Sheinkin Fattoush with an Aromatic Green Olive and Za’atar Tapenade

When I used to work there, Sheinkin was one of the coolest streets in Tel Aviv. It was where the beautiful people came to meet with friends, talk about life, listen to music, drink coffee in one of the myriad café-bars and to shop the funky independents (I have a treasure chest bursting with glittering Michal Negrin…

Quartieri Spagnoli Aubergine Parmigiana (Melanzane alla Parmigiana)

Deep in the heart of of the Quartieri Spagnoli – the Spanish Quarter – in the centre of Naples sits a tiny family-run restaurant called Hosteria Toledo. It’s one of our favourites and our go-to place when we arrive in (and leave) this glorious chaotic city. The family are justifiably proud of their long-held faith in…

Essaouira Couscous with Saffron, Mint and Lemon

Imagine a sophisticated salon lined with intricate Moroccan tiles and finely carved white plaster; imagine the aromas of spices, incense and complex tagines; imagine literally dozens of traditional lanterns filled with flickering candles and the warmth of a Moroccan welcome all wrapped up with a flounce of Parisian glamour. You have just entered Essaouira, an authentic…

Kyrenia Griddled Halloumi, Tomato & Pomegranate Salad

This beautiful little dish – often served as part of a Levantine mezze table – is outrageously easy to make. It’s bright, it’s salty, it’s a little bit sweet and a little bit sour so it’s the perfect accompaniment to a creamy, lemony and garlicky hummus, slivers of tangy feta cheese and generous chunks of…

Turkish Ezme Salad

Eager to shake off the cold of an early spring evening, we literally fell through the doorway of Asmalı Cavit, a treasured wooden-fronted traditional meyhane (tavern) in the centre of Pera in Istanbul. Here, the raki flows like the waters of the glittering Bosphorus; never ending and always a sight to behold. Our friends are known to the…

Aya Yorgi Fasulye Piyaz (Turkish Bean Salad)

An early morning walk through the dusty streets of Istanbul down to the banks of the Bosphorus, a long and choppy crossing over the Sea of Marmara, a death-defying ride on a horse-pulled phaeton (there are no cars on Büyükada, the largest of the Princes Islands, just mad horsemen) followed by a hot and steamy mile-long climb…

Umbrian Rocket & Walnut Pesto

‘When we first started cooking, dishes like lasagne and cannelloni were treated with suspicion. Few people knew what to expect. Thirty years ago these dishes were virtually unknown to the British population; only a few who had travelled to Italy had tried them. These dishes always had to be described in great detail before people…

Neapolitan Buffalo Mozzarella with Zucchini alla Scapece and Borlotti Beans

‘Italian food is all about the ingredients, and it’s not fussy and it’s not fancy‘, so says Wolfgang Puck and this classic dish of Naples is a testimony to that. Zucchini alla Scapece is a zesty summer salad which, whenever I taste it, immediately transports me back to long lazy lunches sitting around a table heaving with…

Greek Wild Thyme & Fragrant Herb Honey Polenta Cake

Authentic Greek honey is widely recognised as being a natural product of world-class quality; this is because it’s made by bees that feed upon the abundant, rich and aromatic Greek flora which includes over 850 species found nowhere else in the world. In actual fact, Greece is a country with the richest flora in the Mediterranean basin with…

Bar Douro, London

This week, just a day after we returned from Istanbul, I travelled up to London to do some research and to source new ingredients. It turns out that Wednesday was the hottest June day on record since 1976 when, as a young girl, I lazed about all summer on the lawn reading Françoise Sagan novels…