Let’s go back in time…

Back to last Sunday when an extremely tired Nicola didn’t crawl out of her pit until 11.16am! We’d had friends round, well I say friends, my boyfriend and mum’s friend and her boyfriend haha! Mum’s getting married next year and it was a good opportunity for everyone to get to know each other before we stayed in the same hotel for a week! But as with any gathering when alcohol and a Wii are present, madness ensued! It took a fair few drinks to get everyone up but eventually there was no stopping…..wait for it…..the men!!!

I have no words!

I don’t think I’ve laughed so hard in ages! My mum’s fiance didn’t even need a remote at one point and got down with his bad self to Katy Perry’s Firework several times on Just Dance 2! My boyfriend gave in and joined him in a Viva Las Vegas number and at one point I had to fight for Yorkshire by giving it some to Tina Turner’s Proud Mary (I won, OBVIOUSLY!) I am the undisputed champion to this particular number, even the window cleaner has witnessed my moves, by accident of course.

Anyway I digress. I eventually crawled out of bed to get ready to meet my friend for lunch in Halifax, but after 3 ignored text messages I took the hint, and hit Frankie and Bennys with the boyf! I had the most amazing pizza that I HAVE to try make at home, a Caesar Salad Pizza. Now, I can fair hear you all gag, but it was amazing, the dressing made it the tastiest pizza ever and I pretty much needed wheeling out of the restaurant. Obviously, as per, I took pictures.

Frankie and Bennys is one of my fave places to eat out!

To start, I had large mushrooms stuffed with cheese, garlic and breadcrumbs, drizzled with a balsamic reduction and some rocket for good measure haha the rocket hid the mushrooms but I promise they were under there somewhere…..

Starter. It doesn't look much but it was amazing, and so filling.

Stuffed mushrooms must be the easiest thing to recreate yet, I find I rarely do. This may be in large because I can’t especially cook, I can bake like a trooper but cook, not so much. I once made mushrooms stuffed with Philadelphia Cream Cheese, garlic and chopped bacon on a bed of rice. I’ll be honest with you, it looked a bit like crap but you should really try it, it was UH-MAY-ZING!

Now for the main event, I kid you not, this was one of the nicest pizzas ever, and I should mention that these 2 courses were part of a deal, 2 courses for £9.95, bargain!

Chicken Caesar Salad Pizza

I should probably apologise for the quality of most of my pictures, I have an oldish Blackberry Curve, everything comes out kinda grey but, you get the idea! I had to remove the tomatoes because I can’t eat seeds in things but seriously, salad dressing on pizza is genius! I thought when Britney Spears told Tina and Brittany on Glee that Ranch Dressing on pizza was good she was just been a bit eccentric but, I beg you all, TRY IT!

God love  www.frankieandbennys.com and they’re amazing chefs!

That’s all for now, but I’ll be back with some pics of my Halloween cupcakes and my first attempt at making seedless raspberry jam!

Ciao for now xoxo

Can someone please tell me where the week has gone?

WHAT.A.WEEK!

I haven’t even had chance to blog this week, I have so much to catch you up on (like my amazing meal Sunday at Frankie and Bennies and more Halloween Cupcakes!) I genuinely seem to have blinked and missed a whole 5 days!

 

And now here I am ready to greet Saturday, the menacing little day that it is! You’d think working from home would be a breeze, most people believe this but let me tell you, this is a HUGE misconception. In between actually working there are so many trips to the supermarket per day it would make Mr Tesco himself wince, to keep me going I have managed to consume 6 bars of Angel Cake, 3 Boxes of M&S waffle biscuits, half a box of M&S raspberry sandwich waffle biscuits, half a box of M&S chocolate sandwich waffle biscuits, a couple of mini gingerbread men, a few bowl of Lucky Charms and a very healthy Passion Fruit Count on Us mousse (all in the last 2 days, oops! and I wonder why I’m wiped out.)

 

(……did I even blog about my Saturday night adventures last week?)

 

Ugh, I’m gonna get myself together and sort some blogs out that I need to catch up on and maybe do them tomorrow and Sunday. Tomorrow night we’re hopefully doing something for Halloween, it was supposed to be York Dungeon but you try to get a hotel for 1 night in York that costs less than £100, it ain’t easy! So I think we’ll be driving to Pendle, should be a good night. I’ll keep you posted 🙂

 

Cioa xoxo

Lucky Lucky Charms!!

I can’t actually put into words how excited I am right now (though this could be the E numbers!!) I went shopping with my Grandma this morning to Leeds to take some Hunter Wellies back (don’t even get me started on Offices return policy, customer service is NOT their strong point!) and we popped into Harvey Nichols for a look round. Now, I haven’t really ventured past Floor 3 there for a while (beauty – Floor 1, shoes and women’s clothes – Floor 3!) but we went up to the top floor today and had a look around at the food and, Harvey Nichols, I SALUTE YOU! They had an amazing range of American groceries, not as large as Selfridges obviously but large enough so I could get my Lucky Charm fix!! I also bought those Panda faces with chocolate in and some Pretzel Petes Honey and Mustard pretzel crisps. I’m in love. Lucky Charms are so yummy, why oh why did the UK pull them off of our shelves? Same with Poptarts, get it together Britain, Chocolate and Strawberry are not the best flavours and do not compare at all to Hot Fudge Sundae or Cookie Dough!

Who needs Rice Krispies when you have Lucky Charms?! Pffft.

So these have been my little after lunch snack! I do have the serious munchies though so may have to go raid the fridge……..

Aside from my Leeds trip I’ve been having a think about Christmas again. Mum bought the Ideal Home’s Complete Guide to Christmas again this year and it has a few pretty tempting recipes in. Has anyone ever tried Chestnut Soup?? I certainly intend to attempt to make the Mulled Syrup recipe, it says good as a ‘gift for him’ but, seriously, this is likely to become a gift for me!! Anyway, I thought I’d write it up incase anyone else wants to give it a whirl…..

Mulled Syrupwww.housetohome.co.uk/christmas

You will need:

9oz/275g golden caster sugar

2 cinnamon sticks

12 juniper berries

8 whole cloves

3/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg

2 Tablespoons Orange liqueur

1 Orange, sliced (optional, this is for decoration of the bottles)

Funnel and 2 sterilised glass bottles

  1. Put the first 6 ingredients into a large saucepan with 900ml of water. Heat the mixture gently and stir to dissolve the sugar slowly, then boil for 5 mins. Leave to cool in the pan.
  2. Set the oven for 150c/300f/gas mark 2. Line a baking pan with with greaseproof paper and lay the slices of orange on to bake for 20 mins until they are dry.
  3. Using the funnel, pour the mulling syrup into the bottles, dividing the cinnamon sticks etc between the 2.
  4. Seal and store for up to 2 months.

TO SERVE:

  • Pour 450ml of syrup and 1 bottle of red wine (or cider etc) into a large saucepan and heat gently until warm. DO NOT BOIL.

TO DECORATE BOTTLE AS A GIFT:

  • Push a skewer/kebab stick through the centre of each dried orange slice to make a hole then thread through some ribbon and attach to each bottle. Finish with a home-made label and instructions.

Sounds delicious if you ask me! If anybody tries to make it please do let me know how it turns out or as soon as I make it, I will of course blog about it (if I can focus on the keyboard haha)

This post has turned into quite a long one today! I’m now off to scour www.Pinterest.com for crockpot recipes! It’s getting colder by the day here and I need my cosy food!

This made me laugh! Gotta love Google Pics

Ciao for now

xoxo

Living the dream……!

Let me paint a picture for you as to what I’m doing right this second (aside from blogging)…..it’s 9.19pm on a Friday night and I’m sat with Top of the Pops 2 – 1976 on the TV. Not my choice you understand, it’s been sat on our Sky Plus just waiting for the painful moment when I have to hit the play button and not the delete one. Meh. I mean really, did people actually listen to this tripe, a song with some sort of duck in, I’m gonna post a link to YouTube so you can clearly feel the pain I’m in!!  Hit play at your own peril —->  http://youtu.be/irgJPqkuakM

On a lighter note, LOOK WHAT I FOUND IN TESCO

I lept on these with such gusto, like a child on an ice cream!

I cannot tell you how happy this makes me, up until Thursday, the only place you could buy Hershey’s was Asda or an American Sweets company ‘down south’ where I have to pay a large amount for postage, unless I spend £50 which, I do sometimes so, I have a serious weakness for American food! So yeah, I’ve managed to get through a few packs of these in the last 24 hours….my bad!

Also, now this is not my cup of tea but if you like Jaffa Cakes……

A yard of Jaffa Cakes, for real?!

Madness I tell you madness!!

TELEVISION UPDATE: Khloe Kardashians wedding is now on, this makes me feel happier 🙂

I feel like I’m living in Oz!

Oz as in the Wizard of, not Australia! The wind has been a nightmare here today and as for the rain, don’t even get me started. Not only did I get a soaking, TWICE, my poor little ballet pumps filled with water (ok not the smartest choice of footwear but I can’t feel the car pedals in my UGGS) and my hair now resembles something like my cat used to drag in!! Ugh.

On a lighter note, today I had to prepare an order from a girl I went to school with for some gluten free Jack Skellington Cupcakes. No pressure there then! I love making cupcakes for family and friends, I really do, but when it’s someone you haven’t seen for 10 years (thanks Facebook) the pressure is kind of immense! And I did have a slight nightmare with what were supposed to be Jacks head. I planned on white chocolate truffles with his little face painted on but…..well lets just say I didn’t anticipate the mix looking like custard and not setting even when put in the freezer for nearly 2 hours! So I had to resort to a plan B, with only half an hour to spare I wacked some Wiltons White Chocolate into one of their Halloween molds and improvised, A LOT! Here’s the finished product….

Jack Skellington they are not, but I do still love them!

AND bonus, I had 8 left so you just know what I’m having for dessert tonight!! Unfortunately, Americolor black food colouring has stained my poor little cuticles (word to the wise, use with caution haha) so I kinda look like a cross between something from The Nightmare Before Christmas and Helena Bonhem Carters character from Sweeny Todd with my hair now!

I’ll post the recipe for these gluten free bad boys tomorrow (I daren’t go back out to my car tonight for my recipe book fear of doing a Mary Poppins and flying off to another land!) but until then, ciao for now folks! xoxo

Hello bloggersphere!

Well, here goes my first blog!

I realised today whilst browsing on www.pinterest.com (it’s becoming an addictive habit!) that this time of year is possibly the best time of year for heart warming food (something about the spices that we seem to dust off in Autumn/Fall just gives me a warm glow inside!) I came across an amazing recipe for Cinnamon Buns (as soon as I make them I’ll post it on here), a recipe for pumpkin scones, and some marvellous crock pot recipes.  If you’re a crafty person as well as a foodie then I cannot recommend this site enough, I’ve got so many interesting ideas for handmade Christmas presents its untrue!

Anyway, I digress, what I’m really trying to say is I’m going to be taking some inspiration from this site and baking/cooking so many different Autumn/Fall goodies that I decided to share my obsession with the blogging world! It’s becoming a bit of a standard joke now with my boyfriend that whenever we go out I’m always taking pictures of my food to show my family what cool things I’ve tried, so it makes sense to share my thoughts and recommendations with you all. One example is my dessert below, an edible chocolate bowl, I mean seriously, how amazing!! This was from a restaurant in Halifax where I’ll be going again for Sunday Lunch with a girl friend this weekend so I’ll post a link and other pics Sunday!

You can't go far wrong with brownies, ice cream and a white chocolate edible bowl!

They were so accommodating because I have problems with too much egg in products, they gave me raspberries and orange to make up for my lack of brownie bites!

Anyway folks, I’m off to get my Gleek on and ponder what recipes to make first from my collection on Pinterest!

Ciao xoxo