Easter Eating

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London's Best Butchers

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London's Best Butchers
London's Top Chocolate Shops
London's Food Halls
Fish on Good Friday
London's Best Easter Bakeries
Easter Foodie Events
Easter Foodie Events
 

 

Chocolate eggs, hot cross buns, simnel cake, fish on Good Friday and roast lamb on Sunday; food plays an important part of the Easter weekend celebrations. Here we run through the best places in London to stock your larder. Bon appétit!

 
 

London's Top Chocolate Shops

 

This Easter, if you really want to spoil friends and family, visit one of London's Top Chocolate Shops where everything is handmade and chocolate is elevated to an art form. Chocolatiers go the extra mile at this time of year. Pierre Hermé, for example, has a new Easter collection, available from 10th March until 6th April, which includes a limited edition L'Oeuf Galets, milk and dark chocolate eggs enrobed with praline noisette and chocolate Easter rabbits garnished with small Easter eggs. If you want a huge choice of Easter eggs under one roof go to Selfridges Food Hall where they stock exclusive brands like Pierre Marcolini, La Maison du Chocolat, and The Chocolate Society who offer an eye catching Blonde Chocolate Egg this Easter. London's well known purveyors of fine chocolates also featues experts like Paul A Young and William Curley who has shops in Belgravia and Richmond. Head to Notting Hill for Melt with its chocolate shots at the bar, a kitchen-within-a-shop, children's mini masterclasses and tasting sessions, and Biscuiteers who have personalised hand-iced Easter eggs as well as dark and milk chocolate eggs decorated with intricately iced colourful butterflies. And if these still haven't satisfied that sweet tooth, head to Roald Dahl's (author of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) favourite chocolate shop, Prestat. The colourful treats on sale here are also a firm favourite with the Queen, they even produce their own range of patriotic chocs in special honour of Her Majesty.

 
 
 

London's Best Butchers

 

Easter is a time when the family gets together and a roast is the traditional way to mark the occasion - a real feast after the period of fast during Lent. A leg of lamb is a popular choice, ideally slow roasted with sprigs of rosemary to bring out the flavours, served with roast potatoes, steamed veg and mint sauce. For the best place to buy your joint look to London butchers who only stock meat from animals which have organically reared and fed to produce a tasty, tender and more succulent end result. At Lidgate's, a family run butchers for 160 years, David and his son Danny (who is the fifth generation family member to run the business) source their meats from Judith Freane as well as other smaller organic farms. The Ginger Pig is just as fussy when it comes to the welfare of the stock they sell with lamb, pork and beef all reared on their own 300-acre farms on the North Yorkshire Moors. Allens of Mayfair, suppliers of choice for chefs such as Marco Pierre White, Michel Roux Jr and Nigella Lawson, is particularly famous for its game. Although you can order online, it'd be a shame not to visit the Mount Street shop which retains some of its original Victorian features and plenty of old fashioned customer service. In Barons Court, HG Walter has been consistently winning awards for their organic meats - and Londoners happily travel across town for their stuffed chicken breasts and minted racks of lamb. Or, for the chance to graze while you shop, head to Borough Market which, as well as a selection of baked goods and street food, is also renowned for its high quality meat, poultry and game. 

 
 
 

Fish on Good Friday

 

Many Christians opt for fish on Good Friday, a day of fasting. To get the catch of the day, London's best fishmongers head to Billingsgate Market at 4.45am every morning so, thankfully, you don't have to. Buzz words at Rex Goldsmith's Chelsea Fishmonger are 'line caught', 'non-destructive' and 'sustainable' fishing methods. Meanwhile, over at The Fish Shop at Kensington Place you can buy fish dishes pre-prepared at the Kensington Place restaurant next door. And FishWorks combine restaurants with a wet fish counter at the front of their three London restaurants in Marylebone and Swallow Street. Many of London's best fishmongers are family run small businesses which have been in the trade for years like Walter Purkis, which has its own smokehouse, built in 1880, and has branches in Muswell Hill and Crouch End. Paul Meek's Meek & Wild supplies responsibly caught fish to Highbury residents including Nigel Slater. In Chiswick, Covent Garden Fishmongers, was set up almost 20 years ago by Philip Diamond who now runs the shop with his son, Gary, and is an expert in the field. Any of these excellent fishmongers will happily supply you with the freshest fish for Good Friday.

 
 
 

London's Best Easter Bakeries

 

Treating yourself to some baked goodies has long been synonymous with celebrating Easter in the UK, where hot cross buns, simnel cake and Easter biscuits have become cultural mainstays of the annual food calendar. For the most lavish spread of Easter goodies you should definitely pop into one of the six Konditor & Cook bakeries in London. The highly respected cake specialists offer a gloriously comprehensive coverage when it comes to Easter treats, including perfectly formed hot cross buns, a hearty glazed Easter Stollen with almonds and cranberries, an array of bunny shaped gingerbreads and shortbreads, and some traditional Easter biscuits. They also host a number of Easter cake decorating classes and workshops at their Waterloo Cake School. Another expensive but good bakery for all sorts of sweet and colourful cakes is Baker & Spice, the more refined sister of the Patisserie Valerie chain. For French style biscuits and breads head to La Patisserie Des Reves in Marylebone, or Poilane in Belgravia and Chelsea. On a Scandi note, the Nordic Bakery in Soho and Marylebone serves up huge rustic sticky cinnamon buns. Back to a stronger Easter theme, the Euphorium Bakery sells delicious hot cross buns in its eight outlets across London; while Gail's always impresses with its tasty spread of cakes, breads and biscuits so should hit home with some traditional Easter offerings.

 
 
 

London's Food Halls

 

The food halls of Fortnum & Mason, Selfridges and Harrods are seen as the finest in London and rightly so. They offer a mouth watering selection of hard to resist foods - and often stock brands that you won't find anywhere else. But we also like Partridges and Whole Foods which has five branches stocking natural and organic food across London including large shops in Kensington and Piccadilly Circus. All of these food halls are far superior to your average supermarket and are the places to visit when you're on the hunt for fine foods - with each offering something slightly different. At Fortnum & Mason, for example, the famous hampers have an Easter theme - with baskets containing a leg of lamb, fresh rosemary, mint, a bottle of Rioja and a lavish array of chocolate eggs.

 
 
 

Easter Foodie Events

 

Further to stocking up on goodies from London's best specialist shops, there's also the chance to enjoy lots of food-themed events this Easter. Scottish pop-up Dram & Smoke have teamed up with craft beer company BrewDog for The Last Sipper, serving up a special six course Easter Sunday tasting menu of Highland classics paired with six BrewDog and guest beers. Over at the London Dungeon, you can visit the Death by Chocolate Victorian sweet shop. Run by notorious poisoner Miss Edmunds, the shop will tempt guests with a game of chocolate roulette. Will you get a sweet surprise or be left with a sour taste? The Forza Win team, meanwhile, are hosting their first-ever spring project, Spring Chicken. Taking place in Peckham, it will serve a five-course feast that's inspired by everything England has to offer in spring, with everything cooked on wood. Or, for some food for thought before you munch your way through those chocolate eggs, head to the Cravings: Can Your Food Control You? exhibition at the Science Museum.

 
 
Sophie Wallace

EDITOR

Sophie Wallace

31st August 2015

 

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