Monday, 30 April 2012

Hudson's Cakes & the best book group idea EVER!

You know how I pretty much can't cook? How a lot of the cakes I make even turn into swampy disasters? How IKEA tends to surpass me in culinary wonder? Well, you can perhaps imagine how anxious I felt at the prospect of going along to Hudson's Cakes in Kreuzberg on Friday night to join them for the most brilliant book group idea I have come across yet..... Cook Book Book Group! Or Cook Book Club as they call it because it's easier to say after a few beers, 3 soups, a main course, 4 desserts & coffee.

Hudson's Bakery, yum, yum. British tea, cakes and other things (and what lovely lights!)
So the idea is that someone suggests a cook book, and you choose something to make from it, then bring it along at the allotted time, and everyone tries a little bit of everyone else's, and then you all talk about the cook book. Doesn't that sound like far more fun than just a regular book group? Especially as pretty much everyone in Berlin can cook better than me. The cook book club has been running for quite a few months, and myself and Sarah from workingberlinmum have fancied joining in but have never been able to make it before this one. And this one was a cracker. The theme was 'Childhood favourites'. So that's chips and Creamola Foam, right? (I know, you'll never have heard of Creamola Foam, but give your stomach ulcer a treat and go and order some off eBay right now! There's even all new Irn Bru flavour, but I'd recommend the classics - the lemonade one was terrific. I used to think that there might not be a single natural ingredient in Creamola Foam it was that amazing.But I bet that's all changed now, progress, huh!)

Remnants of the Cook Book Club feast alongside what might possibly be me & Sarah's breakfast next Thursday

Getting back on topic, in all seriousness, I struggled a bit with this topic. I used to prefer skipping and playing with Playmobil back in the day and left all the cooking and bill-paying sorts of things to my parents. And when I think of what we ate when I was a child, the meal that sticks in my mind the most was that rabbit that my mum tried to get us to eat, and that's not a fond memory. There seemed to be a awful lot of chops in those days too. Until I came to Germany I can't think of the last time I heard anyone say they were "having chops for their tea". Not that I am spending my days engrossed in German chop chat, but I know they're eating them cause I've seen them. (in the shops that is, not hanging out of the Berliner's mouths).

No evening is complete without coffee and some photos.

So I phoned my dad, who's in charge of the cooking in my mum and dad's house. It didn't used to be that way, my mum did almost all of the cooking when my dad was out at work, but when I think of my mum's cooking I think of (a) that rabbit, (b) chops, & (c) coming home from school for lunch which was either a banana sandwich or Heinz tomato soup and homemade pancakes. The last one seemed like a good choice but I don't think I can get Heinz tomato soup here. Schade!

So my dad suggested two things: his cheese soufflĂ© which came from a recipe on a leaflet distributed in 1979 by the Egg Marketing Board. I love it, but it doesn't travel well on a longish ride on the U-Bahn, His other suggestion was broccoli & stilton soup. So I did that, except I used a Danish Blue cheese that turned out to be so overpowering, that I did the only thing possible and blamed my dad for it. Anyway, the whole evening was brilliant fun. We had tons to eat, and it worked out that we had a great balance of starters, mains and desserts to eat. Given that we didn't have much in the way of cook books to talk about, as most recipes came from mothers or other family members that had been passed on, we talked about a million other things instead. And it was all rather lovely and I'd very much like to go again! As a matter of fact, Sarah & I liked it so much that we're dropping by for breakfast later this week. Yum, yum, yum, though thankfully, we're not cooking.

If you are in Berlin you can find details of Hudson's Cakes & information about the Cook Book Club and other events they run on their Facebook Page


  1. This sounds like a wonderful idea indeed!

    1. It is. I am totally nicking it when I move back to Britain!

  2. I am certain I commented on this but clearly this is not the case. I want to start up something a bit like this for when B deserts me in the autumn... you will have to give me some tips!!

    1. It's such a good idea: I really think you should do it. You would LOVE it. And where is Mr Dietz off to???

    2. This information I shall relay forthwith in a less public corner of the internet. And I am totally going to do a cooking club thing, and I am going to make it so good that you cannot help but travel all the way down here for it from there. For all of them.

    3. Yay! I shall tell Stevie to look for a secondment to Rolls-Royce Wiesbaden right now!!


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