Friday, 21 October 2016

EVENT // Barrecore with Farfetch

A few weeks ago I was invited for a barrecore class with eight other bloggers by the lovely Farfetch team. They were spreading awareness of their new activewear line, but also wanted a chance to get to know us all, which was really refreshing and not something I have experienced from a brand before. We met at Barrecore in Mayfair which was only a stones throw away from Oxford Circus station.

Barrecore is a high-intensity workout that mixes low-impact fat-burning moves and static stretches whilst incorporating a bar. The benefits of such a workout include; firmer muscles, reduced body fat, toning and better muscle definition, a flatter abdomen and lifted glutes. As with yoga and pilates, the benefits are not just physical, exercise like this is also proven to be great for mental health. 

Having always wanted to try barre, I had a vague idea of what it involved, and knew that lots of models like the Victoria's Secret models incorporate barre into their workouts in order to tone and strengthen their bodies. I naively assumed that it would be a fairly easy workout, but boy was I wrong! We worked on our legs, abs, and arms, and I used muscles I never knew resided in me. The ache was real. Particularly after the squats and legwork. Climbing the stairs to leave the studio (located on basement level), my legs felt punished.

 Red arms much?!

Tired and ravenous, we all went for food together at NAC London - the cutest little French inspired bistro located just off of Oxford Street. The majority of us went for avocado toast and it was as pretty a picture as it was generous a portion size.

Tina had the honey chocolate French toast and bananas which looked all kinds of epic!

After such an intense workout, I wanted something healthy and invigorating to drink, so opted for their pineapple, wheat grass and coconut water juice which was really refreshing. With that and the avocado toast, I couldn't have had a greener meal!

In-between vlogging, Instagramming and taking pictures of our picture perfect food and table, it was really nice to get to know everyone a little more. It can be a little awkward entering room full of people you haven't met before, but I can honestly say, I couldn't have been grouped with a nicer group of people. There were no cliques, nor was there anyone with superiority complexes refusing to talk to certain people. Despite us all having blogs / vlogs of various ages / sizes, everyone was treated as equals. Never have I felt so relaxed or made to feel so welcome at an event before.

I would just like to take the time to say thank you to the lovely Farfetch team for organising one of the nicest blogger events I have ever been to in my six years of blogging. It felt really natural and you felt like they wanted to get to know you as a person, rather than being purely business like so many other events I have been to before. I also received a very generous goodie bag from the team and seeing as Farfetch is a global agglomeration of over 400 fashion boutiques with over 1000 labels online in one place, I felt well and truly spoilt in the best of ways!

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

The afternoon tea that lacked in tea...

Afternoon teas are one of my favourite things to do in London. Being based in the city, everyone is always so busy and sometimes it's nice to sit, drink tea, and watch the world go by.

Rewind a month or two back where I was delighted to be hosting one of my American friends, Lynne, who I hadn't seen since 2009(!). On Monday we had a day in London, starting off with a tour of Buckingham Palace, and then refuelled with an afternoon tea. Because what could possibly be more British than an afternoon tea?! And I was more than happy because cake. I booked us onto the champagne afternoon tea at the London Green Park Hilton as it was so conveniently located (just minutes away from Buckingham Palace!)

Upon arrival we were presented with a chest of twelve loose teas, all contained in little screw top jars. The lady told us we could have as much tea as we liked - we could even try all twelve teas if we really wanted! To start we all ordered the same tea (apple and elderflower). A mistake. Don't get me wrong, it was a delicious tea. But it would have been a far smarter choice to order a few different ones and share them amongst us. Because after that point, no one at the London Green Park Hilton offered us any more tea. At an afternoon tea. I am still reeling from this.

It was a Monday and it was dead -  so it wasn't like the staff were rushed off their feet and too busy to attend to us. As the tables around us emptied and we became the only table of people there, the staff just disappeared. We were sitting without tea for a good long while and when I finally spotted someone and beckoned them over, she seemed confused by our request for more tea. It was like we were at a pet shop and had asked for a bowl of cereal. Except that clearly wasn't the case. Before I beckoned this lady over, she had been setting up tables for breakfast the next day. Bearing in mind this was early afternoon still, and not close of play, it really frustrated me that a) no staff were around and b) when they were, they weren't paying the slightest bit of attention to paying customers.

Other than that it was a lovely afternoon tea. The sandwiches were some of the best I have ever had at an afternoon tea (and that is quite some feat!). The scones were MASSIVE and quite dense, so unfortunately I got a little too full to enjoy the full extent of the cakes. But there was a good sweet selection there which included macarons, fruit cake, lemon & coconut tart, walnut brownies and a raspberry posset.

To be honest, I wouldn't go back on account of what we experienced with the tea. Because the clue is in the name - afternoon tea. But still, you live and you learn.

Are you a fan of afternoon tea?

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

RECIPE // beetroot rosti with avocado

If you had told me when I was little that one day I would be so crazy about avocado that I would even eat it for breakfast, I would have laughed in disbelief. Because avocado is green. And back then I was *quote* allergic *end quote* to anything green. So the very thought of avocado toast would have been ludicrous. But here we are. Here we are in an age where our news feeds are image after image of the green stuff.

But why stop there? If we are going to turn to turn the rules of acceptable breakfast fare upside down, why not go all the way? Which is where ladies and gentlemen, I throw beetroot into the mix.

Full of iron, calcium, vitamin A, vitamin B, and a good source of folic acid, fibre and potassium, beetroot is proven to be good for us. So why is the idea of eating it first thing in the morning unfathomable? No more, my friends.

The other morning I made these beetroot rosti's (think of them as classy hash browns, if you will!) and oh my word, why haven't we tried this sooner? Beetroot is good. That is, if you can overlook its messy demeanour.

With beetroot forever staining my skin / clothing / crockery / work surfaces, the Marigold Extra Safe Disposable Gloves I was sent to review were perfect for the job.

But Lucy, there are so many disposable gloves out there, I hear you say. Why these gloves?

Well, the Marigold Extra Safe Disposable Gloves mark the launch of the first ever gloves made with food preparation and handling in mind. With the added benefits of being:

  • 100% latex free - perfect for those with latex allergies
  • Tested to EN standards and having the ECARF label and seal of approval
  • 100% powder free - having tried out the gloves for myself, I can verify I didn't have any sort of powder or grit contaminating my food or any leftover on my hands afterwards. Nor did my hands have that weird plastic glove smell afterwards (win!)

All in all, meaning that your hands have the ultimate protection against smells and stains. Which when you cook with garlic as much as I do, is music to your ears.

For the ultimate test against the trinity of stains, smells and rips, I decided that a beetroot rosti would fit the bill perfectly for the following reasons:

  • Stains - would the gloves protect my hands from the sheer bloodshed you get from opening a pack of beetroot?
  • Smells - would the gloves help with the classic annoyance of having my hands and nails smell of garlic DAYS after I have cooked with the damn thing?
  • Rips - how would the gloves fare against a grater when I grated the potatoes and beetroot?

And I must say, I was impressed. I had already hoped that my hands would be stain and smell free - because that's the very least you can ask from gloves like these. However I honestly didn't expect them to survive the grater. Because I wasn't exactly being light handed on the thing. If I wasn't wearing gloves, I probably would have shred my fingers to pieces!

The end result was delicious (the rosti's, not the gloves!). I pan fried each rosti for approx 4-6 minutes on each side and then served whilst hot with a generous sprinkling of rock salt to help enhance the crunch of the rosti, and topped with buttery avocado slices. Because beetroot and avocado is a winning flavour combination (go try it if you haven't already!). And what better way to start your day than with a colourful plate staring up at you?

Perfect for breakfast / brunch / lunch, if you want to give this colourful plate a go one day, you can find the full recipe below:


  • x4 large Maris Piper potatoes
  • x3 cloves of garlic
  • Pack of x4 ready to eat beetroot
  • Salt and pepper
  • Cooking oil
  • x1 avocado


  1. Scrub potatoes to remove any excess dirt. Do not peel as there are so many good nutrients in the skin and it would be a shame to waste them!
  2. Bring a large pan of water to the boil and boil your potatoes for 7-8 minutes on a medium-high heat.
  3. Run your potatoes through a colander and drain. Leave to one side to cool.
  4. Once cool, grate the potatoes. I used this IKEA grater container as it makes grating so much easier and neater, keeping it all contained in one place. 
  5. Transfer your shredded potatoes into a large mixing bowl
  6. Season with salt and pepper and add the crushed garlic
  7. Next grate the beetroot - things will get messy! This is where having the Marigold Extra Safe Disposable Gloves came in really handy, protecting my hands.
  8. Add the beetroot to the other ingredients in the mixing bowl. Combine and form however many patties you like (I made x8 big ones!). The mixture will very quickly look like super pink burgers!
  9. Oil a frying pan and fry each rosti for 4-6 minutes on each side, or until golden. Dab each one off on kitchen towel once done to mop up the excess oil
  10. Serve whilst hot, adding more seasoning to taste

Makes approx x8 rosti's

Do let me know in the comments below or by reaching out to me on Twitter or Instagram (I'm @Lucy_Angele on both!) if you give this recipe a try! It's something a little bit different from avocado toast, but is every bit as tasty!

* Post sponsored by Marigold

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

How to make an apple crumble... when you don't have any of the ingredients

This could have just as easily been titled "winging it". Because that was how that this recipe came about.

The story

If you were here with me last time, you will know that I am only a few weeks settled into my new home. One of the more pleasant surprises from the move was that my garden actually has all the fruit. There are two pear trees, a cooking apple tree, rhubarb, wild strawberries, some fruit that I can't even identify, and two separate patches of raspberries which are quickly devouring the whole garden. I am up to my elbows in fruit, and it's bitter sweet, because there are only so many raspberries you can eat before you get bored. It was time to take action.

At the weekend I was faced with two new apples and again, all the raspberries. Then I had quite the light bulb moment: what better weekend for an apple crumble?

It was a fine idea. Until I discovered I had zero ingredients for any sort of crumble.

I didn't have the right sugar. I didn't have the right butter. And once the apples were peeled, cored and de-bruised, there wasn't a whole lot of apple there.

But I am no quitter. Such a trivial thing wasn't going to faze me.

The lack of apple was easily recovered by adding raspberries to patch up the crumble base. I'm not sure that using Bertolli olive spread was ever for recommended use in a crumble topping.... but I went with it. And you know what? It looked and tasted like a traditional crumble. And oh my, it was delicious.

Not too sweet, and not too sharp, the fruit seemed perfectly fine despite using the wrong sugar. And apples and raspberries were a winning combination which I'll be using in crumbles time and time again. In the meanwhile, if anyone wants any raspberries, you know where to find me...

Thursday, 22 September 2016

UPDATE // Buying my first property

It feels like ages since we last spoke to each other! Long time readers will know about my latest purchase - The House. Looking for a new flat or house is all very exciting when it comes to going to look at properties, but nothing could have prepared me for the stress of placing an offer and the overall buying process. Having been unsuccessful on one property (being outbid at the last minute) and then facing a bidding war on house #2, thankfully my final offer on house #2 was accepted. That was November last year. There wasn't a particularly long chain, but the administration, fees, and waiting time un-romanticised the whole exciting buying your first property notion.

The original memo was to complete over the May 2016 bank holiday weekend. But a few days prior to the Bank Holiday, there was silence. And silence is never a good thing. Turns out the other end of the chain needed serious medical treatment which would span May - July. So instead July was the suggested month. Nothing. The majority of August passed and then suddenly it all happened in a flash. The exchange was finally made.

For those not familiar with the whole buying process, the exchange is where it all becomes legal and official. The completion date was set for 1st September and the guy in my now home confirmed he had booked his removals van. It all became very real very quickly.

But despite it all being locked in and technically legally binding, there was still that niggling feeling and ALL THE ANXIETY. Only earlier this year did I read an article about someone who had exchanged, had a completion set in stone, and booked their removals, only at the last minute for it all to come crashing down. The result? They lost their apartment and had to start their property search all over again. So despite exchanging, I couldn't relax. I was super paranoid and had that awful, awful feeling that it was all going to go tits up.

Fortunately I was proven wrong. I picked up the keys on 1st September and stood inside my new home, amazed at the prospect of owing a house before hitting 30. It still doesn't quite feel like 'home', but it's getting there. Some rooms initially smelt stale so over the first two days, a vigorous cleaning regime was put in place. Every inch of the house was cleaned. I hired a carpet cleaner and spent a whole day cleaning carpets. I have added lots of my own touches like reed diffusers and candles, and those things combined with the smell of your own cooking (in my case, largely red wine based meals!) really helped eliminate that new home smell.

There is still a lot that needs to be done. Rooms are still looking fairly empty, and will carry less echoes once filled with furniture. The living room and kitchen are no longer filled floor to ceiling with boxes, which is a start. Only on week two did I unpack my clothes and buy an ironing board. It's been so nice not to wear the same old things and to be crease free! FINALLY got Internet at the end of last week, so normal service at Curiouser and Curiouser can now be resumed!

As well as the usual food, fashion and lifestyle content, I have got lots of house and home related posts and advice coming up which hopefully those of you looking to get onto the property ladder will find useful! And of course.... a sneak preview of the house itself very soon ;) Thanks for bearing with me! x

*image source Pinterest

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

OOTD // Pyjama chic

When you hear the words "pyjama chic", I'm talking silky two pieces which look like luxe sleepwear, and loose trousers which could easily pass for pyjama bottoms. Although not brave enough to wear the former out, as for the latter, I'm all about that comfy trouser life. Having had a pair for years now, they are officially the comfiest things ever. I wear them around the house and on plane journeys they are are a GODSEND. I usually get raised eyebrows from people when I wear them; hey you lazy sod, too lazy to bother getting dressed today. But au contraire, ladies and gents. These are proper legit trousers.

Up until now, I haven't felt very comfortable wearing them out for other events that don't include the airport or a quick dash for groceries, but the pjyama chic trend coming around makes me feel a little less timid to wear such a look out.

Camisole - thrifted
YSL bag* - Farfetch
Trousers - Forever 21 (old)
Shoes - gifted

Because of their loose shape, I like to wear something a little more fitted on top to balance out the look. I usually go for strapless bandeau tops, or a delicate camisole like the one featured above. This top I've had for years (a hand me down from my aunt!) and is one of my favourites. It has scallop detailing on it too - meaning I was all about the scallops right from a young age!

And can we talk about the shoes? These were a recent gift from family who just came back from holiday and they are the comfiest things I have put on my feet in a very long time.

How you do feel about the pyjama trend?

*A huge thanks to Farfetch for introducing me to the bag of my dreams!

Friday, 12 August 2016

Friday night feels // moules frites, seafood risotto and Belgium beer

A couple of months back I met a friend for a long overdue catch up and had zero ideas where to go to eat and drink. We were walking around for a while and came across a Belgo. For those of you not already acquainted, Belgo is a Belgium inspired bar and eaterie, which specialises in Belgium beers and moules frites. But not just any moules frites. With options including Thai green curry, BBQ and chipotle, these are mussels with a difference. On that occasion I had a risotto and I usually find these very heavy, filling dishes with not nearly enough flavour... but Belgo's king prawn risotto was a revelation. It was hands down the best risotto I have ever had. I was so impressed with my first visit to Belgo, I went back again one Friday to a different branch to indulge in more Belgium beverages. Oh and the same risotto. Which was equally good second time around.

The risotto in question is their king prawn and asparagus risotto cooked in champagne, brandy butter and lobster bisque. A very luxurious dish which although rich sounding, isn't at all. It being the first risotto where I can easily clear my plate and not have to surrender early on account of being full.

The real MVP of the meal however were the moules frites. Whilst I can deal with a few mussels in paella, I'm not a huge fan of them as they are a little too fishy for me... I would never order a pot of them by themselves. However that Friday I tried the Belgo ones and I was converted. The ones I tried were meaty rather than fishy and were consistently good - you didn't get bored after a set amount of time. The ones I tried were the chorizo ones which were infused with the lovely paprika oil and had a dusting / sprinkling of parsley. Straight away I knew what I'd be ordering on my next visit!

The drinks menu at Belgo is a daunting thing. With so many beers on offer, it's difficult to know where to start! The Tripel Karmeliet was a good choice and came in the most awesome glass with a fleur de lis at the base. Their wine was equally good too!

Have you ever been to Belgo?