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Home Sweet Home

Pretty Pantone

Earlier this month Pantone announced the colour of the year, which for the first time blends two shades together.

Rose Quartz and Serenity are calming and soft colours and they will bring about a relaxing feel to any home. Here’s some inspirational rooms to give you an idea of how you could introduce Pantone’s prettiest colour of the year.

Pantone copy
Home Sweet Home

10 Space-Saving Tips For Your Home

If you’re struggling for space at home fear not, I have compiled my top 10 savvy space-saving tips to help you maximise storage and space.

1. Ditch your bedside table for a shelf

Make effective use of your bedroom wall. Pop a shelf on there and you have a bedside table that saves a ton of space.

bed table

2. Pop your TV on the wall

Another space-saving tip involving your walls. Mount your TV to free up space on your dressing table.

Mounted TV

3. Add a bookshelf 

If you need to create the illusion of taller ceilings invest in a vertical book shelf. It’s a great storage piece and will draw the eye upwards.

Book Shelf

4. Built-in bench

This works great in a kitchen, lounge or dining room. Opt for a bench with a hollow bottom and it can also double up as extra storage.


5. Stick to white

Not only do white walls give a fresh and clean feel, they help to make a room look bigger than it actually is. You can add flashes of colour with cushions, prints and throws.

White living room

6. Keep window ledges clear

We all have photo’s, nice cards, flowers, random objects from your holiday in Spain, but refrain from putting them all on your window ledge. A simple vase with flowers or a set of candles is quite enough.



7. Floor space

Use the space under your bed effectively. Buy some storage boxes if they will fit or use flat pack bags to store clothing.

bed storage

8. Towel storage

Add a rail to your sink to hang hand towels. Roll larger towels and store in drawers or on bathroom shelving.

Towel Rail

9. Use your ceiling 

Buy a pan rack to store pots, pans and other kitchen utensils on. These items take up space in cupboards that you don’t necessarily have. Hang them on a rack and create a country feel and stylish kitchen.


10. Clutter free

Clear your worktops of anything that you don’t use daily, use cupboards and drawers to store all the bits and pieces that don’t need to be out all the time. You’ll be amazed at the difference this makes and the extra space you will create.

Clutter free kitchen

Singha - Jungle curry with grilled venison low res
Food & Drink, The Skinny

Cooking up a treat: Jungle Curry

Ever heard of a jungle curry? Me neither. It sounds pretty tempting though and if you’re in the mood for some serious cooking action this authentic Thai dish is the perfect recipe to impress.

Developed by Andy Oliver, Head Chef at the critically acclaimed Som Saa and Masterchef runner up. Andy has been working with Singha beer to create a range of rather tasty thai recipes with a modern twist. The first one of which is below.

Aprons at the ready everyone.

Jungle curry with grilled venison and green banana

Jungle curries aren’t seen so much on menus over here in the UK but they are great. Herbal, full of fresh vegetables and very spicy.

 Serves 4

Preparation time: 1.5 hours

Cooking time: 25 minutes

For the venison

600g of lean venison haunch or loin meat, trimmed of sinew or gristle

2 tablespoons of fish sauce

pinch of white sugar

For the curry paste

1/2 cup long dried chilies (deseeded, cut into pieces and soaked in water for 15 mins then drained)

10 dry birds eye chilies (seeds left in, soaked in water for 15 minutes and drained)

2 tablespoons grachai root, peeled and chopped (optional)

3 tablespoons sliced lemongrass,

2 tablespoons peeled and sliced galangal

3 tablespoons sliced shallots

3 tablespoons chopped garlic

2-3 coriander roots (or a large handful of ground coriander stems)

1 tablespoon gapi (Thai shrimp paste)

1/2 teaspoon kaffir lime zest (optional)

1 teaspoons black peppercorns

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

For the curry

850ml of chicken stock

4 tablespoons of plain oil (sunflower or similar)

4 tablespoons of fish sauce

Tiny pinch of palm sugar or golden caster sugar

1 large green banana or plaintain, pre boiled (see below)

2 tablespoons of picked pea aubergines

2-3 Thai bird eye chillies, bruised

2 Thai ‘apple’ aubergines, sliced into bite sized wedges

Small handful of Thai long beans or fine green beans

2 tablespoons of peeled grachai, sliced into thin long strips

Small handful of picked thai holy basil leaves, or Thai sweet basil leaves

5-6 fresh or frozen kaffir lime leaves

4 or 5 stalks of fresh green peppercorns (optional)

How to make it:

  1. To make the paste use a heavy pestle and mortar and add the sea salt, drained dried chilies and pound until smooth, now add the rest of the ingredients one by one, pounding until smooth before adding the next.   Once complete set aside for later (this stage can be done up to 2 days in advance).
  2. Now grill the venison: rub the meat with the fish sauce and sugar and charcoal grill (or use a griddle pan) until nicely coloured and medium rare (about 4 – 6 minutes on each side, depending on thickeness of your cut). Allow to rest for 5 minutes then slice into bite sized pieces and set aside.
  3. For the green banana, peel and slice into bite sized pieces and place in a pot of salted cold water. Once the once beings to simmer, turn off the heat and set aside for 5 minutes. The bananas should be cooked but still with a slight bite. Drain and set aside.
  4. To make the curry: add the oil to a pan place on a medium heat and gently fry the curry paste for 5 minutes, stirring to avoid sticking
  5. Add the chicken stock, fish sauce and pinch of sugar then the pea aubergines and kaffir lime leaves, simmer for 3 minutes before adding the apple aubergines, boiled green banana, bruised bird’s eye chillies and fresh green peppercorns (if using).
  6. Simmer for 3-4 more minutes before adding the sliced venison, grachai and basil. Turn off the heat, taste to check the seasoning (add a touch more fish sauce if needed) and serve
  7. Serve with jasmine rice and as part of a shared Thai meal

Thanks to the team at Singha beer for sending this rather delicious recipe.

Food & Drink

Flippin’ Heck

GHI PancakeI love Pancake Day. Mainly because I love pancakes and chocolate, it’s the perfect dessert! Pancake Day is fun too, flipping pancakes in the kitchen with family and friends.

This year I will be in New York for Pancake Day so I gave these delicious pancakes from the Good Housekeeping Institute a go before Shrove Tuesday and I can safely say they are delicious. GHI even sent me some flip tips from acting cookery editor Suzannah Butcher.

Give these a go and enjoy!

This recipe will make 10 pancakes and the prep time is 15 minutes.

Here’s what you’ll need

  • 125g (4oz) plain flour
  • 1 large egg
  • 300ml (1/2 pint) milk
  • 1 teaspoon of butter or oil

Serve with 

  • Ice cream (naughty but so so good)
  • Orange segments

How to make them

1. Put 125g (4oz) plain flour into a food processor, then add 1 large egg and 300ml (½ pint) milk. Mix until smooth – the batter should be the consistency of single cream.

2. If making by hand, sift flour into a large bowl, then make a well in the centre. In a jug, beat the egg and milk. Pour the liquid into the well, gradually drawing in flour from the edge until all the liquid is incorporated. Beat any lumps until they disappear.

3. Transfer batter to a clean jug, cover and leave to rest 30min. Heat a non-stick frying pan over medium heat and brush with a little oil or butter. Pour in a ladleful of batter, quickly swirl it around the pan and tip any excess back into the jug. Once the pancake starts to turn golden around the edges, loosen it and flip with a palette knife or fish slice. Cook until golden on both sides – the first one is always a practice one! Repeat with remaining batter – you should end up with about 10 pancakes.

4. Keep the cooked pancakes covered with a tea towel, to keep them warm while you finish cooking the rest.

5. Fold the pancakes and serve with a scoop of ice cream and segments of oranges

Enjoy immediately!