Year: 2014

Winter Warmer | Lentil + Coconut Soup

Do you like lentils? Do you like soup? Do you like wholesome wintry dishes that feel like the gastronomic equivalent of a snuggle on the sofa before a bellowing fire? You do? You do? Then you’ll love this soup! A soup so thick and luscious it might more aptly be termed a stew.  This is the soup I dream about on winter walks through London, when I can’t feel my toes and my nose feels like it might drop off at any moment. This is the soup I dream about on dawdling tube rides and when I’m at a loose end at work; it’s my fail-safe, win-win, absolutely delicious, utmost favourite winter warmer. It’s the soup I dream of coming home to. You dream about soups too, right? Well, anyway…this soup is dreamy. It’s also gluten-free, vegan (without the natural yoghurt), packed with protein and iron (extra important for us veggies) and extremely filling. In short, it can do no wrong. Go forth and make soup! xo You’ll need: 1 tbsp olive oil 1 large onion, diced 2 cloves garlic, crushed or diced …

Been There | Black and White Berlin

Germany boasts a smorgasbord of vibrant (and underrated) cities. But there’s nowhere quite like Berlin. My trip to the German Hauptstadt was a whirlwind of seeing and doing and walking and eating and drinking and friend-ing. We marched all over the city until our legs ached (Berlin is HUGE) and enjoyed the brief moments of morning calm in our tiny Kreuzberg apartment before venturing out for the day. We danced through the night and laughed all day; filled our hearts with joy, our stomachs with good food and Radler, and came back with goofy photobooth snaps and new laughter lines. A weekend and a half well spent, dare I say. And, of course, I still have Berlin on the brain. The visit re-awakened my love for Germany and the Germans, for a life there again. One day, maybe. For now I’m content with the memories and the pictures (to be shared in the coming days, without restraint I’m afraid!) and the fact that life in London has picked up just where it left off, at full speed, and I am happy and …

Been There | Berlin Berlin

Outside an icy rain was falling. Men in Bavarian-blue shirts shovelled schnitzel into their mouths as they sat on stools at the bar, thick legs dangling. I ran my hand across the counter, tracing the indentations in the wood with my palm, watching the cigarette smoke outside the window float through the air. I was twenty and fresh from a cross-country train, sharing a plate of tiramisu in that airy bar with a man I was falling in love with. I spent the rest of the weekend dancing in a 1913 ballroom in celebration of my best friend’s 21st birthday, sidestepping puddles of snow in the streets, falling in love with Berlin too. And I haven’t been back since. But I have Berlin on the brain. I’ve been thinking of the city’s wide boulevards and grafitti-smothered walls. The rattle of the U-Bahn, its windows emblazoned with the small insignia of the Brandenburg Gate. The Baroque splendour of the cathedral twirling up from the ground. The skeleton of a bombed-out church rising resplendent along the Kurfürstendamm. Schloss Charlottenburg in the autumn. Hot chocolates piled …

Weekly Thanksgivings.

  No better time to give thanks than Thanksgiving, right? I often wish we celebrated the American holiday here too – I certainly wouldn’t refuse a day dedicated to cosy family gatherings, gratitude and sweet potato pie in the midst of gloomy November. Instead, I’ll celebrate Thanksgiving in spirit. Happy day of thanks, one and all! I’m thankful this week for brisk bike rides through the dark. I’m thankful for the joy bestowed in volunteering with a group of inspiring young women. I am thankful for the possibility of hot chocolate, which I rarely end up purchasing – and yet the simple knowledge that I pass too many coffee shops to count on my way home is enough to sustain me on cold winter walks to the tube. If I wanted hot chocolate, I could have it – and when I do, it’s sublime and creamy and all this cold-handed glove-forgetting girl could wish for. This week I’m thankful for memories of a lovely weekend with my sister, for my new mauve-grey bedroom walls, for evening yoga, for real French camembert, for new friends, for …

(Belated) Poem For The Weekend #25

The Journey, by Mary Oliver One day you finally knew what you had to do, and began, though the voices around you kept shouting their bad advice– though the whole house began to tremble and you felt the old tug at your ankles. “Mend my life!” each voice cried. But you didn’t stop. You knew what you had to do, though the wind pried with its stiff fingers at the very foundations, though their melancholy was terrible. It was already late enough, and a wild night, and the road full of fallen branches and stones. But little by little, as you left their voices behind, the stars began to burn through the sheets of clouds, and there was a new voice which you slowly recognized as your own, that kept you company as you strode deeper and deeper into the world, determined to do the only thing you could do– determined to save the only life you could save.