Thursday, 19 November 2009

London - A Very Foodie Weekend

So yes, I went off to 'The Big Smoke' (as us non-Londonders like to call it haha) last weekend. To be honest, I have been to London quite a few times growing up so I wasn't going with the intentions of doing touristy things or shopping on Oxford Street (although I am sure there are more touristy things I haven't done and want to do - like go to the V&A and The Globe!). One of my best friends has recently moved to London for a new job so I was going to visit her mainly. She informed me she had a surprise planned for me and when I got there, she presented me with tickets for MasterChef Live! As a bit of a geeky foodie I was really, really excited! Celebrity chefs! Free food samples! Free alcohol samples! Tasty foods to buy!

It was HUGE. So many stalls. We had so much fun, eating strawberry chocolate fondue, trying flavoured liquers, spying on James Martin (I got my book signed! We nearly touched!), eating so many sweet things, and buying probably too much tea.

MasterChef Live

If you love food and celebrity chefs, you should really go. Lots of the stalls sell items at trade prices so you can get them cheaper there than in the shops. I bought some teapigs tea, vanilla green tea, Beanies flavoured coffee and delicious stem and crystalised ginger.

Then on Sunday we decided to head to the Hummingbird Bakery. We went to the Portobello Road branch because it was closest to Emma's house. After walking around for nearly an hour, admiring houses in notting hill and generally being lost, we finally found it! It was the first time I've been to Portobello Road and for a Sunday it was very lively. It was kind of like a more grown up Camden I thought.

portobello road

portobello road

I brought home a box of 9 cupcakes and they were all polished off by Tuesday, they were that good. Below is the red velvet one that I had on Sunday night, after the tiring train journey home. I then took the black bottom cupcake into Uni with me for my packed lunch and oh my! It was AMAZING! It is one of the few recipes I haven't tried out of the Hummingbird Bakery cookbook but I MUST! SOON! I'm starting to drool a little just thinking about it...

red velvet

So yes, it was a very very foodie weekend! On Portobello Road there was also an AMAZING Spanish food shop, called R Garcia & Sons. I ran around it squealing at all the things reminding me of my childhood and bought some turron for christmas (because it's so hard to get here we save it for special occassions, the soft almond one is our favourite), amazing chorizo and morcilla. I wish they did mail order.

How were your weekends? I hope they were as full of lovely food and good company as mine was!


24 comments:

  1. It's great to go to London and act like a true Londoner, rather than a tourist! I do love the V&A, though.

    Those cupcakes look and sound delicious.

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  2. I'm jealous of your foodie trip, it all sounds wonderful
    My favourite thing to do in london is visit the v&a then walk down to hummingbird.

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  3. OH. MY. GOD. Masterchef Live sounds like the stuff of dreams. Think I'll definitely be going next year now I've even heard of it...!

    And hold up, hold up - you're Spanish? Or grew up in Spain?

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  4. I loved reading this post. Looks like you had a fantastic foodie weekend! I'm getting hungry now.

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  5. Portobello is mad on a Sunday! I feel bad for not knowing but what's your connection to Spain? Did you live there when you were younger or something? xo

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  6. Masterchef Live sounds amazing, I really want to visit London someday! I went to one of those food shows once and it was so much fun.

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  7. I miss London so much :( I want to come back and live there (better in Camden Town, hahaha!!)

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  8. Love the images!
    Yummy cupcake.

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  9. The V&A and Globe are musts, you should def go sometime soon!
    My mum went to the Masterchef thing and loved it, she is a woman obsessed :) So glad you had fun, I love seeing what people make of London....though Garcia is a rip off merchant!!!

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  10. I love London as well. Even though I'm not British I truly and honestly love this country (I studied English at Uni). I spent quite a lot of time in Britain (London included) before I had children and I still love coming back. The last time I visited was two years ago. My absolutely favourite places in London are Covent Garden and St Katherine's Docks. Lovely!
    It sounds like you had a wonderful time in London as well, it's great to have friends in places like London and do things together that you both enjoy!

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  11. wow, looks great! ah jealous. could eat a million of those cupcakes.

    xx

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  12. Mmm...I'm hungry for some red velvet cupcakes now. I've never heard of MasterChef Live but it looks like a wonderful event to attend! A food lover's absolute dream! What a pal you have to surprise you with tickets like that.

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  13. Oh, I've been meaning to ask!

    I'm not sure if you've begun yet, but how are you liking Library & Information Science?

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  14. this sounds like my dream weekend!

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  15. Yum Yum! I went to Taste of Bath festival last year, which was ace- lots of delicious free samples. Sounds like the same kind of thing on a much bigger scale! And those cupcakes look divine!

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  16. you know i'm not a huge fan of london but this was such an intersting post, nice to see a different side to it rather than the tourist-y element! ;)

    masterchef live must have been a blast, btw!

    oh and we call belfast "the big smoke" in northern ireland, so i get where youre coming from! ;)

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  17. i really love london.its the greatest and most exciting city i've been in my entire life!
    haha the cucake look very delicĂ­ous:)
    oh and you should go to V&A..its really worth visiting especially the costume part:)

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  18. Your weekend sounds deliciously tempting!! I love Hummingbird bakery, I went to the one in Portobello Market before too and got a rose cupcake with a slice of carrot cake! Delicious:)

    Yes, the dress is from Topshop! I first saw it on the cherry blossom girl. When I saw it in the store, I just knew I had to get it!!

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  19. I'm glad you finally got to go to the Hummingbird! It's awesome isn't it? The black bottom cupcakes were amazing. I'm so jealous that you got nine!

    The V&A is lovely, btw, well worth a visit. And free!

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  20. I've made the black bottomed cupcakes (minus the frosting though-pics on my blog), very tasty!

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  21. Their red velvet cupcakes are definitely the best. I have their cookbook, I drool over the pictures constantly! I've been meaning to visit London but this post REALLY makes me want to go!

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  22. Oooh, I love the Hummingbird bakery. The cakes look beautiful!

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  23. I have never heard of there! However have looked at the book on amazon, and have already sent it to my bf for a hint as to what he can get me for v.day!!!

    Next time im over in the west end I am definately going to take a trip to the bakery!

    x <3 x

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