I was a few days away from leaving work, sick and exhausted, didn't really know what it was all about but wrote it in my diary for November and sort of forgot about it. The girls had eaten breakfast there once or twice and other people I know had raved about it, but as it's so far away from where I live ( about 40 minutes south) it's not on my radar at all.
The Sunday dawned and I was ill and delerious from the insomnia, and my husband deemed me to too sick to drive so he drove my friend and I to the bakery. He is the kindest person ever.
Well , the bakery is AMAZING. It encompasses a big supermarket packed to the rafters with middle eastern food and cooking ingredients; a bakery, producing cakes and breads, and a cafe: just look at the breakfast menu and tell me you're not tempted.
Upstairs is the cooking demonstration room, where 18 of us sat in a horseshoe arrangement and watched chef Marwa and her assistant Nicole make vegie burghul, maftoul salad and dawood basha
( spicy lamb meatballs in a tomato sauce), all the while talking about cooking and food and techniques in a really entertaining way while she cooked. Then we were all served a most magnificent dinner, along with Lebanese coffee and little sweets, and hot spicy apple tea.
The last part of the night was where we were taken through the supermarket, able to buy all the special ingredients used in the dinner. I just bought some bread, pomegranate molasses and the apple tea and some garlic dip and spice paste: other people filled trolleys!
Even if you don't want to do a class, you really should go and see the incredible range at the supermarket, particularly if you like middle eastern cooking. Every spice, sauce, oil you could ever want in cooking, just amazing. The classes are wildly popular but book ahead and go with friends - nearly the whole room was groups of women having a lovely alternative to a night out in a restaurant.