Sunday, July 25, 2010

Tears Before Suppertime

Days 37

Then: 15 stone 5 pounds (215 lbs)
Now: 14 stone 4 pounds (200 lbs)

Yesterday I revealed exclusive details of my YuKan diet. In it I confessed that weekends operate on slightly different rules than weekdays, particularly on Saturday nights.

This week, our idea of a date night was to go to the cinema to see Toy Story 3. Like all grown men, apparently, I blubbed incoherently into my popcorn throughout the last five minutes. It was too embarrassing to repeat the story here, but if you want to have a laugh at my expense, I have bared all on my latest Blog From The North.

We sought solace, red-eyed, in a local restaurant called Blackfriars. It’s probably the first really good English food we’ve had in the north east since we moved here three and a half years ago. They make great claims about it being “farm to table”: in other words, all their produce is locally grown - they have a map of the farms that supply them on every table.

That’s all very well if the chef can cook. Almost every restaurant in the region makes similar claims: but as far as I can make out almost none of their chefs know how to handle their ingredients. The food comes out as mangled and tasteless as if it had travelled from Brighton.

Not so the team at Blackfriars. It was, quite simply (and I’m aware this sounds like a terrible foody cliché) intelligently, competently and sensitively prepared with outstandingly fresh ingredients. I had queen scallops and the freshest sea bass (they called it rock bass, but I thought that only came from North American lakes); Jo had chicken with morels in a superb broth. Then we both had puddings – yes, puddings. Oh, and a huge Super-Tuscan red from Villa Antinori. That was to get over the movie.

And still only a pound added by the morning.

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