NEIL'S RECIPES: WARM STRAWBERRIES, VANILLA, ORANGE AND CRÈME FRAÎCHE

by Cafe St Honoré in


“This is a great way to use up old berries; almost a compote but not quite. Take the chill off the fruit, add a shaving of orange peel, vanilla seeds, a kick of sugar and a splash of Grand Mariner. The dollop of crème fraîche melts into the warm fruit and creates a delicious, rich and sweet berry sauce. Simple and elegant.”

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Serves 2

Prep time: 10 minutes; cooking time: 3 minutes

INGREDIENTS

12 strawberries

1 tablespoon caster sugar

1 tablespoon Grand Mariner

2 thumb-sized pieces of orange peel

1/3 vanilla pod, seeds scraped and pod retained

2 big dollops of crème fraîche

2 sprigs of mint, optional

METHOD

Give the strawberries a gentle wash under a tap, then remove their husks. Cut the bigger ones in half and leave any smaller ones whole.

Place them in a pot with the Grand Marnier and put on a moderate heat. Add the sugar as the liquid comes to the boil, then add the vanilla seeds, vanilla pod and the orange peel.

Stir gently in the pot, and be careful it doesn’t get too hot. Make sure the vanilla seeds are distributed by pressing them with the back of a spoon. After a minute or two, once everything is warm, spoon the berries and juice into a bowl.

Serve with the orange peel, vanilla pod and garnish with a sprig of mint, and a big dollop of crème fraîche.


MEET THE TEAM: ANDREW MCKENZIE

by Cafe St Honoré in


Discover what makes our team tick in the third of our series of interviews with our staff. It’s time to meet our chef de partie Andrew. Andrew is from Edinburgh and has been with us since August 2018.

Our chef de partie, Andrew

Our chef de partie, Andrew

What does your job entail? 

Working on the starter section, doing prep, ordering and organising, logging fridge temperatures, and most importantly, cooking the staff meals ensuring everyone gets a good plate of food twice a day.

What’s the favourite part of your job? 

I love butchery. Finding different cuts from different animals. Cafe is a brilliant place to learn butchery as we buy in whole carcasses and game birds in season.

What’s special about Cafe St Honoré? 

It’s a small team and working here has a real family feel. You can talk to anyone about anything. It’s a nice place to work and feel valued as an integral part of the team.

What do you like to cook at home?

I have an Italian family heritage so I love making, cooking and eating all sorts of pasta. I especially like making osso buco and home-made pizza. I have a starter for making sourdough at home and enjoy baking bread on my days off.

What’s your favourite dish at Cafe?

I’m a huge steak fan. At Cafe we have flat iron steak on a lot and it’s incredible! I like it with Béarnaise, chips and a salad. Absolutely classic.

Where do you eat out in Edinburgh?

Ting Thai Caravan is awesome at lunch time with friends - and very reasonably priced. I also like The Outsider, and El Cartel is always a favourite for that authentic Mexican taste!

What are your plans for the future?

There is so much to learn here at Cafe and I can’t wait to work more on the pastry and sauce sections, and cooking main courses. I’m still relatively new to cooking after completing a course at the Edinburgh New Town cookery school, but I just love it. Neil and Joe are brilliant at training and teaching. I’m pretty lucky to be here.


PICKLING LIQUID IN FOUR EASY STEPS

by Cafe St Honoré in


This really simple method for preserving veg is a must at this time of year when there’s often just too much good stuff to eat. It’s the perfect way to store beetroots (cook, peel and quarter them first), shavings of carrots and courgettes, blanched onion slices, cauliflower florets, sliced radishes, green beans - the list goes on! You’ll also have a lovely display of colourful veg in your kitchen to admire, and of course - to eat!

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STEP ONE

Gather your ingredients: 150ml water, 150ml vinegar, 150g sugar, a teaspoon of salt plus herbs and spices like peppercorns, star anise, thyme, bay leaves, mustard seeds. Experiment!

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STEP TWO

Add all the ingredients to a pan and bring to the boil.

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STEP THREE

Boil until all the sugar has dissolved.

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STEP FOUR

Pour into a clean jar. No need to wait until it’s cooled down to add the veg. If storing out of the fridge, sterilise the jar first.



YOUNG CHEF OF THE YEAR

by Cafe St Honoré in


We're all very chuffed that Ewan Jones has made the the shortlist for 'Young Chef of the Year' at this year's CIS Excellence Awards.

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Ewan made his debut at Cafe St Honoré 6 years ago - when he was just 16. Even at that early stage, Cafe’s chef director Neil Forbes could see his potential. He is hard-working, willing to learn and is blessed with a great sense of humour.

Neil wrote a blog featuring Ewan’s story for the Sustainable Restaurant Association - read it here.

He has progressed through all sections with flair and can now run a busy service. He relishes being left to run the kitchen and is very popular amongst the team.

Ewan is a conscientious and reliable young man - quiet but keen. He has developed skills of a very high standard and is now instrumental in keeping the restaurant operating 7 days a week.

He has also learned great life skills and is an inspiration to all the chefs that work with him. At just 22 he is already a very accomplished chef.

We hope Ewan inspires young people to nurture a career in the kitchen!


MEET THE TEAM: JUSTINA SUCHOCKAITE

by Cafe St Honoré in


Discover what makes our team tick in the second of our new series of interviews with our staff. It’s time to meet our assistant manager Justina. Originally from Lithuania, Justina has been with us since June 2017. 

Our assistant manager, Justina

Our assistant manager, Justina

What does your job entail? 

I take care of the day-to-day operations at Café - that involves making an action plan for the day, ensuring the restaurant is ready for each service, and that the staff are well briefed. Even a small restaurant like Cafe has so many ‘moving pieces’, keeping everything organised and moving smoothly is of paramount importance.

What’s the favourite part of your job? 

The favourite part of my job has got to be the interaction with people - both the guests and my colleagues. We are very lucky to have so many great regular patrons and that in turn makes it a great place to work. We seem to also attract great staff, so maybe just coming to work is my favorite part of the job!

What’s special about Cafe St Honoré? 

Cafe is unique in so many ways but I would have to say the one thing that makes it really special is that it has such a legacy. There are so few places that have been open for as long as Cafe and, because of that, there are so many stories to be told and to hear about the restaurant. 

What do you like to cook at home?

I did not cook much at home at all before working here, but I am definitely way more interested in food now. I do not have a staple dish as such. I normally buy seasonal vegetables from my local farmers’ market and start experimenting. I do put cheese on everything though. 

Where do you eat out in Edinburgh?

There are so many great places to eat in Edinburgh, but I always chose to dine at Cafe if there is a special occasion. 


lemon posset in six easy steps

by Cafe St Honoré in


It’s a classic, and one we serve a lot at Cafe. It’s creamy texture works brilliantly well with a zing of citrus. And what’s even better, you can make it very easily at home and keep in the fridge until required. Batch cooking fans take note! Keep scrolling for Neil’s six easy steps…

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STEP ONE

Gather everything you need. 900ml double cream, 225g unrefined caster sugar, 2 organic lemons and 10 small glasses.

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STEP TWO

Bring the cream and sugar to the boil slowly in a thick-bottomed pan. Boil for 3 minutes.

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STEP THREE

Add the juice and zest of the lemons. Infuse for 5 minutes.

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STEP FOUR

Pass through a fine sieve into a jug, then divide between the glasses.

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STEP FIVE

Refrigerate until set.

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STEP SIX

Garnish with a new season strawberry and a dusting of icing sugar. Perfect served with a nice piece of shortbread.