HB&B Blog — Claire Bullen

Wine & Food Killers: Shrimp Étouffée and Fin Wines I’m All Ears Pet Nat 2021

Australia Claire Bullen Natural wine Natural Wine Killers Pet Nat

Wine & Food Killers: Shrimp Étouffée and Fin Wines I’m All Ears Pet Nat 2021

Alongside gumbo and jambalaya, shrimp étouffée is a stalwart of Cajun and Creole cooking, and a classic New Orleans dish. Étouffée means “smothered” in French, and in this dish, pink prawns are enrobed in a saucy stew made with a base of the “Cajun holy trinity” – onion, celery, and green bell pepper – and a burnished roux, mixed with chillis and a potent Cajun spice mix, chopped tomatoes and fish stock. That mix is cooked down until thickened and glossy, served with rice, then garnished with handfuls of parsley. I tend to crave New Orleans-style cooking at this time...

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The Beer Lover's Table: Spring Chicken with Potatoes and Asparagus and Arpus TDH Strata x Nelson x Galaxy IPA

Arpus Beer Lover's Table Claire Bullen IPA Latvia

The Beer Lover's Table: Spring Chicken with Potatoes and Asparagus and Arpus TDH Strata x Nelson x Galaxy IPA

Years ago, when we all still lived in London, a group of friends and I developed a ritual: Every Sunday, we would meet at one of their houses for “family dinner”, which consisted unvaryingly of a roast chicken and potatoes. All of us lived far from family and these casual dinners quickly became a lifeline, a way to come together to enjoy a simple and comforting meal at the end of the week. The company was excellent, and the chicken was, too – juicy and moist every time, fresh with lemon and herbs, but never fussy. When I finally asked my...

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Wine & Food Killers: Oyster Mushroom, Wild Garlic and Chipotle Quesadillas with Kindeli Tinto 2020

Claire Bullen Natural wine Natural Wine Killers New Zealand Red wine

Wine & Food Killers: Oyster Mushroom, Wild Garlic and Chipotle Quesadillas with Kindeli Tinto 2020

If I am guilty of one thing every spring, it is of losing my shit over the annual return of wild garlic. I’m aware that I make a slightly parodic picture: The wayward urban forager who runs to that secret patch in the local woodland armed with a pair of kitchen shears, trying to keep my scarf from collecting too much dirt as I hunch over another patch of those glossy green leaves. But I’m happy looking foolish if it means walking away with a big ziploc bag stuffed with the seasonal bounty, trailed by an allium scent cloud that follows...

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The Beer Lover's Table: Caramelised Shallot and Tomato Pasta with Anchovies and Brick Brewery Dunkel

Beer Lover's Table Brick Brewery Claire Bullen Dunkel Lager SE London

The Beer Lover's Table: Caramelised Shallot and Tomato Pasta with Anchovies and Brick Brewery Dunkel

One of my favourite Instagram accounts belongs to my friend Katie. At @nytfortea, she reviews New York Times Cooking’s vegetarian (or veggie-adjacent) recipes, including star ratings, tweaks and overall impressions. The comments on NYT Cooking’s recipes are famously deranged – a mix of rambling personal stories and diatribes from people who swapped out half the ingredients and can’t understand why the recipe didn’t work – so instead, Katie’s Instagram has become a micro-recipe recommendation service, one I can always trust. Recently, Katie made Caramelised Shallot Pasta, and I recalled noting down the recipe nearly two years ago – in the early...

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Wine & Food Killers: Burrata and Mortadella Sandwiches with Pistachio Pesto and Podere Pradarolo Indocilis Rosso 2020

Claire Bullen Italy Natural wine Natural Wine Killers Red wine Sparkling wine

Wine & Food Killers: Burrata and Mortadella Sandwiches with Pistachio Pesto and Podere Pradarolo Indocilis Rosso 2020

Some of the very best things are simple. Sun on a winter morning after weeks of rain. A well-made cup of coffee, served at exactly the right temperature. Dinner with good friends. And a glass of well-made sparkling red wine, with all the richness of its hue and all the levity of high carbonation. Podere Pradarolo’s Indocilis Rosso is just such a wine. Hailing from near Parma in Emilia Romagna, this vino rosso frizzante looks almost like a kriek when it’s poured, glugging into the glass with a big souffle of pink foam before eventually settling down into hissing merriment. It is made from 100% Barbera...

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