One of the best things to have happened shopping-wise in Leeds city centre this year, for me, has been the opening of the Le Creuset shop in the Victoria Quarter, especially after my favourite kitchenware retailer Peter Maturi closed down earlier this year. I’ve been a huge fan of the Le Creuset brand for years, and a frequent home user, having been given a set a cast iron cookware for Christmas years ago.
A couple of months ago I’d seen that Edd Kimber, winner of the Great British Bake Off (2010) was doing a baking demonstration at the store, and you could enter a competition to bake with him. I’ve never won anything so I entered for a laugh, then found out I’d been picked!
The aim of the demo was to show off the brand at what it does best; the pieces are workhorses, they are versatile, hard-wearing, and they last. Being so darn pretty helps too, and even though they do cost a few hard-earned pennies, you really get what you pay for! I wouldn’t do without my set and am always wanting to add to the collection.
Being the last person to help Edd, I was lucky enough to help with a couple of the dishes at the demo. Edd was full of helpful tips, the odd anecdote from GBBO, he was absolutely lovely and delightful. Being a local lad it certainly helped and it didn’t feel like a ‘celebrity’ was with us in the slightest. Watching him make Blood Mary muffins and a Caramelised orange upside down cake, which were both scrumptious, especially the cake. All this whilst having a bit of fun and banter with his assistant and local audience.
My part in the demo came later that afternoon, helping with his take on a Spanish tortilla, with chorizo and pepper, also a berry clafoutis. I’d made tortilla before, but never a clafoutis, it was so easy to make, and even better was incredibly delicious!!
While this was going on a bread was being made with cranberries, Cornish sea salt and rosemary, the proofing and baking all done in the same cast iron pan, it worked so well showing it off to a tee! I managed to get a slice before I had to leave, it was delicately aromatic with the rosemary and topped with butter you couldn’t go wrong!
I had a lot of fun that afternoon, whether it was watching, taking part, chatting about food, in particular with fellow bloggers Danielle Stott and Kay Brown who I bumped into at the event. I left with a few recipes to have a go at home, and also got my eye on a few pieces to add to my home collection. I’ll need to save up the pennies, but it’ll be worth it!
Thanks to Danielle Stott for taking some photos for me during the demo!Edd Kimber‘s new book Patisserie Made Simple: From Macaron to Millefeuille and More is released 16th October. Le Creuset 36 Queen Victoria Street Victoria Quarter Leeds LS1 6BE