Laoise Casey, chef de partie at Paradise Garage, Bethnal Green, gives us a behind the scenes peek at the upcoming Blood Sugar event: a five-course dessert tasting menu on 12 June at Paradise Garage.
It seems that more and more every time I read the paper or flick through my Instagram and Twitter feeds I’m being told what I should and should not eat. Clean eating hashtags make me break out in a nervous rash. Once upon a time, I made a kale smoothie which I then promptly turned into a kale soup laced with double cream, parmesan shavings and chunks of toasted bread to recover from the experience.
While I do appreciate the virtues of healthy eating I firmly believe that food is to be enjoyed and eating should itself be a joyous occasion. As a chef, I think that’s the type of food you want to cook – the sort that people will take delight in. As Oscar Wilde put it “Moderation is a fatal thing. Nothing succeeds like excess”. Sometimes you just need to throw kale smoothies to the wind and treat yourself. Like, for instance, having a five-course dessert tasting menu: welcome to Blood Sugar at Paradise Garage.
With not a chia seed in sight. Blood Sugar is an event to remind us that eating is supposed to be fun. In the kitchen on the night will be chefs from Paradise Garage Kira Ghidoni, who has worked at some top London restaurants including Fera at Claridges and Angela Hartnett’s Murano and Eloise Dawes, formerly of Arbutus. I’m lucky enough to be cooking with them too.
Blood Sugar is designed to, well, raise your blood sugar levels with a dessert tasting menu with matching cocktails by Cristian Ariza. Don’t worry if you have a savoury tooth; the menu includes some savoury snacks too.
I’ve had a sneak preview of the menu for this one which includes chocolate sourdough, cheese marshmallows, pesto ice cream and a camomile milkshake. For the grand finale, Eloise and Kira have created a main dessert served on the table involving flowerpots. I’ve sworn a solemn vow of secrecy and can’t reveal any more. Blood Sugar is about celebrating indulgence and creating magic in eating. It’s a menu that is going to be lots of fun to cook and also eat. A little bit of kitchen magic.
Blood Sugar Part Deux takes place at Paradise Garage on 12 June at 7pm. Tickets cost £55 and are available to purchase by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Laoise is a chef de partie at Paradise Garage in Bethnal Green and the author of cuisinegenie.ie. In a former life, she used to be a HR Manager, she has now happily abandoned the corporate world and spends her days cooking/eating. She also works as a freelance journalist and writes the London Lunch Box column for the Evening Standard. Follow her on Twitter @cuisine_genie and Instagram @laoisecooks.
Photos by Felicity Spector from the inaugural Blood Sugar event at The Manor with Adam Degg (Head Pastry Chef, Chiltern Firehouse).