There’s nothing quite like a cheeky Nando’s. Whether you’re a lemon and herb kinda person or you’re heading straight for the wing roulette, it can do no wrong. It has a bevy of celebrity fans – Adele, Drake, and Bella Hadid are just a few famous faces that have apparently been spotted getting their fill of Nando’s. Ed Sheeran has a black card and even wrote a song about it. Prince Harry reportedly ordered a pitta with extra cheese and a side of creamy mash when he popped in recently.
But back to food news. If you’re a PERi-PERi fanatic, you’ll be pleased to know that Nando’s is now trialling a new lunchtime menu and it’ll cost you less than £6. Bargain.
They’re launching a PERi-PERi Chicken Bowl, filled with chicken fillet pieces, spicy rice, chargrilled peppers, spinach and lightly dressed corn.
And that’s not all. A customisable lunchtime menu is also part of the trial, featuring the more traditional Nando’s plates like 1/4 chicken and 1 side, 3 wings and 1 side, Caesar salad and veggie cataplana.
All items are a bargain £5.95 and are available for takeaway – meaning that you can bring your bowl of chicken goodness back to the office if you need to.
It’ll be rolled out across 37 restaurants across the UK, on offer Monday to Thursday between opening and 3pm.
As the all-round culinary expert on Netflix’ Queer Eye, Antoni Porowsi knows a thing or two about food. Ahead of the release of his first cookbook, Antoni in the Kitchen, we asked the self-taught chef about his love for cooking, go-to dinner party recipe, favourite foodie destination and so much more.
Tell me a little bit more about your background?
My upbringing was a mix of Polish heritage and Canadian culture. I was born in Montreal, but my parents and older sister emigrated from Poland, so I was the first member of my family to be born outside of Europe. Montreal is a very diverse city; I was exposed to multicultural foods from a very early age. We had this tradition in elementary school called ‘buffet de nation’ and all the kids would bring food from their respective countries. Most of the parents were from different countries, so everyone would bring two dishes.
I lived in Montreal for most my childhood, then moved to West Virginia for three years, and ended up going back to Montreal for university. I was studying Psychology and working night time jobs at several restaurants – from a family run Polish restaurant to the sort of farm-to-table restaurants – until I moved to New York, where I’ve been living for ten years now.
At what point did you develop an interested in food?
It sort of stemmed from necessity. As a child, I wasn’t really allowed to partake in the kitchen in terms of cooking, only my mom would do that, and I would just watch from a distance. It wasn’t until I was 18 and no longer living at home, that I had to figure out how to cook meals for myself. I quickly realised that it was such a lovely way to communicate with other people. My friends and classmates from university would come over and we would make meals together – it was such an easy, inexpensive way to socialise.
But you never trained to be a professional chef?
We have a lot of physicians in our family, so when I graduated high school, I was encouraged to pursue medicine. That wasn’t something I wanted to do – I was obsessed with movies and I wanted to be an actor – a degree in Psychology ended being the middle ground. When I finished my undergrad, I moved to New York and studied at the Neighborhood Playhouse. Afterwards, I worked for Ted Allen for a couple of years – he was the original food and wine expert on Bravo’s Queer Eye for the Straight Guy.
When I was studying, and afterwards even when I was working, the one job is always had was working in restaurants. It didn’t register to me that it was something I could do in a professional capacity until Queer Eye came about and that is when it all changed. For me, food was how I connected with my family growing up, behind closed doors in our dining room. I would consider myself a private person and being on Queer Eye sort of flipped the tables because now I’m talking about my personal life, my experience growing up and what it was like being part of the LGBTQI community.
As a private person, what has been like dealing with the success of Queer Eye?
It was definitely rather explosive at the beginning. It felt like this overnight thing that happened. I would get really exciting about meeting all kinds of interesting people, going to these events and being flown around for press. It was, and still is, an exciting new life – I mean, it’s only been two years. During that first year, I didn’t know how long the excitement was going to last, so I would drain myself until exhaustion and then go home and cry. There were mornings when I would step outside my apartment to get a coffee and within a few minutes, someone would recognise me and ask for hug, even though I hadn’t showered yet, or had just gotten back from the gym.
People get very excited because they think they know us personally. We are ourselves on the show, it’s not a full-on performance the way an actor plays a character, we are wider versions of ourselves. At first, I would forget this and someone would grab and I’d be like: oh right, this is a thing, and this isn’t a thing that is only on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Eventually I started to get used to it, and now I’m able to remain cool and calm, say hi and not be as much of a weirdo. But I still have days where I’m a little shyer and I have to remind myself that this interaction might be really important to this person.
Do you help the other cast members with their cooking skills?
Tan once made me roasted and mashed sweet potatoes with chilly flakes and they were really nice, but he hasn’t fully cooked a meal for me yet. I do know for a fact that Tan cooks a lot at home for him and his husband, so he doesn’t need the help. Jonathan, however, I believe has absolutely zero interest in ever preparing a meal for himself. He is arguably one of the largest sponsors of Postmates, it’s a delivery service that will delivery anything at any time of the day, whether it’s McDonalds, limes, a block of cheese or chips in the middle of night.
I’ll be 100% honest, whenever I have Tan and Jonathan over at my house for fajita night, Tan always asks if he can help, but I love to do everything myself. One because I’m way too much of a control freak, secondly because I tell myself that’s what a good host does. But I’m trying to be better. I recently watched the docu-series Salt Fat Acid Heat on Netflix and chef Samin Nosrat was explaining that if she is making pesto, she lets one of the guests tear the basil so they feel like they’re part of the process, and leave feeling like they have learned something. So maybe that’ll lead up to teaching Jonathan and Tan something.
What’s your go-to dinner party dish?
Growing up in Quebec, we always had a cheese course after dessert, so I kick off my dinner parties with the thing that makes me the happiest; dairy. My favourite starter is a cheesy, lemon, rosemary and artichoke dip. It’s dairy-heavy, but the brightness of the lemon and tanginess of rosemary make this perfect with crackers, chips, or even some beautiful rainbow carrots, endives or thinly sliced radishes. If I don’t make the dip, then I will always have a cheese and charcuterie board.
And for date-night?
The champagne and lemon risotto is easy and light. You and your date can drink some of the champagne and use the rest in the dish. It’s a simple recipe, only takes 20 to 30 minutes to prepare, and there’s something sexy about stirring gently over a stove. Another favourite is the macadamia-crusted lamb lollies. There’s just something very primal about tearing away the macadamia nut crust of these perfectly medium-rare, salty, crispy lamp lollies drizzled in a spicy honey agrodolce. It’s sticky, it’s spicy, it’s meaty and it’s a bit of animal fat – I think that’s the sexiest dish in the book.
I assume you have a lot of cookbooks. What’s the one you always grab when looking for inspiration?
My favourite one is Feast by Nigella Lawson. I received it as a gift, and it’s the one that inspires me to be a little creative and try to figure out the story that I’m telling with my food. It’s a fantastic book (especially if you’re looking for inspiration for festive menus) and there’s something so sensual about the way she writes about food that is also so comforting. If she manages to do that with her writing alone, I can only image what her dinner parties are like.
You now have your own cookbook. What has this experience been like?
It all happened when we were filming season 3 and 4 of Queer Eye in Kansas City, Missouri. I would film during the day and then go home at night and test out various dishes per night. None of my recipes were ever written down, everything was just in my head, and I’ve never measured a single thing, so the technical part of the process took a lot longer than I thought it would.
I’m really fascinated by the fact that food can be so incredibly intimate and personal, so there’s a story behind every recipe in the book, no matter how basic or how complex it is – whether it’s a memory of where I tried it for the first time or who made it for me, a dish I invented out of necessity when I was a broke student or a Polish heritage recipe that I wanted to improve and reflect a little bit more of who I am.
What’s your favourite foodie destination?
Paris is great for decadence. When I’m there I just sit in a café, have an espresso and then go somewhere fantastic and enjoy really nice traditional food that is all about technique. What I love about Rome is the lack of pretention. You’ll have some of the best food there is, served at rickety tables in little cobble stone streets. One of my favourite restaurants is Su & Giu – I once went for three meals in a row – it has laminated photos of the food hanging on the walls and the nonna there runs the show. They have the best puntarelle salad, made from the leafy tops of chicory, anchovies, lemon juice and olive oil.
What about London?
Ninety per cent of the time I go for Indian or Pakistani food with Tan – our favourite restaurant, Star of India, sadly closed down – and the other ten per cent, I go to Nando’s. I’ll order two sides of halloumi – I love it so much, it’s squeaky, it’s delicious and it brings me so much joy – two classic burgers, one order of the peri-livers, three sides of the peri-naise and finally, I’ll ask them for a large plastic bag of their nut mix – they usually sell them in little containers but I’m not about that. Actually, since we’ve touched on Nando’s, I actually have a little homage to Nando’s in my cookbook and created my own version of their livers.
I really wish I had a chic recommendation, but that’s the tricky part. We’re so lucky to visit all these great cities, but we get taken from one hotel to the next, and we don’t really have time to actually explore. I know London has a really awesome food scene, but as soon as we get there, it’s all about Indian food. I was raised on Indian food so that’s something, especially when I tried it in London, that changed everything for me.
Antoni in the Kitchen by Antoni Porowski is out on September 19
It’s official – the summer is pretty much over (sob). Farewell to summer dresses, G&Ts in the sunshine and BBQs on the weekends.
But it’s not all doom and gloom, because the changing of the seasons means that it’s time for autumn to step in. Hurrah! Cosy knits, Halloween, fireworks and before you know it – Christmas.
If there’s one thing that we look forward to all year round it’s the return of the Pumpkin Spice Latte. And guess what? It’s baaaack. Starbucks has released their new autumn menu just a few weeks before the official start of the season and it all looks absolutely delicious.
First and foremost, the Pumpkin Spice Latte – made with Starbucks Espresso Roast, pumpkin pie flavoured sauce and steamed milk, topped with whipped cream, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves – is back on the scene.
Starbucks is also introducing a whole host of pumpkin beverages, including Iced Pumpkin Spice Cold Foam Macchiato, an Iced Pumpkin Spice Latte and the Pumpkin Spice Frappuccino.
Plus, there’s a vegan alternative of the fan favourite – all you have to do is ask for the vegan sauce and swap out the dairy in favour of oat or almond milk.
And if, for whatever reason, Pumpkin Spice Lattes aren’t your thing, there’s now a Mocha Praline Macchiato on the menu. It’s Starbucks Espresso Roast, chocolate infused with hazelnut flavour combined with a shot of espresso and steamed milk, plus a drizzle of mocha sauce. Yum.
There’s also an iced version if you’re still clinging on to the final days of summer.
It’s the bank holiday weekend, the sun is going to be out for the second time this year (hurrah) and every pub garden up and down the country will be, predictably, rammed.
However, if your plans involve staying at home and treating yourself and your pals to a tipple from the comfort of your own garden this long weekend, you might be tempted to stock up on the Aldi pink unicorn gin.
And if you’re more of a Prosecco or Champagne drinker, we’ve got some advice for you – don’t keep your bottles of bubbly chilling in the fridge until a couple of days before you’re ready to drink them.
Winemaker Marie-Christine Osselin told Huffington Post that it can impact the flavour because the cork can dry out in the fridge.
She said: ‘If you’re planning to enjoy your bottle of Champagne (or sparkling wine) within 3 to 4 days of the purchase, it is fine to store the bottle in the refrigerator.
‘If it sits in the fridge for weeks, the cork can dry out due to no humidity.
‘As corks dry out, the seal between the bottle and the cork loosen up and the Champagne will oxidize faster, changing its aromas.’
The best thing to do is store bottles in a cool, dry area away from direct sunlight until the times comes to pop it open.
Chocolate/doughnut/anything-sweet-and-delicious lovers, the limited edition Krispy Kreme x KitKat rings are here and you’re going to want to try them pronto.
There are two new doughnuts on the go, described as: ‘two, smooth chocolatey varieties; a classic milk chocolate flavoured glazed ring and a white chocolate flavoured glazed ring. Both are dusted with crushed KitKat pieces and finished with an iconic KitKatfinger.’
Mouth watering? Same.
You’ll be able to get your hands on them in stores nationwide from Monday 26th August to Sunday 13th October 2019 and chances are they’ll be super popular so stock up while you can.
But if you’re keen to try out these delights for free, all you need to do is share a photo of yourself and your colleagues enjoying a break and three offices in seven cities across the UK will win 10 limited edition dozens (yes, that’s 120 doughnuts) of KitKat Krispy Kremes.
It’s National Burger Day and what a brilliant excuse to tuck into your favourite burger, whether it’s a classic cheese combo, a patty enveloped in streaky bacon or a veggie halloumi and mushroom number.
But where do you start when it comes to picking the perfect burger joint?
How about somewhere that boasts about offering more than 250,000 possible topping combinations? Or has sold 13.6 million burgers in the UK since they launched in 2013?
You guessed it – we’re talking about Five Guys. The diner-style restaurant has sold enough burgers in Blighty to reach Paris and back if they were lined up. They have a fresh-not-frozen ethos which promises the perfect patty, whether you opt for a simple hamburger or ‘all the way’ (your choice of burger topped with mayo, lettuce, pickles, tomatoes, grilled onions, grilled mushrooms, ketchup and mustard).
And let’s not forget the hand cut skin-on chips. And the hot dogs. And the milkshakes.
Mouth watering yet? Same.
Team Marie Claire popped in to celebrate National Burger Day, and here are the MC approved combos that you absolutely must try…
Best Five Guys Burger Combos
Holly Rains, Digital Editor
‘I’m an adult with a child-like approach to ordering food, so I went for the little cheeseburger with tomato, ketchup, mayo, and lettuce, fries and an Oreo milkshake. And a Coke. I definitely didn’t need such a vast buffet of American-themed goodness, but my god was the Oreo milkshake a revelation. Thick and Oreo-y with Oreo bits lurking within, my tip is to eschew the straw and just neck it straight from the cup.’
Sunil Makan, Associate Editor
‘I know it’s National Burger Day but I just couldn’t help myself from ordering the hot dog (with onions and hot sauce, should you care). To be totally honest, they’re a thing a beauty. I got mine with a strawberry milkshake – that classic USA combo. And can safely say I’m am completely satisfied with my choice. And since I’m baring it all, I had a bit of a YOLO moment and actually ordered a side of cheeseburger. But I figure it’s no big deal as it’s National Burger Day.’
Jenny Proudfood, Digital Features Editor
‘Five Guys burgers are my absolute favourite – I don’t know if it’s the peanut oil, the American-style cheese or the double beef patties, but I have only ever had sensational experiences. My pick? The bacon cheeseburger with grilled onions, mayo and ketchup. Then a small fries because let’s face it, the portions are ginormous, and a chocolate milkshake, complete with a paper straw (yes, Five Guys!).’
Penny Goldstone, Digital Fashion Editor
‘I’m a classic girl at heart when it comes to burgers, so I always go with a cheeseburger with grilled onions, mustard and ketchup. Team that with some chips and you’ve got yourself a classic meal that will never disappoint.’
Jadie Troy-Pryde, Acting Social Media Manager
‘I can’t resist the bacon cheeseburger with pickles and mayo. It’s a feast: dripping with melted cheese, crispy bacon threaded through the two patties and finished off with tangy pickles and a dollop of mayonnaise. Team it with a vanilla milkshake and you have the ultimate combo.’
The last bank holiday weekend of 2019 (sob) is fast approaching, and it has been predicted that it’ll be a bit of a hot one with temperatures set to rise to a very welcome 28 degrees celsius. Wonderful.
While many city dwellers will be flocking to the seaside to soak up the sun, others will be enjoying the weather from the comfort of their nearest beer garden.
However, if you fancy staying at home and throwing a little bank holiday get together, Aldi has released a pink unicorn gin that will go down a treat with guests at any sunny backyard party.
It supposedly tastes like marshmallows and candy floss, perfect for anyone with a sweet tooth, and also shimmers when shaken. We’re sold.
It’s made by The Infusionist Small Batch and will be available in stores and online from Thursday 22nd August 2019. At just £9.99 for a 50cl bottle it’s an absolute bargain, too, but we’re going to guess that it’ll sell out pretty fast so you’d better be quick.
Aldi is also releasing ten spirits in time for the long weekend to celebrate their new spirits festival and you can expect rums, cream liqueurs and tinned cocktails.
There’s a Passion Fruit, Apricot and Coconut flavour gin (£19.99) and a Rhubarb and Bramble gin (£15.99), as well as a Strawberries and Cream flavour liqueur (£9.99) and a bottle of Passion Fruit Vodka Martini or a can of Raspberry Mojito (£1.29).
Plus, there’s a sweet, fruity and slightly spiced Tequila & Mezcal (£29.99) which is available as an exclusive online offer.
No excuse not to throw that bank holiday party now…
Ranking some of the nations favourite things always ends in a heated debate. Remember the Channel 5 Britain’s Favourite Crisp debacle? Earlier this year, celebs discussed their favourite snacks and some of the UK’s most popular crisps were ranked in order of preference. It was labelled a ‘national scandal’ for various reasons – Chilli Doritos made the top three for crying out loud – and the whole thing caused outrage.
Now, there’s another ranking to rile you up.
Digital creator Niki Albon decided to share how he would order some of the most popular British ice lollies, listing them from ‘God tier’ to ‘awful’.
He tweeted: ‘I don’t care what anyone says, *THIS* is how you rank our ice lollies. Anything missing isn’t worth the freezer space.’
The list has proved controversial and has had thousands of ice lolly fans chipping in to question these bold claims.
Why? Because a Jubbly (a what?) made it to the ‘God tier’, while Mini Milks somehow ranked ‘top tier’ and yet the delicious and thirst-quenching Calippo only placed at ‘mid tier’, with the childhood favourite Twister simply deemed ‘awful’.
Niki’s followers were quick to respond to the tweet, with one angrily replying: ‘Niki. I can agree on the Feast. But a Nobbly Bobbly is worth more than your soul. Putting a Twister so low is so insulting to so many. Use your platform responsibly or GTFO.’
Another added: ‘You really thought you did something putting rocket lollies at the bottom huh?’
One simply replied: ‘Honeyyyy noooo.’
Others were appalled that some of ice lolly icons didn’t get the recognition they deserve, with one person writing: ‘Absolutely wrong. Zapp, Fab and Twister belong in the god tier.’
Not everyone disagreed, however, with one fan writing: ‘I’m so relieved someone finally puts Fabs at the bottom.’
Another said: ‘To be honest, in this weather… all ice lollies belong in the God tier.’
Hear, hear – that’s one thing we can all agree on.
Summer is here, which means it’s the perfect weather for you to enjoy a G&T in a huge glass at a delightful rooftop bar. If you prefer your gin at home, there’s a Waitrose gin tasting service which allows you to try a range of flavours from the comfort of your couch. Either way, you can enjoy your favourite tipple.
So you’ll be pleased to know you can now combine your love of gin and your love of baking thanks to the new ASDA pink gin cupcake kits. Oh, yes.
The packets cost just £1.75 and they’ll make six cupcakes and includes paper cases. The only additional ingredients you’ll need are eggs, butter and water. Whack them in a bowl with the mix, bake for 15-18 minutes and your pink gin cupcakes are almost ready to eat.
There is one more step, and that’s decorating your baked goods by adding the raspberry gin and tonic flavour frosting mix and sprinkling the red sugar crunch pieces on top.
Just so you know, they don’t contain actual gin – just flavourings. However, they’d make the perfect addition to any summer spread, whether you’re having a BBQ or casual garden drinks with your pals.
The kits are available online and we’re certain they’ll sell out so you’ll have to be quick.
But if you want something unique and delicious, you’re in luck. Cadbury is releasing not one but three new chocolate bars to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Last year the Cadbury Inventor Competition gave people the chance to produce their own chocolate bars with up to three ingredients, and the three finalists have now been chosen – and their creations sound like a proper treat.
The new flavours put a twist on the original Dairy Milk bar, and they sound really tasty. There’s a Dairy Milk Choco-Latte bar, which is a milk chocolate number with coffee flavoured creme and digestive biscuit pieces.
Then there’s the Dairy Milk Simply The Zest, orange flavoured chocolate with almond caramel pieces and digestive biscuit.
And lastly, there’s a Dairy Milk Raspberry Shortcake flavour, milk chocolate studded with raspberry pieces, white crisp pearls and shortcake.
However, there can only be one winner. Brits have the very tough job of trying all three and reporting back to Cadbury to let them know which one is their favourite.
You can vote for the one that tickles your tastebuds here.
The official website reads: ‘We scoured the nation for the finest inventors to create a new Cadbury Dairy Milk flavour… and now it’s time for you to cast your vote for which of our three shortlisted bars will go down in history as a permanent part of our Cadbury Dairy Milk range.’
The bar with the most votes will become a permanent fixture in the Cadbury’s Dairy Milk range.