Category: Dinner Parties & Entertaining

  • Chicken soup with miso and rice

    Chicken soup with miso and rice

    If self-care had a physical form, it would be in the shape of chicken soup. You might be thinking that you self-cared yourself enough this Christmas – eating all that cheese would be anyone’s ideal form of self-care (besides anyone with lactose intolerance that is), all smug and warm like dipping into a bath of […]

  • The Ultimate Pigs in Blankets

    The Ultimate Pigs in Blankets

    France is big on the potted meats, as you are probably aware, and never more so than at Christmas. This time a year ago, I was complaining about the sheer amount of meat I’d been guzzling. I can’t say the same for this year though, and that is because I’ve been trying out an anti-inflammatory […]

  • Christmas prawn cocktail

    Christmas prawn cocktail

    I try to remain cliché-free when it comes to my blog posts and recipes – ideally, I’d like turn up each week with something unexpected, much like that batty aunt who appears in a kaftan and a new boyfriend every other visit. However, at certain times of year predictability is inevitable. The most predictable of […]

  • Toffee Apple Pie

    Toffee Apple Pie

    The beginning of November is marked by a sudden chill in the air, cold hands and feet for people with poor circulation (including yours truly), conkers and shiny toffee apples. Or at least, the toffee apples make an appearance in the UK, the same can’t be said for here in France. So, to recreate that […]

  • Classic lasagne with three cheeses

    Classic lasagne with three cheeses

    Before you immediately click off this recipe because of course you know how to make lasagne, or you may be apologetically shrugging as if to say ‘so sorry Ally but my mum’s recipe for lasagne is unbeatable’, I’m just going to quickly say – you haven’t tried this lasagne. And I’m also going to place […]

  • How to make the best charcuterie board

    How to make the best charcuterie board

    It was during my first visit to see Gaylord in France that I realised how seriously the French take charcuterie. While it took me another year to eat snails, then a whole year after that I finally encountered frogs legs, charcuterie has been a weekly snack since my plane touched down in 2020. As you […]

  • Moist carrot cake with maple cream cheese frosting

    Moist carrot cake with maple cream cheese frosting

    Unlike many bakers, I didn’t grow up baking at my grandmother’s knee. In fact, my most regular activity in my granny’s kitchen was drying the dishes (can you even qualify that as a skill? – ‘oh her baking is delicious’ ‘you haven’t seen anything, just watch her dry up’). My granny was of the generation […]

  • Cheat’s prawn ceviche with avocado

    Cheat’s prawn ceviche with avocado

    Our evening binge-TV is Modern Family. There are 11 seasons so it looks like we’re covered until next summer (who am I kidding, we’ll be finished within a month). In an episode we watched the other night, a character lamented, ‘Do you remember when summer meant fireflies, cut-off shorts and ice cream trucks?’ Do I […]

  • Burrata salad with courgette, basil and pistachios

    Burrata salad with courgette, basil and pistachios

    At the beginning of the summer, the thought that one day I might be sick of salads was a laughable concept. Fresh, cold and crunchy, salads was everything the weather was not as here in the south of France, the temperature has been balancing on the cusp of 40C for more days than I care […]

  • Spaghetti vongole

    Spaghetti vongole

    Many great spaghetti dishes come together in under 15 minutes. Aside from a slow-cooked ragu or a Bolognese, a spaghetti dinner gives you little time to prepare yourself, whether that’s finishing an email, video game or conversation before it’s on the table, steaming its way into a gluey tangle. Carbonara, spaghetti aglio e olio (the […]