Saturday, 23 March 2013

The Whole truth and nothing but

Hello lovelies! It's been a busy few days and I've got a little Saturday afternoon sleepiness going on, so do excuse any ramblings. I hope you're having a good weekend. We're still in the grip of winter here, but at least it gives us the excuse to cosy up and drink hot chocolate. I'm getting addicted to the stuff. It's happened once before. While travelling I was drinking hot chocolate in Brazil in 30 degree heat. What can I say, an obsession is and obsession.

So, here goes with the round-up. First things first, Wednesday's dinner deserves a mention. Rare grilled rib eye steak with Luann's kale salad and roasted root vegetables. We cleaned our plates.


Thursday started the only way this gal knows how. Still loving a bit of anchovy on my roast vegetable frittata. Ooh, those salty little buggers!

 
Lunch was more fishy fun in the form of sardines. Full of calcium but also rather stinky. Apologies, once again, to my colleagues. Served with leftover salad from dinner the night before with avocado added for fat, fun and frugality (aka using it up).

 
Half a pear. They keep very well cut.

 
I really wanted to go for a walk, particularly as I had a long drive ahead later in the afternoon, but the rain would not let up.
 
Soooo, I left a little early to get some treadmill time in at the hotel. I'd been invited to a work party in the Cotswolds, about 90 minutes' drive away. I got there around 4.30pm and got settled in.
 
First things first, I hotffooted it to the gym and did an hour's walk on the treadmill reading my book. While there I picked up an apple to help stop myself being tempted by the free biscuits in the room. It worked! (I also hid the biscuits!).
 
 
My room was rather cosy, crisp and clean.

 
I got ready and headed down for the drinks reception at 6.30pm. I'd decided not to drink alcohol, so stuck to fizzy water all night. I caught up with colleagues until dinner was served around 8pm.
 
It was good. Let's see if you spot the theme...
 
First up was rillette (?!) of duck with Oriental salad and a hoi sin dressing. Very yummy and just the right portion size for a starter.

 
Next up was braised leg of lamb with carrots and green beans, fondant potatoes and a red wine jus. This was delicious and, impressively, stayed nice and hot. Even the veggies. Now that's good mass catering.

 
To finish? White chocolate and champagne torte with raspberry coulis. I'm told it was good - I donated mine to a fellow diner!

 
Did you spot the theme? All the food was round! Cliched, but when it tastes good, I won't argue. I had good chats with my fellow diners, who were very supportive of me photographing my food and even suggested I take a menu with me so I remembered what we had. Good tip! I snuck off around 10.30pm back to my room and left them to dance the night away.
 
Bright and early Friday morning I made my way to breakfast and bumped into someone from our London office I only met recently on the way. We had a good chat over a good meal. Fried eggs, mushrooms, bacon and grilled tomato went down a treat.

 
Followed by some fresh fruit.

 
And another hour on the treadmill.
 
I was surrounded by beautiful lakes and scenery, but the rain and wind were not letting up, so I got my steps in any way I could. God, it seems to take soooo much longer on the treadmill, though!

 
After a very enjoyable stay at the Cotswolds Four Pillars Hotel I made my way to visit an office where a company which is part of ours are based. I had fun listening to customer calls and meeting new people.
 
Then, lunchtime came. And I went to Disney World.
 
 
Yes, I was in Cheltenham where a huge and beautiful branch of Whole Foods recently opened. I actually gasped out loud when I beheld it's gorgeousness. It's JUST like the ones in the States. Eeeeeeeee!
 
I didn't have long and I was hungry, so I ran straight for the hot food bar. Oh God it was good.
 
Chimichurri bavette and roasted butternut squash with onions, cranberries, parsley and sage. Heaven.
 
 
Accompanied by apple and parsnip soup. Divine.

 
No words necessary.


 
Fresh ground spices.


Grind your own nut butter.
 

 
 
It was really busy, which was great to see.
 
I bought a chai latte for the road, some pitta chips for The Boy (they're like crack to him), some organic prunes for a recipe and these babies:
 
 
Reader, the pack is empty because I ate them all on the way home. And I don't care. They are very, very tasty. I didn't get long at Whole Foods, but I will be going back and spending a day there. It was great!
 
I drove the two hours back to work, finished up some stuff there and then we headed straight over to my Mum's for dinner and to play cards.
 
There was quite the spread.



I filled my plate with smoked salmon and salad. Sliced beetroot and garlic drizzled with olive oil and vinegar tastes amazing with smoked salmon.
 
And then I found this bar of 70% dark chocolate with raspberry in the chocolate drawer. Yes, they have a chocolate drawer and yes, I always check it out! It was very nice. I had rather a lot.
 

 
And then I had some apple crumble cheesecake. Which was amazing. It was a bit of a sugar binge really, but I was tired and dinner wasn't terribly filling, so I went with it.
 
Back on the wagon today with my frittata with the last of the anchovies. Bye bye little fishies :(

 
I was well up for Real Military Fitness at 9.30am, especially after last night's sugar fest, but they called it off with 30 minutes to go due to people dropping out because of the bad weather. Wusses! I went for a brisk 90 minute walk instead. Boom.
 
I assembled this Albacore tuna salad for lunch at breakfast time, and was glad I had!

 
Andy was off helping his friend with some gardening, so I toodled in to town to get some bits and scored some bargain undies in the John Lewis sale. I celebrated with a hot chocolate made with semi-skimmed milk and Green and Black's cocoa powder.


We were due to have a couple Andy knows to stay tonight but the weather is so bad where they live they're staying put. So, it's a chill one for us, which is just as well, because next week is manic, yo!

What's your current food/drink obsession?
Hot chocolate/chai lattes and salty food. I think my body is asking for calcium and sodium!

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