FACE | GLOW GET ‘EM

It’s time to GLOW GET ‘EM with the new wet n wild® limited-edition collection Time to Glow Up highlighting powders. This Limited Edition range offers four key powder products to bring a bright, glow to the face, and includes:

The MegaGlow™ Highlighting Powder (€ 5.25 / £4.90) comes in two shades - Bloom Time and Awesome Blossom – both perfect to draw attention to the right areas of the face and adapting to different skin types and complexions. The Mega Glo™ highlighting powders are perfect for the entire face, with a long-lasting effect. With rich shimmering pearl pigments, they have a fresh, light texture and give the skin a brighter appearance, blending perfectly with the complexion for a natural glow.

The collection is further expanded with You Glow, girl and I’m so Lit!, two sassy shades of Mega Glow™ Loose Highlighting Powder (€ 6.95 / £5.90), in a limited edition, exclusive to this collection. These finely ground, shimmering pigments bring a splendidly intense glow to the skin and can either be used alone or blended into foundation or primer. I blended mine in with some MAC Strobe Cream for some total bare-faced glow.

The Time to Glow Up Limited Edition is available in stores from now, while stocks last. And remember, all wet n wild® products are cruelty-free and PETA approved.

Mega Glo™ Highlighting Powder –

2 shades:
·    Bloom Time
·   Awesome Blossom

 Mega Glo™ Loose Highlighting Powder –

2 shades:

·   I’m so lit!
·   You Glow, Girl

 Instagram: @wetnwildireland Facebook: @wetnwildireland

 

FAMILY | BACK TO SCHOOL – BACK TO ROUTINE!

 The countdown is on for the start of the new school year (I, for one, am ticking off the days), but, if you’re dreading the return of the associated morning madness as much as I am, then read on for a tried and tested, stress-free routine that actually works.

By Cathy Martin with contributor Amanda  Maguire of www.imamanda.co.uk

 THE NIGHT BEFORE…

1.       Tidy house, tidy mind! Do you put dinner dishes in the dishwasher or wash them at the sink right after dinner? Or are they still there at bedtime? One way to feel less stressed in the morning is to wake up with the kitchen – and especially the dishes - done, so best tackle that right after dinner if you can, and then you can relax a little with your evening. While you’re at it, maybe also wipe down the worktops, put the rubbish out and soak that baking dish so you’re literally starting afresh the next day. I hear lots of people talk about misplacing car keys and all sorts, but we have a strict rule that house and car keys ALWAYS go into the little tray by the door, so they’re rarely, if ever lost.

As my all-time fave housekeeper and manager of kids Mary Poppins once said (quoting Samuel Smiles of course) 'A place for everything and everything in its place

2.       Shop smart & pre-prep lunches: if your child takes a packed lunch or snack, then try to start to prep lunchboxes with non-refrigerated items (although I do know mums who prep everything and pop the whole lunchbox in the fridge to save morning minutes). It may feel like the last thing you want to do, but there is a definite smugness when you just have to grab ‘n’ go with the lunchbox in the morning!  And who wants to open the fridge door on a wet school morning to find you’ve run out of smoothies, yoghurts, cheese squares or carrot sticks (or indeed whatever your little one loves for lunch or snack)?  If you’re a single mum like me, a late night supermarket run once they’ve gone to bed is out of the question. And a quick-stop dash to the shop in the morning is impossible to factor in timewise, so take stock early and sort it out as required.

3.       Leave out uniform, clothes and shoes: You can (and should) encourage the kids to get involved here and do this themselves from as early as Primary 1. And in winter, maybe pop them onto a radiator so they’re super cosy for your little ones getting ready in the morning. Paired socks and underwear all pre set out prevents those long, drawn out (and agonising to listen to) calls of ‘muuuuuuum, where’s my….?’  when you’re trying to get ready yourself. Another good point, learnt the hard way, is to try and have a clean uniform or spare clothes to hand too. This takes the stress out of the inevitable breakfast spills or those moments when you notice a streak of pink paint down the arm of a school jumper 10 minutes before you’re due to leave the house. Or, in my case, when you’re getting into the car. PS I recommend parents to do this with their own clothes to remove any time wasting deciding what to wear; it is revolutionary. On gym days, I pack my work clothes in my gym bag so I’m all set to go once I shower there. On superhero days, my gym bag and clothes are popped out to the car the night before. But TBF I rarely have superhero days.

4.       It seems obvious, but I often forget to check Valentina’s bag for teacher notes and extra titbits of homework, reading or project work. We’ve all been there at 08.55 trying to find empty loo rolls we’ve just been told about! A quick check after dinner and/or when prepping uniform will prevent last minute panics and give time for you (or rather, them) to complete forgotten tasks.  Make sure everything else that is needed for next day is left out (for us, by the door or in the hall) including PE kits, musical instruments, costumes for assemblies or signed slips for school trips and so on. You get the drift. Again, I would encourage kids to lead here if you can. And no screen time until it’s done!

5.       Abolish the Ablutions!: Have a bath the night before to save time in the morning. I do love a shower in the morning but sometimes I just know that given the choice between 10 more minutes in bed and a shower I will gladly take the 10 minutes’ kip! Having said that, I’m often straight into gym gear and shower after class or a run when I have peace and no kids around! Plus, in our house, Valentina doesn’t bathe every night or indeed every morning – instead opting for two or three showers a week, usually after swimming. I’m a firm believer that too much washing isn’t great for our skin and a weekly bath from post nappies until puberty never did me any harm!

 

THE MORNING AFTER!

6.       Get up early: Some mums just seem to have their shizzle together more than others. I’m definitely more often in the ‘others’ category, although I would love to be one of those who gets a workout in, or is showered and ready in peace with a hot coffee or a healthy green juice or smoothie while listening to an inspirational podcast before the children wake up. Imagine!? This is the dream… but I just love the quiet of late night working too much to do this regularly.

7.       Prep breakfast: Limit breakfast choices to a couple of options to save time making decisions as well as the possible arguments. Thankfully, Valentina has a brioche, a crepe or a croissant with Nutella most mornings and it’s been that way since she started school. I appreciate it would be considered quite a sugar-heavy breakfast for some mums, but the rest of her day is quite healthy so I take the French approach to brekkie and fuel up on calories at the start of the day with a view to burning them all off!

8.       Timings: Make sure everyone knows what time you need to leave the house and give them plenty of reminders if necessary. I use my phone and set different sounding alarms for 20 minutes, 10 minutes, etc, which works.  This means I’m not shouting or clock watching (as much) which greatly reduces parental stress levels in the morning.

9.       The List: Valentina has a list of four things she has to do herself with a strict house rule of no TV, technology or other activities until she has time to spare. Her four things are:

·         Get Dressed

·         Brush Teeth

·         Brush Hair

·         Eat Breakfast & put away breakfast dishes

I’ve seen this described as a ‘need to do’ list and a ‘want to do’ list. In other words, they can do the things they want to do once the things they need to do, like brushing their teeth, eating breakfast etc. are completed. It helps children stay motivated and avoids unwanted distractions.

 

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AND LAST BUT NOT LEAST….

10.   Keep calm! Even with the best laid plans, not all mornings will run smoothly; and that’s OK. The important thing is how you react. Don’t let a sleep in or a bad 5 minutes ruin your whole day. If something doesn’t go according to plan, try to let it go, ask for help and reallocate a task to someone else. Or if you’re a single mum like me with no one else around, simply take a minute to yourself and breathe. The worst that will happen is you find yourself being brought to task by a child because you forgot to do something you were supposed to do…

The overriding rule though? It’s important to involve the children, making sure they understand the benefits of the routine and take responsibility for their tasks. When kids feel included and listened to they are more willing to follow the routine and became more independent and self-disciplined in general, not just in the mornings.

 Roll on La Rentrée!

FOOD | LOCO FOR LATINO AT SIX BY NICO

Six by Nico Belfast journeys to the heart of Mexico

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Six by Nico brings the vibrant spirit of modern Mexico to town with its contemporary take on modern Mexican food and drink on the menu from 20 August. 

 Inspired by the country’s extensive culinary culture, the new 'Mexico' menu aims to transport diners from the hazy cactus deserts of Tijuana to the vibrant, bustling streets of Mexico City with each course. Chef Nico Simeone’s six-course tasting menu, rich in both colour and flavour, combines elements of modern Mexican street food and ancient culinary classics to provide guests with a taste of the country’s flavourful history.

 Nico’s restaurant concept, which creates a new menu every six weeks, has gone through a number of themes since opening in Cathedral Quarter earlier this year; with themes including The Chippie, Catalonia and the current menu, Thai Street Food, all featured at the popular restaurant. 

 We haven’t been yet (obvs), but our mouths are watering at the menu already as it includes food to take you from fiesta to siesta and back again. So much colour, texture and taste to explore – we cannot WAIT!

AMUSE BOUCHE - Lettuce, Lime Leaf & Avocado Gazpacho, Pico De Gallo Salsa; 

BLOW TORCHED MACKEREL - Watermelon, Green Cilantro Taco, Whipped Creme Fraiche; 

FRESH BURRATA - Green Chilli Salsa Verde, Cucumber Ketchup, Garden Herbs, Green Tomato Tostada; 

SEA BASS - White Bean Hash, Chorizo, Pumpkin, Squid Ink & Lemon Emulsion; 

PORK BELLY - Barbecued Elote, Crispy Fried Cornichon, Roasted Quince. 

And fiesta-goers will love the sixth dish on the menu that offers a latin twist on the dessert with a CHOCOLATE CRÉMEUX - Banana Ice Cream, Vanilla & Agave Gel, Candied Hazelnuts, Chocolate Taco, Banana Crisp. 

 The deets: Diners can book a table now for ‘Mexico’. Open from midday, Tuesday through to Sunday, each six-course menu will be available from noon to night. The menu will be priced from £29 per person with the option to enjoy an expertly selected wine and specialist drinks pairing for an additional £26. As ever, there is a vegetarian alternative available for every course, as well as 'Mexico' themed snack sides. 

 To make a reservation and to book now, visit https://www.sixbynico.co.uk/belfast/

Mexico will run from Tuesday 20th August until Sunday September 29th 2019. Six by Nico Belfast, 23 - 31 Waring St, Belfast BT1 2DX

FASHION | Happy (& Pretty) Feet

Sandals that look good AND feel good are no longer the foray of your Great Aunt Gertrude.

There's some seriously stylish, non blister-inducing footwear around right now - and bargains to be snapped up if you're quick. I've done the legwork so you don't have to, with a shortlist ranging from high street to luxe. So whether galavanting around Galway or roaming the French Riviera, slip on some slides and walk this way for all the Summer shoe inspo a girl needs.

Next £40

Next £40

Next £40

Next £40

Bertie Kalette Flatform -£60.

Bertie Kalette Flatform -£60.

Boo hoo strappy leather sandals -£15

Boo hoo strappy leather sandals -£15

Office Shoreditch -£32

Office Shoreditch -£32

Chanel quilted ‘Dad’ sandal

Chanel quilted ‘Dad’ sandal

River Island quilted sandal £45.00

River Island quilted sandal £45.00

Prada tech sandal

Prada tech sandal

Dune Loupe Smart Slider -£85

Dune Loupe Smart Slider -£85

Gucci slider £450

Gucci slider £450

Step up neutrals by introducing animal print or a pop of colour to your shoedrobe, with gorgeous slides from Next (which have the most amazing summer shoe collection & lots for the little ones too!), Hush, Ted Baker and Kurt Geiger.

NEXT £26

NEXT £26

Hush Brigstock Leopard Slider £99

Hush Brigstock Leopard Slider £99

Moda in Pelle Navasi £69.95

Moda in Pelle Navasi £69.95

Kurt Geiger Summer Slides -£39 (sale)

Kurt Geiger Summer Slides -£39 (sale)

Prada sandal

Prada sandal

Moda in Pelle Norena -£39.95 (sale)

Moda in Pelle Norena -£39.95 (sale)

Next older girls black sandals £17-£20.

Next older girls black sandals £17-£20.

Add texture to your staples with glitter, embroidery, metallics or mock croc, from Sophia Webster (yes please!), Bertie and Carvela.

Sophia Webster Butterfly -£275

Sophia Webster Butterfly -£275

Office Glitter Slides -£32

Office Glitter Slides -£32

Carvela Kupkake -£39 sale

Carvela Kupkake -£39 sale

Bertie Luchia Canvas Embellished -£50 sale

Bertie Luchia Canvas Embellished -£50 sale

Ancient Greek Iris -£155

Ancient Greek Iris -£155

M&S leather studded sandal -£45

M&S leather studded sandal -£45

CHLOE £206.50

CHLOE £206.50

Pair said shoes with denim cut offs, a maxi or jumpsuit, and you're good to go strolling, shopping or sipping rose...

 

FAMILY | FAMILY TIME AT THE NORTH COAST

 If you haven’t got a holiday booked this year or been away anywhere yet, then there is no better place to have a “staycation” than up at the North Coast. Now that The Open has been and gone, the towns and villages are back to ‘business as usual’ with a whole host of family fun set among naturally beautiful coastline and stunning beaches, so there is plenty to keep the family entertained over the summer months and through all weathers.

Here we have listed a few of our faves, but there are lots more things to do and plenty of resources to check it all out.

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1. The Giants Causeway

Many of us locals take this Natural Wonder of the World for granted, but it really is outstanding and such a crazy natural phenomenon when you stop to think about how our famous hexagonal rocks were formed. The Giant’s Causeway Visitor Centre has lots of information on the area and the history behind the stones; you can choose to take an audio tour or simply walk down to the Causeway and just take in the gorgeous scenery at your own pace. It’s a photographer’s dream, whatever the weather – and a must-do is to get a picture on the rocks near a crashing wave if you feel like risking it. Not one for the little ones though! The walk to the Causeway can be a challenge for those who are perambulate or just too young/too old, so there is a bus that takes you from the visitors’ centre and back again if you can’t manage. To add to the enjoyment you can also get the old fashioned railway train from Bushmills up to the Causeway which is a real treat for the kids. There is free parking at the Bushmills carpark for the train.

 https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/giants-causeway

2. White Rock Beach

Located in Portrush, White Rocks beach has to be among the most gorgeous beaches in all Ireland, with beautiful sand dunes that kids loving running up and down. [Side note: A great use for that sledge you have from the winter months is putting the kids on it and letting them sail down the dunes!] Another interesting activity for younger ones is to search the caves for any hidden treasures. We also enjoy acting out the “going on a bear hunt” book and searching the caves for imaginary bears.

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There is  no better place for just a lovely long the water watching the surfers try their best to catch some waves. If you have older kids, they can take up some surf lessons closer to the town end of the beach. There are a few schools, but Troggs is probably the oldest and best established and surfing is a great way to build up an appetite for a big feed at the Ramore or Neptune and Prawn.

http://www.troggssurfschool.com/

 3. Ballintoy Harbour

Down the narrowest and bendiest road you will find the most gorgeous harbour, Ballintoy. With beautiful little fishing boats and views for days, Ballintoy its great place to explore with little ones – and the perfect place to capture life-long photo memories in black and white too. There is beach with loads of pebbles which are fabulous to collect for decoration (I have a beautiful vase of plain white pebbles in the bathroom) or plain grey ones are fab for painting back at home. If you’re adventurous you can bring paints with you to wile away an hour or two on the picnic blanket! Ballintoy is also known to be popular with marine wildlife, so make sure to keep your eyes open in case you spot a pod of dolphins nearby!

4.  Portballintrae Beach

 Of all the beaches there are for kids, Portballintrae would probably be the most popular choice because it is small, located beside a shop which sells delicious ice cream and there is a public toilet located next to the town hall.  You will find many families pack up for the day and head here so you always see a barbeque or picnic happening – if not at the beach, then by the pier wall, where older kids jump off and swim back in to shore.  It’s important to note that Portballintrae is a relatively  small cove which doesn’t have as strong a current as, say, White Rocks or East Strand in Portrush, so the water is safer to play in. This is the Atlantic Ocean after all. There are also plenty of rock pools so make sure to bring a net to catch some crabs in there as there are always plenty to spot.

5. An evening in Portstewart

A great way to round up a busy day is a walk along the main street in Portstewart. At the very end of the street there is wonderful play park build in the sand with a splash pad located just beside, so make sure and bring a change of clothes for the little ones! There is also a panoramic viewing wheel located in Portstewart for the summer months so you can take in the views from great height - 110 metres to be exact. This will be there until 01 September, so be sure to give it a go. There are loads of eateries in the area and we love some of the restaurants in Portstewart, but a bag of takeaway chips eaten on the prom is also a fun adventure for the kids too.

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6. Morellis Ice Cream

Have you even been to Port-Magic if you haven’t visited Morellis!? Located in Portrush and Portstewart, this third-generation ice cream café is an absolute essential. The ice cream is absolutely delicious with a vast array of flavours from your typical vanilla and chocolate through to Daim bar and Nutella delights. They even have a hot chocolate sauce tap to cover your ice cream! Mums will love that Morellis cater brilliantly for smaller children with their Monkey Cone; just enough ice cream to enjoy the flavour with much less stress about dripping chocolate on those clothes - if you know, you know!

ww.morellisices.com/

7. Barry’s amusements

Barry’s is, of course, a North Coast institution. Everyone (from this neck of the woods anyway) surely  remembers a trip to Barry’s at some stage in their life? How could you forget!?  It has definitely moved with the times though, and now caters to a younger crowd with more toddler rides to keep the littlest ones happy while the bigger ones can enjoy the famous Ghost Train and Big Dipper out the back. The only tears you will see are when the tokens for the rides run out!

www.barrysamusements.com

8.  Creative Gardens

This is not only the most beautiful garden centre you could find (located in Bushmills), but also a great idea for a rainy day. There is a big gift shop inside with lots of alternative toys and books for children and also a lovely restaurant/café. There is a play barn with a climbing frame and slide equipment located beside the ice cream/coffee station so parents can relax whilst the children play in a safe environment.  There are also numerous children’s activities that go on through the summer including treasure hunts, face painting and barbeques as they house a Webber Barbeque area.

 

9.  Coastering and other watersports

The Atlantic Ocean is free to use – so get out and enjoy it, even for a paddle, while the Gulf Stream keeps the waters warm right through until October. If you have older kids and you’re feeling particularly sporty, find Hanno at Alive Surf School, who does wonderful surf plus Stand Up Paddle Boarding lessons for kids and adults from the beach. (He also does free diving – think Luc Besson in La Grande Bleu circa 1989 – but maybe not for the kids!) We also love kayaking up here too, it’s so fab and a great way to explore the coast on a calm day.

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Matt and Barry at CausewayCoasteringNI are a brilliant duo to encourage your kids to face their fears and experience a multi-sensory, adrenaline-rushed day out climbing rocks and jumping off into the sea. Believe me, it’s scary at first, but so exhilarating and kids LOVE the adventure of it. If you’d prefer the river life to ocean life, then try water skiing on The Bann river at Coleraine.

https://alivesurfschool.com/

http://www.causewaycoasteering.com  .

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10. Golf lessons

Contact Royal Portrush, home of The Open 2019, to book a lesson for the budding Rory McIlroys in your family. The scenery is wonderful in the links course, not that all kids will notice to be honest, but the fresh air, the walking and the concentration of the put will build focus as well as an appetite for lunch or dinner in the Ramore afterwards!  

https://www.royalportrushgolfclub.com

 

FOOD | SIDE SALADS TO DIE FOR

Who says salads have to be boring?! One of my favourite dishes, the sexy salad comes into its own in Summer and looks as delicious as it tastes. Packed with nutritious raw veg, fruit, protein and grains in rainbow colours and crunchy textures, salads are more than just a side - and can make a meal come alive. Any of these recipes can be adapted to suit your own tastes - and don't be afraid to add prawns/ tofu/ whatever turns you on to make it a meal in itself.

PS If you decide to trial any of these recipes, do tag me on social and let me know your verdict!  @FWORDSONLINE

 Superfood Salad

Superfood Salad.jpg

Ingredients

  • sprouting broccoli, blanched and grilled

  • butternut squash, sliced and roasted

  • edamame beans, blanched

  • bulls blood leaves

  • shredded red cabbage

  • shredded cos lettuce

  • quinoa, cooked in veg stock

  • crispy quinoa

  • chopped mint

  • chopped parsley

  • alfa alfa cress

  • 1 tsp coconut yoghurt

  • olive oil for seasoning

 

Method

  1. wash and prep all veg

  2. season broccoli and sprouting broccoli with salt & extra virgin olive oil

  3. Using grill or heavy based griddle pan, grill broccoli florets quickly until lightly marked and leave to cool at room temp

  4. assemble salad in large bowl with all the veg

 

Dressing: add a squeeze of lemon juice to coconut yoghurt and mix to lightly coat the salad, just before serving.

 

Cobb Salad with Green Goddess Dressing

Cobb salad is an American classic of chopped tomatoes, avocado, leaves and crisp bacon. This version adds blue cheese, sourdough croutons and a mouth watering green goddess dressing.

Ingredients

·         sourdough 1/4 loaf

·         avocado 1 small, peeled and cut into chunks

·         blue cheese 75g, crumbled

·         mini plum tomatoes 100g, quartered

·         watercress 50g, leaves only

·         smoked streaky bacon 4 slices, cooked until crisp

 

Green Goddess Dressing

·         spring onions 2, chopped including the green bits

·         lemon 1/2, juiced

·         mayonnaise 2 tbsp

·         basil 1/2 small bunch, chopped

·         chives 1/2 small bunch, chopped

 

Method

  • STEP 1

Heat the oven to 200C/ fan 180C/gas 6.

  • STEP 2

Cut the sourdough into chunks, toss in olive oil and bake for 10-15 mins until crisp and golden.

  • STEP 3

Whizz all the dressing ingredients to a purée in a small food processor adding 2-3 tbsp water to loosen it (you want to be able to drizzle it) and season.

  • STEP 4

Arrange all the salad ingredients except the bacon in separate piles on a plate. Drizzle over the dressing and break over the bacon.

 

Herb, Watermelon & Rice Noodle Salad

Ingredients

·         rice vermicelli noodles 2 nests

·         watermelon 400g, cut into large chunks

·         bean sprouts a handful, blanched and refreshed

·         mint a bunch, leaves torn

·         Thai basil a bunch, leaves torn

·         coriander a bunch, leaves torn

·         spring onions 3, finely chopped

·         sesame seeds 1 tbsp, toasted

 

Dressing

·         rice wine vinegar 2 tbsp

·         fish sauce 2 tbsp

·         caster sugar 1 tbsp

·         bird's-eye chilli 2, finely chopped

 

Method

  • STEP 1

Cook the rice noodles following pack instructions and refresh in ice-cold water.

  • STEP 2

Drain, then put in a bowl along with the watermelon and bean sprouts.

  • STEP 3

In a separate bowl, mix together all of the dressing ingredients with 1 tbsp of water, stirring to dissolve the sugar.

  • STEP 4

Add the herbs and spring onions to the noodles and melon along with the dressing, toss well and pile onto a serving platter.

 

Halloumi with lemony lentils, chickpeas & beets

Ingredients

·         200g puy lentils

·         2 lemons

·         1 red onion, finely sliced

·         3tbsp extra virgin olive oil

·         3 tbsp capers, roughly chopped

·         400g can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

·         250g cooked beetroot, cut into matchsticks

·         ½ small pack parsley, roughly chopped

·         250g halloumi, cut into 8 slices

Method

1.     Cook lentils in a pan of boiling water for 20-25 mins or until just done. Meanwhile, squeeze the juice from one lemon into a bowl. Add the onion and scrunch together with a pinch of salt to pickle slightly. Set aside.

2.     Finely zest the remaining lemon and set aside for the halloumi. Squeeze the juice into a jam jar or jug. Add the oil with a pinch of seasoning and the capers – shake well and set aside. When the lentils are ready, drain and tip into a large serving bowl with the chickpeas. Toss with the dressing straight away, then toss through the beets, parsley, pickled onions and their juice.

3.     Heat a frying pan over a medium heat and fry the halloumi for 1-2 mins each side or until golden brown. Toss with the lemon zest, then place on top of your salad to serve.

 

Grilled Watermelon & Avocado salad with lime & feta

Ingredients

Salad

·         3 slices avocados halved, pit removed and sliced into 1/2" thick

·         1/2 large seedless watermelon sliced into 1/2" thick wedges

·         1 slices red onion sliced into 1/4 " thick

·         4 tbsp mint

·         4 oz feta cheese crumbled

·         3 tsp red hot chili pepper seeded, deveined and finely minced

Dressing

·         2 tsp Dijon mustard

·         2 tsp honey

·         1/4 cup lime juice

·         1/4 cup olive oil

·         Salt and pepper to taste

Method

  1. Preheat grill to medium high heat and lightly grease to prevent sticking.

  2. Add the watermelon, avocados and onions in batches, flipping once you see deep grill marks on each side. Remove from the grill and allow to cool to room temperature.

  3. Once cool, dice the watermelon and avocado and add to a bowl along with the onions. Season with a pinch each of salt and pepper.

  4. Meanwhile, mix together the Dijon, honey, and lime juice. Slowly whisk in the olive oil until completely emulsified and then season with salt and pepper to taste. Pour the dressing over the watermelon and avocado and very gently toss.

  5. When ready to serve, garnish the salad with feta cheese, mint and chili peppers. Enjoy at room temperature.

Don't miss my favourite BBQ recipes here! http://www.thefwords.com/blog/2019/7/19/food-bbq-recipes-for-every-guest


FOOD | BBQ Recipes for every guest

There's something about cooking and eating out in the fresh air that's makes me feel Summer has REALLY arrived! Whether you opt for a beachside disposable BBQ á deux or fire up the grill for a sophisticated soiree, here's how to make your Summer menu an instant hit!

Prawns, steak, burgers and sausages are a given at most barbecues, but with so many friends and family avoiding certain foods for dietary or health reasons, it's always good to have options. Here are a few of my go-to BBQ recipes to make every guest feel welcome, from vegan to gluten free!

Top tip, when cooking for guests with different dietary requirements, line the grill with foil or clean it between dishes to avoid cross contamination. You can do this by heating the empty grill at the highest temperature and letting it burn for 20 minutes / until all residue has charred, before scraping clean with a brush. I prefer to play safe and simple by using a separate disposable barbecue for anyone with a food allergy or for vegan/ veggie dishes.

 VEGAN

Chickpea & Sweetcorn Burgers

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Ingredients

·         1 x 400 g tin of chickpeas

·         1 x 340 g tin of sweetcorn

·         ½ a bunch of fresh coriander

·         ½ teaspoon paprika

·         ½ teaspoon ground coriander

·         ½ teaspoon ground cumin

·         1 lemon

·         3 heaped tablespoons plain flour , plus extra for dusting

·         rapeseed oil

·         1 small round lettuce

·         2 large ripe tomatoes

·         tomato ketchup

·         4 wholemeal burger buns

 

Method

  1. Drain chickpeas and sweetcorn and tip into food processor. Add half of coriander leaves and all the stalks to the processor.

  2. Add spices, flour and a pinch of sea salt, finely grate in the lemon zest, then pulse until combined, but not smooth - you want to retain a bit of texture.

  3. On a flour-dusted surface, divide and shape the mixture into 4 equal-sized burgers, around 2cm thick. Place in fridge for 30 minutes to firm up.

  4. BBQ on grill for 10 minutes, or until golden and cooked through, turning halfway.

  5. Meanwhile, wash & dry lettuce leaves and finely slice the tomatoes.

  6. Squeeze a large dollop of ketchup onto the base of each roll (toast if you like) and top with the burgers. Layer over a couple of slices of tomato, a lettuce leaf, a few coriander leaves and finally the burger tops. Delicious served with a fresh green salad.

 

 VEGGIE

Halloumi Burgers

Ingredients

  • 250g halloumi cheese, cut into 8 thick slices

  • 1 tbsp olive oil

  • 4 brioche rolls

  • 4 tbsp hummus

  • 1 large ripe tomato, thinly sliced

  • 4 crisp lettuce leaves

  • 4 tbsp fresh tomato salsa

Method

1.    Heat BBQ until coals are glowing white hot. Brush halloumi slices with olive oil and cook each side for 2-3 mins or until golden.

2.    Split the brioche rolls (toast briefly on both sides if you like) and spread the bottom halves with hummus. Add tomato and halloumi, finish with the lettuce and salsa and top with the other half of the roll.

 

GLUTEN FREE

If you want to keep things super simple, gluten free sausages from Corries Butchers in Promise bread rolls (Sainsbury's) go down a treat, especially with kids. For something a little more sophisticated...

Grilled Lemon Chicken with Pineapple Salsa

Ingredients

For the grilled chicken:

·         4 tbsp olive oil

·         2-3 lemons, juiced

·         1 1/2 tbsp soy sauce

·         2 cloves garlic, minced

·         1/2 tsp oregano

·         1/4 tsp salt

·         1/4 tsp pepper

·         4-6 skinless, boneless chicken breasts

For the pineapple salsa:

·         350g diced pineapple

·         1 red pepper, diced

·         35g diced red onion

·         1/4 cup chopped coriander

·         1 lime, juiced

 

Method

1.    Whisk together olive oil, lemon juice, soy sauce, garlic, oregano, salt, and pepper.

2.    Coat chicken breasts in the marinade and refrigerate for at least 30 mins.

3.    Barbecue 6-8 minutes per side

4.    Remove chicken from grill and let it rest, tented with aluminum foil, for 5 minutes        before serving.

5.    Meanwhile, make the pineapple salsa. In a medium bowl, toss together the      pineapple, red pepper, red       onion, coriander and lime juice until well combined. (Replace pineapple with mango if preferred)

6.    Refrigerate until ready to serve.

 CHICKEN

 Buffalo Chicken with Wedged Ranch Salad

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Ingredients

·         sea salt flakes 1 tbsp

·         soft light brown sugar 1 tbsp

·         smoked paprika 1 tsp

·         garlic granules 1 tsp

·         dried oregano 1 tsp

·         whole chicken thighs 12

·         unsalted butter 150g

·         4 garlic cloves, finely chopped

·         Tabasco sauce 125ml

·         gherkins/pickles to serve

 

WEDGED RANCH SALAD

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·         mayonnaise 100g

·         soured cream 100g

·         white wine vinegar 3 tbsp

·         garlic granules 1 tsp

·         Worcestershire sauce 1 tbsp

·         dill - handful, finely chopped

·         flat-leaf parsley a handful, chopped

·         iceberg lettuce 1

·         hazelnuts - handful, toasted and roughly chopped

 

Method

·         STEP 1

Mix together the salt, sugar, paprika, garlic granules and oregano, put the chicken thighs into a baking dish, sprinkle over the salt-and-spice mix and rub into the chicken really well. Leave to marinate for 1-4 hours.

·         STEP 2

Heat a BBQ to medium-high with the coals banked up one side, or with one of the gas burners on high with the others off (see notes below). Put the chicken thighs, skin- side down, over the coals for 5-10 minutes or until golden and charred, then move to the indirect heat side and cook for another 35-40 minutes with a lid on, turning and moving every 5 minutes until cooked through.

·         STEP 3

Meanwhile, whisk the mayo, soured cream, white wine vinegar, garlic granules, Worcestershire sauce, herbs and some seasoning in a bowl, then chill. Wedge the lettuce and chill.

·         STEP 4

Melt the butter in a small pan, fry the chopped garlic gently for 3-4 minutes or until it smells fragrant, then tip in the Tabasco sauce. Pour out into a large bowl. When the chicken is cooked, tip into the buffalo sauce and toss really well. Serve immediately with the wedged lettuce smothered in ranch dressing and sprinkled with chopped hazelnuts, and pickles on the side.

 

SEAFOOD

 

BBQ Scallops (starter)

Ingredients

·         scallops 4 large, cleaned (keep the shells)

·         butter 4 tbsp

·         shallot ½, finely chopped

·         capers 2 tbsp, roughly chopped

·         lemon 1, juiced

·         flat-leaf parsley ½ a small bunch, finely chopped

 

Method

·         STEP 1

Heat a barbecue or grill to medium-high. Put each scallop into a shell with 1 tbsp of butter and some seasoning.

 

·         STEP 2

Put onto the barbecue or under the grill for 5 minutes until lightly charred. Meanwhile, mix the shallot, capers, lemon juice and parsley, then spoon over the scallops and serve.

 

Smoked Trout Salad (main)

Seafood main - Smoked Trout Salad.jpg

Ingredients

·         golden caster sugar 2 tbsp

·         sea trout 200g fillet

·         fine salt 4 tbsp 

·         small new potatoes 300g

·         natural yogurt 4 tbsp

·         tahini 1 tbsp

·         dill chopped to make 1 tbsp, plus a little extra  

·         lemon juice 1/2 tbsp, plus more to serve 

·         extra-virgin olive oil

·         baby or Lebanese cucumbers 2, cut in half lengthways and halved across the middle

·         radishes 2, finely sliced into a bowl of ice water 

·         edible flowers to serve (optional) 

 

Method

·         STEP 1

Put the trout in a dish that it fits snugly. Mix the salt and sugar to make a cure and sprinkle it on the trout. Cover with clingfilm and weight down with tins. Chill in the fridge for a couple of hours.

·         STEP 2

Cook the potatoes in boiling salted water for 12-15 minutes, or until tender, then drain. Once the trout has been in the cure for a couple of hours, gently wash it under a cold tap and pat dry.

·         STEP 3

To smoke the trout and potatoes, carefully set light to the corner of an egg box and put it in the barbecue. Cover it with 2 handfuls of cherrywood or other wood chips and put the trout and potatoes on a wire rack above it. Close the lid – making sure all the vents are closed, and smoke for half an hour or so (relight if it goes out). Finish the trout in the oven at 130C/fan 110C/gas 1 for 15-18 minutes, or until it’s opaque and cooked.

·         STEP 4

Meanwhile, whisk the yogurt, tahini, dill, 1/2 tbsp lemon juice, 1 tbsp olive oil and a pinch of salt to make the dressing. Set a griddle pan over a high heat and scatter with salt. Put the cucumbers, cut-side down on the griddle and grill, turning once, until char marks appear (about 5 minutes).

FACE| SIGNATURE SUMMER SCENTS

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I adore introducing new fragrances as the seasons change, particularly in Summer when a certain scent will forever bring back memories of a special occasion or travel destination. (Bougainvillea and Magnolia always remind me of France and Italy, while citrus-y scents remind me of Spain…) There's something so delicious about spritzing perfume on warm skin before heading out for the evening. From daytime florals to heady evening scents, take your pick from my menu of six gorgeous new scents for Summer 2019. All can be picked up at usual perfumeries, department stores or duty free.

Boucheron Orange de Bahia

For a touch of true luxury, this citrus aromatic fragrance for women and men emanates Brazilian sunshine and is both zesty and sweet. An opening of orange and green mandarin essence leads on to notes of rose, fig leaf and amber woods.

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TOCCA Stella

With notes of blood orange and spicy lily, TOCCA Stella is both flirty and sensual. Resting on a base of sandalwood and sheer musk, this fragrance smells like warm Summer skin and works on any occasion, night or day. Plus you'll want to whip out that gorgeous bottle at every opportunity! This was my personal fave at a recent summer scents press event.

KENZO World Power

I adore the striking packaging of this woody aromatic fragrance with notes of cypress, sea salt and tonka bean. Part-inspired by Kenzo Fashion, World Power is modern and bold, with a complete absence of floral notes. This modern oriental is all about asserting your individuality, a celebration of the real you!  

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Jimmy Choo Floral

Choose a scent as stylish as your shoes (if you're lucky!) with this sophisticated perfume inspired by one of my favourite blossoms, Magnolia. (Italian and French Riviera, anyone?) This delicate feminine fragrance is floral, fruity and musky with notes of Bergamot, Nectarine, Magnolia and Blond Wood. The minty-pistachio green colour evokes all sorts of summery feelings and it’s one that all the beauty editors are raving about. I can understand why!

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Coach Floral Blush

This little floral number comes in the prettiest packaging and would make a gorgeous gift for someone special - or a gift to self of course!  Floral Blush has top notes of  Goji Berry and Grapefruit with a Peony and Peach heart on a musk base.

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Mont Blanc EXPLORER

Last but not least, one for the men. Montblanc EXPLORER is an energising woody aromatic scent, with fresh green Bergamot notes contrasted with Vetiver and Patchouli. Definitely one for an adventurous spirit, I chose this for my current squeeze this summer, so I get to spritz some on too!  Well, ya know, boyfriends with benefits, right? 😊