Jack the Ripper Tour

I love London, mostly because it’s full of fun inspiring things to do.

Recently, I headed out on a Jack the Ripper tour of London, with my Dad, the excellent Blue Badge tour guide. I love seeing unusual hidden parts of London, such as the alphabet shutters above on Petticoat Lane.

To book Sean for an amazing tour of London’s most famous mystery you can email him on seankelleher@btinternet.com.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Budget busting BB creams

I’m not sure about you, but I’m a busy woman. When it comes to skincare routines I don’t tend to have a vast amount of time.  Washing, moisturising, primer, foundation, exhausting. So when I heard about BB Creams, I couldn’t wait to try them out.

I had heard about 3 particular brands, so I was keen to try them out. The three I tried were Garnier BB cream, Maybelline BB Cream and Superdrug own Brand BB cream.

Garnier BB cream

A thick cream which seemed to cover up a multitude of sins, this cream is one for days when your skin is feeling dehydrated, or you have one blemish too many.  Be warned it is rather thick so should be applied sparingly. 6/10

Superdrug BB cream.

I have to say, for a own brand cream this really is a winner. It is a 5 in 1 BB cream which contains primer, moisturiser, a concealer and a foundation, and the shades and texture of the cream are light, allowing your skin to breathe. The only thing which disappointed me about this brand was the lack on suncream. Factor is an important element of skin care routine (I wear factor 50 every day!)  so if you are claiming to be an all in one cream then SPF should really be part of the equasion. 7/10

Maybelline Dream Fresh BB Cream

Maybelline has the edge when it comes to numbers. The 8 in 1 cream hydrates all day, blurs imperfections, contains an SPF 30, and complements skin tone. It is a nice colour and this one really does last all day. Light and airy, this cream also doesn’t feel so heavy on the skin. 9/10

Posted in Beauty | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Summer at Feng Sushi

It seems that, finally, on this beautiful Sunday, the sun has put it’s hat on. After weeks of dreary drizzle, I’m sat in my garden writing away with a mojito in one hand and a ice cream in the other. Bliss.

This time of the year, is special because it’s one of the few times I get to experience life outside in the UK. There’s nothing I love more than whiling away long, hot long summer evenings eating and drinking with friends.

So when I headed to Feng Sushi in West Hampstead last week, I was very keen to try out their new summer menu.  I love sushi, but I do think good quality sushi is becoming hard to find in London. If when I say sushi, you think of a Tesco prepacked salmon and prawn selection, then you, my friend, are missing out.

Founder and Japanese food fanatic, Silla Bjeerum feels the same way, so she has ensured her menu is both good quality and good value (no easy task, considering sustainable fish doesn’t come cheap).

The summer menu created by Silla doesn’t disappoint. We started off with a refreshing chilled Champagne Saki cocktail. with a splash of saki, and and brown sugar cube thrown in, refreshing, and perfect for cooling down on a warm summer evening.

We then went on enjoy a selection of delicious chilli edamame, perfect for getting our taste buds going.

Next up we had cold summer tofu, which was seasoned with fresh ginger, bonito flakes and spring onions. I wasn’t particularly excited at the prospect of this dish initially, as I’m not a big fan of tofu, but this fresh and delicious tofu was one of a kind,  a total taste sensation.

Next up we had salmon tar tar bites, which were (as with all the fish) fresh, and organic, sustainable and sensational. 

Silla fought long and hard to ensure all the fish used in Feng Sushi is sustainable and totally fresh, and the blood sweat and tears she has put into her restaurant speaks volumes when you take one bite out of this delicious Salmon tar tar.

The next dish we sampled, was the summer salad, which is a fresh twist on cous cous. I’m not sure I could quite get my head around the concept of Japanese style cous cous, so it wasn’t my favourite dish on the menu, but even though it wasn’t really my cup of tea, it wasn’t half bad.

Next up were the chilled ramen noodles. These were tasty, totally spongy, and soft. The texture was melt in your mouth good. They were served with a delicious prawn tempura.

Last but not least, was my personal favourite, crispy cornish sardines. These were delicious, the tofu tar tar dip created a flavour party on my palette, which still get my mouth watering every time I think about it.

Final word – the summer menu at Feng Sushi is modern but true to Japanese tradition. Silla believes good fish should speak for itself and her dishes certainly do that. The best part is all the dishes are totally affordable, and perfect for sharing, plus the outside tables in West Hampstead sit on a little patch of green, making it an idyllic spot to while away a summer evening.

(The view from Feng Sushi)

Finding affordable, delicious and ethical sushi within London is not an easy task, so I was more than impressed Feng Sushi ticked all these boxes. Make sure you pop in and sample their summer delights whilst the sun is gracing us with it’s presence.

Posted in Cheap Eats, Eating Out | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

DIY dip dye

Summer totally sucks this year. When it comes to my wardrobe, I simply don’t know what to buy.  Should I purchase summery pieces in case the sun shines his head? Or skip it and buy key winter pieces for the upcoming AW season?

This week, I avoided the whole dilemma by creating my own little summer number, a dip dye dress, which I brought from H and M for a mere £3.99. Bargain.

This is the little white number I started with. Cute but plain I decided to jazz it up with a little colour.  So the dye was an added for £5.00, and 500g of table salt which is to be mixed with hot water, and your dye.

Turns out, dip dyeing is REALLY easy. You simply submerge clothes into water a little at a time (move a small section further into the water every 15 minutes) to create a rippled colour effect, until the whole item is submerged. Here’s my attempt below.

 

Once your done, stick the dress in the washing machine for a quick machinewash so all the dye washes off of the garment. Then hang out to dry.

The end result should look something like this. It’s quite cool right? A dip dyed dress for just under a tenner!

 

If I ever go on holiday this year (fingers crossed!) I will be rocking this bad boy.

 

Posted in Bargains, Fashion | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Brixton Village welcomes Meat Liquors little Brother, Wishbone

 

If you think theres a gap in the market for finger lickin good fried chicken then listen up. Meat Liquor founder Scott Collins and food writer and chef William Leigh agree, and so they’ve decided to set up shop in evolving foodie destination Brixton Village.

I had a chat with William who gave me the low down on Brixton’s newest addition. Expect ice cold beers, tasty chicken korean wings and delicious decor. Are you salivating yet? Read the full interview below…

So, what sets Wishbone apart from its competitors?

Wishbone is the first free-range fried chicken shop in the UK. While we’ve seen a few other places focusing on chicken popping up of late, Wishbone is about fried chicken only – think plates of wings, super crispy fresh from the fryer chicken and cold craft beers.

Yum! What inspired you to set up a permanent fixture in Brixton market?

I’ve lived in Brixton and Stockwell for a number of years and I’ve loved watching the market grow. It’s become a genuine food destination that rivals any in London. And most of all I love the mix – it’s somehow so alive, vibrant and full of interesting people.

What sets you apart from the other fried chicken outlets in Brixton?

We’re bringing something completely different to the table. For so long fried chicken has meant battery farmed chickens with low quality meat and for us this had to change. Wishbone will be taking something that has been mistreated – Fresh chicken. So if you are looking for your usual overcooked, greasy, chicken left in a hot cupboard for hours, you’ll be in the wrong place.

Our inspirations comes from things we’ve tried around the globe and made our own. We’ve got Korean style wings that are twice fried, tossed in a Korean chilli paste and served with daikon; we’ve got a Thai-style dish that’s bursting with fresh mint, chillies and lime.

Then there’s the booze. Giles, my good friend and the genius behind SoulShakers, will be working on our bar with us; Hobo Beer will be making an appearance (a new Czech craft lager made with 100% Saaz hops) alongside a few others and I imagine you’ll see a cider or two.

Are you operating a no bookings policy?

This has become a defining question for so many places… We’re going to work with a no bookings policy with around 40 covers upstairs serving the full but concise menu. Downstairs it’ll be beer and finger food… Brixton lends itself to the mix – a lot of people like grazing there at the weekend, so a plate of wings is perfect for a quick stop off.

What are your insider tips for places to eat in London right now?

I hold dear my little black book of favourite dishes that I have in places, but I’ll let you in on a few secrets.

Goodman, in Mayfair does best steak I’ve ever had, (the Belted Galloway bone-in rib eye). The Heron in Edgeware road does completely bonkers but amazing Thai food (the fried egg salad is one of my all time favourite dishes). Kao Sarn in Brixton Village does the best Keuy Teow Tom Yum Goong – a version of Tom Yum soup from Bangkok.  Jose’s and Pizarro’s – he’s been a long time friend of mine and I hugely respect his cooking and sourcing – his croquetas are about the best you’ll ever try; the Katsu sandwich at Tsuru Sushi is one of the most incredible sarnies you’ll ever try; lastly, although it’s a fair way from where I live, I love Song Que. The green papaya and prawn salad there is just unreal.

What makes you so passionate about gourmet fast food?

I’m not a big fan of the term ‘gourmet fast good’. From where I sit we’re just taking a product and making it as good as we can – and that’s something every kitchen should be doing.

That said, I do love fast food – from the hamburger (I’m a secret Big Mac addict) and shwarma (not a donner!) to the takes on fast food you see in places like Bar Boulud. I love the way they’ve refined things, but not lost touch with their roots. It’s no good poshing a dish up if it bears no resemblance to its origins. You lose nostalgia.

The gourmet aspect comes from my time as a chef and wanting to refine things to make them the best they can be, using the best ingredients. I love fried chicken and I’ve eaten it across the world, from Bangkok to Brooklyn. Here in the UK we simply don’t do it justice. 

Fast food can be very bad, but places like MeatLiquor have shown it can be amazing when done with care and thought. 

I imagine that Wishbone plans are very under wraps right now, can you reveal one tiny little exciting thing we can look forward to on the menu? 

The menu is definitely under-wraps, I think you’re probably amongst the first to hear about the Korean wings… All that want to know more… you’ll have to pop down once we’re open!

Wishbone will open it’s doors in Brixton Village this August. 

 

 

 

Posted in Cheap Eats | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

Metallic Magic

I heart my new skirt from H+M. Silver is my new black.

Plus it’s only £29.99 – bargain alert! Due to the weather not playing nice I’ve teamed mine with a winter ensemble but as soon as the sun reappears I’ll be combining it with a summer tee and cute pumps. Affordable and versatile = perfect combo.

Posted in Fashion | Tagged | 3 Comments

The Little Things.

I’m not a very good sick patient, this is one thing I know for sure. I’m terrible at sitting still and doing nothing, so today as I’m laying in bed with a tummy virus from hell, I’m finding ways to pass time. First up – nail paint.

Posted in Beauty | Tagged | Leave a comment

Perfect pancakes.

Ingredients needed:

• 3 Large Eggs
• 115g Flour
• Spoonful baking powder
• 140 ML milk
• Blueberries

Condiments
• Maple Syrup
• Creme Fraiche

This weekend I made the most amazing pancakes known to man. The recipe was a classic american pancake mix combined with blueberries and creme fraiche. The result was delicious and incredibly easy to make.

Simply mix all the pancake ingredients, and fry up with blueberries before serving with a smidgen of maple syrup and creme fraiche, Et Voila!

How do you like your pancakes?

Posted in Cheap Eats | 2 Comments