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nutella and kahlua hot chocolate.

nutella and kahlua hot chocolate

A cosy Christmas drink featuring some of my favourite flavours; Nutella and coffee. Combining the perfect aromas of Kahlua coffee liqueur with indulgent chocolate and whipped cream, this is a real festive crowdpleaser. Top it off with a swirl of cream, edible glitter and a candy cane for and extra Christmassy touch. Divine!

nutella and kahlua hot chocolate recipe

parmesan rosti and poached eggs. (+ hamper giveaway)

I love a good brunch, especially on a lazy Winter weekend. So what better time than Christmas to plan an indulgent breakfast with a piping hot coffee and fresh orange juice. This homemade parmesan rosti recipe is made with Parmigiano Reggiano; a hard Italian cheese with a slightly salty, fruity and nutty aroma. It's perfect for adding a hint of something extra to a crisp potato rosti, which is perfectly complemented by an inviting poached egg with bright, runny yolk. 

Parmigiano Reggiano is a PDO product, exclusively produced in Parma, Modena and Reggio Emilia, on the plains, hills and mountains enclosed between the rivers Po and Reno. With nine centuries of excellence, the Parmigiano Reggiano is aged for its beautiful taste and distinctive crystals. It's delicious just sliced off and sampled on its own, but it really works for this recipe too. 

I've teamed with Parmigiano Reggiano to host a special Christmas hamper giveaway. Scroll down to read the recipe and how you could be in with a chance of winning...

how to create the ultimate cheeseboard: video.

A strong cheddar, a creamy blue, a crumbly white; everyone has their favourite cheese. Cheeseboards can be pretty personal too. I love a smoked cheese or a rich Brie, as well as dunking warm bread into freshly baked Camembert. It's true Christmas isn't complete without a cheeseboard. And since you might have guests coming over to share it (whilst we all wouldn't mind a cheeseboard to ourselves), I've created what I think is the best cheeseboard spread to give you a few ideas.

Scroll on for the video as well as details of the beautiful cheese on offer this year at Central England Cooperative...

parmesan cheese scones with parmesan butter and cranberry sauce. (+ hamper giveaway)

Parmesan Cheese Scones

Perfect for lunch, a festive spread or as part of a savoury afternoon tea, a warm plate of fresh cheese scones are always a welcome addition. This scone recipe in particular premium twist with a hint of festive cheer in the form of luxury Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, Parmigiano Reggiano infused butter and sweet and tangy cranberry sauce.

One of the world’s oldest and richest cheeses, its no surprise this PDO cheese is often referred to as the King of Cheeses. A hard Italian cheese, Parmigiano Reggiano, sometimes referred to in the UK as parmesan cheese, is still produced today as it was nine centuries ago. With a very special make-up and recipe, the product is only be allowed to be made in particular areas of Italy, with specially selected dairies and producers of the highest quality. This makes it a real treat all year round, but especially in the festive season when it's time to indulge in some delicious cheese.

In fact, I've teamed with Parmigiano Reggiano to host a special Christmas hamper giveaway. Scroll down to read the recipe and how you could win...

mince pie christmas freak shake.

Mince Pie Freak Shake

It's beginning to look like... I want to eat all the Christmas food. This creamy, cinnamon spiced, chocolately Christmas freak shake is the most inviting treat to enjoy whilst watching those festive films. Whizzed up mince pie is met with a good quality ice cream, milk, cinnamon and cocoa powder before being stacked with mini mince pies and striped candy canes. Indulgent! Do you think you could devour this mince pie freak shake? Go on... I challenge you. It's Christmas, after all.

Mince Pie Freak Shake Recipe

walnut and white chocolate spiced cookies.

walnut and white chocolate spiced cookies

These colder days are giving me the urge to bake. And the cosy evenings with blankets and candles are making me want to eat sweet treats with a cuppa or hot chocolate. So the temptation to whip up a fresh batch of cookies, when they only need cupboard essentials and less than 30 minutes is strong. This spiced cookie recipe has a delicious and warming base, with sweet half melted white chocolate against crunchy walnuts. Dreamy!

walnut and white chocolate spiced cookie recipe

aubergine, paneer & sweet red pepper curry.


A super easy curry to make-ahead as a midweek meal, or simmer away on a weekend. This medium spiced vegetarian curry doesn't really have an origin as such. I was influenced by Indian and Thai flavours but on the whole it's pretty made up - why not eh! With a tomato base, the paneer and deliciously softened vegetables are flavoured with the likes of lime, red chillies, ginger, garam masala and fresh coriander. The dish is finished off with a crunch of peanuts and extra lime juice. I ate it with chopsticks just because it made the paneer fun to skewer, but there really are no rules here. If you're a fan of tikka masala and red Thai curries, you might just like this too.


reece's peanut butter cup macarons.

reece's peanut butter cup macarons

Some tasty little macarons made to taste just like your favourite peanut butter treat. Creating a Reece's Peanut Butter Cup style buttercream, which tastes like chocolate peanut butter, I've made some mini Reece's inspired macarons. Good luck trying not to eat the frosting right out the bowl... believe me it will be worth it.

reece's peanut butter macarons
reece's macarons recipe

my ultimate comfort bolognese.

A comforting Italian inspired bolognese recipe, ideal to batch cook for an easy midweek meal. Combining pork and beef mince, this hearty recipe goes towards your five a day with sweet, softened red peppers and slightly salty black olives. Serve up with your favourite pasta and a good grating of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese. Though for me it has to be spaghetti. Classic.

pumpkin spiced baked doughnuts.

HELLO AUTUMN! Anyone else as excited as me? Shame about the lack of Summer and that. But now it's October I'm truly embracing being an Autumn baby and getting involved with ALL of the Autumn leaves, cosy accessories and obviously a million PSLs. (Pumpkin spiced lattes, by the way). Over on my Instagram I couldn't resist a Boomerang throwing up some leaves and sharing my newest scented candle. So are you surprised I've been baking pumpkin spiced everything too? First in line are these heavenly pumpkin spiced baked doughnuts. Think cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg with a topping of maple sweetened pecans and syrup. But I can't promise I'm stopping here...

homemade sweet chilli salmon fishcakes with poached egg, smashed avocado and tomato and chilli chutney.

We all love brunch these days, don’t we? With menus packed to the brim with smashed avocado, delicate smoked salmon and scrambled tofu, there really is everything for everyone, specifically between the hours of 10am-12pm. For me, I’m a real seafood and fish lover, often opting for the likes of Egg Royale, smoked kippers and spicy kedgeree.

Recently, I was lucky enough to be invited to the sauciest of brunches for seafood fans, hosted by The Saucy Fish Co. With four courses of delectable dishes to show of their seafood selections, I really was in my element, in particular the Lime and Coriander Salmon Breakfast Wrap and Smoked Haddock Kedgeree with Cheddar and Chive Sauce. 

Inspired to create my own brunch at home, I’ve used the Saucy Fish Sweet Chilli Salmon Fillets with Tomato and Chilli Chutney to create a stacked up breakfast treat with fresh avocado and a runny poached egg. Plus, the panko breadcrumbs and sesame seeds give that extra texture and crunch. How do you have yours?

taking on the lunch time challenge with weight watchers.

Did you know 1 in 3 of us eating the same lunch every day? I'm definitely a creature of habit when it hits midday. I may get creative in the kitchen, go out for Instagram-able dinners and seek out beautiful brunches on the weekend and evenings, but in the office I'm definitely more al desko than fresco.

Jacket potatoes are my vice. And although I get creative with the toppings, I have them at least three times a week. I'm also pretty good with leftovers and sometimes do prep ahead some healthy alternatives in my bento lunch boxes. Most of the time though, I can feel pretty uninspired and could do with some serious office lunch inspo.

When Weight Watchers got in touch with their #WWLunchTimeChallenge I couldn't wait to to shake up lunchtimes, swapping standard sandwiches for something new from their chilled prepared meals range. So what was on the menu?

Spicy Mac & Meatballs 
Red Thai Curry and Sticky Jasmine Rice 
Lincolnshire Sausage and Root Vegetable Mash 
Hearty Cottage Pie 
Chilli Con Carne and Potato Wedges

All of their meals are low in sugar, less than 400 calories and contain no artificial colours, flavours or preservatives. From British favourite Chicken Tikka Masala to Italian inspired Bolognese Al Forno, there really is something for everyone. Developed by their chefs in conjunction with nutritional experts, their meals are designed for the time poor who are looking for a healthy option come lunch time.

First up is the Spicy Mac & Meatballs, which incidentally ended up being my favourite. A real kick of chilli met with macaroni and juicy meatballs made this a real treat. Mixing pasta, meatballs and Mexican flavours, what's not to like?

Comfort food for under 300 calories? You can't go wrong the Lincolnshire Sausage and Root Vegetable Mash. The heartwarming root veg mash with a hint of mustard was a great alternative to regular potato. Whilst the sausages were tasty and chunky whilst still being lean and delicately seasoned. I think this will be a favourite in the aisles for the Autumn months.

Another dish set to be a crowdpleaser is their Chilli Con Carne and Potato Wedges. Seasoned with 
oregano, coriander, cumin, smoked paprika and black pepper, this was a very warm and welcome lunch for a cold day. You could even add some coriander, a sprinkle of strong cheese and some low fat yoghurt for a low calorie Mexican treat.

So whether you're looking for comfort food, a fakeaway or to shake up your own lunch hour, the latest Weight Watchers range is definitely something to watch out for.  Unlike fad diets and quick fixes, Weight Watchers are proud to provide a flexible and balanced approach to leading a healthier lifestyle without giving up the things you love. As a real foodie, I can confirm that their flavours are great and definitely didn't feel like a low calorie option. 

Will you be forfeiting that fifth cheese sandwich and giving them go? Find them online or in the chilled aisle of leading supermarkets, from around £2 a pack. 

In collaboration with Weight Watchers

quick and easy homemade pastrami.

With lots of Autumnal and Thanksgiving inspiration making me drool over on Instagram, I thought it was about time I shared this homemade pastrami recipe with you. Of course, usually a labour of love, pastrami recipes often take hours, even days to create. The brine, curing process and smoking can be a lengthy process with delicious results. On this occasion I thought I'd try out a simple, speedy recipe. It will still take an afternoon, but means you can be indulging in that homemade pastrami sandwich with all the trimmings on the very same day. What do you think?

crispy m&m brownie cheesecake.

What do you get when you mix a gooey brownie base, lashings of cream cheese frosting, a swirl of chocolate spread and a rainbow of crispy coated sweets? A birthday brownie cheesecake that's almost too good to share. Sandwiched between an extra layer of M&M crispy chocolate spread and finished with the crispy M&Ms themselves, this is the perfect balance of indulgence and a colourful teatime treat. It's super simple to make too - so scroll on for the next delicious dessert recipe you need to master!

mexican style cauliflower steaks.

Mexican cauliflower steak recipe

Cauliflower really is the ingredient of the moment. Gluten free rice, vegan steak and wheat free pizza base - so much more than the classic cauliflower cheese (also delicious). So I thought I'd give the meat free trend a try with this dairy free, vegan friendly take on steak. I was really pleased with the results; a versatile texture with crunchy and crispy edges. I created a Mexican twist on it, since what doesn't go well with salsa, tortillas, chilli and heaps of guacamole. 

Vegan cauliflower steak recipe

a summer of delicious discounts at highcross, leicester.

If you're a regular at Leicester 's Highcross are planning a visit... you're in for a tasty treat. From now until 19th August, the Highcross restaurants, cafes and bars will be hosting a Summer of Delicious Discounts. So if you're ravenous for ramen or have a serious sweet tooth, you could find your favourite foodie haunts at Highcross now have a delicious discount too. You just need to download the Highcross PLUS app to find out more. And in case you were wondering what was on offer, I've been down to test drive their most mouthwatering starters, mains, desserts and drinks... You're welcome.

cherry, lemon and pistachio shortbread.

Cherry pistachio lemon shortbread recipe

Inspired by Summer, this lovely and light shortbread recipe is made up of fresh cherries, crushed pistachio and zesty lemon. Bringing together sweet, tart and nutty flavours makes this an easy, make-ahead dessert that wouldn't look out of place at a family BBQ, packed up in a picnic or as an easy dinner party dessert. The Picota Cherries especially bring a sweetness and depth to this homemade shortbread, which is offset by the contrasting ingredients.

Hailing from the beautiful Spanish valley of Jerte, 200km west of Madrid, signature stemless Picota Cherries follow a natural blossom and harvest season. This means that every day the arrival of the deliciously sweet cherries is different - for 2018 it's July and August. You can now get them in Tesco, Sainsbury's, Morrison's and Aldi from July - but be quick, they may only be around for another month or so.

You can also be in a chance of winning a picnic hamper with Jerte Picota Cherries! Each hamper includes two delicious punnets of cherries, a bottle of Cava, flutes, a cherry pitter and napkins. Scroll down for the granita recipe, as well as to find out how to enter...

Cherry pistachio lemon shortbread recipe
Cherry pistachio lemon shortbread

pizzastorm, nottingham.

Your pizza, your way. That's the philosophy of recently opened PizzaStorm in Nottingham city centre. With the likes of mozzarella balls to meatballs and butternut squash to baby spinach, they're pretty proud of their create your own pizzas. Mix and match a drizzle of sauce with your favourite toppings, scattered on their in house sour dough bases. Or if you aren't in a decision making mood, they've put together some classic pizza options to get the pizza party started.

Vegan, vegetarian and meat options mean that they cater for a variety of dietary requirements too. The main thing is that you love pizza. Who doesn't, right? Their Vegetable Supreme is loaded with tomatoes, mushrooms, sweetcorn, peppers, courgetti and an option for vegan cheese, with dairy free flatbread on offer too. Whilst the Decadence is made up of white sauce, mozzarella, regatta, tomatoes, spinach, red onion, spicy beef and rocket. Delicious!

We went along to try their bottomless pizza offering Pizza Fest, which is on every Sunday for £9.50 a head. As a group of four with two vegans in tow, it was the perfect pizza test. But how did they fare?