Tag Archives: food

Homemade bread for Ploughmans lunch


Today I made bread for the first time. Just a simple white bloomer but it has given me the bug and I won’t be buying bread from now on (says she in her post first loaf glory).

First bakes rarely turn out well for me but this bread turned out better than I could have imagined. The house smells fantastic, the first warm slice with some cheese and red wine made a delicious Sunday supper and I’m looking forward to a Ploughmans packed lunch tomorrow.

Have you ever baked bread? Let me know what you suggest for round two!

Afternoon tea – how do you eat yours?

When we were in Rye (yeah, I’m still going on about that) we decided that once the Royal baby arrived we would ‘celebrate’ with a traditional cream tea. For some reason we needed an excuse and that was the most apt reason we could come up with.

The baby didn’t arrive during our time in Rye. So on our last afternoon we tucked into scones, jam and clotted cream for no other reason than we really wanted to. On doing so we questioned the proper way to prepare a scone: is it the cream or the jam that goes on the scone first?

Help me out – how do you eat yours?!

Sunday Selection

Happy Sunday! I’ve just got back from my summer holiday – I took a trip to Rye in East Sussex and had a wonderful time. We took a day trip to Camber beach, wandered up and down cobbled streets and stopped for afternoon drinks in pub gardens. It was the perfect British summer holiday with the added bonus of actual sunshine.

I tried to stay away from the Internet so I came home to a huge build up of new posts in Feedly. I’m slowly working my way through them but for now here is a taster of what I discovered this week yesterday and this morning on the Internet.

An East London shop front that took my fancy

A fake tube train at Bankside Gallery (not quite as great as the tube train on display in Block 9 at Glastonbury)

Have you ever raced up The Monument? If you don’t fancy racing up it, try walking up it. Slowly.

I love this image too. ‘What seems ordinary today could seem extraordinary tomorrow’.


After visiting VOC for cocktails (much earlier this year!) we popped across to Camino to tuck into tapas and drink some sherry.

We opted for a small carafe of sherry and it was much nicer than the Bergamot Grog I had next door.

I’d never been to Camino before but it had been on my agenda for a while. I’ve since gone back a number of times; Kings Cross is an ideal halfway meeting point for some of my friends so when we want an easy Saturday night catch-up we’ll often head here.

Tapas tends to be expensive and disappointing in London once you’ve experienced the real deal in Spain, but Camino is a welcome change and a great addition to the Kings Cross restaurant scene. That night we shared six dishes, including my favourite Mahón frito (cow cheese fritters with tomato jam) and left pleasantly full.

Tapas is for sharing and every time I have been I have been in the presence of a vegetarian, so although I can’t comment on the meat they do have a good choice of vegetarian options which is always nice to see. Just like in Barcelona I didn’t miss the meat as the vegetarian options were delicious in their own right. The Crema Catalan is almost as good as Pizarro’s which is as good a sign as any.

Tapas never works out cheap but it was a reasonable price for a lovely meal. Six dishes between two is enough, but you can always add to that throughout the night if there are too many things on the menu that you fancy.

Camino on Urbanspoon

Sunday Selection

What a miserable week it has been in London – the weather is rubbish at the moment. You can’t go anywhere without an umbrella yet you get an occasional taste of ‘summer’ for an hour or two each day. I wish we could have one warm and dry day so I could spend it on Hampstead Heath, reading the papers and eating ice cream.

If you do visit Hampstead Heath, try ParkGrid, a new way to find your friends that means no more walking around for hours on end trying to spot them amongst the masses – http://parkgrid.co.uk/

This is one of my favourite blogs of all time, and she’s just got back from a trip to the Amalfi Coast in Italy. Get ready to be jealous – http://www.jacquelynclark.com/2013/06/17/maiori-minori-the-amalfi-coast-part-i/

A recipe for a cauliflower crust pizza that I’m planning to try this week – http://www.eat-drink-smile.com/2011/04/cauliflower-crust-pizza.html

I was trawling through my bookmarks and found these 130 Years Of Brooklyn Bridge Photos, Decade By Decade – http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2013/05/22/130_years_of_brooklyn_bridge_photos_decade_by_decade.php

Have a great week!

ps do you prefer seeing the link in the body of the article?

Herbal teas and some scary facts about your coffee

A few weeks ago I was sent some herbal teas to try from Higher Living. The peppermint is delicious and naturally caffeine free, although I must admit I haven’t yet found the courage to try the Sweet Chilli tea – any volunteers?!

As is the norm with PR samples, I received a press release from Higher Living a few days ago following up our initial contact. I’ve never copied a press release before (I usually delete them and wonder why on earth a PR thinks I’m interested in writing about fake tan) but their follow up email contained some facts I feel like I have to share. I know a lot of people who will be shocked how many calories they drink without realising in a day.

High calorie drinks

1. Starbucks large peppermint mocha with whipped cream – 730 calories

2. Caffe Nero white chocolate mocha – 624 calories: equivalent to 2 x pain au chocolat

3. Costa Coffee hazelnut latte with semi skimmed milk – 599 calories: equivalent to six Chicken McNuggets and a Coke

4. Starbucks Grande signature hot chocolate with whole milk – 556 calories: equivalent to a large chicken and bacon baguette with mayonnaise

6. Starbucks Venti strawberries and cream frappucino with whipped cream – 459 calories

7. Caffe Nero whole milk caramel frappe latte – 455 calories: equivalent to a large glass of white wine and some pretzels

8. Starbucks whole milk mocha frappuccino with whipped cream: 532 calories

9. Costa coffee whole milk vanilla latte – 364 calories: equivalent to a Greggs cheese and onion

10. Starbucks whole milk caramel macchiato – 337 calories: equivalent to a pint of beer and bag of ready salted crisps

Obviously drinking whole milk means you consume more calories than if you chose skimmed, but the scary thing is the calories and rubbish that go into the syrups. I rarely buy coffee with syrup (if it is good coffee, why mask the taste?) and this list just sums up why.

Day out: Epping Forest

Epping Forest London

E is for… Essex

Last weekend was a bank holiday which meant that we had to follow that unwritten British rule and head out into the great outdoors, regardless of the weather. So we decided that it was about time that we took a longish trip to the deepest darkest depths of the Central Line and before I had a moment to do my best TOWIE impression we were in Epping Forest, in the countryside, surrounded by trees with the sun miraculously beating down on us.

It was, quite frankly, wonderful. We walked and walked and walked and drunk in England in all its fine green glory before finding a pub, ordering a shandy and tucking into some tasty gastro grub.

Have you ever been to Epping Forest? I’d love to go back with a plan – can you recommend a walking route?