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Geeking Out Over…Food as Fuel Part 3
The training for the London to Brighton 100k walk continues apace, and slowly but surely my legs are becoming instruments of endurance transit.
The first thing to report is that I found a really good fuelling soup, at least partially by mistake. The mistake was spilling a little too many fennel seeds into the base ingredients for my sweet potato soup, but the resulting intense aniseed worked incredibly well with the bright orange tubers to create a really good soup, packed with restorative goodness. I’ll reign back the fennel a touch, next time, but it’s certainly now in the lead to take the honoured place in my race-day thermos.
Ristorante Ferrari was our first refuelling stop, in this instalment. The stylish, family-run Italian in Bruntsfield is well worth a visit. Their fixed-price Sunday lunchtime menu combines excellent quality with very reasonable cost. I’d walked from Bonaly to Hillend across four Pentland peaks that day, so was ready for a feed, when I joined the magnificent MJ and the heavenly Helen. Good soup, lovely seafood pasta, a cheese board, then back on the road with considerable vigour – lovely jubbly.
The next week’s stop was Porto & Fi, where MJ and I were joined by friends Mel and Milo on a little walk to and from Cramond. It was one of those sparkly sunny days that was accompanied by the kind of biting breeze that makes the tips of your nose and ears tingle. We were glad to be out of the keen wind, and I was more than delighted with their first-rate soup. Mains of game pie for me and smoked haddock and a poached egg for MJ ensured we were fortified for a good eight or so post-lunch miles.
The following week, a change of approach saw us ambling along the flat path of the Union Canal, past Ratho, then doubling back for lunch at The Bridge Inn, which was a popular venue for me to drink blackcurrant and lemonade, when I was eight. Pork products featured heavily, with MJ chowing-down on roast leg, while I feasted on herby sausages and black pudding. It was the kind of lunch that should have been followed by a nap, rather than a eight-mile walk through the cultural high-spots of Edinburgh’s wild west, but it fuelled us all the way home, so job done.
Our latest stop saw my porridge cherry finally popped, early one Sunday morning at Hula. It was extremely tasty, topped with blueberries and honey, and the portion size was very generous. I now have a box of the oatey goodness, with a cheery smiling Nick Nairn on the side, sitting in my kitchen, for home experimentation to find my optimal topping combination.
It was a rare treat to start the day with such fine coffee, too. There is simply no doubt that Hula serves the best coffee that we’ve yet found in this lovely little city of ours. If coffee’s your thing and you haven’t visited yet, you should make it your business to rectify that situation, immediately.
The excellent Chris MacKenzie has recently taken some lovely photos of the Hula porridge, as well as their other tempting treats, so pop over to Hula’s Facebook page and take a look.
So it’s barely two months to go until the walk itself. In an unusual development, we’re going to be joined by the lovely Gail Porter on our walk. This should make reaching our fundraising targets a little easier, and I’m sure it will be great to get
some celebrity gossip to pass the 20+ hours we’ll be on the trail.
If you’re feeling generous and fancy supporting our endeavours, pop over to www.bmycharity.com/lunchquest and divest yourself of some of your well-earned pennies, all in the name of a very deserving cause.
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