Hospitality is coming home

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There are different ways of approaching the grocery shop during the pandemic. You can shop by stealth at 7am in the morning. You can attempt to order online from the big supermarkets. Or you could shop around more organically.

WORDS: Jean Hill

Consider the role of food in your life and how it impacts on your well-being. We are what we eat. Sounds unlikely, I have not morphed into a Mars bar yet (it is totally under control). So this could be a good time to think about the food that makes you feel glad to be alive, does not impact on the planet, and comes with organic options. Recipe boxes offer a tempting meal in the making and help cut down on waste.

From Carol Ann Duffy:

Valentine

‘Not a red rose or a satin heart.

I give you an onion.
It is a moon wrapped in brown paper.
It promises light
like the careful undressing of love…’

When we reach the other side of the pandemic, restaurants are going to have to harness every viable blueprint to make their venues safe, secure and open for business.

We wanted to fly the flag for small independents, and the responsible larger ones. We remember some of those memorable restaurant reviews.

Maray Bold Street has been delivering tempting Mediterranean dishes during the lockdown. Alternatively, you could support this great Mediterranean restaurant by buying a gift card to use in the future.

In this Mediterranean and North African cuisine, vegetables have a starring role. Heritage carrots, with rose harissa ( North African hot chili pepper paste) and lemon, delivers a vibrant spark to the sweet crunch. Butternut squash merges with feta, and the salty sharp taste of the feta, enhances the subtle flavour of the squash. All divine.

www.maray.co.uk

Chapters of Us

There is a coffee shop, eatery and bar, that is eco-friendly. Their premises is in the Baltic Triangle. Coffee comes from local company, Neighbourhood Coffee, who’ve created a signature house blend. Natural wines from Bunch Wine Bar, whose low-intervention and organic bottles shape the drinks menu. You can order a Siren brunch box, with egg, mushroom and potato wedges. Order by Wednesday for weekend delivery.

www.chaptersofus-x-siren.square.site

Casa Italia

Being invited to a vegan lunch at Casa Italia was unexpected, great fun and kept on delivering fresh surprises. We got to sample everything on the vegan menu, and finished it all off with a gorgeous tiramisu. Check out the web site for delivery details. Casa Italia is, deservedly, legendary in Liverpool.

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Cheese and tomato garlic bread 👏🏼

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Casa Italia: Phone:0151 227 5774

Menu: www.thecasaitalia.com

www.thecasaitalia.com/home-delivery

Matta’s

This is a wonderful store to visit. International foods, and usual and unusual herbs and spices are on offer, and enjoy the quality of their award winning food. You can shop by country or category. I spotted organic Peruvian reserve ground coffee. Orders are despatched within 48 hours.

Strawberries were cultivated by the Romans as early as 200 BC. A soup made from strawberries and soured cream was traditionally served-up to newly-weds in medieval times. We prefer to just put them on our sweet treats! The strawberry is also reportedly a symbol for Venus, the goddess of love, presumably because of its heart shape and red colour.

Visit the store daily from 9am except Sunday’s from 11am.

www.mattas.co.uk/

Ayuthaya Thai Restaurant

This is a favourite of our editor, and comes highly recommended. Located in Crosby, you would need to check for delivery (open Tuesday to Sunday). They also do takeaway. Their menu is a treat for the taste buds. Try duck in Tamarind sauce, or Thai green curry, or prawns with Saigon sauce.

www.thai-2-go.com  0151 9320308

Mindful Chef delivers nation-wide.

You can order recipe boxes. You can access free recipes. A weekly box contains 2 to 5 healthy recipes. For every meal that you buy Mindful Chef will donate towards a school meal for a child living in poverty.

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This sizzling hot weather ☀️ is screaming out for fresh flavours 😛 Take things tropical with our Spiced jackfruit lettuce wraps & refreshing mango salsa (recipe below) 🥬🥭🌱 Founder @myles_hopper will be cooking up this Caribbean-inspired dish LIVE on our Facebook page at 7pm tonight (joined by a special guest!) tune in to cook along with us 🎥 You need: 120g cherry tomatoes 1 baby gem lettuce 1 lime 1 mango 1 red onion 1 tbsp jerk seasoning 1 tbsp oil 240g black beans (drained) 250g jackfruit (drained) 2 garlic cloves 2 tbsp tomato puree Medium handful of fresh coriander You cook: 1. Boil a kettle. Finely dice the red onion and finely chop or crush the garlic. Cut the cherry tomatoes into quarters. Roughly chop the coriander leaves. 2. Drain and rinse the jackfruit and black beans separately. Thinly slice the jackfruit and roughly chop. 3. Heat a medium-sized pan with 1 tbsp oil on a medium heat and cook the onion for 3 mins, then add the garlic and jerk seasoning (it’s spicy, so add to taste). Cook for a further 2 mins. Add the jackfruit to the pan, stir to coat in the spice, then add the black beans, 200ml boiling water, the tomato puree, the cherry tomatoes and half of the coriander. Season with sea salt (to taste) and simmer with a lid on for 10 mins, then remove the lid and cook for a further 5 mins. Add a little more boiling water if the sauce becomes too dry. 4. Meanwhile, slice the end off the gem lettuce and separate the leaves. 5. Make the mango salsa; slice the cheeks off the mango and cut the mango flesh into small cubes, removing the skin. In a small bowl, mix the mango with the juice from half the lime and the remaining coriander. 6. Spoon the spiced jackfruit into the gem lettuce leaves, top with the mango salsa and serve on two warm plates. Drizzle over the remaining lime juice, to taste. #mindfulchef #recipebox #FacebookLive

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www.mindfulchef.com

Farm to Fork

The food is delivered to your door-step from an organic grocery store. You can order: fresh fruit and vegetables and dairy produce. Check out the food box (that could include Aberdeen Angus steak and asparagus).

www.farmtoforkliverpool.com

Little World Market

Advertised as home to Liverpool’s best independents. Their produce is locally and responsibly sourced, with organic options and they do great coffee.

www.littleworldmarket.co.uk

Delifonseca

The famous restaurant and delicatessen has something special to gladden the heart of meat eaters. You can grab a braised beef and roasting juices filled baguette. Edge’s butchers, have local lamb of the finest quality. Open 8am until 9pm, you can order and collect (Dockside at Brunswick). We had a stunning meal at Delifonseca just a few months ago, and I had the best Persian (Iranian) lamb stew ever.

www.delifonseca.co.uk

0151 2550808

Spice Village, Whiston

Visit their web-site and down-load their new app. This is Indian food, with a fine reputation. Got me, just the mention of poppadums and chutney tray. Then lamb rogan josh has me heading for the car.

www.spicevillagewhiston.com

Abel & Cole

Food boxes come in all shapes and sizes, full of organic wholesomeness. There are plenty of options: from fruit and vegetable boxes, to pantry favourites and meat and fish.

www.abelandcole.co.uk

Related read: Boxing off some healthy food options for delivery or collection

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