After surviving the long chilly January month, I thought it was time for a visit to Borough Market. This is one of my favourite foodie venues. I always like to try and share the French comte toasted sani, quite rich but such a treat and the best toasted cheese sandwich you will taste! Followed by Richard Haward’s oysters, these are truly the best oysters you will find in London. It is a family based business and they are farmed around the creeks of Mersea Island, Essex.
After picking up some fresh veggies for the forthcoming week and delicious cheeses with rosemary & garlic bread, I was all set for a sharing board to stay in later that evening.
Was truly spoilt for Valentine’s Day! I just love white flowers, so instead of the traditional red roses, was presented with 12 white roses, which looked stunning. My partner surprised me with a hotel stay over in Greenwich, a great part of London and went to The Guildford Arms, which was awarded best dining pub of the year 2018 for a wonderful gastronomical menu.
It was my friend Cindy’s big birthday, so I made her a triple layer chocolate cake smothered in ganache icing to celebrate! What a party with cake and fizz !
My girlfriend, Jen came over who is vegetarian, I had the opportunity to try out some new Indian dishes as I know she loves Indian food. I made coconut lentil dahl from Melissa Hemsley who I follow and always has inspiring healthy recipes, and a filo pastry samosa pie of potato, squash & peas.
It seems like we had a mini heat wave in February, how amazing was that! But I have been a little under the weather with a chest infection so I do not believe in working out when your body is trying to fight a virus. Just been taking a few walks along the river in Chiswick and around Chiswick House to make the most of the winter sun. I have been consuming lots of green smoothies and kefir to boost my immune system, along with my favourite sunshine shot, a cocktail of freshly squeezed orange juice, dash of lemon juice, grated fresh turmeric and grated fresh ginger. Its strong and zingy but I love it and its such a good tonic ! Also having a few sneaky relaxes in my garden and noticed the snowdrops are out, which I planted last year around the tree trunk, how gorgeous they look in the sunlight in February!
Wow, lots of courses getting booked up, as I sold KitchenJoy Gift Vouchers over the Christmas period, and now they are all coming through.
Launched a new course of anti-ageing skin nutrition and also ran another Vegan + No sugar course too.
I have a partnership with As Nature Intended (ANI) which means KitchenJoy advertising ANI’s organic raw ingredients which I use to demonstrate a couple of dishes at their Chiswick store. This was a tasting demo of roasted carrot hummus and chocolate beetroot brownies, both prepared earlier in my cookery school. It is a great way of marketing for KitchenJoy and also promoting the school locally, as ANI are only a few minutes away on Chiswick High Road.
The second event was a live demo at ANI’s flagship store in Marble Arch, ticketed sales to a live audience where I demonstrated pea, za’atar & feta fritters, plus courgette kofta’s in coconut sauce. I partnered with Jackie Lynch, a nutritionist & we have worked together on some courses at KitchenJoy in 2018 and plan more this coming year. This combination works well, as while I am cooking, Jackie will be giving in depth discussions on the nutritional value of each food type. The audience then sample the foods that have been cooked.
Not on the High Street (NOTHS) came along to KitchenJoy to see what we were made of and to finalise our partnership which is very exciting! I will now be featured in their “experiences” food section on line and already this month some NOTHS customers have bought KitchenJoy vouchers! Bring it on……
And last but not least, a leading city law firm has nominated me as a panelist of 3, for Women’s International Day on 7th March. This is beyond exciting and have been busy prepping some KitchenJoy breakfast recipes to showcase to the audience of 70. . I am planning two different types of breakfast muffins and some energy balls. A conference call was booked to discuss KitchenJoy challenges and motivation for the upcoming event.
Just made the most delicious dessert on vegan cookery class, a sticky toffee pear pudding where the pears are inserted into the wet sponge standing up, looks very impressive when it comes out of the oven with the pears sticking out!
Onto other desserts, I made sweet potato brownies on the No Sugar course, a healthy brownie that also features a vegetable. A superfood vegetable that’s a major source of vitamin C. I know sounds too good to be true. They were seriously indulgent, rich and fudgy and slightly firm inside but still quite gooey. A healthy brownie recipe without the sugar rush. Hello, Sweet Potato Brownies!
Had a private birthday party for 8 girlies, was such fun! It was the same format as the standard KitchenJoy cookery classes, being interactive but they brought their own wine. We made a chicken tagine, which has no added oil and the aubergines are marinated and cooked in soy sauce, with lots of yummy ingredients such as dates which make this dish very tasty. It is from the Happy Pear twins book, take a peak !
I just LOVE listening to my podcasts whilst trying out new recipes for the cookery classes and Russell Brand was interviewing the Happy Pear boys which really is worth listening to, from their childhood & travels, to setting up their dream business, very inspirational and funny!
It was great to launch the anti-ageing skin nutrition course starting with a glowing skin smoothie as per the photo above and recipe below. Avocado is high in fatty acids for moisturising the skin and mango rich in beta carotene - a wonderful source of skin healing anti -oxidants and flax seeds for their omega 3 benefits to minimise rashes, skin irritation and inflammation.
Here is the recipe for the smoothie:
Glowing skin smoothie
200ml almond milk
Few spinach leaves
1 tbsp flax seeds
1 tbsp maca powder
Few brazil nuts
Place all ingredients in a blender, pour and enjoy!