Leek & Potato Soup with Guilt-free Croutons

I’ve realised with spring nearly here my weekends of enjoying comforting winter soup are numbered!  One thing to do: Get cooking!  This soup is my spin on a classic. It’s really economical, easy to make, low(ish) in fat, but best of all – it’s absolutely delicious. I can’t get enough of it.  Whilst I love soup, especially a creamy soup but I hate the calories, I’m forever fighting the battle of the shrinking jeans. Luckily I learnt a great tip on Weight Watchers years ago: Replace cream in soups with low fat Carnation evaporated milk! Genius: This scrimps on calories, but not taste. If you aren’t in a hurry, make this ahead of time as the flavour develops overnight… Guess what’s on the lunch menu for work this week?image (more…)

Urban Decay’s Naked 2 Eyeshadow Palette – Oh yes…

This eyeshadow palette has been on my wish-list for two long years. You can’t buy Urban Decay in New Zealand and, despite reading umpteen blogs singing the palette’s praises, I was nervous at the prospect of spending NZ$100 on getting an item shipped over from the UK/Australia without having the option of ‘trying before I buy’. Anyway. I finally got one… Knowing what I know now, I wish I’d just bitten the bullet two years ago and just bought it!TheBeautyFoodie-006

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Clinique Take the Day Off Balm – Review

I’m just in the final stages of writing a blog post on a few lots of beauty products I indulged in when I went to Singapore and Thailand in July (it’s rude not to take advantage of duty free, right?) Anyhow, it occurred to me that this little ripper of a product from Clinique, which has been around for a while, it’s just new to me, is so blinking good it deserves it’s own post: It’s my top beauty purchase of 2013. It is so good that I have been waxing lyrical about this lately, instead of recent makeup finds.

Clinique's Take the Day Off Cleansing Balm
Clinique’s Take the Day Off Cleansing Balm

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Handmade Easy Chocolate Balls!

My buddy Caroline and her family came over for Friday Takeaway night and we whipped these up (literally for dessert). We didn’t do it quite right, but that’s OK, they tasted amazeballs (get it?!) and in any case, you can learn from our mistakes!  These are so easy – and so good. So bad. But so good. I usually don’t know the meaning of the word ‘rich’ – but these are so rich, I ate three and was happily content.

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Orange Syrup Pound Cake Recipe

orange syrup pound cake recipe
This is orange syrup pound cake recipe isn’t mine – let’s get that out of the way! Nope, not mine, it’s from NZ Masterchef judge Ray McVinnie and it’s a recipe I’ve made regularly for close to 15 years.   It’s a proper ‘grown ups’ cake, although a 13 month old came for lunch recently and he scoffed it. So I guess it’s really a cake for all ages!

Ray’s base recipe uses lemons, but my orange tree is still going bananas, so I substituted the lemons for oranges and in the syrup I reduced the sugar content as the orange juice brings additional sweetness. I’ve made this using limes too: YUM.   I wrote a post a recipe a few months back that was quite similar to this one (I guess I like oranges!) but this recipe is much simpler and quicker, especially if you are lucky enough to own a cake mixer. Katie (My-Kitchen-Aid-Cake-Mixer) does a beautiful job of this for me, it’s a doddle and the cake itself only takes about 6 minutes to make. Besides, you’ve gotta love a cake that has batter requiring five ingredients (keeps the purists happy). (more…)

Caroline

Playing hair and beauty with Caroline is my idea of a perfect activity. She does my hair (she’s a super talented hairdresser). Then I wave my makeup brushes around getting creative.  All of this while drinking great coffee, listening to good beats, with great conversation to boot.  On this particular day, following Caroline hiding the silver in my hair, it was my turn to play makeup. We thought we’d go for a slightly different look – I was keen to try out any look that would take Caroline out of her reported comfort zone of neutral colours. Caroline kindly gave me free reign to do whatever look I liked! So, I went for a smokey eye using pinky/plummy and burgundy tones. We were both rapt with the look.  Here’s the products used: (more…)

How to fix a broken eyeshadow or blush!

imageI was mortified when I dropped my MAC eyeshadow on the floor (it was the colour ‘Brun’, in case you are interested).  At NZ$38 a pop, it was an amateur mistake. Unfortunately it was an eyeshadow I used every day (not on my eyes, by the way, on my brows, it’s my favourite brow powder).

But I’d heard that broken eyeshadows/blushers can be fixed and I was up for that!  So, after a five minute investment of time on You Tube to witness this first hand, I bolted to the chemist to buy some rubbing alcohol ($6) and presto – my eyeshadow is (almost) as good as new.  To be honest, the colour now it’s fixed is slightly lighter, but it works just fine. I’m rapt.

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