Your Last Mouthful

Cardiff based food blog

Hangfire Smokehouse- Good Food Doesn’t Have To Be Posh

Why have I waited so long to try Hangfire Smokehouse!

I’ve read the reviews, I’ve watched them trending on Twitter, I even used to live nearby when they were at The Canadian for goodness sake. Somehow though, every time we tried to go, something happened. Broken bones, baby making an early appearance, it was like we were cursed.

Finally, last week, we made it! We pulled up to the Lansdowne Pub at 7.30pm and the place was heaving! We didn’t think we’d get a seat but we were directed by a friendly cowboy to a perfect little table for two in the window.

I knew from that second that I was going to love it. Music was playing, people were chatting loudly, the Hangfire girls were making friends with everyone they passed and everyone was licking their fingers.

Now I love my fine dining but sometimes you can’t beat getting your hands in and getting covered in sauce. Good food doesn’t have to be posh and Hangfire Smokehouse certainly prove that. With their latest home currently at the Lansdowne Pub in Canton on a Thursday and Friday night, Hangfire Smokehouse have made a name for themselves with their authentic American BBQ pop up. After a 6 month stint in America, they have certainly picked up some BBQ knowledge and are producing some really exciting dishes.

After much debating (because we wanted everything) we opted for St Louis pork spares and 12 hour smoked beef brisket. Each meat came with 2 sides so we ordered all 4 between us; BBQ beans, maque choux fries, slaw and etouffee.

Despite the crowds the food arrived in 20 minutes delivered on a tray with the sides in cardboard pots. We both dug into the ribs and immediately wish we’d ordered extra. They were some of the best ribs I’ve ever had. So tender, the meat fell away from the bone and the flavouring was delicious. The accompanying sauces were good too but I prefer to taste the meat so I saved them for the chips.

Pork ribs

The Brisket was good too. We’d actually had brisket at home the night before and there was no comparison. It was just so tender served on Texas Toast which was greasy and garlicky.

brisket

We couldn’t leave without a slice of Pecan pie made by the talented Eira of Inner City Pickle. It was fantastic and at just £3.50, seriously good value.

Pecan pie

Hangfire Smokehouse was a hit with me as I fully expected it to be. I will most definitely be back. The Lansdowne is a great venue too, we were really impressed. Everyone was clearly loving what they were doing. It’s great to see people so excited and passionate about their food. There was a real buzz. I love a good casual dining experience with great food and that is exactly what Hangfire Smokehouse are doing. Fantastic!

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KL Canalog- From Kuala Lumpur to Wellfield Road

KL Canolog deli

Wellfield Road is definitely the place to be if you are looking for a cafe or coffee shop. Endless options for cake, sandwiches and coffee but my favourite little place offers something quite different to the rest. Modest, understated and welcoming, KL Canolog is an Asian deli and Malaysian cafe serving up simple but delicious food.

It’s all very inviting with the deli at the front and a very homely cafe put together with simple furniture and artwork on the wall that you might find in your kitchen at home. The menu on offer matches the interior. Simple, home cooked Malaysian food. Nothing fancy, just very authentic and delicious.

I went for the Nasi Lemak with Beef Rendang because it’s something I had when I was in Malaysia a few years ago. It was just as I remembered, even down to the way it was presented. Beautiful soft meat served with rice, dried salty anchovies, peanuts and a boiled egg. At just £8.70 it was both cheap and filling.

KL Canolog

To accompany my lunch I had a mint tea and Mr V had a Kopi Tarik (a sweet and milky Malaysian coffee). The coffee was especially good.

Coming up to closing time, we thought we’d take away some cake. We opted for a coconut cake and a Pandan sponge. This was not before raiding the deli where I picked up some cardamom essence and my favourite Pocky.

I will definitely be going back to KL Canolog. The owners are so friendly and welcoming. We felt right at home. We were even given a recipe for a dish we tried in Indonesia. I definitely recommend it as an alternative to a Panini and coffee in one of its larger chain neighbours.

My Homage to The Perfect Patisserie

So close to my idea of patisserie perfection, Cocorico’s take on a Religieuse is everything I want from a sweet treat. A French favourite of choux buns traditionally filled with creme patisserie and covered in chocolate ganache, has been transformed with delicious violet flavours.

Light choux pastry filled with smooth creamy floral creme patisserie topped with dried violets. Absolutely delicious. I’ve been begging for this to make a return for a long while and here it is. All I need now is the return of their pineapple and coconut tart and I will be very fat!

violet religieuse

My Japanese Kit Kat Obsession- Adult Sweetness

Something else I’ve learned about Japanese Kit Kats is they tend to repeat flavours but with a slight variation. As far as I can see they have done this with the Adult Sweetness editions. The range is aimed at an adult palette and so isn’t as sweet as other Kit Kats. My source this time was Ebay and I tried Passion Fruit (Adult Sweetness), Green Tea (Adult Sweetness) and Shinshu Apple.

Passion Fruit (Adult Sweetness)

Passion fruit adult sweetness

This one is very sweet. So much for adult sweetness! I think I would feel quite sick if it was any sweeter. It has a strong flavour coming from the creme in between the layers of wafer. It’s yellow in colour and I think it’s white chocolate but I can’t be sure.

Matcha Green Tea (Adult Sweetness)

Green tea adult sweetness

I’ve written about Matcha Green Tea flavour already. This Adult Sweetness version was worse if anything. At least the sweetness of the last one was masked a bit by the sugar. Yuck!

Shinshu Apple

Shinshu Apple Kit Kat

After the green tea Kit Kat this one was very refreshing. It has a mild apple flavour which goes well with the milk chocolate. Definitely the best of the three.

You can read more about my new obsession here:

My Japanese Kit Kat Obsession- Just the beginning!

My Japanese Kit Kat Obsession- Part II

Cardiff Hit List- March 2014

Having been off the scene for a while, what with having a baby and all, it appears I have a lot to catch up on. It’s great to see that Cardiff is still a viable place to start a new food business and the area seems to be thriving. James Sommerin obviously thinks so with his new restaurant The Esplanade set to open soon in Penarth. Very excited about that!

With so many new places and a few oldies that I still haven’t managed to get around to yet, I thought I’d put together a hit list so I have something to aim for.

In no particular order….

Hang Fire Smokehouse– I say ‘in no particular order’ but this is definitely at the top of my list and has been for ages. I know it isn’t new but every time I have planned to give it a try something has come up. I WILL be tasting Hang Fire Smokehouse as soon as possible.

Kimchi– I love Korean food so I’m really excited by the opening of this little restaurant on Cowbridge Road East. It has had some great reviews so far despite not even having a website.

The Discovery– The next installment in Knife and Fork Food’s little empire. The Discovery opens this week. I can’t make the opening but I hope to go along and check it out very soon.

Urban Tap House– A bar devoted to craft beer and burgers? Say no more.

Mission Burrito– Cardiff blogger Gourmet Gorro has got me excited about this one. It may be a chain but it’s a small one and burritos are definitely a welcome addition to the Cardiff lunch scene.

The Deck– Now this isn’t new and I can’t believe I still haven’t been! I reviewed Love Peace and Cupcake a while back but I haven’t been to The Deck since their take over and I really really must go!

I’d love to hear any recommendations you have too.

Foodie Penpals- February 2014

For my second ever foodie penpal pairing I was sent a very interesting box from Rachel Carr, the lady behind the blog Lime Time. Rachel sent me a comprehensive list of questions to find out what I liked and as a result I received these little gems!

Foodie Penpals feb 14

1. Dried limes- I said I liked Middle Eastern food and these are an essential ingredient for many dishes. Rachel used to live there so she should know!

2. Lavendar drops- Picked because I like floral flavours. These were delicious. I say were because I ate them in one sitting while I was waiting for dinner to cook- ops!

3. Lancashire sauce crisps- This brand is fairly local to Rachel.

4. Chocolate sardines- because every box needs a little chocolate!

5. A ginger beer plant- I told Rachel I like things that are a bit different. I haven’t tried this yet but I’m intrigued. It is basically a pack of yeast and sugar which you need to feed with ground ginger for a week then you add lemon and water. I definitely haven’t seen one before.

6. Taste 5 Umani paste- Chosen because I like Asian flavours. I’ve read a lot about this so I have high hopes.

7. Moroccan crackers- This was because I said I liked Moroccan food. Great with a glass of red wine!

All in all a really lovely thoughtful box. I have to say I’m loving foodie penpals. This month I sent my box to Sofie in Sweden.

If you would like to know more about Foodie Penpals in the UK and Europe, have a look here.

If you would like to know more about Foodie Penpals in the US and Canada, have a look at The Lean Green Bean.

To The Door- March 2014

Thanks to everyone who has sent me products this month and last. Here is a run down of what I have received.

Teapigs Matcha Green Tea

I am a fan of Teapigs and this is an attractive little product. Easy to make and it has slimming properties apparently. Always grateful for a Teapig product to add to my tea collection.

Tea Pigs Matcha Green Tea

Nakd ‘Fancy a Break’ box

I was sent a lovely little gift box from Nakd containing hand cream, a mug and tea bags and a bag of Chocolate Orange Fruit and Nut Bits. The ‘Bits’ were very tasty and a more health conscious snack than chocolate (although I won’t be giving up chocolate…)

Nakd Take a break box

Matcha Green Tea Kit Kats

Continuing with the Matcha Green Tea theme…These were sent by a friend who had been on a business trip to Japan. You can read about them here.

Matcha Green Tea Kit Kat

Breast is Best! But in a Creme Caramel?!

If you’ve ever breast-fed your baby you may or may not have been surprised by the amount of people asking ‘have you tried it?’ ‘what does it taste like’ , even on one occasion ‘can I try some?!’. Although most people would probably shy away if they were offered a taste, it did get me thinking, is there a market for breast milk products?

The answer bizarrely is yes! Scarily it turns out it’s more popular than I was anticipating and there’s even a breast milk cook book, internet forums and a Facebook page sharing breast milk recipes. Very odd indeed!

In early 2011, Icecreamists invented the ‘Baby Gaga’. An ice cream made from breast milk, vanilla and lemon zest. The Covent Garden based ice cream parlour paid women to donate expressed breast milk which was served in ice cream form by a waitress dressed as a ‘baby gaga’. Although proving very popular (especially amongst women) much controversy ensued including a legal battle with Lady Gaga over the name.

Before the Icecreamists, New York chef Daniel Angerer caused a commotion by creating breast milk cheese using his wife’s milk. If you would like the recipe, he has posted it on his blog!

A few searches on google has bought up many blogs with recipes for breast milk products from cupcakes, to milkshakes to pies.

So in the interest of creativity, I have taken inspiration for my own breast milk dessert. I haven’t actually made this I have to stress and I find the idea quite bizarre. I’m not sure I would like to share my breast milk with dinner guests but if you’re going to make anything with breast milk, surely a sweet crème caramel without all the sugar is as good an option as any?

Take any crème caramel recipe e.g. this one from BBC Good Food and substitute the milk for breast milk. You can leave out the sugar because breast milk is sweet. Healthier too! Enjoy!

Personally, I will only be sharing my breast milk with my baby….

Munchesters – Another Triumpth for Anand George

,unch at Munchesters

With Purple Poppadom being a firm favourite of mine, I was very excited to hear about chef and owner Anand George’s new venture, coffee shop and lunch-time take away Munchesters.

Munchesters aims to bring gourmet food to food on the go. With lunch time options including deli wraps, fresh salads, soups and Kerala stews, they definitely stand out from neighbouring establishments in my opinion. The wraps are made with slow cooked meat steeped in Indian inspired flavours. I have tried a few on various occasions with my favourite being the Beef Island Paradise Wrap (slow cooked beef with coconut and red cabbage) which was so tender and flavoursome.

Beef Island Paradise Wrap

The salads are interesting and exciting with options like Beetroot Carnival (with spiced peanuts, orange and parsley). There are also daily soup options and sandwiches.

The coffee shop looks like a take away sandwich bar but you can eat in at one of the tables upstairs. There is a good selection of cakes and pastries and hot and cold drinks.

For me, with so many lunch time options Munchesters really stands out. Looking in from the street outside you could be forgiven for thinking it just another sandwich bar but it’s so much more than that. If you’re looking for lunch on the go, you will get more than your average choice of sandwich or salad. The prices are competitive too, especially for the quality on offer.

My Japanese Kit Kat Obsession- A Gift of Matcha Green Tea

A friend of ours has just returned from a business trip to Japan and look what he kindly sent us. To me this is very exciting. My first multi pack of Japanese Kit Kats and it’s Matcha Green Tea flavour. How very Japanese! Unfortunately it is quite revolting…

Matcha Green Tea

Green in colour, you can smell the tea as you unwrap it. I thought I would love it but I couldn’t finish it. It is truly disgusting! I would describe it as musty with a fishy quality. The flavour really doesn’t go with chocolate. Imagine dunking your chocolate hob nob in green tea. Not the best flavour combination. It tastes like feet!

You can read more about my new obsession here:

My Japanese Kit Kat Obsession- Just the beginning!

My Japanese Kit Kat Obsession- Part II

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