Christmas revisited

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Hands up who's put on 5 stone and Christmas week has only just began? *raises hand* 

I wrote this post on Christmas last year which I rediscovered the other day and I just had to revisit it with some new favourites.

Sitting comfortably with a cuppa and a fat slice of Christmas cake?...I AM.

These are some of my favourite things about the festive season:

Feeling like Rowan Atkinson in  Love Actually  when wrapping presents - This is my time to shine.

Charades!!..unless you get Free Willy, then that's just awkward.

Looking into the ends of all the Christmas crackers and making sure the best one is by your plate.

Getting to wear a crown at the dinner table.

The Ultimate cheat day - 24 hours where you can eat anything and everything, because calories don't count.

Getting to eat chocolate before breakfast everyday. Hello advent, I like you.

Festive flavored coffees. Even if I have had a tub of Quality Street already this morning, I can't resist a gingerbread is Christmas after all. 

Stag Coffee
Secret Santa - The real test to see if you actually listen to your friends/fellow colleagues.

When its perfectly normal to hang a big sock on your door, that is filled with satsumas and an eyebrow pencil on Christmas morning.

Christmas shopping - The best competitive sport around.

Hot wine... serve this to me in June and that is one very bad trip adviser review, but in December why the devil not? 

Patiently waiting for the pyjama fairy to come with the goods on Christmas eve.

Christmas Jumper Day - The only day of the year where you can wear the ugliest thing in your wardrobe and people think it's GREAT.

Drinking and eating non stop for 3 days straight.

Regretting drinking and eating for 3 days straight when your jeans no longer fit.

Turkey sandwiches, turkey dinner, turkey curry, turkey soup - No wonder we only have this bird once a year.

A month long hangover. Festive season = Hair of the dog x 31.

Gingerbread EVERYTHING. Even for breakfast? The answer will always be a yes.

 The Collective Gingerbread Yogurt
The Collective Gingerbread Yogurt
Putting a scarf on your cat because you don't want them to miss out on the festivities... 

So I must get my elasticated jeans at the ready and prepare for some over eating, under sleeping and many renditions of the entire Michael Buble Christmas album.

I totally get where Buddy the Elf was coming from here, I am also this excited.

Have a lovely Christmas!


Chai Tea Latte Oats

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Tis' the season of cinnamon on everything and chocolate for breakfast. 

December you're my favourite. 

As you know I love a chai latte, so I gave this little oaty recipe a chai twist. I raided my cupboards of all my supply's which turned out to be the best idea I've had all year. 

Taking inspiration from one of my favourite drinks, say hello to my Chai Tea Latte Oats.

You will need:
  • 1 vanilla chai teabag (brewed)
  • Rolled oats
  • Alpro oat milk
  • Cinnamon 
  • Honey
  • Raw chocolate

As it is the festive season I didn't want to deprive you of chocolate before breakfast, so I just had to throw some in the mix.

How to: 
  • Pour hot water over your teabag until it covers it and leave to brew for about 10 mins.
  • Start to cook your oats in your oat milk on a low heat.
  • Take the teabag out and pour the delicious chai into your the pan and give it a stir. 
  • Once cooked - I usually cook mine for about 10 mins, pour into your bowl and add a great big drizzle of honey. 
  • Sprinkle with cinnamon and top with raw chocolate and give it a stir so it melts into the oats.

It's like a great big oaty, chai latte and one of my staple Christmas breakfasts. All that's left to do is add some fluffy socks, put on a Christmas film and tuck in.

Happy feasting


Getting Festive at Locke & Remedy

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I got asked if I would like to sample Locke & Remedy's Christmas menu. There were also cocktails thrown into the festive equation - I'm in.

I started the evening with a cocktail that I think was named after myself - The Welsh Princess. I was wearing my festive princess shoes so it was a must.

Previous to the event I had been feeling a little under the weather, so the bar tender kindly whipped up an Old Wives Tale which consisted of gin, Limoncello, fresh lemon juice, honey & cloudy lemonade - Basically like the most delicious medicine ever. A few of us even got to shake some up for ourselves! 

Now on to the seriously tasty stuff. First of all if you haven't been to Locke & Remedy and tried their sourdough pizzas, I demand you to right away. This special kind was topped with pork & sage stuffing & maple bacon. *insert heart eye emoji*

The burger was packed full of festive goodness - Spiced buttermilk fried turkey, with a bacon wrapped sage patty and cranberry mayo. My jeans felt rather tight afterwards but I don't regret a single calorie. 

I'm contemplating swapping the traditional roast for pizza & burgers this year, because that totally won me over and had me feeling very festive and completely stuffed - How every meal at Christmas should.

Locke & Remedy's festive menu is now available but won't be sticking around for long. Grab your Santa hat and make your merry way to L & R for the best Christmas grub around. 

Thank you Su, Locke & Remedy & fellow food bloggers for a fabulous evening.


Don't Tell Anyone

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Last weekend I returned to one of my favourite places in Cardiff - The Depot, where I welcomed back Thai food and red wine with open arms. Brother Thai know how to make a mean vegetable curry.

 Guys, I love what you've done with the place. *insert jingling bells*

BUT first we took a little detour...

You've probably noticed that these last few years Cardiff has been going from strength to strength when it comes to the food and drink scene, from street food to big city restaurant chains, it's getting cooler by the day.

I'm about to let you in on a little secret, but Don't Tell Anyone.

There's a new bar in town that you have got to try, but first you've got to find it and the only clue I can give you is...Follow the white rabbit.

Think red wine in big goblets, secret cocktails, no phones and the best night ever.

You will have to direct message DTA on twitter where you will receive a top secret password to gain entry. Sound fun? Make finding this little gem your mission this weekend, you won't regret it. 


Coconutty Treats

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Let me tell you about a little secret of mine. It's called The Groovy Food Company.

Unless you've been hiding under a rock, you will know that coconut oil is having its time.

I see it as a miracle worker, if you google the health benefits of using coconut oil, I guarantee you will be skipping to the shop to go pick some up for yourself. It is my number one when it comes to cooking.

So instead of throwing facts at you, I will show you one seriously amazing, coconutty recipe.

 Say hello to my coconutty treats.(like a bounty but a gazillion times better)

I spotted this in my Hemsley & Hemsley book and knew it would be love, and with a batch of Groovy goodies it seemed like the perfect excuse. I tailored it a little to the ingredients I had.
  You will need:
  • 200g bar of creamed coconut
  • 6 tbsp of coconut oil
  • 3tbsp agave syrup
  • 1tbsp vanilla extract
  • Pinch of seasalt
  • 150g desiccated coconut
  • 4 tbsp of water
  • 200g of 85% cocoa dark chocolate 

How to:
  • Add your creamed coconut, coconut oil, agave, vanilla, salt & water to the bowl and give it a stir. If your creamed coconut bar is solid, put it in warm water until it turns into a liquid.

  • Stir in the desiccated coconut.
  • When the consistancy is thick and doughy, pour the mixture into your baking tray (lined with baking paper) and pat down with a spoon - leave it to cool in the fridge for half and hour.
  • Remove from the tray - it should be quite hard and not falling apart. Cut it into chucks and place on the baking tray. If you find they are falling apart put them back in the fridge for a little longer. 

  • Pop them in the freezer for at least 40 minutes.
  • When they have had a nice chill, melt your chocolate, then leave it to cool a little to it gets thicker. 
  • Remove bars from the freezer and dip them in the chocolate - using 2 forks is the easiest way. Once sufficiently dipped, place them back onto the cold baking tray and pop in the fridge to set.

  • Then all thats left to do is lick all the remaining chocolate off the bowl - It can get messy but it's worth it...
And there you have it. The most scrummy, coconutty treats, that are only a teeny bit naughty. 

Make yourself a tea and tuck in. 

So if I can give you any advice, it is to go go go buy yourself a jar of coconut oil.


Olive It! Masterclass with Omar Allibhoy

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I had the GREAT pleasure of cooking with Omar Allibhoy and some of Cardiff's finest food bloggers this week. Omar is the king of tapas and founder of  the Tapas Revolution restaurants in London & Birmingham. Passionate about all things Spanish, he also has a best selling cookbook under his belt.

In the invite to the masterclass, I read the words olives & wine and was instantly sold - There is no better combination.

Olive It! is a European organisation that wants to promote and inspire people to enjoy and produce more olive recipes. I love the little buggers and they are my staple buffet item along with kettle chips and houmous. 

Apart from inhaling a pot in minutes before a meal, I rarely cooked with them...until now.

The masterclass, which was held at Giovanni's Cookery School on Mill Lane, showed us how to make 3 different dishes using olives. Marinades, meatballs and dessert.

OLIVES IN DESSERT? yes you heard it right, and it was AMAZING. Although I was extremely lucky to be paired up with Kitchen Clonc, who is a cooking genius. I gave myself the title of chief wine pourer, I'm good at this.

We started with the dessert as we had to leave it to set. It was made with double cream, goats cheese, black olives, sugar, cherries and sherry wine.

Then we went on to making the marinades.

Green olives marinated in oregano and chillies & black olives marinated in ginger, cinnamon and cardamon - The festive kind.

We added lots of olive oil to these which made it perfect for dipping big chunks of bread into - Best snack EVER.

For the main, we cooked olive stuffed meatballs in a tomato and olive sauce - A dish I feel would impress any man. I've never cooked meatballs before and was surprised at how quick and easy it was to whip up such a tasty meal.

Master Meatballer
After we had cooked up our dishes and drank too much wine, we took to the table to tuck in.
The dessert was my favourite of them all. I have a real sweet tooth and found the sweet and salty mix of the cherry's and olives mixed with the creamy base an absolute dream.

Olives will no longer just be a side dish for me, I have some very tasty ideas for breakfast time...

Thank you Storm & Omar for a truly amazing evening. My head wasn't feeling too amazing the next day, but red wine is good for us, right? 


A Weekend in Nuremburg

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One of my besties has lived in Germany for 2 years and I have been meaning to visit for ages.

Beer, Bratwurst, Bread & Babes...where do I sign up?

We got some super cheap flights with Ryan Air and off we went with cat ears in tow. (It was Halloween weekend...)

I was lucky to have a very knowledgeable tour guide who was able to show me some German gems.

Here are some things that you should definitely do if you ever find yourself in Nuremburg.

Visit Nuremburg Castle
This enchanting stretch of architecture looks over Nuremburg and houses gorgeous buildings and views over the city. There's a big hill to tackle on the way up so wear suitable shoes...


If I told you they had an entire shop dedicated to just Muesli, that's a good enough reason to go right? As you can imagine I found this FANTASTIC. As well as high street stores - Cos, Zara, Urban Outfitters, H&M, they have a great big handful of lovely German stores. Ladies & gents, be sure to visit Cramer & Co.

Drink lots of coffee
If you're a coffee nut, Germany is the place for you. I am one of those 'don't talk to me unless I've had my coffee' kinda girls, so I was in my element. Go to Bergbrand if you're after a good brew. With an industrial feel and insanely good coffee, you can sit in the window and watch the world go by - Highly Recommended! Weißgerbergasse 38, D-90403 Nürnberg.

Also Di Simo. This place is situated on the river and serves you coffee on little trays, which you can accompany with a glass of something special to take out to the bridge overlooking the river. Sounds perfect huh? The coffee is spectacular too. Trödelmarkt 5-7, 90403 Nürnberg.

Go for breakfast at Main Heim
Main Heim was my favourite place in Nurmburg. We were lucky enough to have very good weather, so sat outside in scarves and sunnies with good coffee and breakfast. TIP: The Chai Latte's looked AMAZING here, so make sure you order one. This is also where I came across my new favourite word - Brotzeit. It means bread time, which is the best time. I went with scambled eggs with feta and tomatoes with thick warm bread. Bauerngasse 18, 90443 Nürnberg.

Try as much German food and drink as possible
I can not recommend a pretzel enough, they sell them in little stalls dotted all around and it is the most delicious carby treat in the world. 


Lebkuchen, this is like doughy gingerbread. I had a cappuccino one and brought some mini chocolate ones back with me - The perfect sweet treat with a coffee (or beer...)

Gluhwein, this is basically mulled wine. Warm, delicious and like Christmas in a cup.

SAUSAGE, the Nuremburg way is 3 mini sausages in a bun. Simple but scrumptious. 

Beer, obviously.

Visit Etage
Why eat Thai food when in Germany? Because Etage serves the best Thai food EVER. After my visit to Thai Land this year, it doesn't take much to convince me when it comes to this cuisine. I went for a lemongrass chicken dish. It is situated up a tiny cobbled street in an old mill. Großweidenmühlstraße 9, 90419 Nürnberg.

There are lots of picturesque streets, rivers and green spaces in Nuremburg, so it's very lovely to just take time to walk around. I also think autumn is a perfect time to visit. 

The whole feel of Nuremburg itself is completely relaxed, full of culture and pretty cool. If you are unsure of what to wear, it's a very casual place and you will blend in perfectly if you are sporting a functional pair of trainers and sleek top knot. 

I fell a little in love with Germany and can't wait to visit again. April, thank you for being the best host ever and Sophie, thank you providing us with spectacular dance moves.

Nuremburg, you shall me seeing me again soon.

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