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Simply the Best Meals


A page started in 2006 and inspired by some of the mouth watering meals Team Paradox has been lucky enough to find


Books about Italian (and other) Food and Cooking


Truffle Festival Pages


Back to Paradoxplace Food Pages



Padstow, the Dom reseduced by Rick Stein Nick's Australian Autumn Prawn BBQ
Sunday Roast at the Castle Inn, Chiddingstone Falmouth, Rick Stein and an Oyster Festival
Seafood Platter at Stefano, South Florence Panna Cotta in Volpaia, Chianti
Black Truffle shaved over Onion Rissole - Lamole White Truffle shaved over Risotto - San Giovanni d'Asso
Castellina Winter - Roast Pigeons and Roast Chestnuts Pasta and Seafood in Venice
Alba October 2007 - More White Truffles San Giovanni d'Asso Truffle Festival November 2007

Dinners in the (almost) Auvergne

Lentils in le Puy-en-Velay
Foie gras, oysters, crays and scallops in Poitiers
Mussels in Le Mans and Otranto Aligot in Nasbinals
Fig Tart in Fontevraud Sunday Lunch in the Loir Valley

Burgundian Working Lunch with Chablis 1er Cru

The Full Double Monty in Buffon (Burgundy)
Truffle and Parmesan Cheese shaved over Roast Pheasant - Alba Tartufo Bianco in Alba (2006)

Buen Pulpo Gallego - a signature dish from Santiago de Compostela

Seafood in Southern Italy and Kent

Panforte Margherita in Siena

Roman Style Oxtail at the Trastevere house of  "La Fornarina"

Mozzarella di Bufala in Lecce

Giant Portuguese Prawns in Salema

Zabaglione in Pienza

Jamon in Andalucia



May 2014

Padstow, the Dom reseduced by Rick Stein




Nick's Australian Autumn Crunchy Prawn BBQ - May 2013



Team Paradox's first English Food Festival - Falmouth (Cornwall), October 2011



Battered Monkfish et al done to perfection at Rick Stein's Fish and Chip place in Falmouth, where the annual Oyster Festival happened in October 2011












Paradox and son Nick (centre) enjoy the excellent rare roast beef and Yorkshire Pudding washed down with a drop of Burgundian Fleurie, at their Euro 09 Farewell Sunday Lunch at the Castle Inn, Chiddingstone (Kent), whilst son James, about to move to Washington with the BBC World Service, finishes on an Italian note with Cannelloni.  Post Code TN8 7AH if you want to use the sat-nav!  Note that the Castle Inn has changed owners since our visit.


November 22 2009









Volpaia, Chianti (Tuscany)



Panna Cotta con Frutti di Bosco at Volpaia



July 2007





Gregory and Stefano



Seafood extravaganza at da Stefano, South Florence


November 2007





Onion rissole with truffle sauce and shaved tartufo nero


Ristoro di Lamole, nr Greve, Tuscany


November 2007









Risottino Mantecato al Tartufo Bianco delle Crete Senese


Ristorante del Castello, San Giovanni d'Asso, Tuscany


November 2007



Seafood Pasta, Venice, San Toma




Venice is even more difficult than Rome to find satisfactory eateries in that don't break the bank!


Above is a moreish seafood pasta number served at the friendly Trattoria S Toma, Campo S Toma (near I Frari).


On the right a signature Venetian dish - cuttle fish cooked in their ink ("Pasta con il Nero di Seppia") - served in the dal Vecio Squeri restaurant which is in a deserted backstreet area near the beautiful little Scuola di San Giorgio degli Schiavoni.  Not as attractive visually but a winner on the palate. 


June 2004


Pasta con il Nero di Seppia



Roast Pigeons Tuscan Style

Photo:  Nick Fletcher


Roast Chestnuts in Castellina-in-Chianti


Castellina-in-Chianti - Roast Plump Pigeons for guests at casa Gregory, and roast chestnuts for townspeople watching the anniversary parade and march of the 150 year old the town philharmonic band on a November evening 2007.


Truffle Festival Food, San Giovanni d'Asso



Truffles, sausages and garlic rubbed toast at San Giovanni d'Asso (South Tuscany)



November 2007



Hunting Truffles, San Giovanni d'Asso, Tuscany



Tajarin Pasta tossed in butter and asge - Osteria Nuova, Alba, Piemonte



Osteria Nuova, Alba, Piemonte



Team Paradox returns to Alba (in Piedmont).  Sunday lunch at the Osteria Nuova.



October 2007



Le Puy Lentils, Le Puy-en-Velay



Green Lentils in le Puy-en-Velay



October 2007



Le Puy-en-Velay









Sausage rests on Aligot in Le Bar de la Route d'Argent in Nasbinals

(on the pilgrims' road from Le Puy to Compostela via Aubrac)


Aligot is mashed potato blended with melted Tome or Cantal cheese, plus garlic and butter.  It is a speciality of the area around the southern Auvergne, and actually dates back to before the arrival of the potato in Europe (late 1500s, though for another century or more, it was regarded as fit only for animals) when its place was occupied by bread.  Eating a plate of aligot in a steamy crowded bar after being chilled by the icy winds of the Aubrac pass must have been a special moment for medieval pilgrims - it was for Paradox anyway.


For Les Anglais, Delia Smith recommends 450g of Desiree or King Edward potatoes, and 225g of Lancashire cheese plus garlic, butter, salt and pepper. 


Here's a recipe from Australia - there are dozens more on the web, plus videos showing its tactile qualities - and if you're time or talent challenged and live in the Land of the Free, you can get it dehydrated in a box made by Lutosa !


October 2007



Magret de Canart, Hotel la Riviere, Entraygues-sur-Truyere



Magret de Canard and other dinners at the


Hôtel la Rivière - Entraygues-sur-Truyère



October 2007








Foie gras, fines de claires no 3 oyster plate and a delicate cray / scallop mix in Poitiers


Link to Poitiers page







Fig Tart, La Licorne, Fontevraud



Scampi Salad, La Licorne, Fontevraud



Lunch at La Licorne, in the village of Fontevraud.  Fig tarts are pretty pervasive in French restaurants, but we have never tasted one as good as this.  Likewise the Scampi Salad (left) and Pigeon en Croute justified the aperatif, bottle of excellent red and whatever desert wine followed!


A couple of Ks west towards Saumur (on the Loire Valley at Turquant) there is L'Hélianthe Restaurant Triglodytique, which is energetic and fun.  Hélianthe means sunflower and Triglodytique does not describe the food but the fact that the restaurant backs into a whitewashed cave area, as do many houses and weekenders (and of course wine caves) in several areas of the Loire valley.



September 2007



Moules a la Creme, Le Mans



Lunch at Le Plongeoir ("the diving board") in Le Mans, after a morning with the angels in the cathedral.  Everywhere in France offers moules (avec frites).  As you would expect there are moules and moules, and these plump beauties in Le Mans won the top prize on our 2007 road trip.


September 2007




Southern Italy also has plentiful Cozza offerings, though here they are more often seen with tomatoes and never with the frites.  On the right is a plate from a 7 course degustation seafood lunch at Massimo Panareo's Ristorante Vico Lopez next door to the Cattedrale di Santa Maria Annunciata in Otranto (Puglia) - that's the one with a floor completely covered with narrative mosaics originally laid in the 1100s.


November 2006



Cozza Sicilian - Sicilian Mussels



Scallop mousse with lobster sauce



St-Jacques des Guérets in the Loir Valley



Lunch at the Cheval Blanc - opposite the tiny painted pilgrimage church of St-Jacques des Guérets in the Loir Valley



September 2007



Chablia Premier Cru and Burgundian Terrine



A Burgundian country lunch at Le Moulin de Pontigny in Chablis country near the only surviving foundation Cistercian Abbey Church.



September 2007



Cistercian Abbey of Pontigny, Burgundy\



Foie Gras with apple, Le Marronier, Buffon



Buffon in Burgundy



Back at Le Marronier in Buffon (North Burgundy) for Sunday (and Monday) lunch - starting with melt-in-the-mouth Foie Gras (poêlé aux pommes) - French provincial cooking at its best.



September 2007




Shaved Parmesan, Black Truffles, Roast Pheasant



Pranzo Degustazione at the The Ristorante Al Vecchio Tre Stelle (Frazione Tre Stelle, 21/23, nr Barbaresco; Tel 0173 638192; web site; cl Tuesday), which is on the way from Alba to Barbaresco in Piemonte.  It's a Michelin recommendation so make sure to book.  They also have a small albergo.



Link to Paradoxplace October and November 2006 Alba Foodie Photos




October 2006



Barbaresco wine



White Truffls shaved on pasta, Alba, Piemonte



Alba Truffle Festival



Alba in Piemonte (NW Italia) - il paradiso dei buongustai - especially in October each year when the Great White Tuber (aka Tartufo Bianco) comes to town.  Mostly shaved over pasta (above) or fried eggs (left).



Link to tajarin tossed with parmesan, butter and sage at the Osteria Nuova, Alba - October 2007


Link to Paradoxplace October and November 2006 Alba Foodie Photos


Link to all Paradoxplace Truffle Festival Pages



October 2006 and 2007





Very very fresh and subtle crudo (raw) seafood at the Dom's new top Trani (Puglia) restauranT - THE OSTERIA CORTEINFIORE - (tel: 0883 508402), down the street to the north of the Templar Church of Ognissanti, and even in November overflowing with Italians on Friday and Saturday nights and some other times (so book).  The Italians do not obscure the subtle taste of raw seafood with strong additives like green Wasabi Mustard and Soy Sauce, or, God forbid, Worcester or Tomato Sauce.  There was also a warm seafood starter which included breadcrumbed fish cakes made using baccalà (dried salted cod which is restored to health by extensive washing in water and eventually milk) - mouth watering. 



November 2006


On the right - a traditional English seaside experience - raw Cockles with vinegar at Folkestone Harbour (Kent).


July 2007


Cockles, Folkestone


Buen Pulpo Gallego, Octupus Santiago Style



Los Sobrinos, Santiago de Compostela



In the early summer of 2006, we were sheltering from the 24 / 7 wind and rain and sampling the cuisine of the attractive pilgrimage town of  Santiago de Compostela in NW Spain - lots of hearty soups and casseroles with ingredients such as turnip tops and pigs' knees (and the inevitable egg floater).  And, of course, seafood - including scallops, mussels, Atlantic fish and ......


Buen Pulpo Gallego - boiled octopus garnished with oil and cayenne pepper - in the Bar Los Sobrinos del Padre - "La Casa del Buen Pulpo" - run by Juan Masejo Rey and his son (also Juan) - dad shown temporarily without cigarette and complete with "pencil on marble" tablet bill computational technology.  They are closed on Mondays.


If you really want to do it like the natives, you also need the ceramic wine bowl.


May 2006



Roman Oxtail, Restaurant Romolo, Trastevere



Rome - Roman Style Oxtail - one of the traditional blokey Roman meals - this one served in the garden restaurant of Romolo, which is (just) in Trastevere (above the Ponte Sisto) and used to be the house of the family of "La Fornarina" - the baker's daughter who was Raphael's mistress. 


October 2006


La Fornarina, Mistress of Raphael


Panforte Margherita, Nannini, Siena




Siena - the Campo and Palazzo Pubblico



Back in Siena - part of the mouth-watering display of local goodies in Nannini, the most famous of the many Sienese paradises for those of the sweet tooth.


Link to Paradoxplace Siena Pages


July 2005



Giant Prawns, Salema, Portugal



Giant prawns at the Boia bar and restaurant on the beach  at Salema, the last fishing village left in Southern Portugal.  Right - view from restaurant table.


May 2006


Beach at Salema, Portugal



Mozzarella di Bufala, Lecce, Puglia





Feast your eyes on this Insalata Caprese (for size understanding, it's on a large dinner plate) and in particular the Mozzarella di Bufala ... A close to divine offering from the Trattoria San Carlino in Lecce's main drag.  The Mozzarella di Bufala in this neck of the woods is as good as it gets.  And the balcony corbels in Lecce are something else as well!


November 2006


Link to Puglia Restaurant Notes



Andalucian Jamon (Ham)




Even an Italophile like Paradox has yet to taste a Prosciutto which comes within a pig's grunt of good Spanish Jamon.  This plate was consumed with bread and wine in the heart of Spanish Jamon country - Arcena in NW Andalucia (also the birthplace of Rio Tinto Mines).


And if you are in Granada, visit our new friend at the Casa Enriques Taberna (right).


May 2006 



Adrian Fletcher in Casa Enriques Taberna, Granada



Zabaglione in Pienza



La Terrazza del Choistro, Pienza, Tuscany



A freshly made warm zabaglione at


La Terrazza del Choistro, Pienza


"Nothing in the Dom's taste and texture archive compared with this warm drop of heaven"


November 2006 




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