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December 2012

Taste the sensation



Meet the team

Anisha Mahmood of Oakwood, West Yorkshire goes on a mission to find out the secret of Thornton’s success (p22) Join her for an insight into what makes their chocolate so great.

Most famed for her role as Leeds Metropolitan University Business and Law faculty officer, Jessica Balme has been investigating this years baking craze (p10). Here, she shares why cakes are in this year.

Page 5: Trinity Kitchen - New shopping centre and kitchen. Could we ask for more? Page 6: News Flash - The round of the month’s tastiest goodies

Page 8: Christmas is here We take a trip to the German Market Page 10: Eat Me! - A look at the bake boom of 2012 Page 14: How Many Flavours of Milkshake? Shake ‘a’ holic lets us

taste heaven Page 16: ‘I’m the girl that set the fire alarm off’ Emily Jamieson Page 18: Anams Vs. Mumtaz - Making two of the best Indian restaurants fight over the naans

Page 20: The business that began in a bedroom - Midnite Munchies cure our craving

Page 28: It’s now or never Fred Parkes talks Page 22: Thorntons Centenary about his exciting travels and tastes - 100 years of tasty treats Page 30: Lookbook - Check Page 24: out the baking bonaza Got what it cakes and drool over the - Shamalia Kauser pictures talks about the ingredients of success Page 26: Save you from spending more - The best loyalty cards and deals to help you scrimp

Page 31: Caramel Layer Cake - We leave you with pure indulgence in the form of four layers of sponge, caramel and chocolate

On the cover: Blueberry dazzle cake - images provided by Midnite Munchies


Welcome to

Follow us on twitter: @Flavours


If a heads-up on where to find the best food this year is at the top of your Christmas wish list, this issue of Flavours is just what you need. We’ve been everywhere this month investigating the best places for you to spend your money. To celebrate the festive season we’ve been down to the German Market checking out what they have to offer this year. We’ve talked to locals about what they sell and consume in Leeds and we’ve even fished out the latest news in all things food. You won’t be stuck for ideas this Christmas.

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Coming soon

Artist impressions of the Trinity Kitchen

We’re all excited about the new shopping mall set to open in March 2013 named Trinity Leeds. We’ve heard about its 120 retail stores and a lot of the focus has been on what stores will be featured in the mall, but what about food outlets? This month, Land Securities revealed plans to include a multi-million pound investment and unique new approach to food and leisure named ‘Trinity Kitchen’ opening right inside the mall. The unique Trinity Kitchen will offer cooking demonstrations, street food vendors, pop-up market stalls and diverse food choices all within a shopping centre environment for the first time ever. Showcasing local and national cuisine, Trinity Leeds will play host to

to the Leeds food scene

by Sophie Beaumont

one of the most unique food outlets in the country. Trinity Kitchen will even feature an indoor street food market showcasing the food of five pop-up food traders changing on a regular basis. The line-up of international food partners to sign up to Trinity Kitchen include Chicago Rib Shack, Notes, Tortilla and Pho all of which are coming out of London and the South East for the first time ever. This announcement by Land Securities has increased the presence of food and beverage at Trinity Leeds by 50%. Set to open in autumn of 2013, it will give shoppers a reason to

keep on visiting. Andrew Turf, Leasing Manager for Trinity Kitchen, said: “Trinity Kitchen will bring consumers a constantly evolving, eclectic and stimulating social hub – day and night – that will reinvent city living.” But for those shoppers who can’t wait for Trinity Kitchen to open its doors there will also be plenty of food outlets available at the food court. Some other restaurants who have confirmed a spot in the mall include Yo Sushi, Nando’s, TGI Friday’s, Giraffe and Wagamama. Not forgetting popular beverage retailers Starbucks and Juice Smoothie bar.

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Food news from around Leeds, the country and the world

Red Ribs: Meat lovers rejoice! Red’s True BBQ, next to the Corn Exchange is now open! Treating taste buds to fresh cooked ribs, tender meat and in a sauce of your choice, we’re in heaven. Ribs are smoked for 8 hours to give the true taste of the deep south. It’s slightly pricy, but perfect to a post exam/essay treat. And those Sweet Potato fries, oh my!

Christmas Cocktails: Our favourite bar Revolution have done us proud by creating a range of Christmas cocktails. We’re torn between Hot Voddy and Santa Baby, because it comes in a pitcher. You can try them for free, yes free, by liking the Revolution Facebook page to get a voucher.

The Big Knit 2012: Innocent Smoothies have launched their annual fund raising campaign in conjunction with Age UK. At any Sainsbury’s you can now get 330ml bottles of healthy, vitamin packed, smoothies adorned with a cute knitted hat! We have quite a collection already, it’s a shame some of these are only mini, we’d love to have a full size polar bear hat with its own scarf.

Salvo’s now takes bookings: Finished your essay, celebrating a birthday wanted to go to Salvos? Too busy to get seated? Fear Not! Now Savlo’s take bookings, there is no need for an awkward phone conversation you can do it online. Now your seat in heaven does haves your name on!

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News Red Cups: It’s cold, it’s windy, it’s rainy, which can only mean one thing – Festive Starbucks! Our favourite winter warmers come in Praline Mocha, Toffee Nut Latte, Eggnog Latte & Gingerbread Latte flavours. Forget the Coca Cola advert; you know Christmas is coming when you can get your hands on one of these tasty treats. Caffe Nero also offers an Amaretto Latte and Costa a Salted Caramel Latte.

O2 Priority Moments:

We prayed, and O2 answered. Eating at your favourite places, such as Dominoes and Barburrito has now become cheaper thanks to priority moments. Any O2 customer can download the app and access a range of exclusive offers which range from a free drink at Caffe Nero to 35% off the pizza bill. Thank you O2!

Advent Calendars: Oh, you’re never too old, and with impending deadlines who can forgive you for wanting a small treat each day. Whether you fancy Hello Kitty or Thomas the Tank Engine go out and get yourself and advent calendar. Our favourite has to be Thornton’s Continental advent calendar, because who says we can’t have a truffle a day?

M&S takes shelter: M&S have teamed up with Shelter this Christmas to offer a range of festive foods and cards. 5p from every sale is donated to helping support families who are homeless this Christmas. Whilst we’re not sushi people we’ve been stocking up on the turkey, cranberry and stuffing crisps, it won’t be Christmas forever and it’s for a good cause you know.


Gourmet health popcorn! Think popcorn is just for the cinema? Think again! Propercorn offer bags of the good stuff all with fewer than 100 calories. Flavours available are Lightly Sea Salted, Sweet and Salty, Fiery Worchester Sauce & Sun Dried Tomato and our personal favourite Sour Cream & Chive. You can find in around the city centre in Waitrose, Tesco and Harvey Nichols, which naturally you don’t need an excuse to visit.

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Christmas is here

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The new Bavarian themed restaurant ‘Alp Chalet’ opens it’s doors for the first time this year


Above and below Candy and chocolate on sale at Christkindelmarket

by Sophie Beaumont


his month the German Market is in town and we’re heading to Leeds city centre to find out what’s on offer for 2012. Christkindelmarket, the annual Christmas market bringing German traditions to Millennium Square is one of the largest and most established German markets in the UK. It often marks the start of Christmas celebrations for residents of the area as it arrives at the same time the Leeds Christmas lights are switched on. There are over 40 wooden chalet stalls to visit from authentic German traders providing a wide range of products and seasonal gift ideas for everyone. For all you food lovers interested in trying something different the German Market is the perfect place to pay a visit. Speciality foods and traditional German delicacies such as gluhwein, bratwurst sausages, goulash, soups, schnitzels, stollen, gingerbread and candied fruits are all brought to Leeds for a limited time only. New this year is Alp Chalet, the Bavarian style restaurant that seats 300 guests. With entertainment and Bavarian themed food and drinks on offer this venue provides you with a taste of Germany. Available for reservations and open for both lunch and dinner this restaurant even features live music to provide visitors with a warm atmosphere in which to sample the best in authentic German dishes. The menu features various hot and cold drinks with a large range of alcoholic beverages. Meals are high in price but there is a large selection to choose from and all in-keeping with the Bavarian theme. Juicy duck, Swabian cheese noodles, medallions of red deer and browned Bavarian meatloaf are just some of the things available to order for a main course. If you don’t fancy Alp Chalet then the popular Frankfurter-Scheune provides real German beer, an authentic German show band and a specialist food

menu. This restaurant offers less choice but dishes are much lower in price. Beef Goulash, crackling roast pork and bread dumplings are some of the things you can sink your teeth into here. A few twitter users share similar views on this year’s market and the food it has to offer. One user says: “The food and drinks are the best part but are quite expensive. Food and drink should be a couple of quid cheaper”. Another networker agrees saying “I look forward to the food there all year; Christmas in Leeds wouldn’t seem right without it”. And one user has noticed the market has made some changes saying “This year it seems like there are more food stalls than gift stalls and some of the prices for things are ridiculous”. It seems the German Market is now more focused on the food and drink element as other users touch on the fact it’s not great for handicrafts. The general consensus also seems to be that the costs of the products are too high. But if you have the pennies and a passion for good food then this year might be the best year to try out the market for yourself. So if your taste buds are tingling make sure you get down to Christkindelmarket to try some of the food on offer before it leaves town on December 16th.

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Eat me

2012 has seen many crazes, Gangnam Style, Instagram & Fifty Shades of Grey but one craze that has risen past the rest, making crumbs of the competition is baking. Recessionistas across the country have gone forth to the kitchen, spatula in hand and made baking one of Britain’s favourite past times‌.

Features Cupcakes By Charley - Leeds

By Jessica Balme


ike brandy to a Christmas pudding programs such as the Great British Bake Off & the Great British Menu have only fuelled this craze. Nearly 7 million people watched this year’s Bake Off season final which saw Brendan, James & John do battle over pithivers, fondant fancies & chiffon cakes with James being crowned the winner. Viewers also got involved, taking to twitter in their droves to tweet pictures of their own baking to eat during the show, using recipes from past episodes.

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With an all-male Bake off final, it is clear that men are beginning to take up the hobby. The 2010 winner of the serried Edd Kimber has gone on to be very successful, even releasing his own cookery book. Male orientated baking websites and blog such as MenWhoBake & BakingBoy are on the increase claiming equality in the kitchen. Though there are many male chefs there are few male bakers to match with men lacking baking idols, & Paul Hollywood not appealing to the younger generation.

Even the criminals of the country took to the kitchen in the series to earn money for life on the outside. Gordon Ramsey tried to take baking behind bars encouraging in-mates at HM Brixton to bake lemon slices to be sold at cafe chains such as Caffe Nero for his recent Channel 4 programme. It showed that baking could be a credible line of work, as he gave some of the prisoners positions at his restaurants. The economic recession has helped make home crafts such as knitting and baking more popular than ever. Parents have used baking as a cheap method of entertainment & often education for children, with ingredients usually already being available at home. Businesses have also seen a spike in sales this year, with Tate & Lyle reporting a 6% rise in sales for the six months up to September 30th. Independent bakeries have also sprung up across the country utilizing the nation’s perpetual craving for sweet products like cupcakes, macaroons & petit fours.

Features Local cupcake boutique Cupcakes by Charley in Queen’s Arcade Leeds has been treating hungry customers to tasty creations. With their inviting exterior and kitsch fittings they have gone from strength to strength after starting with one shop in the trendy Montpellier Quarter in Harrogate. Websites have offering baking hobbyists have now become ten a dozen offering everything from cake tins to edible glitter sprays. Anyone with a spatula and oven can also now create baking tutorials and upload them to YouTube, whilst a great many of these taste more mud than more-ish. For anyone who learns visually tips on icing and decorating techniques, especially for those petal perfect cupcakes! If you’re a keen baker it’s also a great way to make money by allowing adverts, which can be skipped, to be shown before clips. Verity Marsh, a mature student has loved the effects of the 2012 bake craze; she bakes in her spare time to relieve the stresses of everyday life. “I find baking really meditative

Homemade Treats

and calming – I get some time to myself to just work away at something, everything else in the world just disappears. I like that baking is a set pattern that works every time: A + B = C. There is also the connection I feel to my Mum when I bake, especially when I’m feeling homesick or nostalgic, it feels like I’m sharing my time with her. I prefer something homemade, I know where my ingredients came from and I know how my cake was made so I feel like it is better for me. I also like it when other people appreciate my gifts of cake.”

2012 also saw the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee & the Olympics, perfect excuses for street parties, if ever there were any. Over 2 million parties were held this summer for the Jubilee & Olympics with many more not being recorded due to lack of permits. Chris Gittins, Director of Streets Alive who provides advice on street party planning said: “Large Events are a traditional; excuse for a street party that started in 1919, and many women particularly have cherished memories of the one they had for the Silver Jubilee & want to give their kids the chance of having one.” Bristol, known as the country’s street party capital, usually has over 200 street parties a year. With the 2012 drawing to an icy close, and the country predicted to be leaving the recession behind, the baking craze is set to deflate, like an undercooked soufflé. Or is it? Because just one taste of butter cream, as light as air and as fluffy as clouds, will never be enough.

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How many flavours of milkshake? by Sophie Beaumont


o you ever notice shoppers sipping from pink and white stripy cups and find yourself wondering where they’ve got them from? Well, step into the Merrion Centre and you’ll stumble upon the only milkshake bar in Leeds city centre- Shake’a’holic. But this isn’t just any milkshake bar offering you the standard shakes; it has 175 flavours to choose from. Using high quality Blentec blenders, Shake’a’holic lets you choose exactly what ingredients you would like in your milkshake before blending it with their own uniquely developed ice cream to create the perfect shake. From popular chocolate bars to sweets, cakes, fruit, cereal bars and biscuits; you can choose from almost anything to experiment with flavours and create your own unique milkshake. One social networker describes Shake’a’holic as “a great place with absolutely amazing milkshakes!” Prices are pretty steep for a regular shake but there are plenty of deals Shake’a’holic has on offer to draw its customers in. Visit before 12pm and you can even get money off with the ‘early bird deal’. We caught up with Shake’a’holic’s Emily Furnival who told us the best thing about Shake’a’holic is that they only use high quality ingredients. She says: “We could charge a lot less for our shakes if we changed the ice cream used, but this is why our milkshakes are so popular because they taste great. We have developed our own ice cream with a unique taste and made it from only the best quality ingredients”. The Leeds store has been open since August 2009 and Emily has been there since

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the beginning. She told us more about what makes Shake’a’holic so unique: “We do a lot of work with charities and develop our own charity shakes which we sell for £3 and donate £1 from every milkshake sold to our chosen charity”. This month they are raising money for Teenage Cancer Trust with their Terry’s Chocolate Orange & Jaffa Cake shake. Amongst the many thank you letters from the different charities that decorate the walls, you’ll find the hall of fame. This features hundreds of customers who have been photographed in store or with the Shake’a’holic mascot Maggie Milkshake. Emily explains “We always aim to make an effort to engage with the customers to ensure they have a positive experience and receive great service. We don’t just want to make great milkshakes but we also want to make our customers feel welcome and come visit us again”. “We even have regulars that come in daily for their shakes” She adds. And those that do come regularly are able to collect stamps on their Shake n save card leading to a free large shake after ten visits; their way of rewarding loyal customers. Thomas Benton a student in Leeds says: “Shake’a’holic is amazing, I get one nearly every day when I go to college”. So why not pop down to the bar today and create your own answer to Shake’a’holic’s

The wide selection of ingrediants on display for customers to choose from all ready to be blended into a milkshake


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“I’m the girl that set the fire alarm off”

A Leeds University student takes us through living away from home, the dining, the drama and the disasters

By Jessica Balme

Name: Emily Jamieson Course: English Literature Average Weekly Spend: £30 Preferred shop: Morrison’s


mily is a third year student studying at Leeds University, though her course is quite time intensive she likes cooking after a productive day. She currently lives in halls with three other Leeds University Students, who share her space, her interests and occasionally her milk. “Living, and eating, away from home has been an interesting experience, the first few months were quite the learning curve, many questionable meals ended up in the bin. My flatmates weren’t that friendly either, one was unbelievable, I once made a salad and cooked a burger for tea, when I was just about to eat it my phone rang so I put it in the fridge and went to answer my phone in the room. I was gone no more than 10 minutes talking to my Mum and when I came back my flatmate was sat, with an empty plate in front of him. He’d eaten the food I’d just made for myself and left the cucumber! All he said to me when I confronted him about it was that I hadn’t put my name on it!” “Not all of my flatmates have been

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like that though, the people that I lived with in second year, and live with now, are fantastic, as we’re all friends we share the workload. If one of us is particularly busy we’ll try and help out by cooking them tea. It doesn’t seem like much but when you’re really stressed easing the pressure can really help.” “University is quite social, aside from going on nights out to Revolution; I find that I go for quite a few meals a month. When friends have birthdays, or we simple need cheering up we’ll often go for a meal. Sometimes it can be quite expensive so we look for places with deals.” Going to restaurants that have 2 for 1 offers or deals is a smart move. Emily saves enough money in two months eating out occasionally to fund a third month of birthday meals. Using deal websites such as Wowcher or O2 Priority moments means that you don’t have to compromise.

“Takeaways seem to be a student staple, and I’m not one to say no to a curry. In my first year I couldn’t cook anything more that pasta so I spent quite a few nights ringing in. It wasn’t too costly, I spent quite a few pounds a week, but I also gained pounds, in weight.” Take outs can be an appealing alternative, especially in the first few cold months of university when it’s your first time for living alone but while it might be a tasty comfort it can also be quite bad for your health. Choices such as steamed or boiled food are healthier than those that are fried. Emily tries to stick to her budget of £30 a week for food “It’s quite tight sometimes, but when you come to university it’s really easy to splash out. If you aren’t careful and don’t plan ahead you can run out of money very soon and then how are you supposed to eat. I know people at university who come in wearing Topshop and River Island and

Her housemates cook together, and ensure they all eat together.

Profile you think they must be rich, unless they have a job, but actually they’re barely eating anything because they can’t afford it due to spending so much on other things. Tesco might do noodles for eight pence, but that doesn’t mean that you can live off them. That’s not for me.” “The shops around Leeds are conveniently located, if I’ve been at uni a few of us will walk down to Morrison’s and do our shopping together, that way we can split a cab back to halls. I’ve learnt the hard way to make a list, otherwise I end up spending twice as much on stuff

“People at university come in wearing Topshop and River Island and you think they must be rich, but actually they’re barely eating anything. That’s not for me.”

like chocolate.” Making a list is a good tip, but it is more important to stick to it. Going prepared and focused means that you won’t spend anymore than necessary or feel guilty later once you’ve eaten all the biscuits. She knows that special offers can often be misleading and cost more in the long term “Sometimes when you look closely a special offer can work out to be less value for money than buying s standard product. And if you buy things on offers such as three for two you often end up spending twice as much money for things that more often than not you don’t need.” Supermarket promotions can often be confusing, take time to look at them and don’t be persuaded into buying into more than you need. Stocking up on bread that you can freeze might be advisable but stocking up on large bottles of milk that are nearly out of date is not, so look carefully!

Choc Fudge Cake

“It’s often tempting when you’re in university for the day to buy lunch or go out for lunch, especially when you’re busy around hand-in dates. I did this several times a week in my second year and it didn’t seem like much each day but when you add it up for the week and month it becomes quite expensive.” This is a dangerous trap that many people fall into, often grabbing a bite on the go may seem convenient but the cost soon adds up and over a year it can mean the difference between nothing and an extra pair of shoes. “This year I have changed, when I make tea or lunch in the flat, if I’m out the next day, I make extra to eat cold for lunch. You can spice up a pasta dish by simply adding some salad or vegetables so it doesn’t have to be boring.” She has a deep secret, and if people knew what Emily had done she’d probably lose a few friends. In December 2010, with snow on the ground and frost in the air, a terrible thing happened. Emily set of the fire alarm, twice, in one night. A whole block of students were forced into the cold, ears ringing from the shrill fire alarm. She’d been cooking a pizza and trying to write an essay at the same time, stupid, she knows. She’d gotten too distracted by trying to finish and lost track of time, when she realised and when to remove the pizza from the oven it was rather burn and set off the fire alarm. “I shut the pizza back in the oven, switched it off and went outside with everyone else. I think if they’d

have known it was me I’d have been lynched, it was so cold and everyone was angrily yelling. Later in the evening I went to deal with the pizza and set the alarm off again as the smoke had been trapped in the oven. If shame is a form of punishment then I definitely served my time.” Emily has enjoyed Leeds, Leeds’ nightlife, Leeds’ culture and Leeds’ food. She has learnt a great deal about living independently. “Many people say that the things you learn at university will help you in life, and they will, but when people say that I don’t think they always consider that it doesn’t specifically mean your education, it also means you learn a way of living, shopping, cooking and eating.”

Emily’s top tips for student living:

1. Always make a shopping list, always. 2. Share the burden, especially during assessment periods. 3. Look for deals and offers if you’re eating out. 4. Double check offers they’re often too good to be true. 5. Never bring your bank card on a night out. 6. Make lunch from leftovers – hungry shopping trips can be expensive. 7. Budget carefully, and stick to it! 8. Never forget what’s in the oven! December 2012 Flavours 17



By Anisha Mahmood

mild food eaters or the daredevils with the extra spicy curries. Despite the fact I have nams is allocated in the eaten at many Indian restaurants, heart of Bradford and Anams has to be my favourite. Mumtaz is in Leeds; but This is because food here is despite being situated in different varied, provides a broad loactions Both of these Indian spectrum of dishes to taste from, are well known and poular in all for just £10 per head, which their own ways. i will explore to me is a great bargain for an ‘all what do they both have to offer as you can eat’ service. indian restaurants and take a look at whats so unique about them The food was hot, but tasty and both and how they both differ in appeared to be freshly cooked style, decor and of course food. too. Food was refreshed on a Recently, I had visited this regular basis as well as refilled. I restaurant for a friend’s must be the only guest in birthday, we walked in at 10 O’ Bradford’s Anams restaurant, clock and stepped in to what who travels on a regular basis seemed like a hundred or so from Leeds to come to Bradford, plates laid out for the evening to enjoy the fantastic and unique buffet service. This is one of the dishes Anams has to offer. It main reasons why Anams is so has a nice selection of starters, well known in Bradford, for its which range from the traditional buffet service that if offers. Seekh Kebabs to popular items like Chicken Tikka, Samosas and Food was exquisite as well as much more. The Curry dishes delicious. The curries here cater were top quality and to see the for a variety of its customers and range of curries, it had to offer I for all food lovers, whether that’s


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was left in a pickle in which to try first. There were plenty of fresh salads and sauces to accompany the main and starters. The decor was magnificent, in the middle of this huge restaurant, it contains a huge pond with a range of exquisite fishes which I thought is a nice touch, and a nice scenery to look at whilst you’re eating. For a fixed cost at £10 it provides fantastic value especially when it’s an ‘all you can eat’ service. It also has its own free car park which is beneficial and convenient for customers. It was my first visit here, but I can guarantee it won’t be my last, I hope. Overall, it was a good dining experience and i would highly recommend it to all food lovers who love their indian cuisine.


Rating - 9/10




aving sampled Mumtaz at the Bradford branch, I knew what to expect. Mumtaz in my opinion is the most hyped up restaurant currently in the UK.


hot with a few extra vegetables and garnish as finishing touches. Which, was laid presented on a nice plate and was served nicely by the staff working there.

never tasted before but often is quite bland, and has absolutely What a great looking restaurant, stunning presentation, it does lack Once upon a time, Mumtaz was might I add? The décor is lush in flavour where Anams strength and elegant. On the outside of the lies. known for its reasonable price food, as well as its tasty food. Now restaurant, there are many flags on display with the names of the All in all, dining at Mumtaz has all that’s left of it is, that it’s just corresponding countrys which simple overrated. Yes, it’s quite always been a pleasure, adds a nice feel to it. Mumtaz’s expensive but despite the cost, particularly when you need seating arrangements differs from somewhere quiet, and calm to however I’ve never had a better curry, the herbs and spices seem Anams, as they have circular dine at. It provides a nice tables situated in and around the atmosphere. Some people pay to be absolutely fresh. room filling up as much space as good money for top notch On the arrival of Mumtaz, I possible and Anams on the other quality food and service, which is immediately noticed the very hand, have rows of tables subdued and calm atmosphere. why most people tend to eat here. alongside the centre and around For this reason, I would We started with Seekh Kebabs; it came out sizzling on a hot plate the restaurant. recommend it to all those who on a bed of fried onions. The just want simple Indian Overall, I would say, Mumtaz is kebabs were freshly cooked, a cuisines at their service and are a simple but elegant restaurant good size portion as well. The not to fussed over the pricing. which offers a superb dining curries lacked in portion sizes experience for its diners! It has but made up in areas such as, good taste and quality meat. The a lovely ambience, with polite, excellent & helpful staff at your Chicken Masala curry, which I service. Provides food, like I’ve had requested came medium

Rating - 8/10

Mixed Chaat

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The business that began in a bedroom M by Sophie Beaumont

idnite Munchies is the ultimate candy lover’s dream. A unique delivery service founded and based in Leeds serving you American candy straight to your door. Everything from Hershey’s kisses to Oreo cookie ice-cream and from Wonka nerds to Milk duds, you name it and they’ll deliver it to you within the hour. Beginning life as an idea back in 2010, a group of young students had the vision of supplying treats at a time in the day when all local shops in the area were closed. Christopher Chambers, 25 year old student at Leeds Metropolitan University decided to take the idea further and began to make the vision become reality. With help from his friends they worked together creating posters, price lists and promotions for the goods they intended to sell all from his own bedroom. Chris says “We worked out how much it would cost to buy the products and what we should sell them for. After handing out flyers and telling other students about our service the phone started ringing. We became really busy with customers and that’s when we knew we’d come up with a unique business idea”. Beginning as a business selling general candy, it soon became clear what the popular choices were on the menu. “We decided to add a few American chocolate bars to see if they would spark any interest. The demand was incredible, we were getting orders for American goods constantly but we didn’t yet have any to send out. This is when we decided to expand our choices and research international suppliers” explains Chris. After developing a connection with whole sellers based in America, Midnite Munchies was

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becoming widely recognised around the Leeds Area. They ran the business steadily from home for a few months delivering goods personally with use of their own vehicles. Eventually they decided it was time to take the next step and expand. Closing down the delivery service in December 2011, Chris purchased a retail unit in Hyde Park Leeds. The renovation took eight weeks; the walls were stripped, the ceiling was lowered, windows were covered and renovated and the whole store was revamped with stylish decor and new furniture. Finally the store was ready to open in July 2012 as an American themed cafe offering customers the chance to experience American groceries straight from the UK. “Having a store for Midnite Munchies appealed to us because it was a chance for us to offer customers a place to come and chill out in a friendly environment” describes Chris. He has even added free wifi and the option to borrow laptops to appeal directly to students who might want a place with a relaxing atmosphere to concentrate on their studies. Although the location of Midnite Munchies has moved on, the business idea remains the same. Their vision of supplying smoothies, milkshakes, desserts and sweets is still in place as they continue to deliver to the local area until 1am providing the ability for locals to enjoy a midnight feast. Finally, Chris tells us the best thing about Midnite Munchies: “We are a local business providing top quality products from successful suppliers so you

Features know you can trust they were made in a clean environment. Everybody knows where we are now that we have a store and this makes it a more personal experience for our customers”. Four months since opening and the Midnite Munchies store has come a long way. Chris told us about the 112 different Ice cream flavours he is now able to choose from to provide for his customers and the endless amounts of diferent candy. With such a great reputation he has developed connections with suppliers and even endorsements from local radio stations such as Capital FM. He has even talked of plans for expansion and franchising to other areas of the UK. This is truly a long way to come for a business that began in a bedroom. A small selection of the American candy range Midnite Munchies’ very own Red Velvet cake made with raspberry and chocolate sprinkles

“We became really busy with customers and that’s when we knew we’d come up with a unique business idea” The bright bright interior interior of of the the Midnite Midnite Munchies Munchies cafe cafe The

December 2012 Flavours 21


Thorntons chocolate century unwrapped

Thorntons has been excited and lucky enough to celebrate many years of creating delicious but unique chocolates but what will the next years hold for Thornton’s chocolate is an even more exciting prospect? But will Thorntons celebrate any more birthdays? By Anisha Mahmood


ill Thorntons still strive to retain its reputation as Britain’s best loved chocolate retailer and develop new and exciting products that customers will continue to love? Or will it continue to spiral downhill, as it faces financial problems due to the recession? Thornton chocolates have become one of the most versatile and beloved established chocolate company’s in the UK.

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It’s become so much more than just a brand, which we know and love – we as customers have an emotional, sensual connection with Thornton’s chocolates that we don’t have with any other chocolates.

Milestone forThorntons as they celebrated their 100th birthday

Ribena Bibi, 38, puts it “Whenever I pass this place I have to go in, the quality of the chocolates is just so marvellous and tasty too, it caters for the chocolate needs of all people and of all ages, which is why I can buy Thorntons chocolates for anyone and for any reason”. She adds “It comforts us, delights us, draws us in and gives us a taste of experience unlike any other. In simple words, I love it.” Thorntons speciality lies in the making of chocolates, sweets, cakes and lots of other sweets goodies, it offers a wide variety of chocolates, milk chocolates, dark chocolates, truffles and so more.

Features So what is so great about Thorntons chocolates, that customers are drawn to it?

absolute love it, and with it not being too pricey, its tasty and affordable at the same time. It’s a shame that Thornton’s are going through a rough Rachel Hellman, a customer to patch with their company, and their Thorntons states: “Thornton is quite sales are decreasing.” good in my opinion but it’s not nearly as good as it used to be. The A recent report shows that Thorntons fact is Thorntons chocolates are 100 years of success, is at stake as available everywhere even in low end they face over £2.4 million loss and supermarkets. The more you can has been issued with a three profit purchase your Thorntons warning this year. Due to the loss it chocolates at places which do them has faced, it enabled the helping hand for half the price of Thorntons of Nexus communications to help original stores do, the more people with its PR support. Nexus will cover find it to be not as good or as special as they were back then.” Let’s take a look at how it all began. The journey started back in October 1911, when owner Joseph Thornton, a travelling confectioner salesman, ran his small chocolate department, located in the heart of Sheffield. The big explosion started with Thorntons opening up to 368 stores and 218 franchises. Thorntons was once an £180 million turnover company and has been named the largest, independent chocolate and confectionery company in the UK; Since Cadburys was taken over by US Company Kraft. Last year, saw the well-established Thorntons celebrating their 100th birthday, of making mouth-watering chocolates for its customers all over Britain. Thorntons fans had the chance to celebrate the company’s fantastic history. Barbara Smith, 71, a lover of Thorntons chocolate recalls her fondest memories as a child of chewing Thorntons chocolate. “I was about five years old, when I got my first Thorntons chocolates from my grandma, since then I have grown up with Thorntons chocolates and have passed this passion to my grandchildren’s on every occasion, I give my family a piece of Thornton’s unique chocolates and they

profits for the chocolatier company. Thorntons annual report published in 2011 shows, the Board recommends a nominal final dividend of 0.25p making the total dividend for the year 2.20p. Parri Chuadasanna, the current manager of the branch located in Merrion Centre, Leeds, comments on the current news of Thorntons loss .“It’s a shame that Thorntons not doing so well, but there are regular customers who still purchase chocolates especially known brands like Thorntons and for some demands will grew and will still be willing to continue paying for quality chocolates. It’s due to the recession that people are opting out and wanting to buy cheaper chocolates instead which are at cheaper value.”

Lisa Harmasworth, an employee working for Thorntons for the past 5 years, in Leeds in Merrion Centre states “Thorntons is unique and specialises in all sorts of chocolates for all people and on special occasions like Halloween, we do food rocks and spooky rocks and all aspects of consumer and trade for Christmas there are more special PR, continuing to serve as Thornton’s chocolates to cater for the festive chocolate specialist agency. season”. She further adds, Despite the success it has had in the “Everyone has their favourite past, it’s aiming to close many of its Thornton’s chocolates, so customers branches up to 180 - 200 stores within are eager and excited to see what we the next 3 years. Not even the success have for them once festive seasons of Thorntons Jubilee, could improve like Christmas and Easter begins.” the financial situation it is currently in, and help boost sales and make any

Taste sensation

December 2012 Flavours 23


Got What It Cakes

For many people, desserts can be the highlight of a meal but for Shamaila Kauser it’s more than just a treat, it’s her daily income. By Anisha Mahmood

Shamaila started baking cakes for friends, just for fun. She recalls; “I ver picked up a wedding flicked through a recipe book ,that cake magazine or other I was given as a present and found food related magazines and a recipe of a basic Victoria sponge wondered if one day soon, just cake, I made it for family and friends maybe one of your cakes can be and they loved it as did I whilst featured with such splendour in such making it.” She continues on, “I was a glossy publication? always the one making cakes for When Shamaila Kauser, 24, a birthday’s family functions etc and pharmacy dispenser, from Leeds, a lot of people would always tell me was experimenting with cakes at to turn it into something more, so I home five years ago, she didn’t just decided to go for it. It was a huge realise she could turn her hobby of hit amongst friends and that’s when i creating cakes, into an online decided to turn it into a business, which would feature in high business.” end magazines. Shamaila decided to make her Who knew starting her own passion for baking into something a business would be as successful and which only seems to get bigger and bigger. ’Cuppy Cakes’ offers beautiful homemade cupcakes which taste just as good as they look. I took time to sit down with top cake baker and owner of ‘Cuppy Cakes’ Shamaila, to get a slice of what the cake industry is all about and a glimpse into her journey.


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little extra, she decided to create a Cuppy Cakes Facebook account. That’s when the business started to grow; cake orders started to grow as the weeks went by. Prices range from £15-£25 for 12 cupcakes depending on design and size. Cakes range from 25-60 depending on size and design; she covers her costs then adds time onto it. Three years after ‘Cuppy Cakes’ was created, demand for her product online has been so great that she is thinking about opening up a traditional retail store in the near future. Last year, in November 2011 during a local fundraiser charity event, which Shamaila had organised, she found out that she had won the award of ‘British Asian Baker of the Year’. She is now living the dream of running a successful business and the satisfaction of being her own boss. Apart from running her own cake business, she has recently started

part time modelling for beauty and clothing in the Asian industry. She has also enjoyed rubbing shoulders with some of Bollywood film industries elite stars, such as appearing as a model at a charity event organised by the superstar Shah Rukh Khan.

never stop enjoying baking, if it feels like a chore or extra job then you’re not doing it right. I feel so passionate about my creations that I strive to make people happy eating my cakes in the appearance and taste of them. I don’t have a motto but I’m a strong believer of be good to others and good will happen to you, Shamaila shows that ingenuity and this goes for everything, business, creativity can lead to success in family, friends.” She told me entrepreneurship and open other during the interview. She continues doors. She is hoping to set up other on, “I would say my role model is business projects such as a my mother, she has achieved so photography business. much personally and career wise she Shamaila says her biggest inspires me to do the same and if I accomplishment is yet to be achieved have a passion or idea for something as she’s on the verge of changing the she is the first to encourage.” name of the business as well as Shamaila can interpret ideas to setting up a website etc. She would create a cake that is unique to you as like to work alongside her party a customer and draws her planner friend and help to deliver inspiration from nature and some fantastic play parties for especially the theme or the children under 8, making the occasion, “So if it’s a child’s different themed cupcakes and then birthday, I think bright, seeing the children’s reactions. spontaneous, wacky and fun.” She You would think with everything further adds. “ ‘Cuppy Cakes’ uses going on in her life, how does she only the finest quality of ingredients manage to organize herself, well she to bake deliciously moist cakes which sets herself a date and an idea to are then decorated to a high accomplish and makes sure she has professional standard.” the concept and idea perfect by that If I have a big order I make sure I set date, so if it’s a recipe or a new am well prepared and organization cake design, “I’ll set a date for is the key, if I have my sugar flowers example, a week from today and decorations made in advance it’s and practice up until then’” she manageable, without organization it comments. would be chaos,” she adds. In 5 years’ time, Shamaila would like When asked what her biggest to see her customer base increase by challenge has been till date, she says double the amount, as well as “My biggest challenge was for a offering deliveries to different towns wedding display I did, the theme was and employing 2-3 people to work a deep red and gold, I thought red for her, for larger orders that she coloring would be fine but a week intends to receive in the future. before my order, I was making a batch to perfect my skills for the As well as that, she hopes to change big day and found the color was not the fact that she was alone when she coming out as I intended, i was in started and would look at training up sheer shock and didn’t know what additional to do at the time.It then took me to helpers. “When it gets too busy I researching and changing my butter find one pair of hands sometimes cream recipe and using a different isn’t enough for the job.” she says. type of food colouring which had to Desserts can be the highlight of a be halal too, it took a bit of research meal and if anything it’s often that and a few more failed attempts to get little treat to indulge into but for to the right concepts.” others like Shamaila it’s their way of “The best advice that I was given was gaining daily income.

Features As one customer Surinder Brogan, 41, sums up “Once again ‘Cuppy Cakes’ has delivered, what a talented and creative lady, Shamaila is. I love the fact we can give her, a theme or set of colours and she manages to create beautiful cupcakes every time in different ways.”

Great gift ideas

“Who knew five years ago that cupcakes would be the popular dessert it is right now?”

Our thanks to Shamaila Kauser, her advice and willingness to help others follow their dreams is truly inspiring.

December 2012 Flavours 25


Saving you from spending more Everyone has heard of the NUS card specifically for members of the students union but perhaps what you don’t yet know about is some of the top discount cards and loyalty schemes right on your doorstep. Flavour has been exploring the greatest offers available to you just by flashing a bit of plastic.


The Bite card is your ticket for discounts at food and drink outlets across railway stations. It offers you a whopping 20% discount off your bill at popular food places within the station such as: Burger King, Millies Cookies, Upper Crust, Pumpkin, The Pasty Shop and Caffe Ritazza. The great thing about this card is there are no requirements to get one, it’s absolutely free and they are accepted in all UK train stations.


Described as Britain’s favourite student card, the Yellowcard is exclusive to Scream pubs. With a cost of just £1 you won’t be disappointed as you can even claim your free burger once you register the card online. There are a whopping four pubs just in Leeds city centre alone that offer you a discount for flashing the card and various locations all over the country. You can even use this card in some Yates’s for discount on drink prices.

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The Elite Club offers an exclusive members only card for anyone who signs up at The Light in Leeds. As well as a number of retail and cinema discounts this card gets you discounts at several food outlets including the ever-so popular Nando’s. The card costs nothing more than five minutes of your time but lasts a lifetime with different offers added every month. Café Rouge, Bagel Nash, Barburrito and Browns are just a few of the food places offering discount this December.

Top Loyalty Schemes

Not to be missed

The Subcard offers all you sandwich lovers the chance to recieve free subs at Subway. Collect enough points and you’ll be entitled to rewards you can redeem when you choose. Points can be collected when purchasing anything from a cookie to a footlong sandwich.

The Shake’n’save loyalty card available at Shake’a’Holic allows customers to collect a free large milkshake after buying ten shakes. It also entitles the holder to free gifts such as t-shirts, keyrings, badges, and even hoodies.

The newly revamped loyalty card for Nando’s offers chicken fanatics the chance to earn a whole chicken for free after just 10 visits. Collect a stamp each time you spend £6 or more and after three visits you’ll even get a free chicken breast.

Don’t forget if you’re a student there are even food places that will offer you discount just for studying!

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It’s now or never We take a journey through one man’s dream to open a South American inspired cafe

By Jessica Balme


red Parkes, a former accountant from Brighouse, talks about his exciting new venture and the travels that brought him to create a South American inspired menu to feed the hungry people of Leeds. On a night bus, winding through the dark roads towards the Chilean border, hunched over and frantically scribbling in a worn notebook was Fred. Pumped up on caffeine he had just come up with his culinary concept. Fred, whose favourite food might just be empanadas, worked in the food sector as a student and it was here that he found his passion. When he’s not indulging in his outdoor hobbies he loves discovering new foods, and hopes that this enjoyable new path can be long term bringing more exciting opportunities. After researching his ideas further he began to put his plan into action in June with the feeling of “now or never.” The menu he is designing derives from South American street food that he ate whilst travelling with his fiancé, including ethnic staples such as empanadas. Half a year long trip was spent in exotic countries like

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Peru and Bolivia tasting delights in restaurants, cafes & from unique street vendors. Ever since a gap year after university Fred had been longing to return to the place he loved, & after working as an accountant for six years he finally could realise his dream. Food wasn’t the only activity on the menu however; they also visited Machu Picchu, the salt flats & Nasca lines & even climbing a volcano. For Fred when choosing where to travel South America has a magnetic force ‘I love the food, the landscapes, the diversity, the culture and the people.’ He also loves discovering untouched places and this was one of the main reasons he wanted to visit South America “I can see the continent improving economically on a rapid scale and expect that this will bring significant change to the culture and vibe. I really wanted to see as much of it as possible before globalisation has its full impact. I believe that I can visit other parts of the world in years to come without there being significant changes from the way

things are now.” Fred also believes this of China, where he spent a month. He spent time with the locals on numerous trips, absorbing their culture at festivals and carnivals and visiting rural areas off the beaten track. On one occasion in his gap year in 2003, after spending many hungry weeks in the rainforest eating nothing more than rice and beans, he managed to persuade, and guide a street vendor to make a chip buttie. This was a post-party taste of home for him and his friends, and he did return to taste the food that was on the menu. To help design and improve his menu Fred held a tasting session at Dock Street Market, a unique location favoured by city centre residents. He chose Dock Street Market for its location and kitchen facilities; one of his mantras is to collaborate with other local food and drink businesses in Leeds. The testing also helped to raise the profile of Dock Street Market, a place which he is a fan of because

Sweet Treats

Profile of its relaxed vibe, for several people this was their first visit. Lucky attendees were treated to samples from the upcoming range, for Fred this is where all his hard work began to pay off. “I was a little apprehensive about what everyone would think. I was also delighted by the care and attention to feedback people were putting in – it makes the preparation and effort all worthwhile. I’ll be back to refining a few of the products in the coming weeks, but feel relatively comfortable that much of the hard work has been done over the last year.” The outcome of the testing event was positive; it helped create a buzz for his food as well as giving him suggestions. “There weren’t any clear favourites, in that each person seemed to like different products – I see this as a positive as it means there is potentially something for everyone on the menu.” He hopes that the people that eat his food will be lovers of flavour, and will be for those on the move.

as an accountant he was involved in the firm’s national ‘Energy, Environment and Sustainability’ sector team which gave him a real interest in operating responsibly. He has spoken to local suppliers to ensure that this is feasible. “I’m under no illusions that the ethics will be perfect, but believe that I’ll be heading in the right direction and will have a constant focus on Fred also hopes to capitalize on improvement. I’m trying to do this the growing South American community as well as feeding hungry on a commercial basis, so that it is viable in the long term, providing students and city workers. When he gets funding Fred would, ideally, good food, hopefully employment and training opportunities. If things like to open a store in the city go well, I’d like to use some of the centre, otherwise he will start as a street vender, being able to trade in returns for good causes. There are a number of things both locally and in the city centre as well as at festivals, South America that I would love to markets and progress from there. The menu is based on foods that he support in some way.” ate whilst travelling, from the Italian and Spanish influences in Argentina Fred is very hopeful for the future “I think that South American food and Uruguay, to the Andean food is going to be very popular in the high in Bolivia and Peru. “I have coming years, particularly with the changed the recipes somewhat focus on Rio for the World Cup from the originals we tried, but the and Olympics. Therefore, I wanted fundamentals are still the same. At to bring the concept to the UK present, you can get the products on a food-to-go basis, but with a in some great restaurants, but not positive ethical stance – do it first on a food-to-go basis. I have a core and hopefully do it right, fingers menu, but will be drawing from crossed!” other foods as specials from across the continent. The ethos is simple, good quality food.” For now, Fred’s food remains a tasty memory, look out for progress Fred hopes that the range will updates in the future. We know be ethical, ultimately aiming for we’ll be the first in line! ingredients to be locally sourced

Beef Empenada

and organic. When he worked

The best countries to visit for food Italy:

If heaven is a place then we’re sure it’s Italy, forgetting the pizzas and the pastas there’s gelato. We could eat rich & creamy Italian gelato all day, until we were too full to move, in which case we’d move onto sorbet.


India is loved by gap-year travellers for it’s street food. Those with a strong stomach can taste some of the spiciest dishes in the world. We love all the street vendors each creating their own takes on India’s classic dishes.


If raw fish is your dish of choice then Japan is definitely the place to be. Midori-Zushi is the best place to be for sushi if you’re on a budget. There are also many small street vendors offering delicious food such as ramen. December 2012 Flavours 29

Taste Look-book Check out how to make some of these tasty treats:

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December 2012 Flavours 31

Recipe of the month: Caramel Layer Cake Ingredients FOR VANILLA & CHOCOLATE SPONGES225g very soft butter , plus extra for greasing 225g golden caster sugar 175g self-raising flour 85g ground almonds 1 tsp baking powder 3 eggs 150ml pot natural yogurt 1 tsp vanilla extract 5 tbsp cocoa powder FOR CARAMEL & CARAMEL-CHOC SPONGES225g very soft butter , plus extra for greasing 175g light muscovado sugar 50g dark muscovado sugar 175g self-raising flour 85g ground almonds 1 tsp baking powder 3 eggs 150ml pot natural yogurt 1 tsp vanilla extract 1 tbsp cocoa TO ASSEMBLE397g can caramel (stocked near the condensed milk in stores) 140g dark chocolate 140g milk chocolate 300ml double cream

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Prep 1 hr Cook 55 mins plus cooling Freeze before filling and icing 1.Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Grease and line bases of 2 x 20cm sandwich tins with baking parchment. For the Vanilla & chocolate sponges, mix all the ingredients, apart from the cocoa, together with an electric whisk. Scrape half the mix into a second bowl and whizz in the cocoa. Scrape into the tins and bake for 20-25 mins until a skewer poked in comes out clean. 2.Repeat step 1 for the Caramel & caramel-choc sponges, again leaving cocoa out of the first mixing, then splitting the mix in half and whizzing the cocoa into one batch. Cook as above. 3.While sponges are cooling, melt the dark and milk chocolate together in a bowl over a pan of barely simmering water. Remove from the heat, stir in the cream and cool or chill until spreadable. 4.When the sponges are cool, spread a third of the caramel over the Vanilla sponge and top with the Caramel sponge. Spread over another third of the caramel and top with the Caramel-choc sponge, then the final third of caramel and top with the Chocolate sponge (don’t panic if you mix up the layers, the cake will still look great when you cut in). Spread the chocolate icing over the whole cake to serve. It will keep in a cool place in an airtight container for up to 3 days. PER SERVING1036 kcalories, protein 15g, carbohydrate 99g, fat 67 g, saturated fat 35g, fibre 3g, sugar 75g, salt 1.25 g

Flavours jessica balme%2c sophie beaumont%2c anisha mahmood (3)  
Flavours jessica balme%2c sophie beaumont%2c anisha mahmood (3)