The Best Stuff: Ceramic Numbered Mixing Bowls

Ceramic Numbered Mixing Bowls from Cox & Cox

Ceramic Numbered Mixing Bowls from Cox & Cox

Just spotted these, new in at Cox & Cox and they are fab! Simple, elegant with a smidge of quirky – just my kind of thing. They are dishwasher and microwave-safe.

Practical and stylish - I love!

Practical and stylish – I love!

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Best Macaroni & Cheese Recipe

IMG_0471

Pasta! Pasta!

Delicious, family-crowd-pleasing recipes are gold in our house and in the top ten of our favourite family dishes is my macaroni & cheese. Always a hit when the kids’ friends are over. It’s a pretty straight forward, run-of-the-mill recipe but I add a magic ingredient – bacon.

My Macaroni & Cheese With Bacon

 200g lardons/chopped bacon

400g dried macaroni pasta or any other pasta shape you like

90g butter

100g fresh breadcrumbs (I whizz a few slices of bread in the food processor)

4 tbsp plain flour

1 tsp mustard powder

Generous pinch of nutmeg

400ml milk

180g grated cheddar cheese

100g mozzarella, drained & chopped

80g grated parmesan cheese

  • Preheat your oven to 200C/400F/Gas mark 6.
  • Fry the lardons/bacon pieces until golden and set to one side.
  • Cook the pasta in a pan of boiling water for about 3 minutes less than the packet instructions. When cooked, drain and put to one side.
  • Melt 25g of the butter in a medium saucepan then add the fresh breadcrumbs, stir them so they are all coated with the melted butter and put to one side.
  • To make the white cheese sauce – melt the remaining butter in a pan then add the flour and stir. Allow it to cook for about 2 minutes then add the nutmeg and mustard powder. Now start adding the milk, bit by bit, and stirring it in with a whisk to smooth out any lumps – keep going until all the milk has been added then bring to the boil (keep stirring or the bottom will burn) for about 3-4 minutes so the sauce thickens. Remove from the heat and add the grated cheddar cheese and stir in.
  • Once the cheese sauce is made, add the cooked and drained pasta, the mozzarella and the cooked bacon/lardons and stir all together.
  • Put the mixture into an ovenproof dish.
  • Mix together the now cooled breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese and sprinkle generously all over the top of the dish.
  • Bake in the overn for about 20 minutes until the top is golden brown.

 Of course, you can leave out the bacon and you’ll still have a very delicious meal. Enjoy!

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The Best Stuff: Mood Mugs – Made Me Smile!

Mood Mugs at Design55

Mood Mugs – ahhh, they would brighten any day – at Design55 – £9.00 each

No matter how gloomy your day, no matter how stressed or tired you may be feeling, a hot cup of tea in a Mood Mug will make everything feel good again.

I love that they are made from porcelain and have a double wall for insulation so the drink stays hot but your hands don’t get scalded.

Mood Mugs - double insulated

Mood Mugs – double insulated

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Competition Closing Alert – Attitude Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products Bundle to Win!

Attitude Eco-Friendly Dishwashing Liquid

Attitude Eco-Friendly Dishwashing Liquid

Our competition to give away a bundle of five Attitude eco-friendly cleaning products to one lucky winner ends tomorrow.  The prize bundle will include;

  • Attitude All Purpose Cleaning Spray
  • Attitude Dishwashing Liquid
  • Attitude Hand Soap
  • Attitude Window & Mirror Cleaner
  • Attitude Floor Surface Tile & Wood Cleaner

Attitude is a developer and manufacturer eco-friendly domestic cleaning products.  They promote responsible consumption by offering high performance products that have minimal impact on our health and the environment. The Attitude range includes household and body care products for adults and children.

You will find the fabulous Attitude eco-friendly products at BigGreenSmile.com – one of the best sites on the web for eco-friendly products that are effective, natural and produced with the utmost consideration for the environment. BigGreenSmile.com don’t believe in using chemicals where they aren’t needed, especially when there is a good natural alternative.

BigGreenSmile.com

BigGreenSmile.com

To enter please answer the first two questions in the Rafflecopter box below. You will then be able to generate more entries by completing the other, optional, entry options. The closing date for this competition is tomorrow, Wednesday 11th December 2013 and only entries received on or before that date can be included. The winner will be the first entry, chosen randomly, with the correct answer. Good luck!

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Competition Closing – ‘Sweet Things’ by Annie Riggs to Win!

Sweet Things by Annie Rigg

‘Sweet Things’ by Annie Rigg

From traditional toffee, fluffy clouds of marshmallow and creamy maple and pecan fudge to sherbet with lolly dippers, the recipes in Sweet Things, the latest mouthwatering book by Annie Rigg, are the stuff of childhood dreams. With Christmas approaching and thoughts of what gifts to give – homemade sweet things will delight.

Annie Rigg is a bestselling author, recipe writer and freelance food stylist who has worked for Sainsbury’s Magazine, Olive, Delicious, Country Living and Good Food Magazine as well as a number of top chefs.

Sweet Things by Annie Rigg

Chocolate!

We are delighted to be giving away three copies of Annie’s latest book, Sweet Things, a copy each to three lucky winners in this competition.

To enter please answer the first three questions in the Rafflecopter box below. You will then be able to generate more entries by completing the other, optional, entry options. The closing date for this competition is tomorrow, Friday 22nd November 2013 and only entries received on or before that date can be included. The winners will be the first three entries, chosen randomly, with the correct answer. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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New Competition – A Bundle of Attitude Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products to Win!

Attitude Eco-Friendly Hand Soap

Attitude Eco-Friendly Hand Soap

Attitude is a developer and manufacturer eco-friendly domestic cleaning products.  They promote responsible consumption by offering high performance products that have minimal impact on our health and the environment. The Attitude range includes household and body care products for adults and children.

You will find the fabulous Attitude eco-friendly products at BigGreenSmile.com – one of the best sites on the web for eco-friendly products that are effective, natural and produced with the utmost consideration for the environment. BigGreenSmile.com don’t believe in using chemicals where they aren’t needed, especially when there is a good natural alternative.

We are delighted to be giving away a bundle of five Attitude eco-friendly cleaning products to one lucky winner in this competition. The bundle will include;

  • Attitude All Purpose Cleaning Spray
  • Attitude Dishwashing Liquid
  • Attitude Hand Soap
  • Attitude Window & Mirror Cleaner
  • Attitude Floor Surface Tile & Wood Cleaner
  • Attitude Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products

    Attitude Eco-Friendly All Purpose Cleaning Spray

    To enter please answer the first two questions in the Rafflecopter box below. You will then be able to generate more entries by completing the other, optional, entry options. The closing date for this competition is Wednesday 11th December 2013 and only entries received on or before that date can be included. The winner will be the first entry, chosen randomly, with the correct answer. Good luck!

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

    The Best Stuff: Butter Dishes

    Butter dishes come in sorts of designs and colours. Whilst researching for this article I was truly astonished by the variety out there and I really enjoyed putting together my list of favourites. Presented to you, some of what I consider to be the best butter dishes to grace any table…

    Just Slate Mini Butter Dish from John Lewis

    Just Slate Mini Butter Dish from John Lewis – £32.00

    Clay Butter Dish in Honey from JasmineWay

    Clay Butter Dish in Honey from JasmineWay – £32.00

    Culinary Concepts Bee Domed Butter Dish from John Lewis

    Culinary Concepts Bee Domed Butter Dish from John Lewis – £33.50

    Portmeirion Botanic Blue Butter Dish

    Portmeirion Botanic Blue Butter Dish – £19.50

    Jonathan Adler Whale Butter Dish

    Jonathan Adler Whale Butter Dish – £68.00

    Handmade Stoneware Blue Butter Dish Rustic Leaf Design Anahita King Studio on Etsy

    Handmade Stoneware Blue Butter Dish Rustic Leaf Design Anahita King Studio on Etsy – £28.90

    Sleeping Rabbit Ceramic Butter Dish from Graham & Green

    Sleeping Rabbit Ceramic Butter Dish from Graham & Green – £24.00

    Emma Bridgewater Black Toast Butter Dish

    Emma Bridgewater Black Toast Butter Dish – £32.95

    VW Vans & Caravans Butter Dish by Julia Davey

    VW Vans & Caravans Butter Dish by Julia Davey – £24.00

    'Butter' Dish by Sorbet Living on notonthehighstreet.com

    ‘Butter’ Dish by Sorbet Living on notonthehighstreet.com – £25.00

    PiP Studio Shabby Chic Blue Butter Dish from John Lewis

    PiP Studio Shabby Chic Blue Butter Dish from John Lewis – £8.50

    Robot Butter Dish by Julia Davey

    Robot Butter Dish by Julia Davey – £25.00

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    New Competition – ‘Sweet Things’ by Annie Rigg to Win!

    Sweet Things by Annie Rigg

    ‘Sweet Things’ by Annie Rigg

    Soft, delicately flavoured nougat bars, topped with vanilla caramel and covered in chocolate that are just big enough for three or four (big) bites and far surpass the shop-bought equivalent. Crisp butterscotch popcorn with just a hint of sea salt is the perfect adult indulgence, a box of Praline Hearts makes a delightful gift. Just a few of the mouthwatering recipes to be found in Sweet Things, the latest mouthwatering book by Annie Rigg.

    With Christmas approaching and thoughts of what gifts to give – homemade sweet things will delight.

    Sweet Things by Annie Rigg

    Marshmallows!

    Annie Rigg is a bestselling author, recipe writer and freelance food stylist who has worked for Sainsbury’s Magazine, Olive, Delicious, Country Living and Good Food Magazine as well as a number of top chefs.

    We are delighted to be giving away three copies of Annie’s latest book, Sweet Things, a copy each to three lucky winners in this competition.

    To enter please answer the first three questions in the Rafflecopter box below. You will then be able to generate more entries by completing the other, optional, entry options. The closing date for this competition is Friday 22nd November 2013 and only entries received on or before that date can be included. The winners will be the first three entries, chosen randomly, with the correct answer. Good luck!

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

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    The Best Stuff: Beautiful & Colourful Apron from Lush Designs

    Vegetable Apron from Lush Designs

    Vegetable Apron from Lush Designs – £20.00

    How fabulous is this apron? I love the bold colours and the retro feel of the design. For something as practical as an apron, a fabulous design is essential.

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    Plum & Almond Tart Recipe

    Plum & Almond Tart Recipe

    Plum & Almond Tart

    The graceful arrival of Autumn turns my mind and appetite towards seasonal fruit puddings and desserts. Plums are one of the nicest autumnal crops and put together with almonds in a moist and tasty tart – what more could you want?

    Plum & Almond Tart

    Sweet Shortcrust Pastry

    250g plain flour

    125g cold, cubed butter

    2 egg yolks (free range please)

    2 tbsp caster sugar

    pinch of salt

    splash of milk if needed

    If you want to use ready-made sweet shortcrust pastry then that’s just fine – I have made this with both options and it’s just as good either way.

    • Put the butter and flour into a food processor and whizz until it has a fine breadcrumb consistancy.
    • Add the egg yolks, sugar and a pinch of salt and blitz again until it becomes a ball of pastry dough.
    • Roll out thinly then line a 23cm tart tin (loose-bottom is best) and trim the excess.
    • Chill in the fridge for at least 5 minutes or whilst prepping the filling.

    Almond & Plum Filling

    150g soft, unsalted butter

    150g caster sugar

    3 medium eggs (free range please)

    75g ground almonds

    75g self-raising flour

    1/2 tsp baking powder

    1tsp vanilla extract

    6 ripe plums

    2 tbsp flaked almonds

    • Preheat your oven to 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4.
    • Stone the plums and cut into either quarters or eighths – my preference is smaller pieces but others like a bigger plumy bite!
    • Put the butter, sugar, ground almonds, flour, vanilla extract and baking powder in a mixer and whizz briefly until just combined – then add the eggs, one by one until all is well blended.
    • Take your pastry-lined tin from the fridge and spoon in the tart filling. Place the plums evenly on top of the filling – they will sink down during the bake. Scatter over the flaked almonds
    • Bake for 30-35 minutes until golden brown.
    • When done, sprinkle some icing sugar on top and serve with a double cream or a dollop of creme fraiche – vanilla custard would be nice too.
    Plum & Almond Tart Recipe

    Plum & Almond Tart

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    The Best Stuff: Dining Room Table Sets

    20130821-162310.jpg

    Summer is an exciting time for many, it’s often when friends and family get together, BBQs replace indoor dining and the conservatory becomes the new place to be. Happiness is flowing, each family member usually brings along a dish and whilst the adults chatter away, the kids play on the green.

    However, continuous family gatherings can often mean when it comes to sitting down to a meal together, there are quite simply not enough seats. Investing in a variety of Sainsbury’s mix and match dining room sets can quickly solve this problem. The only other option involves sharing seats, setting up the kids in a separate area or cramming uncomfortably into the one tight space.

    When it comes to buying into dining tables and chairs, many homeowners will often pick one set which features several chairs and just one table. The chairs are often already matched to the table, which leaves little room for individuality. You may wish to buy into chairs with decorative backs, plush cushions or fabric styles if customisation is a major priority.

    20130820-120731.jpg

    If you find decorating the table to be part of the fun of BBQ season, then throw a vivid coloured table cloth over the surface, set everyone up with a place mat and try handing out different coloured serviettes. You can even adjust the lighting if you feel so inclined.

    Wooden serving bowls which match the dining room table perfectly are another great option for those who want a congruous style. They look so much nicer than some plastic bowls and are a much safer option than glass. You might even be able to pick up matching serving spoons too.

    Whatever you decide, the important thing to remember is that your dining setup says more about you than you might think.

    If you’re planning lavish parties then getting the dining area right will ensure that the right atmosphere is set and this could even affect the reception which your culinary creations get from friends and family alike.

    This is a guest post from Sainsbury’s. If you’re looking for a way to make your meals go down a storm then Sainsbury’s could be just what you need to lift your dinner parties. Take a look at their fantastic selection online today.

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    Competition Closing – £20 Rachel’s Organic Voucher to Win!

    Rachel's Organic Dairy Products Voucher Competition

    Rachel’s Organic & Delicious Dairy Products

    Our competition to give away a Rachel’s Organic £20 voucher to one lucky winner ends tomorrow.

    Rachel's Organic Dairy Products Voucher Competition

    Rachel’s Organic Dairy Products

    To enter please answer the first three questions in the Rafflecopter box below. You will then be able to generate more entries by completing the other, optional, entry options. The closing date for this competition is tomorrow, Monday 5th August 2013 and only entries received on or before that date can be included. The winner will be the first entry, chosen randomly, with the correct answer. Good luck!

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

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    New Competition – £20 Rachel’s Organic Voucher to Win!

    Rachel's Organic Dairy Products Voucher Competition

    Rachel’s Organic & Delicious Dairy Products

    Once upon I time, I was advised by a well informed friend that if you are going to eat well, then choosing organic dairy products is a smart thing to do indeed. I listened to my friend and discovered for myself that organic dairy products also taste very, very nice too.

    I have long been a fan of Rachel’s yoghurts and other yummy dairy foods – the rice pudding is a big favourite in our house.

    To celebrate the launch of Rachel’s low fat mango yoghurt, we are giving away a Rachel’s £20 voucher to one lucky winner in this competition!

    Rachel's Organic Dairy Products Voucher Competition

    Rachel’s Organic Dairy Products

    To enter please answer the first three questions in the Rafflecopter box below. You will then be able to generate more entries by completing the other, optional, entry options. The closing date for this competition is Monday 5th August 2013 and only entries received on or before that date can be included. The winner will be the first entry, chosen randomly, with the correct answer. Good luck!

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

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    Cinnamon & Chocolate Hazelnut Spread Muffins – Recipe

    Cinnamon and chocolate hazelnut muffins

    Cinnamon and chocolate hazelnut muffins – very tasty bit in the middle!

    I spotted these Nutella-Stuffed Cinnamon Muffins on Sally’s Baking Addiction blog and banged my head a few times on the keyboard, trying to translate the American measurements. Along the way I made a few tweaks of my own and scaled up the quantities. Here is my version…

    Cinnamon & Chocolate Hazelnut Muffins

    200g soft unsalted butter

    200g soft brown sugar

    2 medium eggs (free range please)

    1 tsp vanilla extract

    200ml milk

    300g self-raising flour

    1 tsp baking powder

    1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

    pinch of nutmeg (go easy on this or it’ll overpower)

    pinch of salt

    Chocolate hazelnut spread – Nutella, Green & Blacks, whatever you like…

    • Preheat your oven to 200C/400F/Gas mark 6 and pop muffins cases into your muffin tray.
    • Cream together the soft butter and brown sugar then add the egg, vanilla extract and milk. I use my electric mixer but any method you choose is good. It my look a bit curdled at this stage but hang in there…
    • Now gently fold in, by hand, the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Don’t overmix, just combined is what you’re looking for.
    • Spoon a table spoon of mixture into the bottom of each muffin case – should be about a third full.
    • Put a teaspoon of chocolate spread on top of the mixture you’ve just put into the cases…
    Cinnamon & chocolate hazelnut muffins

    A dollop of chocolate spread right in the middle.

    • Now put another big tablespoon of the muffin mixture on top of the chocolate spread.
    • Bake for about 15 minutes until golden brown on top.
    • Cool the muffins on a wire track while you prepare the topping…

    Cinnamon Sugar Topping

    50g butter

    2 generous teaspoons of ground cinnamon

    50g caster sugar

    • Melt the butter – in a microwave or on the hob.
    • Mix together well the cinnamon and sugar.
    • Dip the top of each muffin first in the melted butter then in the cinnamon sugar – roll them around to make sure they are very well covered and voila – enjoy!
    Very tasty Cinnamon Chocolate Hazelnut Muffinsq

    Very tasty Cinnamon Chocolate Hazelnut Muffins

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    The Best Stuff: Egg Storage

    A few weeks ago two new garden residents arrived; Maple and Syrup – our two very first chickens and they are fabulous. If you didn’t know already, chickens are really lovely pets and they reward us with two delicious, fresh, eggs each and every day. Sensible egg storage that keeps them in day order was high on the agenda as we wouldn’t want today’s eggs to be eaten before yesterday’s, if that makes sense, so we opted for the Egg Skelter from Omlet;

    Egg Skelter from Omlet

    Egg Skelter from Omlet – in silver grey – £19.79

    I must point out that in my far-too-much research about domestic chicken keeping I’ve learnt that you should store your eggs with the pointy end down – unlike those in the image above….

    Anyway, I got to browsing and put together a list of other lovely egg storage solutions for you…

    Wooden Egg Cabinet from The Cooks Kitchen

    Wooden Egg Cabinet from The Cooks Kitchen – £10.25

    Emma Bridgewater Polka Dot Large Hen On Nest

    Emma Bridgewater Polka Dot Large Hen On Nest – £49.95

    Large Wire Egg Basket from Garden Trading

    Large Wire Egg Basket from Garden Trading – £26.50

     

    Wire Chicken Egg Basket from The Conran Shop

    Wire Chicken Egg Basket from The Conran Shop – £10.95

     

    Egg Collector by Freshly Forked

    Egg Collector
    by Freshly Forked at notonthehighstreet.com – £11.25

     

    Terracotta Egg Rack from Freshly Forked

    Terracotta Egg Rack from Freshly Forked – £13.50 (was £15.50)

     

    Wooden Egg Holder from Lakeland

    Wooden Egg Holder from Lakeland – £15.99

     

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    The Best Sale Stuff: Bowlover Food Covers by Hunter Gatherer at The Wise House

    Bowlover Food Covers by Hunter Gatherer from The Wise House

    Bowlover Food Covers by Hunter Gatherer at The Wise House – now £7.65 (was £9.00) for a set of 6 in three sizes – bargain!

    Sunny Summer days means al-fresco dining and happiness flows – but not when pesky flies and bugs bombard your food. Gah! Hey presto, problem solved with these fabulous Bowlover food covers by Hunter Gatherer at The Wise House and they are on sale too!

    They are 100% cotton, machine washable, re-usable and stylish and will end your frusting battles with cling film not to mention the eco brownie points.

    Available in Salad (above), and Gingham (below).

    Bowlover Food Covers in Gingham by Hunter Gatherer at The Wise House

    Bowlover Food Covers in Gingham by Hunter Gatherer at The Wise House – now only £8.46 (was £9.95) for a set of 6 in three sizes.

    The original Bowlovers with austerity phrases are also available at The Wise House;

    Original Bowlover Food Covers by Hunter Gatherer at The Wise House

    Original Bowlover Food Covers by Hunter Gatherer at The Wise House – £9.95 for set of 6 in three sizes

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    Competition Closing: ‘Love, Bake, Nourish’ by Amber Rose.

    Love, Bake, Nourish by Amber Rose Competition

    ‘Love, Bake, Nourish’ by Amber Rose, published by Kyle Books, photography by Ali Allen

    Our competition to give away five copies of ‘Love, Bake, Nourish‘ by Amber Rose, one each to five lucky winners, closes tomorrow. Amber’s beautiful book is full of utterly delicious and nourishing recipes that avoid using refined white flour and white sugar. Her recipes for cakes and puddings use fruit and honey for sweetness, seasonal fruits for nourishment and flours suchs as buckwheat, spelt and rye to give depth of flavour.

    Love, Bake, Nourish by Amber Rose competition

    Lavendar, lemon & honey cake from ‘Love, Bake, Nourish’ by Amber Rose. Published by Kyle Books. Photography by Ali Allen

     To enter please answer the first three questions in the Rafflecopter box below. You will then be able to generate more entries by completing the other, optional, entry options. The closing date for this competition is tomorrow, Friday 7th June 2013 and only entries received on or before that date can be included. The winners will be the first five entries, chosen randomly, with the correct answer. Good luck!

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

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    The Best Stuff: Moroccan Ceramics at Maroque

    Large Fez antiqued platter in blue from Maroque

    Large Fez antiqued platter in blue from Maroque – £58.50

    Maroque is a wonderful website find, a real treasure trove to slowly browse through – it is the leading UK shopping site for Moroccan lanterns, lamps, furniture and gifts. I was particularly drawn to their Moroccan ceramics section.

    Mini soup bowl in a traditional Moroccan pattern in olive from Maroque

    Mini soup bowl in olive from Maroque – £5.75

     

    Medium patterned cooking tagine in turquoise from Maroque

    Medium patterned cooking tagine in turquoise from Maroque – £42.00

    There is much more to be found on Maroque with Moroccan lanterns and furniture. There is also a fantastic Moroccan food section with some delicious Moroccan recipes.

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    The Best Stuff: Picnic Baskets and Cool Bags

    The smidge of sunshine we’ve been graced with recently has me wanting to eat outdoors as often as possible. One of the nicest things to do is pack a picnic, gather up the children and head out on some adventure across the fields. A picnic cool bag is a must and I’ve been browsing around and found the following…

    Turquoise Picnic Cool Bag from H&M

    Turquoise Picnic Cool Bag from H&M – £12.99

     

    Polka Dot Flap 4 Person Picnic Hamper from BHS

    Red Polka Dot Picnic Hamper from BHS – £45.00 (was £90.00)

    Concept International Contour Picnic Backpack, 4 Person, Green

    Concept International Contour Picnic Backpack in Green from John Lewis – £35.00

     

    John Lewis Pioneer Coolbag Carrier

    John Lewis Pioneer Coolbag Carrier – £25.00

     

    Anorak Kissing Robins Picnic Hamper at Amara Living

    Anorak Kissing Robins Picnic Hamper at Amara Living – £85.00

    Logan Lidded Picnic Basket from Habitat

    Logan Lidded Picnic Basket from Habitat – £25.00

     

    Coolmovers Sherbet 2 person picnic hamper from House of Fraser

    Coolmovers Sherbet Picnic Hamper from House of Fraser – £60.00 (was £120.00)

    EUROHIKE Stripe Picnic Backpack from Millets

    EUROHIKE Stripe Picnic Backpack from Millets – £40.00

     

    Paradise Striped Large Cool Bag from Marks & Spencer

    Paradise Striped Large Cool Bag from Marks & Spencer – £12.00

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    Competition Closing: £50 Bundle of Sistema Bakery Storage Boxes to Win!

    Sistema Cake & Muffin Storage Box

    Sistema Cake & Muffin 8.8L Storage Box

    Our competition to give away a £50 bundle of the very useful Sistema Bakery storage containers to one lucky winner ends tomorrow.

    The prize bundle includes the following;

    Sistema Bakery Split 630ml Storage Container

    Sistema Bakery Split 630ml Storage Box

    Sistema Bakery 685ml Storage Box

    Sistema Bakery 685ml Storage Box

    Sistema Bakery 1.56L Box With Cup

    Sistema Bakery 1.56L Box With Cup

    Sistema Bakery 2.4L Box With Cup

    Sistema Bakery 2.4L Box With Cup

    Sistema Bakery 3.25L Box With Cup

    Sistema Bakery 3.25L Box With Cup

    Sistema Bakery Cake and Muffin Storage Box

    Sistema Bakery Cake and Muffin Storage Box

    To enter please answer the first three questions in the Rafflecopter box below. You will then be able to generate more entries by completing the other, optional, entry options. The closing date for this competition is tomorrow, Monday 3rd June 2013 and only entries received on or before that date can be included. The winner will be the first entry, chosen randomly, with the correct answer. Good luck!

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

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    Competition Closing: Copies of ‘The Set Table: The Art of Small Gatherings’ by Hannah Shuckburgh to Win!

    The Set Table by Hannah Shuckburgh

    The Set Table by Hannah Shuckburgh

    Our competition to give away three copies of ‘The Set Table: the Art of Small Gatherings’ by author and journalist Hannah Shuckburgh, ends tomorrow.

    The Set Table

    Hannah Shuckburgh’s new book will inspire you to make even the smallest of gatherings special with modest resources. ‘The Set Table’ is about clearing away the clutter and complications of daily life creating a warm, welcoming setting for unforgettable meals with the people you love. The book has ideas for every aspect of a well-set table – from napkins to glassware, cutlery to lighting.

    To enter please answer the first three questions in the Rafflecopter box below. You will then be able to generate more entries by completing the other, optional, entry options. The closing date for this competition is tomorrow, Wednesday 29th May 2013 and only entries received on or before that date can be included. The winners will be the first three entries, chosen randomly, with the correct answer. Good luck!

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

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    The Best Stuff on Etsy: Lulu & Luca

    Floral print tea towel set of 3

    Floral Print Towels from Lulu and Luca on Etsy – set of 3 – £26.45

    Pretty, pretty tea towels, I just can’t resist, I have too many but I keep finding more and more that I’ve just got to have.

    The beautiful prints at Lulu and Luca on Etsy are just my sort of thing.

    Art deco rose tea towel set of 3 from Lulu and Luca on Etsy

    Art Deco Rose Tea Towels from Lulu and Luca on Etsy – set of 3 – £26.45

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    The Best Stuff: Bambu Cutting Edge Chopping Board

    Bambu Cutting Edge Chopping Board at Green Tulip

    Bambu Cutting Edge Chopping Board at Green Tulip – small £12.00, medium £16.00

    We love the simple, sleek design of these bamboo cutting boards found at Green Tulip. They are available in 2 sizes; small and medium and 4 colours; kiwi green, robin egg blue, fushia and cobalt.

    A subtle splash of funky colour.

    Robin Egg Blue Bamboo Cutting Edge Chopping Board at Green Tulip

    Robin Egg Blue Bamboo Cutting Edge Chopping Board at Green Tulip – medium size £16.00

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    Poachpod Review – A Minor Kitchen Miracle

    Poachpod

    Poachpod in Green – set of 2 from Lakeland – £4.99

    We eat alot of eggs in our house – I love then, my children love them, they are so very good for you and we have a steady supply from our back garden chickens. We love eggs no matter how they are cooked but we do especially love them poached – hard boiled too but poached is the same but without the hassle of the shell and much easier to cook just how you like them (firm white and a slightly runny yellow please, thank you).

    However, I am rubbish, utter pants at poaching eggs with just a pan of boiling water – I’ve tried the create-a-hurricane trick and have wasted way too much vinegar – they never turn out right.

    I’ve also been resistant to getting a special egg poaching pan as it’s yet another item to be stored in my overstuffed kitchen cupboards. Besides, having a pan that does only one job just doesn’t sit right with me, I much prefer my kit to be multi-purpose. My Mum had a special poaching pan when I was small and it did do a great job but that was all it did. It’s probably the reason why me and my siblings love poached eggs so much.

    So, one day, I was sitting eating lunch (scrambled eggs if you must know) and casually leafing through the Lakeland catalogue – one of life’s smallest and simplest little pleasures indeed and what should leap off the page, bop me on the nose, causing me to dribble my scrambled eggs into my mug of tea – ick – but these whizzo, nifty, take-up-hardly-any-space Poachpods! I placed an order before a chicken could lay another egg.

    Genius, why-didn’t-I-think-to-invent-them things they are too – Poachpods – a little silicone pod for poaching an egg. Fill a decent sized saucepan with water, bring to the boil, reduce to simmer, pop in the fresh egg filled pod, put the lid on, wait 6-7 minutes (just enough time to make toast) and voila – a perfect every single time poached egg. For me, best served with a hot toasted buttey onion and chive bagel on the side.

    Poachpods are also available in a stainless steel non-stick variety….

    Stainless Steel Poachpod

    Stainless Steel Poachpod from Lakeland – £5.99

    They also have a handy Poachpod Lift gadget but if I’m honest, the pods aren’t tricky to fish out from the water with nimble fingers…

    Poachpod Lift

    Poachpod Lift from Lakeland – £2.99

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