Small Things: #4

The temperature here in London seems to have risen, and, thank goodness, it is now comparatively comfortable to walk to work.  I suspect it will get cooler again soon, but I’m hoping we won’t see any snow this year. If we ever get any here in the UK, it usually arrives in February so I guess there’s still plenty of time. Nonetheless, I’ve still been focusing on keeping healthy, and it’s a lot easier when the weather doesn’t encourage you to take the bus everywhere rather than to walk. Equally, I find it easier to eat better food when the temperature isn’t below freezing…

 1. Sometimes, when you get in from work, nothing beats a steaming mug of Whittards Luxury Hot Chocolate in my personalised Emma Bridgewater mug. | 2. Work this week has been tough, as I’ve been dealing with a bad back and an extra large workload. Knowing this, my Mum has been texting me pictures of my cats. Here’s a morning portrait of Eddie. | 3. I’ve really been trying to improve my desk lunches and this salad with Slow Roasted Tomato, Cabbage, Kale and Brown rice was particularly tasty. | 4. I don’t have Chocolate cravings very often but when one hit me this week, these Chocolate Ganache Brownies (made with store cupboard ingredients) were the perfect solution. | 5. When a stray aubergine made its way into my fridge, I tried out Caponata – a Sicilian Aubergine stew. It was particularly good with cous cous for lunch the next day. | 6.  My usual pay day treat: a Lush bubble bar. This one was called Blue Skies and Fluffy White Clouds.

I’ve already mentioned a couple of times that I’m really trying to improve the way I eat and my relationship with food. As part of that, I recently arranged for a weekly organic vegetable box to be delivered by Abel & Cole. So far, I’ve received two of their small ‘Very Veggie’ boxes.

Now, I have to say that this has not been without ‘hitches’. The first box they delivered was left outside my apartment building and, being in SW London, it was promptly stolen by one of my neighbours. When I called Abel & Cole to query why the driver thought leaving it outside was wise, they were quick to issue a refund and the next week’s box was delivered to my door. Although I can’t fault their customer service, having the first box stolen was not a particularly positive experience for a new customer. My advice to anyone ordering from them who lives in apartment would be to specify that they ring your door phone. They’re delivered early (around 5am here) but if you want to receive them, that’s probably the best way to completely ensure that you do.

 

My first box (above) was okay. The box included: Plum Tomatoes, Lettuce, Red Cabbage, Carrots, Aubergine, Celery and a bulb of Garlic. I was quite disappointed to see that the Red Cabbage half had already started to turn brown when I received it, but the rest of the vegetables were lovely, crisp and fresh.

 

The second box – which I received on Friday for use this week – was a better mix and the vegetable quality is great. I got: Beetroot, Baby Gem Lettuces, Courgettes, Cherry Tomatoes, Broccoli, Carrots and White Onions. I’m enjoying the challenge of finding recipes for different ingredients every week. For example, I’ve never tried fresh beetroot (only the pickled kind) so I think I’ll roast a couple and turn the rest into soup. I’d love to hear if you have tips for being creative with seasonal vegetables!

Well, that’s it for this week. I’m off to continue with some sock knitting; it has made me so content lately and it’s so hard to put it down once I’ve done a few rows. Indeed, I’m expecting a sock yarn delivery from Amazon this afternoon, which I hope to showcase later this week. As for this afternoon, asides from knitting  I think I might bake some Blueberry Muffins and prepare a veggie-laden lunch for work tomorrow. Oh, and crash out in front of Netflix of course!

How are you spending Sunday?

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