Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

This Was a Chef-to-Be Who Knew His Onions

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

This Was a Chef-to-Be Who Knew His Onions

Article excerpt

Segedunum Restaurant at Tyne Metropolitan College, North Tyneside.

After this evening's meal, I am confident the future is in safe hands because Lynn Mitchinson's student chefs designed and delivered an ambitious menu.

My starter of toasted muffin with sautAed spinach, poached egg and cheese sauce was an adventurous mix. The lightly toasted bread base, with a layer of iron rich spinach, wilted without being watery, was topped with a golden runny egg and a swathe of gently savoury sauce sprinkled with fresh chives.

This was a mini-masterpiece of fine judgment.

My companion's mixed leaf salad with carrot and parsnip crisps was another example of how to get it right. Crunchy leaves, lightly dressed and accompanied by furls of featherweight crisps was a brilliant introduction.

Main courses of roasted swordfish, grilled peppers and pesto sauce and supreme of chicken, wild mushroom risotto and white truffle jus followed.

My swordfish was an interesting idea. The delicate slice of juicy fish came with a tumble of grilled peppers and a surprisingly spicy sauce which kept my tastebuds dodging all over the place. A great little number.

My companion's chicken looked great. The herb-crusted skin glistened temptingly and she gave in quickly and crunched her way through to the succulent meat. Perfectly cooked to hold all its natural moisture, it hardly needed the robust, cheesy risotto. The pearly rice was firmly held together by a muscular sauce, with plenty of ceps making their mark.

Side dishes of steamed beans and carrots, and a delicious interpretation of garlic potatoes, made a clear statement about the quality of the work going on in the kitchen. A chef who respects vegetables knows his onions.

Desserts rounded things off very sweetly. My companion's Steamed jam pudding with lashings of custard was a trip down memory lane, only this time the present was even better than the past. The fluffy sponge, capped with fruit-packed jam, was surrounded by a creamy, foamy sauce that was the real thing. …

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