Monthly Archives: July 2014

Little towelling dress, a great buy

This is an absolutely brilliant toweling dress that comes in blue or white (I have it in blue). It zips all up the front and has a draw-string and a hood and short sleeves.

It’s perfect for putting on after a swim/on the beach. (I’d always envied children their toweling cover ups.) Because I am not tall, the style fits me really well (I didn’t want anything too short) and comes to a few inches above my knees. I’m a size 14 and the L fitted me with room to spare. I swim every day and put this on after my shower and when I can’t be bothered to get dressed back into proper clothes, but don’t want to lounge around in a dressing gown, either. I love it, and am resisting the urge to buy two in case anything happens to the first one. But be warned: doing this (buying two of the same thing) will immediately render the first less special.

£35 from John Lewis.

A nice healthy lunch, that’s largely an assembly job


I eat insanely well during the week. My lunches are not calorie controlled, but because I tend not to eat dinner, I really pack my nutrients into the first half of the day.

This is a lovely lunch. It’s healthy but delicious; easy and you can of course customise it however you want. I tend to bake bread in the morning, so this is a good time to put some veg in the oven to roast it for lunch later on. I use red onion, peppers, squash, a good tablespoon of olive oil, some herbs. Whatever veg I have.

Come lunch time I either use some sourdough or, more frequently, some of these delicious flat breads: I buy the organic wholemeal version. They’ve got very few, natural, ingredients and also, unopened, keep for a few weeks so good to have in. Although I make my own flatbreads occasionally, I often just want a quick lunch and this enables me.

When I’m ready to eat I heat up my flat bread in a flat frying pan, then top it with some Tracklements Chilli Jam or Stokes Red Onion Marmalade – just spread a bit around. Then scatter some lettuce/spinach/rocket leaves atop, plus some avocado. Scoop up your roasted veg, top with some suitable protein if you so wish – goat’s cheese, crumbled feta, dry-fried halloumi, sardines etc. Scatter over some toasted nuts/seeds if you like, drizzle with olive oil. Eat. It’s delicious and you feel really good afterwards.


White chocolate and strawberry cheesecake (no cook)

This is a Waitrose recipe that I adapted. The original, to my mind, uses far too much butter to biscuit ratio and you end up with a greasy mass. It’s also imperative you line the base and sides. I don’t think you need the extra cream on top, either. But add it if it’s more of an occasion.

200g whatever biscuits you like at the bottom of a cheesecake

50g melted butter

400g strawberries, stalks removed and cut in half/slices for the top

200g white chocolate

400g cream cheese

25g caster sugar

170ml double cream and mint leaves to go on top (although note: you need 4 tablespoons of double cream for the actual cheesecake filling). So if you decide not to add the cream at the top, you’ll still need some double cream.

You need a 20cm/8″ loose-based cake tin which you need to line the base and sides of. I know it’s a faff but so is trying to dislodge a cheesecake that’s welded itself to the tin.

Crush up the biscuits in whatever way you see fit: food processor, plastic bag with a rolling pin. Tip crushes up biscuits into a bowl and add the 50g melted butter. Stir together and then line the cake tin with it – the base and as far up the sides as you can go. Cut the strawberries in half and place, face side down, until you’ve covered the base.

Chill it whilst you make the filling.

Melt the chocolate in a bowl over boiling water/or gently, in a microwave. When all molten, cool slightly whilst you mix together the cream cheese and sugar with two tablespoons of boiling water. To this, now, beat in the melted chocolate a bit at a time at first, then add the rest in, with four tablespoons from the 170ml of double cream if using for the topping, if not just 4tbsps of double cream. Mix all together.

Put on top of biscuit base. If you want to do a cream topping, whip the rest of the cream until just firm, put on top of the cream cheese filling, top with sliced or halved strawberries and chill, overnight if possible.

Top with mint leaves just before eating. It’s best 20mins out of the fridge.