Exclusively at Borough Market: Heaven

Behold the toasted cheese sandwich to trump all toasted cheese sandwiches: three slices of French sourdough melding with sharp Montgomery cheddar and a piquant melange of onions and garlic - generously buttered and hot-pressed to crispy brown perfection.

The sandwich looks ethereal wrapped in its white parchment - and the taste is exalting; so rapturous, in fact, I swear, you don't even care about the calories (and I always care about the calories).

Fortunately for my waist, this temptation is only available on weekends at London's Borough market - which, somehow, only makes it better.

The heaven-purveying stall also sells something called raclette: bubbling Ogleshield scraped onto a mound of boiled potatoes and gherkins.

But while the process of making this Swiss dish is more fascinating to watch, and ought to be tried, it's certainly the celestial cheese sandwich that entices everyone back.

Disappearing Black Forest Cake

There it is, the remainder of Kasey's Raspberry Black Forest birthday cake. A single disheveled slice to represent the creation that kept me industriously busy from the evening before her birth until well into the dawning of; ambitiously tempering of hundreds of ounces of dark chocolate to form the divine chocolate cake and sumptuous chocolate mousse - finally canvasing the cooled layers with a raspberry and cordial treatment around 4 am. (Why do I always wait for the last minute for these things?)

Actually, it wasn't till I was dashing to her party that day that I managed to slapdashedly concoct the white chocolate mousse frosting, topping the finished product with some lovely cream roses that I purchased on my way home from work, that it really all came together.

But ahh, the end-result was well was worth all the late-night effort ... and within an hour after this photo was taken, this last remaining testament of my work had also disappeared.

How Eccentrics Birthday Party

If you'd stumbled into Kasey's apartment during her "24-hour creative birthday slumber party" without any briefing or prior explanation the chaotic scene would likely lead you to believe you'd arrived in some sort of retro insane asylum or had become part of a trippy fantasy scene for the latest Michael Gondry film. Actually, without being intimately acquainted with the crowd present, you might still think as much even with being briefed!

The erratic night began with the dress code; everyone was to arrive in fanciful and slightly ludicrous clothing, the components of which were promptly switched with other guests' costumes at the door - then complemented with the donning an an outrageous wig.

Bosaina opted for black lipstick.

The above picture is evidence of how absurd things got: from left to right - Natalie, Bosaina, and Kasey - a Jew, a Muslim, and a Christian respectively - all singing "I'm a Little Teapot" in unison.

Below, Kasey striking a "Sylvia Plath" pose with her birthday cake.

Seeing the Horizon for the Trees & Glaring Sun

"Courage charms us because it indicates that a man loves an idea better than all things in the world, that he is thinking neither of his bed, not his dinner, nor his money, but will venture all to put in act the invisible thought of his mind."

-Ralph Waldo Emerson

Just in time for V-Day... Blueberry Pancakes for Virgins

Happy Valentine's Day! Oh, if only I'd poured the batter for these pancakes in heart-shapes, I would have had the makings for the perfect V-day post. As it is, I'm just happy I remembered to grab the camera and capture the last two pancakes that remained of the entire batch before they too were devoured with glorious drizzles of hot syrup.

I made these wondrously fluffy blueberry pancakes last weekend for my friend Rohit, who (gasp!) had never before tasted this quintessential American breakfast fare (forgive him, if his name didn't give it away, he's from India). Never fear, I did cuisine-Americana proud - apart from a few over-cooked edges they were practically-perfect: slightly sweet airy cakes zinging with succulent bursts of tart mauvy berries.

My only complaint is that the two remaining pancakes that were photoed don't quite reflect the batch's divine nature. Fortunately, Rohit says, for the sake of a photo-op, he's more than willing to let me make them for him again. As someone who deems most "western" fare bland, unappetizing, and wholly in need of chili sauce, I consider this an enormous compliment and evidence of just how good these pancakes were.

Anne Spice's Blueberry Pancakes

This is a fantastic blueberry pancake recipe - in league with even the best of your buttermilk variety, without the buttermilk (after all, who ever has buttermilk on hand - or can even find it in your local corner shop for that matter?).

The trick is making sure all of the ingredients are room temperature so that the melted better doesn't separate and solidify - I put all the wet ingredients in the microwave for a few seconds on low so that the butter would mix in smoothly. As they always say with pancakes: Do not overmix - just barely combine, lumps are okay! Cook on low heat (to avoid my burned edges) for about 3 minutes on each side. Enjoy!

3 tablespoons sugar
1 1/3 cups all purpose flour
2 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups plain low-fat yogurt
1 tablespoon milk
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons melted butter
As many fresh blueberries as you can pack in! (Aim for 2 cups)

Déjà Vu

London Fashion Week is here and Kasey is once again covering it for Fashion FM. This time around she got spotted by the London-equivalent of The Sartorialist: Face Hunter. See her sporting a cool feather necklace here - the fourth girl down on his February 11th post. I swear I wasn't the one who started saying she was my favorite of his picks for the day ... but I'm going to go leave a comment of that nature right now!