We're nuts about nuts, so we couldn't wait to try the new range of craft-baked nuts and snacks from Real Handful. Perfect for munching on the go, these seriously moreish snacks are super tasty and healthy, too!
The range includes traditional Sea-Salted Peanuts, Salt and Vinegar Peanuts (a nice twist on a classic), Smoky BBQ Almonds, Smoky BBQ Peanuts, Sweet & Salty Trail Mix, Smokin' BBQ Trail Mix and Salt & Vinegar Verve Trail Mix.
We adored the Sweet & Salty Trail Mix, which had lots of crunchy corn in it, which gives it a unique flavour profile, and we loved the extra crunchiness! The Salt & Vinegar Peanuts were also fab and had a bit of zinginess, which really elevated the flavour!
Banish boring nuts and snacks for good and give these a go! To view the wide range of premium nuts and snacks from Real Handful, visit realhandful.com.
I've always been a huge fan of Mexican food, so when I discovered that I could buy authentic Mexican ingredients in the heart of London, I was sold.
MexGrocer.co.uk is a specialist retailer which has a wealth of authentic Mexican groceries and ingredients ideal for traditional Mexican cooking. Most of their foods are imported directly from Mexico and are free from animal products, making their ingredients vegan and vegetarian friendly. They also have a great range of gluten free products.
MexGrocer.co.uk recently sent us a bumper package of goodies to sample, which was one of the most exciting things I've had delivered over the past few months! Here are some of the scrumptious items we had, all of which were fab...
Komali Tradicionale Tortillas
Tortillas are exceptionally popular and highly versatile, and are used for making a wide variety of Mexican dishes including tacos, quesadillas and tostadas. These tasty corn tortillas are the perfect pantry staple to have on hand for whenever you feel like whipping up some tasty Mexican dishes.
Herdez Salsa Verde with Avocado
This guacamole salsa made with green tomatoes, avocado, chilis and coriander is my new favourite condiment. It packs some serious heat and is divine drizzled over tacos, burritos and anything else you desire! Seriously, I'm going to start buying crates of this stuff.
San Marcos Pinto Refried Beans
Refried Beans are a fantastic accompaniment for a variety of Mexican dishes. I love to slather them on a tortilla and serve with scrambled eggs and fajita vegetables to make a scrumptious breakfast burrito.
San Marcos Refried Black Beans
Black beans are one of my favourite foods, so I was really looking forward to trying these black refried beans. Packed with protein, these beans are great to spread and on tacos or burritos.
I decided to use the black refried beans and salsa verde with avocado to make tacos, and it was probably one of the tastiest tacos I've made!
Ocho Reales Ale – Pack of 4 for £12
I'm a huge fan of craft ales, so I was excited to try these, which were the first Mexican craft ale to be exported from Mexico to the UK. These are full of flavour and go perfectly with your favourite Mexican dishes.
Velvet Soda sparkling waters
I love sparkling water and the range of fine sparkling waters from Velvet Soda is delicious. Flavour options include: Lychee, Maracuya (passion fruit), Damasco (peach) and Pomelo (grapefruit). My favourites were the lychee and the passion fruit but they are all refreshing and would be great on a hot summer's day.
San Marcos Chipotle Barbeque Sauce
I was expecting this to pack a spicy punch, but it is more on the sweet side, so would be perfect slathered over chicken or pork.
Given that we are huge fans of guacamole, we thought we'd also share with you some tips on how to how to make the perfect guacamole from a Mexican expert, Katya Torres de la Rocha, founder of MexGrocer.co.uk
Guacamole is an essential dip for any good BBQ. The creaminess, tempered with the acidity of the lime, cuts through and complements the spice and char of the meat. It’s perfect with tortilla chips, is a great vegan alternative to mayo and is packed full of vitamins. What’s not to love?
Guacamole recipe (serves 4 people)
Mix all the ingredients in a bowl (except the salt) using a potato masher or fork until you get a creamy consistency. Season generously with flaked salt such as Maldon.
For more delicious Mexican food staples, visit https://www.mexgrocer.co.uk.
Toast is one of our favourite 'go to' breakfast options, so we tend to go through quite a bit of jam in our household. So, when I heard about Fearne & Rosie, a new range of delicious jams, spreads and sauces that uses 40% less sugar than standard jams, I knew I had to give them a try!
Oftentimes, many reduced-sugar jams can be flavourless or have a slightly artificial aftertaste, but these were packed with flavour and goodness. The raspberry jam was gorgeous and the honey and chocolate spread is a nice alternative to Nutella.
The jams are also great for jazzing up plain yoghurt and can be used in a variety of recipes. We tried the Fearne & Rosie Banana Bites, which my toddlers loved!
Fearne & Rosie Banana Bites
Let cool and enjoy!
These would make a fab snack to take to the park or school, and as they are so simple to make, it's a new favourite recipe of ours.
Evan, aged three, loved helping with the mixing and making the porridge balls - a great way to beat boredom during lockdown!
Et voila - the finished product. Not too shabby for our first effort!
Fearne & Rosie products are available from www.fearneandrosie.co.uk.
Takeaway feels indulgent enough, but takeaway DESSERT is on a whole other level.
I’ve seen Creams Cafes around London before and I've always said to myself that I must pop in at some point, but for some reason or another I’d never get round to it. So, when I discovered that you can now order their delicious desserts from a variety of delivery sites (Just Eat, Deliveroo and Uber Eats), I couldn’t resist.
This popular dessert franchise with a plethora of locations across the UK, is the perfect place to go when you want something to indulge your sweet tooth, but you’re not sure what you’d like. With a wide variety of options to satisfy your sugar cravings, from waffles and crepes to sundaes, donuts and freak shakes, there is something for all of your decadent dessert desires.
For the donut lover, they also have seriously scrumptious donut boxes (£8.95 for 4 x donuts), but sadly, at the time of our order they were sold out, so we’ll have to try them another time as they look ridiculously tasty!
Although it was difficult to make a decision when there were so many tasty delights on offer, I adore waffles, so I decided to try two different options – The Chocolate Fudge Mess (£9.95), a seriously rich waffle with hot chocolate fudge cake crumbles, toffee fudge pieces, toffee sauce and icing sugar; and the Fashion Hot Berry (my favourite) (£8.95), a light and fluffy waffle topped with hot berry compote, with vanilla gelato, strawberry sauce, icing sugar and a Creams wafer.
The waffles are HUGE, so to be honest, I found that one waffle is ideal for two people to share, but you might not want to! I loved that each waffle had a signature Creams wafer and a star design imprinted into the waffle, which was a nice touch.
Tasty dessert delivered to your door – what more can one ask for in life?!
Creams Cafe Brixton
392 Brixton Rd
KIND snacks are a range of nutritious and delicious snack bars that are the perfect pick me up to keep hunger at bay. Packed with real ingredients such as honey, almonds, cashews, and peanuts, they are are the ideal balance of crunchiness and chewiness.
With a wide range of scrumptious flavours to choose from, so you'll never struggle with lack of choice! While all of the options were very moreish and tasty, our favourites were the Caramel, Almond & Sea Salt bar, the Peanut Butter Crunch bar and the Blueberry Almond breakfast bar.
Best of all, as I know that they aren't full of any nasty ingredients, I can happily give them to my children, knowing that they are a healthier option than artificial, sugar-laden snacks.
I will certainly be keeping a stash of these in my handbag or when we can travel once again, my carry on luggage, for whenever I'm feeling peckish on the go!
KIND snacks are available from https://www.kindsnacks.co.uk/.
Celebrate World Eat For Good Day by making simple food swaps that are better for your health and the environment
It's World Eat For Good Day! What's that you ask? It's an inaugural day launched by flavour experts Knorr, who want to inspire everyone to change the world by changing what’s on their plates.
Starting today, Knorr is asking everyone around the world to swap at least one ingredient in their routine meals for a Future 50 Food. Future 50 Foods are a list of 50 foods developed by Knorr and WWF, that we should all eat more of because they are naturally nutritious, have a lower impact on our planet than animal-based foods, and can help safeguard the future of our food.
By using a wider variety of ingredients, we not only diversify our dishes and beat mealtime boredom, but we increase the nutritional value of our meals while lowering the environmental impact. Win win!
The top Future 50 foods swaps we should all embrace to liven up our plates and our palates include:
Swap rice for quinoa to get three times more fibre, plus a source of magnesium and folate, while decreasing greenhouse gas emissions by approximately 50% and reducing water use by up to 90% compared to white rice (when grown). We recommend trying this delicious Veggie Parmesan Quinotto.
Swap beef for lentils to get 10 times more fibre and no saturated fat, while emitting approximately 80% less greenhouse gases than ground beef. If you prepare this meal once a month for one year (using lentils instead beef), you save approximately 25kg of greenhouse gases! Try them in this tasty recipe for Spicy Red Lentil Balls.
Swap potatoes for a scrumptious Cilembu sweet potato to get three times more vitamin C and calcium than other potato varieties. Cilembu sweet potatoes have a sweet, honey-like flavour and are native to Indonesia. Eating more varieties of similar foods helps make the food system more resilient while providing more nutrients. We love this warming stew recipe: Spiced Mung Bean, Cilembu Sweet Potato and Kale Stew
Knorr wants World Eat For Good Day to awaken the inner 'Eativist' in all of us - people who believe food can be a force for change and consciously choose food that is good for themselves and the planet.
We hope we've inspired you to start making some delicious food swaps! For more scrumptious recipes, visit knorreatforgood.com. Here you'll find a wealth of tips and delicious recipes to inspire you #eatforgood on World Eat For Good Day and beyond.
To help inspire others to make simple changes that are better for the environment, share your Future 50 Foods swaps on your social channels tagging #knorr #eatforgood.
Burns Night goes hand in hand with Scotch Whisky, however, for those who are looking for a delicious non-alcoholic drink to toast the occasion, Mother Root Ginger Switchel is the perfect alternative. 100% all-natural, this non-alcoholic aperitif is made with four key ingredients - a maceration of pressed ginger juice, blossom honey, organic apple cider vinegar and a hint of chilli, making it ideal for those who love revitalising drinks with a warming kick.
Inspired by the age-old Anglo-American “shrub-making” tradition, the switchel is a fascinating beverage originating from the 1700s, which witnessed increased popularity during the Prohibition era. Mother Root’s Ginger Switchel is a revival of these interesting flavours, that’s been given a captivating modern twist.
For some drinks inspiration this Burns Night, Mother Root has recommended a selection of innovative recipes. Enjoy!
MOTHER ROOT SCOTCH BRIDGET
50ml Mother Root
150ml Apple Juice
1 cinnamon stick
1 star anise
1 teaspoon honey
1 lemon zest
Add all ingredients to a pan and warm (be careful not to let it boil). Strain into a mug and use the cinnamon stick and lemon zest as a garnish.
Make it boozy:
Change to 30ml Mother Root and add 50ml Scotch Whiskey
Just like one's health, sleep is one of those things that you don't appreciate until it's gone. Having had two children only 18 months apart three years ago, sleep is sadly one of the things I miss most. Long weekends snuggling under a duvet until 10am are long gone; these days I'm lucky if I get to sleep in until 8am on a weekend!
So, feeling exhausted and looking haggard, I'm always on the look out for things to help me get to sleep that little bit easier. When Pukka Tea recently contacted me to see if I'd be interested in participating in their 'Sleep With Ease' campaign, I jumped at the opportunity. My challenge was to keep a sleep diary and drink their slumber-inducing teas to help encourage an easier night's sleep. Here's my journey...
First off, the tea. I loved the beautiful floral artwork on the boxes. I artfully stacked them on my kitchen table and found I enjoyed just looking at the tea. But of course, I actually had to drink the tea to reap any benefits!
Pukka's Top Tips to Sleep With Ease
The tips were easy enough to follow.
Day one - Creating a clutter free environment was my first task. With two young children running around, I'm often guilty of leaving stacks of clean laundry in piles on my window seat, so I made an effort all week to keep the surfaces tidy and it definitely had a more calming effect.
Day two - Removing technology from my sleep space was more difficult as I've become accustomed to watching Tik Tok videos or catching up on Facebook before bed, but I obliged nonetheless.
Day three - Setting a sleep time. This one is relatively easy as we have a pretty early bedtime anyways given we're so exhausted from taking care of the kids all day!
Day four - Practice a sleep routine you love. I've now started enjoying a nice hot shower and a cup of tea before bed, both of which make me feel refreshed and ready for bed.
Day five - Cut down on caffeine. I've yet to rid myself of my 2pm coffee habit, but Rome wasn't built in a day, so I haven't given up hope yet!
Day six - Unwind with sleepy ingredients. I've been loving all of the different Pukka Teas. From their Relax Tea (chamomile, fennel and marshmallow root; to their Night Time Tea (oatflower, lavendar and limeflower), it's a nice way to ease into the evening (preferably with a good book).
Day seven - Introduce light and movement to your day. We try to take the kids out each day for a nice walk, which is great for getting in some fresh air (well as fresh as it can be for London) and it gives us a bit of light exercise. Win win.
The verdict: I'd definitely recommend Pukka's teas for anyone looking for delicious teas that help you feel relaxed and get you in the mood for sleep. For more information on how you can sleep with ease, visit:
Click here to learn more about Pukka Teas
I love avocado on toast as much as the next lady, but let's be honest, it gets a bit dull after having eating it at nearly every brunch outing over the past five years.
So, when the fabulous bakers at Bertinet Bakery shared their five favourite recipes that are certain to inject a bit of pizazz and creativity into recommendations for sourdough toppings that go beyond the usual offerings, I was all for it.
Bertinet Bakery is a local bakery in Bath renowned for using traditional methods and only few simple ingredients to create delicious bread. They don’t use anything artificial to synthetically boost shelf life or softness. Instead, they invest the time and discipline needed to create real, honest loaves that look, smell and taste amazing.
Here are Bertinet Bakery’s five ways to jazz up your sourdough toast (beyond smashed avocado):
GARLIC, COTTAGE CHEESE AND HARISSA SOURDOUGH TOAST
2 heaped tbls low fat cottage cheese
1 small grated clove garlic
Squeeze lemon juice
1 tsp Harissa paste
Sprinkle of chilli flakes
Fresh basil leaves
Sea Salt & cracked black pepper
Drizzle of herb olive oil or plain
Mix the cottage cheese with the garlic, lemon juice, salt & pepper. Spread on seeded sourdough toast and top with the harissa, chilli flakes, basil & oil.
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