A Lot of Meat at The Edinburgh School of Food & Wine

On Sunday I was cooking burgers at the Jubilee street party. Been up to much this week? enquired a friend. Yes indeed, I replied. Five days cutting up dead animals. It’s not the most normal of replies, and attracted the attention of a good few folk. More details? Certainly. Ash MacMillan A couple of months ago, I wrote about…

Read More

Do You Know The Michelin Man?

No one does, of course. These faceless men and women who selflessly eat out anonymously in the world’s finest establishments, paying their bill at the end and leaving without comment. But what is Michelin all about? The idea for this piece came about from a conversation over dinner. In a Michelin starred restaurant, as it…

Read More

The Food Producers – Michael Kaplan, Great British Vermouth

Michael Kaplan The supermarket most local to me sits just behind Edinburgh’s Murrayfield Stadium. Next to it is an industrial plant, well protected with security cameras and razor wire. This is not, as you might assume, due to its proximity to Gorgie and Tynecastle Stadium. The principal reason is that they, quite legally, manufacture morphine.…

Read More

Cookery Classes? Beware of Little White Haired Ladies

Lest my good pals Nyssa, Ash and Dereick of the Edinburgh School of Food & Wine are concerned, allow me to allay their fears. Going to a cookery class is usually a fun thing to do. Read recent articles for details. NOT Fiona G Lines Written Pre Class Today, I speak from the other side…

Read More

Diets: The Wee Fat Lawyer Revisited

In June and July we published 15 articles aimed at helping you to lose weight and keep it off. On The Side featured, in five instalments, The Wee Fat Lawyer’s Diet Book. For the first time ever, Tom Cooks! had two columns a week, The Wee Fat Lawyer’s A – Z of Food and Recipes from The Wee…

Read More

Our Daily Bread at The Edinburgh School of Food & Wine

The plea to the Almighty to give us this day our daily bread is probably the most common prayer in the Christian world. After two days at the Edinburgh School of Food & Wine, I found myself with a fortnight’s worth, and did wonder if I had overdone things a bit. I have been making…

Read More

Tom Eats! With The Master Chefs

It’s early April. Another batch of you with 31 March year ends will have hung up your gowns, spreadsheets, laptops or whatevers and joined the happy band. The band, that is, of the wastrels, parasites on society, to wit the retired. So let me tell you how it is, by relating something which happened to…

Read More

The Food Retailers: Dougie Bell of Lupe Pintos Deli

Meet Dougie Bell for the first time, and you immediately notice two things. The first is the trademark pork pie hat, worn at all times. The second is the permanent twinkle (albeit not in my truly dreadful photos.) You just know at first encounter that this has not been an ordinary life. Two of his…

Read More

Christmas Books – What Happens To Good Boys

In December I highlighted a few food books and cook books which looked promising as presents for people of quality who know and love their food. And, would you believe it? I now find myself the proud owner of most of them. It definitely pays to advertise. TASTE: My Life Through Food Stanley Tucci Fig…

Read More

Chef Watch Featuring Jamie Scott of The Newport, Newport on Tay

Chef Watch Featuring Masterchef: The Professionals Winner Jamie Scott The Newport Restaurant, Newport-on-Tay, Fife How long have you been a chef? I have been a chef professionally for 15 years Why did you become a chef? I became a chef because I failed to become a professional golfer and I love food Favourite ingredient Onions,…

Read More

A Food Day of Note Next Week

Well, food lovers, is your diary primed? What famous British food day is with us next week? Warning: the answer may not be the obvious one. And while you’re pondering, who can tell me what a collop is? I encountered it years ago in a Scottish hotel where the dinner menu featured a dish entitled…

Read More

L is for … Lime

I was well into my twenties before I did it for the first time. I’d watched it, obviously. I have a recollection of seeing it done in a plate glass window in Edinburgh’s Princes Street, and being struck by how ruinously expensive the whole process was. While many things came to me early in life,…

Read More

The Food Producers: Steven Mitchell’s Buffalo Mozzarella

So Gordon Ramsay’s production team for The F Word phone up your buffalo farm. They want to come up so the great man can see you making your buffalo mozzarella. Sure, you say. There’s only one teeny problem – you don’t produce mozzarella. In fact you’ve never made cheese in your life. It wasn’t quite…

Read More

Tom’s Food! New Year Resolutions for 2022

Happy New Year! As you are probably aware, this column doesn’t make new year resolutions. Well, not for me, but I thought you lot could use a few. Avoid Vegans Part 1 Lift up any packet of ready made, allegedly plant based food and shudder. For starters, if you are eschewing meat (as opposed to…

Read More

Tom’s 3 Fs of Christmas

Annie Grey

Those who know me will be aware that much of my life is centred round three Fs. Food, Football and Books. (Ah, you noticed the flaw in the last part of my tricorn rhetoric. Never mind.) I write a fair bit about food books in this column, so perhaps I can justify that as the…

Read More

The Food Alphabet: K is for Kale

I know that some friends will be recoiling in horror at the thought of this stuff. Truth be told, cooked without care its coarse bitter leaves are pretty unpalatable, and its reputation as Scottish peasant food hasn’t helped. The original spelling in Scots was kail. It was an important staple, largely because it would grow…

Read More

Chef Watch – Phil White of LeftField, Edinburgh

Chef Watch Featuring Phil White of LeftField, Edinburgh How long have you been a chef? Very long time, Tom. I started when I was 16 at the National Exhibition Centre. It was great. We cooked from 4 people up to 2000. We also got to sneak into the gigs at the arena afterwards. Why did…

Read More

Stirred by Stir-up Sunday?

For a number of years now I have been making my own Christmas pudding. While I guess my mum did too, at least in the early days, I have no recollection of any great tradition surrounding it, the silver threepenny excepted. I normally get round to it in the latter part of November, but when…

Read More

Well, Here’s Another Nice Mess…

Were you as shocked as I to read of the recent death of Aldo Campeol owner of Le Beccherie in Treviso in northern Italy? Shock at the passing of a 93 year old man? Hardly, but it was the news that he was credited as the father of tiramisu, which had me shaking my head…

Read More