1. Droideka - Get Hyper
2. Dub Pistols - Rock Steady
3. Boy - little Numbers
4. Dan Croll - Compliment Your Soul
5. C2C - Happy
Wednesday, 3 April 2013
Monday, 19 November 2012
It’s been a long time since I last picked up the knitting needles, a very long time. In fact it’s coming up to 18 months since I knitted anything at all, and 2 years since I got my teeth properly stuck into a project.
I put my lack of knitting bug down to my environment. Knitting is something I do when I’m settled and want to nest, but over the past two years I've moved around and lived in shared houses, which hasn't inspired the nesting urge.
But now Ben and I have our lovely cosy flat and the urge is back!
First on the agenda was to finish the hat I started knitting for Ben two years ago, before we were even a couple. He'd been impressed with my knitting and asked me to make him something, so we picked out the wool together, but I never ended up finishing it and it's been a burden on me ever since, with him periodically teasing me about whether his hat would ever be done.
Wen I did finally pick up the hat again and measure it against his head, I realised that it was large enough, so all I needed to do was to cast off. Cue me feeling guilty that I'd left it so long when there was so little left to do. It probably took me an hour from picking up the needles to having the hat done!
But Ben didn't care, he was just pleased his hat was finally done. Next project is to finish the cardigan I started two years ago...
Posted by Kate at 10:50
Thursday, 24 November 2011
A few months back, while slightly merry, I signed up to the organ donor register. I signed up to donate all my organs and all my tissue, and what’s more, I did it by text.
By text?! I hear you cry – why yes, by SMS text message. It was as simple as texting them my name, address and the word ‘all’, indicating they can take me for all I’ve got.
Ill-considered? Maybe. But when you realise that that text could save the lives of several people, restore the sight of two others, and improve the quality of life of many more, it doesn’t sound so foolish after all. In fact in might be the best decision I’ve ever made.
Previous to this I swerved the ‘donate my organs’ tick box when filling in forms. Something about having my insides removed and distributed made (makes) me fairly uncomfortable, and though I knew it was the right thing to do, it was a decision I really felt deserved more consideration than ticking a box while signing up for a Boots Advantage Card.
But I signed up by text… so where was my ‘needs more consideration’ argument then? Well I’d allowed alcohol to loosen my inhibitions, not just about dancing on tables, but also about giving away my insides. Not the first time anyone has wanted to give away their liver after drinking I'm sure.
As you’re reading this, I imagine you’ve thought to yourself either ‘yes, I’m already signed up’ or ‘no, I’m not on the organ donor register’. If your answer was no, then I urge you to take a moment to consider why. Are you strongly morally opposed to organ donation (if so, why?), are you too squeamish to consider your organs being removed, is it just that you ‘haven’t got around to it yet’ or is it that, like me, you think it’s a matter you should consider more carefully?
If it’s that you’re squeamish, then don’t panic – you will be completely and utterly dead before they remove any of your organs and you’ll know nothing of it. Go on, text SAVE to 84118 now and think no more about it.
If it’s that you haven’t got around to it yet, you can do it right now. You’re reading my blog so you must have so spare time on your hands. Text SAVE to 84118 or fill in the online registration form here.
If it’s that you think something so serious deserves more consideration, then consider how you’d feel if a close friend or family member required a transplant and couldn’t get one. There are currently more than 10,000 people in the UK waiting for an organ transplant, all of whom will be someone’s close friend or family member. That could be you, so sign up here or text SAVE to 84118.
For more information about organ donation visit www.uktransplant.org.uk
Posted by Kate at 22:37
Wednesday, 2 February 2011
Last Friday my friend Amir (who designed the LLL logo) and I headed down for our much awaited dinner at the Tate Modern Restaurant. I’ve wanted to go here for a while, especially after I found out they offer beer and wine pairing with their menu, so expectations were high and thankfully they didn’t disappoint.
The LocationAs Amir works in Richmond and I work in central, we decided to meet at Waterloo and walk to the Tate Modern. Amir reliably informed me this was around a 10 minute walk, but obviously, because he is a man, this was wildly incorrect. It actually took us closer to 20-30 minutes to walk along the river in the freezing cold. For this reason, I would suggest that you save yourself the hassle and take the tube to Southwark if you’re planning a visit.
The ServiceOnce we arrived we were warmly greeted by the Maître D, who had called me earlier in the day to confirm our booking – always a nice touch. As she showed us to our table I noted my request to sit next to the window had been granted and I don’t think I could have had a more beautiful view of London if I’d drawn it myself, which you can see from the photo.
Once seated, we were quickly offered a selection of breads by our waiter (who was stunning by the way), though unfortunately he forgot to bring the butter over. However, this was a small oversight and for the rest of the evening he was helpful and attentive, even recommending which type of red wine we should drink with our mains.
The Food & WineIn my slightly hungover state from the night before I decided I didn’t want a starter, so we got stuck straight into mains, both choosing the gnocchi in a kind of shin of beef casserole sauce with glazed carrots. I literally can’t recommend this enough, it was delicious and surprisingly the carrots were my favourite bit. The only gripe was that it would have been nice to have a bit more as the portions were on the small size. We chose to drink the accompanying wine, which was the Massaya ‘Classic’ 2007 from Bekaa Valley, Lebanon, at a very reasonable £22 a bottle. I absolutely loved this wine (may take the top spot as my favourite red wine) but Amir wasn’t so keen on it’s spicy notes.
As we hadn’t had starters we opted to have a dessert (a rarity for me) and I was pleased to note that there were a couple of options on the menu which were suitable for the lactose intolerant. Amir chose the pear and blackberry crumble, while I had the stewed rhubarb with rhubarb sorbet, but unfortunately both were a little lacklustre. The crumble lacked sharpness, while the rhubarb on rhubarb was a bit too sharp. Luckily, the smart cookies we are, we managed to solve this by doing a semi dessert trade but a better solution for the Tate Modern Restaurant might be to serve the crumble with the rhubarb sorbet.
Overall I'd give the Tate Modern Restaurant...All in all for £35 it was a nice meal and good wine, but could of done with slightly bigger portions and more attention to detail on the puddings. I'd give it a 3.5/5.
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Posted by Kate at 00:54
Wednesday, 26 January 2011
While of course I love to write about London, what I love far more than any city is food. Hot, cold, fast, fancy, savoury or sweet, as long as it’s edible I love it.
However, due to an epic six weeks between paydays over the Christmas period (thankfully now over), our dinners have been on the boring side of late. Beans on toast and pesto pasta have featured heavily, but I knew this was more due to laziness than lack of funds and that I could cook something far more exciting on a budget. So I did, and then I thought I’d share it with ya’ll. As with all my recipes, instructions and quantities are just a guide, adjust as you see fit, that’s the fun of cooking.
This dish was inspired twofold. Firstly by the fact that the only meat (expensive) we had in our fridge was a packet of bacon. Secondly, by my friend and neighbour Sarah, who recently made us a delicious lasagne from a vegetarian recipe, but wanting to meat it up for us, added sausage meat, which is a great alternative to beef.
1 courgette (zucchini)
1 large bag of spinach
A few cherry tomatoes
3 yellow peppers
1 pack of bacon (smoked, 12 slices)
2 onions, chopped
2 cans of chopped tomatoes
4 cloves of garlic
For the béchamel sauce:
A large knob of butter
About a pint of milk
A heaped tablespoon of flour
A large handful of grated cheese (mature)
1. Heat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius and get your lasagne dish out ready
2. In the style of Jamie, is best to do your prep before you start, otherwise you’re only going to get into a mess. Chop your onions as big or small as you like, chop your peppers into roughly 1cm chunks and peel your garlic. Use a vegetable peeler to peel thin slithers of courgette, stopping only when you reach the seeds. Put the slithers to one side and slice the core, keep this separate from the slithers. Finally, chop up your bacon
3. Put a frying pan on a high heat and add a little olive oil. When hot, chuck in the bacon and fry off for a few minutes
4. Turn the hob down to a medium heat and add your onions, peppers and sliced courgette core to the same pan as the bacon, crush your garlic and add that too. You can probably get away with just using the bacon fat, but add a bit of olive oil if need be
5. Sauté the onions for a few minutes until they have a little colour, then add your chopped tomatoes and leave to simmer away while you get on with your spinach and béchamel sauces
6. Boil the kettle and add as much spinach as you can fit into the food processor. Pour a little boiling water over the spinach and process until completely blended. Keep adding spinach and a little more water until the entire bag is chopped and wilted. Season with salt, pepper and one crushed clove of garlic
7. In a saucepan melt your butter on a medium heat and sprinkle in your flour. Stir together to form a doughy, playdough like texture, then start adding milk slowly
8. Whisk all the time and only add more milk once what’s in the pan starts to thicken
9. When you’ve used all your milk/got enough sauce, add in your cheese and mix thoroughly. Season to taste
10. Now you’re ready to put your lasagne together. It’s up to you how you want to layer it up by I did a layer of courgette slithers, a layer of tomatoey bacon sauce, lasagne sheets, spinach sauce, béchamel, then repeat. End with a layer of béchamel sauce and place your tomatoes (sliced in half) on top
11. Bake for 45 minutes and serve. Yum!
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Posted by Kate at 23:33