Book Review: Cleanse, Nurture, Restore with Herbal Tea

cleanse_nurture_restoreIt’s always fun to get something new in the post. This month the people at Quarto sent me not one, but two very interesting books that I thought deserved a special mention. I’ll start with one called Cleanse, Nurture, Restore with Herbal Tea written by Sebastian Pole, co-founder of Pukka Herbs in 2001, which is of course the same company that makes the very well-known Pukka teas.

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Coffee Date #5 and Six-year Blog-versary

cappuccino-5820This morning I realised that this blog has been active for six years, almost to the date. I was going to let this pass without any acknowledgement, but J insisted. So here I am, and we meet again. However do I really need an excuse for another coffee date? Was the latest one in June? Shish!

So after we stand and wait for our cappuccinos, first and foremost I want to properly wish you a Happy New Year! I hope that 2017 has started off well for you. The ‘with a bang’ thing is not that important. What 2016 has taught me is how much I shouldn’t take anything for granted and to live one day at a time. I’m not going to lecture you – there’s no need to. I just want to thank you for being there. What are your plans for this year? I don’t get the concept of resolutions but writing down some thoughts works for me.

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Restorative Chicken and Vegetable Broth

chicken-and-veggie-broth-0573Happy New Year everyone! I hope you had a good break over the past few weeks, and that you enjoyed the holidays. It was a very busy time here of course, and my kitchen worked overtime this year. I’m so happy that it did though. I also had the time for some baking for family and friends. There was no better time for switching on the oven and turning on the heat. It wasn’t that cold in December, but let me assure you that January has started off with a kick. We’re feeling it here in Malta this week. It’s going to be a cold weekend. Some are loving it, relishing it even, others are fuming excuse the pun because they’d rather be sweating it out in August.

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Gingernut and Mascarpone Mini Cheesecakes, and a few thoughts

gingernut-and-mascarpone-cheesecake-0748Seven days until Christmas. Now that’s 2016 almost over. I just can’t believe it. Can you?! We have been having quite a rainy week and for the very first time yesterday I felt the cold and the humidity. Is it really time to wear our coats? Could be, but it should get a little warmer over the next few days so we’ll just have to see about that. My friends in MI have been some wicked snowstorms. I’ve been asking for some but none of them obliged yet! Oh well.

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My Christmas Recipe List

turkey-roast-6464Hey everyone! I hope you’ve been having a good few weeks. I have been out of sorts lately. December is not my month – I’m not too big on Christmas. I do the usual stuff and J and I have our family over for lunch which proceeds into afternoon tea and evening drinks. We don’t mind at all, but I cannot deny that by the end of the day I’ll be totally zonked out. It is a quiet day, and I make sure to plan ahead. This year I’m still going through lists and things, and year after year I feel like I’m falling behind. However it all turns out all right in the end so I’m not going to worry. I decided it’s just not worth it.

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Roast Pork Loin with Caraway Seeds, Lemon and Garlic

roast-pork-7022While apologising profusely for not posting a recipe, or anything else really during the past few days, I can say that the busiest time of the year for me has officially started. It began a few weeks ago to be honest, but only now I am feeling it. It – as in what-the-heck-I-don’t-know-what-I’m-doing type of thing. What’s worse is that Christmas food is at the bottom of my list, and that almost never happens. I have, with the help of my lovely mum, put up some decorations, tree and all, but as much as I have decided not to stress about the trivial things, I’m stressing more as a result. Does that happen to you too? Mind you I cannot complain too much you know – I am prepping for a simple meal and I just have to see that I have all the ingredients I need. That’s all. However as much as I’m trying to put on my Nigella anxiety-lessening supercape, I’m failing miserably. But things can only get better. (No, I’m not quoting D:Ream.)

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Neapolitan-Inspired Bean Soup

gino-dacampos-bean-soup-0628I was going to write an entirely different recipe today, but that is taking so much of my time on this rainy busy day, that I just had to forgo the idea. Instead let me give you a deliciously hearty recipe for a soup that is easily becoming a staple in my house.

A few months ago, my bro-in-law J2 awarded me the guardianship of some of his cookbooks, a role which I take very seriously, by cooking from them myself, as it should be. It made me think of this beautiful bean soup, especially because today the rain is coming down hard on this island, and it looks as if it’s staying for the next couple of days. It’s annoying but truly we need it. I feel sorry for all those who need to venture out. The roads are crazy with traffic and I just received a message from a friend saying how soaked she got. Stay safe and avoid extra driving everyone. It’s not nice out there.

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