Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Seared thyme scallops & minted peas with broad beans

I was not a big seafood lover before I came to England. Today I know this was due to the lack of fresh seafood in Poland, but since I can go to a fishmonger every Friday on the local market where I have a wide selection of fresh seafood I started to like this type of food.

If you live with person who is a sceptical about seafood or you are this sort of person yourself, you should definitely try scallops first. They are very pleasant to cook, all you have to remember is not to overcook them because they will become rubbery. Otherwise they are easy to prepare, tasty, they have a meaty flesh and do not scare some people with “worm like” appearance.

Today my favourite summer scallops recipe from Gordon Ramsay's "Healthy Appetite".

Serves 1

6 king scallops, shelled and cleaned
handful of podded peas (preferably fresh one)
handful of podded broad beans
few thyme sprigs, leaves only
handful of mint, leaves roughly chopped
2 tbsp olive oil + extra to drizzle
2 tbsp of butter
2 tbsp of water
few pinches of coarse sea salt (I used flaked one)

Bring a pan of salted water to a boil, tip in the broad beans, and blanch for 5 minutes or until tender. Scoop them out with a slotted spoon and plunge into
a bowl of iced water to refresh. Drain well and tip into a bowl. Do the same thing with peas but it requires less cooking, so cook it for about 2-3 minutes. Drain and add to iced water with beans.

Gently squeeze the broad beans to pop them out of their skins. Add to the peas and set aside.

Put the thyme leaves on a board and sprinkle with some coarse sea salt. Chop and sprinkle the thyme salt over one side of the scallops. Save some thyme salt for later. Heat a skillet and add the olive oil.

Pan-fry the scallops for 1½ minute on one side and 1 minute on other - they should feel slightly springy when pressed. Remove to a warm plate and rest for a minute while you reheat the vegetables.

Tip the peas and broad beans into the skillet and add a 2 tbsp water and a butter. Heat for a minute to warm through, season to taste, and toss through the mint leaves.

Spoon the vegetables onto warm plate and top with the scallops. Sprinkle with a little more thyme salt and drizzle a little extra-virgin olive oil. Serve immediately.

Saturday, 26 June 2010

Sorrel, goats' cheese & prosciutto tart

The most expensive tart so far. You will not see any black truffles or real caviar, but not very popular in UK green leaf vegetable called sorrel. Actually considered less a vegetable and more herb in some countries. Where do I start, where do I begin this story about the most expensive tart I have made so far...

I love sorrel, which is very popular in Poland and you can possibly pick some up from very random fields or meadows. If I can get hold of some precooked chopped sorrel in the jar I always use it to make one of our favourite soups - sorrel soup with hard boiled egg.

I did not hesitate to ask about sorrel my local veg and fruit supplier on the local market, that is held every Friday in the town where I work. They offer a wide selection of fresh fruit and veg, but I was not surprised or disappointed that they did not have any sorrel, because I realise that this is not very popular veg in UK. I have asked the veggie boss if he sells sorrel at all and he said that he can order me some for next week. I was extremely happy because I could go ahead with my sorrel cooking plan.

Next Friday I have come back to my local market with a big smile on my face (I would possibly whistle if I only knew how to do it) and the veggie boss turned to me saying: six fifty, love! I could not tell you what my facial expression was but I tried to hold a big smile, pay and just walk away with 600g bag of sorrel. Just go...

When I got over the price of this veg (just that you can compare and realise what a horror situation is was: stewing beef in local butchers costs around ₤6.50/kg!) I have checked the packaging just to see if it was grown and picked by English Queen, as the price would suggest. Actually it was not, but is was grown in Israel and packed in Yorkshire. I have come back and asked whether I can order ENGLISH ONE, that will not cost me a fortune. Veggie boss said, that season for English one starts in about week, or two...

I often make decisions rashly, based on my mood or emotions. I was dying to eat some sorrel so I ordered some, few days before the season. After all I have to admit that this sorrel tart was definitely worth it.

Makes rectangular loose bottom tart dish (35x13x2.5cm), serves 2-3

350g ready made, rolled puff pastry
600g sorrel
approx. 30g butter
2 garlic cloves
2 shallots
100g goats' cheese ( I used chevre log)
4 rashes of parma ham or prosciutto
freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 200 C.

Line the tart dish with the puff pastry, cover with some baking paper and ceramic baking beans (or dried beans or coins) and blind bake for about 15 minutes. It is the process of baking a pie crust or other pastry without the filling. Blind baking is necessary when it will be filled with an unbaked filling or when the filling has a shorter bake time than the crust. Blind baking also prevents the crust from becoming soggy from its filling.

Wash, dry and chop the sorrel finely.

In a pan melt the butter, add chopped shallots and fry over a medium heat until soft. Next add the chopper garlic and sorrel to the pan and fry for another 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. This filling could be too wet, if so leave it on the sift for few minutes.

Remove the pre baked base from the oven and reduce the temperature to 175 C. Cover the edges with tin foil - it will prevent from browning and drying. Fill the form with sorrel filling and stick the crumbled cheese into it. Bake until the top is golden and firm.

Remove from the oven and top with some shredded ham. Serve immediately.

I think this should be a great tart for vegetarians too, so next time I will skip the ham and add some poached egg on the top of each small individual sorrel tart.

Thursday, 24 June 2010

Five or less ingredients #2

Previously in this series:

#1 Series rules and pork stir fry in caramel sauce

I have not showed a fish for a while so this time it is fishy dish as good quality fish does not need many extra ingredients to be cooked with. Recipe inspired by “Good Food” magazine (some ancient issue).

Salmon baked with fennel and black olives

Serves 2

2 salmon fillets (I used steaks)
fresh fennel
2 handfuls of black olives (I used whole black olives, not from a brine)
new potatoes to serve

Preheat the oven to 200C.

Slice the fennel finely, saving some top leaves for later and place in an ovenproof dish.

Half the lemon and save one half for serving and squeeze the other half juice onto the fennel.

Place the salmon on the top of the fennel, sprinkle with salt and chopped fennel top leaves. Add olives and bake for about 15 minutes (depends on fish weight). Serve with boiled new potatoes and lemon wedges.

Wednesday, 23 June 2010

Guest blogger on Local Food Advisor

This is just a quick note to let you know that I am a guest blogger this week on Local Food Advisor website. I am very grateful for this opportunity and I hope I can provide my readers with some more posts relating to a local food and producers.

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Rolled crispy belly pork with sage & homemade apple sauce

This is not for those obsessively counting calories. Not for women concerned about their waist, not for men who would only eat fish to maintain their six-pack abs. If you do not like fat it means that you do not like the taste.

I am not encouraging you to swap your diet for fatty one, but if you fancy pork it is better to buy fatty cuts, as they do not dry out during the cooking and are extremely tasty. You do not have to eat fat, you can always leave it on the side of the plate but it is essential to cook pork with some fat as it prevents meat from drying. And this is something that food lovers should avoid.

This is not something that I cook on everyday basis, but I we like to dig in fatty, tasty piece of pork perhaps twice a year, so cook belly pork in two ways and I am going to show one of them.

Serves 2-3

approx. 800g rolled belly pork
2 carrots, roughly chopped
leek, sliced
2 onions, peeled and halved
4 garlic cloves, unpeeled
ok. 400ml dry cider or vegetable stock
tsp dry sage
tbsp cider vinegar
freshly ground black pepper

Heat the oven to 160C. Place all vegetables in an ovenproof dish.

Place the belly pork in a colander and pour some hot water over – James Martin says it will make the skin crispier. Dry and rub cider vinegar all over the belly pork. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and sage and place onto a veg, add half of the cider or stock and place in the oven. Roast for 2.5 hours adding rest of the cider after about 1.5hour.

Remove from the oven, cover with tin foil and leave it to rest for about 10 minutes. Remove the string and slice.

We had it with some braised cabbage, new potatoes and homemade apple sauce.

Homemade apple sauce

2 big cooking apples (I used Granny Smith), peeled, cored and diced
2 tsp soft brown sugar
2 tbsp water
juice of whole lemon
pinch of cinnamon
tbsp honey

Place all of the above ingredients in a pan and simmer over a medium heat, pressing apples down with wooden spoon until mashed.

Friday, 18 June 2010

Hummus, flatbreads & review

As I mentioned few days ago I had the opportunity to test Kenwood Compact FP120 Food Processor (1.4 Litre). I use to have a proper, big machine, with an extra jug but it broke down twice and did not want it again. This is the reason why I have decided to get smaller one. I do not need a food processor to make the dough, as I use bread machine and I am happy with it. I do not need a jug, as I use a hand liquidizer. I needed new food processor to make bread crumbs, hummus or other dips, grating and slicing. I am extremely happy with my Kenwood mini chopper which I bought over a year ago and use it on everyday basis and it is still working fine, so I decided to get one of their food processors, but the compact one.

It comes with a blade, spatula, coarse grating and slicing attachment, whisker and a citrus press. There is only one thing that I will possibly miss – a fine slice and grate disk. It is dishwasher safe and it has a non slip feet. One speed and pulse work great for me.

I have used it for grating and slicing the veg and making hummus so far and all was working fine.

If you are used to bigger, better machines you will probably be disappointed but I think it is a little gem in the kitchen – cheap but cheerful, small, not too heavy and it takes up very little room on the work surface and storage. You should not expect it to do the same job as the more expensive options - clearly this is not for heavy duty work, but for small amounts it works fine. It is ideal for cooking for two. Possibly would be too small for family of four or more.


Now I tell you how we made ourselves feel like on Mediterranean Sea holiday again in the middle of Yorkshire. I am extremly happy with the weather in June, except from few days of rain we had really nice and warm days so far.

All we needed was a patio set, good wine and simple to make and tasty food to enjoy our evening. Especially we have a lot of fresh herbs in a huge clay pot and some lavender in the patio, so we did not need anything else. Perhaps we missed a warm sea breeze.

Basic hummus (quick version)

Serves 2-4

400g tinned chickpea, drained
tbsp tahini paste (I used dark one)
juice of one lemon
garlic clove (optional)
olive oil
chilli powder (optional)

Place the chickpea, tahini, lemon juice, garlic and salt in a food processor and blend until thoroughly mixed and smooth at the same adding some olive oil to make it nice and smooth. If you prefer low fat option use some water from a tinned chickpea, but surely a good quality olive oil makes real, tasty hummus.

Place in serving bowl, and create a shallow well in the hummus. Add a small amount (1-2 tablespoons) of olive oil in the well and sprinkle with chilli powder (optional). You can also garnish with some fresh herbs.

We had it with some homemade flatbread (Nigella Lawson’s recipe from “How to be a domestic goddess”), olives stuffed with sun dried tomatoes and some Spanish wine. Lots of wine… Isn’t a perfect dinner on a lovely summer night?


Makes 6

For the dough:

500g strong white bread flour
7g (1 sachet) dried yeast
2 tsp salt
2 tbsp plain yoghurt
2 tbsp olive oil
approximately 300ml warm water

For the glaze:

1 large egg (I skip the egg)
1 tsp water
1 tsp plain yoghurt
nigella seeds to sprinkle

Place all the ingredients in a bread machine and use the “dough” programme. If you do not use the machine, combine the flour, yeast and salt in a large bowl and make a well. Dollop the yoghurt and oil into a jug and add warm water. Give a quick beat with a fork to combine, then pour this liquid into the dry ingredients, and mix with your hands or a wooden spoon, adding more liquid as needed, to form a firm but soft dough.

Turn out onto a floured surface and start kneading. Add more flour as needed until you have got smooth and elastic dough. Form the dough into a ball and place in an oiled bowl. Cover the bowl with cling film or clean cloth and leave to rise for about an hour or so, until doubled in size. Remove the dough from the bowl or machine, punch down.

Divide the dough into 6 equal pieces. Form each of these 6 little pieces into an egg-shape and, one by one, roll them out to make them flat. Place on baking tray lined with some baking paper, cover with tea towel and leave to prove for 20 minutes, until puffy. Preheat the oven to 220ºC.

Beat the egg with the water and yoghurt – sometimes I skip the egg and use water and yoghurt only. Using a pastry brush, paint this over the breads. Sprinkle on the nigella seeds and bake in the hot oven for 8–10 minutes - the flatbreads should be golden.

Remove them from the oven and wrap immediately with a tea towel so that these breads do not dry up and get too crusty.

These are also beautiful next day reheated under a hot grill.

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Blueberry cheescake

There are some typically Polish food specialities that I miss a lot. Perhaps you will think – she lives in UK and there are plenty of Polish delis. Yes, there are, but I have to travel a lot to the nearest one and it does not give me a wide and interesting selection of my favourites, never mind the unprofessional staff.

I miss a curd cheese (twaróg) a lot. I figured out to make my own; it tastes good but different from what I know from Poland. Every time I make my own curd cheese it ends up on homemade bread or I mix it with some fresh herbs, yogurt and vegetables such as cucumber or radishes. This is the reason why I bake cheesecakes using cream cheese rather than a traditional Polish curd cheese. I am not bothered about getting Philadephia, because cream cheese from any supermarkets brands is cheaper and good enough.

I also miss bilberries that grow in Polish woods. I live few miles from a wood but I have never seen any berries in it. So in the summer I try to comfort myself with some blueberries instead. They are very tasty, but not as tasty as bilberries. If I do not have what I love, I have to love what I have.

This cheesecake comforts me when I miss my Polish traditional cheesecake with bilberries. You can use fresh raspberries instead - it also tastes good.

Blueberry cheesecake

Makes round 25cm springform tin

200g Digestive biscuits
80g unsalted butter
800g cream cheese
200g caster sugar
4 eggs
2 tbps custard powder
tsp vanilla extract
juice of half lemon
250g blueberries

Line a springform tin with some kitchen foil, making sure the bottom is protected from water. I bake this cheesecake in bain-marie, which is a type of preparation used for protecting dishes requiring gentle heat from the fierce heat of the oven.

Crush the biscuits in a food processor (or put in a plastic bag and bash with a rolling pin). Mix with the melted butter. Press into springform tin and place in the fridge.

Preheat the oven to 180C.

Beat the cream cheese with the sugar, vanilla extract and lemon juice until light and fluffy. Next add eggs – one egg at the time, mix and add next egg when previous is mixed well with the cheese mixture.

Next add custard powder and mix, but make sure you do not overwork it – stop when custard is mixed into the cheese. Add the blueberries and mix gently with a spatula and pour the mixture into the tin.

Place the tin into an ovenproof dish and fill with hot water (about half of the size of the tin), cover with kitchen foil and bake for about 1 hour. Uncover for last 10 minutes. The middle will be a bit wobbly.

Let it to cool down in the open oven and then transfer to the fridge and leave it overnight.

I serve it with some fresh blueberries on top garnished with fresh mint leaves.

Monday, 14 June 2010

New potatoes, broad beans & peas salad

Serves 2

10-12 new potatoes (I used jersey royal)
cup of broad beans
cup of fresh peas
handful of fresh mint
juice of half lemon
3 tbsp olive oil
freshly ground black pepper

Wash and boil the potatoes until soft. Drain, let them cool down slightly and peel, than cut in half.

Boil the broad beans, drain and peel. Chop most of the mint, saving some leaves for garnishing.

Prepare a dressing - mix lemon juice with olive oil and pepper.

Mix the potatoes with broad beans, peas, chopped mint and dressing. Garnish with some mint leaves and serve warm or cold.

Friday, 11 June 2010

Five or less ingredients #1

I was quite temped to buy a new cookery book last week, but luckily for my purse, and more importantly for my shelves that have run out of space, Magda has told me not to do so! Being very optimistic she told me that possibly about half of the recipes will be crap and certainly I am able to cook better dishes using my own knowledge. The book that was tempting me was about tasty food made from four ingredients.

So I sat with a pen and a piece of paper and wrote a list of dishes that require five or less ingredients to prepare. I was quite impressed with the outcome , especially when I was making this list I still did not check any of my cookery books or magazines.

Therefore I have decided to start a new series. Just to explain how it works:

I am hoping to show tasty and easy to make five or less ingredients dishes. List of ingredients will exclude salt, pepper and water, as I presume everyone has those at home at all times. Sometimes possibly you will see some fresh herbs for garnishing, but these are not included and I only use them for photographing purposes and they will not have a major or any impact on the taste of the final dish.

I will also use ready buy products such as good quality powdered bouillon (stock), puff pastry, pesto or curry paste. Anyway I do use them on everyday basis, as not always I have spare time to cook homemade stock (or I run out of the frozen one) or make my own pesto. Not even mentioning homemade puff pastry, which is gorgeous and buttery but time consuming.

Right! Lets try first recipe. It is turkey stir fry in caramel sauce served with rice. The recipe comes from "Quick & easy Vietnamese" Nancie McDermott and I have made few alterations to it.

I have tried it before with pork, which is probably my favourite one but chicken, turkey or even king prawns are fine.

Turkey stir fry in caramel sauce

Makes 2

400g of turkey, cut into bite size strips
4 tbsp brown sugar
6 tbsp fish sauce (nam pla)
half tsp chilli powder
rice to serve (allow 80-100g uncooked rice per person)
ground black pepper (quite a lot)
2 tbsp cold water
2 tbsp hot water

Mix the meat with fish sauce, pepper and one tbsp of sugar and set aside.

Place 3 tbsp sugar and 2 tbsp of cold water in non stick pan and boil until it starts to bubble and changes colour to honey-like and it is quite syrupy. Next add 2 tbsp of hot water and leave it to erupt for a little while, then add the meat with marinade. Stir until it is all covered with the caramel sauce and keep on the heat until most of the juices evaporates and meat is quite sticky.

Serve immediately with cooked rice.

Thursday, 10 June 2010

Testing, testing, testing!

Stay tuned for an upcoming review sponsored by CSN Stores! Check out their websites, where you can find anything that you possibly need in your kitchen, but also great furniture and lighting.

It is cold and rainy day in North Yorkshire, so I will try to make something nice to eat to make ourselves feel like on Mediterranean Sea holiday again. The weather is not very summery but at least we can have a summer on our plates.

Check out my blog for upcoming test, review and some new recipes!

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

My favourite roast chicken

Inspired by Jamie Oliver.

Serves 4

1.5kg chicken
2 tbs olive oil
freshly ground black pepper
whole lemon
handful of fresh thyme
2 bay leaves
3 celery sticks
2 onions
2 carrots
whole garlic bulb

Take the chicken out of the fridge for at least 30 minutes before roasting - it will bring the meat to the room temperature and make the roasting easier.

Preheat the oven to 250 C.

Wash the carrots, there is no need to peel them, just chop them into about inch pieces. Chop the celery stick, peel the onion and quarter, divide garlic into cloves and leave unpeeled. Place all the veg in a roasting dish.

Rub the olive oil into the chicken and season with salt and pepper.

Place the lemon in a microwave for about 10 seconds on the high power, then prick carefully with a knife and put the lemon inside the chicken’s cavity, with the bunch of thyme (save few springs for later) and bay leaves. Place the chicken on the top of the vegetables.

I always place the chicken breast side down first as all the juices will keep this particularly dry part of chicken quite moist when roasting. I turn it over for about lat 30 minutes of roasting.

Place the chicken in the preheated oven and immediately turn the heat down to 200 C. Roast for about 1 hour 30 minutes. If the veg become bit dry and start to burn add few tablespoons of water into a dish.

When cooked, take it out of the oven and set aside to rest for about 10 minutes – you can cover the bird with piece of kitchen foil. Meat tightens up during cooking and resting allows it to relax, release some of the meat juices and results in a soft tender meat.

P.S. If you can manage to eat it all, take the breast meat off the bones or cut out the legs and place in the pan together with all the roasting juices and vegetables. Next day just reheat it over a low heat. The cold leftovers are also great with salads or sandwiches.

In similar way I roast chicken pieces – legs, thighs or drumsticks, but I put some quartered lemon together with a veg, and sometimes add different herbs.

Saturday, 5 June 2010

Challah bread

Challah bread is know as a traditional Jewish bread eaten on Shabbat, but also a traditional bread in numerous European countries, such as Poland among local non-Jewish peasant populations. It is quite popular in Poland and we call it chałka, plecionka, or kukiełka. It goes very well with homemade jams such as this rhubarb jam, which I have made few days ago. Perhaps you will be surprised but it actually tastes really nice with some dry cured ham such as Parma or Serrano ham.

This is a compilation of few recipes that I have used before and none of them was perfect (according to my taste) so I created my own.

Challah bread

Makes 2

600g plain flour + about 100g extra
80g caster sugar
80g unsalted butter
300ml milk
3 eggs
tsp of vanilla extract
level tsp of salt
7g dried fast action yeast
sesame seeds or poppy seeds for decoration

Warm the milk together with the butter until it is melted. Set aside to cool down slightly.

Lightly beat two eggs and one egg yolk saving one egg white for later. Add beaten eggs, vanilla extract to the milk with butter and place in the bread machine or artisan mixer. If using your hand add it to a large bowl.

Next add to the machine/mixer/bowl 600g of flour mixed with all sugar and salt and add the yeast. I used bread machine so only pressed the dough programme, if using mixer or hands mix until dough is ball shaped and for few minutes afterwards and if it is too sticky you have to add some more flour. The dough should be not too sticky and quite flexible.

Place in a bowl cover with clean tea towel and leave it to rise until doubled in size. (45-90 minutes, depends on temperature). If using a bread machine you do not have to do anything until the programme ends.

Remove from a bowl, place on a lightly floured surface and by punching release the air out of the dough. Divide into two equal balls, and each into 6 pieces. Now, you have to watch this tutorial– is shows clearly how to braid 6 strand challah.

Place both bread on the baking tray lined with baking paper, cover with clean cloth and leave it for about 20 minutes. Meanwhile preheat the oven to 180 C.

Gentle brush the bread with the egg white and sprinkle with poppy or sesame seeds, or using you fingers press some seeds to each section of bread, like shown in the tutorial.

Bake for about 30 minutes and cover with some kitchen foil if it goes too brown during the baking.

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Yorkshire coast & picnic basket - the perfect day out.

I would have never expected that living in the countryside will make me feel so happy. Mind you – this is unusual countryside, different from most of those I have seen before. It is situated in the heart of Yorkshire Dales National Park. One day I will write about it, but today I want to take you for a journey to the Yorkshire coast. What can be better than great company, picnic basket full of yummy food and beautiful surroundings?

This time we have decided to go to the Robin Hood’s Bay, which is located few miles south of Whitby on the east coast in North Yorkshire Moors National Park. The origin of the name is uncertain, and it is doubtful if Robin Hood ever visited bay. According to legend the bay may be called Robin Hood's Bay because he went out in his fishing trip and he encountered pirates, got them to surrender and returned the goods that the pirates had robbed during the plundering of the northeast coast of England to the poor people. There is not a scrap of evidence to suggest that this legend is true.

The town surrounded by moors has a tradition of smuggling. Certainly a maze of tiny streets and labyrinths helped smugglers and there is reputed to be a network of underground passageways linking the houses. Today prices of the properties in the town are extremely high.

On Monday the cloudy sky welcomed us to the bay, and sun was only coming out for few minutes to highlight the spectacular cliffs. We have climbed a green bank and sat there enjoying feta & sundried tomatoes muffins, onion & salami flatbreads and spiced rhubarb cake. Rather cheap Merlot in a small bottle never tasted better.

Today I look bit like one of the garden dwarfs with red cheeks and nose. My face did not feel any sunburn due to the cold, refreshing sea breeze.

On our way back we stopped in Whitby which is an absolute “must see” when visiting Yorkshire cost, next to Scarborough. It is very commercial place and you can find there lovely old town, pier, sandy beach, ruins St. Hilda’s abbey and ancient cemetery as well as candyfloss, amusement arcade, rough people dressed in track suits and golden chains.

Most importantly from culinary point of view you can also find the best fish & chips that we ever had in England. It is just behind the best fish & chips in whole UK, which we had on Orkney, in Kirkwall.

The one we had was very common, although not served in newspaper. The portion I had was far too big for me, but I have managed to eat all of the haddock (quite like the cod, but it was even bigger!) and gave some chips away to the seabirds. They quite enjoy my chips, even with the vinegar. I enjoyed this fish & chips on the bench and when I came back home I never though about even looking into a fridge.

If you fancy something more posh and do not get upset when queuing for a table try Magpie Cafe. This is the most popular place to eat in Whitby and well known by its great menu. And it does not cost you too much as well. If you order a small portion try to remember that you are in Yorkshire, where people like a proper hearty food, so small portion does not always mean small, and it is good to leave some space for the dessert.

Talking about dessert you must try some cakes from Bothams of Whitby served with Wensleydale cheese made just about 15 miles from where I live. This is possibly the UK's longest surviving tea room, trading since 1865.

If you bellies are full now you can enjoy the old town and maze of tiny streets and go up 199 stairs to see the abbey and fantastic views of the town, pier and cliffs from within the abbey. No wonder Bram Stoker was inspired by its gothic splendour when writing "Dracula". The local merchants try to make money based upon this story, so horror gadgets or Goth’s outfits are easy to buy in the town.

Whitby is also known as a home of famous Cook, who was not born in the town but his training as a seaman began in Whitby. Therefore you can visit his museum or see a statue of him.

I could write a lot about Whitby and possibly I have missed a lot important things about this place such as lovely foot paths, museums, ancient churches or sea trips. It is all worth seeing; we have seen it before and every time anybody who does not live locally is visiting us we take him to Whitby. This time we decided we are having a relaxing day out – just to chill out and have some nice food. We came back home the same night but we were not sad or disappointed – we only came back from one beautiful place to another…