Recipe: Scones for Cream Tea

recipe scones

While a full afternoon tea is sometimes a bit overwhelming with so many sandwiches, scones and then sweet desserts on top of all of that, I love a simple cream tea. A scone with clotted cream and strawberry jam and some English breakfast tea sip between bites.

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A Photography Adventure in Shoreditch with Foto Ruta London

On a cloudy Sunday afternoon, a group of mostly Londoners gathered around a wooden table in an upstairs room at Forge & Co on Shoreditch High Street. I invited Stu from Inspiring City to come along for a few hours of urban exploration and photography.

Foto Ruta

We were there to play a little game called Foto Ruta Clue, a photography treasure hunt around one of the most vibrant areas of the city.

Foto Ruta

We kicked it off with a handful of examples for inspiration, were passed a few standard photo tips (ie – rule of thirds, leading lines, direction of light, be patient!), grabbed a partner and wandered off into the wilds of East London with a set of eight clues and a map of the local area.

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A Mini London Staycation at The Zetter Townhouse & Cocktail Lounge

When Malibu asked me to be part of their #BestSummerEver campaign, one of the first experiences to go on my Best Summer Ever list was a night in the colourful Townhouse Deluxe room at The Zetter Townhouse in Clerkenwell.

Clerkenwell

The Zetter Townhouse

Jorge and I have this quirky Georgian getaway in mind for a mini London staycation for quite a while now so we were excited to pack our overnight bags last Saturday and hop on the 19 bus for a trek to the east. We wove our way through unfamiliar side streets and arrived at a powder blue door across the cobbles of St John’s Square from their original big sister hotel, The Zetter.

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Little Weekend Links 39

How was your week? Mine’s been quite alright. Last weekend was tons of fun. Jorge and I had a little staycation at The Zetter Townhouse (post coming on Monday) here in London, only east… It’s a quirky place with an amazing little cocktail lounge. We explored the local area and finally ate at the new branch of Iberica in Farringdon, our favourite Spanish restaurant in London (post soon). Sunday was spent editing photos and blogging.

This week has been a breath of fresh air after a chaotic conference at work the previous one. I even had a day of working from home when I got about twice my normal amount of work done in one day. I’m so much more productive when I work from home. Go figure.

I’m looking forward to this weekend for some honeymoon planning (ie – airbnb and hotel decision making and booking), and a photography treasure hunt around Shoreditch with Foto Ruta and my buddy Stu from the brilliant Inspiring City blog (which I’d highly recommend following). It’s also a bank holiday on Monday which makes me extremely happy!

Any fun plans for you?

IMG_8558_2Photo: Knightsbridge, London – August 2014

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Discovering London’s Maltby Street Market

Maltby Street Market London

If I lived anywhere near Bermondsey, I’d be a regular at this tiny street market that’s nestled in amongst the railway arches and a large council estate.

Maltby Street Market

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Interview: Jacintha Verdegaal

Urban-Pixxels-Jacintha

I met Jacintha, a lovely and talented Dutch photographer and blogger at The Cookery School’s blogger social back in May. That’s when I discovered her blog, Urban Pixxels, which quickly became one of my favourites to return to again and again. Her photography just blows me away. I find it so clean and refreshing the way she captures the world around her, including London where we both now live.  Plus, thanks to her, my list of restaurants and coffeeshops to try in London has reached new heights. Below, Jacintha tells us a bit about her background as a serial expat, what we’d find if we took a peek into her photography bag and a bit about cycling in London versus Holland.

Urban-Pixxels-london-eye

LO: Tell us a bit about yourself: Where are you from originally, how long have you been living in London and what brought you here? Where else have you called home?
JV: I’m originally from the Netherlands. It’s a great country to live in, but I’ve always wanted to experience living in other countries as well. The first time I moved abroad was in the year 2000, when I left my parents’ house to study and live in Paris. A big change, but when I moved back after one year I couldn’t wait to pack my bags again and do the same in a different country. That happened in 2003 when I got the chance to do my internship in New York. I loved that city! But I had to go home to finish my masters and then I found a job in The Hague (Den Haag). Last year, early 2013, I felt it was time for a change and that I needed another international adventure. I wasn’t necessary looking to move to London, but I found a job that allowed me to move here and so I did. I’ve been living here since March 2013.

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Little Weekend Links 38

It’s been a pretty intense conference week at work with lots of extra long hours so I don’t fall too behind with everyday work. This means the little amount of free time I have in the evenings is spent playing catch up with editing photos, blogging, watching a few episodes of Orange is the New Black with Jorge and sleeping. I also managed to fit in a lovely evening of wine drinking and good conversation with Anne from Benton and Tilley who was visiting London from Kentucky. Last weekend Jorge and I went to the beautiful Royal Opera House to watch a magical ballet. I also went to London’s Maltby Street Market for the first time and visited an old favourite, Borough Market. Posts on those soon! This weekend, we’re gearing up for a staycation at the Zetter Townhouse in Clerkenwell and look forward to taking advantage of their cocktail bar while we’re there.

What are you up to this weekend?

IMG_8339Photo: London Bridge, August 2014

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Recipe: Fresh Oregano and Onion Bread

What I enjoy least about cooking is the chopping, with one exception: herbs.

Fresh Oregano and Onion Bread

The fresh oregano I used in this recipe smelled divine. My lovely friend Sarah who recommended this recipe to me via epicurious has an urban garden outside of her flat in the middle of Manhatten and picked her own oregano. Making this bread made me wish I had a full garden of herbs I could pick from at will, but central London is short of green space and our windowsill is already packed full of other plants. My oregano was courtesy of Waitrose.

Fresh Oregano and Onion Bread

It’s a very simple bread to make, full of flavour and just the right slightly chewy yet airy texture. I like it untoasted with a layer of butter smoothed across the top. It’s also great dipped in soup.

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Ballet at the Royal Opera House

Thanks to Malibu’s #BestSummerEver campaign which I’m thrilled to be a part of, Jorge and I had tickets to see a double bill of Apollo and MidSummer Night’s Dream at the Royal Opera House on Saturday Night.

Royal Opera House

Neither of us had been to the Royal Opera House and it’s a long time since I’ve seen a ballet, so we had been looking forward to this tribute to the work of the celebrated Russo-American choreographer George Balanchine. Both shows were performed by the St. Petersburg-based Mariinsky Ballet, a company Balanchine performed with himself from the age of 11.

Royal Opera House

There are no words in ballet, only movement, elegance and grace accompanied by an orchestra. I’m no ballet critic by any means so I’ll leave that to the pros, but it was a beautiful evening and an immaculate display of talent.

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Little Weekend Links 37

Last weekend we had a full on, whirlwind trip to Stockholm which is a fantastic city. We were greeted with blue skies all weekend. I’ll be posting a few of our adventures in the next few weeks. Monday, I took the day off to edit photos and catch up on those things that pile up while you’re away like laundry and emails. The rest of the week was work, blog, work, blog, work, blog if I’m honest. My gift certificate for the Royal Opera House arrived from the team at Malibu. Jorge and I were planning to see Swan Lake as part of the #BestSummerEver project, but it was sold out unfortunately. So, instead, we will see a double show – Apollo and MidSummer Night’s Dream on Saturday night.

How about you? What have you been up to this week? Any exciting plans for this weekend?

chiliesPhoto: How pretty are these purple chilies I spotted in Stockholm?

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