RESTAURANT REVIEW: ‘ When Eating Out of Can Is the Height of Luxury in London’s Soho ‘

In the heart of London’s Soho sits a gleaming new restaurant — Tincan. The premise is simple: No kitchen, very few staff, and the menu all comes out of a can. Specifically, canned fish.

Tincan sells gourmet canned fish from around the world, though many of the items come from Portugal and Spain, where tinned delicacies have long been appreciated as culinary luxuries.

Tincan sells gourmet canned fish from around the world, though many of the items come from Portugal and Spain, where tinned delicacies have long been appreciated as culinary luxuries.

To many people, canned food conjures up images of stocking up for winter, emergency rations, or — for Brits — the deprivations of World War II.

“The big challenge we had was how to change the perception of tinned food in the U.K.,” says Max Arrocet, one of the directors of AL_A, the architecture firm behind Tincan. He and his team, he says, wanted to “elevate the tin to an object of desire.”

Indeed, there’s a strong element of buying with your eyes at Tincan. Rows of gourmet-quality tins, beautifully packaged in collectible-worthy cans, are displayed at eye level.

“This combines our two passions: design and food,” Arrocet tells me when I meet him for lunch at Tincan.

The products are carefully chosen not just for taste, but for presentation. “If we have two products that are very close in terms of taste, we will definitely go for the tin that looks better,” he says.

Most products on the menu come from Portugal and Spain, Arrocet’s native country, where tinned delicacies have long been appreciated as culinary luxuries. On the day I visit, there are over 20 different varieties of tinned delicacies on display. The shelves in the shop behind the counter boast even more options.

The writer's meal included anchovies and baby squid in their own ink, served with sides of bread and small bowls of salad greens, chopped onions and peppers.

The writer’s meal included anchovies and baby squid in their own ink, served with sides of bread and small bowls of salad greens, chopped onions and peppers.

We order the baby squid served in its own ink, some anchovies and cod liver. The food arrives quickly, unsurprising given that no preparation is needed.

Arrocet recommends the cod with a  drop of oil and some sea salt. The squid is my favorite, and goes well with the plate of bread that comes as a standard side dish at Tincan, along with a very small bowl of salad greens. The anchovies taste nothing like what I was expecting: Instead of sharp, salty, “pizza anchovies,” these are fleshy, smooth-textured.

Sourcing is a big deal for Tincan, Arrocet says. “Family-run  businesses make better products,” he comments. His team, he says, scrutinizes the credentials of all of their suppliers. When they first opened Tincan, the owners faced criticism over one of their bluefin tuna products — so they stopped stocking it.

Arrocet thinks canned food is one of  the greenest options around: Tinned fish has a long shelf life, there’s no refrigeration required in the transportation phase, and even in the restaurant itself, the products don’t need to be cooled. Only the anchovies are kept at a low temperature. “But in reality, you don’t really need to — we’re doing it because that’s what they suggest you do,” Max says. “So if you think about it in terms of energy efficiency, this is really energy efficient.”

Some popular canned fish species, like sardines, can also be a relatively more sustainable option, as well as a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids, which is why celebrity chefs like England’s Jamie Oliver and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall have been advocating their use in recent years. In Paris, Alain Ducasse has said he plans to use “humbler” fish in his newly reopened, three-Michelin-starred restaurant.



‘ The ‘Sioux Chef’ Is Putting Pre-Colonization Food Back On The Menu ‘

Like most chefs, Sean Sherman practically lives in the kitchen. But in his spare time, this member of the Oglala Lakota tribe has been on a quest to identify the foods his ancestors ate on the Great Plains before European settlers appeared on the scene. After years of researching and experimenting with “pre-colonization” foods, he’s preparing to open a restaurant in the Twin Cities this winter that showcases those foods, reborn for contemporary palates.

Sean Sherman, who calls himself the "Sioux Chef," grew up on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota.

Sean Sherman, who calls himself the “Sioux Chef,” grew up on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota.

Sherman, who calls himself the Sioux Chef, grew up on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota. It’s where he first started to learn about the traditional foods of the Plains, whether it was hunting animals like pronghorn antelope and grouse, or picking chokecherries for wojapi, a berry soup.

“We were close to the Badlands and its sand hills, which is not the best growing area by far,” says Sherman, who’s now 40. “But we would also spend weeks in the Black Hills, crawling around and learning stuff.”

Sherman’s grandfather was among the first Native American children to go to mission schools on the reservation, and he was one of Sherman’s first teachers. Forced assimilation during the 19th and early 20th centuries wiped out much of Native American food culture across the country. When his grandfather died when Sherman was 18, he was left with many unanswered questions.

In the meantime, Sherman worked his way up in the restaurant world, eventually becoming an executive chef at Minneapolis’ La Bodega in 2000. Around the same time, he had the idea to write a Lakota cookbook. Although there were some Native American cookbooks already on the market, he says he found that most of them focused on the Southwest or made too many generalizations about food across regions and tribes.



‘ Best Cheese to Use for Making Pizza ‘

Scientists Explain Why Nobody Puts Cheddar on Pizza

Denis Vrublevski/Shutterstock

Here is what happens, chemically, when you bake a pizza. (Warning: The following description will be ever-so-slightly disgusting.)

The water molecules contained in the cheese atop the pizza—all those little H2Os, trapped between the protein and the fat—heat up. In fairly short order, the water begins to boil. When that happens, the water becomes steam. But the steam is trapped in the cheese—inside all that protein and fat—so it can’t evaporate into the surrounding air. Instead, it pushes against the surface of the cheese. The cheese, in turn, starts to bubble.

So that’s what generally happens. What that basic process looks like in practice, though, varies greatly depending on which kind of cheese tops the pizza. If the cheese has more moisture, the bubbles the steam creates will be large. A less elastic cheese will produce smaller bubbles.

And that distinction, in turn, affects what is arguably the best part of a pizza: the cheese’s ability to brown in the oven. All that bubbling and steaming causes the oil to leak out of the melting cheese, settling on the surface. Cheese with high moisture content and low fat content will create bubbles large enough to break that surface of oil, exposing the moisture in the bubble directly to the oven’s heat—meaning that it evaporates, leaving the rest of the cheese to brown. Only some cheeses produce that effect, though. If a cheese is low-moisture and low-fat, it will burn; if it’s high-moisture and high-fat it will simply stay greasy without browning.

All of which helps to explain why, when it comes to pizza, there is one cheese to rule them all—and why that cheese is, greasy hands down, mozzarella. Mozzarella hits that high-moisture, low-fat sweet spot that makes for a bendable, brownable pizza topping. And now, thanks to a team of food scientists at the University of Auckland in New Zealand, we know a bit more about why that is.

The researchers, the BBC reports, developed a high-resolution camera, along with specialized computer software, that are able to measure, with unprecedented precision, the blistering and browning of pizza cheese. They then put various kinds of cheeses to the pizza-topping test—because quantification. Because curiosity. Because science.

The experiment went like this: The team sprinkled grated forms of several different cheeses—cheddar, colby, edam, emmental, gruyere, provolone, and, of course, mozzarella—on pizza crusts and baked them in an oven. (The baking time was the same for each variety, as was, for each experimental “pizza,” a lack of sauce.) The team then used its camera to capture the color uniformity of the cheese—browned spots indicating a lack of uniformity—to render an analysis of a cheese’s ability to brown. They also subjected the cheese to what the BBC delightfully terms “a standard panel of cheese tests,” including measurements of elasticity, moisture content, the amount of oil released as the cheese melts, and the temperature at which it melts.

The team’s results, recently published in the Journal of Food Science, confirm that browning, as Bryony James, the the study leader, explains in a video accompanying the paper, “is dictated by a combination of the composition and the mechanical properties of the cheese itself, as well as every other component of the pizza.” They also confirm what generations of pizza bakers and pizza enthusiasts have long known: that pizza, in its Platonic Form, is topped with mozzarella. Ooey, gooey, chemically perfect mozzarella.

Via BBC Future


‘ Our Saturday Night Supper Favourite Home Made Pizza In 4 Easy Steps ‘

Here is a real Saturday Night Favourite that we love. Hope you will as well.



For the base

  • 300g strong bread flour
  • 1 tsp instant yeast (from a sachet or a tub)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for drizzling

For the tomato sauce

  • 100ml passata
  • handful fresh basil or 1 tsp dried
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed

For the topping

  • 125g ball mozzarella, sliced
  • handful grated or shaved parmesan
  • handful cherry tomatoes, halved

To finish

  • handful basil leaves (optional)


  1. Make the base: Put the flour into a large bowl, then stir in the yeast and salt. Make a well, pour in 200ml warm water and the olive oil and bring together with a wooden spoon until you have a soft, fairly wet dough. Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 5 mins until smooth. Cover with a tea towel and set aside. You can leave the dough to rise if you like, but it’s not essential for a thin crust.
  2. Make the sauce: Mix the passata, basil and crushed garlic together, then season to taste. Leave to stand at room temperature while you get on with shaping the base.
  3. Roll out the dough: If you’ve let the dough rise, give it a quick knead, then split into two balls. On a floured surface, roll out the dough into large rounds, about 25cm across, using a rolling pin. The dough needs to be very thin as it will rise in the oven. Lift the rounds onto two floured baking sheets.
  4. Top and bake: Heat oven to 240C/fan 220C /gas 8. Put another baking sheet or an upturned baking tray in the oven on the top shelf. Smooth sauce over bases with the back of a spoon. Scatter with cheese and tomatoes, drizzle with olive oil and season. Put one pizza, still on its baking sheet, on top of the preheated sheet or tray. Bake for 8-10 mins until crisp. Serve with a little more olive oil, and basil leaves if using. Repeat step for remaining pizza.

‘ Winter Warmer Banana and Bailey’s Bread Butter Pudding ‘

Hello Foodies,

Cooked this one the other day from the Great Jamie Oliver and it really is great …….. #chefstip .. Recommended.

Bailey's Bread and Butter Pudding '

Bailey’s Bread and Butter Pudding ‘

This is my ultimate new twist on that classic British pud that everyone loves. I’ve added a super-gooey layer of bananas, pecans and chocolate, and with the addition of Baileys, this is definitely my new guilty pleasure. Just be really careful when using the blowtorch – when it lights the sugar, it can flare up unexpectedly and I don’t want you singeing your eyebrows like Jonathan Ross almost did!


  • 75 g unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing, softened

  • 7 to 8 slices good-quality white bread

  • 100 g golden caster sugar , plus 1 heaped tablespoon for sprinkling

  • 1 vanilla pod, halved lengthways and seeds scraped out

  • 4 large free-range eggs

  • 600 ml double cream

  • 600 ml semi-skimmed milk

  • 4 ripe bananas

  • 75 g pecan nuts

  • 100 ml Baileys

  • Optional

  • 100 g dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids)


Preheat the oven to 180°C/350F/gas 4. Lightly butter the bread on one side, then cut each piece in half diagonally.
Whisk the sugar, vanilla seeds and eggs together in a large bowl until well combined, then pour in the cream and milk and continue whisking until smooth. Peel and roughly slice the bananas, then roughly bash up the pecans and chocolate, if using.

Rub the inside of a baking dish (roughly 25cm x 30cm) with a little butter, then layer up the bread (butter-side up), bananas, pecans and chocolate, if using, finishing with a final layer of bread (again butter-side up). Drizzle over the Baileys and custardy mixture, then leave to stand for around 20 minutes, or until the bread begins to soak up the liquid.

Bake in the hot oven for around 35 minutes, or until set around the edges but still wobbly in the middle. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly, then serve as is, or sprinkle over the caster sugar and blast with a blowtorch to caramelise the top. Delicious served with good-quality vanilla ice cream.

Nutritional Information Amount per serving:
  • Calories78539%
  • Carbs53.4g21%
  • Sugar31.1g35%
  • Fat56.1g80%
  • Saturates29.7g148%
  • Protein13.8g31%
Of an adult’s reference intake




This is the first of my hand picked ‘ Healthy Recipe of the Day ‘ ideas and this one comes from George Matalan but be aware it is a copyrighted article so do not change anything. Also cannot be re-blogged

If you don’t know what to serve for dinner tonight …

While seaweed, or sea vegetables, is becoming more familiar to us in the west, many people still want to know how to incorporate it into their meals. This recipe is a great way to enjoy more of these nutrient-rich foods.

Seaweed Rice

Seaweed RicePrep and Cook Time: 35 minutes


  • 2 medium pieces wakame, (2 TBS soaked and chopped)*
  • 2 TBS chopped dulse seaweed
  • 2-1/4 cups warm water
  • 1/2 medium onion, minced
  • 2 large cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 cup long grain brown rice
  • salt and white pepper to taste
  • *For more on Sea vegetables.


  1. Chop garlic and mince onion and let them sit for 5-10 minutes to enhance their health-promoting benefits.
  2. Rinse wakame, and soak in the warm water. After 5 minutes, squeeze out the water from the wakame and chop it. Save water.
  3. While wakame is soaking, chop the dulse.
  4. Heat 1 TBS of seaweed soaking water in a medium saucepan. Healthy Sauté chopped onion over medium heat for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in garlic, rice, chopped wakame, dulse, and the water in which the wakame was soaked.
  5. Bring water to a boil on high heat. As soon as it begins to boil, reduce heat to low and cover. Cook for about 35 minutes. Season with salt and white pepper to taste.

Serves 4 as side dish

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In-Depth Nutritional Profile for Seaweed Rice

Healthy Food Tip

I was wondering on what you thought when it comes the high fat content of tofu. plant protein.

The fat content of tofu is primarily healthy polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats with very little saturated fat. Tofu is a rich source of the essential omega-6 and omega-3 fats that are required daily by the body for many physiological functions. Importantly, the fat profile of tofu is much healthier than most types of meat.

As background, fats are probably the most complex of the macromolecules in foods because there are so many different types of fats. Unfortunately, fats have been given a bad reputation, in part because fat is the way we store excess calories, and in part because saturated fats, trans-fatty acids, and cholesterol have been asociated with health conditions like cardiovascular disease and obesity. The facts are, however, that not only are all fats not bad, but some fats have been shown to be health-promoting, and some fats are absolutely essential for your health. So, when you think about fats, the quality of the fat, and therefore the quality of the food from which you are getting the fat, really matters. We would encourage you to read more about the essential role of fats in the body via this article on our website: A New Way of Looking at Fats

Printer Friendly Version of I was wondering on what you thought when it comes the high fat content of tofu. plant protein.

If you have any questions about today’s Healthy Food Tip Ask George Your Question

New way of cooking … thanks: I first started visiting the web site then I ordered the book for my daughter. My steamer pan was handy once in a while … now it is essential. The mix of vegtables and grains and cooking tecneques has taken vegetables from side dish to main dish. It is great and fun. – GA

Visit our homepage at

Copyright © 2014 The George Mateljan Foundation, All Rights Reserved

BITES OF HEALTHY FOOD; ‘ Maca Energy Bars ‘

When you start reading all about eating healthy, there are certain foods that come up.  Kale, chia seeds, goji berries and maca are just some of them.

Maca Energy Bars

Maca root is a tuber, kind of like a potato.  It is very well known as a natural energy booster.

It can also help with hormonal issues such as menopause and fertility.

Maca is rich in B vitamins as well.  So I decided to make an energy bar with it.

This energy bar is not only vegan, but grain free and gluten free too.

Here is a Recipe l Found to Try:

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes



  • In a food processor, grind the almonds into a course consistency.
  • Add them to a bowl with the sunflower seeds, maca powder, flax meal, pepitas, chia seeds and salt.
  • In a saucepan, combine the maple syrup, almond butter and coconut oil.
  • Mix until all are well combined.
  • Add it to the bowl with the dried ingredients.
  • Tear a sheet of parchment slightly bigger than an 8X8 pan.
  • Line an 8X8 pan with the paper.
  • Spread in the mixture and pack down tight .
  • Place in the fridge to set.  About 1 hour.

You should get 8 bars out of a batch according to the recipe ingredients.

Store them in the fridge or even freeze them for longer storage.



BITES OF HEALTHY FOOD: ‘ Whole Grain Raspberry Energy Bars’

Wheat seems to have a bad reputation these days, but in its natural unrefined state, the grain has a host of important nutrients. Always try to opt for whole-wheat products, which haven’t been refined and stripped of their natural goodness.

Photo by Perry Santanachote

Photo by Perry Santanachote

Whenever we can, we also like to add wheat germ into the mix — the nutrient-rich embryo of the wheat kernel that is removed during the refining process.

Packed with important B vitamins, such as folate, thiamin and vitamin B6; and the minerals zinc, magnesium and manganese, wheat germ is a super grain that’s easily incorporated into baked goods. In this recipe, we replaced some of the flour with germ, but the wholesome breakfast bars are also filled with fiber from oats, flax seeds and raspberries.

Enjoy one with a cup of yogurt for a well-rounded morning meal.

Whole-Grain Raspberry Jam Bars Recipe

Serves 24

Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes

The Skinny

Per bar:

  • 170 cal
  • 10 g fat (5 g sat)
  • 19 g carbs
  • 106 mg sodium
  • 2.3 g fiber
  • 3 g protein


Cooking oil spray
2 cups whole-wheat flour
1/2 cup wheat germ
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 sticks butter, cut into 16 pieces and softened
1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup walnut pieces
1/4 cup light brown sugar
2 tablespoons ground flax seeds
3/4 cup sugar-free raspberry jam
3/4 cup fresh raspberries
1 tablespoon lemon juice



‘ Shark on Menu at Farm School Could Cause Blindness or Even Death’

#AceFoodNews – UNITED STATES (Maine) – September 29 –Shark meat is in and chicken fingers are out for some schools abiding by First Lady Michelle Obama’s lunch rules.The U.S. Department of Agriculture highlighted an elementary school in Maine on Wednesday that is taking the standards from the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act to a different level.

Mercury Levels in Shark Meat

“The cafeteria is the biggest classroom in the school where students are taught to make healthy choices for themselves beginning in kindergarten,” wrote Linda Mailhot, the head cook at Mount Desert Elementary School in North-East Harbour Maine, in a blog post for the USDA.

Mailhot said that kids get to choose from “nutritious and appealing” foods, such as shark meat, kale salad, and broccoli slaw. The school also has a “walking club” and students do yoga before class.

“Students progress each day through a fruit-and-vegetable bar and an entrée station,” said Mailhot. “Along this route they choose the nutritious and appealing foods they need to build a balanced meal according to the new school meal standards issued by USDA.”

“Many of our entrée offerings are multinational, which is a great way to introduce students to nutritional foods from a variety of cultures,” she said. “By empowering students in the cafeteria, they learn to make healthy choices for life.”

“Farm to School is a large part of our program, for this reason we utilize foods from local farms and Maine’s largest farm, the ocean,” Mailhot continued. “We have served lobster rolls, locally caught haddock and shark.”

According to Men’s Fitness, shark meat can be “terribly unhealthy.”

The magazine said mercury levels in sharks “can cause coordination loss, blindness, and even death,” and cited a 2004 report from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that warned,

CNN in 1996 do not eat shark, swordfish, king mackerel, or tile fish because they contain high levels of mercury,again citing the EPA so it is about time chicken fingers with out shark meat are served up to our children.


‘ Rhode Island Oysters Back on the Menu Thanks to Local’s ‘

#AceFoodNews – RHODE ISLAND – September 25 – Rhode Island oysters are considered a delicacy, and not too long ago, they were nearly overfished to the point of extinction.


‘ Jules Opton-Himmel Local Operator ‘

Opton-Himmel’s farm is one of a growing  number of local operations that are ensuring the oyster population remains healthy and intact.

Check out the full map.

Click to check out the full map.

Why we chose these oysters:

Before founding Walrus and Carpenter, Opton-Himmel worked on a number of shellfish restoration projects as a field biologist.

He knows as well as anyone that oysters are a naturally sustainable source of protein, because they filter seawater and replenish their habitats without requiring any external source of food.

At Walrus and Carpenter, all harvesting is done by hand, and Opton-Himmel only sells his oysters in state and in New York City around the winter holidays.

He refuses to ship overseas or across the country.

Opton-Himmel has partnered with local chefs to host summertime dinners by the farm. “When people come down for the dinner, they learn about how aquaculture works,” he says. “We’re actually stewards of the environment.”