Archive For December 2018

The Plough Inn – dining

The Plough Inn – dining

The Plough Inn is a little stunner. It offers beautiful rooms for the few who are lucky enough to stay, and a traditional bar and restaurant for resident guests and locals. The concept is smart casual and the food is polished. My perfect combination. One sits amid a riot of mismatched tables and chairs. The…

Read more »

Thai Taste Green Curry and a competition

Thai Taste Green Curry and a competition

Thai cuisine is popular all over the world and it’s easy to see why.  It is a tempting and vibrant blend of spicy, salty, bitter, sour and sweet flavours which create a tapestry of taste. The company, Thai Taste, offers kits to make some classic dishes with all those delicious elements. These Thai Taste kits…

Read more »

Clase Azul Reposado Tequila

Clase Azul Reposado Tequila

Handmade and individually painted, each bottle of Clase Azul is a unique and charming work of ceramic art. In the small Mexican town of Santa Maria Canchesda, over 100 artisans are employed just to produce these trade-mark bottles. The beautifully handcrafted flasks of Clase Azul are statuesque and are indeed meant to be kept and…

Read more »

Holdsworth House Halifax – stay

Holdsworth House Halifax – stay

This is a jewel of a hotel, and there can surely be no better time to visit Holdsworth House Hotel than during those weeks just before Christmas. The building lends itself to traditional decorations and colour, giving a nod to gentler times, warmth and conviviality. Truthfully, Holdsworth House Hotel is a marvel at any time…

Read more »

Hayman’s Sloe Gin – review

Hayman’s Sloe Gin – review

Hayman’s Sloe Gin is a classic with the fresh fruitiness of the autumn. This plum-coloured gin displays great balance on the palate with gin at its centre, but being neither too sweet nor too tart. The berries are macerated for several months to allow the characteristic flavours to infuse. This well-crafted Sloe Gin is perfect…

Read more »

Gousto King Prawn Linguine

Gousto King Prawn Linguine

The Simple King Prawn, Garlic and Chilli Linguine recipe from Gousto makes a rather classy dish. It’s perfect for a family dinner for 4 very hungry folks (recipes for 2 are available as well). It would even work as a starter for 6, as these portions are generous. Who are Gousto and why be interested…

Read more »

Winter Edition of Timeless Travels

Winter Edition of Timeless Travels

It’s the end of the year and one’s mind turns to armchair travel! Snuggle up with the Winter Edition of Timeless Travels. In this gorgeous winter issue you can visit the fascinating Easter Island with its enigmatic stone statues, spend a weekend in Quito or discover the charming town of Haarlem in the Netherlands. You…

Read more »

Monsigny Brut Champagne from Aldi

Monsigny Brut Champagne from Aldi

It’s the Festive Season and thoughts turn to fizz. Supermarket shelves are filled with bottles of sparkling wine from Europe and the New World. Let us not be wine snobs, dear reader! There are a great many very good Cavas and Proseccos out there, and even some ‘sparkling wine of mixed origin’, to tempt both…

Read more »

Rosa’s Thai Café – The Vegetarian Cookbook

Rosa’s Thai Café – The Vegetarian Cookbook

Rosa’s was the original name of an empty caff which Saiphin Moore and her husband turned into their first restaurant.  Saiphin is Thai and has been cooking professionally since she was just 14 years old. Thailand was where she learnt family recipes from her mum and aunties. She moved to Hong Kong and met Alex…

Read more »

Lancrigg Hotel – stay

Lancrigg Hotel – stay

Oh, deep joy! A hotel that thinks it’s a home. A house with guest rooms. A place to snuggle by the fire. A spot where kids are welcome. It’s called Lancrigg. This charming hotel is a delightful mix of contemporary art, comfy sofas and friendly conviviality. Wendy and her husband have only been the managers…

Read more »

Brockmans Gin – A cut above

Brockmans Gin – A cut above

Yes, it’s trending. Gin is ubiquitous in every bar throughout the nation. It is loved by young sippers who have irrevocably banished the dusty reputation of ‘Mother’s ruin’.  Gin is presented as a key component in every guise of cocktail, from fruity and floral to spicy and exotic. These often-colourful libations may mask a fairly…

Read more »

Burlington’s Restaurant – The Beech Hill Hotel

Burlington’s Restaurant – The Beech Hill Hotel

The Beech Hill Hotel is located on the eastern bank of Windermere. Its stunning views over the lake change with the seasons. Autumn is a quieter time and perfect for enjoying the rust and golden hues of the mellowing foliage and heather. This hotel can trace its history back to the 1900s. One can still…

Read more »

The ultimate kitchen thermometer

The ultimate kitchen thermometer

Professional Secrets have the ultimate kitchen thermometer and it’s just the perfect time of year when such a thing will be most appreciated. Think of that Christmas Turkey and how good it can be …and how bad it can be. I confess! For years I never felt the need to use a kitchen thermometer. I…

Read more »

Figgy’s Christmas Pudding

Figgy’s Christmas Pudding

There can be nothing more iconic at Christmas than the pudding. One might argue that the turkey should have that festive accolade, but let us consider the history of Christmas dinner. Queen Victoria celebrated Christmas with enthusiasm, and her husband Prince Albert introduced German Christmas trees. Charles Dickens was also instrumental in creating the vision…

Read more »

The Plough Inn – to stay

The Plough Inn – to stay

The Plough in the hamlet of Lupton was built around 1760 but the welcome to this historic pub is contemporary and artful. There is a horse outside, but this is a rather ghostly plough-horse in metal, giving a nod to its rural location and its stylish interior. The pub has recently undergone extensive renovations to…

Read more »