Be At One – Brighton.

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We decided to head into Be At One on a whim as we were about to stroll back to the hotel and I’m really glad we swung in for a cocktail or five. It was quite quiet when we walked in with the girl behind the bar ushering a shiny, brand-spanking-new cocktail menu in our hands. She was nice, hilarious and attentive as we sat down at the end of the bar and she offered her opinions on which cocktails we liked based on what we already drink. She was like one of those quizzes you got in magazines that pointed you in the right direction of which Backstreet Boy was for you. Except she pointed me in the direction of a glass of something much more delicious. Soz JT I’m forever a gin girl.

Me being like a magpie and attracted to the pretty shiny things in life (FYI their whole cocktail menu is absolutely glorious, filled with drinks that look *almost too pretty to drink* but definitely pretty enough to Instagram) chose to have a lurid blue cocktail called Blue Steel. So I whacked on my best Zoolander pout, stuck my pinky out as I sipped on this sweet, gin, white peach and prosecco based beaut. It went down like a dream I’ll tell ya. To the point it went down a little too well. I was quickly onto the next.

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When someone dangles a cocktail menu in front of your face it can be quite hard to not ask them for one of each. But when you remember you don’t want to look like an actual alcoholic on a Tuesday night and also aren’t made of money you only stick to the ones either you can pronounce or look the coolest. Which leads me onto me then asking for Bit of Me. After screaming loudly from the top of my lungs that I’VE GOT A TEXT I can tell you I definitely wasn’t bantering you when I say this was 100% my type on paper. Have I got enough Love Island quotes in here yet?? Either way this was sublime, another gin based cocktail for yours truly and it was really refreshing and fruity with the strawberry and rhubarb infused to it. That’s why I’d definitely want to pair up with this cocktail again. Ps did I mention I was in Blazin’ Squad?

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I definitely have a sweet tooth and a sweet palette when it comes to food and drinks. I much prefer clean spirits that are easily blended into cocktails and honestly, ones you can’t really taste in a cocktail too. My alltime favourite cocktails would probably be either an amaretto sour or a pornstar martini. Both sweet and zesty but not with that hard liquor after taste you can often find with whiskies and rums. The last one I ordered was called Candy Pants. It was a gentle blend of vodka and chambord mixed with strawberries and lemon juice over a large glass of ice. It was sweet but wasn’t overpoweringly so.

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The new cocktail menu we tried definitely whet my whistle to visiting my nearer bar in Bath. I really love and enjoy how many pubs and bars are upping their cocktail menus and cocktail game and this one in particular is one I’d definitely return to. Who can say no to a pretty pastel cocktail whilst enjoying the sun?! I know I could definitely think of worse ways to spend a day!

If you’re ever in the Brighton area and fancy a quick tipple I would definitely recommend this bar. Both the waitress and the bar manager were on hand all evening and they were an actual delight. AND they make great cocktails!? Although it did give me my first hangover in several months but that might have been more my fault than theirs???

Street Thai – Brighton.

When I’m in a new place I absolutely love trying the local restaurant scene or sampling the best rated places that I may not be able to get at home. I love trying new foods and well eating in general really so during my few days away in Brighton my friend and I wanted to be able to say we had some great fun, great memories and great food too. We spent our first evening wandering the streets, not in a lonely Oliver Twist type of way but in a neither of us could make up our silly minds where we wanted to eat we instead sat on the promenade googling nearby suggestions. We would pass somewhere that I liked the look of but Jimmy did not and vice versa until we both just got too hungry we agreed the next place we saw we would go into. Finding our bearings a bit we realized we were not too far from where Choccywoccydoodah was in one of the Lanes and there before us like a glowing light, to which we were two starving little moths, was Street Thai. Lit up like the empire state and will it’s kitchen aroma filling the streets we were in, almost like in a cartoon we followed the piquant smell, and the sign for the 3 course dinner for £12.99 special.

Street Thai specialises in staple Thai dinners and traditional Thai street foods and I was really keen to try something a little bit different or something traditionally Thai. As long as it wasn’t crickets on sticks, I draw the line there. Perusing the special three course offer we both opted for that as it was really good value and also need I mention again how starving we were?!?

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I ordered the spicy green papaya salad for a starter. Which was hot. Like a lot hotter than I anticipated. Over the years I’ve grown a lot better with spicy foods although I much prefer foods with plenty of flavours over a lot of heat, you will never catch me chomping down on a vindaloo is what I’m saying. Nevertheless this was enjoyable once I got myself over the initial heat of the dish. It was crunchy, flavourful and tangy. Plus I really like added nuts in any food really. From chocolate to curries and stir frys I like the added texture it adds to something and it didn’t disappoint. Within seconds of finishing our first course, our main meal came whizzing out. I ordered a red curry with pumpkin and mixed vegetables and a side of jasmine rice. It was warming, fragrant and just plain lush to be honest.

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However I was most looking forward to the final course, the best course in my opinion, the dessert course. Jimmy went with a green tea cheesecake and I opted for banana and coconut fritters. Which unfortunately I think they forgot about as it was getting late and they took off the bill. It was annoying but at least we didn’t have to pay for something we didn’t get. As this was my first experience of traditional thai foods outside of my local thai takeaway, Koh Thai Tapas and Giggling Squid restaurant chains. I really liked the food we had. If I were to go back I think I’d quite like to jump outside of my comfort zone a little bit more and try something a bit different.

Burgers & Cocktails – Brighton.

Funnily enough that is what I had. I had amaretto sours and a cauli burger. Lives up to it’s name very well indeed. Welcome to the final stop of the Brighton food tour huns we made it!!! We originally just popped in here for a drink or two as it looked nice, quiet and more importantly air conditioned. I had a fresh and lemony amaretto sour as we played board games in a near on empty Burgers & Cocktails restaurant.

I wasn’t actually aware beforehand that Burgers & Cocktails are actually owned by the same chain that are Giraffe. It’s stylish, quirky and preeeeeetty peachy and their menus totally match that as well. The menu has a good variety of things for meat eaters as well as accommodating to those that may be vegetarians or those whom have intolerances too. After copious amounts of cocktails and there’s only so much scrabble with your pal you can take we got a bit hungry and both decided to try the cauli wobble burger and share some skin on fries.  I also had a lotus biscuit milkshake, cos yknow calories don’t really count when you’re on holiday do they?!

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These rustic skin on fries were a dream. Salty, hot and sprinkled with herbs and spices. I’m 23 and am still yet to find a carb I don’t like.

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This was the cauli wobble burg and not going to lie I pictured it a little differently. It contains some deep fried chunks of cauliflower, halloumi, red peppers and greens all on a layer of sriracha mayonnaise. I for some reason thought it would be like two cauli steaks acting as the buns and the halloumi, peppers and greens sandwiched in between. It was quite difficult to eat as I kept losing cauli bits, I mean I’m not the most dignified at the best of times with messy foods. The sriracha mayo added that extra kick which I think the burg really needed as some find that cauli can be quite bland.

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This milkshake was insanely gorgeous. Lotus biscuits are so moreish and this was just fab. Top marks Burgers & Cocktails people.

The staff were attentive and lovely to us during our visit, even though they couldn’t help with my scrabble pieces; I HAD NO VOWELS.

The BEST Biscuit Barrel Recipes.

My name is Abbie and I am a self confessed biscuit addict. I LOOOOOVE them and in Britain we are blessed to have so many different types that I could easily put on an extra 3 stone just with a cup of tea and 47 packets of biscuits. Everyone has a different favourite from jammy ones, to chocolatey ones, to little ones with dried fruit your nan will always have in stock to the plain hobnobs that are pillars of the biscuit world. I could ramble on for hours about the little treats, SO much so I thought I’d save myself from growing another thigh and try my hand making some of my own. I found these biscuit cutters on Amazon here or you could get them direct through the Dexam website. I got these quite a while ago actually and may have forgotten about them a little bit until I rediscovered I had them lurking at the back of a cupboard. With these biscuit cutters you can make your very own homemade bourbon biscuits, custard creams, iced party rings and jammie dodger style treats. Perfect for being dead showy offy if you have pals over, if you want to impress at a tea party or if you just want to treat yourself, cos why ever not!?

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I was dead chuffed at how easy these all actually were to do and make. Not just making the biscuit dough but also the cookie cutters were so easy to use too. Something you could easily do with children I’d say as they could decorate, personalise and make their fav snack. I’ll share with you the recipe and ingredients beneath for each one so you if you want to replicate them this step-by-step guide will walk you through it.

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Starting off with these iced ring biscuits as seen above look just like Party Rings and don’t taste too dissimilar to them either! This one makes a ton of biscuits; easily about 25 or so. For this you will need:

  • 100g of butter cut into cubes.
  • 100g caster sugar.
  • 1 egg.
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract.
  • 200g plain flour.

Start by putting the butter, flour and sugar into a bowl and rubbing it together until it resembles breadcrumb or wet sand looking consistency. I did this with my hands even though I really dislike how it feels in my hands and how it gets under my nails. You could also use a blender or a food processor and pulse it until it’s at the consistency you need.

Once you’ve reached that stage, mix in the egg and the vanilla extract and mix together until it starts to bind and forms a dough. If it doesn’t bind as well add in a small spoonful of milk until it all comes together. Wrap in clingfilm and let it rest in the fridge for about half an hour. Once chilled, roll it out until it’s about 5-6mm thick evenly all over and cut out as many as possible or you want. Bake in an oven (preheated at 180 degrees) for about 10 minutes until they are golden in colour.

Remove from the oven and let cool fully before icing. I used a mix of icing sugar and water for the topping mixing it into a few separate bowls and adding a few different pastel to colours. To make them more your own style you could add different flavourings to the icing too.

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Custard Creams. 

Ok so possibly one of my favourite teatime treats. These little bitesized snacks taste all the more better knowing it took me a decent amount of effort to get to the finished thing too.

You will need:

  • 175g plain white flour.
  • 3 tbsp custard powder.
  • 1 tsp baking powder.
  • 3 tbsp white caster sugar.
  • 100g butter cut into cubes.
  • 1 egg.
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract.

Similar to the iced ring biscuits, start this by sifting the flour, baking powder and custard powder into a bowl. Add in the sugar and the cubes of butter and rub it all together with your hands until you’ve got that breadcrumby/sand consistency. Add the egg and vanilla extract and mix together until to starts to form as one. If it doesn’t and is still crumby add in a splash of milk until it forms a ball. Wrap in some cling film and rest in the fridge for about 20-30 minutes.

Once set up roll out to about 1cm thickness all over use your cutter to stamp out an even number of biscuits. They have to be sandwiched together after all! Place in the oven at 180 degrees and bake off for about 8-12 minutes until golden and cooked through. Let cool thoroughly and then sandwich together with some custard powder flavoured buttercream.

Make the butter cream by mixing 100g of butter with 200g icing sugar and 3 or 4 heaped tbsp of custard powder. Mix through and then sandwich the biscuits together.

Bourbon Biscuits.

These are actually so delish I’m both equally as impressed with myself as I am with these little slices of heaven. To make these ultra gorgeous little treats you will need:

  • 50g butter.
  • 50g soft light brown sugar.
  • 1 tbsp golden syrup (if you can’t get hold of that corn syrup is very similar)
  • 110g plain flour.
  • 20g cocoa powder.
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda.

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees and line a baking tray. Cream the butter and sugar together until light and then add in a spoonful of golden syrup. Sift in the dry ingredients until it forms a ball. Rest it in the fridge for about 30 minutes then roll out and cut out biscuits. Bake in the oven for about 8-12 minutes or the edges have browned. Allow to cool on a wire rack.

To make the cream between them simply mix 75g of icing sugar, 50g of butter with 25g of cocoa powder. Once this has formed, spread an even amount across one biscuit and then sandwich another one on top. Et voila!

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Jammie Dodgers.

These looked absolutely fab. I was well impressed with how these turned out. 10/10 would do again.

To make you will need to preheat your oven to 180 degrees and line a baking tray (or two depending on how much you’ve made)

  • 250g butter.
  • 140g icing sugar.
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract.
  • 1 egg yolk.
  • 375g plain flour.

Firstly, beat the sugar and butter together, careful not to choke in the icing sugar powder clouds, until creamed and fluffaaaaay. Mix in the vanilla and the egg yolk. Then sift in the flour and fold together until it forms a doughy ball. Set up in the fridge for 20-30 minutes and then when it’s fully chilled roll out into about 1cm thickness. Cut an even number of biscuits (cos sandwich biscuit after all) in every other one of the biscuits press the heart stamp through the centre ybake in the oven for about 10-12 minutes or until have that lush golden colour. Once cooled sandwich together with some jam, I used seedless raspberry jam mainly cos it’s red and it’s my favourite. And it’s the only one we had too.

I can’t even begin to brag about just how impressed I was with these. The stampers were super easy to use. some places said you needed to oil them, flour them or put them in the fridge to make them easier to stamp but I didn’t have ant problems with it whatsoever. I love how easy they were and they looked just like the real things. I think they’re perfect if you have allergens or intolerances so you could make your favourite teatime treat even if you’re dairy intolerant or gluten intolerant so you could use a speciality flour or a butter replacement.

You could even mix it up with the recipes and try different flavours. A couple years ago they did a Toffee dodger which I looooved so I might try doing that next with a salted caramel inside. Or you could use a different type of jam like plum or apricot. These really went down a treat with my family and my mum’s colleagues have already put in an order for some at her work. If you try these, I hope you enjoy making them as much as I did. I also drowned in washing up afterwards, what was I thinking making four different types of biscuits in one afternoon.

LOTS OF LOVE. X

Summery Courgette Salad.

Hello you! We are now entering into the month of May and that means Summer is just around the corner! In the summer months all I want to be doing is eating vibrant and fresh ingredients (ideally on a idyllic Greek island but you can’t win ’em all) I am lucky to have great parents who from a very young age instilled in me and my sister to have a big fat love of pretty much all fruits and vegetables. I could quite easily snack on cherry tomatoes or sugarsnap peas all day errrday.

I thought I’d share with you a very quick and very easy salad recipe; if you can even call it a salad or even call it a recipe for that matter this is so simply and easy.  This is refreshing, so easy and can transform any meal. Perfect as a side dish to a meal, incorporated into a gorgeous barbecue and looks great too if you fancy showing off a bit to friends and family. You could also add more greens like some washed kale and spinach, celery chopped into little pieces, cucumber and rocket to create a lovely and healthy green salad. Full of flavour and totally not boring! Who could say no to all these delicious greens?! To recreate this you will need:

  • 2 courgettes
  • Juice from half a lemon
  • Handful of mint leaves crushed and diced
  • A drizzle of olive oil
  • A pinch of salt.

This gave me a full bowl that I shared between my family of four on the side of a veggie lasagne I made. Of course chop and change the recipe and ingredients to suit you and your taste buds. Throwing a handful of flaked almonds or sesame seeds over the top would give the dish an extra texture and giving it a little source of protein too. Or you could even griddle the courgette ribbons lightly so it’s got those flecks of charred bits to it and that lovely smokey taste. If you don’t have a griddle pan (neither do I but I badly want one) In the summer you could lay them over a smoking barbecue and let them do their thang.

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You could use a mandolin if you have one to create the courgette ribbons however I just used a vegetable peeler.If you’re knife skills are a lot better than mine you could also use a knife and an incredibly steady hand! Placing on a large tray I dabbed them with some kitchen towel. Courgettes can be kinda wet and I didn’t want to make this a super sloppy side so that took some of the extra wetness away. I served mine totally raw and it was delicious. I’m a big fan of eating veggies raw as a snack and as salads or sides go this is a bit different. As mentioned above you could also grill these perhaps also serve with some grilled peppers, tomatoes and red onions and you’ve got a wonderful grilled vegetable Mediterranean side dish.

Seasoning it with a generous pinch of seasalt (totally did the salt bae action too, you can’t not can ya?!) I rolled and chopped the fresh mint leaves finely, squeezed over some lemon juice and a little drizzle of olive oil too. You could use some spoons to mix it all together and coat it all but I just chucked my hands in (washed i’ll have you know) and mixed it all round. Making sure every strand was coated. Because the courgette has a high water content I’d say it might be more preferable to make this closer to the time as you don’t want a soggy salad and serve as soon as you can.

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This went down a treat in my household and I’m really looking forward to creating more healthy, summer dishes. If the warm weather wants to stick around pls England or I’ll have no choice but to up sticks and move to France. OK.

Frome Independent Market.

bumble and wildHello again and HAPPY EASTER! I hope you all had a lovely day whatever you got up to and ate, drank and got merry with your loved ones celebrating all things Easter, Spring and chocolate. My family and I went to Frome Independent market today which is a town about 30 minutes away from where I live. Frome is a town in lovely Somerset which has a lovely mix of both highstreet retailers and a lot of cute independent shops. I’m a big fan of any town or high street that isn’t like no other and quite often in the UK you could walk down any high street or shopping town centre and be greeted with the exact same shops, the exact same closed down shops and end up in the same chain coffee shop drinking the same skinny vanilla latte. Eurgh. Not for me. Don’t get me wrong I do shop in these places and photograph the life out of my seasonal hot chocolates on the ‘Gram but I do like to support local and support smaller businesses more. See pic above of the very pretty florist’s shop Bramble and Wild. Their window display’s truly are wonderful. Continue reading “Frome Independent Market.”

Chocolate & Coffee Battenberg cake.

HEY HUNS it ya gurl abfab here hitting you up with an absolute belter of a cake recipe. I am posting this later than it was due to go up because I’m a little bit of an unprepared/unorganised fairy. Recently in the UK it was Mothering Sunday or Mother’s Day as it is more often named. For this special mummy day this year, me and my little big sis decided to treat our lovely Mumsy by making and baking some of her favourite delectable treats.  We made a little afternoon tea for her to put her feet up with a glass of prosecco and enjoy with. And I only went and baked a special cake for her too. I actually baked two cakes but I’ll just tell you about this one for now. Star baker and star daughter award goes to me I think????

Cake is my favourite and it is a family favourite in my household too. There’s nothing a bit of carbs don’t make better in my book. Having pretty much always made classic Victoria sponge cakes or something like a carrot cake I wanted to try something a little bit different for a change. Continue reading “Chocolate & Coffee Battenberg cake.”

Sea Salt & Dark Chocolate Torte.

I know, I know. Last time I posted on here I said I was going to be posting more regularly once on a Wednesday and once on a Sunday. Well me and scheduling/any form of organisation is like Donald Trump to rational thinking and not being a total div. Sorry team I really do wish I was one of those super organised, elegant gals that arrive at events 10 minutes early with immaculate hair and makeup and always know what’s what. But that’s not me. I’m trying me best at scheduling and drafts and what not so gimme some time for this to actually start. Thanks for being all so wondrous, so supportive and so damn fit. LY mean it. Anywho, I have a foodie post to whet your metaphorical and internetty appetite with today, so sit back (or however you want to sit idm) relax and have a read of this little gem. This was super easy and dead showy offy to make as well, so enjoy!

When I get sad I bake. When I bake I eat more. When I eat more I get fat. When I get fat I get sad. YA SEE HOW THIS CYCLE GOES ON. Everything in moderation is something I should live my life by more often but the sad truth is a slice of chocolate cake and a large vino tastes infinitely better than a wheatgrass shot and some bulgar wheat grains. I’ve been feeling a little bit rubbish, a bit low and not quite myself for a few weeks now, with me putting it down to hormones or just feeling a bit lost in life. I’ve made some changes in my personal life and am starting to put me first a lot more from now on, I’ll talk more about this in my lifey post which’ll put up in the next few days. So after a bit of a grotty week I decided to traipse into town and do some food shopping yesterday and to get a few ingredients. Cue all the adulty adults having a good old chuckle as I ATTEMPTED to food shop on a Saturday. At Midday. uGH. This is going to be much more of a chatty recipe post so I hope you’re not expecting a fine cuisine recipe for this one, I kinda just made it up as I went along and it happened to turn out pretty yum. It’s a torte not a tart as the dictionary definition is that a tart contains flour and a torte has more of a crumbly/no floury base. So not only are you making something delish it also sounds dead fancy!? So if you want to emulate me and this recipe you’ll need to put on your comfiest clothes, scrunch up your hair into an incredibly messy high bun and follow de rulez.

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So to make this little babe you will need:

  • A loose bottom tart/flan tin. (I used a 9.5 x 1.4’inch one).
  • 200g of shortbread biscuits.
  • 100g melted unsalted butter.
  • 400g dark chocolate.
  • 300ml double cream or whipping cream.
  • 100g caster sugar.
  • 50g unsalted butter.
  • Sea salt flakes.
  • 1tsp vanilla extract

It starts off with a cheesecake buttery biscuit base whereas normally digestive biscuits are used I fancied using some shortbread. I don’t know why I thought it would bind together a bit better and a sweeter over flavour to it. Which it did. After this I did think you could blend two different types of biscuits together to make it a bit different, maybe add some oats or maybe some chopped nuts to give it a crunchier more interesting texture. So smash up the biscuits to a fine crumb, picture that ex, that crap friend, that manager that made you work overtime on a Friday. Bash that pack of biscuits til it’s all the same fine sand consistency or ’til you’ve stopped being angry. Either way! Pour in the melted butter until the the biscuits have bound together and you can press it into the tart tin. Pressing it up the sides and across the base with about an inch thickness I left to chill for about 20 minutes. The torte that is. Not me.

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To make the ganache filling put the cream, sugar and vanilla extract into a pan and brought it to a slow, gentle boil. Whilst the cream is coming to a boil break the dark chocolate into small squares in a bowl and put the butter in with it too. Pour the boiling cream over the chocolate and leave to rest for about 30 seconds to a minute. Stirring the two together til the chocolate melts into the cream and thickens, forming that gorgeously glossy ganache. The added butter might seem a little bit odd but it give the ganache that lovely sheen to it. I sprinkled some sea salt over the top and then placed in the fridge for 2+hours. Once it’s set serve with a dollop of creme fraiche, some fresh berries or maybe some crushed hazelnuts. YUMMMMM.

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I don’t know how many kcals this contains and frankly I don’t care as it tasted blimmin’ well great. If you try this please do let me know what you think, I found it so easy I don’t even think I can call it baking?!

Lunch at The Ritz, London.

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Your birthday is the one day of the year for the good majority of people when you will be completely and utterly doted on and treated like an absolute QUEEN. So imagine my joy when I was lucky enough to be able to spend my birthday this year in London having a lavish three course lunch date with my family in the very beautiful and the very palatial The Ritz, London. I can only imagine I’d never been before and was so excited at just the sheer thought. The grandeur building standing as elegant and tall as ever, peering over the rest of Mayfair is an iconic London landmark. It opened in 1906 and was known as the ultimate stay for opulence and luxury. The whole experience was utterly divine and completely faultless. From the outside every doorway is adorned with one of their impeccably dressed doormen greeting you on arrival, holding the door or hailing a taxi to help you on your journey. I wish I took more pictures of decor inside but believe me when I say it is all absolutely stunning. With the smell of gorgeous fresh flowers, the sound of beautiful harp music and chatter filling the air, The Ritz has such a decadent feel and ambience to the whole place.

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Having placed our coats in their cloakroom we made our way to their dining room to be seated.  The waiters, just like every other employee couldn’t be faulted and waited on you hand and foot. The attention to detail was incredulous. My sister and Mum were given their usual menu whereas I had a seperate, vegetarian one. The menu wasn’t extensive offering three choices for all three courses with every single option sounding as luxurious and decadent as the next. The ever attentive waiting team came to our table and treated us like royalty, pouring glasses of water, wine, homemade breads, melba toast and a selection of canapes.  Savoury macarons filled with cream cheese and smoked salmon, chicken cigarellos and a gorgeous creamed goats cheese biscuit sandwich.

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As I said the attention to detail was absolutely stunning, the food was just as beautiful to look at as it was to taste. For my starter as seen above I opted for the artichoke royale. It was crowned with coils of carrots, truffle and pear nibs and then adorned with edible flower petals. The artichoke royale was so smooth and creamy accompanied with the tang of the pear it really went down a treat.

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For my main course I chose the cauliflower dish. With the menu they didn’t really give a lot away about what was what. The other options were a pasta dish and another one with wild mushrooms and as a self confessed mushroom hater that one didn’t appeal to me at all. Plus as I was dining in one of the finest restaurants in the country with a Michelin star I wanted to try something a little bit different. My main dish was a slice of cauliflower steak, with seperate cauliflower florets. Romanesco florets dotted around the plate like little trees, toasted hazelnuts and toasted yeast with a mini potato croquette and then finished off in a rich white sauce. Divine.

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For dessert, already feeling pleasantly sated I chose the blueberry souffle with a tart buttermilk sorbet. The souffle was light, fluffy and flavourful. It was so beautifully rich in colour; perfectly purple inside. The sharp, piquant flavours of the sorbet cut through the sweetness of the sorbet. It was blimmin’ well glorious. Can I eat you again please Mr Souffle?

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Finishing off the meal was some petit fours from top to bottom they consisted of, some creme anglaise filled macaroons with a slight coconut flavour. Orange and passionfruit jellies, a brown sugar biscuit topped with a citrus and mango cream finished with some gold leaf and finally a handmade chocolate filled with salted caramel. Careful I might get used to this extravagant lifestyle!

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As this very luxurious and special occasion was to celebrate mine and my Mum’s birthday we had a fancy Ritz birthday cake of a genoise sponge, filled with fresh cream and raspberries.

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Considering I can barely write in a straight line with a pen I was completely blown away how anyone can do this in chocolate. Perfect!

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I had such a tremendous time and feel well and truly spoilt rotten by it all. The whole experience simply cannot be faulted and was absolutely perfect from start to finish.

I made homemade body scrubs.

I probably spent FAR too much time and money on my skincare and beauty regimes. I’m thoroughly getting into the crafting mood thinking about what I can make or bake next and after an afternoon out shopping and spending a ridiculous amount at Lush I tried my hand at making my own body scrubs. For some reason I thought it would be really quite difficult but I honestly couldn’t be farther from the truth with that. I was so, so shocked at how easy it was and also how much money I’ll be saving from now on. If Lush go into administration you can entirely blame me for no longer buying their Rub, Rub, Rub salt scrub. All you need to create your own concoctions are:

  • A sugar or salt. You could you any kind depending on what you want so you could really personalise it to you or even someone you’re gifting it too. Fine, course, maybe even himalayan pink sea salt if you want to make it look nice and pretty. Brown sugar, caster sugar, demerara, once again it’s all completely down to you and your preference.
  • A base oil. Coconut,vitamin E oil, olive oil, jojoba, sweet almond oil, wheatgerm, avocado oil are all really good options. They are all really nourishing for the skin, available in most health food shops or online too and all have a neutral scent so wouldn’t overpower your scrub with a strong smell.
  • An essential oil or something similar to add some scents or even colour to your scrub. Things like herbs might make for an interesting addition, freshly chopped mint, lavender or even rose petals. Rose would look lovely with a pink himalayan salt. I used coffee grounds to make a lovely coffee scrub. It helps reduce the appearance of cellulite so I think I might start bulk making it and selling it off!

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I had these four mini mason jars I originally bought from Ikea with good intentions to do something creative with but they were unused and I filled them instead. You could use kilner jars you can buy pretty much anywhere, bargain shops do them for a relatively cheap price. Old jam jars that have been washed out would look really cool and kitsch.

I made four different flavours or scents if you will. As tasty as these smell, I’d probably recommend against eating them!

I made a coffee scrub. Filling half the jar with brown sugar and the remaining half of coffee grounds I then poured that into a bowl. I did it like that so I knew it would definitely all fit in rather than making waaaaay too much. I poured the coffee/sugar mix into a bowl and then added a tablespoon of coconut oil until I got the consistency I wanted.

I also made a gingerbread scrub. Inkeeping with the christmas theme on my blog at the moment this would also make the perfect gift at christmas for those also keen on clean beauty and skincare. I used the same principal as with the coffee scrub but I filled the little jar up full of brown sugar. Pouring it into bowl with some ginger essential oil, cinnamon essential oil and a dash of star anise. mixing that altogether I poured it back into the jar and screwed the lid on tight.

Switching it up a bit I thought for my next two I would use a course sea salt base instead. Sea salt can be a bit more vigorous so using that in a body scrub would help with shifting dead skin cells and also helping to shift toxins from the body. Rubbing it in, in a slow circular motion helps to get the blood flowing reducing the appearance of stretch marks and cellulite as well as removing the toxins from the body.

I used sea salt with some coconut oil, a few dashes of some spearmint essential oil and some finely diced mint leaves from the garden.

For my last and final scrub, I added some lavender essential oil to sea salt and coconut oil. I wanted a runnier consistency for this one as I love applying it to my hair. It helps with repairing the hair shaft and it leaves it feeling so silky, smooth. It sounds mad I know, but don’t knock it til you’ve tried it.

 

 If I knew just how easy it was to make these beforehand I would have been wailing it from the rooftops. Scrubs like this are usually fiendishly and wrapped with a nice bow and a tag would make a lovely present for a friend for Christmas. Or even yourself, I’m sure you deserve it a whole heap more!