Coconut, Lime & Nuts Crusted Seafood

Friday, 18 December 2015

One of my favourite hobbies when I am on my own (and with no access to the internet) is to think what I would do if I would win the lottery. Sometimes I dream I win 5 million, sometimes is more. The figure gets so big that I lost count of how much I've won really. But it is a dream so I wonder it does not matter.

I really enjoy wondering about how I would spend the money. And most of times I end up giving the money away to other people. I buy nice presents to the people I know, I randomly pay for the shopping that complete strangers is doing in the supermarket, I give money to people that have a dream to fulfil, and in general I spend the money in a million ways so everyone is a bit happier. I also save some for me, so I can do an amazing trip around the world.

But don´t get too excited, because the reality is that I never buy lottery.

Cava, Berries & Bacon Brussels Sprouts

Friday, 11 December 2015

Only 18 days till Christmas! I can’t believe is that time of the year already! It’s so close I can almost taste it.

Things have been pretty busy over here at Tiny Marmalade HQ and I've started to wonder where I can find my own elves to help with jamming, labelling and packing up all your orders! I'm so super excited about Christmas this year, not that I'm ever not ... any excuse to eat all the foods! 

There is absolutely no question; Christmas is MY favourite time of the year.

I love the lights and the decorations, the music, the carols, the smell of mulled wine and mince pies, drinking hot chocolate and wearing mittens

I love shopping for gifts. I love seeing people's faces unwrapping presents. I love secret Santa games and pulling Christmas Crackers,

And I absolutely love spending time with friends and family. Playing board games. Crafting. Talking about the same old stories, like that year Santa left me a Mariachi outfit under the tree. Yes, I'm not making that up. I was 16th and all I got for Christmas was a Mariachi outfit. A proper one with its hat and a Tequila bottle. I still don't really know what Father Christmas was trying to tell me.

Kale, Pomegranate, Nuts & Quinoa Salad

Friday, 4 December 2015

I know what you are thinking.

"Paloma, it's almost Christmas, you should be preparing cakes no kale salads".

You may be right. 

The first time I saw kale in a supermarket I thought it was a sort of mistake. Or maybe some rabbit food someone put in the wrong place. Let's face it, kale is not the sexiest of vegetables. But all at a sudden, kale was everywhere. From super posh dishes to fast food sandwiches.

If it’s possible for something to be trending in the world of vegetables, it’s kale. Even if you’re not a foodie or health conscious, it’s been hard to avoid. Its green leaves are all the rage, flying off supermarket shelves and into the hands of the health-conscious like there's no tomorrow. 

Yellow Beetroot & Goats Cheese Quiche

Friday, 27 November 2015

I'm really tempted to buy one of those "no junk mail" signs. Honestly, you won't believe the amount of junk mail that gets pushed through my front door on a weekly basis. You know, local free weekly paper stuffed with the usual rubbish.  This week's inventory includes a couple of Indian restaurants booklets, one massive pizza restaurant voucher, a local shopping centre Christmas voucher, 3 Chinese restaurants leaflets, 4 envelopes for the home-owner, a state agents card, the local neighbour newspaper, 2 booklets with local services advertising, a couple of invites to join different religions, and a leaflet about a credit card I definitely can't afford. And exactly 23 copies of the same letter from Virgin Media. Twenty three. And that´s only this week.

Victoria Sponge Cake

Friday, 20 November 2015

This week I would like to talk about talent. Talent is one of those things that is quite obvious for everybody while you don´t know you have it.

The reason is simple: it takes you very little effort to do what everyone else seems to find absolutely amazing. This is why people tend to undervalue their talents.

Gin, Rhubarb & Strawberry Crumble

Friday, 13 November 2015

I have started running again.

Yes, I´m incorrigible.

But this time there is something different that is keeping me extra motivated (and extra hooked): a mobile app that tracks my runs and gives me statistics of how I'm doing compared to my previous runs and, most important, compared to my friends. 

And here is the crux of the matter. Yes, because the problem of running is that you are normally not competing against anyone but yourself. And how boring is that. If you cannot left someone biting the dust after a run, what's the point?

Parsnips & Mascarpone Soup

Friday, 6 November 2015

A couple of weeks ago we decided to join a local organic vegetable box scheme. Basically, you pay a fixed amount of money every week and they send you a box full of seasonal, fresh and organic vegetables, milk and eggs.

I was a bit unsure about it, as I like shopping and choose whatever I fancy eating that week.

However, after a couple of weeks receiving it, I must admit it has been absolutely brilliant. Every Wednesday, a surprise box is waiting for me in my front door. Everyone gets really excited while we discover what veggies have we been given this week. Not to talk about the slugs hunt around the kitchen!

Pumpking & Pecan Squares

Friday, 30 October 2015

Pumpkin carving can be a lot of fun, but much of the pumpkin can go to waste if you're not creative. The flesh is often used to make a puree for a pie or some other treat, but you may wonder what to do with the stringy pumpkin guts. When carving a pumpkin for Halloween, don't throw out the pumpkin guts; put them to some unexpected uses around the house.

Read more :
Pumpkin carving can be a lot of fun, but much of the pumpkin can go to waste if you're not creative. The flesh is often used to make a puree for a pie or some other treat, but you may wonder what to do with the stringy pumpkin guts. When carving a pumpkin for Halloween, don't throw out the pumpkin guts; put them to some unexpected uses around the house.

Read more :
Following last week´s post, I have been quite reluctant to get too involved in any the shocking Halloween activities going on around us. However, I wanted to find some a bit more appealing activities as the boys were really keen on doing something together. 

Today we´ve dressed up and have took part in 1k Halloween Fun Run. I was a bit skeptical about it, but I must admit it has been absolutely great! Lots of runners most of them dressed up with home made costumes. Lanterns, spiders, witches and a run through the park in a lovely autumn evening. The boys have done amazingly well, running nonstop all way long. They´ve been given a medal and a banana with a phantom face. And we´ve come back home happily tired and feeling proud of ourselves. 

Seriously Spooky Stuffed Peppers

Friday, 23 October 2015

I don’t particularly like Halloween.

Halloween decorations are tacky and expensive. Who enjoys having plastic versions of maimed bodies around the house?

It is definitely my least favourite holiday of the year. And a tradition I really don’t get.

Without going through why I believe the original meaning of the whole thing has been completely distorted from a season of reflection and remembrance into yet another commercial strategy. One that gives people (as if we need it) another reason to consume compulsively.

And if I don't give you something to consume, you are now welcome to egg my house.

Okay, no please don’t.

Apricot & Stilton Wholemeal Buns

Friday, 16 October 2015

I can't stop thinking about my next holidays. I love browsing through the airlines websites and play with different combinations of dates and destinations. I read travel blogs and I wonder whether their authors make a life of it or just have enough money to travel around the world constantly.

I wish I could do that. Like spending 3 months going all over Latin America, from Buenos Aires to Rio, meeting new people, making new friends, relaxing in a lost paradise in Brazil or celebrating All Saints Day in Mexico. Or going to Japan for a geek Studio Ghibli route, eating sushi and enjoying the amazing cherry blossom season.

Pear & Cobnuts Crumble

Friday, 9 October 2015

Autumn is finally here. Colourful leaves, rainy days and board games evening. I love autumn. It makes me feel a bit melancholic. As soon as I see the leaves starting to to turn and feel the air getting crisper, it fills me with a warm fuzzy feeling and all my childhood memories come flooding back.

Last summer we decided to finally move all our belongings were kept in dusty boxes in my in-laws' home in Spain for years. Yesterday, the van arrived and around 30 boxes were stacked up in my living room.

I started opening them with excitement. I discovered an old music box my dad gave me when I was around 8; all my childhood books that I will now read to my children; some tin toys that I absolutely love; letters, cards and notes from people I can't remember. Everything, my entire life was in these boxes.

Second Anniversary!

Friday, 2 October 2015

Today more than ever I’m glad you are here.

Two years ago today I published my first post. A shy, short and not very good post that became the beginning of this adventure.

I remember how excited I was. Full of ideas, dreams and goals to achieve.

Two years ago, The Tiny Marmalade was born. A crazy project that started due to a variety of reasons. A project that has fulfilled most of my entrepreneurial dreams, where all my ideas had a place to be. But more important, a project that has proved myself that I’m able to create beautiful things when my self-esteem was really poor and my self-confidence really needed it.

This year a lot of amazing (and not so amazing) things have happened to me.

Raspberry & Cream Roly Polys

Friday, 25 September 2015

Thanks everyone for your nice emails and messages after last week entry. They really comforted me. The surgery went very well, the staff was unbelievably nice and friendly and it didn't hurt that badly (little voice in my head saying “I told you”).

However, I'm a wimpy person, and I busted into tears as soon as the nurse said my name. At least they didn't ask me to wear one of those foul hospital gowns. Thanks NHS for that!

Heirloom Tomatoes & Goat Cheese Salad

Friday, 18 September 2015

Last week I went to the doctor. I have a fair amount of moles, freckles and birth marks all over my body and I wanted someone to check everything was ok. I was concerned for a mole in my back in particular, which is quite big.

The doctor inspected my skin centimetre by centimetre while I was feeling a bit uncomfortable for such an exhibition in front of a perfect stranger.

The mole on my back was fine. Not so much another one in my leg. Apparently one of the moles looked suspicious. And he asked me to come back and get it removed, so they can do a biopsy.

Chorizo & Manchego Soda Bread

Friday, 11 September 2015

If you have been reading my blog for a while, you will probably know about my personal battle against exercising. If you haven’t, you can read a bit here and here (and prepare an amazing Rocky Road by the way!)

I've been recently given an annual membership card for my local gym. I need to thank my husband’s company for this (thanks!). This allows me to take part in every single session every single day of the year. Far too much pressure. So after a couple of weeks finding perfect excuses not to go, yesterday I decided to start working out.

As I haven’t been doing much for a while, I've ended up having the flexibility of an 80-year-old man. I can’t touch my toes. In perfect honesty… I can barely touch my knees. So, in order to do things right this time, I thought about starting with something relaxing and not too difficult. Yoga seemed just the right thing for me. 

Candied Ginger & Custard Croissants

Friday, 4 September 2015

Another school year has started. Uniforms ready, shoes shining, backpacks loaded.

My 3,5 years old is starting his second year at pre-school. He loves it. We originally requested part time sessions for him last year, but after a couple of months we had to put him full time as he was getting really upset to be missing all the exciting things that were happening as soon as we picked him up. He has been asking when is he starting pre-school again all summer.

 My 5 years old is starting year 1. He doesn't like changes much. He likes school, but I don’t think is really looking forward to it. The unknown makes him feel anxious.

I remember how much I loved going to school when I was a child. Summer looked such a long time and I ended up being really bored to be at home. I loved studying, playing with my friends and being busy doing crafts, maths, and reading. But one day, that changed.

Cheese & Walnuts Stuffed Chicken

Friday, 28 August 2015

My holidays have sadly come to an end. That's it. No more sangria, no more siesta, no more tapas... no more sun, even if the calendar still says it is August around here. It has been pouring non-stop since we came back. I have unpacked my 3 bikinis with tears in my eyes, with the uncertainty of when I will use them again.

So I've decided to write down a list of things you can do to come back from holidays without drowning in despair.

Monterias or Stuffed Mussels

Friday, 21 August 2015

This week we've been visiting my husband's family and friends. They live in Cazorla, one of the most amazing villages in Andalucia, Southern Spain. Boasting an abundance of wildlife, breathtaking scenery, crystal clear rivers & tranquil alpine meadows, Cazorla is a charming place.

Covering over 2,000 km2, it is the largest protected reserve in Spain and the second largest in Europe. It was declared a biosphere reserve by UNESCO in 1983.

Two of the Spain’s most important rivers, the Guadalquivir and the Segura, have their sources in Cazorla. Water is abundant in the park, with innumerable crystal clear, trout-filled rivers winding their way through some of the wildest scenery in Spain.

Courgette & Date Bread

Friday, 14 August 2015

We are on holidays!!! Yay!!! I'm sleeping so much that my muscles ache. I'm eating more than I should. I'm having fun. I'm not getting worried about anything. I'm visiting family and friends. I'm remembering how bloody hot Spain is.

Honestly, really hot. Almost unbearable.

Quite often my British friends ask me what took me to swap the sun for the rain. Well, if you were here with me at the mo, you wouldn't need me to answer that question.

Anchovies, Capers & Swiss Chard Tartlets

Friday, 7 August 2015

I love barbecues. The whole ritual around it, the great atmosphere of real charcoal, lighting the fire, a glass (or two) of pimms, the smell of grilled meat and vegetables, talking with friends around the ashes. 

But, sadly enough, I have never had one. Until last weekend. 

Apricot and Almond Tart

Friday, 31 July 2015

This week I'm a really excited and proud mummy. My son has learned to ride a bike!! A couple of months ago he was given a bike that he absolutely loved. He has been taking the bike to the park, without trying to ride it. Just walking with it to the park and back. Despite my best efforts, explaining how to ride a bike verbally to a 5-year-old boy didn't work for either of us.

Something I was not keen on was the use of stabilisers. I really think they are useless, as they make you learn to ride a bike twice: firstly with, then without. I am obviously not an expert, but I believe having stabilisers prevents the child from learning intuitively where their balance point is. But after a couple of months, I started to wonder whether I was completely wrong and the stabilisers were the key.

Strawberry & Blueberry No-Bake Cake

Friday, 24 July 2015

Since I started this blog a lot of you have told me you won't try to prepare the recipes by yourself no matter how easy they look in the blog. The reason? It looks like you don't believe you will be able to do it. I always answer the same: they are really easy recipes, and if you don't give them a go then you will never find out.

A couple of weeks ago I saw amazing pictures from a recipe in Facebook. It was a berries no bake cheesecake and looked sooo easy to make that I thought, why not?

I bought all the ingredients and prepared it. Step by step. For goodness sake, it was even called "easy" no bake cheesecake!

Roasted Baby Summer Vegetables

Friday, 17 July 2015

I have to admit that I have always felt massively attracted by miniature versions of normal things. Miniature doll house furniture, miniature perfume bottles, babies, kittens and of course miniature jam jars. When I see a miniature I normally shout in an emotional outburst.... HOW CUTE IS THIS!?

Well, not always always. There are situations where big is certainly better... I believe this blog is really wrecking my reputation.

Anyway, I find miniature things so cute and fascinating that I even have a Pinterest board!

Farmhouse Beef Broth

Friday, 10 July 2015

After my little rant last week, I have decided to stop moaning, lead by example and take action to help change the world for the better.

I have been reading a lot of blogs and watching youtube videos. I just wanted to prove myself that doing our bit was not that difficult. That there are lots of people out there thinking the same. Doing things for other. Trying to change the world.

Panna Cotta With Raspberries

Friday, 3 July 2015

These days I see astonished how half of people persist in trying to destroy the world and make us feel ashamed of being part of the human being, while the other half fight tooth and nail for human rights, equality and justice.

Every morning when I wake up I hope the world will be a little better. I hope that those who insist on having their eyes closed, obsessed with what they think is the only valid idea, finally decide to open them.

Camembert Quesadillas with Guacamole Dip

Friday, 26 June 2015

Summer is almost here, and with summer comes the inevitable School Sports Day. Sports Day is when the school invites parents to watch their kids doing all sorts of physical activities like passing a bean bag over their heads or racing with an egg on a spoon with no apparent reason, as in most of schools Sports Day has become a non-competitive day.

Some parents have really become professionals in the art of moaning about Sports Day. And after this post I believe I will need to add my name to the list.

I am not a fan of sports and neither any of my kids is extremely sporty (or not sporty at all), however they both enjoy running, climbing, jumping and feeling wild in general.

Baked Figs & Serrano Tagliatelle

Friday, 19 June 2015

Do you have any quirks? I do. Lots of them. I love to wear my pyjamas inside out, to spread butter on the edges of my toast and to create spreadsheets for everything.  But probably my most remarkable one is the way I do shopping.

I really have a fixation with shopping organisation, starting from where and where not to park in the supermarket. Because of course, more than a 30 seconds walk from the car until the sliding door is far too long to be walked. I always pick a trolley, it doesn't matter if I only need a bag of crisps, I have to pick it just in case. If I've managed to park near one of those trolleys in the car park, I can't pick any of them. It needs to be one right next to the supermarket door and of course, I would never ever pick one with rubbish, a ticket or someone else's shopping list.

Biscuits & Chocolate Birthday Cake

Friday, 12 June 2015

Happy birthday to me! 

I'm turning 34 today. 34. Twentytfourteen. 

I always have mixed feelings when my birthday is approaching. I'm happy, but I also feel sad. I know I've been lucky enough to live for a whole year but that also means I'm a year older. This always ends up with me feeling a bit miserable the week before, pretending I'm feelingless the previous day, and overexcited as soon as the sun rises on the 12th. Don't blame me, I'm a Gemini. 

This morning I've woke up being 34th years old, and I say this without cringing. 34, wow. That is a lot of years!

Tufahija, Bosnian Poached Apples

Friday, 5 June 2015

I love travelling. I have always been passionate about discovering new places, meeting new people and getting lost in the world. I used to travel with no much organisation, apart from a round-trip ticket (sometimes not even that!), a backpack and a Lonely Planet.

One of the best things about travelling is discovering new foods. I'm the kind of person that looks for the less touristy looking place, and asks for the most bizarre stuff in the menu.

This has ended up with me eating bats with spaghetti, venison tongue, beef brains or crispy intestines. I must admit they were all quite nice. The trick is not to ask what you are actually eating until you've finished your plate.

Superfood Fruit & Quinoa Salad

Friday, 29 May 2015

My 3 years old wants to be a chef. Since he was just 6 months old he likes to play with pans, pots and wooden spoons. Last Christmas he asked Father Christmas for a blender and a kneading machine. When he got his toys, he said “they are great, but next year I would ask for a real one!”. He has a great toy kitchen and can spend hours preparing the most amazing dishes ever and then offering them to us to try.

When we “eat” his creations exclaiming how delicious they are, he looks at you, earnestly, and says “mummy, is not real food, is just pretending”. Fair enough.

I can’t be around the kitchen without having him next to me, asking me what am I doing, following me everywhere willing to help.

Slow Cooked Pork Cheeks Casserole

Friday, 22 May 2015

You know when you need to go shopping but you really don’t fancy eating anything at all so you just rumble through the aisles putting random things in your trolley? Me neither.

It is usually all the way round, because even if I know I should not go shopping at lunch time or when I'm feeling hungry, I really can’t help myself. So every time I end up going to the supermarket and buying an awful lot more of what I have on my list. Shame on me.

One evening last week it was a bit late and we realized we were running out of milk, so with the excuse that everything else was closed or about to, I went to my favourite supermarket. I don’t normally go there because prices are quite high, but this time I only needed milk. What could happen? I told to myself: you just go in there, walk straight away to the fridge, pick the milk, pay, and leave. Do not look, do not stop, do not make a detour.

I could go to the reduced to clear fridge, couldn't I? Grabbing a bargain won’t hurt anyone… This is how good I am at lying to myself.

Mango, Coconut & Curry Tiffin

Friday, 15 May 2015

Dinner parties are one of life’s greatest pleasures and I absolutely love having friends at home. I always try to make them feel warm and welcomed, and although I generally feel quite nervous because I want everything to be perfect, I try to have everything ready before they come so I can enjoy a relaxed evening.

Something I've discovered recently is how different dinner parties are in Spain from the ones I've been invited in the UK.

In Spain, you would never know when people is going to arrive to your home. You may say "dinner starts at 9.00 pm", and people will start arriving around 10.30. If someone dares to arrive on time, they will probably find you in the shower, starting to prepare the dinner or watching TV in your pyjamas because you have completely forgotten about it.

Mini Apple Rose Tarts

Friday, 8 May 2015

Hi. I’m still here. Feeling a bit rubbish, to be perfectly honest. Last week I missed a recipe. Technically I really didn't. I cooked it, I took really nice pictures for you. It was indeed a very nice and easy one I specially baked for you all. But then, life happened, and I couldn’t publish it.

I was left without internet. 

I must admit it was quite tough at the beginning. I was not sure I could cope without internet. I spent the first day asking constantly: how has the human being survived so many years without internet? I went desperately from hotspot to hotspot, fighting with endless registration process in exchange for just a weak signal not even able to download a humble picture.

So I threw the towel. No mobile, no Facebook, no Twitter, no Pinterest… no blog. And only when I was starting to recover from the shock, I got six of one and half a dozen of the other.

Peach & Coconut Cheescake

Friday, 24 April 2015

I would like to make a confession. It is something that I normally try not to talk about, as every time I suggest anything like this in public, I can feel everyone’s head turning and looking at me with disapproval. So when the conversation is around this particular matter, I limit myself to a nod and a smile.

The thing is… I don’t do a lot of things I am supposed to do. And I don’t do them on purpose: because they are tedious, painful (in the broadest sense of the word), useless or all three at once. So when I am surrounded by people who do these kind of things and I suggest I don’t, I feel the need to hold me breath and then pretend I was only joking and everything goes back to normal.

Creamy Fish & Leak Mini Pies

Friday, 17 April 2015

Last weekend the weather was so absolutely amazing that everyone in my household woke up thinking it was summer. And as it was summer, we packed our lunches, dusted off our swimsuits, and off we went to Exmouth beach. Two miles of golden sandy beach just 20 minutes’ drive from home.

The beach was not jam-packed, but busy enough to make us feel really summery. Rock pools, crab hunters, shiny skins, sand castles and lots of children.

If anything in life changes after having children is the way you get ready for a beach day.

Lemon Curd & Coconut Cups

Friday, 10 April 2015

Sometimes life gives us lemons.  I know when this happens we are supposed to do lemonade, but if there is something I could be eating nonstop is a good lemon curd. So instead of lemonade, when life gives me lemons... I ask my husband to prepare lemon curd for me.

Home-made lemon curd is one of these recipes he only knows how to prepare. Yes, I may be able to prepare a decent version of lemon curd, but it will never taste as my husband´s. He is a Master of the Universe preparing proper lemon curd: sweet, tangy, soft, velvety and mouthwatering. So although  It´s me who normally cooks at home, there are three things that are completely his kingdom: curds, mayonnaise and chicken milanese. 

Caramelised Onion, Potato and Broccoli Rosti

Friday, 3 April 2015

During our childhood we barely dream because we have no reason for it, as almost everything is possible. Nevertheless, in adulthood, we need to fantasise quite a lot as nothing really exciting seems to happen, apart from making sure our socks match.  During our childhood and adolescence we run faster than our own feet. Fearless youngsters, wild, reckless. Insatiable of experience,  eager of knowing everything, conquers of the world. 

Innocent and naïve, the world taught us, maybe more than we wanted or needed or hoped or thought possible. And then, sometimes, we become so immune to everything that we put ourselves in extreme situations just to have something to dream about. One day we have children. We will love them, and look with excitement knowing they will discover the world, how everything is new for them, amazing, possible and so real and simple that is almost impossible not to start feeling scared. Because we have been there. Maybe a long long time ago. And things arise that were forgotten, that were safety kept under a pile of memories and worries.

Crisps & Chocolate Rocks

Friday, 27 March 2015

Sometimes things just get out of our control. Perhaps it is so obvious that we are unable to see how wrong they are going even if they explode right in front of our eyes.

It can also happen that we feel so confident that something is going to be fine that we don’t even consider the possibility of anything other than success. Sometimes things look good. Very good indeed, and all of a sudden, it all turns awfully wrong.

 There is no definite pattern when the wrecking ball starts, which makes it really difficult to foresee the disaster. Or even worse, when we rely on other people and they don’t give you the heads up on something that is not going as well as it should.

When things depend on the others it seems easier to look from a distance and find an easy solution. But sometimes, the other is just so overwhelmed by the circumstances that is not able to look through the same glasses that we do.

Gardener Muffins with Garlic Mayo

Friday, 20 March 2015

Children are just unpredictable. My sons are at this amazing age when everything is possible. From flying to the moon on a kitchen stool to inventing a magic ball powerful enough to provide the whole city with unlimited energy.

We have been working really hard for The Big Cake Show and they are so excited all the time that it is literally impossible to relax them at bed time.

Yesterday, it was a bit too late. And they were both in my bed chatting non-stop. Sometimes, the things they are telling me are the kind of things that are so interesting and fantastic that rather than try and stop them, I encourage them to keep talking so I can hear more about whatever the story is about. But it was getting really late and we all needed a good rest, so I asked them to calm down and try to sleep while I went to brush my teeth.

Scrumptious Star Bread

Friday, 13 March 2015

A couple of weeks ago I was invited to do a guest lecture at the Business School at Exeter Uni. I was absolutely shocked and excited and nervous and overwhelmed. Preserving fruit is one thing and talking in front of a lot of 4th year business students about creativity and entrepreneurship is a an altogether different beast.

I was unsure of the kind of things they were expecting me to say, so I thought I should say the kind of things that I would have loved to listen to when I was at Uni. Stories about failure, about struggling, about real life. Stories about how life changes and you can choose between letting yourself down or face up to the challenge and go for it. Stories about why we are all wrongly told that success is the only way forward. So instead of going through sleep-inducing theories and approaches from the different schools of thought, I just told them the truth about The Tiny Marmalade.

Marble Mini Loaves

Friday, 6 March 2015

Technology I hate you. I abhor you so much that I going to blog it. To tweet it. To Facebook it. I am even going to gloogleplus it. Whatever that is. To let everyone know how deep my hate is.

I thought I could rely on you. I really did. I entrusted you my best kept secrets. We were together in the good times, as when you showed me that photography digital edition could be a 5 minutes job. Also in the bad ones, as when someone thought that giving me a Windows 7 mobile was a good idea.

I can still remember with excitement that day I discovered I could write "BOOBIES" in a calculator. I felt amazingly successful. The world was my oyster.

Super Zesty Lemon Snaps #12week

Friday, 27 February 2015

Experimentation has its limits. This is the lesson I learnt last weekend while I was pretending to be a super chef plotting the preparation of a recipe which would revolutionary modern cuisine as we know it. Oblivious to all reason, I wanted to innovate in a field in which I am not particularly adept, experiencing consistent and resounding failure: biscuit making.

Things were as follows.

Pate, Potato and Mushrooms Stuffed Aubergines

Friday, 20 February 2015

My other half and I have been wondering about buying a house for quite a long time now. We would like to have our very own space, our refuge. We would like to have that special place to build up family memories, to see our children grow, to grow older together. We dream of each room in it: which colour the walls will be, which kind of handles the kitchen units will have, whether or not blue is a good colour for the boys’ bedroom. Decisions, decisions.

We have been visiting some properties. Masses of properties actually. Some nice, some not really, and some that should have made the estate agents feel embarrassed of showing. Over the last couple of years we haven’t found that house that has made us think "that´s the one". Until a couple of weeks ago, when we visited one that ticked all the boxes, including maybe the most tricky one: the budget.

So we started the ball rolling and have come across the most painful, tedious, bureaucratic and long-winded process ever.

Life Changing Pancakes

Friday, 13 February 2015

Next week is Shrove Tuesday, or most commonly known as Pancake Day. This is something completely new to us that has been, however, rapidly incorporated into our family save-the-date calendar.

Before living in the UK not only had we never celebrated pancake day, but also I can´t remember preparing pancakes myself ever. Not that I don´t like them, but blame the pan, blame the recipe, I have only managed to prepare lumpy, chewy, bland and shapeless pancakes. So last year, to celebrate our first Pancake Day I bought one of those already made mixes (shame on me) that did the job but that´s it.

Valentine´s Heart Throbs

Friday, 6 February 2015

Thank you. I have so many things to be grateful for. Before meeting you I always laughed about love at first sight. And then it happened to me, with the most unexpected individual in the most mysterious way. Love is a strange thing, isn’t it? And there I was. Disoriented. Stunned. Bewildered. Like a fool, trying to make you realise I was there. We were really good friends. We laughed and shared our problem-free lives. We drank and danced and talked and walked through every single street of the city. We shared coconut wafers. We discovered the most amazing songs and went to every concert. We played board games. We discussed every single subject and we put the world to rights time and time again. And at some points I felt so scared of how perfect life was that I wanted to spoil it just to check I was still alive. I must admit I did it, trying to lessen the dizziness.

Mashed Potato Bombs #12week

Friday, 30 January 2015

This year I have not written any New Year´s resolution. Amongst many other reasons, because I would probably have failed to keep any of the resolutions within one week. As I’ve done for the last… erm… many years.

As you can read here, I love lists. . So after being absolutely amazed by a project from the inspirational Moorea Seal called 52 Week Project, I decided to start the 12 Week Project,

I thought it was a brilliant idea, and because I love lists, I honestly believed it was going to be an easy one.

How wrong I was. "List the words that touch your soul" was the first list challenge I have faced.

Zucchini Noodles

Friday, 23 January 2015

My two sons are normally very good eaters. Apart from a couple of things, which I really don´t like much myself, they eat almost everything. I was like that when I was a child. I have always enjoyed a good lunch, my most favourite being fried eggs with French fries and homemade garlic mayonnaise. Yum.

However, when my husband was a child he was really picky, which provides the whole family with endless amusement. My mum-in-law enjoys telling us time and time again stories about how she had to blend everything to make him eat something. Apparently, he liked to read house decor magazines, which she used to take advantage of to fatten him up. But her joy didn't last long, as he was a keen page turner and, no matter he was only 2, if she dared to give him the same magazine twice, he would refuse to eat for the day. But like the intelligent mum she is, she had other tricks like adding some cheese puffs on top of the mush or even M&Ms!

Chunky Chocolate Leftovers Milkshake

Friday, 16 January 2015

Yes. I do agree. There is something wrong with the title of this post. I have been bashing my head against the wall with this all week. Chocolate I-was-shamefully-unable-to-eat-this-Christmas Milkshake? Chocolate how-can-this-be-possible Milkshake? Chocolate next-time-eat-faster Milkshake? None of them really suited me.

The reality is that sometimes in life, completely unexpected things happen. Like me having chocolate leftovers. Or me, having chocolate leftovers. Or me, having chocolate leftovers. Oh, man, it is so not the usual me!!

But this Christmas that is not the only weird thing that has happened to my household. No, because this Christmas a fairy has moved in with us. A F-A-I-R-Y. A real one.

Christmas Leftovers Croquettes

Friday, 9 January 2015

This Christmas I got a completely unexpected gift. As a friend told me a while ago, Christmas presents are meant to be things you would never buy for yourself but you really fancy having.

Well, that was case the Christmas. Because I’ve been a good girl this year, Father Christmas left a MP3 player under the tree for me. I have never had an MP3 player. I did have a Walkman (oh, the 80s!) and a Discman (oh, the 90s!).

So having a MP3 was the only way forward.

Irish Cream Crème Brûlée

Friday, 2 January 2015

I love lists.

Lists help us to sketch the future and chronicle the past, and they provide order to the chaos in this world. I indeed feel much more peaceful with myself when I’ve got a few lists going.

I do lists for almost everything: what to shop, what to take on our holidays, books I would like to read, things I’ve lent, who to invite to the kid’s birthdays, etc. But I also like to do stupid useless lists of things just for pleasure: names I like, places I would like to visit, possible titles for a best seller, things to do before I die, playlist when you are in love, list of collections I would like to start, words that are hard to spell, and the list of lists goes to infinity and beyond.