Fenghuang Toffee

 

fenghuang_ginger_toffeeFenghuang — Phoenix Town — is a town in the west of Hunan Province, 6 hours by bus from the provincial capital of Changsha. It is built on the banks of a river, and the old town is very largely preserved or has been restored keeping its original style.

Fenghuang has a number of sweet specialities, the most common of which can be seen being made in small shops all over the old town: ginger toffee.

 

 

 

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Ramadan

Ramadan

Mohsin Abbas, Director of Arts Versa and Ramadan Festival,  and Reza Mahammad of Star of India have a fascinating and enlightening discussion about Ramadan, what it represents to the followers of Islam and the thinking behind its discipline.

This is the first in a series of films about foods eaten at different religious festivals.

It's Complicated

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Meryl Streep occasionally lets her hair down and when she does she's sexy and fun. Watch her teach Steve Martin how to make a chocolate croissant in It's Complicated.

Richard Craig's Wine of the Week - No.1

Two from the independent Jeroboams

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Chateau Lalande-Borie 2007 Saint-Julien £22.95
This estate was bought by the Borie family, owners of Ducru Beaucaillou in 1970. This does not guarantee a fine existence! However in this case, in a difficult, cool and wet vintage, this wine is seductive and pure. Definitely Bordelais, medium bodied, fragrant and gentle tannins. It shows truly superb and flexible winemaking, producing a wine "of the year" rather than throwing money and wood at unsuitable raw materials. It would make a great accompanyment for lamb, veal and cocks.

 

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Sancerre 2007 Cuvee Reserve "Silex" Domaine Serge Laloue £17.50
This is top draw Sancerre. Great depth and beautiful balance. Crisp and lively but more than just rasping. A gentle softening, due to the low yields and bottle age, of the often searingly acidic Sauvignon Blanc that can be produced in these Northern climes makes this wine a great match for seafood and also light meats and vegetables.

 

Sabrina

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Marcel Hillaire, one of the screen's great character actors, teaches a class of would be Cordon Bleu graduates that includes Audrey Hepburn how to crack an egg. A scene from Billy Wilder's frothy comedy "Sabrina".

Gerald Röser

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Food journalist, Andy Lynes, talks to Gerald Röser, Head Chef of the Mirabelle at the Grand Hotel, Eastbourne, and Chairman of Master Chefs of Great Britain.  Topics include the excellence of Sussex produce, how to find the best suppliers and ingredients and foraging in the wild, something Gerald has been doing quietly for decades.

Fuchsia Dunlop - Every Grain of Rice

 

Fuchsia Dunlop 2Fuchsia Dunlop is a world authority on Chinese cooking and her books, articles and blogs are an absolute delight.  

Here she talks about her latest book, Every Grain of Rice, which, unlike her others, is not focused on one province, but is a collection of delicious everyday recipes, mainly from southern China.

Every Grain of Rice

This is an extract from a longer interview and discussion on Chinese food with Mark Hilton of Xiamen University which will follow shortly.

 

Inspector Lavardin

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The  French director Claude Chabrol takes his food very seriously. Even the humble fried egg must be cooked perfectly.

Breakfast Lady

Breakfast Lady
Every morning in Xiamen in China, you find people selling breakfast foods from barrows to people on their way to work. The project was set up by the government about 8 years ago to provide employment for the jobless and to ensure that everyone could have a good breakfast.

The Table Comes First

The Table Comes First

 

Adam Gopnik's The Table Comes First is a witty meditation on life and food.  It is subtitled Family, France and the Meaning of Food.  Jesse Thompson reads two extracts here.

You can also see Adam Gopnik in conversation with Fergus Henderson, who unwittingly gave him the title for his book, in our Watch section.