Monday, December 29

Cheers to 2015!

Wow.

How on earth can it be the New Year already!? It feels as if it was only yesterday that I was sunbathing in Cannes in August, or packing up all of my bits to start uni again in September...

I've got a rather special post planned for New Years Day, so I thought I'd do a nice summery of the year and resolutions a bit ahead of the game.
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Wednesday, December 24

Christmas Genoa Cake

Merry Christmas everyone!

It's Christmas Eve and I thought I'd share with you a little recipe as the big day is finally on the horizon.

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Sunday, December 14

Festive Beginnings

Guess whose back in the countryside for Christmas?!

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Friday, December 12

The Greasy Pig, Leeds

Last night was my hockey society's Christmas meal. In true uni fashion, the champagne corks were popping left, right, and centre and some serious moves were being thrown.

It was a cracker of a night.


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Monday, December 8

Ski & Snow Style


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Friday, December 5

Christmas Muffins

Guess whose been baking again?!

And yes dear readers... This isn't just normal baking, this is Christmas baking, one of the best kinds of baking.

Hoo- Bloody- Rah.


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Sunday, November 30

Harrogate Christmas Market

It's been a pretty chaotic week, one full of 'fun' uni stuff and dissertation proposals... But, I've had something to look forward to & keep me going.

My parents ventured up north for a weekend and stayed in what sounds like an incredible hotel in Wensleydale.

On the way back down, they thought it would be nice if I took a day out of Leeds and met them in Harrogate.

Of course. I leapt at the chance.


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Wednesday, November 26

Millionaire's Shortbread

I'm back!!! And yes, I'm doing it in fashion.

I've got caramel and chocolate flying all over the shop for this blog post...


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Tuesday, November 18

Life Lessons

Well, I think an apology is due.

I'm sorry dear readers, I haven't blogged in what feels like an entity.


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Monday, November 3

Ibbs, Eggs & the Abbey

However cheesy this might sound, blogging is a community, (and a tight knit one at that.)

You start following a blog that intrigues you and instantly, you are offered an insight into the life and personal space of somebody else that you have never met. So, it's always a little bit odd when you do meet a blogger that you've been following... You feel as if you know them personally. You know their life details, what they have been up to and their likes/dislikes. It's almost as if you are meeting an old friend!

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Thursday, October 30

How to Cure a Hangover


After three years of university, I've become a bit of a hangover expert.


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Sunday, October 26

Hepworths Deli, Leeds

I've been friends with a girl called Kirsty since my first day of university.

When I arrived with all of my bags, an eager faced and terrified fresher, Kirsty was already sat there on my flat mates bed, nattering away. She's been a constant in my university experience since day 1.

Even though times have changed and so have my friends, Kirsty and I are still close. We always go for lunch dates, complain about our work loads together and are currently planning on going on the ski trip together. (Yes Kirsty, it will be the best week of your life, you have to come!)

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Tuesday, October 21

Peanut Butter & Jelly Oat Bars

I think we have all hit that stage. The weather is getting chilly and blustery, all you want to do is snuggle in bed with a steaming cup of tea and thick jumpers are becoming your new winter staple.

If you can't tell from my blog already, I'm a winter girl. I live for cups of piping hot coffee, I have an obscene number of winter coats and my dream holiday is weaving down ski slopes that are thick with fresh powder.

I'm without a doubt a winter baby.


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Wednesday, October 15

Cow & Calf, Illkley

Last weekend my fabulous house mate Sophie, (Sniper to all the hockey people), turned 21.

The night before, many a drink was had, many a surprise was sprung on her and many a laugh had.

But we weren't done there. Sophie's mother, Pippa, asked myself and my other house mates to join in on one more little surprise...


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Monday, October 13

Chiquito


A couple of weeks ago a little email dropped into my mailbox...

The restaurant chain, Chiquito, asked if I fancied coming down and sampling their brand spanking new menu. How exciting!


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Friday, October 3

Varsity '14

There are two events in my beloved hockey calendar that are my some of my favourite moments at university during the year. I even wrote a little last year about this momentous event too...

The hockey ball/alumni weekend is a cracking way to end the season in May, but, there is nothing better than some 'Beckett Bashing' to begin the year with.

This is the day of green vs. purple. This is the day of uni vs. met. This ladies & gentlemen, is Varisity.



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Wednesday, October 1

Budget Baking Essentials

One of the questions I get asked a lot is...

"How on earth do you manage to bake at university & on a budget?!"

I'm not going to lie nor pretend, it's actually very simple. I invest, I plan and I know where to splurge.

Lots of my bakes are designed with 'affordable' purse strings in mind, I am a student after all.

So, if you fancy making delicious bakes such as these....


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Friday, September 26

Carl's Market Wraps, Leeds

This post is without a doubt dedicated to my dear friend Immy, she is currently doing her study a year abroad in Montpellier, France.

The reason I say this is because this beautiful girl is obsessed with pulled pork. Anywhere, any time... If this delicacy is on the menu, she can't help but pick that meaty and BBQ-ed option. It's inevitable.

I instantly thought of her when a rather happy chap called Carl dropped me a tweet a few weeks ago.

He very kindly offered for me to head on over to his stall and to sample his wonderful pulled pork wraps.

Since I've seen his stall a few times on Briggate in Leeds and always been left drooling, I was thrilled to be asked!

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Friday, September 19

Burghley Horse Trials, 2014

One of my favourite times of year had come again...

I've been visiting ever since I was a tiny tot...

Once again, it was time to don the Barbour jackets & Dubarry boots for the local horse trials.

Yep. It was Burghley week in Stamford.

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Wednesday, September 17

Date & Walnut Banana Bread with Home Made Salted Caramel

'Ello 'ello one and all, I'm back with you!

Apologies for the lack of posts and anything blog related lately. The past few weeks has been a blur of family business, moving into my new student digs and firing balls all over the place at hockey pre season.

But I'm back, I'm with you and I'm finally getting around to replying to comments, posting some new material and generally being present on the world wide web.

I'm planning both a catch up post and also an info post for all of those freshers out there, but in the meantime, I thought you all deserved a bit of food porn on this miserable and wet Wednesday.

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Saturday, September 13

Cannes


So, the last little leg of our French adventure had to end with Cannes. The well known town where Mark Francis was reclining for basically all of the Summer and where they host a rather amazing film festival annually. It's know for its stardom, class and subtle French charm. A day trip was, of course, a necessity.


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Saturday, September 6

Monte Carlo, Monaco

Even though I would have loved to lounge in a bikini by the pool for a whole week, that just wasn't an option. We were situated right in between Antibes, Cannes & only a short train ride from Monaco. It would have been a crime to have selfishly sat in the pool all the time.

(I was also pretty tempted with the Monte Carlo stereotype of glamour. Grace Kelly, casinos & super yachts... Yes please!)

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Tuesday, September 2

"Mangez. Dormez. Nagez . Répétez "

 I thought it was probably about time to blog about my holiday. It feels like an entity ago by now....

Whilst the weather is chucking it down in England's green & pleasant lands, it is currently 30C and crystal blue skies in the south of France... I think I'm developing seasonal affective disorder. I miss the sun already!

This new illness of mine developed after returning from holiday. My dear friend Anna & I jet setted off to Nice with my family before driving along the Cote d'Azur to the town next door to Cannes, Juan les Pins. Perfectly situated in between Cannes & Monaco, it was such an ace location for a weeks visit.

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Friday, August 29

Mr Hyde & Tweat Up present "#NationalBurgerDay"


This is a simple story...  One which involving two young, wide eyed girls, mountains of meat and piles of sauce smothered buns.

This, dear readers, is the story of how this....


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Tuesday, August 26

Plum Crumble

 Well isn't this weather utterly dreadful?!

I've come back from my recent holiday with serious post-sun depression. As I'm sat here flicking through my sun bleached photos, snuggled in my thickest of blankets, the rain outside is chucking it down. A sunny Bank Holiday?! What. A. Joke.

But, as I'm curled up on the sofa, I'm clutching a piping hot bowl of freshly made crumble. This must be the first day of Autumn.


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Thursday, August 14

The Butterfly House


As you might have seen in my Burghley House blog post, I'm pretty good friends with a cracking little blogger called Ibbs.

I mentioned to her that I had some family plans in London a while ago and we couldn't not try to catch up and tie the two together if possible.

Inevitably, where did we meet for lunch? Somewhere that served piled up plates of delicious, fresh sushi of course!


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Saturday, August 9

Mini Chai Tea Cakes


SURPRISE!!!!! The blog has had a revamp!

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Saturday, August 2

If I could jump on a plane right now...

Ever thought about suddenly packing a bag, jumping in a car and heading off to the airport with absolutely no idea where you are going to go? 

Well, I have... A lot. 

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Monday, July 28

#CurrysIntroJuicing

A few weeks ago I received a charming email inviting me to an event that was sure to get me beach ready this summer.
#CurrysIntroJuicing, (what a clever play on words!), was an opportunity to listen to a nutritional expert, experience a hardcore fitness session and, most importantly, juice our own wacky and healthy post workout smoothies. 
A few texts later with my friend Ibbs and the plans were set in stone. 
When the day finally arrived, we turned up at the snazzy offices in our pristine gym kit to be welcomed by a crowd of other friendly faced bloggers.


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Friday, July 25

The Graduate

Any one that follows me on Instagram will know that last week was a rather special one for my family.
The other day, my big brother Ben graduated from Exeter University with a 1st.
What a clever bean!

I thought I would give you a little insight of the day, the glamour of the 'academic dress' and what we got up to as we celebrated.


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Monday, July 21

Perspective

The whole point of this blog for me was to document my university years, look back with pride and happiness at everything within my life and to look forward and appreciate those moments to come. It’s allowed me to appreciate life with a wider lens, a fresh insight and a desire to go out there and do things that I might have otherwise neglected.
You are only young once after all.

Keeping it vague, I had the pleasure of knowing somebody who suffered the dreadful fate of the recent MH17 attack. As perfectly put by one of my good friends, ‘it always happens to the best of us’, and this can’t be a strong enough way to describe this young man who I knew through friends. He touched a wide range of people and the awe worthy legacy he has left behind speaks a thousand words in his favour.

The impact and shock of losing a truly inspirational young man, in any community, puts things into perspective. It makes you realise the vulnerability of life and how your small little life bubble can be easily popped because, shock horror, nothing is set in stone.


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Thursday, July 17

Burghley House, Stamford

The other day I was faffing around at home, trying to organise a chaotic week ahead, when an unexpected text message landed in my inbox...
My friend, Ibbs, was in my neck of the woods for a day.
Hell. To. The. Yes.

After a sizeable brunch at the Buttercross in their sunny garden, I was determined to show Ibbs what was on offer in the area.


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Saturday, July 12

Byron Burger, Leeds

I saw a tweet a few months back which put a beaming smile onto my pale & freckly face.
The beauty that is Byron Burger was finally opening up it's doors in Leeds.
My favourite burger joint in my favourite city? Ahh... It was just like Christmas!

I drove back up north this weekend to take out some books out from the university library (ohh the joys of the looming 3rd year dissertation..), but on the way back, I stopped off for some lunch with my friend Immy
Since Byron opened only 10 days ago, it would be rude not be take a look at their shiny new baby...



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Sunday, July 6

Brown Sugared Peaches & Cream Cake

I'm afraid there isn't really an interesting or jaw dropping story behind this cake.
I came home from work, was home alone, bored and saw a big ol' bowl of fresh peaches...
What else was a girl to do with a free afternoon other than bake?


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Friday, June 27

Borough Market, London

First thing on Saturday morning, Hattie, Jenny & I awoke still in a food coma after the Taste of London festival.
But did this stop us from going for an enormous brunch? Of course not.
Hattie's currently staying on the other side of the Thames near Bermondsey. It's stunning...Quiet, park lined streets with lots of quirky coffee shops dotted along the way. (Plus I've heard rumours that Eddy Redmayne lives there... Just saying.)


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Monday, June 23

Taste of London, Regents Park

On Thursday night I flopped on my sofa and refused to budge.
I'd had a choca blocked week, was seriously in need of a break and what's more my favourite top had just been 'redesigned' by an enthusiastic 2 year old armed with handfuls of sticky rice pudding. (Don't ask.)

But.... All of this chaos was instantly forgotten after a few tweets, some manic phone calls and some spur of the moment decisions (my favourite kind!)
(Big thanks to Lottie & the Duck & Waffle head chef Dan for being a bad influence & persuading me to go at the last minute...)



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Thursday, June 19

English Rose Cake

So what happens when a blogger hasn't baked in three whole weeks...?

...Of course, she goes into a mental state of disrepair and bakes an enormous three tiered cake to compensate for all of the empty cake tins haunting her kitchen since.


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Sunday, June 8

Leeds Food Fest

My friend Immy & I decided to nip into town in the sunshine for a quick coffee last weekend, little did we know there was an enormous food festival going on right in the centre. 
Yep, the exam bubble had well and truly cut us out of the info circuit.
  Best surprise ever? I think so.
Well here's a little food gallery to show you some of the delicious bits on offer throughout the day...


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Sunday, June 1

Boss Burgers, Leeds

This week revision had gotten the best of me. 
I was sat on Friday afternoon, trying to cram my head full of facts on 18thC fertility rates (yay for the Industrial Revolution...), and was failing miserably. My head needed a well earned break and, of course, I took full advantage of the rest. 
Before I knew it, I was bumping and grinding to classic tunes like 'Don't Stop Believing' and 'Timber' downstairs in my university union's best known cheesy night, Fruity Fridays. 
I was loving life once more.
...That was until I woke up the following morning with a thumping headache. Why oh why have I all of a sudden started to develop hangovers?! 
Anyway, both myself and my friend Immy needed a bit of a pick me up this weekend, and so on a spur of the moment decision, we headed off to Boss Burgers.


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Monday, May 26

Stewed Summer Fruit Tart

Apologies that I have been a little bit AWOL as of lately, one exam down, one more more bugger to go!
I've popped home for the bank holiday weekend for a little bit of a break.
Snuggles with the chocolate Labrador, Sunday roasts and family hugs go down wonders when the library has been feeling like Azkaban as it sucks out your soul.


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Sunday, May 18

Dark Chocolate Eclairs

Yesterday I was so sick & so tired revising about the history of bananas, oil and gutta percha gum, (yes, history degrees are more fun than you can believe), that I gave up early and I headed off for some lunch with the hockey girls. 
We sat in the bright sunshine, nattering about our dreaded deadlines and gushing over our desires to hit the sunny Terrace (bar) with multiples pitchers by our sides. I planned to take the afternoon off anyway for a well earned baking break and, of course, at the sheer mention of food the gals were all ears. I told them what I was planning on dishing up, they started laughing about my new nickname of 'cake-sec' (I'm newly on the hockey committee- woo!) and then something that one of the girls said to me struck a chord.

"Oh I wish I could just be born a good baker, I'm simply dreadful at it!"

Well. This I simply don't agree with. 
So here is a little well known known fact....Everyone screws up at baking. 
Yes, even Mary Berry.
It's damn annoying when it goes wrong. I feel like breaking down in tears and binning a badly turned out cake instead of putting it in front of my house mates...Oh the shame of it!! 
But, even though it's disheartening, that's just part of learning the skill and experience. The dreaded  term, 'practise makes perfect' is highly annoying and time consuming, but my gosh is it true. 

I pride my blog on the fact that the recipes on here should be simple, easy to follow and good for people of all skill bases to follow. I try a recipe, multiple times if needed and pop the instructions on here with the tweaks and tips that I found cleared it up a little.
And so today I decided to go outside my comfort zone. 


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Monday, May 12

Belgrave Street Feast, Leeds

For the past month or so, I've seen a huge number of my friends in Leeds click 'attending' on a certain Facebook event. For ages I thought nothing of it, putting it to the back of my mind as an irrelevant niggle until finally, curiosity got the better of me and I decided to give the website a little bit of a stalk.
How I had never heard of the Belgrave Music Hall before, I don't know. But oh my gosh, I'm happy that I now have.


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Saturday, May 10

Lemon & Yoghurt Cake

I hate the library.
It's too quiet. You can't have coffee inside. You can't make a single murmur without being given the devil eyes by about fifty other people. And worst of all, it makes you realise the mountain of work piled up in front of your eyes that you need to do. (Even though it seems utterly irrelevant and pointless.)
So, when I emerge from my hell hole of a library cluster every night, there are two things on my mind:

Food & Bed. 

Yes, I'm a simple girl.


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Tuesday, May 6

Express Yourself

The other week a little email popped into my inbox from a charming man called Alex offering me a 'well deserved break from university'. Anyone who starts an email with "Lovely to e-meet you!" is instantly in my good books, regardless of the rest of the email content.
Anyway, PizzaExpress has just launched its new 'quick, tasty and great value' lunch menu and kindly asked me along to give it a review.
With my house mate Jenny in tow, we skipped on down to Leeds City Centre, giddy with excitement and rumbling stomachs.


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Friday, May 2

Cattlegrid, Leeds

Hello, hello, hello.
I'm back again. Apologies.
Whilst I would like to act like my life is currently full of fun & games, the harsh reality is in fact that the month of May= The dreaded exam season.
I'm going to try and not be too distant for the next month (and I've purposefully planned a couple of bits and bobs ahead) in order to make sure that I don't wilt away in the library stacks instead of soaking up some sunlight and blogging.
So to kick start the month, how about some epic, meaty shots to whet your appetites?
Well then, say hello to the beauty that is Cattlegrid.


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Friday, April 25

Blueberry Burst Muffins

I'm back up in cloudy Leeds, stuck in the library and trying to get the mountains of  Easter work done.
I swear all universities should grant you a joint honours when you graduate,  "BA in.... (& a "Masters in Procrastination")'. As you can tell, work is going marvellously well.
Anyhow, before I drove back up north I whipped up a batch of my favourite muffins to nibble on along the motorway.


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Sunday, April 20

Chocolate Puddles

Happy Easter everyone!
I hope that your weekend is being jam packed full of Lindt bunnies, chocolate eggs & buttery hot cross buns.
 Since the torturous Lent is over, I thought that the chocolate absence on the blog should probably be corrected. Alleluia. It is finally time to smother these viral pages in fifty shades of dark, milk and white. 


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Thursday, April 17

Spell of Sunshine

This week the sun has been out in full force, shining bright and giving gingers like myself some rather questionable burn marks.
So as a little bit of sun celebration, I thought I'd share with you all some little snapshots of my countryside living.


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Monday, April 14

Health Kick Flapjacks

The first thing that was fluttering through my mind after coming back from skiing was the word, 'detox'. A major, major health, sleep and well being kick was needed to get me back in shape.
(After a whole semester of university and a pretty full on week, it was safe to say that I arrived home basically dead on my legs.)
Hitting up the gym most days, sleeping for at least 9 hours a night in my big squishy bed and having my mum cook hearty meals is slowly but surely working its magic.
I'm on the road to recovery!


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Friday, April 11

Simple Soda Bread

TGIF!
The weekend is on its way, Spring is upon us and the sun is shining.

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