Friday, 5 February 2016

Weekend Man-Food - Spiced Mozzarella Stuffed Meatballs

As regular readers will know I've been away with the British Army for a long while and, horror of horrors, have had to subsist on the slop provided by their civilian contractors for the last year. The MOD should be utterly ashamed of what it feeds its troops, but I digress.

Well, I'm home now and have had an emotional reunion with my kitchen! So, here's the first Weekend Manfood post for a long time. I had this at a restaurant last year whilst nursing the mother of all hangovers after a friends' wedding. I knew immediately I had make this dish at home.

I give you meat stuffed with cheese... or mozzerella stuffed meatballs.

Meat. Cheese. Oh yes!

Assemble the following:

500g beef mince
100g chorizo, diced in to small cubes
1 hunk mozzarella, diced in to small cubes
250ml bread crumbs
100ml milk
2 eggs, beaten
3 tbs of Herbs de Provence
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp ground garlic
1tsp ground black pepper
1tsp salt
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp chilli flakes

Throw the whole lot in to a large glass bowl and mix thoroughly.

Form the meat in to ball and press the mozzarella cube in to the centre and re form.

Brown the meatballs in a large pan, then pour in some tomato sauce. Bring to the boil then lower the heat and simmer partially covered for an hour. (I have to admit I cheated here and used a jar of ready-made passata but it's easy enough to make your own sauce.)

Serve with penne. Simple as that. Have a good weekend chaps.

Thursday, 4 February 2016

Andersen-Andersen Seamen Sweater - Italian Looks, Danish Heritage.

After nearly 25 years of faithful service my original Channel Island made guernsey pull-over has been relegated to 'old work jumper' status.

Looking for a smarter replacement (read: not full of holes) I immediately thought of Danish knitwear label ANDERSEN-ANDERSEN - a label I came across at a Copenhagen fashion show in 2014 and had mentally filed away for future reference.

Yep, it's a grey jumper, but a jolly well made one.
ANDERSEN-ANDERSEN is a small family run company founded in 2009 by Product Developer Cathrine Lundgren-Andersen and Art Director Peter Kjaer-Andersen. The company arose from the idea of making one durable and classic sailors sweater.

Today the collection has grown to 7 styles. The one which caught my eye was The Seaman, perhaps unsurprisingly very similar in style, construction and fit to my faithful guernsey. 
Long ribbed cuffs
The wool is single knit seven-gauge 100% new merino, sourced from South America. In collaboration with their Italian spinning mill the company developed its own yarn, now used for all their wool sailor sweaters. The extra spun fibres and the fact the yarn is made of pure new merino wool, makes it both soft and durable. The sweaters are then knitted by another small family concern in Northern Italy.
The detailing and construction is simple, but spot on - the bottom, collar & cuffs are all ribbed with thumb holes in the latter. For strength all seams are bar-tacked. 
The fit is pleasingly slim, making it an ideal base layer - the symmetrical cut means it can be chucked on quickly either way - this jumper may be stylish but the working sailor's heritage is clear to see.

ANDERSEN-ANDERSEN have their flagship store in Copenhagen, but I bought my jumper from that treasure trove of heritage fashion Maritime Antiques - a must visit for any vintage minded chap if you're in town. Yours for 1,200 dkk.
(All images courtesy of ANDERSEN-ANDERSEN.)

Monday, 1 February 2016

Gentlemen's Undergarments - JBS Underwear

When you realise that some of your t-shirts are older than your 11 year-old step daughter it is perhaps a good time to upgrade.

Such was the case with me last month, so off I went to the sales looking to replace some of my more worn long-sleeve undershirts.

Founded by Jens Bjerg Sørensen, Danish company JBS have been making quality underwear since the start of World War II. Today the company is still family run and employs 300 people; and as the blurb on the company website has it, they are one of Denmark's leading underwear manufacturers.

JBS Undershirt -

Their Classic range is a good place to start for those looking to keep out the chill of a seemingly endless winter.

In terms of workmanship and production it's spot on, though nothing particularly special compared to for example the premium loopwheel construction of Buzz Rickson's cottons - just a decent well made ribbed cotton undershirt for everyday wear. The contrasting white stitching on the non white versions and plain cotton button placket are nice touches too.

JBS Undershirt -

Aside from the traditional plain white and black the undershirts are available in several colours. I plumbed for navy blue, grey and coral red - these all look perfect underneath a heavy denim or chambray shirt.

Apparently the company are now doing an a range endorsed by the association footballer Christiano Ronaldo, but please don't let that put you off.

JBS Undershirt -

Find out more here.