Last week, I got a spiralizer. I am well aware that they were all the rage last year, but I sort of dismissed them along with the so-called clean eating gurus who were flogging them. I didn’t buy into their crazy rhetoric that such a thing as courgetti could replace such a thing as spaghetti, so I sure as hell wasn’t going to buy the gadget! Yeah, the name works but the taste, texture and overall enjoyment? No thanks. I’m an inclusive eater, no one food group gets cut out in favour of another in my diet… we’re all one happy (mostly) balanced family in my tummy. However in the name of research, I’ve decided to give the courgetti or the zoodles a go, but only alongside rather than instead of their carb friends!
The good thing about jumping on a trend so late is that lots of people have already outlined the pros and cons of each of the main types of spiralizer. The one that’s like a giant pencil sharpener is as silly as it sounds and should be avoided at all costs, but the horizontal and vertical ones (depending on which way the vegetable goes through the slicing process) are much of a muchness. I’ve got a horizontal one which seems to be the most common; it was even the version of choice by two well-known spiralizing sister… mines exactly like theirs minus the branding and the huge mark up!
I am the proud owner of a very, very well stocked freezer. That’s probably not the coolest (pun totally intended to add to said coolness) or most glamorous thing to admit but such is real life. And in my life, a well stocked freezer is one key to eternal home happiness. Ridicule me all you like but you know who will be having the last laugh? Me, with my belly-warming bowl of homemade dumplings and broth, ready in just ten minutes. Me, diving into my oxtail stash for a Sunday stew, saving myself the trolley battles in the Sunday supermarket swarms. Or me, wading through my ice cream options for dessert just because I can.
Every freezer should have at least one type of ice cream, but in a well stocked freezer like mine, one is never enough. Oh no, that would be a disgrace! Our current situation involves two staples – a tub of top notch vanilla (because it goes with everything, duh) and a selection of mini Magnums (because I can be sensible in my indulgence), and a new entry… a delectable array of ice creams and sorbets from Simply Ice Cream! When I say there’s something sweet for everyone in that bottom freezer drawer, I really mean it.
We like to pretend we’re tea connoisseurs with our hodge-podge selection of black tea, white tea, green tea, fruit teas and the like, all in a mix of loose leaf and bags of all shapes and sizes, but really, we’re just tea addicts. We barely go a couple of hours without a cuppa; part habit, part dependency (for one of us anyway) but always for the pure enjoyment of drinking it! My point is, we drink a lot of tea so it was a pleasant surprise to come across something we’d never tried before.
Of course matcha tea isn’t exactly a new thing, I’m sure the Chinese and Japanese have been drinking it for centuries, and more recently its popularity has exploded. I have seen tea enthusiasts and health nuts alike sharing photos of pretty ceramic bowls filled with bright green tea, lightly frothed to perfection with a strange whisk-type utensil, but admittedly I’ve been too comfortable with my builder’s brew or refreshing jasmine to get involved in such shenanigans.
I have taken my current Korean food obsession to a new level. No longer content with satisfying my cravings whilst eating out, I somehow managed to convince myself to recreate some Korean dishes at home. Bearing in mind I’ve only just discovered this cuisine in the last few years and can barely pronounce some of the ingredients, let alone actually know what they are, this was definitely a step outside the comfort zone. The results? Mixed. And a little bit stinky…
Road trippin’ with my two favourite allies… Fully loaded we got snacks and supplies… it’s time to leave this town, it’s time to steal away… Let’s go get lost, anywhere in the USA…
Or anywhere for that matter, because I love a road trip, and that Red Hot Chili Peppers track. Anyone else a fan? I remember blasting it out from my zippy little Nissan hatchback as I was (very safely) hooning around the streets of Wellington and cruising up the North Island on one of my frequent road trips with my bestie. We’d often pop up to Auckland on one of our university term breaks for a spot of shopping and change of scene, and that track would always be on the road trip CD… yes, that was really back in the day when CDs were still used!
I cannot keep up with all these subscription boxes. Every week I hear about a new type of box; artisan snack box, beauty box, stationery box… have you been lured in by a box yet? I can understand how they caught you: the element of surprise in the contents, the excitement of getting real mail, and well… just the plain joy of getting new stuff. It also helps that they’re usually cleverly priced so you won’t begrudge that £10 to £20 disappearing from your bank account every month. But do the contents of these subscription boxes really live up to the hype?
Even after seeing a million and one reviews of all sorts of boxes, I wasn’t entirely sure… seriously, how many types of fancy crisp brands are there in the UK and who really needs a new silicon cake mould every month?! But recently I had to eat my words; literally and quite happily. So let me tell you all about this box… don’t worry, there won’t be a video of me opening it, I find those about as awkward as watching someone pretending to love the present their loopy aunt just gave them!
I am in present buying panic mode; not only do I have no idea what to get my darling family for Christmas this year, I’ve got to send if off by Thursday otherwise Royal Mail dare not guarantee it gets to New Zealand before Santa does. Oh December, how did you become so sneaky and just creep up on me like this? At least for a certain someone’s gift I can still do what I usually do… go on a mad shopping frenzy the week leading up to Christmas but this doesn’t work when your family are on the other side of the world!
So, what does one buy the parents who insist they ‘want nothing’ but really, really want something, and that something better not be socks or hand cream? Or the sister who for the last year has been basking in the newly moneyed glory of being a fully fledged career woman and enjoying all the disposable income perks that come with it? Or even harder still… the much cooler younger ‘bro’ who is about to enter university with all the confidence in the world?