The only way to make hot chocolate better is to add it to a board of all your favourite chocolate and sweet treats.
As the temperature drops and we battle to stay cosy in lockdown, its time for the return of the best winter drink, the humble hot chocolate.
A simple staple to any winter diet, a steaming hot cup of cocoa with whipped cream and plenty of mini marshmallows is the perfect way to warm up.
It might seem this festive drink is perfect but food bloggers have found a way to make it even better…
Introducing the Hot Chocolate Charcuterie Board, or platter, and they look just as incredible as they sound.
Taking hot chocolate to the next Instagramable level, use hot choc staples like cookies, marshmallows, chocolate sauce, chocolate sprinkles and anything else with chocolate you can get your hands on.
It’s the perfect way to make a sharing board out of a humble drink, perfect to fix lockdown boredom for at least a few minute while you build and munch your way through it.
Make it an ultimate festive affair with gingerbread men, candy canes and add on Terry’s chocolate orange or Quality Street for good measure.
Take inspiration from Chipper Shop with melted sauces like salted caramel and dark chocolate and have plenty to dip, including all your favourite sweet treats.
Or go large with an actual crockpot full of hot chocolate biscuits, chocolate fudge, doughnuts and even M&M’s like everyday_tables attempt.
Classmeetsmodern even put some pink wafer biscuits on theirs and I am not mad about it.
Will you be making one this festive season?
COMING SOON: Thai tapas and cocktail restaurant Giggling Squid is coming to Manchester
Giggling Squid specialises in sharing plates and cocktails with a Thai twist..
Spinningfields is set to gain an exciting new addition in the form of a Thai restaurant specialising in ‘Thai tapas’ and cocktails.
Giggling Squid initially started life in the basement of a tiny cottage in Brighton back in 2002 with the aim to serve ‘simple, rustic, fresh Thai food’ in a selection of small plates made for sharing.
The restaurant’s owner Pranee grew up on the banks of the Mekong River, visiting the local markets everyday with her mother at 5am, where she’d see ‘huge fish splashing in water tubs, transparent shrimps, an endless variety of herbs and vegetables’.
Following its opening, Giggling Squid has experienced massive success and has since opened over forty restaurants in various locations across the country.
And now, in its first proper venture up North, Giggling Squid will be coming to Manchester, where it will take over a vacant venue on Hardman Square, opposite The Ivy.
There will be a number of tasty items up for grabs on its Manchester menu, including starters made for sharing like Phuket Mussels, Samui Zingy Prawns, Salt & Pepper Squid and Chicken Satay.
There will also be a menu dedicated to the humble Pad Thai as well as the standard mains menu, which will be split into three categories; Stir Fry, From the Water and From the Land.
Also on the menu will be a huge range of unique cocktails, many of them with a distinctive Thai twist. Highlights include the Thai-spresso Martini with coconut coffee liqueur and toasted coconut flakes, and the Me Time Margarita made with muddled ginger and lemongrass and a curry-salt rim.
Giggling Squid’s Manchester site is set to open at some point in the new year, so make sure to follow them on Instagram for news and updates.
NEW OPENING: The Northern Quarter burger joint planting a tree for every meal bought
Fancy doing your bit for the environment while tucking into a Wagyu steak burger?
An environmentally-focussed new burger joint in Manchester’s Northern Quarter is promising to plant a tree for every meal bought.
New kids on the block Invisiburger is a ‘globally inspired, planet conscious and people focussed’ new addition to the city, having recently taken over the second floor of Stage & Radio over on Port Street after success in its flagship site in Liverpool.
And don’t worry, this isn’t your typical run-of-the-mill burger joint (because Manchester has plenty of those at the moment).
Unlike other restaurants of its kind, the team at Invisiburger is on a mission to create a zero waste fast food model, which will ensure that every ingredient they use is utilised from head-to-toe.
They’re also a certified member of the new ‘Sustainably Run Project’, meaning for every bill paid a fruit tree is planted. To put it in a nutshell, you can do your bit for the environment while simultaneously tucking into a banging burger. It’s a win-win!
The menu itself is split equally amongst vegan, Wagyu beef and Krispy Chicken options, each one with different toppings and special extras.
A definite menu highlight is the Surf & Turf Burger, made from a 100% Wagyu beef patty and juicy marinated prawns with house special sauce.
The menu also boasts a selection of tasty small plates, including vegan ‘Invisi-wings, Jalapeno Bhajis, Tiger Prawns with chilli, miso and garlic butter and a selection of loaded fries including Salt & Pepper Salsa Fries and Chilli, Miso & Garlic Butter Fries.
What a selection.
And, on Wednesdays you can get 3 Small Plates for £14 whilst on Fridays between 5pm – 6pm it’s their ‘INVISI-HOUR’ with classic burgers 2-for-1.
Invisiburger is open Wednesday – Friday, 5pm – 10pm and Saturday – Sunday, 2pm – late. Head over to their website for more information and to book a table.
NEW OPENING: A dedicated chicken wing restaurant has launched in Manchester
There’s a new chicken wing spot in town…
Manchester’s favourite urban village Hatch has gained an exciting new addition in the form of chicken wing restaurant Wing Dash.
Wing Dash comes courtesy of takeaway kings Burgerism, whose popularity skyrocketed during the 2020 lockdowns.
Operating from their dark kitchen in Salford, Burgerism became well known and loved for their (you guessed it) burgers, which have even been named as ‘the best burgers in Manchester’ by Mana’s Michelin-starred Head Chef, Simon Martin.
So, of course, we can expect some seriously good things from their latest venture, which takes a primary focus on the humble chicken wing.
Their latest venture sees their iconic Burgerism formula in the form of chicken wings with six options up for grabs; each wing, made from 100% British chicken, is brined for twenty-four-hours to ensure maximum flavour and tenderness.
They’re then coated in the special Burgerism signature coating and deep-fried, before being seasoned with one of six unique flavours including Piri-Piri, Buffalo, Atomic, BBQ, Garlic Parm and Lemon Pepper.
And for those wanting a meat-free alternative (or, like me, for those who just really love a bit of cauliflower), Wing Dash are also serving up their delicious Cauliflower Bites, which are sourced from a family-run farm in Preston available to order in any of the six seasonings.
Of course, there are also fries to be ordered alongside your wing haul, which are prepped fresh every day and topped with a generous sprinkle of chicken salt.