Bombay Breakfast at Dishoom

Where do you go when you’re bored of your local curry house and want something a bit special? In my quest to find the answer, and combine my love of brunch and curried food, I finally got around to trying Dishoom – and I’m honestly ashamed I’ve left it so long. It’s bloody brilliant.

My family and I decided to take my Dad for a boozy birthday brunch due to his love for all things spiced. The Dishoom in Kings Cross spans over three floors and pays homage to the bustling meeting points in India for families, friends and travellers alike in their Bombay-styled outpost. Complete with an oversized railway-station clock alongside other retro fittings and ageing sepia photographs.

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We kicked things off with the house chai and a couple of cocktails. Their chai is delicious – it’s rich, creamy and got a real spice kick (it’s also a total bargain and comes with endless refills).

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Moving onto the food, my parents both opted for the Keema Per Eedu which is a big bowl of spiced chicken keema and bits of chicken liver, topped with two fried eggs, sali crisps and served with pau buns (fluffy white bread rolls to you and I).

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I went from the Full Bombay, which comes with akuri (spicy scrambled eggs), grilled bacon, sausages, toast,grilled tomatoes and masala beans. It’s the perfect Bombay-inspired take on a classic British breakfast.

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Whilst everything is subtly spiced, my sister went for one of the more traditional dishes, the Bombay Omelette, complete with tomato, onion, coriander and chilli.

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Now, we weren’t willing to leave without trying one of their Bacon Naan Rolls, which they’ve earned such a name for themselves for. It’s a bacon butty, but not as we know it. The naan is wrapped around a couple of rashers of bacon, cream cheese, coriander and chilli jam. It was damn tasty.

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If you haven’t been to Dishoom already, then you definitely need to.

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Dishoom, Granary Square, 5 Stable St, Kings Cross, London N1C 4AB

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Brunch at The Grain Store

I love it when old friends come to visit me in London as it provides me with the perfect excuse to visit new restaurants and The Grain Store is somewhere I’ve been planning to visit for a while now. It’s only a few minutes walk from Kings Cross Station and is located next to Caravan in Granary Square.

It’s got high ceilings and big open windows, with exposed industrial steel pips and bare brick walls which both compliments and contrasts the choice of furnishings. All my friends who have been have raved about it, so it had some big shoes to fill.

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I simply adore the fact London is moving away from American diner staples and is shifting towards healthier eateries and The Grain Store is a perfect example of this. It’s great to see so many vegetarian dishes on a menu that look inspired; and whilst it’s not solely a vegetarian restaurant you could easily eat there as a vegetarian or vegan and feel that you have plenty to choose from. The menu is rather large and with so many inventive dishes to choose from, we were left pondering a little longer than usual over what you have.

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In the end I opted for the Kimchi Omelette which is topped with Smoked Salmon and a dollop of Crème Fraîche. I’ve never had Kimchi before so was keen to try something new, it’s basically a Korean spiced pickled cabbage – I loved my flavours in my dish.

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If you like sweet things, there’s the toasted banana loaf, vanilla ricotta, warm passion fruit sauce.

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I already can’t wait to go back for dinner and try their surprise menu which is only £39 per person for six dishes!

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The Grain Store, Granary Square, 1-3 Stable St, London N1C 4AB

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A North Londoners Guide to Eating in North London

If you’re ever spent more than 5 minutes with me, you’ll know how much I love North London. I currently live in Southgate, but I’m counting all my pennies and hoping to move to Finsbury Park. It’s somewhere I’ve always dreamed on living – it’s close enough to the city so I can lace up my trainers and either run or cycle to work, or pop home for a Sunday lunch (or bbq knowing my family).

I get pretty tried of people simply describing North London as only Kings Cross, Islington and Camden. There’s so much more to see and do! Let me take you on a little adventure down the Piccadilly line through your stomach…

Kings Cross

Kings Cross is a huge transport hub for London, and it would be silly for me to ignore it in my guide. Since the development of Granary Square, Kings Cross has become a foodie’s paradise. You’ve got the likes of Granger and Co, Caravan, The Grain Store, and of course Dishoom.

I’ve been to Caravan numerous of times and it never fails to disappoint – their coffee is the perfect pick me in the morning, and their sweet potato and cumin waffle is to die for.

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Holloway

Getting my family to come to this part of London is a nightmare – they’re avid Spurs fan and my dad actually refuses to get off the tube at Arsenal (and still refers to it as Gillespie Road). Some of my highlights include Zia Lucia (a newly opened Pizza joint using black charcoal bases), Vagabond and Le Coq.

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I recently visited The Highbury Arts Club for my sister’s birthday extravaganza – it’s a cute little cafe serving up tapas with exposed brickwork, cosy corners and communal long tables. The food here was so good, I’d highly recommend their pandron peppers, tortilla, and coquettes (and whilst you’re at it.. you might as well order their whole menu). They also do amazing dessert – Scot and I devoured their cheesecake.

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Finsbury Park 

Now I could write a whole post about Finsbury Park, and narrowing down what to include in this section has been incredibility hard.

Get Brunch at Fink’s Salt and Sweet and get to their Avocado Toast. The portion is more then generous and is topped with goats cheese and comes with a harrisa spread – it’s such good value for money.

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Grab a cup of joe at Blighty Coffee. They’re got signature drinks like the Orancino, which is basically Terry’s Chocolate Orange in a cup, and the Spitfire, which is served with cinnamon and chocolate.

Hit up either Yard Sale Pizza or Petek for a spot of lunch or dinner. Petek serves up spot-on Lebanese food, their portions are generous and everything is incredibility tasty.

Finally, grab a pint at the Faltering Fullback. Don’t be put off by the fact that it’s always full or the main room looks like a cross between a sixth-form common room crossed with a 1970s pool hall. It has the most stunning beer garden – it’s quite simply one big treehouse.

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Harringay 

I’ve only recently started exploring Turnpike Lane and Woodgreen since Scott moved here. You’re got to go for a spot of food at Blends, and I simply adore their eggs on sourdough with asparagus and hollandise.

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Mosaica at The Old Chocolate Factory is another one of my favourites – it’s the perfect date spot. It’s in the middle of an industrial estate in Wood Green, but I assure you that you won’t be disappointed.

Southgate 

You’re almost at the end of the Piccadilly line, and here’s where my foodie journey ends. But before it does, make sure you visit Green’s Steakhouse. They do week day offers, and from Monday till Thursday can grab two steak dinners and a bottle of house red for £39 – bargain.

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The Winchmore is one of my favourite local boozers, run by a brother and sister duo and boasts over 70 gins. Their bar staff are incredible as well,  simply let one of them know your favourite fruit and they will whip up a gin for your taste.

Let me know if you visit any of these places or if you have any hidden gems you’d like to share!  

Eat Smart | A guide to grab-and-go highstreet lunches

Not every lunch hour can include a perfectly meal-preped dish from home or a bespoke salad creation at a deli counter. Sometimes you have have 10 minutes to spare away from your desk and the high street is now doing worthy job of stocking its aisle with increasingly interesting and nutritionally sounding options that make that desk lunch a little bit less torturous. And so, here are some of my favourite options.

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Grab the Roast Salmon and Avocado Superbowl. It’s a tasty mix of lentils and quinoa, topped with avocado, kale, edamame beans, a seed mix – and not to mention a hefty portion of brain boosting salmon. It’s got around 25g of protein and with healthy fats from the avocado, you’ll feel fuller for longer.

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Eat

Now the Miso and Tahini Beef Salad isn’t the healthiest of options from Eat, but it is by far my favourite. In the pot you’ll find black rice and colourful selection of vegetables like carrots, edamame beans, red peppers, broccoli and mixed leaves. It’s then topped with slices of rare beef. The dressing is by far the best bit, but is also the naughty part of the salad – it’s a rich and creamy and flavoured with miso and tahini, yum.

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Itsu 

Whenever I walk into Itsu I can’t get salad, I just love sushi – I can’t get enough of it. I usually grab myself the Eat Beautiful Box. It’s filled with tuna and salmon sushi, salmon maki rolls and edamame beans. If I’m feeling particularity indulgent I go for the It’s Everything Box.

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Leon

At Leon they have a huge variety of salads, but go for either the  Vietnamese Chicken Rice Noodle Salad (coming in at only 288 calories) or the Chargrilled Chicken and Chorizo Club Superfood Salad.

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Crussh

Now Crussh is usually the place I head to when I need breakfast on the go but they’re also great for lunch. Get their Beetroot and Goats Cheese Salad, it’s served with Harissa Yoghurt and Pomegrante on a bed on Quinoa. You also have to pick up one of their juices or smoothies whilst you’re here. My favourite is the ‘Fat Burner’ which consists of Apple Juice, Yoghurt, Bananas, Strawberries, Raspberries, Blueberries and Cranberries.

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Yard Sale Pizza | Finsbury Park

I’m always keeping my eye out for new restaurant openings and recommendations in North London, and for a while now I’ve been hearing good things about Yard Sale Pizza. They’ve recently opened a second branch in Finsbury Park and with it being so close to home, I had no excuse not to try it out with a couple of my girlfriends.

It’s got a couple of tables and benches, but it’s really not much more than a takeaway shop yet it’s a complete hive of activity. We nabbed a table at the back and quickly ordered from the 6 or so options – a classic margherita, the squash (butternut squash, goats cheese, rocket and a drizzle of honey), and the TSB (tender stem broccoli, manchego, pine nuts and garlic).

Their bases are crisp and perfect and I adored their cheese to tomato ratio. You don’t get cutlery at Yard Sale pizza just a board and pizza wheel. I’m a firm believer that you have to have dips with your pizza (and we can all thank Domino’s for this). I had their garlic and herb dip, which was thick and creamy and didn’t overpower the pizza. I promise you, I did try and save some for breakfast… but it was too delicious.

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Yard Sale Pizza, 54 Blackstock Rd, London N4 2DW

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