The main reason Alae and I became friends was because we're both 'live to eat' kind of girls. Most of our socialising is based around eating, so when we heard about the Groundnut supper club were promising contemporary African food set in St Johns Hall in London Bridge, we got in touch straight away to make sure we got a spot. It turned into a bit of a 'that awkward moment when' you gatecrash a dinner party as it turned out everyone else knew founders Duval, Folayemi and Jacob, but the round your mate's vibe ended up being the right side of intimate and cosy.
I knew we were on to a winner when we were greeted with grapefruit cocktails and plantain chips but as my only knowledge of West African food is a failed attempt at making jollof rice for a Nigerian ex-boyfriend, the groundnut soup starter was an early highlight. I'm not sure how it compared to traditional recipes, but the nutty and spicy flavours were delicious and warming.
It was testament to the boys culinary skill that I even ate the main course because okra and oxtail are two of my most likely to offend me foods. Okra is usually too slimy, and oxtail I can never find the meat for the fat, but Groundnut's mulled oxtail and fried okra both actually went down well. The oxtail was soft, rich and mulling, while the okra crunchy enough that it had a few chews in it before the slime hit. Dessert was cute little custard yorkshire puddings with edible biscuit bowls filled with fruity goodness which ended up being just the right way to end the evening. (Did I mention you could eat the bowls?)
Good food, a good crowd and good conversation always equals good times, and Groundnut had just the right mix of people to provide all three. The interesting take on African ingredients, with nods to their Euro heritage, left us both feeling a bit inspired to experiment with the way we cook our own traditional foods. They have a recipe book and more supper clubs coming next year, so we'd definitely recommend visiting their website. They're cuties who can cook, how can you not check them out?