Tom Flint: Brighton food critics cook up a storm for charity

Too Many Critics fundraising event for Action Against Hunger
Too Many Critics fundraising event for Action Against Hunger

Last Sunday I was lucky enough to take part in the first Brighton Action Against Hunger “Too Many Critics” pop up at The Set in Regency Square.

Semone Bonner and Dan Kenny, co-owners of The Set, were very brave in handing their kitchen over to a bunch of amateurs and I applaud their courage in doing so.

First was Eshé (www.foodieeshe.com) with her pre-meal snacks of chicken liver parfait and a pea mojito on melba toast. Our first test as a team in getting a dish out but it all went fairly smoothly, if you ignore the squeezy bottle malfunction resulting in a mild shallot puree mishap.

Up next was Fran (www. thegraphicfoodie.co.uk) with her charred radicchio starter. Graphic Foodie expertly plated her dish, and put out a fantastic looking plate of food. As we were in the kitchen I didn’t get to taste much but Andy P of Common claimed on Twitter that Fran ‘smashed it’. Next up Rosie of www.rosieposiespuddingsandpies.co.uk had the fish course. Rosie gave herself quite a task by hand folding prawn dumplings for 30 people and making a ramen with monkfish and miso egg. The dish was the most complex of the day but it went out without a hitch, winning over a customer who normally shuns a fish and egg combo.

Meat main was up next from the first of our two Brighton’s Best Restaurant creators. Andy Lynes Sussex lamb rump with stuffed onion and salsa verde was a classic crowd-pleaser and looked superb. This ended up being the staff meal for The Set team later and was a delicious dish.

I was next with a pre-dessert take on cheese, consisting of a ricotta and lemon thyme drizzle cake, goats cheese ice cream and pink peppercorns. Having pre-made most of it all I had to do was badly quenelle ice-cream and plate up. It was great to get the dish out which was described as ‘delicious’ by @CanTinaBrighton on twitter. The meal was completed by Euan Macdonald of Brighton’s Best Restaurants who channelled his inner ‘70s self with a Rum Baba, pineapple and liquorice ice cream. A big boozy and bountiful end to a fabulous event which went down well with the guests.

This was just one event, raising more than £2,000 which will help save the lives of 47 children and nurse them back to health, but the fight against hunger goes on. If you want to support Action Against Hunger you can donate on their website or through The Set’s Just Giving Page www.justgiving.com/fundraising/The-Set-Restaurant2