Category: Family & Friends

  • 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 after each meal (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 […]

  • The Waterway review: Gorgeous view, disappointing food

    The Waterway review: Gorgeous view, disappointing food

    Many believe you can’t go wrong with gastro-pub grub. Others, including myself, think that it has a time and a place, ideally in actual gastro-pubs where the main courses cost a tenner, not in canal-side alfresco restaurants. Dining in the sun is in demand once again, and it just cries out for the flavours of […]

  • French Road Trip: Ardèche to Paris

    French Road Trip: Ardèche to Paris

    A month ago, Gaylord and I filled the car, lowered the flat’s squeaky shutters, and drove off on our holiday, leaving the Bonsai plant to fend for itself (it didn’t and Gaylord is now in mourning). The plan was to take a long drive to Paris, with stops along the way in Ardèche then again […]

  • No place like home

    No place like home

    Yesterday, my parents moved out of the house we as a family have lived in for twenty-seven years. It is white and has bumpy roughcast exterior walls, and when I was younger I would find a soft section and dig my finger in, dislodging the occasional pebble. I apologise to the new owners for the […]

  • The 7 things I learnt during lockdown

    The 7 things I learnt during lockdown

    Lockdown has been a trying time for us all. The world is officially closed for business and we’re all frozen in action. Some of us have it better than others, and I count myself lucky enough to be in that first category – I have a roof over my head, friends to chat to and […]

  • Mexico

    Mexico

    Much like when I walked out of my hotel on that first morning in Mexico City, I don’t really know where to start. That day, I took a confident right turn then did a 180 after two blocks, hurrying back past the hotel eyes averted as though this was what I intended to do. This […]

  • The Wedding Cake Diaries II

    The Wedding Cake Diaries II

    And with that, it’s all over. I suddenly understand how it must feel the day after your wedding. You’ve worn the dress, the speeches have been made, and most importantly, the cake has been cut. A year and a half of planning and nervous excitement culminated this weekend with over one hundred somewhat drunk, happy […]

  • The Wedding Cake Diaries

    The Wedding Cake Diaries

    Amidst all the cookies, trifles and fun frolics in the kitchen, every now and then you face a challenge that takes you outside your comfort zone and you turn on the oven with a flutter of trepidation. Dear reader, this week was one of those times. Last year my friend Joelle got engaged. Over an […]

  • A week of food and love

    A week of food and love

    It is mainly upon reflection when you realise how greedy you are. In the moment, you’re hungry and there’s not a lot you can do to resist, even if you only ate breakfast an hour before. When you eventually think back and you become aware how much time was dominated by food and consuming said […]

  • Lakeside

    Lakeside

    A week in the Lake District with my mum meant dedicated missions to find satisfactory tea and cake, mooching around bookshops, swanning across Windermere muffled against the brisk chill, and hunting down old Victorian buildings for my mum’s future Bed and Breakfast venture. It was the holiday to relax, forget about work, the to-do list […]