I would like to introduce you to a very special lady Laura Hutcheson and ‘Team Loz’ who will be running the Hampton Court Half Marathon for the John King Brain Tumour Foundation on 18th March 2018.
Here is Laura’s story
Thank you for taking the time to visit my Just Giving Page, which explains a bit, more about my fundraising goal.
In April 2017, I experienced a seizure whilst away on a family holiday. When I returned home, an EEG and MRI confirmed the reason for the seizure and I was diagnosed with Grade I Meningioma (brain tumour).
I was referred to the care of neurosurgeon Dr Tim Jones and at the beginning of May, I was admitted to the McKissock ward in the Atkinson Morley wing at St Georges Hospital. Dr Tim and his team performed a craniotomy and were able to successfully remove the tumour from the front part of my brain.
During my time at St Georges, my husband David and myself spent a lot of time in the McKissock gardens and were so grateful to have an area to sit outside of the ward and my room.
The John King Brain Tumour Foundation maintains the gardens. The family of the former patient of Dr Tim’s runs the Foundation. Its other project is raising money for a state of the art microscope for brain surgery, which is not currently available through NHS funding. As a way of showing my gratitude for the incredible care I receive from everyone at the Atkinson Morley and for Dr Tim (and in particular for leaving me with a very bumpy head but most of my hair to cover it!) I want to support the John King Brain Tumour Foundation and the work they do to maintain the sanctuary, which is the McKissock gardens.
So on 18th march 2018, I have co-erred 9 friend into joining a little team to run the Hampton Court Palace Half Marathon.
Whilst I cant train to the full extent I would like the DVLA aren't keen on me driving right now, I’m getting my miles in walking the pavements of Oxshott! My fellow team members will be training in the mean January/February weather and I’m hoping your support will help spur them on!
Every donation, however small, will make a massive difference to the efforts of the John King Foundation and our efforts to get round the course on the day. I would like to say a HUGE thank you for reading this and for any contributions to the cause!
Please dig deep and support Laura and her team to raise these valuable funds for such a worthy cause.
A favourite to many, there is nothing more comforting when you are feeling under the weather than a fresh piece of toast laden with your favourite marmalade. Not only does it give you that comforting, feel-good factor but the King’s Fine food range of San Giuliano Marmalades, produced in Sicily, will add that little ray of sunshine with every bite.
Marmalade is made by taking the flesh and peels from citrus fruits to make a preserve. Whilst this food is high in sugar, it provides a range of nutritional benefits, supplementing your diet with vitamins and helping to keep your fat, calorie and sodium intake low.
Laura King has worked closely with the Sicilian based San Giuliano family for many years who produce and supply the finest marmalades in the world. Hand-harvested fruits are 100% organically grown and cooked in a home kitchen overlooking the picturesque Italian countryside.
The high percentage of fruit and the use of natural ingredients gives a unique taste, texture and colour to all the San Giuliano products.
Production takes place exclusively during winter and spring, where fruit is picked by hand daily from the estate as they mature. The fruit is used fresh, never refrigerated, it is cut by hand and cooked using no preservatives, jellying or colouring agents.
For a double burst of healthiness, naturally, the perfect accompaniment to your marmalade selection has to be the San Giuliano Orange Blossom Honey. Whether drizzled on top of your favourite dish or stirred into a warm mug of tea, the beautiful flavours are guaranteed to please.
For thousands of years, honey has been recognised for both its uses as a food and a medicine. Packed full of beneficial plant compounds and anti-oxidants, it is said honey offers countless health benefits.
For those of you who like to experiment further afield with your ingredients, we’ve found a fabulous recipe for you to try…
ORANGE MARMALADE MUFFIN
Makes 12 medium muffins
150g plain flour (a generous cup)
150g of whole wheat flour (a generous cup)
1 tablespoon baking powder
a large pinch of fine sea salt
280ml of milk (1 1/4 cups)
2 teaspoon freshly squeezed orange juice
1 large free range egg, beaten
4 tablespoons melted butter
150g of San Giuliano orange marmalade (1/2 cup) - plus a bit extra to top (optional)
Preheat the oven to 220*C/425*F. Butter a deep 12 cup muffin tin well, or line with paper liners. Set aside.
Whisk the flours, baking powder and sea salt together. Whisk the milk, orange juice, beaten egg, and melted butter together. Make a well in the centre of the flour and add the liquid ingredients. Mix together quickly, without over mixing. You want a coarse, slightly streaky batter. Stir the marmalade through with a fork to loosen and then fold it into the muffin batter. Spoon into the prepared muffin cups. Using a teaspoon dab some extra marmalade on top of the muffins. (optional, but recommended!)
Bake for 20 minutes, until well risen and golden brown. A toothpick inserted in the centre should come out clean.
How to enjoy King's Caviar by Laura King
Caviar is best served as simple as possible – using mother of pearl or horn utensils.
To taste caviar: We always taste caviar on the soft cushion of the back of our hand between the thumb and forefinger.
Let it rest for a few seconds and then taste by lifting the caviar from your flesh with your lips and tongue and allow it to gently roll round your mouth.The caviar will be very soft on the palette.
Caviar should not pop in the mouth - this only happens with caviar that has been pasteurized which firms up the egg and gives caviar an ambient shelf life. This is not something we recommend as pasteurisation takes away the subtlety of the product.
Considered as the King of caviar, Beluga is rare because it takes 12 years to produces its eggs. It commands a very high price, often three times the price of all other caviar. Steely grey in colour, it’s generally the largest egg with notes of walnuts and cream and hints of both the sea and finest quality salt.
Oscietra sturgeon produce their eggs after 8 years. With a beautiful golden/brown colour, they have a nutty, mellow taste, which develops into a buttery sweetness, similar to lobster. Historically the egg is smaller than Beluga, but with increased farming, the egg size can sometimes be almost as large as its mighty cousin.
Historically, when wild caviar was available, Golden Oscietra was always referred to as “The Shah’s Caviar”. This rare egg is rich, creamy and has a beautiful light gold colour. It is often bigger than darker egg Oscietra.
This Siberian sturgeon is 5-6 years old when it produces its eggs. It has a more intense mackerel-like flavour than Oscietra, often with long hazelnut notes and a colour ranging from dark grey to ebony. This sturgeon is farmed far more than any other as it produces its eggs relatively quickly.
Aquitaine produces the eggs after 5 years. It has a nutty sea taste with low acidity, and ranges from a steely grey colour, similar to Sevruga, to jet black. Aquitaine, like our Siberian Sturgeon, is also from a Baerii sturgeon but is exclusively farmed in France.
This is a hybrid of the Acipenser Schrenckii and Acipenser Dauricus. The caviar from China has a large sized egg with delicate but intense almond cream flavour. Sometimes, these eggs can be remarkably golden in colour, but more commonly are a vibrant walnut brown to olive green hue.
A hybrid caviar of Oscietra and Siberian Sturgeon, Platinum has fresh and intense flavour, often with long nutty notes and a buttery undertone and a colour ranging from dark grey to ebony. This is one of the least expensive caviars but incredibly popular, with a very large egg.
Sevruga tastes of the sea. It is often the preferred choice for caviar dealers around the world because of its resemblance to wild caviar. This small, grey egg is packed with a delicious salty flavour that lingers, often more than other caviars.
A Brief History of Caviar
The word ‘caviar’ is a Persian term that means ‘cake of strength’. It’s a common assumption that the Russians began extracting and consuming caviar, when it was actually the Persians in the 16th century. They believed it had healing properties. In the 18th century, caviar was regarded as the food of the poor until royal chefs introduced Russian Tsars and nobility to it. This set-in motion the demand for caviar as a delicacy – until 2008, when wild sturgeon fishing was banned under the Bern Convention, an international agreement to protect animals and the environment. Since then, all legally produced caviar has come from sturgeon farms.
Caviar is the food of the Gods and an experience never forgotten…
So, come on, feel the Noizé:
TOM PARKER BOWLES enjoys a lunch of scallops and partridge at this discreet London restaurant. By Tom Parker Bowles For The Mail On Sunday
Noizé 39 Whitfield Street London, W1T 2SF
Two weeks into January and I’ve yet to talk about culinary trends, and my prescient predictions for the thrilling year ahead. I’ve let you down. Hell, I’ve let myself down. I’m sorry, really I am. Because I know how much you all care about the trite and transient, the flash-in-the-pans and the one-day-wonders, the dull, ditzy and dumb. Because to suggest a vegan diet, say, or probiotics, prebiotics or sushi-filled bloody doughnut (douchi – I kid you not), will be in fashion means, by its very fickle nature, that it will fall from grace mere moments after. A brief suckle on Mammon’s trendy teat, before an eternity of despair, humiliation and self-hate, consigned to the deepest, darkest depths of the shop-soiled discount dungeon. So rather than bore you with some half-witted hot air about nut milk and radical plant proteins (be still my rumbling gut), how about a few simple restaurant requests? Rooms, comfortable, well-lit rooms with decent acoustics, rooms in which one wants to linger – with kitchens that cook food, good food, that you actually want to eat. Served by warm, charming, professional staff who are decently paid and properly looked after. Meaning the tip, or service charge, is theirs, and theirs alone.
Oh, and if they could please write down my order, however brilliant their memory may be, I’d be eternally grateful. Prices don’t have to be dirt cheap, but they must reflect value. And please, when it comes to wine lists, don’t take the Michael. Which brings me neatly on to Noizé, a small, discreet restaurant north of Oxford Street that opened last year with the minimum of fuss. In fact, the first time I heard of its existence was when Fay Maschler, the empress of eating out, whispered of its wonders while we were filming something for the telly. And trust me, that’s a tip from the top. Mathieu Germond is the man behind it, a much-lauded veteran of Pied à Terre, where he was both sommelier and general manager. The head chef, Ed Dutton, is another who did time at Pied à Terre, and he’s there for all to see, behind an immaculate wall of glass, in a quiet, calm, industrious kitchen.
I’m lunching with my friend Laura, the queen of caviar and much else besides, and she likes the place immediately. So do I, as this is a room made for eating. Thick, pristine linen tablecloths, solid cutlery and elegant glasses. There’s room to stretch, and gossip, without fear of being overheard. Next door, a bottle is opened and poured. They’re not fans. Without so much as wrinkle of his brow, Germond whisks it away and brings them something else. Where he leads, his staff follow. Service here is magnifique. As is the food. Gougères, light and airy as my New Year’s resolutions, are filled with warmly oozing cheddar. They’re better than the ones at The Waterside. And, dare I say it, better even than Simon Hopkinson’s wonders. Pig beignets are rather more strident, deep- fried and beautifully bosky. While chicken liver pâté, piped artfully on to fingers of toast, and sat under a scattering of tart grapes, has a truly regal richness. My scallop ceviche is a very different beast from the Peruvian original, though both are obsessed with the freshness of their fish. But while the South American version is fierce with chilli and salt, at Noizé it’s softer and more fragrant. Thanks, in part, to the use of kaffir lime, less strident than its conventional cousin. Ribbons of fennel are tangled on top, along with cool balls of cucumber. It’s properly seasoned too. Laura’s fois gras is as filthily lascivious as it should be, beautifully cooked and quivering atop a chewy tarte tatin. A woman wise in the ways of engorged liver, she nods her approval. Lots of sweat and elbow grease for a few mouthfuls that are both big-flavoured and elegantly refined, Tom Parker-Bowles writes +3 Lots of sweat and elbow grease for a few mouthfuls that are both big-flavoured and elegantly refined, Tom Parker-Bowles writes Partridge arrives as two burnished breasts, the skin both crisp and chewy, sat atop a pile of celeriac and translucent slices of apple, with the most intense and reduced veal jus poured on top. Served with peerless pommes dauphinoise, this is old-fashioned haute French cooking at its best, the sort that reminds one why they once ruled the culinary roost. Lots of sweat and elbow grease for a few mouthfuls that are both big-flavoured and elegantly refined.
Laura eats seabass, still translucent in the middle, with crisp skin and salsify, and a bold but surprisingly delicate red wine sauce. More culinary classicism, lovingly wrought. Apple tarte fine, for pudding. Like everything else at Noizé, there’s poise and precision and understated art, a respect for tradition, without being boorishly bound to it. We drink a bottle of wonderful Riesling. And finish with a glass of Poire William, chilled, of course.
With the minimum of fuss, and maximum of charm, Noizé gets it just right.
So my predictions for 2018?
More Noizé. Please.
About £40 per head