Monday, 25 April 2011

Supperclub: Recipes and notes from the Underground restaurant

 Kerstin Rodgers, aka Ms MarmiteLover, is a firm favourite of mine, feeding guests from her kitchen table, hosting fantastically themed events and sharing her cooking and crafting knowledge from her home in Kilburn. Years spent running her Underground Restaurant as well as visiting supperclubs around the world have culminated in this beautiful book, a must-buy for all foodies.I'm going to be a really lazy writer and just quote India Knight who put it better than I ever could when she said;  'Supper Club is written by a proper, joyfully greedy girl (I mean that as the highest compliment) who really knows her stuff. It all sounds delicious - robust, non-poncy, just really good food'
Kerstin stepped away from the aga for a few minutes to answer some questions about the making of the book, and her dream meal.

When did you first start holding dinners at home?Was it a conscious decision to start a supper club?
I started in January 2009. I'd been to Cuba and seen the paladares...home restaurants and thought this would work well in London.
You've visited supper clubs around the world- which was your favourite?
Yes although I've visited supper clubs around the world, one of my favourites was held above a betting shop in East London. It was a Texan lady who grilled steaks (tuna steak in my case) on her barbeque on the roof top. The food was delicious but simple, her hostessing was great, friendly and relaxed. I prefer that to somewhere with poncy faux michelin star food to be honest.
Did you always plan on writing a recipe book?
I knew as soon as I started that there was a book in it. So the book is a third my story, the story of supperclubs and the rest is recipes. I think it's more than just a recipe book, there is a 'journey', a trajectory, a philosophy and the seeds of a movement.
Who taught you to cook?
My mum and all my boyfriends mums (who were mostly French).
What would you request for your last meal?
My last meal: spaghetti with good Italian tomatoes, lots of garlic and olive oil. A green salad with walnut oil and lemon juice. Good heavy oaky red wine. Cheeses: blue, cheddar, brillat savarin and goats cheeses. Great sourdough bread. Pavlova. I'm a peasant at heart.
'Supperclub' honestly has everything I could want from a cookbook, that is:
  •  Great recipes for varying levels of skill and investment, from marmite on toast with crispy seaweed to mint and white chocolate ice-cream.
  • Lots of interesting witty writing thats not all recipe orientated- in this case tips on running a supperclub and tales from Kirsten's own experience of doing so. 
  • Beautiful, inspirational photographs of both the writer's cooking and also her home, which really makes you feel like you get to know her personally
  • Lovely artwork other than the photographs- including great typography and illustrations which really add to the samples of Kirsten's 'themed menus' -including an Elvis menu (think deep fried peanut butter sandwiches) and a 'flower menu' featuring edible flowers and decorative gems like this floral ice bowl.

The Underground Royal Wedding Banquet  has sold out, so get your tickets for The Underground Night market on 6th May instead.

1 comment:

theundergroundrestaurant said...

Thanks katie for writing about my book! You've been a stalwart of The Underground Restaurant since the beginning!

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