Sunday 18 November 2012

Event: "Operations Hot" Party

by Simon Fernandez of ferdiesfoodlab    don't forget it's Movember
and Recipe: Classic Spanish Roast Almonds (at the bottom!)

I remember seeing a Green Peace campaign poster of a large Blue Whale as it crashed into the sea, enormous fins and body parting the sea, great waves swelling from it's landing in the water in a monumental and I hope pretty joyful gigantescan splash! The headline for the poster was "Against All Odds" !! Sometimes when I'm organising one of our social banquets it feels a little like that, I guess I get a real thrill (and a bunch of extra grey hairs, that's new greyer than normal hairs!!!) out of knowing that unless I have a "make it happen" attitude, then the chance of a catasrophic failure is ever present. It doesn't take many careless people in the mix to blow perfection (which is what we aim for) clean out of the water. BOOOM! Cheers mate! No, . . . .  thanks! Really, thanks for that!  Anyway, this week's banquet was a corker . . . .

Despite all the pieces falling into place rather later than is comfortable, fall into place they did!

You know somewhere along the line someone didn't get the primer email when they're overheard as they arrive saying "I had to google what a supper club was. . ."
Frankly that ain't a bad thing! Half the fun of the banquet is not quite knowing what to expect or who you are to going meet, the anticipation, the trepidation, and the gamble!

We also had a few Mo's about the room. Don't forget 2 free tickets are up for grabs for anyone who donates more than £10 to Movember details at the ferdiesfoodlab Mo Space check out the Movember blog, if you're going to do a Supper 'lip' Club you're going to need some essentials!!


~ the menu & flight for the evening ~

taken in the warm light of the banquet hall
salmon parfait forest w/ rosemary bread
(everyone was too polite to mention there aren't 2 r in forest) parfait cream infused with smoked salmon, a touch of white wine vinegar
is used to sharpen the parfait and accentuate the flavour of the salmon
served with a roast torn bread dressed with rosemary infused exrta virgin olive oil
Pairing: Caixas Albarino


bacon swirl & invisible tomato
smoked bacon, medium cheddar cheese, soft cheese, onion and hint of garlic, dressed w/ parsley and rolled in puff pastry
served w/ a tomato consomme infused with basil & seasoned with smoked salt and dressed with a pea shoot
Pairing: Catena Chardonnay


king crab & samphire
steamed over white wine, the white wine is reduced and mixed with cream and oysters to make the accompanying sauce
served with quartered baby plum tomatoes, basil and samphire
alternative sweeter sauce of pear champagne and vanilla is also served

Pairing: Santenay Coteaux Oliver

For the king crab: you simply can't taste the sea in the white sauce in this image, or the vanilla and the champagn blended with the sweet pear juice - problema! 2 sauces 1 wine! Hmmm re-think required! Luckily most folk went with one sauce!
sweet or salty!!!!


cambodian salad
core ingredients being red coss, grated celeriac with lemon, and chorizo,
the salad is mixed with a complex sauce containing palm sugar, fermented shrimp, lemon grass, lime & onion
& dressed with chilli, peanuts, garlic chives & lemon zest
Pairing: Yalumba Eden Valley


rack and black
seared rack of lamb roast w/ thyme, red wine and anchovies whole garlic
panko coated morcilla balls (black pudding, nutmeg, cinnamon, pine nuts, onion)
rosemary infused butternut squash puree - served w/ red wine and fermented garlic jus and dressed with purple stem chard
Pairing: Urbina Gran Reserva 1994

the black inthe rack and black - quenelled and yet to be panko-ed

millionaire cake
onto a clarified butter and chocolate crumb base are layered mascarpone creme fraiche and salted caramel topped with black olive ganache (milk & dark chocolate mixed with a black olive caramel)
and dusted with salted bread crumbs and roast pine nuts
served on a bed of bitter orange and thyme paste w/ orange syrup
Pairing: Elysium Black Muscat

salted lemon fudge & roast almonds
the soft fudge made and topped with white chocolate had salted lemon pieces running through it
the almonds are lightly roasted seasoned with smoked salt to accentuate the flavour of the nut
Pairing: Noble One De Bortoli

comments from our guests!! 
** One of our guests asked me "What drives you?",
"passion, pure passion!", I cannot tell a lie. It had been a smooth delivery and I was pleased with what we had put together. The reply, "Not many that can say that! It really shows in the food! Truly awesome, I think this is the best food I've had in London in over 2 years!" - I was very touched : )

** "It was nice everyone was moving about between courses - because everyone's eating the same thing it made it really easy to swap places and socialise!
I think this was helped in part by the fact that everyone had signed up to the paired flight of wine - ferdie

** Las almedras y la morcilla tio, perfecto, todo fue fabuloso, y para tanta gente a la misma vez! Alucinante. Guay hombre!
"the roast almonds and the morcilla, dude, perfect, everything was fabulous, and for so many people at the same time! Impressive. Cool man! "

** "This was not a 'serious dessrt', you know what I mean? It wasn't overpowerinlgy [SIC] sweet, subtle and tatsed great!!

On Movember:
It breaks all the rules, but what about a monkey tail? It grows out of a side burn along your chin and up onto your lip!!! : )

how to book

classic roast almonds recipe:
roast the almonds 200C 4mins

whip an egg white to soft peaks
Let the almonds cool (this stops the egg white cooking on contact) mix 1 tbsp of whipped white per 300g of nuts, and coat them, spread them on a roasting tin and salt with . .

some smoked salt!

Toss the nuts to coat them and roast for another 2-3 mins again at 200C - classic Spanish tapa! Leave them to cool a little then serve.

Great with a beer on a sunny day, or as a nibble at the end of a night!! None of them ever come back!

lots of love 

ferdie : )

Sunday 11 November 2012

Recipe: How To Throw A Supper 'Lip' Club for Movember

by Simon Fernandez of ferdiesfoodlab for Movember

All donations of £10 or more to ferdiesfoodlab Mo Space  are entered in our the prize draw! (unless anonymous of course!)

 PRIZE: 2 SEATS at the head of the ferdiesfoodlab banquet, any available date! (worth £100)

To donate check out the ferdiesfoodlab Mo Space 

Current entrants: 0     Chance of winning: 100%

Even if you only pledge a fiver via the ferdiesfoodlab Mo Space it will really help, every pledge counts!! 

If you want to throw a supper club - a supper fun way to fundraise -  First of all sign up for your own Mo Space here, and click register. This will allow you to collect donations!

Throwing a supper club is simple if you get all your
Mo Bros & Mo Sistas involved! Here's the basics

skinning the fish for the Ceviche

ingredients (serves as many as you want!)
for the supper
some drinks,
some people, 

a menu idea (recipes in Movember book - see here)
some food
a fat chunk of NASA ('nice and safe attitude' or 'naise an saif ackitude' as Joy would say!!)
and somewhere to eat together

for the garnish
couple more drinks
some righteous tunes, aye!

a little conversation!!

When I were a lad . . . . . . all we had was a  ZX spectrun with 48Kb of RAM
apparatus / equipment
spatula for keeping naughty
Mo Bros & Mo Sistas in check, spank!

wooden spoon with cake mix on (carrot is often better than a spatula)

Table's ready - guests are all pitching in!!


Get all your Mo Bros & Mo Sistas to come early and help you with the prep and the cooking (good for social bonding innit).
Make sure everyone has a drink and a job and the tunes are flowing.
It doesn't have to be 6 courses, rack and mac and a sticky toffee pudding will do (maybe add a green starter).

Rack and Mac . . . . sings with delight, lush!
thinking ahead 
Don't forget to have a camera, to catch the fun.
Make sure the shopping is done and the drinks are in before the Mo Bros & Mo Sistas arrive! (doesn't hurt if they bring a few drinks of course!)
Sounds easy right? But you won't be laughing when you've run out of gin and tonic, and you realise you don't have any pork shoulder! Someone's going to have to go for replacements and necessaries!!! (never happened at the foodlab! ahem cough!)

Nice Mo Bro!

what could go wrong? (notes)
* You forget to tell everyone it's for Movember and give them a link to your MO SPACE so they can donate.

* You're completely battered before you've done all the required prep, could get messy! Get all your chopping done early!

* Somehow I didn't raise any Mo!! Make sure everyone knows it's for Movember

Don't forget to have a little fun along the way - it's for a good cause - MOVEMBER

to serve 

Make sure your plates are warm and everyone has something to eat that agrees with them!! ENJOY and remember to give!

techniques used 

A little bit of love . . . always : ) 
Some camaraderie. 
A little showboating - where appropriate!
A little lubrication - right from the start (very shortly after the love), fix the Mo Bros & Mo Sistas a wee dram as they arrive!

Thanks for coming Mo Bros & Mo Sistas Big smiles, CHEERS!!!!!


Please donate here!
Create your own Mo Space HERE!

~ menu ~ 

Sustainable White Fish Ceviche Edamame

Arroz al Horno w/ con Verduaras (Asparragos y Judías) y Salsa Picante

Dessert Cointreau Sorbet


(recipes in the book)
SOME SUGGESTIONS (some with recipe links)

Perfectly formed Baps (use 90g for pictured)


Will You Marry Me - Slow Roast Lamb and Roasties

Nothing like a fresh loaf of Homemade Bread - use 700g of this dough in a loaf tin for a lovely bit of bread!

Pan Fried Duck Breast w/ Vegetable Green Curry & Noodles - use your imagination for the green curry!!

It's the little touches that can make a dish, we use Micro Shrimps fried in clarified butter to garnish our Vietnamese pancake sushi. Crispy little fellas went down quite well! 

Two tone Mac and Cheese - Tomato on the bottom and a gorgeous Cheese Sauce on the Top!! (post coming) There was a lot of complaining when I cooked this for an unsuspecting person who shall remain nameless - needless to say plate was clean on return!!! : )

Smoked River Cobbler, Plaice & Salsa Picante w/ Coriander Black Rice and Wonton Crisp Salad


Rack of Lamb - Classic, simple, tasty!
Rub with a little oil and salt, sear in a heavy based roasting tin, until golden (pic) roast for 15-20min @ 200C

No mate! On the front of your face!! Your Mo's gone east!

Saturday 10 November 2012

Supper lip Club for Movember @ferdiesfoodlab

Salmon Parfait Forrest
served w/
Rosemary Bread

Morcilla & Apple Tart w/ Green Leaves Dressed w/ Champaign & Vanilla


Yum Salaad . . . (Cambodiam Inspired Chorizo & Celeriac Salad)

Slow Roast Crispy Pork Belly w/ Cockscomb Wontons & Lychee / Braeburn Slice  
served w/
Pan Asian Sushi: Shitake Mushroom Maki, Ho Fun Rolls w/ Nem Chua , Shrimp & Crab Roll, Viet Pancake Bites

Millionaire Cake w/ Bitter Thyme Orange & Salted Caramel

Roast Almonds and Salted Lemon Fudge

Of course ferdiesfoodlab would be nothing without our guests! : )

was a really nice night!
deep in conversation

 As usual, super guests make super vibe and tonight was no exception!!! Thank you so much everyone!! XX


At the end of each supper club we leave comment cards for feedback - helps us improve the evening, all feed back is helpful. Here's what folk said:

Loved the salmon and the tart (first time eating black pudding - mmmm)

Very good. Maybe main course not in a bowl, but 9/10 for everything else.

Execellent night thank you!! Loved the pastry course - THANKS

Fantastic!  (less pork next time)

I have do confess was quite a porky menu!! I'll change that for the next one!! - ferdie

The food was fantastic, morcilla was amazing. I enjoyed the relaxed nature of the evening, and did I say the food was amazing!

Very Impressed. I'm a big fan of black pudding so loved the morcilla + atmosphere was very relaxed. All in all a hugely enjoyable night wilt great food Thank You.

The Location - Adgate East - Underground!!!

How To Book / Attend

How To Book / Attend
Fancy getting stuck in? Click on the image above and to see how : ) . . . hope to see you soon.

More Techniques, Basics and Corker Recipes

More Techniques, Basics and Corker Recipes
If there's something you've tried at ferdiesfoodlab or a technique you want to know about drop us a line at and I'll put up a post about it!!


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