Coconut Stracciatella Ice Cream

Coconut Stracciatella Ice Cream

Last Monday we transferred Nino into his own room. Six and a half months is a little later than we’d originally intended, but what with three weeks in Italy and then a wedding in Lithuania, it felt like moving him before all that upheaval might just be more trouble than its worth. And while he’s not quite yet a twelve hour sleeping beauty (do these babies really exist, or are they an invention to make us buy books and tear our hair out at ungodly hours of the morning?), I’m pleased to report that our nights are – touch wood they stay that way – a whole lot smoother. I guess if I had been sleeping next to the fridge I might be more inclined to indulge in a midnight feast or two too . . . Continue reading

Mint Oreo Cookies & Cream Popsicles

Mint Oreo Popsicles

At its outset, summer seems so long and lazy and full of endless possibility. My birthday falls at the end of July and I’m this season’s baby through and through: the summer months are my absolute favourites and, as August draws in, I start to get twitchy about the darker evenings, the slowing of the sunshine and the way summer produce slowly begins to disappear from the shops. Sometimes I have to remind myself to live in the moment and enjoy each sunny day and outdoor dinner for what they’re worth.

Ice cream, incidentally, isn’t something I feel needs to be constrained to the summer months, but I’m definitely more inclined to want something cool and creamy for dessert when its warm outside. When Oreo got in touch while I was on holiday in Italy to see if I could develop a recipe using their brand new Mint Oreo flavour, I knew that an icy treat was on the cards.  Continue reading

Dark Chocolate Brownies with Salted Panko Crunch

Dark Chocolate Panko Brownies - 5

We’ve just got back from a whirlwind weekend in Lithuania celebrating the marriage of two very lovely friends. I’m tired, but the lugging a pram down a hill to the picturesque lakeside dinner setting and getting up at 4am to feed a baby confused by the time change tired, rather than the slow lazy sleepiness that comes with daytime drinking and dancing into the night. Weddings with a mini man in tow are an altogether different kettle of fish, and the night before the big day I was in bed by 9pm, snuggling down into the duvet and ordering up chocolate cake on room service. Continue reading

Mango & Turmeric Smoothie

Mango Turmeric Smoothie
I’m back! After three weeks of Italian sunshine, wine, pizza, pasta and a daily gelato (or two), we’re quickly slipping back into the groove of life with a lively six month old. One who now eats solid food, can sit unaided and is working on his crawl with all the ferocious determination you’d expect from the son of a personal trainer. Our days are full and joyous but also exhausting, so recipes like this mango and turmeric smoothie that are both simple and healthy are exactly what I need. With the added bonus that it can be sipped one-handed whilst preventing said baby from throwing himself off the changing table or under the sofa.  Continue reading

My Top Ten Italian Recipes

tiramisu with vin santo

I’m sure I’ll regret writing this, but for the last few nights Nino has been sleeping better. All that restorative snoozing means he’s bright eyed and bushy tailed the wrong side of 6am most mornings but, while exhausting in its own way, this has encouraged us as a family to make the most of our extra long days. Yes, we may be ready for lunch come 11am, but we’ve also packed in an exercise video or two, a walk round the park, breakfast, snacks, stories, several rounds of coffee, four outfit changes and maybe managed to read a blog or two. On a good day I might even use the time while Nino is down for his first nap to post a recipe of my own . . .

Today, I’m afraid, isn’t one such day: we’re off to Italy on Sunday and in between some freelance recipe development and raising said little human, I haven’t had a chance to successfully re-test and photograph my latest creation. What I do have, however, is  a round up of my top ten Italian recipes from the archives. I can’t take you all to Italy with me, but this is hopefully the next best thing. We’re planning to eat pretty well while we’re away – including my birthday meal out and experimenting with a brand new pizza oven (which I’m inordinately excited about) – so do hop on over to Instagram and follow me if you’d like the latest updates. Continue reading

Sweet & Salty Nori Popcorn

Sweet & Salty Nori Popcorn - 4

In a couple of weeks I’ll be half way through my maternity leave. While I appreciate that I’m extremely lucky to be able to take a whole year working on the project that is our delicious baby boy, I also can’t quite imagine the time when I’ll spend a whole day apart from him. The longest I’ve gone so far is four hours at the hairdresser, most of which were spent texting his babysitting Nonna (my Mum) for updates and photos and missing him madly. Six months from now he’ll be sitting, talking, possibly walking, eating real food and showing even more of that fabulous personality we’re seeing more glimpses of every day. Reflecting on how quickly things are changing truly makes me savour every second of these precious days.  Continue reading

Apple & Peanut Butter Muffins

Apple & Peanut Butter Muffins - 2

When I was little, I swore I wouldn’t be the kind of grown up who constantly remarked on how much a child had grown: it’s such a boring conversation opener. And yet here I am, parent to an almost five month old and constantly amazed by how he changes every day. The time since February feels both long and life-changing and simultaneously gone in an instant, those snuggly newborn days a thing of the past and this bright, beady, blue-eyed little boy now making himself and his personality known.  Continue reading

White Chocolate Pistachio Butter Cups

White Chocolate Pistachio Butter Cups

Exactly one year ago to this day, I found out that I was pregnant with Nino. Of course we didn’t yet know exactly who that poppy seed-sized embryo inside me would turn out to be, but we were pretty sure he (yes he, somehow we knew from the start he’d be a boy) was going to change our lives. I still get goosebumps when I think about seeing those two blue lines for the very first time, Luke’s face when I crept back to the bedroom to tell him the news, his giant beam behind a pair of very bleary eyes . . . Continue reading

Fifteen Favourite Food Instagram Accounts

the little loaf instagram

I’ve long been an Instagram fan, but becoming a breastfeeding mum turned me into a proper addict. When I wasn’t googling ‘why won’t my baby sleep in . . .’ and ‘is it normal for my newborn to . . .’ during those first few weeks, I spent our wakeful nights scrolling through my favourite accounts, imagining all the delicious treats I would make when I had a moment without a baby attached to my chest.

Now we’re nearly four months in and Nino is sleeping through the night, I’m not quite so scroll happy, but still love spending time during the day to catch up with my favourite Instagram feeds. Ok, that’s a lie, Nino still wakes up a couple of times to snack on a good night, but he now nurses quickly in complete dark, the two of us rolling over and back into sleep as quickly as possible without the distraction of technology.

Regardless of when you get your Insta-fix, I thought it would be fun to compile a list of my favourites – a mixture of beautiful photos, sugar-laced treats, mum and baby eats and more. Enjoy!

Continue reading