenwich Visitor as Tony is opening a restaurant in Blackheath soon.

As for Emma, she has been teaching cookery classes and demonstrating at food festivals, running sell-out supper clubs and catering for private dining events and her debut cookbook, "Fress" is out today. So this recipe is a bit of a scoop.

Emma Spitzer creates a fusion of Middle-Eastern and Eastern European flavours with this contemporary Jewish cookbook. “Fress” is a Yiddish word meaning “to eat copiously and without restraint”’s debut cookbook. Spitzer’s style of cooking is unfussy and uncomplicated, extracting the maximum flavour from the humblest of ingredients without spending hours in the kitchen. Her food has a strong Jewish identity.

Her melting pot of inspiration embraces Poland and Russia, Jewish recipes learned from her mother, travels in Israel, Egypt, Jordan and North Africa, as well as Algerian recipes shared by her mother-in-law. Emma describes it to everyone in the know as Ashkenazi meets Sephardi.

In my opinion, "Fress" is a happy book or in the author's words “Fress is the realisation of a dream to bring classic, Jewish dishes into the modern day, in a book where the recipes are both accessible and exciting for the home cook to create.” 

* Small plates for sharing 
* Soups 
* Big plates with meat and fish 
* Big plates with veg 
* Dressings, pickles and sauces *
* Sides and salads *
* Sweets and baking *

Spiced Cod Falafel with Harissa Mayonnaise

Falafel is ubiquitous across the Middle East and there are numerous ways
to make them, but the humble chickpea is always the staple ingredient.
Accompanied with a nice runny Tahini Dressing, perhaps a dash
of chilli sauce and hot chips in doughy warm pitta bread, they are simply
heavenly. This is how you will find them served across falafel bars throughout
Israel. When you add some succulent white fish as the main ingredient, it
lightens them into more of a fishcake texture. They work beautifully with
a harissa mayonnaise, perfect for a starter or light supper.

Makes about 20 falafel

  • 200g dried chickpeas, soaked in cold water overnight
  • table salt
  • 800g skinless cod loin (or any similar
  • white fish fillet, such as coley, hake or
  • haddock), chopped into large pieces
  • 1 onion, quartered
  • 3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • large handful of coriander, stalks and
  • leaves finely chopped
  • small handful of dill, stalks and leaves
  • finely chopped
  • small handful of flat leaf parsley, stalks
  • and leaves finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground sumac
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 80g sesame seeds
  • 2 eggs
  • 100g panko breadcrumbs, I use ordinary breadcrumbs
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • sunflower oil, for deep-frying
  • sea salt flakes
  • lemon wedges, for squeezing

  • For the harissa mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon Harissa
  • 3–4 tablespoons mayonnaise


Drain the chickpeas, rinse and place in a large saucepan. 
Cover with plenty of fresh salted water and bring to the boil. Continue to cook for at least 2 hours or until soft, then drain and leave to cool.

Cut the cod into chunks and add to a food processor along with the cooled
chickpeas, onion, garlic and herbs. 
Pulse in short bursts so as not to ruin the delicate nature of the fish – a meat grinder works really well here, if you have one. 

Transfer to a bowl, add the spices, 1 teaspoon table salt (or 2 teaspoons
coarse sea salt), a few twists of black pepper and the sesame seeds and stir

Cover and pop the mixture into the fridge for 30 minutes.

Wet your hands and roll the mixture into walnut-sized balls.

Beat the eggs in a bowl and spread the breadcrumbs out on a plate. Dip each falafel in turn into the beaten egg and then roll in the breadcrumbs.

Preheat the oven to 110°C/90°C fan/Gas Mark ¼.

Heat the oil for deep-frying in a deep-fat fryer or large saucepan to around
150°C (don’t fill the pan more than halfway). 

Deep-fry the falafel, in batches, for about 5–6 minutes until golden. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on a plate lined with kitchen paper, then keep the cooked falafel warm in the oven while you fry the rest.

Meanwhile, mix the harissa with the mayonnaise, adding more or less of
each depending on how hot you want it.

Season the falafel with sea salt flakes and serve immediately accompanied

by the Harissa Mayonnaise and lemon wedges for squeezing over.

As Emma's family meals reminds me very much of my maternal grandfather's, I link this recipe to Inheritance Recipes, hosted here this month in collaboration with Coffee 'n Vanilla

I am also linking this recipe to COOK BLOG SHARE

Cadbury's creme eggs mini brownies cupcakes

 Mini brownies cupcakes with Cadbury's creme eggs (sponsored post)

Before moving to London, I spend half a decade travelling to and fro from Lyon. It is said that long distance relationships are difficult. Ours wasn't but it was emotionally challenging.

Parting, of course, was the most difficult bit and I had to hold on very hard to what was waiting for me, in Lyon, in order not cry so much, that the train would become a blur. The image, I relished the most was the three little faces of my friends' children as they would throw themselves....on my bag at the first opportunity. Would it or wouldn't it this time round contained Cadbury Creme Eggs?

Forward twenty years and I were yet again at a transport hub, this time I was doing the waiting. Number three of these little boys was coming back from eighteen months around the world, looking all tanned, sporting a beard and all together very different from the toddler in home-made dungarees but, still adorable.

After a week, readjusting, it was time for him to return to Lyon but not before, getting hold of half a dozen of Cadbury's creme eggs.... for his friends' children.

So when Cadbury asked me to participate in their #CremeEggHuntingSeason, I smiled at the memories, chose my recipe and baked happy.

Mini Brownie Cupcakes with Cadbury Creme Eggs


125g dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids)
100g unsalted butter
125g light muscovado sugar
2 large Free range eggs
75g plain flour, sifted
1/4 tsp salt


Preheat oven to 160C fan, 180C conventional, 350F, gas 4.

Melt the butter and dark chocolate together either in the microwave or in a bowl over boiling water or in a large saucepan at very low temperature

when completely melted stir in the sugar and the 2 Free range eggs one by one. Fold in the flour and salt and spoon into the cupcake cases so they are nearly full. 

Pipe the fluff onto each cupcake and bake in the centre of the oven for 12 minutes. Leave to cool.

Then crush the cadburys creme eggs just add them to the top making sure they are evenly spread!

Read about Cadbury's world - a guest post review -

Inheritance Recipes - April 17 -

More than ever we need to show that we are a nation made of a myriad of cultures. We love our British recipes and we might well choose to pass them down to the younger generations. But we are also proud of our ancestry and the friends who still live in our country of origin. So we cook their recipes too. Please, join us, it's easy


Inheritance Recipes is a challenge that Margot of Coffee and Vanilla and I have started to celebrate dishes food bloggers cherish. We would love to hear about your friends and family recipes.

Recipes which have been passed down by a family member, a friend, through an ancestral culture and dishes which you would like to bestow to future generations.

Margot has rounded up March challenge, head to Coffee 'n Vanilla for inspiration

We will share your recipes via our social media channels and include them in the round-up (with pictures) at the end of the month. We will also add your recipes to the Inheritance Recipes Pinterest board (that has 2.3 K followers) and include your blog’s handle in our Inheritance Recipes list on Twitter. Don’t forget to subscribe to them both!


Please, link back to challenge page on both: Pebble Soup and Coffee and Vanilla blog.

If possible, display one of the IR badges on your recipe post. (Click through to open one of the badges, right-click to save it to your computer and then upload badge to your blog.)
Feel free to link up to past posts but please, update them with links to the challenge pages to qualify.

Recipe suggestions:
  1. traditional recipes or preparation methods,
  2. national recipes from all over the globe,
  3. dishes that you often prepare with your children (starting a new tradition),
  4. recipes inspired by childhood memories,
  5. dishes inherited from a family member or a friend.
Closing date is the 30th April.

Please note that entries that fail to follow “how to enter” instructions won’t be approved.

If you use Twitter to promote your recipe, please use #InheritanceRecipes, tweet it @coffeenvanilla or @solangeweb and we will re-tweet it.

And last but not least, have a look at the terms and conditions if you haven't yet done so.
We can't wait to see your recipes and read their stories.

April 17 collection

via Quinto Gusto

Via Pebble Soup an Emma Spitzer's recipe

via Veggie Dessert



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