Tina and Street Art – a match made in East London.


Delicious Cakes!


It was always our intention to make Tina’s a creative space.

Having lived in Dalston for many years, and experiencing more ‘artistic differences’ with the local dealers, prostitutes and the wheelchair bound woman who would sit outside the bookies and ask for £1 than actual artists, who knew it would turn into the hub of creativity it has now become.

We had this amazing, light filled corner plot with a couple of large white walls, so it seemed the obvious decision to allow artists to come in and paint/draw/stick/rub their paint-covered naked bodies directly onto the walls…and then change it every 8 weeks.  All cafes do that, right?  It won’t involve many nights painting the walls back to white ready for the next person?  They’ll be no hangovers from the Private Views??

We are honoured to have been approached by so many great artists, and been given the opportunity to have their work at Tina We Salute You.  We now count some of them as dear friends, and it’s been exciting to have seen so many go onto greater things and produce awesome work!

Here are just a few of our favourites:



Ben Slow

Ben Slow



Ant Carver


Ant Carver


Ant Carver




Camille Walala


Camille Walala


Camille Walala








My fourth bake as part of this Delicious Magazine opus is the perenial cafe favourite, Millionaire’s Shortbread.  Layers of shortbread, caramel and dark chocolate…amazing and extremely good for you!


Millionaire’s Shortbread


For the shortbread:

175g softened, unsalted butter

75g caster sugar

250g plain flour

For the caramel:

100g unsalted butter

50g dark muscovado sugar

50g golden syrup

2 x 397g cans condensed milk

1tsp vanilla paste

For the topping:

300g dark chocolate (70% cocoa)


1- in a large bowl, mix together the 175g butter, caster sugar and flour until it resembles fine breadcrumbs.  Tip this into a deep, baking paper lined 30cm x 20cm baking tin.  Press down, and prick with a fork.  Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden.  Allow to cool.

2- make the caramel.  In a heavy-based pan, melt together the butter, muscavado sugar, golden syrup, vanilla and condensed milk.  Bring to a simmer over a low heat, and allow to cook until a golden caramel colour.  Stir often to prevent caramel sticking and burning.  Pour over the cooled shortbread and leave to set.

3- melt chocolate in the microwave in 30 second bursts, stirring inbetween.  Pour over the caramel and allow to cool completely.  Slice into squares and serve.




Baking Adventures…in the style of Indiana Jones (but with more whipping)!



Delicious Cakes!


My first foray into the giddy world of semi-professional baking came at the age of 6.  My loving Mum and Dad (though never forceful, demanding or insistent that I become a ‘World Champion of Anything’) thought it would be a good idea for me to make a cake to serve at a small family gathering.  Inspired, I gazed out over this new land of trust, youthful ambition and potential adulation and worked on a recipe.  It had to be good!  It had to wow the crowd!  If my childhood hero, Michael Jackson, happened to be hungry and in the neighbourhood; it would need to make him ‘hee hee’ with joy!!

After a good 5 minutes of thought I had the perfect cake.  Lets go to the supermarket, buy a chocolate Swiss roll and cover it in whipping cream.  Hurrah!

Days later I was the toast of the party.  There was nothing I could not achieve.  My baking ego had stepped out of the shadows of playing in the park or bashing the rubber keys of my Z X Spectrum, and had blossomed into a thing of Gas Mark 9 / 240C beauty.

My next effort would therefore be a head turner.  It would redefine the essence of cake.

I opted for a souflle.

It was crap!


Take a few moments to compose yourself, and remember that I’ve actually turned out ok.  Look at this next bake in my Delicious Magazine journey, and you’ll see I’m no longer that precocious 6 year old who probably needed a slap.


Salted Chocolate and Dulce de Leche tart


Tina in the woods

For the pastry:

210g plain flour

45g icing sugar

112g unsalted butter

1 and a half egg yolks

For the filling:

2 tins of condensed milk

400g dark chocolate (I used 70% cocoa)

150ml double cream

Knob of butter

1/2 tsp Maldon sea salt flakes, plus extra to scatter as decoration

You will need a 23cm x 5cm deep loose-bottomed, fluted tart tin



1- Make the dulce de leche.  Place the tins of condensed milk in a deep saucepan and totally cover with water.  Bring water to the boil, and leave to cook at a good simmer for 2 hours with the lid on.  Do not pierce the cans, and make sure to check the water levels often.  Top up as needed.  Once cooked, leave cans to cool.

2- Make the pastry.  In a large bowl mix together the flour and icing sugar.

3- Chop butter into small cubes.  The smaller the cubes, the less time it needs working into the flour.  Rub butter into flour until mixture looks like breadcrumbs.

4- Add egg yolks and use your hand to combine until everything comes together into a ball.  Wrap in clingfilm and put in the fridge to rest.

5- I find roughly grating the chilled pastry into the case and pressing it down allows for greater control of the pastry depth.  Make sure the base of the tin is completely covered, then work the grated pasty into the fluted sides.  Roll a rolling pin over the top of the tart tin to remove excess pastry and give a clean finish. Prick with a fork and place in the freezer for 10 minutes.

6- Turn oven to 220C / Gas Mark 7.  Bake the pastry case for 7-8 minutes.  Keep a close eye as it can burn easily.  Remove from oven and leave to cool on a wire rack.

7- Open tins of cooled condensed milk and scoop into a bowl.  It will have turned into a thick, light brown dulce de leche caramel.  Give this a quick stir to loosen it up and then spoon into the pastry case.

8- Put chocolate, cream, butter and sea salt into a bowl over a pan of simmering water.  Do not let bottom of the bowl touch the water as this will cause the chocolate to burn.  Stir occasionally until the chocolate has fully melted and the mix looks smooth and shiny.  Cover with cling film and leave to cool to room temperature.

9- Spoon chocolate over the dulce de leche until completely covered.  Scatter with a few pinches of sea salt flakes.  Chill until set.




Salted chocolate and dulce de leche tart


Nigel Grimmer


These images of Tina were created by  London based artist, Nigel Grimmer.  We spoke with Nigel years ago about these pieces, and were very happy when he agreed to let us enlarge one of them to create a perfect backdrop to the main dining area at Tina We Salute You, E20.  The new Tinas is in the Olympic Park, so it seemed fitting to have a mural of Tina in the woods.

Check out more of his work at http://www.nigelgrimmer.com/

“You want to open a cafe in Dalston???”


Delicious Cakes!


“You want to open a cafe?

In Dalston??

A cafe…in Dalston?  It’s not even on the tube!”


We got this a lot when we started to plan the opening of Tina’s in 2008.  Yeah it was rough back then…drugs, prostitution, a lack of ironic fashion, but hey, if you were in the market for one or two of those things it was Heaven on Earth.

One afternoon, we heard that a site we had tendered for in Shoreditch had fallen through.  Fed up, I went for a bike ride around the neighbourhood and stumbled upon King Henry’s Walk.  It was sunny, the cherry blossom was out and I spotted an empty corner unit with great (though broken) windows and a view of a church and terraced houses.

Within months, the site was secured and the fit-out started.

Seven years later we ask ourselves, “With the benefit of hindsight would we do it all again?”  The answer can range from the giddy high of someone who is overly desperate to be your friend, to the duldrum low of realising that said new ‘friend’ has moved on really quickly; won the Health Lottery and become Instagram friends with Beyonce!

A more indepth response to come next week…

This week the lovely people at Delicious Magazine suggested I make this cake.  Personally, I am not a huge fan of Carrot Cake, though my Carrot & Banana cake is sung about in old people’s homes across the land.  However, for the sake of artistic integrity; and because I’ve heard some of the folks who work at Delicious are real bruisers, I swallowed my pride, girded my loins and got baking.


Carrot and Parsnip cake with Rose frosting


Carrot and Parsnip cake

4 medium-free range eggs

225ml sunflower oil

100g soft brown sugar

75g caster sugar

4 tbsp maple syrup

2 tsp ground ginger

300g self-raising flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda

100g chopped pecans

250g grated carrot

100g grated parsnip

1- grease and line a deep, 20cm loose bottomed cake tin.  Put the eggs, sugars, oil and maple syrup into a large bowl and mix with an electric mixer until pale and creamy.

2- sift ginger, flour, baking powder and bicarb into the sugar mixture. Add grated carrot, parsnip and pecans.  Fold in.

3- spoon batter into the prepared tin, smooth the top and bake for 80 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean.  Leave to cool on a wire rack, and remove from tin.

For the icing

450g cream cheese

200ml double cream

1tsp rose water

Juice and zest of 1/2 lemon

75g icing sugar

1- mix cream cheese and cream together in a large bowl until smooth.  Add rose water, lemon juice and zest.  Fold in icing sugar. Place in fridge for 30 mins to firm up slightly.

2- decorate cooled cake with the icing and an arrangement of edible flowers.  Our cake was also decorated with candied carrot, candied parsnip and jelly fruit diamonds

Carrot & Parsnip cake

Carrot & Parsnip cake


Ummmm….who’s Tina?



Delicious cakes!


So, I’ve started a blog and this is my first ever post about the Delicious Magazine baking journey that I have embarked on.  I promised myself that today this would be up and online ready for my tens of followers to read, digest and clap themselves on the back for knowing me, but, it’s 6.30pm and numerous distractions such as phoning my Mum, playing with the dog, or fighting rampant hoards of French teenagers on Call Of Duty online have managed to keep my baking bon voyage firmly anchored.

One of the worst questions you can ask me is ‘who’s Tina?’.  I’ll be nice to your face, but behind your back or in the safety of the cafe kitchen my eyes will roll.  The one true answer is this:



Tina was painted by a British artist called J H Lynch in the 1960’s.  Myself and Danny wanted a cafe name that had no reflection as to what we did or sold.  We had a picture of Tina, drank a bottle of wine and harnessed the creative power of alcohol. Tina We Salute You was the first name we thought of!  Apologies that the name history isn’t hugely exciting or even that interesting, and feel free to never ask me about it again.

My ego is currently trying to dictate that I enthral a captive audience with tales from my childhood, but lets save those for another post.  We are here for cake!

My first ever bake in this Delicious adventure is from the February 2013 issue.  I decided on trying the Chocolate Cheesecake (p.100).  This recipe is straight forward and easy to follow, but I doubled the measurements so as to get a really deep chocolate cheese layer.  The cooking time was significantly increased, but the resulting cake is perfectly dense, not too rich and full of flavour.


Chocolate Cheesecake with Orange and Apricot



Chocolate cheesecake


200g dark chocolate digestive biscuits, finely crushed

3tbsp cocoa powder

100g unsalted butter, melted

200g apricot paste sheet, chopped (found in Turkish or Middle Eastern food stores)

Juice of 1 lemon and 1 orange

Zest of 1 orange.

Seeds from 1 vanilla pod

600ml whipping cream

250g dark chocolate (70% cocoa), broken into pieces and melted

700g full-fat cream cheese

300 caster sugar

2 large eggs

3tbsp cornflour


1 – Blitz or bash biscuits into fine crumbs and mix with the cocoa and melted butter.  Spoon into a greased, 18cm round springform tin and press down until smooth.  Put in the fridge to chill and set.

2- Break chocolate into small pieces and place in a large bowl.  Bring cream to the boil and pour over the chocolate.  Stir until melted and mixed, leave to cool slightly.

3- Cut apricot paste sheet into small pieces using scissors.  Place in a small saucepan with the lemon and orange juice and stir until melted and smooth.  Pour this over the chilled biscuit base, spread evenly and return to the fridge.

4- Put cream cheese, cornflour, eggs and sugar in a large bowl and beat until smooth.  Add the vanilla seeds, orange zest and stir to combine.

5- Add the warm chocolate mixture to the cream cheese and fold together.  Pour this over the base and level.

6- Bake in a 130C oven for 1 hour, or until the edges are set, but it is still wobbly in the middle.  Remove from over, allow to cool and then place in the fridge for 2 hours or overnight.


If all goes to plan, and you havn’t embarked on this bake after a few vodkas you should end up with a cheesecake to make Mummy proud.


Chocolate cheesecake

Chocolate cheesecake


*recipes for this blog have all been taken from the awesome Delicious Magazine.  Adaptations to the recipes and pictures of the bakes are all mine!

*large Tina picture created by Ant Carver  http://www.antcarver.com/



The ‘delicious’ challange!


Brought to you by non-award winning, Great British Bake Off 2nd round interviewee and Tina We Salute You founder Steve Hawkes


Butterscotch pavlova with baked plums and berries

So…im a pretty good baker. Scratch that, I’m a really good baker!! No training of any kind, but for some reason I can usually turn my hand to any baking task that comes my way.
I thought it was about time I properly embraced this ‘gift’ and start posting recipes, pictures, methods, techniques and videos about the cakes I make.

Over the years I have collected a large number of Delicious magazines which always contain the recipe for an amazing bake. Each week I am going to choose, or let Tina customers choose the cake I make.
I’ll be posting about it online, and selling the finished masterpiece in Tina We Salute You E20.

Come and let me know what you think.  Feedback, comments and naked selfies are always appreciated!