Friday, 24 June 2011

Beyond Sushi... discover Osaka

Osaka has a style and charisma unlike anywhere else in Japan. The country’s third-largest city can’t compete with Tokyo for scale; it doesn’t have the capital’s vast range of bars, clubs and restaurants. And nearby Kyoto, with its famously quaint temples, gardens and tea houses, beats it for classic Japanese charm.

But Osaka more than makes up for that with its food scene—considered by many to be the most exciting in Japan—its lively nightlife and its friendly people. Osakans are known as great talkers, and many of Japan’s top comedians come from the city.

The 2011 Michelin guide gives three Osaka restaurants the highest rating of three stars. Read more

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Curry is good for your sex life... how to really spice up your life!

Helping yourself to a serving of curry might not be the most obvious way to boost your sex life.

But a study by Australian researchers claims that it could be just the thing, as the herb fenugreek has been shown to improve sexual appetite.

In a six-week study, men who took an extract of the herb, commonly used in curries, reported a 28 per cent increase in sexual arousal.

And the good news is that just about every other herb or spice used in the spicy meal has similar health-giving properties. Here's a look at how to spice up your life.


Garlic has anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-viral properties, which is why it's a common ingredient in traditional medicine. It also acts as a stimulant, giving a natural energy release.

Read more

Thursday, 16 June 2011

Can ordinary mortals ever experience the subtleties of flavour that the world's top chefs do?

I have always hated cabbage. Whether it's down to the overcooked sludge served up at school, or the smell of it drifting from the dinner hall, it is one of the few foods that I genuinely dislike. And yet here I am, eating not only cabbage, but an entire plate of cabbage-related vegetables at the Michelin-starred Restaurant Sat Bains with Rooms in Nottingham.

I am here in a bid to expand my palate and educate my tastebuds, and, rather fortuitously, Sat Bains has decided to present me with cabbage. But this cabbage is delicious, cooked down to a cream, and piled high with contrasting textures of burnt onion ash, braised turnips, raw broccoli stalks in lemon vinaigrette, radish and puréed broccoli, all brought together with a luxurious smoked hollandaise.