Category Archives: steak

Street Feast VII @Belgrave Music Hall & Canteen, Leeds

The second weekend of each month always signals the return of Belgrave Street Feast! I’m sure regular readers know the drill by now, but just in case you don’t this is the deal; independent street food traders from Leeds and its surrounding areas come and feed the masses. There’s always a host of Belgrave regulars doing what they do best, such as Dough Boys, Patty Smith’s, Laynes Espresso, Fish&, Wilson’s Champions Pies. But what draws me back is the variety of new traders they entice each month.

With the other half in tow the aim was to share everything, mainly so I could have a taster of as much food as possible!!!

First course – returning to the Belgrave was Arepa!Arepa!Arepa! who took street feast by storm a few months ago with their brilliant Arepa. They may not be new to The Belgrave, but even the slightest hint that they were returning made them an absolute MUST for me. 

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Butifarra 

One of the best things about the Arepa is the difference in textures – crisp on the outside (courtesy of the hot plate) and soft on the inside, filled with tender pork, which had bags of flavour. It’s basically a delicious handful and even though it’s inevitable a mess is made whilst eating them, it’s well worth it!

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Complimentary lollies!!

Second course – Chaat Cart, we are very lucky in Leeds to have Manjit’s Kitchen, so for me this was always a bit of a comparison to see their take on it. I went for the Samosa Chaat; don’t get me wrong I liked it, but for me it was lacking a little something. I missed a little kick of heat, cool yoghurt and a sprinkling of crisp sev providing texture.

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Samosa Chaat
Samosa Chaat

The Moocher provided us with our third course, after a little research I found out they’re known for being keen foragers and this was reflected in the Ox heart dish which included wild garlic flower. But it was the beef and venison which sang out to us, opting for £3 portions as we were slowly filling up, good job too as they were generously portioned up!  

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Pulled venison
Black IPA beef brisket with celeriac croquette
Beef brisket and celeriac croquettes
Chipotle chilli pulled venison with slaw

It was basically a flatbread sandwich filled with tasty meat that fell apart with ease, and slaw added good crunch and helped cut through the richness in the meat. If I did have a niggle it would be the croquette, which could’ve done with being hot and crisp.

4th course – Fire and Salt BBQ the Taco took our fancy here and was assembled by opening a packet of Doritos, sliced lettuce and chopped tomato were dropped in, along with a squirt of their Jackalope BBQ sauce, then topped with four chunks of ox cheek. The meat was flavourful, but it wasn’t quite melt in the mouth, one of the chunks also had a lot of chewy fat still attached. I liked the tang from the BBQ sauce, whilst the lettuce and tomato did their usual job of keeping it fresh and light.

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BBQ Walking Taco
BBQ Walking Taco

The Caribbean Cafe were found on the roof terrace, these local traders are well known for their base in Kirkgate Market where they are dishing up flavours of the Caribbean. By this time we were pretty much done unfortunately, but I gotta say that the smell of jerk chicken on the hot plate was pretty tempting though!

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Noisette Bakehouse – I always have to leave with something to nibble on and as always the beautifully delightful bakes from Noisette Bakehouse caught my eye. Leaving with the almost legendary Sea salt caramel brownie and Sarah’s new Watermelon gin jellies!

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Watermelon Gin Jelly and Sea Salt Caramel Brownie

There are a couple of other traders who I should mention too, unfortunately I didn’t get chance to see them; Bare Plume and Flavours Found (who are also trading at Trinity Kitchen with Shake Maroc & Roll).

Next month it’s Beacons Festival I think, so I may see you there!

Belgrave Music Hall & Canteen
1-1a Cross Belgrave Street
Leeds
LS2 8JP
0113 2346160

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Belgrave Street Feast, Leeds

Belgrave’s Street Feast was back on the weekend, with the World Cup in full flow some of this month’s street food traders had embraced this with vigour, bringing the essence of South America to the Belgrave, using it as inspiration for their street food snacks.

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As always Belgrave’s in-house regulars were in attendance – Dough Boys, Patty Smith’s, Noisette Bakes and Laynes Espresso were doing their thing. One of the best things about street feast is always the mix of cuisines available in one place, with this in mind Belgrave’s food guru Ben Davy had drafted in a great bunch of traders to get your teeth into:

Hay having spent the last few weeks wowing visitors of Trinity Kitchen with their take on South American flavours, were now serving up their version of Chivito on the roof terrace BBQ. Chivito a national dish from Uruguay, consisting of a thin slice of steak  topped with mozzarella, tomatoes, mayonnaise. Not to be outdone there was also it’s meat-free counterpart, named Vegito with Portobello mushroom filling on the go. At the helm was Alice with her trusty side-kick Meg ‘sanga slinging’ to the masses into the early hours, whilst England played Italy in the opening match of the World Cup.

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Chivito
Hay’s Chivito

The Beasty Boys with nose to tail South American street food. Just from sampling a taster of their ham hock empanada, I quickly got sucked in to having a triple whammy combo of Chicken & Ox Tongue, Hare and rabbit, Smoked ham hock & pigs trotter! If that wasn’t enough it was accompanied by two different pickles, two chilli sauces, ketchup and chimichurri sauces- all homemade. Wonderfully light, flaky pastry and full flavoured meaty fillings really hit the spot. Nicely accompanied with a whole host of extras flavour and textures.

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Pickled black beans and spiced carrots
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The Beasty Boys triple Empanada whammy!

Afsaneh’s Kitchen had a wonderful array Persian food with a medley of dishes, such as a Mezze with Barbari bread, Persian Sandwiches filled with Saffron Chicken or Chargrilled Aubergine. Also a Chickpea stew with saffron rice. Everything looked so beautiful in particular the bejewelled bulgur wheat salad with pomegranate seeds and vibrant colour from the smoked aubergine, tomato and garlic dip.

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Asfaneh Kaviani

Le Petit Banh Mi – this French/Vietnamese duo had their yummy Banh Mi sandwiches filled with Pork, Beef or tofu, also the option for a rice paper rolled with any chosen filling. 

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Banh Mi Roule

Afrikhokho – Cocoa confectionary wearing its heart on its sleeve, its founder Chris was born and raised in South Africa and he’s used this as the inspiration for his business. Combining African recipes with a clever use of flavours, in particular cocoa they had an intriguing range of baked goods on display.

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Accra slice with bananas and almonds
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Brazil Arabica & Madagascan single origin chocolate loaf
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South African Melktert

Indie Ices – Mike Tattersall had conjured up a fantastic mix of lollies, ice-creams and kulfi, they all sounded fab, but the Cardamom and rose syrup kulfi sang out to me. It had a lovely balance of creaminess, a hint of cardamom and rose, not too overpowering and perfumey! The perfect antidote to the chilli heat I’d got from Jim at Grub & Grog Shop.

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Cardamom & Rose water Kulfi
Indie Ices – Cardamom & Rose water Kulfi

Pitta Palace – these lovely ladies were at their first street feast, dishing up Pittas ready to go with hot and fiery Piri Piri Chicken, Beef and chorizo stew, also Feta and olive or Falafel fillings.

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Pitta Palace

The Grub & Grog Shop  had ‘A taste of Brazil’ with Chimichurri steak skewers and Yuca fritters. I sampled a tasty skewer with its mega juicy steak, heat and a mellow chimichurri sauce. 

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The Grub & Grog Shop’s -Chimichurri Steak skewer sampler

Hepworth’s Deli had a glorious display of goodies, with a fantastical array of sweet and savoury treats, also a great pick & mix salad bar.

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Hepworth’s Deli delights
What’s your favourite street food vendor been so far, any you’d love to see for the first time or return to the Belgrave?
Belgrave Music Hall & Canteen
1-1A Cross Belgrave Street
Leeds
LS2 8JP
0113 234 6160

Blackhouse – The Grill on Newgate St, Chester

On what felt like the hottest day of the year so far, myself and nearly 7000 fellow runners stomped around Chester two weekends ago. It was the perfect weather for so many good things; a BBQ, day out, picnic or drinks in a beer garden somewhere, not so much for a half marathon!! Many of us suffered in the heat that was approximately 20 degrees in bright sunshine. Oh my, it was difficult, it felt so much harder than running the full marathon! Having drenched myself in bottles of water for most of the race, all with the aim of keeping myself cool I looked pretty saturated when I crossed the finish line. Myself and an old Uni mate had entered, being an elite runner he was twenty minutes ahead of me so once I’d finished it was time to refuel to replenish lost nutrients. The heat and blazing sun had really taken it out of me this time, so I literally just followed and wasn’t really bothered where we went, all I craved was a cold drink and something to eat in the shade, as by now I was ravenous.

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We strolled into the Blackhouse Grill, turning up at 11:30am and were luckily able to sit and have drinks, our food orders would be taken at 12pm. The menu is much the same as the Leeds branch, with steaks, burgers, salads, fajitas, fish and chips. Traditional Sunday roast was on offer too.

Myself and the other half went for the Steak frites, Pete the burger with additional mushroom and his girlfriend the Chicken Fajitas.
Both steaks were cooked perfectly, lovely and pink, it is a grill restaurant so it should be. Plenty of really good skin on chips were given, with a crisp outside and fluffy inside. They did get a little soggy though from the residual oil on the plate though, I think that would have been my only complaint. The steak itself was juicy and flavourful, the restaurant happily proclaims using premium quality beef that’s aged for 28 days ensuring flavour and tenderness, it definitely showed. 

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Oh yes, also the fact that myself and our friend both had loads of little bits of chips which made up the portion, especially Pete, when he tipped out the gimmicky frying basket full of chips, about half were really small off cuts, Pete was a little miffed!

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Pete admitted himself that he’s not the most discernible of diners, but when asked about his burger, he said it was cooked as requested and had good flavour to it. He did find the over-sized piece of lettuce and tomato a bit pointless, so removed them immediately leaving in the additional toppings of mushrooms and onion he’d ordered instead. 

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The chicken fajita looked and smelled great as it was brought over, still sizzling away on its griddle. It was an all-in-one cooking/preparation dish. Lots of additional bits like guacamole, cheese and pica de gallo on the side, a few warm tortillas wrapped in a napkin. One thing that was commented on straight away was the difficulty in constructing the fajitas, as they’d only left a knife and fork to use, no spoon so constructing the Fajitas was a task in itself.

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The chicken was cooked well, still moist and the sauce underneath had tonnes of flavour and I must admit it smelled fantastic. But there was nowhere near enough chicken or cheese to fill the tortilla so some wrappers were left unfilled.

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Overall we had a lovely celebratory lunch at The Blackhouse, The total cost for four people was £84, without tip. It sounds a tad steep considering we had just one course each but the wine was £19.75.

To be honest, I would have eaten probably anything after the race I was that hungry, but it was a decent choice. Considering Blackhouse is part of a chain and probably not somewhere I choose myself, it definitely has its merits and I would recommend it. It’s good for celebratory meals, family gatherings and the like. 

Food: A good choice, especially for meat lovers. 

Atmosphere: It was quiet when we first arrived, but while we were there it became much busier and the atmosphere improved.

Service: Pleasant staff, very welcoming and service throughout was good.

Blackhouse Grill
Newgate House
Newgate Street
Chester
CH1 1DE

The Blackhouse Grill on Urbanspoon

Steak anyone?

Miller & Carter steak restaurant recently opened in January (part of the Light) in Leeds city centre, I’d fancied going for a while so we went for a late Sunday lunch. The interior is lovely with brown decor and bare brick walls, art work of bulls covering the walls.

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The staff were friendly and we were given the choice of where to sit, so we opted for a table near the back of the restaurant where it was a little quieter.

The menu is divided into starters, steaks, other main courses and side orders. The steaks range from an 8oz rump (£12.50) to a chateaubriand (£41.95) to share. Other main courses include burgers, sea bass, steak pie and barbecue chicken.

We decided on a cherry tomato, mozzarella and rocket salad and duck rilette to start, then an 8oz fillet and sirloin steak with five mushroom chasseur. Steaks come with a wedge of iceberg lettuce and a dressing of your choice.

In terms of drinks, there’s a good selection of wine at reasonable prices, starting at £13. We ordered a bottle of pinot grigio which was £14.50, a jug of water and a coke.

The drinks arrived within a few minutes, I’m not a snob or anything but having worked as a waitress in a restaurant during my university years, I have the understanding that the customer is always asked if they would like to taste the wine before the first proper glass is poured. This didn’t happen and the waitress just poured our wine and walked off.

The starters arrived and looked very nice, my duck rillete was delicious, the portion size generous, the caramelised onions soft with a lovely tangy sauce which cut through the pate well. The ciabatton were warm and nicely toasted so that was a good start.

Duck rilette, slow cooked shredded duck  pate with caramelised onions and toasted ciabatton.
Duck rilette, slow cooked shredded duck pate with caramelised onions and toasted ciabatton.

My fellow diner’s salad was a bit nondescript, the cherry tomatoes lacked flavour, the mozzarella was soft and quite creamy, but still nothing special and they’d had much better in other establishments. The pesto dressing didn’t have much impact and could have been used more.

Cherry tomato, mozzarella and tomato salad, with pesto dressing.
Cherry tomato, mozzarella and tomato salad, with pesto dressing.

A few minutes after our starters had been taken away, the waitress brought us our iceberg lettuce wedges, the lettuce was crisp and they tasted nice with the different dressings. The garlic wasn’t too strong which is always a good thing and the bacon had a nice saltiness.

Iceberg lettuce wedge with bacon and honey mustard, garlic and chive mayonnaise with parmesan.
Iceberg lettuce wedge with bacon and honey mustard, garlic and chive mayonnaise with parmesan.

This increased our anticipation for the main event, even more so when I could see from our table the chefs working in the open kitchen. Our steaks arrived and looked great, and apart from the lettuce wedge all steaks come with fries, something called an onion loaf, cherry tomatoes and a sauce of your choice.

Both steaks were ordered medium rare, the fillet was cooked to perfection, the lightly salted fries were crisp and the onion loaf (a bit like an onion bhaji) was tasty and a good addition to the dish.

Fillet steak with fries, cherry tomatoes and onion loaf.
Fillet steak with fries, cherry tomatoes and onion loaf.

My sirloin unfortunately was very salty. This was really disappointing because everything else on the plate was very nice, even the mushroom chasseur was a good accompaniment to the steak. The quality of the beef was excellent so the issue with seasoning was a real shame!!

Sirloin steak, with garlic butter and mushroom chasseur sauce.
Sirloin steak, with garlic butter and mushroom chasseur sauce.

The waitress came over but I had already eaten a third, I know I should have asked for another one, but I didn’t want to wait and don’t think I could eat another 8oz steak. To check I even asked my fellow diner (who likes salt) to taste it and he agreed. I just cut off the top layer and ate what was very succulent and juicy. I did mention it to the waitress when she cleared the table though.

We ordered desserts (usually we leave out desserts but we still had room in our stomachs), a creme brûlée and caramel apple crumble tart with custard. The creme brûlée is a favourite and part of the fun is breaking open the caramelised sugar top, unfortunately the top was very soft and there was hardly any sugar on the top (as you can see in the photo). The brûlée underneath was tasty though.

Creme brûlée.
Creme brûlée.

My apple crumble tart was nice, the custard ok, nothing special though.

Caramel apple crumble with custard.
Caramel apple crumble with custard.

In total the bill came to £73.95 for 2 people, (3 courses each) including a bottle of wine. I am very undecided on whether it was worth the price. It wasn’t cheap and I was surprised they misjudged the seasoning so badly on my steak (considering it’s a steak restaurant) and also with the other errors with the food. The service was fine but could be fine-tuned. I’m hoping this was a one-off and they don’t make these mistakes a regular thing. I doubt I’ll be a regular customer especially with the competition in the city centre.

Miller & Carter
56-58 The Headrow
Leeds
LS1 8TL