A Postcard to myself: from Oslo

This is a rather self-indulgent post, to allow me to remember a wonderful weekend with some of my favourite people in the world. It wasn’t the weekend of partying it might have been just 5 years ago. It was quiet, and peaceful, nourishing, indulgent and slow. I travelled to Oslo, with my best friend Reema, to stay with my second cousin, and close friend, Mary-Ann and her wonderful family. They’ve been living in Oslo for 5 years as expats from Perth. Mary Ann is 8 months pregnant and we were all recovering from a busy year. It wasn’t my first time, and so we spent time bundled up, strolling through the Scandinavian streets and parks, catching up, counselling, encouraging and laughing. We drank too much glühwein, ate elk burgers and meandered through Christmas markets. We had a fantastic Spanish meal, drank an obscene amount of coffee, and played with Xavier and his toys. A wonderful weekend that made me so grateful for my incredible girlfriends.


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Why I love… American Pancakes

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I don’t think you’re supposed to admit, as a 30-year old woman, that American pancakes is one of your favourite meals right? It’s not sophisticated and it’s not clever… but oh boy… they taste so good. My favourite recipe follows below, but first I must explain myself.

My husband and I live very busy lives. I work long hours and plenty of weekends, play lots of sport and have every hobby going. He works long hours, works long hours, works long hours. But when we’re on holiday together, we’re not doing anything other than being on holiday together. Phones and computers get switched off. Alarms have no place on our holidays, and all thoughts of chores and errands and laundry are put to the back of our minds. It’s just me and him, and our journey. We have spent a lot of time on holiday in the States over the last few years, and one of my favourite things to do is have a long American brunch before heading out for a day of sightseeing, driving, hiking or playing. Thanks to huge portion sizes, we rarely need to stop for lunch and so can keep going all day. When we’re at brunch together I get my husband’s full attention, over pancakes and maple syrup and bacon, planning and laughing and dreaming and sharing.

Occasionally I’ll make this recipe for dinner usually when one of us has had a bad day, to cheer us up. This really isn’t an everyday dinner dish. Otherwise, it comes out on my birthday, or when we have friends round for brunch.


180ml milk

30ml white vinegar

125g plain flour

25g sugar

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

3g salt

1 egg

10g melted butter

spray oil


Combine the milk with vinegar and leave for 5 minutes.

Combine all the dry ingredients.

Whisk the egg and butter into the soured milk.

Combine the wet and dry ingredients. Whisk until all the lumps are gone.

Heat a large frying pan over a medium heat and spray with oil.

Pour in a ladle of batter and cook until bubbles appear on the surface. At this point, flip the pancake. Cook for another minute and then slide onto a plate.

Where to start with serving recommendations? I have to say, Americans have it right, with very crispy bacon and maple syrup. Don’t write it off before you’ve tried it! Blueberries, raspberries, chocolate sauce, strawberry sauce, cream…. all delicious.


Ten days in Tuscany


Mum and I took the most incredible trip to Tuscany this summer. We booked it rather blindly, neither of us having been there before. We studied guide books and websites and came up with a loose itinerary. We struck the jackpot. We had several days wandering Pisa and Florence, browsing the markets, the galleries and wandering cobbled streets. We spent long days working up appetites for gelato, pizza, pasta and beautiful fresh vegetables. We then hired a car aand headed into the thick Italian countryside. We were met by waves of hills and vineyards with beautiful farmhouses studding the landscape. We stayed at an exquisite bed and breakfast in Greve before heading south right off the beaten track to an incredible unknown village called Pitigliano which is sadly falling off the very cliff it is built into.

We took a side trip the the exquisite villages called ‘cinque terre’. We planned to hike between all the villages, but unfortunately the path was closed, so we just went between two of them.

Tuscany was everything I needed, peaceful, fresh, beautiful, cultured and a big adventure.

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Wandering in Istanbul

During the Eid holiday in November this year, we flew North to Istanbul to spend a brisk and crisp weekend in Istanbul. Whilst the others slept and rested, I spent an afternoon wandering the windy streets of Istanbul, getting lost and exploring with just my camera and enough money for a cab ride home.

Such a large population in such a small area requires feeding and consequently there is food at every turn. Fresh bread, juices and seafood abounds.

Roasted Chestnuts

Roasted Chestnuts

The Blue Mosque, Istanbul

The Blue Mosque, Istanbul

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