It’s official, I’m two weeks into my summer holiday and I’m practically living on a diet of pork, gin and prosecco! The fact that I’m eating my way round the island and socialising over numerous dinners and lunches, it is no surprise that it’s getting to the point where I dare not put my jeans in the wash in fear they won’t go back on. My workout gear has sat in the bottom of my suitcase and just when I thought I should give it an outing my back has decided it had different ideas. So there is only one thing for it, keep enjoying my foodie trails and sweat it out in detox when I’m back in the desert heat.
Jersey has always been known for its great food, and just like Kuwait due to the fact there isn’t masses to do, eating out becomes the social go to and the culinary delights that are served up are well worth it. The island now boasts 3 Michelin starred restaurants and whilst I have tried these in the past, this trip has been made up of my favourite little eateries, which for me sum up island life. Some the food is average and by no means something you would write home about but it maybe the setting or the sentiment that brings me back.
The two that fall into this bracket and that are frequented with my mum is St Peters Garden Center, which one of my oldest friends refers to as SPGC. This little cafe is, I guess like many typical garden centre cafes, the food isn’t grand but if you fancy a quick toastie or tea and cake it’s an easy pit stop. I have already been here 3 times since being back, meeting up with other westees who rarely make it to town, and I have to say the Millionaire sponge cake was to die for. This triple chocolate moose cake hybrid was inhaled before anyone else had even a chance to ask for a spoon! There is a little farm shop tea room at Classic Herd, which my family affectionately call Grannies, as 9 times out of 10 it’s full of octogenarians. That being said I love the simplicity of the mismatched table clothes, chairs and crockery. It’s the kind of place you can still get a pot of tea for one and the teapot, cup and saucer are all from random sets but hark back to the good old days of bone china and doilies. Again the food is simple, homemade and sourced from the farms resources. Mum and I always seem to order quiche and salad and finish off with an enormous slice of Victoria sponge. This time I took hubby who enjoyed his hearty bowl of traditional Jersey bean crock, a local dish made with beans and pigs trotters, resulting in a thick stew which islanders have enjoyed for hundreds of years.
A far cry from these simple days out, last week we treated ourselves to afternoon tea. Heading down to St Brelades bay with mum, sister and her mother in law, we chose to indulge in not only cake but a gorgeous view at the L’Horizon hotel. We were so lucky that finally he weather turned that day and we could sit out on the terrace and enjoy the sun and perfect beach view. It’s days like this I realise how lucky I am to call this home.
As the delights started to appear on the traditional tiered cake stand, we all oohed and ahhed over the mouth-watering petite cakes. The quote of the week has to come from my little sis, who started to pile her plate with more than one item and when I giggled at her eagerness she declared
Don’t come between a pregnant women and cake!
Mum didn’t let the side down either, quickly ordering 3 large classes of bubbles to aid the scone digestion and the pregnant one can drive home. Everything about this afternoon was lovely, the warm scones with a choice of toppings; jam, clotted cream, lemon curd and Jersey black butter (a treacle like apple gooeyness), the view and the company, all the main women in the bumps life excitedly talking about her arrival and baby showers.
A year ago a family friend’s daughter returned from her own expat adventure and opened up a handmade gelato parlour in the heart of town and brilliantly named The Inside Scoop. My last few trips home I have missed trying this and according to my mum, it’s the best ice cream she’s ever had. So this week I insisted we finally give it a try. Now at this point, I should add that I am diary intolerant and knew that this wasn’t a wise idea, but as I entered under the massive retro ice cream cone sign and saw the cabinet of gorgeous creaminess I thought sod it.
As the three of us just stared into the glass, mum queries if one was coconut, the guy behind the counter was caught off guard as I quickly interjected that perhaps the full coconut shell perched on top was a give a way! Once again my incredible powers of decisiveness were on show (not) as I was still stood there after mum and sis were sat enjoying their mango and coconut concoctions. I finally took a scoop of both Oreo and Reeses peanut butter cup. OMG this is where I wish blogging had some subliminal taste factor because I’m telling you people this was incredible. The fact that I knew my tummy would be bloated and I’ll probably spend a few hours on the loo, didn’t matter. This was worth it.
A little gem that I discovered when I was here for a few months last year, was Don Street Deli. This was new one for me, as this once hair dressers had been transformed into a gourmet deli by Michelin star chef Shaun Rankin. The deli sits next door to his latest venture Omar (which I am yet to try) and is a foodie heaven. The walls of olive oils, prosecco and chutney face the cabinets of artisan sausage rolls, posh scotch eggs and the best looking sandwiches. As I sit in the stooled window bar, I people watch enjoying a great double espresso and contemplate whether I could sneak the cup and saucer into my handbag, as it’s simply so pretty. On this occasion I ordered a wood-fire bacon roll. Ok it was not cheap for a bacon roll, but wow it was so good. Crisp smokey streaky bacon on a light buttery brioche bun was divine and I can see me returning for more than the 2 visits I have already managed to squeeze in.
Amongst these highlights, there have been more than one visit to El Tico, numerous bacon roll sampling at The Lineup, a little food truck nestled along the five mile road, where you can enjoy your bap sitting on the sea wall watching the surf. Cafe JAC in town for my fav breakfast burritos and soya flat white, an old haunt for my monthly brunch with the girls, bringing back memories of teenage Saturday drama club. My must for a beef massaman curry at Little Thai gave me an unexpected romantic date night with Hubby after we got stood up by my bestie. Galettes, far too many cakes and cups of coffee are keeping me fuelled on my food adventures and it seems that as I work my round the island parishes, all roads lead to…..food.