28 June 2015

a dash of peru

F O O D S C H O O L || Taste Tripping Event

This week saw me learning all about Peruvian cuisine from chef Julio Brujis of Panka and team Grace Foods [aka the makers of Encona sauces] at the gorgeous Cactus Kitchens in Clapham [home of the Michel Roux Jr Cookery School]. Encona have recently released a Peruvian Amarillo chilli sauce as part of their Americas range and wanted to showcase their new saucy addition through a Peruvian cooking class. We attempted to make two classic dishes [fish cebiche and prawn quinotto] with the expert guidance of Peruvian chef Julio and the Cactus Kitchens team. Both dishes were super easy, healthy, fresh and tasty! Read on to see more of the venue, learn about Peruvian food and see how I got actually got on when let loose in the kitchen. Beware: many limes were hurt in this post :,(

where || Cactus Kitchens, 1 St Luke's Avenue, London SW4 7LG

21 June 2015

pause on the pangalan

T R A V E L & L I F E S T Y L E || Pangalan, Madagascar

Apparently, if asked to describe our lives the majority of us would say it was busy. This little four letter word then leads to us all wanting a well-deserved break because it can all get a bit too much. I feel you all, there's a lot going on, I've been there, I am there. This past week has seen a couple of friends embark on Ramadan and it's got me thinking about why more of us don't actively choose to take time out to just be [or simply feel guilty when we do]. Relaxing, taking time out, having a break shouldn't just be left for holidays and yoga classes. If it is, then we'll never be able to truly switch off when we get the opportunity to. All of this reminded me of the last time I was out in Madagascar, when my mum surprised me with a trip "to the beach". After a five hour drive, we arrived at this super remote village on the side of a large canal [the Pangalan], about to board two small river boats to our paradise destination for the following few days. It was genuinely in the middle of nowhere: an island with a canal full of caimans on one side and a vast ocean full of sharks on the other. I had no choice but to switch off, and I was really grateful for it. The constant go-go-go of city life can genuinely be hard to let go of, which makes you realise how valuable that pause really is.

click on for more photos to get into zen mode for the week!

14 June 2015

summery brunch

F O O D & P L A C E S || B&H Buildings

It may sometimes take a couple of months pre-organisation but brunch with my girls is always a hoot. In between jobs, travelling, houses and just pure LIFE it's always a pleasure to catch up with some of my oldest pals. Highly recommended by a few friends and colleagues, we ended up going for "bottomless brunch" [the new phenomenon in the dining world] at the B&H Buildings in Clerkenwell. At first, I wasn't sure how any of these places were making money if it was bottomless but went with it. Soon the fine print was made clear to us when the top-ups stopped flowing: "bottomless" for 1.5 hours from the time of booking [you've been warned]. So unless you're a stormer through brunch, it's not as crazy as it sounds. Nevertheless, the bubbles were a lovely touch to a tasty brunch and we found ourselves quickly giggling the afternoon away.

where || B&H Buildings, 42 Northampton Road, Clerkenwell, EC1R 0HU

7 June 2015

københavn living

T R A V E L & L I F E S T Y L E & F O O D || København, Denmark

I recently visited the wonderful city of København in Denmark with friends. I got to know the city and its main [very trendy] neighbourhoods in post one and now for post two I am taking you through the most important element of the trip: the food! I mentioned previously that København is home to the world's no. 1 restaurant Noma so naturally we had to eat our way through the city to find out what all the hype was about. Lucky for us, many places seemed to have ex-Noma chefs or simply just had some very talented teams. With the exception of a couple of places, Diane and I ate really well throughout our trip. Based on a combination of friends' recommendations, Visit Copenhagen, Time Out city guides and Guide-to-Copenhagen here's a snapshot of the great places we got to experience.