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feel all bran new with kellogg's + giveaway!

this weekend was spent sorting out my new kitchen, getting used to a different oven and remembering what cupboard i'd put everything in. i didn't get time to make my latest granola recipe for the week, and so this new all bran cereal from kelloggs couldn't have come at a better time. 

the bluebell inn, rothley, leicestershire.

last week i headed off to the picturesque leicestershire village of rothley to meet up with two lovely foodies and bloggers alex and charlotte. it was a sunny evening so we sat outside and slurped on orange and lemonade whilst taking in the pretty exterior of the pub and browsing the menu. 

when i say browsing, two dishes had actually already jumped out at me whilst checking the bluebell inn menu out online; asparagus, spinach and fried duck egg on sour dough, with pan fried devilled scallops for main. i stuck to my guns and wasn't disappointed.

naturally fast food at leon.

there were a few firsts for my blog this weekend; the first time i'd been to a leon, reviewed fast food and been to a departure gate without jetting off somewhere sunny. for i was trying out the menu over at the newly opened restaurant and takeaway in east midlands airport. with my "imagine you're going on holiday but don't get too jealous that you're not" head on, i set about sampling the delights of naturally fast food. 

food doctor wholesome pots.

always on the look out for healthy lunch ideas and breakfast inspiration, i was super excited to be sent a selection of food doctor products recently. with a soft spot for their roasted soya beans, i knew i was in for a treat when i picked out these wholesome pots and some snazzy granola. 

an interview with ellie bee bakes.

for foodie tips and tricks, finding local (or faraway) gems and sharing recipes ideas, twitter can be a fabulous place to connect with like minded people. where else could you throw out the question "where can i go for afternoon tea in leicestershire?" and be met with a little list of lovely places, without anyone batting an eyelid. 

this brings me onto the great people i've met in the ever growing community of midlands foodies and food bloggers (other foodies you're amazing too, of course). one of the first was leicester based baker ellie of cake business ellie bee bakes - who creates brownies by post, bespoke biscuits for business, naked wedding cakes and hosts cupcake classes.

having been along to the leicester clandestine cake club and sampled her delicious bakes - i thought it was long overdue that i shared an interview with you about the girl behind the baking venture.

ginger nut granola.

i've been loving all kinds of granola in recent months, especially anything with honey, nuts and oats. even with the best nutty flavours i've found, there's always been some pesky dried fruit, raisins and sultanas lurking in there somewhere. so i thought, why not try out my own? 
with a self confessed sweet tooth, i wanted to create something which tasted sweet without a need to have sugar sprinkled on top. so with lots of nuts and seeds in there, i stirred in some stem ginger syrup for a zingy breakfast kick. 

olive it! recipe book giveaway.

a delicious ensemble of olive marinades and tapenades this beautiful recipe book will spark your imagination and show you how versatile and delicious olives can be. 

from innovative marinades to tantalizing tapas and tapenades, the simple and easy to follow book has something for everyone - irrespective of cooking ability - and for every season. this month you can win one of five olive it! recipe books packed with delectable recipes. 

cappuccino macarons.

after the macaron masterclass i went to last month, i couldn't wait to try my hand at some homemade macarons whilst the tips and tricks were still fresh in my mind. as i had some sugar and crumbs coffee flavoured icing sugar left over, an idea sprung to mind for some cappuccino macarons filled with expresso creme patissiere. 

nife is life: authentic italian produce to your door.

Stroll down the aisles packed with parmigiano reggiano and brimming with balsamic vinegar, Simply add to your shopping bag and await your Italian treasures. No you're not in a Tuscan deli or a Venetian wine shop, for this is nife is life. From pasta flour to prosciutto, this fantastic Italian delivery service stocks sweet, savoury, fresh and dry ingredients all in one place. 

spinach and ricotta ravioli in sage butter sauce.

inspired by my travels to malta, i wanted to get back into making pasta again with my trusty pasta machine; possibly the best christmas present my grandparents have ever bought me. in a sicilian bistro called la giara, i had a delicious course of homemade fresh ravioli filled with ricotta and spinach, then drizzled with an earthy sage sauce. so here is my take on the recipe! 

malta: foodie round up part two.

following on from my malta foodie round up part one, i bring you more photographs of food, views and food with views from my stay. above are pictures of marsaxlokk fishing village and st. peter's pool, which we visited in the same day. 

the natural pool is off the beaten track with a thirty minute cliff walk... but so worth it. in all those little craters there was heaps of natural salt too, which i went and bought from a local shop to use in my cooking back home. as you can see the fresh seafood was such a great price, yet was probably the freshest fish i've ever had the joy of eating.

malta: foodie round up part one.

a breathtaking combination of stunning scenery, an abundance of history, untouched natural beauty and, what's more, absolutely fantastic food. 

last month we spent a week in the merisi suites of valletta and the whole country totally exceeded my expectations. reminding me why i should conquer my fear of flying and explore the world, i already can't wait to return to malta and the neighbouring mediterranean islands. 

so i thought i'd put together a little round up - although it spans over two posts - of the foodie places we enjoyed during our stay. if you don't like pasta, pizza or seafood, look away now.