Thursday, 12 December 2019

[GIFTED] Christmas Gifting With Sous Chef

[GIFTED] Post contains gifted products from Sous Chef, however all views and opinions are my own.

As some of you may know, there are very few things I enjoy more in the world than food, and so when Sous Chef offered to send me some gifts to review from their Christmas ranges, I was more than happy to comply. There's absolutely nothing better than Christmas food, and there's definitely something that feel forbidden about eating the fancy stuff before Christmas Eve (my mum is cringing thinking about me taking them out the cupboards with little to no regard, I'm sure) and so I'm here to talk you through what I'd recommend from the Sous Chef Gift Collection.

Whilst I really wanted to be selfish when it came to my picks, it really didn't seem fair, and so I did go for a mixture of things that I could share with Josh and his mum. Having said that, my first pick was something that definitely didn't get shared around, and that was Shluckwerder Edel Marzipan with Dark Chocolate (£1.49). I'm well aware that to many people this sounds like actual hell, but to me this was the dream. Was it amazing? Yes. Did I eat the whole bar in one single sitting? Wouldn't like to comment on that one. I will say though it's very rich, so if you can't handle quite as much sickly sweet in one sitting, then maybe opt for just a piece at a time.

I also opted for the Buttermilk Christmas Cracker (£4.89) which had a selection of clotted cream fudge, mince pie flavoured fudge and caramel sea salt. This was a little divisive, the sea salt was far too salty for Josh but I felt like it cut through what could have been something sickly sweet for me, both Josh and his mum liked the Clotted Cream but it just wasn't for me, and it was quickly decided that the Mince Pie fudge actually tasted a lot like birthday cake icing, but I really wasn't mad about it. Both the inside and outside packaging for the fudge was beautiful, and I think it would make a really lovely gift for someone who might typically be a little hard to buy for.

The final products that I opted for were Love Cocoa's Assorted Christmas Collection, and also their Boozy Collection (£9.31 for a box of eight truffles). Though nothing let this parcel down, these were definitely the unanimous hit; with beautiful packaging, beautifully made truffles and just a wow factor that you want when you're buying chocolate as a present. We sampled everything from prossecco truffles, right through to the elephant in the room (photo?) the brussel sprout truffles. Though they might look unappealing, these are actually milk chocolate filled with an orange centre and they were some of our favourites out of both boxes, but if you want to put your kids off eating the last one? The way they look is definitely effective.

All in all, for fancy Christmas food at a price that really isn't going to break the bank as much as you think, Sous Chef could be a fantastic option, just make sure you hide them away so they don't get stuck in the do-not-touch-until-Christmas cupboard! Their express delivery is running right up until December 23rd for Christmas Eve delivery, and so if you're cutting it fine, keep them in mind!

Sammy xo.

Tuesday, 3 December 2019

Liverpool's Baltic Market

I have to admit that when it comes to Liverpool, I'm pretty lazy. I stick to what I know, what I like and, for the most part, the middle of town because I never think about walking further out if I can avoid it. Though I have visited the infamous Baltic Market before, it's usually been in the day with my brother who works in Liverpool, rather than with my friends. A few weeks ago, though, we were in Liverpool anyway and trying to find a food place that we all agreed on; cue the ridiculous amount of choice that The Baltic Market has to offer. We found ourselves there and ready to eat pretty much anything we could lay our hands on, and I definitely wasn't disappointed.

Vendors within the market do change pretty regularly, but when we went our offerings were from Chop! Chop!, Lunya, Pattersons, Hafla Hafla, Little Furnace, Caribou Poutine, Bacaro and Fritto, most of which already have huge followings within the city. Now, I will say, we weren't very adventurous in picking our food; but we'd been to Pattersons to do our original review two days earlier and it'd been playing on our minds since, so me and Josh opted for some of their Chicken Strippers (£4.95). Dan, who originally raved about Pattersons so much that we went, came with us and also recommended Caribou Poutine which I hadn't been to since the branch opened in the city centre and so we also opted for Original Poutine with meat gravy and fried onions (£5).

The chicken here was every bit as good as the chicken we had in the bigger restaurant a few days earlier, and we scoffed that down really quickly - I have to say though, that it was the poutine that was the star of the show for me. Melty, squeaky cheese with thick, herby gravy on soggy fries with more crispy onions than it should ever be okay to eat? Definitely count me in for that again. This is the type of meal that you think about and crave for days after, and even writing this now I'm wondering when I can next fit time in to go and grab another portion. We shared the chicken and poutine and it was more than enough food, and so for £9.95 we had a whole meal between us. The bar is a little more expensive than I'd like, but I feel like it evens out somewhere around moderate however you look at it.

I'm also a sucker for dessert and so when I saw that they had The Midnight Delivery, I was more than willing to try some desserts. Josh and I are the kind of couple that like to get two things we really want and then split them because we're both so indecisive and so we ended up with Hot Kinder Cookie Dough (£6.50) and Salted Caramel Filled Churros with milk and white chocolate drizzle. (£7.50). Did we spent more on our desserts than we did on our main meal? Absolutely. Was it worth it? Absolutely. The Kinder Cookie Dough was a little too sweet for me, but was definitely Josh's favourite of the two desserts, and we all agreed that the Churros with it's cinnamon outside and sweet, rich inside were a general, overall winner. I'm actually really sad that I'm not in the Uber area for The Midnight Delivery, but it definitely is probably a good thing for my bank balance.

Overall I really love the atmosphere of The Baltic Market, and I think it's really nice to have a place essentially on your doorstep that you could create a different meal within every single time that you went (within reason). If you've ever been to The Baltic Market, I'd love to know what you'd recommend for next time!

Sammy xo.