Blood Orange and Fennel Salad

Every year, my boyfriend and I explore a new area of Italy. So far we’ve been to Turin, Sicily, Bologna and around Tuscany. Of course food is a big part of our adventures. We like to pick an apartment that’s within walking distance to a local market to buy fresh fruit, vegetables and fish to cook with… as well as discovering local restaurants and eateries to inspire us.

One of my favourite memories is a delightful meal we had by candlelight somewhere on the island of Ortigia. A group of young buskers sang Stand Up nearby, everyone was merry on local wine, and I had my first taste of the magic combination that is blood orange with fennel. So when I spotted these golden beauties in Borough Market recently, I immediately wanted to recreate the recipe to bring back those memories of our Sicilian summer.

2 blood oranges
½ bulb fennel
Olive oil
Lemon juice
½ tsp fennel seeds

Carefully cut off the skin around each blood orange, and slice finely. Also slice half a bulb of fennel and retain the fronds for garnish. Toss together and dress with a drizzle of olive oil, a dash of lemon juice, ½ tsp of fennel seeds and a pinch of salt and pepper. You can also add more citrus to the salad – a grapefruit would work well.

Turkish Eggs (Cilbir)

I first tried this breakfast dish at Kopapa in Covent Garden, which still remains my favourite version of Turkish eggs… of course, I’ve never actually been to Turkey so that could change! Today I gave the recipe a go. Remember to use fresh eggs to poach – my favourite are the Waitrose “intelligent eating” ones enriched with omega-3 for their beautiful orange yolks.

1 clove of garlic
4 tbsp strained yoghurt
1 tbsp salted butter
½ tsp smoked paprika
2 fresh eggs
2 slices of sourdough
Olive oil

Mince one clove of garlic very finely, then add a pinch of salt and 4 tbsp of strained yoghurt. Mix and dollop into the centre of a bowl. In a saucepan on a low heat, melt 1 tbsp of salted butter with ½ tsp smoked paprika. Remove from heat once melted, pour through a fine sieve and leave to cool for a few minutes. Meanwhile, poach two eggs then drain on a kitchen towel.

Toast a few slices of sourdough and drizzle with some olive oil. Spoon the paprika butter all around the yoghurt in the bowl, and gently place the poached eggs on top. Chop and scatter some parsley to garnish.

Restaurant Höst in Copenhagen

Disclosure: I was invited by Visit Denmark.

I was honoured to be invited for a weekend in Copenhagen with Visit Denmark. This city has been high on my travel wish-list for years, and it did not disappoint. There’s a Danish word ‘hygge’ that encompasses the feeling of good company, cosiness and contentedness. Our whole trip was full of hygge, no part more so than our dinner at Höst, an incredible New Nordic restaurant. The dishes were seasonal and innovative; and the decor was so incredible that we actually returned the next day just to photograph it in natural light!

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