Wednesday 29 October 2014

Hint o' Halloween

This Monday, in anticipation of Friday's hair-raisin' happenings,  my not-so-fearsome flatmates and I prepped and presented a humble Halloween evening with the lovely lot that live a few doors down from us. The sartorial interpretations of the night's "black tie with a hint of Halloween" theme were varied and impressive, ranging from my burgundy-lipped look with día de los muertos style maxi, to a stunning star-embellished ensemble from a certain Lucy Iron. 

Our cute crib was transformed into a veritable haunted house, comprising of carefully draped cobwebs (apologies Mr Beckham), bloody prosthetic hands and dislodged - jelly - eyeballs. The sinister scene was even accompanied by a bunch of good (almost) clean games, including the old school mummy wrap contest and guest-specific clandestine challenges. 

Gastronomy-wise, we went for a simple but seasonal starter of ghoulish guacamole and creepy crudités, presented very much in keeping with the night's overriding vibe. These were followed up by a not-so-novelty main of chicken rollatini with spinach alla parmigiana (piri piri smoked mackerel for pesky pescetarian me), served with new potatoes and a splendiferous side salad. For the formidable - in both senses of the word - finale, strawberries were served up with a ghost-shaped white chocolate coating, as well as gold-spritzed mini pumpkin pies, handmade by Miss Amy SW. 

Suffice it to say that we all had a bloody (ha) brilliant eve, spent with the finest folk I coulda wished for. Indeed, if Monday night's events were any indication of the memory makin' to come, this final uni year's gonna be far from gruesome.

Friday 24 October 2014


In celebration of that fine Friday feelin', set your ears on this sweet audible indulgence from Mr Gregory Porter, radiantly remixed by French mixing master 20syl. TGIF to you too.

Saturday 18 October 2014

Home is where your sh*t is

Another month, another dwelling to call (viz. make) my own. Against the backdrop of my quasi-nomadic existence of late, it's been quite the novelty being able to unpack for a slightly more extended period than has been customary to me over the past year or so. Further, with my nerdy disposition to design, I always revel in the opportunity to put my own lil stamp on fresh, blank spaces. So I'm doing just that. While very much an in-progress pursuit, I'm quite haps with the petite progression being made with my latest lovely lodging: here's a peek to date.

Tuesday 14 October 2014

This week I'm lovin'

Though pretty Duz is somewhat limited when it comes to quality coffee independents, their few and far between presence makes high-grade caffeine haunts all the more cherished within the lil Durham bubble. Flat White is one such - if not the - gem, sourcing their beans from local artisan roastery Ouseburn Coffee. Conveniently (or perhaps dangerously) located en route to uni every morning, the sought-after spot has been mollycoddling me through the rather disorientating return to academic life with their first-class flat whites. Clue's in the name. 

Thursday 9 October 2014

Miso obsessed

As I somewhat begrudgingly accept the decreasing temps with the dawn of autumn/winter, the staple summer salads I've been reaching for over the past couple of months just don't quite satisfy. Enter the need for a spot of internal heating in gastronomic form. But, while conventional comfort foods are the ultimate kinda comfort (duh) during this crisp weather phase, fast-paced schedules and short lunch periods - whether at school, uni, work or otherwise - often make heavy midday meals a touch inconvenient when it comes to swerving sluggishness and preserving productivity throughout the afternoon. 

Happily, though, I seem to have found the perfect compromise: hello, miso soup. Don't get me wrong, I haven't just discovered this magical little superfood, but a certain miso delivery service has stirred up a freshly found fancy for the Asian soybean-derived paste. As the name divulges, Miso Tasty provides super flavoursome fare and sends it straight to your door. Honestly, you'd be hard pressed to find something not to love about this humble UK-born brand; the country's first dedicated miso company, as it happens. Having recently been introduced to Miso Tasty, I am now an out-and-out convert to miso home delivery - can't say I saw that coming. 

While on face value this might all sound rather exorbitant - I'm still a prudent student after all - if you break it down it amounts to less than £1 per serving; more keenly priced than ya might think. Delivered in bento style boxes of eight, the pastes come in both 'Classic' and 'Spicy Aka' varieties, all accompanied by petite packets of umami, spring onion and wakame seaweed. They're light in both senses of the word, making the sachets a handy and portable go-to at any time of day; all you need is a kettle and a vessel. Being as well-seasoned as they are, the pastes even work as a spice-infused stock or spread. And, crucially for my (petty) proclivity for packaging, the brand's design and tone is both friendly and inviting. I'm in.

Wednesday 1 October 2014

Beach please

It's not so grim up north. While the post-Berlin blues are yet to dissipate (they won't), it would be pretty inaccurate to say I haven't also relished being back on native turf. After an all too fleeting London return, I headed north-east to catch up with the much missed Geordie fam and enter my final year of unay. First stop? Childhood playground and now Nanna's actual back garden, beautiful Whitburn beach. 

Excuse the cobbled-together nature of the little vlog above (not my finest), but I thought it would be nice to capture the spirit of our Sunday stroll in a more animated - albeit rather haphazard -  manner. Along with some more serene stills, naturally.