Category Archives: Lifestyle

The Hague – The Japanese Garden in Autumn

I arrived back home on Monday morning and because it was a lovely autumn day we decided to make the most of the good weather to visit the Japanese Garden in The Hague. Based in Clingendael Park, the Japanese Gardens are only open to the public twice a year, during spring and autumn; from May to mid June and then again the last two weeks in October.

The Japanese Gardens are pretty magnificent and were actually placed on the list of national historical monuments in 2001. I’d visited the garden years ago in Spring but never before had I seen it in it’s autumn splendour. Here some photos of the gardens, don’t you just love all the autumn colours?

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Wearing: Black waxed jeans – ZARA // Burgundy V-Neck Knit – H&M // Camel Coat – MANGO (old) // Grey and silver snood scarf – H&M // Tortoise Wallace Sunglasses – Bailey Nelson // New Balance 420 Burgunday & Grey (Link) Am looooooving my new kicks, they are so perfect for fall and winter and are super comfy!

After visiting the gardens (admission free) we wondered for a bit longer through Clingendael Park to soak up even more autumn beautifullness…

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It was a lovely afternoon and am glad we did it that day because it’s pretty much not stopped raining in Holland since that day. Ha but have to say, I still love autumn. Do you?

  
Leave a comment | Posted in Fashion, Lifestyle, Photography, Travel

Homemade Sausage Rolls

C’mon everyone loves a good sausage roll from time to time right? However they seem to have a bit of a cheap, bland and old fashioned reputation these days. Which is a shame, because I actually think they are a fantastic party food treat. Now, I am talking homemade sausage rolls and not ones bought from your local supermarket! I know you’re probably thinking, gosh making sausage rolls sounds like such a faff, but trust me it’s super simple to prepare and you’ll be impressed with these tasty bites – and so will your guests.

To make homemade sausage rolls all you really need is two main ingredients; puff pastry and the sausage of your choice, plus about 10 minutes of preparation time and voila! I personally really like using pork in my sausage rolls, especially Spanish Chorizo because I think the spiciness adds a modern punch to them! For a friends’ party recently I made two kinds of sausage rolls; one using Chorizo and one using Pork & Apple sausages. They both went down a treat and were gone in a matter of seconds! Check out the super simple recipes below..

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Chorizo & Fennel Sausage Rolls

  • Chorizo Sausage (uncooked)
  • Pre-made Puff Pastry (Super handy this stuff! You can buy it frozen or fresh, Ensure you de-frost the pastry before using if bought frozen)
  • 1x Egg, slightly beaten
  • Fennel Seeds

Pork & Apple  Sausage Rolls with Fennel and Paprika

  • Pork and Apple sausages (I used M&S Pork and Bramley Apple ones) but any other sausage of your choice would be absolutely fine!
  • Pre-made Puff Pastry
  • 1x Egg, slightly beaten
  • Fennel Seeds
  • 1x tbsp Paprika spice

Method for both:

Preheat oven to 200C. Gently peel / cut the skin of your sausages. Take one sheet of puff pastry and place the chorizo or pork sausage meat along the long side and brush the beaten egg mixture next to it. With the simple pork sausages I would recommend sprinkling the sausage meat with some fennel seeds and paprika spice for some extra flavour, or feel free to experiment with any other spices and seeds you fancy!

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Now fold the pastry so one side aligns with the eggwashed line and cut along that line. Seal the edges with a fork, brush with eggwash and sprinkle with fennel seeds. Cut the roll into individual pieces and transfer the rolls on a parchment lined baking sheet. Then repeat the process with any remaining pastry and sausage. Bake at 200C for approximately 15 minutes or until golden and puffed. Serve (warm or cold) with tomato sausage, ketchup, BBQ sauce, or chilli sauce for dipping!

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Told you it was super easy and don’t they look delicious? Hope you like this recipe for my homemade sausage rolls and do let me know if it was a hit at your next party!

  
Leave a comment | Posted in Food, Lifestyle, Recipe

Swingers – A crazy golf club

Looking for something different to do on a night out in London? Fun going-out places where you can play ping pong, bowling, sing karaoke or go roller skating seem to be all the rage in London these days. And this winter there’s another fun option for you fun people out there; crazy golf!

Located in a 7,000 sq ft warehouse, Swingers London opened this month in the heart of Shoreditch and it contains a 9-hole crazy golf course plus two cocktail drenched Clubhouse bars, and a diner serving street-food from some of London’s most exciting vendors.

Me and a friend decided to check out this funky new hang out in London last week for a game of crazy golf, a few drinks and hopefully plenty of laughs.  Swingers is hidden away in a little street between Liverpool St and Shoreditch station and after trying to navigate our way there on a wet and windy evening we were glad to step inside the warehouse finding a warm, cozy and buzzling mini golf course!

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First up – drinks at the bar! At Swingers they have a DJ playing tunes every night until 12.30am to get you pumped plus a constantly rotating roster of street vendors to fuel your tummy before or after a game of crazy golf. We got some wines from the bar, and after a quick catch up headed to the start of the course to collect our score card and golf clubs.

The course itself – a sporting paradise of wood and plants will take around 45 minutes to complete and includes water features; extreme dog legs; tunnels; a bridge; a loop-the-loop; plus marshalls on hand to deliver you drinks (and give you handy tips) on the course. GAME ON!

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We had such a laugh making our way around the course, some holes going better than others. Overall we were both pretty happy with our scores; Me 29 – Chrissy 32. But really it wasn’t a competition (I won, I won!!) Sorry the competitiveness in me sneaked out for a second there haha ;) After the crazy golf ‘work-out’ we felt pretty hungry so we decided to check out the street vendors on offer that night; When Mac Met Cheese and Pizza Pilgrims.

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Pizza Pilgrims won and we ordered the Portobello+Truffle and Nduja pizzas, made fresh from their small street van complete with pizza oven! Can we have some extra truffle oil with that please, ooooommmmggggg…

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Best pizzas I’ve tasted in a little while! Aside from their street vans, which can often be found at food markets and festivals, Pizza Pilgrims also have two restaurants near Soho. I’ve been to the one on Dean Street and can definitely recommend a visit!

We had a great night at Swingers and I also think it would be a perfect place to go on a date; have a few drinks, enjoy some delicious food and play crazy golf to break any possible date awkwardness (plus it gives the guy, or you for that matter, a chance to show off his sporting abilities haha).

There are two ways to buy tickets for Swingers:
1. Advance golf tickets – which you can buy online £10 // These tickets allow you to buy your entry (£3) and golf (£8) in advance and get a £1 early-bird discount!
2. Ground passes – which can buy in advance online, or on the night £3 // Swingers isn’t just for people who want to play crazy-golf. You can come to soak up the fun atmospthere, for good times and yummy food, plus if you change your mind or get tempted by the course, they do hold back golf tickets every night for walk-ups.
For more detailed booking information click HERE.

Swingers
7-11 Hearn Street (Off Curtain Road)
London EC2A 3LS
http://swingersldn.co.uk
Twitter: @SwingersLDN

Swingers will be around for just three months (until the 20th December) and is open Wednesday to Saturday from 6pm until 12.30am. So book now to ensure you don’t miss out!

  
Leave a comment | Posted in Food, Lifestyle, London

Lucky 7 Diner in Notting Hill

Burgers are quite the it concept in the restaurant and foodie industry at the moment. Diners, burger joints and street stalls have pretty much popped up all over London in the last few years. However one burger place that’s had a cult following for years is the Lucky 7 Diner in Notting Hill.

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Lucky 7 Diner part of Tom Conran’s restaurant empire, with the others being Crazy Homies (one of my favourite mexican places), gastropub The Cow and Tom’s Deli – all of which are located in Notting Hill. Lucky 7 is a great little diner that’s actually very authentic to how they are in the USA. It’s pretty tiny and only has 6 booths, each seats around 4-6 so that means you will need to share if you are 2 or 3 people. They are known for their great American- style breakfasts (by that I mean delicious pancakes and huevos rancheros) plus their kick-ass 100% Aberdeen Angus Burgers!

Here some pictures from a recent (late night) visit to Lucky 7 after a few too many drinks at the Westbourne! We’d had a friends leaving drinks at the pub and decided we really needed food and by that I mean of the greasy kind ;) I got the Kalifornian Burger which comes with bacon, cheese, roasted tomato and sour cream. Plus lots of sweet potato fries of course. And ohmigosh it definitely hit the spot….

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Oh and while you’re there,  definitely do check out their milkshakes, which can also be ordered “super thick’ and with extras such as peanut butter and oreo cookies blitzed in!! Ahhh dreaming of a peanut butter milkshake now, damn ;)

Lucky 7 Diner is a proper American looking and tasting  diner in the heart of Notting Hill and I recommend a visit for either breakfast and/or dinner! Plus it is conveniently situated right next to Crazy Homies. So after you finish your burger, you can stop by next door for some super strong margaritas?

Lucky 7 Diner
127 Westbourne Park Road
London, W2 5QL
Phone: 020 7727 6771
www.lucky7london.co.uk

  
1 Comment | Posted in Food, Lifestyle, London, Restaurants

How do you like them apples?

“Will: Do you like apples?
Clark: Yeah.
Will: Well, I got her number. How do you like them apples?”

Haha I love that line from the movie Good Will Hunting! Any-hoo on the subject of apples, this Sunday me and some friends headed out of London for the day for something a little different. Turns out that in October many Apple orchards in the UK celebrate Apple Day – and at Pippins Farm, which is near Tunbridge Wells in Kent, they were holding an open farm event in association with Hospice in the Weald. One of my friends actually knows the owners of this orchard and she had organised a fun day out for us to tour the apple orchard, drink ciders, feast on a hog roast & toffee apples and to  play some fun apple games.  Here are some photos of our day out at Pippins Farm Orchard…

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It was so nice to escape the city to do something completely different for a change on a Sunday! The food was delicious and after a few too many few ciders we frolicked around the apple orchard like crazy people! But oh what fun we had & I love these silly but extremely wonderful people. How do you like them apples? ;)

  
Leave a comment | Posted in Lifestyle, My life, Photography, Travel