Celebrate MFDF with DIY cooking kits from Tast, Hawksmoor, YaoYao Ramen and more

Although there’s not going to be a Manchester Food Festival hub in Cathedral Gardens this year after all, there are still plenty of ways to get involved and support some of your favourite restaurants. Many of the fringe collaborations and event-long discounts will still be running, and of course, you can still cast you vote for the Manchester Food and Drink Awards. (See the full shortlist.)

Many restaurants have also come up with DIY meal kits to help you create some of their signature dishes in your own home (and you don’t have to be finished and out by 10am.) The experts have done most of the hard work and prep for you, so all you need to do is follow the instructions, lay it all out with a flourish and enjoy. 

Here are some great ones you might want to try out.

2020 09 02 Mdfd 2020 Yao Yao Noodles

Yao Yao Noodles – Ramen Kits 

If you’ve been missing the tranquil expertise of renowned Japanese food experts, Umezushi, the great news is that head chef Omar Rodriguez has set up his own Ramen Noodle business, Yao Yao. Not only are they totally delicious, they’re really fun to put together too - just warm-up the broth, chop-up the garnishes, reheat the meats and cook the noodles. 

Each ramen kit contains enough ingredients to prepare two generous bowls of ramen for £18 and everything has been made by hand - noodles, rich 12 hour broth (seasoned with things like white miso, kombu seaweed, katsuobushi and soy sauce), sauces, marinated and cooked meats and garnishes. They even send the chilli oil separately so you can choose your own spice level. A recipe card gives step-by-step instructions and tips.

Choose from chicken sesame garlic noodles, pork tonkotsu w/ shiro miso, shoyu tori paitan w/ sichuanese chilli oil and the vegan shiitake & kombu broth w/ aka miso made with dried shiitake mushrooms, kombu Japanese seaweed, charred onions and leeks. YaoYao have also partnered up with other small local businesses to offer delicious drinks, pickles and more, which you can add to your kits.

Delivery is free when ordering 2 kits or more. Delivery days are Tuesday to Saturday. Everything will arrive in a well-insulated box that will keep your ingredients cold for over 48 hours. All packaging is recyclable. 

2020 09 23 Blu Caribou Poutine Kit

Blue Caribou Canteen - Poutine Meal Kit 

Although poutine is strictly a Canadian dish, it contains three ingredients that all Northerners will have an opinion on - chips, cheese and gravy. But you’re not going to get the same experience cracking open the Mcain’s, Bisto and Cathedral City.

You might know Blue Caribou from their stall in the Arndale Market, or various events, food festivals and markets or from their stint on Million Pound Menu. Over lockdown, they launched a do-it-yourself poutine kit, which is a great idea because it’s whey hard to get proper curd cheese for that authentic Quebec style taste.

If you want an authentic Canadian home experience that isn’t maple syrup related, order their ‘Classic Poutine Kit‘ (meat, vegetarian or vegan available - £11) or pimped up varieties like General Tao Poutine, Doner Poutine, Korean Poutine or their signature Reuben Poutine, all £15.00 with £6.50 shipping. There are also plenty of sides and extras such as MORE CHEESE CURDS available, plus full instructions. 

Blue Caribou orders are dispatched on Wednesdays for next-day delivery, via Royal Mail’s 24hr service. All orders are packed in insulated packaging and will remain in a cool condition for more than 48 hours. 

2020 09 23 Hawksmoor At Home Steak Dinner

Hawksmoor - The ultimate steak kit

Our editor had so much fun trying out the first Hawkmoor at Home kit she was thrilled to discover they’ve come up with another version.

Inside the box is everything you might need for an easy-to-prepare top of the range steak night; two dry-aged fillet steaks from the same grass-fed traditional-breed cattle they use in the restaurants, bone marrow and Madeira jus (for making bone marrow gravy), creamed spinach, and Matt Brown’s ‘ultimate oven chips’ (which arrive nestling amongst nuggets of beef dripping ready for a blast in the oven). 

Hawksmoor are feeders, so they’ve even included two portions of their sticky toffee puddings with clotted cream to dollop on top.

The group’s drinks-king, Liam Davy, has also been working on the liquid side of things. You’ll find a sour cherry negroni for two, along with a bottle of Rosso Braida, which matches perfectly with fillet steak and two cans of Hawksmoor Lager.

The cut off for ordering each week is Monday at 12pm.  Hawksmoor at Home, £125 including delivery, serves two very hungry (and thirsty) people.

2020 06 26 Dishoom Bacon Naan Roll Kit Charlie Mc Kay2 Copy

Dishoom - Recreate their famous bacon naan roll 

Dishoom’s classic breakfast dish is available for UK wide delivery. Our Kelly ordered one of these over the lockdown period, so read her write up if you’d like to know more.

The package is £16 plus postage and serves two. You get eight rashers of applewood and beechwood smoked streaky bacon from Ramsay of Carluke, some of Dishoom’s tomato-chilli jam, a pot of thick cream cheese, some chopped coriander and three dough balls (the third is there in case you mess up your first attempt at doing the naan). 

There is also loose leaf darjeeling tea, whole chai spices and fresh ginger to make a large pot of sweet chai tea - but you'll need to add your own milk and sugar. For every kit ordered they also donate a meal to a hungry schoolchild via Magic Breakfast- something they do in the restaurant too. You order in advance and can choose your delivery date. 

2020 09 23 Tast At Home

Tast at Home – Creamy mushroom rice

Manchester’s newest (hot off the press) restaurant at home delivery service brings a taste of Tast Catala to the comfort of your own home. Executive head chef of the Catalan restaurant on King Street is no less than Paco Perez, a master and ambassador of Catalan Gastronomy who has seven restaurants around the world and five Michelin stars. 

Paco and his team (including Tast’s head chef Alejandro Calvo Maestro) have come up with a way for people to recreate one of their seasonal rice dishes at home. You get a recipe box of creamy rice with mushrooms with a cook along video available through a QR code. You can choose from vegetarian or meat broth to complete the dish.

Deliveries will be on the 1st October so all orders need to be placed between 24th - 30th September via the QR code on the Tast website, or email hola@tastcatala.com - time slots are available on booking. 

The kits are £20 per person and you can add one, two or three types perfectly matched bottles of Catalan wines; Can Estruc White or Red wine £12 pounds, or even a bottle of La Mundial Sangria for £15.

Here are two more cook at home boxes we wanted to tell you about...

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Myself and the team here at WOOD Manchester are relaunching the WOOD at HOME delivery service locally from this Friday (25/09), we appreciate that new restrictions mean that you can’t all get out and socialise as we all would like. With this in mind I have created an all new WOOD at Home ‘Five course tasting menu’ offer for two people, including 2 x serving bowls and cooking & plating instructions in your Wood @ Home kit. Price: £110 + £10 delivery (Gtr Manchester only for now). ‪ ‬ ‪To order, please call between 11am & 4pm Monday to Wednesday.‬ (Limited boxes). 📞 0161 236 5211 T&C’s Apply. ‪ ‬ ‪Happy cooking!‬ and thank you again for all your continued support ❤️ #WoodManchester
A post shared by Simon Wood (@simonjwooduk) on

WOOD at HOME delivery service

Because new restrictions mean that you can’t all get out and socialise as we all would like, Simon Wood and the team at WOOD Manchester are re-launching their WOOD at HOME delivery service locally from this Friday (25/09.) 

We loved the last one, but now Simon has created an all new WOOD at Home ‘five course tasting menu’ for two people with dishes including salt baked celeriac, onion consommé, Cornish crab crumpet, fillet steak with osso bucco ragu and ‘the After Eight’ mint chocolate demi sphere. 

There are only a limited number of Wood @ Home kits which cost £110 + £10 delivery (Gtr Manchester only for now) and each box includes two serving bowls as well as cooking and plating instructions.

‪To order call 0161 236 5211 between 11am - 4pm Monday to Wednesday. 

2020 09 23 Lowry At Home Sunday Lunch

Lowry @ Home - Sunday lunch

The Lowry’s recently launched Sunday roast box is a really good one. Our only slight criticism is you have to collect this box as the Lowry isn’t delivering - obviously not ideal if you have to rely on public transport. Also, the Sunday roast box is only available on… Sundays – although there’s an afternoon tea box available at other times and a soon-to-launch three-course dinner box, which will also be available at other times.

In fitting with The Lowry’s five-star status, the packaging is branded (down to the embossed tissue paper) and pristinely presented with silver edged menu and ‘methodology’ cards, so it feels like a treat from the off. The beef comes already cooked rare and thinly sliced so you have the option to either warm through to medium or just serve it on top of the hot cabbage, pour over hot, thick gravy and serve with the spuds.

It’s fun plating up the crayfish and prawn cocktail starter, piping little blobs of avocado on top of your creation. You also get sourdough with chicken fat butter and crispy chicken skin sprinkles plus sticky toffee pudding with butterscotch sauce topped with an indulgent blob of clotted cream for pud.

It’s not only the quickest Sunday dinner we’ve ever made but feels like total luxury - this is not your nan’s Sunday roast. These four (well three and bread) courses for two come in at in incredible £40.

For more details on Urmston's Fringe Festival and what events are still happening over Manchester Food and Drink Festival, visit the MFDF2020 website

Also read our update list of Manchester arts and culture - What’s reopening when?