Favourite Foodie Finds October

Wait… I planned to do a Favourite Foodie Finds in September, how is it already halfway through October?! Oh well, at least that means that I get to do some photo styling with autumnal leaves – yay! Here are my Favourite Foodie Finds for October… (and September!)

Snacks

Snack time: an important part of the workday, some might say THE most important part. Recently snack time has been 9.45am because I’ve been nailing finding low calorie snacks that don’t compromise on taste, which means they call to me from my handbag. I’m not usually even hungry!

Hippeas*

Favourite Foodie Finds October

To be honest I couldn’t imagine what the heck an ‘organic chickpea puff’ would be like but for only 90 calories per bag I was willing to try them to find out! They are actually extremely moreish, like a super crunchy more flavoursome version of a Wotsit! My favourite flavour is Sweet & Smokin’ made with paprika spice and smoked sea salt, but I’ve happily been making my way through all of the flavours on a regular basis (sorry colleagues!).

You can pick them up from Superdrug, Waitrose and Boots among other places – just look out for the sunny yellow packets!

Find out more at: Hippeas.com

Emily’s Fuit and Veg Crisps

Favourite Foodie Finds October

Okay, so if you want the healthiest option for a snack then you should probably just eat some raw fruit. Sometimes though I want something a bit more satisfying, or just lighter to make the commute that bit easier. I’m finding these a good compromise as an occassional snack. Each bag counts as one of my 5 a day, they’re vegan, gluten free and although high in natural sugars, are low fat and low calorie.

My favourites to munch on are Crunchy Red Apple, Crunchy Pineapple and Sweet Potato, Carrot and Beetroot.

You can pick them up in Holland and Barratt and Waitrose.

Find out more at: EmilyCrisps.com

Flavoured Pea Snacks with Chilli and Lime

Favourite Foodie Finds October

I went into Aldi looking for a footstool bargain (it was £40 and a dupe of a gorgeous The White Company one I have been lusting after!). Sadly there were none left and I was a bit hangry, so I looked around for an emergency snack. These are what I grabbed. Again, they are ridiculously low cal, cheap as chips but also surprisingly good! I can’t find a link to them but if you’re in Aldi have a look for them and let me know what you think!

Spreads

Pip and Nut – latest releases*

Favourite Foodie Finds October

Pip and Nut very kindly sent me a selection of their latest releases to try including the Limited Edition Chocolate Hazlenut Coconut butter which is a grown up version of chocolate spread.

I LOVE Pip and Nut, not only because all of their nut butters are delicious, but also because they make a point of not using palm oil and I fully support that. (My post here which explains why.)

They’ve also added crunchy versions of some of their spreads, much to my delight. I’m now rather partial to a spoonful of their crunchy peanut butter straight from the jar when I need an energy boost!

You can find Pip and Nut in most supermarkets these days and Holland and Barrett too.

Find out more at: PipandNut.com

The Naughty Ones

Okay so you didn’t think I’d been a saint all month did you? Hahaha nope. I ate ice cream and drank gin too. Eat good to eat bad – that’s my motto!

Ben and Jerry’s Peanut Butter Cup

Favourite Foodie Finds October

This was a case of love at first bite and goddammit they had better stop reducing it to £2.50 soon or I’m going to need chairlifting off my sofa before long. It’s got huge Peanut Butter Cups in it, it’s chocolatey, it’s peanut buttery… it’s divine.

Favourite Foodie Finds October

Find out more at: BenJerry.co.uk

Rock Rose Premium Scottish Gin – Autumn Edition*

Favourite Foodie Finds October

I’m not much of a gin drinker but the fella is a connoiseur so when Rock Rose asked if I’d like to try their Autumn Edition I knew I’d have a willing volunteer to help me taste test it!

This is a really different gin to any that either of us have ever had before. It’s warm, herbaceous and a little bit spicy, distilled using traditional Rock Rose botanicals, blackberries and raspberries. It’s spot on for this time of year – pour a glass of it and enjoy snuggled under a cosy blanket!

Find out more/buy it at: Dunnetbaydistillers.co.uk

…so that’s my round up of Favourite Foodie Finds for October. What delectable goodies have you discovered recently?

LovedByLaura

*Disclaimer: Items marked with an asterisk were kindly gifted as PR samples for my consideration. As always I’ve given you my honest thoughts on each.

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Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience

What do you get when you cross an iconic interior brand with a Michelin trained chef who used to work at Heston Blumenthal’s The Fat Duck? A mindblowing dream of a pop up dining experience that I couldn’t have been more thrilled to experience, that’s what!

Grab a cuppa and put your feet up for this one, I’ve got a LOT to share with you!

Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience

For the past three weeks the UK’s largest wallpaper manufacturer Graham and Brown have been welcoming visitors to a townhouse in Soho’s Greek Street for their temporary installation The House of Wallpaper. During the day there were exclusive seminars and industry talks, then at night the top floor was transformed into a restaurant for a completely unique dining experience inspired by the stunning wallpapers from their collections.

Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience

My visit started on the ground floor, learning some of the brand’s heritage of which they are rightly very proud. Henry Brown and Harold Graham were dear friends all the way back in 1946 who spotted a wonderful opportunity to produce beautiful embossed metallic wallpaper. This came at a time when the public were greatly in need of escapism from the war and their designs flew out the door as people embraced the opportunity to brighten their homes. The rest, as they say, is history!

Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience

Graham and Brown might have a rich past, but its collections are always bang on trend. I saw a glimpse into the creative journey that goes on behind the scenes – textures, colours, places and people are all captured on mood boards to provide the inspiration behind the final design of each new wallpaper.

Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience

Another installation in the House of Wallpaper was the delightfully trippy mirror room, lined floor to ceiling with their 3d effect ‘Origami’ wallpaper and infinity mirrors! The 3D print made the walls appear padded and I had to keep reminding myself that they were in fact flat!

Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience

Feeling suitably inspired and taking mental notes to revamp every room in my house after seeing all of their gorgous prints and colour schemes, I headed up to the main event: The House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience!

…the stairs that led the way naturally showcased more of the stunning designs!

Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience

I have to admit it was a dream come true to go on the food journey created by chef Pedro Passinhas and his talented team over the seven courses. Each was a masterpiece in it’s own right, taking inspiration from a Graham and Brown wallpaper and translating it into an artistic, incredibly skilled and, just as important, downright delicious dish!

Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience

The first course set the scene. Named ‘Light As Paper’ and inspired by the wallpaper Tranquil Rose Gold, it consisted of a ginger and cumin foam, carrot and orange granita and an edible napkin! I can’t remember what it was made out of but they’d dehydrated it to make it look like paper which was absolute genius. (Luckily it didn’t taste like paper!)

Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience

Next, probably my favourite course: ‘Mineral’. Inspired by the design Aura Slate, this dish was comprised all oysters, horseradish cream, parsely mayonnaise and dill. I haven’t tasted anything like it before, it was incredible and just so beautiful to look at.

Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience

‘Scrunched Up’ was a scallop sheet, slow cooked pork neck, squash puree, pickled cauliflower and almonds. As the chefs brought each dish to our table they explained how each element was made. The scallop sheet, for example, took over a day to prepare to ensure that it had just the right look, texture and flavour.

A fun course was ‘Twigs’, inspired by Graham and Brown’s Wallpaper of the Year ‘Pierre Pink’ (as seen on this chair).

Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience

We’d all failed to notice that hidden in amongst the floral centerpieces on each table were edible crispy mushroom snacks, which we were then invited to tuck into!

Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience

…the courses kept arriving, each as beautiful and delicately delicious as the last. I was in awe at ‘Walk Through The Woods’ which perfectly recreated a mossy forest floor in edible form. It was fun foraging for all the tasty elements hidden in the dish, each mouthful was a new discovery!

Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience

Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience

As we got up to leave, we were treated to one final surprise – a gift bag of pampering products selected by Pedro himself after a trip overseas. What a thoughtful and unexpected end to the night!

Graham and Brown's House of Wallpaper Pop Up Dining Experience

Massive thanks go to Graham and Brown as well as Pedro Passinhas and his team for an unforgettable evening at The House of Wallpaper and of course to my dinner date for the evening FrannyMac who as usual kept me in stitches!

LovedByLaura

Disclaimer: I was invited to experience The House Of Wallpaper by Graham and Brown and my visit was complimentary. All views, general gushiness over delicious food and fangirling at chefs are, as always, completely and honestly me!

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LovedByLaura 3rd Birthday Personalised Gift

The lovely peeps at GiftsOnline4U got in touch recently to ask if I’d like to pick something from their site to review. As soon as I saw their Personalised Moet* I knew that engraving one would be a lovely way to commemorate a very special occasion for me: My blog just had it’s birthday and LovedByLaura is now three years old!

LovedByLaura 3rd Birthday Personalised Champagne

Starting LovedByLaura is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made and I’m so grateful for everything wonderful that’s happened to me as a result of the simple act of me sharing things that I love on an internet page.

There are so many marvellous opportunities when you’re a blogger that it’s taught me to enjoy a life less ordinary and seek out new adventures every day. I’ve met some incredible, inspiring and downright hilarious people through blogging, some of whom have become lifelong friends. Through blogging I’ve also had the opportunity to work with amazing brands and companies that I respect and admire and the fact that they enjoy my content and want to collaborate with me still thrills me every single time.

LovedByLaura 3rd Birthday Personalised Champagne

The GiftsOnline4U website was easy to navigate around other than a persistent pop up box that decided to stalk me around the site after I declined to opt into the mailing list. Ordering was straightforward, I selected my chosen personalised gift and was given an option to fill in up to three lines of text for the engraving as well as being able to select from a number of fonts. In the end I decided on the following:

Loved By Laura is 3 years old.
Let’s drink champagne and
dance on the table!

A few days later as I was getting ready for work there was a knock at the door – a courier with my parcel to sign for. The box was marked ‘fragile’ but the bottle comes encased in sturdy polysterene so it arrived in perfect condition.

LovedByLaura 3rd Birthday Personalised Gift Champagne

I’m so pleased with how it turned out. The engraving is neat and easy to read, transforming what would already be a lovely gift into a wonderful keepsake. Now every time I see it I’ll have a happy reminder of my blog turning three.

LovedByLaura 3rd Birthday Personalised Gift Champagne

That’s why I love picking out the right personalised gift for my friends and family when birthdays, Christmas and anniversaries come up. An engraved, meaningful message shows that you’ve put thought into what you’ve chosen and it’s likely to be something that they’ll cherish for a very long time.

…I can’t say the same for the champagne itself however – it’s only survived this long on account of my being away on holiday when my blog birthday happened and is chilling in the fridge as we speak!

LovedByLaura 3rd Birthday Personalised Gift Champagne

To make it even more special you can add a Personalised Champagne Box too, which I’d definitely consider if I was buying this for someone else.

LovedByLaura

*Disclaimer: The bottle of champagne was kindly gifted to me in return for an honest review. This post is not sponsored and all views are my own, unbiased opinion.

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Fine Dining for Less Than £20 | Prevost PeterboroughI often joke about having champagne taste and a beer budget, so you can imagine how excited I was to discover that Prévost (the restaurant at the top of my ‘must visit’ wishlist) is offering a set 3 course lunch for just £18.50 during August.

Putting Peterborough Fine Dining on the Map

Prévost has put the Peterborough on the map as a place to experience fine dining at it’s best. Led by the incredibly talented head chef Lee Clarke, its culinary creations have already earned the restaurant inclusion in the prestigious Michelin Guide in it’s first six months as well as being recently announced as a new entry in the Good Food Guide’s Top 50 for 2018.

The restaurant is hidden away down a side street in Priestgate. It’s a mere 2 minute walk from the city centre but if you didn’t know to look for it you’d miss it! If you do know what to look for, however, an unassuming archway leads you through to a courtyard and Prevost’s welcoming entrance.

Inside

Fine Dining for Less Than £20 | Prevost Peterborough

Inside Prévost is intimate and yet spacious all at the same time. The decor is modern with copper lighting and bar equipment, comfy sofas, a welcoming fireplace and a light and spacious dining area looking out onto a herb garden.

Fine Dining for Less Than £20 | Prevost Peterborough

The Lunch For Less menu is a set 3 courses which changes every week. We opted to add on a plate of freshly baked sour dough with cultured homemade butter for an extra £2.50 per head. The bread had a wonderful springy texture and a delicious crust which worked perfectly with a good slathering of the salted butter!

The Menu

Fine Dining for Less Than £20 Prevost Peterborough 10

The starter was described simply as Ham Hock with Spiced Apple and Plum, but this was a dish full of complexity and character. Lee brought the dish to each diner’s table personally, explaining that the accompanying salad was fresh from his mother’s garden which I thought was a lovely touch. The presentation was a joy with vibrant colours bursting off the plate, begging you to get stuck in.

This is the sort of dish where you really need to load your fork with a bit of every single element and then savour it in your mouth, allowing each taste to burst through. Acidity, creaminess, sweetness, salt, it was just perfect.

Fine Dining for Less Than £20 Prevost Peterborough

Our main was Confit Salmon and Fennel. Again, a simple description which didn’t give too much away and I loved the element of surprise that this created for us. We had fun picking out all of the different components – small white drops of sauce turned out to be a delicate horseradish, the fennel was presented 3 ways (I think!) showcasing how versatile it can be in skilled hands. The salmon itself had a delightfully crispy skin and lay on a bed of barley which reminded me of a white wine risotto. It left me craving more even though I knew dessert was still to come.

Fine Dining for Less Than £20 Prevost Peterborough 10

In all honesty I wasn’t expecting to enjoy the dessert because I don’t like banana but the Banana Soufflé with Malt Ice Cream was a sensation and my highlight of the whole meal! The soufflé was perfection – puffed to a great height over the rim of the dish with a crisp top and a light as air centre. The banana flavour definitely came through but in such a sweet subtle way that I enjoyed it without being overwhelmed. The accompanying ice cream rounded the dish off beautifully.

In retrospect we didn’t actually need the extra bread course at the beginning because the other courses were so generously proportioned and satisfyingly filling. Never let it be said again that fine dining means minute portions!

Final Thoughts

 

Fine Dining for Less Than £20 Prevost Peterborough

Overall I can’t fault the experience. To be able to enjoy cooking at this level of detail and care for less than £20 a head is just wonderful and whilst I’d encourage everyone in the area to snap up the offer whilst it lasts, at the same time I don’t want you to because I want to be able to get booked in again without a queue forming around the block!

Lee’s ambition is for Prévost to become the first Michelin starred restaurant in Peterborough and whilst I’m no food critic, I’d like to think that he’s well on his way achieving it.

Prévost

Fine Dining for Less Than £20 Prevost Peterborough

Address: 20 Priestgate, Peterborough PE1 1JA

Type: Restaurant, Fine Dining

Opening times:

Tuesday 6–9pm
Wednesday 12–2pm, 6–9pm
Thursday 12–2pm, 6–9pm
Friday 12–2pm, 6–9pm
Saturday 12–2pm, 6–9pm

Price: Usually starting at £32.50 for a 3 course meal, current Lunch For Less menu is £18.50 throughout August 2017.

Website: www.prevostpeterborough.co.uk

LovedByLaura

Disclaimer: This restaurant review is not sponsored and we paid for it in full (well… the fella did – thank you very much for the wonderful treat 🙂 ).

I have met Lee briefly at a photoshoot but we booked under my boyfriend’s name and upon observing the other tables I was assured that they received the same outstanding service as ourselves.

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Clean Eating Alice Eat Well Everyday Recipe Book Tried and Tested

Despite owning quite a few healthy eating cookery books (click here for a roundup of past favourites) I’ve made the meals so many times that I felt in need of some new inspiration. My search led me to Alice Liveing, formerly known as Clean Eating Alice. The pint sized personal trainer’s Instagram account has built a massive following on Instagram thanks to her inspiring posts on fitness and healthy eating. That success has led to 3 books published so far sharing her favourite recipes and workouts.

I chose to buy her first cookbook Eat Well Everyday as it sounded like a good all rounder. The recipes are split into Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and Snack sections with clear bright photos to give you an idea of how the finished meals should look.

The benefit of buying digital versions of cookery books

Whilst I do love flicking through the pages of a beautifully illustrated cookery book I was such an eager beaver that I decided to purchase the digital version of this one. It meant that I could download the book to my devices straight away using the Kindle App, plus it was cheaper than buying a hard copy.

Clean Eating Alice Eat Well Everyday Recipe Book Tried and Tested

I’m starting to think that digital recipe books are the way forward as I’ve found it super handy for days when I haven’t planned any meals in advance. I can flick through the recipes on my phone during my lunch break, choose one that I fancy cooking and then pop to the supermarket on the way home to pick up the bits I need. I don’t even need to write a shopping list as I can just bookmark the page.

Clean Eating Alice Eat Well Everyday Recipe Book Tried and Tested

Overall I’m really pleased that I bought Eat Well Everyday as it’s exactly what I was looking for. The recipes are simple and don’t require too much skill in the kitchen, in most cases just a bit of chopping and food prep. There are lots of exciting ingredients featured in the book such as tahini and ras el hanout which help to pack flavour into the healthy dishes.

Eat Well Everyday Recipes – Tried and Tested

Rather than just telling you that I love this book though (which I do!) I thought I’d show you some of the things I’ve cooked so far and my thoughts on them so that you can get a closer look at the recipes.

Crispy Courgette Fritters with Smoked Salmon

Clean Eating Alice Eat Well Everyday Recipe Book Tried and Tested

This recipe appealed to me as it takes the humble courgette and gives it an exciting makeover. It’s simple enough to prep and make, just cut the courgette into batons, dip them in egg and oats and then fry them in a little bit of oil in a pan. Nothing else needs any cooking, it’s served with chopped spinach, smoked salmon, wedges of lemon and seasoning, so it’s quick to whip up at any time of day.

I found that the courgette fritters were actually rather filling and it looked really healthy which made me FEEL healthier for eating it!

LovedByLaura? Yes I give this a solid 7.5 out of 10!

Roasted Aubergine with Feta, Tahini, Pomegranate and Yoghurt

Clean Eating Alice Eat Well Everyday Recipe Book Tried and Tested

This one split opinions! I really enjoyed the flavour combinations with a burst of tangy feta offset by sweet pomegranate, complimented by a nutty tahini dressing. When I then cooked it a second time for the fella however he said, I quote: “It’s a bit too healthy for my liking!” The abundance of aubergine wasn’t a winner for him.

It took all of 5 minutes to prepare but does take about 40 minutes to bake in the oven so it’s not as quick to whip up as some of the others, but once it’s cooking you can leave it so that’s 40 minutes that you can use to do something productive. Or you can watch Netflix. Both valid choices.

LovedByLaura? Yes – I give this one a tasty 7 out of 10.

LovedByLaura’s Fella? Not so much.

Creamy Puy Lentils with Peas, Feta and Bacon

You might notice that there’s no picture accompanying this one – that’s because I didn’t want to put you off your dinner! It did not turn out like picture…

The problem was that it required 200g Puy lentils which are cooked with other ingredients in a saucepan for 20 minutes and I couldn’t find them at the supermarket so I used red lentils instead. BIG mistake. Huge.

It turns out that whilst Puy lentils keep their form when cooked, red lentils break down. When I lifted the saucepan lid after the allotted time I found that my lentils had turned to mush and looked like a very dodgy coloured mashed potato. Mmm appetising! When I finally plucked up the courage to try the mess I’d created it tasted really good, but I just couldn’t get over the appearance.

LovedByLaura? Not so much, because the main ingredient wasn’t easily found and I had to use a substitute which didn’t work as well. I’ve given it 4 out of 10 because the flavour was good and it showed promise but I wouldn’t attempt it again in a hurry.

Mushroom and Mozzarella Shakshuka

Clean Eating Alice Eat Well Everyday Recipe Book Tried and Tested

This is like a healthy version of a fry up with gooey bits of cheese in it – sold!

I’ll be honest, it’s definitely not in the same league of deliciousness as an actual fry up, but it’s a good enough substitute if you’re trying to lose or maintain your weight. Smoked paprika and cumin give the tomato base more depth and the eggs are an energy boosting source of protein.

LovedByLaura? Yes – another solid 7 out of 10 for easiness to cook and a full up feeling that lasts until your next meal.

My Overall Verdict on Eat Well Everyday by Clean Eating Alice

Overall the recipes in this book are not going to win awards for being the most flavoursome and complex things you’ll ever eat, but if you’re looking for healthy meal inspiration and want to keep your recipes quick, simple and tasty this book is a great place to start!

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