Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Nando’s do pudding?!


When: 28/8/12

Background: Me (Amy), my housemate Amy and our good friend Sarah-Jayne, made an impromptu visit to Nando’s in the Bullring, Birmingham, to celebrate my return to my fluffy-residence (I have 3 foster cats… not just shag pile carpet), and the fact we are now all qualified! 3 LONG YEARS HAVE PAST! Open-mouthed smile WOO HOO! Naturally, in the pursuit of science(/my blog) we had to have pudding. I chose the main focus of this blog, and Amy chose Choc-a-lot cake, and Sarah Jayne chose White Chocolate and Raspberry Swirl Cheesecake. More on those later…

What: Carrot Cake served with Frozen Yoghurt

How much?:

What was Good: O.M.G. This carrot cake in my mind was the PERFECT carrot cake. I have never tasted a more finer carrot cake in my days! Not even my Grandma’s (don’t tell her please). The cake was so light it practically melted in my mouth, and the mixed spice was evident in a fine perfume that hit my taste buds in a sweet/scented/aromatic after note. There were chopped walnuts within that added a slight, hidden, treasure hunted crunch every now and again, and the texture of the entire confection was simply divine. There was also the PERFECT amount of cream cheese frosting. Normally when I have had carrot cake before, there has been so much cream cheese frosting that I have had to leave some scraped of disappointedly in my plate at the end. This cake was not one of those disappointments. I chose a relatively light main course to allow sufficient pudding room, and although I felt full and satiated after, I was not stodgily full or feeling sick. I would happily chose this cake again! It was an absolutely wonderful end to a wonderful meal! Thank you very much Aaron our polite and friendly waiter for light-heartedly accepting our indecisiveness(+ tipsiness I hasten to add)!

What was Bad:

The only thing I can find wrong with this dessert was the frozen yoghurt! I do not think,. sadly, that it complimented the dessert well, if anything it just made it a bit soggy, and was so cold it caught my sensitive teeth! Not good! Other than that I would happily give this dessert a 5 waffles! Open-mouthed smile




My Bosom Buddies also deserve a contribution. Amy, not me, obvioDSC00316usly, chose Choc-o-lot Cake, also with frozen yoghurt. It was similar to that experienced in Portmeirion. It was very very pretty. So pretty that Sarah Jayne actually “HAD” to taste before Amy had even returned to the table. It was rich and creamy, but the cake was moist and dense. She VERY much struggled to finish it, yes her and Stacey appear to be made of the same constitution! So me and Sarah Jayne were required to finish consuming the sweet sickly beast. She also found the frozen yoghurt an odd and unimpressive addition to the cake, and it would have benefitted from pouring cream/ice-cream much more. However, a positive of the cake was that it was rich in cocoa flavour, with the added depth and intensity that milk chocolate would have lacked. Overall she would give the over-indulgent pudding:


Sarah Jayne chose a White Chocolate and Raspberry Cheesecake. Being incredibly anti-fruit this was a risky move for her, but she was reassured by the very vfbkbjfriendly Aaron that it is in fact Raspberry sauce, not actual Raspberries. On arrival, I was a beautiful slice of cheesecake, with the contrasting colours of the burgundy raspberry sauce and creamy white of the cheesecake itself. However, sadly, for Sarah Jayne this turned out to be another disappointment. On tasting it myself I found the actual cheesecake mixture to have very little white chocolate flavour, and mainly was overrun with the taste of cream cheese. It was too rich after a deliciously comforting and filling main meal, and so sadly, will not be on my list of must have “Waffle-y Studendous” puddings. The base also was not up to standard, being slightly soggy almost in texture and consistency. Sarah Jayne was also saddened by the Raspberriness of the sauce, and so also failed to finish consuming her dessert. All in all, Sarah Jayne would give the dessert a sad:


If this blog had a theme tune…


Off topic, no this is not about a pudding I have nommed, but I believe that if this blog had a theme tune, it would go a little like this….

Copyright of Weebls-stuff

I do not know how many of you are familiar with Weebl and Bob. But they were a big source of entertainment for me and my school friends for a good 2-3 years of secondary school. To be honest I still will happily sit and watch their ever so obscure videos today. And “Waffles” just about sums up my feelings towards the waffley cakey chequered goodness.

Monday, 27 August 2012

Pudding Redemption


Date: 26/8/12

Background: First thing’s first, yes I (Amy) am aware that there is no cake, or in fact any complex carbohydrates involved in this pudding, which was quite a bizarre experience I can tell you! But after a week of complete over pudd-ing-dulgence it was a welcome chance to redeem myself with a light healthy fruity bowl of saintliness. As after all, what is a dinner without a pudding?!

What: Fresh British Raspberries and Strawberries with Lancashire Farms Probiotic Yoghurt


How Much?: Strawberries = 67p per serving (£2 per 454g punnet), Raspberries = 67p per serving (£2 per 200g punnet) (Tesco), Lancashire Farms Probiotic Yoghurt= 20p per serving (£1 per 1kg pot!) (Asda) Overall= £5 but only £1.54 per serving!

What was Good: It was so fresh! There certainly was no sickly stodgy cake-expansion feeling today! The raspberries were soft, melt-in-the-mouth tender, with their natural zingyness that catches your sour taste buds in a very pleasant way, but not so tart that you pull a ridiculous face like those on the Haribo Tangfastic’s advert. The strawberries were equally delicious! I don’t know about you, but when I am ambling leisurely round the supermarket, I will happily pick up a punnet of strawberries to inhale their perfume around this time of year, even if my student £1-an-item budget does not usually stretch to actually buying them. There is something about the combination of raspberries and strawberries that is a winner in my eyes. I think it is probably the texture differences- robust versus delicate. And the sinless probiotic yoghurt also meant that this is the first guilt-free pudding I have had in over a week which will also make my gut happy! The yoghurt was thick and creamy and complimented the fresh fruit well. And the price, although expensive in total for the ingredients, per serving it is a bargain!

What was Bad: Being a carbaholic I think perhaps some nice toasted granola, or even pumpkin seeds with some soft sultanas/raisins would have gone well with this pud. Mainly because that texture combo has always been a firm favourite of mine in the “healthier” pudding category! The yoghurt was nice, don’t get me wrong, but it was a bit too tangy for my liking, and I prefer the less viscous consistency of some other brands of natural rather than probiotic yoghurt. And sadly, I am not going to lie, if I saw this on a menu next to a Belgian waffle or chocolate brownie, however “saintly” I am feeling, I know my temptation would not stretch that far… But maybe that says something about me…


WAFFLEWAFFLEWAFFLEWAFFLE half Although it should probably be strawberrystrawberrystrawberrystrawberry half

strawbs and rasps

Saturday, 25 August 2012

End of Holiday Scone


Date: 25/8/12

Background: End of holiday. Stopped at services with a Dobbies Garden Centre, naturally mother gravitated towards there like a moth to a flame, or like me (Amy) and Stacey towards a Belgian Waffle. I am ashamed to admit after accepting my parents kind offer of refreshment, I requested something more savoury- still emotionally scarred from the sickliness of yesterdays Muffin concoction. On return I was however presented with a Plain Scone with Jam and Butter. Alas, sometimes these things are destined to happen, like the Cake of Fate… You cannot escape what is meant to be and all that.

What: As mentioned, Plain Scone with Butter and Frank Coopers of Oxford Strawberry Extra Jam Conserve

How Much?: £1.70

What was Good: A nice freshly baked, homemade (or restaurant made) scone is often a winner, and this occasion was no exception. Being a (non intentional) garden centre connoisseur, Dobbies has never ceased to impress me with their scone-ability. They are big, with a nice crust, soft and cakey on the inside, but thankfully do not fall apart- the downfall of a lot of scones. Being a plain scone it was never going to hit me in the face with flavour, but it was a pleasant, and with the soft easily spreadable butter, and sweet seedy conserve (can someone please enlighten me as to what the difference is between a jam and a conserve?) it was sufficient to break the approaching hunger pangs and sustain me for the rest of the journey back to Rugby. Another good thing was that it did not give my teeth that bizarre “scone feeling”. Hard to explain but it feels almost as if, once I have eaten a scone that someone has put an invisible paste on the back of my front teeth and it is not an overly pleasant feeling. Regardless, todays scone did not give me this feeling! Oh and the cost (even though I did not pay) was very reasonable!

What was Bad: Given the choice I would have preferred a fruited scone, just because I really like the taste and texture that sultanas and raisins give, but I am not one to be ungrateful.  



2012-08-25 12.54.01

TIP: There is a 2 for 1 offer on all Scone’s with Jam and Cream, for £2.95 at the moment

Friday, 24 August 2012

Too Sweet, Too Sickly :-(

Date: 24/8/12

Background: The last official day of our holiday in Porthmadog, my parents (Honorary Blog Contributors) still hadn't visited Cadwalader's, the Ice cream parlour franchise, on the high street. So we all went to relive the moment that “Did Somebody Say Pudding?” was born… which was yesterday Confused smile.

What: Hot Muffin Sundae

How Much?: £4.50

What was Good?: It looks, and sounds divine! Who can possibly say that a hot muffin, piled with vanilla ice cream, hot chocolate fudge sauce and chocolate pieces, served with whipped cream and a “Cadwalader’s” wafer doesn’t sound simply marvellous? If you do not think this sounds stupendous then sadly I do not think we are on the same wavelength. The flavour of the sauce was nice and, as mentioned in our previous blog hot cake with a hot sauce and cold ice cream is usually a WINNNNNNNNNNNNNNING combination.

What was Bad?: As it turned out, this pudding was a big disappointment Sad smile. As the title suggests, the final thoughts of it were that it was TOO sweet and TOO sickly. There was a vast quantity of the sticky sauce, and as it was slowly solidifying due to the copious amount of cold ice cream, it became more of a difficult task to actually consume the monstrosity. There was an almost bitter aftertaste, speculation perhaps but maybe these muffins were shop bought? They certainly did not taste home made. In our opinion you would expect for a pudding costing nearly £5 that the main muffin-y component would at least be home made. The worst part was that even for myself (Amy) and my pudding veteran parents, the sickly feeling lasted for a good 2-3 hours and was so sweet that it gave at least 3 of us a ‘sugar hangover’. It was a pudding that we all struggled to finish.

2012-08-24 11.56.10fgfdgf

In Portmeirion? Raining? This calls for Chocolate Cake!


Date: 19/8/12

Background: For those who do not know: Portmeirion is a popular tourist village in Gwynedd, North Wales. It was designed and built by Sir Clough Williams-Ellis between 1925 and 1975 in the style of an Italian village and is now owned by a charitable trust. (Courtesy of Wikipedia)

Where: Caffi Glas, Portmeirion

What: Hot Chocolate Fudge Cake with Vanilla Ice cream

How Much?: £4.50approx

What was Good: It is in the name really. Hot. Chocolate. Fudge. Cake. It was a particularly rainy day in Portmeirion. We had walked the 2.5 miles from where we were staying on holiday in Porthmadog, and it had drizzled non stop the whole way. After an outside traditional rainy English (in Wales) picnic, we went to Caffi Glas for a coffee and to get out of the wet weather. Not that we need an excuse, quite frankly- who needs an excuse for pudding?- but me (Amy) and Stacey naturally felt it necessary and acceptable to have an ooey gooey pudding, after all “We are on holiday” [you will see a theme emerging]. It was a rich chocolatey chocolate cake and the hot chocolate fudge sauce had melted. The molten goo had started to ooze-ify the vanilla ice cream, which is one of the nicest hot-cold combos. The cake itself was nice and light with a “homemade” taste, lacking the chemically preservative essence some shop bought/packet mix/pre-baked cakes can have. Overall it was very satisfying if a little decadent.

What was Bad: On the sickly scale it is up there, and Stacey in fact sadly suffered from the sickly pudding feeling for the next hour. Amy however has a stronger constitution and did not suffer in such a dramatic manner Smile with tongue out  In the current financial climate it is hard to tell whether £4.50 is a lot to spend on a pudding? Which begs the question, blog readers out there- what are you willing to spend on a pudding? And I suppose, once you have had one hot chocolate fudge cake and ice cream, you have had them all.






Posh Puds


Date: 1/8/12

Background: Basically, Stacey is a techno-genius, she has been involved with Samsung since 2010 and writes reviews of Samsung gadgets, and attends events as a representative for them, as well as blogging (plug plug www.staceysamsungmobiler.blogspot.com) and working as a “mobiler”. For all her hard work for them, Samsung were kind enough to give her and a companion *excited bobbing from me (Amy)* the amazing opportunity to stay in the Landmark Hotel, a prestigious 5* hotel near Marylebone Station, and attend lots of London 2012 Olympic events and other fun things. On our last night we were invited to a VERY posh dinner (haute cuisine… never experienced it before and probably never will again!) in the hotel, comprising of a posh starter, posh main course, posh pud and posh Petit Fours. This blog is obviously discussing the posh posh pudding we were given.


Where: The Landmark Hotel, London

What: “A Tasting of Berries” (Blueberry Bakewell Tart, Lemon and Raspberry Posset & Lime Iced Parfait)

How much? Luckily for us, FREE

What was Good: The presentation, as you can see from the picture, was absolutely amazing. The kind of which you only ever see in movies or on the tele! If looks were everything then this dessert would get 5 waffles! There was a nice theme, food with themes always appeals to us, it shows that lots of thought and effort has gone into creating the pudding, and this was very apparent. The taste was, nice, I wanted it to be absolutely astronomical, but sadly it was not. However, when you take everything into account, the location, the company, the entire experience, it will be something that we will personally always remember!

What was Bad: (Amy) I think that the posset did not have a favourable texture, and would have benefitted from sharper tartness from the Lemon! I cannot claim to be a lover of blueberries either which again did not help my tasting enjoyment.





How does it compare?- Where it all began :-)

Date: 23/8/12

Background: This is quite an emotional *tear* moment. In Porthmadog, North Wales, me (Amy) and Stacey were on holiday with my parents. We had visited “Cadwaladers” on the first day of our holiday, but only consumed toasted sandwiches (yes I am aware these are not puddings… occasionally we have to eat savoury things by order of our pancreases) despite Cadwalader’s speciality being ice cream. On the Thursday of our holiday Stacey and I chose to have some pudding bonding time. Yes it was midday, yes we had only had breakfast an hour before, but after all “We are on holiday”. We both wanted a Hot Muffin Sundae (more on that in a future post) but as they were so popular they had sold out- these must be some AMAZING sundaes *EXCITEMENT*. Stacey chose a version of our new favourite pudding, Warm Waffle Sundae, and I made the boo-boo of choosing a very boring ice cream and sauce combo ( which was not even good enough to make it into our blog). As I hope you have read, our Ultimate “Gold Standard” Pudding is the Cinnamon Waffle Crunch from Frankie & Benny’s, and so we were naturally making a comparison between the two and “rating” them. Thus the “Did Somebody Say Pudding?” blog was born!

What: Warm Waffle Sundae

How much?: £4.50

What was Good: I think the mere ergonomics of Belgian Waffles creates the perfect shape to be served with ice cream and sauce. The little square sunken pits of happiness and joy within the cakey crispiness of the waffle makes the ideal space for the liquid melted ice cream to pool, so that when you cut open the waffle with your spoon it all oozes out. We watched the Cadwalader clan making the waffles on a waffle iron and so we knew that they were fresh. The caramel sauce was lovely and sweet, as you would expect, and complimented the dessert well, being soaked into the cakeyness like a sponge. The price in this instance was probably reasonable! Overall, although it did not quite match up to the “Gold Standard” pud, it certainly came close!

What was Bad: With there being 3 scoops of ice cream, Stacey found that actually it cools the warm waffle down too quickly, and so perhaps it would be better with just 2 scoops? Also, although the waffle was very tasty, chewy yet crispy, golden and wonderful, the Frankie & Benny’s creation still won in our opinion because it had the added flavour of cinnamon, which this pudding lacked. We also found that the squirty cream addition was pretty, but was too rich and did not offer any really flavour to the dish in general. Stacey thinks it should be perhaps pouring cream? What do you lovely people think?


(I feel as if I have seen this picture before……)