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Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Perfect Summer Drink - Aperol Spritz

A few months ago I had never heard of an Aperol Spritz, but my lovely blogging friend Steph raved about it.  Fast forward to June of this year when I met up with Steph at The Taste of London in Regent's Park and she introduced me to this mighty fine cocktail.

Perfect Summer Drink - Aperol Spritz

It's been a slippery slope for me and the Aperol ever since. Later that month I mixed up two litres of the lucozade looking concoction in an old plastic water bottle (glass bottles were not allowed) to take to a Jessie J concert with friends in the middle of Cannock Chase forest. I'm definitely not 'into' Jessie J and the Aperol helped me to not care what I was listening to.

Perfect Summer Drink - Aperol Spritz

A couple of days ago I had been busy baking and cooking dinner, and the sweat was pouring off me. As soon as the husband came in from work I retired to my quiet corner of the garden where I enjoyed an ice cold Aperol Spritz (or two) courtesy of World Duty Free, who are currently hosting their Summer Drinks Festival.

Perfect Summer Drink - Aperol Spritz Perfect Summer Drink - Aperol Spritz Perfect Summer Drink - Aperol Spritz Perfect Summer Drink - Aperol Spritz Perfect Summer Drink - Aperol Spritz Perfect Summer Drink - Aperol Spritz

After a while I was joined in the garden by Jack, who came out to fix his goal. I kept quite and still and he didn't notice I was there, allowing the peace to continue for a little longer.

Perfect Summer Drink - Aperol Spritz

To make an Aperol Spritz you will need :

3 parts Prosecco
2 parts Aperol
1 splash of soda
slice of orange
lots of ice
  • pour Prosecco, Aperol and soda over ice and stir
  • garnish with a slice of orange 


WIN a Tefal Infinity Press Juicer

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One lucky reader of this blog can now win one for themselves.


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Please note: The Crazy Kitchen is hosting this giveaway, however TEFAL is responsible for selecting a winner and dispatching the prize
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Monday, 28 July 2014

What makes your Ultimate Cup of Coffee?

Last week we were holidaying in the Isle of Wight, but with such good weather it could easily be mistaken for France or Spain. (Jack actually thought we were abroad due to our arrival on the island by ferry).

Each morning we sat outside and enjoyed breakfast on our terrace (ok it was more of a concrete base than a terrace), in the tranquil setting with nothing to disturb us other than the sound of the birds and occasional distant car.

My morning usually starts with a coffee, a nice strong and milky one, with a handful of almonds, however on holiday I indulged a little. (Excuse the improvised dip bowls as we were in a caravan without the luxury of a cupboard full of plates and bowls).

The chocolate dip is a very simple to make treat to enjoy at breakfast (or any other time you like), just requiring coffee and Nutella. All you need to do is mix a large scoop of Nutella with a shot of espresso (or instant coffee made up with a little water), until smooth.

Use this rich chocolate sauce to dip your favourite pastries in. If you prefer more of a hot mocha drink for dipping then just add more hot water and a little cream.

I was intrigued when I heard about Taylor's Coffee cold brew, which, as the name suggests, is coffee brewed with cold water instead of hot, over a longer period of time from 6 to 24 hours. The fact that the coffee is cold makes it great in the summer to make iced coffee, as it doesn't need chilling down before using. 

It was also interesting to hear about making double strength cold brew which can then be diluted with boiling water to make a cup of brewed coffee in an instant, which is great whether you're on your own and just want one cup or are having friends around and want to make a large quantity of coffees without waiting for it to brew.

How do you like your coffee? 

If you haven't tried cold brewing before then watch this video to find out how it's done, as well as visiting the Taylor's website to found out how they make The Ultimate Cup of Coffee

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My Dream of a Modern Kitchen

It's time for me to waffle on about kitchens again, and my love for a new one. Whilst on holiday we stayed in a brand new caravan with a brand new kitchen, and even though it was only quite small (and the fact that it was in a caravan) I loved it. I loved the clean lines of the cream cupboard doors and the long straight chrome handles. I fell in love with the kitchen whilst on holiday last year too, but those cupboards were handleless, which has left me confused - to handle or not to handle?

modern kitchens
Autograph Driftwood Gloss v Handleless Cashmere Gloss from Wren Living

My dream kitchen wishes
  • When I do eventually get my new dream kitchen I do know that I want it to be modern, and I do want it to be light coloured (but not white). I find that the clean lines of modern kitchens are so much easier to keep clean than more intricate detailing of more classic designs. 
  • I like uncluttered work surfaces, which means there will have to be plenty of storage space for all of my 'stuff'.
  • I would like a couple of open shelves to display some of my bits & bobs that are too nice to be kept behind a closed door.
  • I really really would like a pull out larder so that I can wave goodbye to out of date foods at the back of the cupboard.
  • I need a very large drawer to keep all my baking tins in to avoid the crashing of pans on the floor every time one of us opens the baking tin cupboard.
  • I'm still undecided on the worktop - granite would be a dream and I love the look of walnut, but I know that laminate would be the cheaper more sensible option.
  • I would like a range cooker, or at least a larger than standard oven and hob, and a built in microwave that doesn't take up valuable work space.
  • I would like a cutlery drawer that's large enough to keep ALL of my cutlery and utensils in (ok maybe not my vast array of wooden spoons and silicone spatulas), and they would be neatly arranged so that I don't have to spend ages rummaging through an over crowded drawer each time I need a zester.
  • I need a large area with good natural light for food styling and photographing, preferably with a pull out shelf and drawer underneath to keep my laptop and essentials close at hand.
  • I would like sleek, integrated appliances such as the washing machine and dishwasher, and have my American fridge freezer built into the units.
  • Good lighting is essential as our under-cupboard lights haven't worked for years and I miss them.
  • Last but not least, a wine cooler - which goes without saying really.

Did I miss anything?

modern kitchens

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