What to do on a Sunday when all of the pubs are busy or you fancy a bit of a change? Mix up your Sunday lunch and head to a lovely little Italian of course!

Cacciari’s has two locations – 82 Old Brompton Road & 82 Pembroke Road, both in Kensington. We headed over to Pembroke road to try out some of the lovely Italian cuisine.

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It was very quiet and at one point we even had the place to ourselves, but what do you expect at 4pm on a Sunday afternoon in an area rife with pubs offering Britain’s favourite, the classic “Sunday roast.” However, all we fancied was an Italian so this was perfect.

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The menu is Cacciari’s doesn’t just offer your bog standard pasta and pizza, but some lovely meat and seafood dishes too such as; squid, scallops, beef tenderloin, veal and sea bream. You’ll have to check the menu out for yourself here as I could go on and on.

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I opted for the spinach and ricotta ravioli (£12.50) which was packed full of garlic (my favourite) and the balance of the ricotta and spinach was just right.

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George had the spaghetti carbonara (£9.50), he definitely made the winning decision! It was perfectly cooked and seasoned. The sauce was like no other, intensely creamy and rich but with the right balance of salt too. Many carbonara’s can be overly creamy yet bland, however this definitely packed in some flavour.

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They offer some wines by the pot (500ml). We chose the house wine by the pot (£11.25) as we were keen to have a cheaper meal and I have to say it wasn’t too bad. It was no Malbec but definitely worth opting for if you don’t want to break the bank.

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Overall this was a lovely little alternative to your typical Sunday lunch and we loved every moment of it. Good service and a wonderful menu!

If you want to visit: 82 Pembroke Road, W8 6NX or 82 Old Brompton Road, SW7 3LQ

Take a peak at the website: https://www.cacciaris.co.uk

 

 

 

Don’t be fooled by the “chocolate mousse” title, this is a healthy version of your regular chocolate pudding.

Serves: 3

Ingredients:

  • 2 medium sized ripe avocados
  • The zest of one orange
  • The juice of one and a half large oranges
  • 2tbsp honey
  • Either 3tbsp of high quality cocoa and 20g of melted 85% dark chocolate (I’d recommend Green & Black’s dark chocolate) OR if you can’t find a health food shop nearby for good quality cocoa, 2tbsp of good quality hot chocolate powder will do and 40g dark chocolate

You will need:

  • A food blender
  • Three ramekins
  • A fine grater

1. First of all, cut the avocado’s in half and remove the stone. Next, shell out the flesh with a spoon and place into the blender.

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2. Extract the orange juice using a fork or a juicer. Using a grater, grate the zest off of the orange and leave in a separate bowl to place on the chocolate avocado mix at the end.

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3. By now you should have your honey, cocoa (or hot chocolate powder) and orange juice prepared.

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4. Next, add the honey, cocoa or hot chocolate and orange juice, then blend

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4. Once this has blended, melt your dark chocolate by placing it in a glass bowl and putting it on top of a pot full of simmering water – how you would normally melt chocolate! Then drizzle the melted chocolate into the blender and blend. If you want to add more orange, more dark chocolate or more honey to your mix to accommodate your tastebuds then you can experiment with the flavours.

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5. Add the mix into ramekins and add the zest on top of the dessert and leave in the fridge to cool for an hour.

Each serving offers around: 324kcal, 22.6g fat, 30.5g carbohydrate, 12.2g protein, 9.3g fibre

Enjoy!

Oats are always my “go to” when I’m in a rush or needing some comforting warmth. However, when I woke up this morning with a horrendous cold, I knew I had to up my health game, so I cooked myself up a lovely bowl of oats with a nutritional twist.

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Packed full of protein, energy and antioxidants – this 340 calorie breakfast is one for a busy work day or a day when you wake up feeling like you need a health boost, like me!

Oats

Benefits; Slow release energy, filling, good portion of protein and fibre, good for cardiovascular health & lowering cholesterol levels.

100g contains; 389 kcal, 7g fat, 66g carbohydrate, 11.0g fibre, 17g protein

I used 40g

Manuka Honey

Benefits; Proven to be effective in fighting infection – perfect if you’re coming down with a cold.

100g contains; 348 kcal, 0.1g fat, 86.9g carbohydrate, 0.2g fibre, 0.2g protein

I used 1tsp

Pumpkin Seeds

Benefits; Packed full of magnesium, contain a wide variety of nutrients including manganese to copper, protein and zinc. They contain plant compounds known as phytosterols and free-radical scavenging antioxidants, which can give your health an added boost.

100g contains; 618 kcal, 49.1g fat, 10.7g carbohydrate, 6.0g fibre, 30.2g protein

I used 2g

Blueberries

Benefits; Believed to have the highest level of antioxidants of any fruit or vegetable.

100g contains; 57 kcal, 0.3g fat, 14.0g carbohydrate, 2.4g fibre, 0.7g protein

I used 20g

Chia Seeds

Benefits; They’re loaded with antioxidants, they are low carb – almost all the carbs are fibre, they expand in your stomach and keep you fuller for longer, high in quality protein – around 14% of each portion is protein and they are also high in Omega-3 fatty acids.

100g contains; 447 kcal, 35g fat, 4.5g carbohydrate, 37.5g fibre, 20.4g protein

I used 4g

Almond Milk

Benefits; Not only is almond-milk cholesterol free, according to the American Heart Association, monounsaturated fats, such as those found in almond milk, are good for your heart if you substitute them for saturated fats, such as those found in cow’s milk. It’s also low in calories, so it’s good if you’re on a diet.

100ml contains; 24 kcal, 1.1g fat, 3.og carbohydrate, 0.2g fibre, 0.5g protein

I used 200ml

Dried Cranberries

Benefits; I added these more for the sweetness factor that anything else but cranberries are proven to prevent Urinary Tract Infections which can be highly unpleasant and potentially quite dangerous for women in the long run.

100g contains; 347 kcal, 0.7g fat, 82.8g carbohydrate, 3.8g fibre, 0.4g protein

I used 10g

Bananas

Bananas are an excellent source of vitamin B6 and contain moderate amounts of vitamin C, manganese and dietary fibre. Ripe bananas were also found to contain serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine.

100g contains; 89 kcal, 0.3g fat, 23.0g carbohydrate, 2.6g fibre, 1.1g protein

I used 60g

This brekkie is perfect for a cold winter morning and it will keep you going throughout your day!

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The Punchbowl in Mayfair is hidden away on a side street off of Berkeley Square. It is one of London’s oldest pubs and the beautiful Grade II listen building makes a wonderful setting for a drink or dinner out. Having opened in 1729 and being formerly owned by Guy Ritchie means that the pub has both old and new history.

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The Dining Room 

Sometimes all you’re in the mood for on a Friday night is traditional pub food, but with so many chain pubs cluttering the streets nowadays, it can sometimes be hard to find freshly made pub food that is worth your money.

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We ate in the dining room on the first floor which offers modern pub food. The ground floor is the main pub level and this offers the same menu except you are seated in the heart of the pub, this seemed incredibly busy and bustling but a little too warm and loud for a quiet Friday night dinner.

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The decor in the dining room was modernised and fresh whilst still offering a cosy feel. Classics such as “fish and chips” and “pie of the day” are on the menu but everything is made freshly made and the vegetables are sourced from the New Covent Garden market. The dishes aren’t overpriced for a pub in Mayfair and the service we received was outstanding.

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A gorgeous Malbec

For starters we had hummus and flatbread (£3.50) sourdough (£1) and ham hock with piccalilli (£8)

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For mains George had pie of the day (£16.50) which was steak and ale, mash and kale. The kale was cooked with salt which made it so much more delicious. I had the pumpkin risotto (£12.50) which was a very hearty portion and incredibly rich and delicious. Cooked to perfection!

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We had to fit in a pudding..Bailey’s cheesecake and raspberry sorbet, delicious!

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The 18th Century building has been renovated and jazzed up using artistic paintings covering the walls, making it a very interesting place to be indeed.

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The Punchbowl is perfect for a quiet dining experience in Mayfair where after your meal you can stroll downstairs and enjoy the buzzing atmosphere of the pub. If that doesn’t impress you, then the amazing customer service and delicious food certainly will!

If you want to visit: 41 Farm Street, London, W1J 5RP

Take a peak at the website: www.punchbowllondon.com

Friday was a special night for me, I discovered my favourite new restaurant in London.

I’ve always had a love for antipasti, meat & cheese boards. Whether it’s because they remind me of Summer holidays abroad or family buffets at Christmas, there really is nothing better. Antipasti boards are sociable and casual, normally enjoyed over a bottle of wine and the constant vocal admiration over the variety of food in-front of you, such as the “tangy French cheese” you just tried for the first time and how well it “compliments the chutney.”

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Cork & Bottle have an extensive 34 page wine list

‘Cork & Bottle’ just off of Leicester Square is where I found paradise! Making my way down the spiral staircase I was greeted by a warm, cosy and bustling wine bar with every table in sight packed full. After-work glasses of wine were being had at the bar, whilst full blown meals were being enjoyed on the tables around us. The red tiled floor, wooden stools, quaint glass framed photos and bottles of wine decorating the room transported me to a different country in an instant.

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Despite it being incredibly busy, all of the staff were as polite as ever. As we waited, we eyed up all of the meats and cheeses in the ‘deli style’ counter.

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We were only made to wait twenty minutes for a table on a Friday night with no reservation. To our upmost surprise we were given the best table in the restaurant after the group before us left early – we were informed that normally it can take up to two weeks to book ‘the booth.” It must have been our lucky day!

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The booth

Tucked away from the main part of the wine bar and the restaurant we had the space all to ourselves.

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Whilst we sipped on a bottle of cabernet sauvignon, we read through the menu and really struggled to not over-order.

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We went for the duck liver pate to start and a selection of cheeses and the Cork & Bottle plate for a main to share – needless to say, we were stuffed.

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Duck liver pate

The lovely lady who served us offered to pick our cheeses for us and oh my, she did a good job. The “Vacherin” cheese found at the bottom of the cheese menu is the gooey, delicious mess that you can see  pictured below, it was like a brie but creamier and more rich, I would definitely recommend it.

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There was another antipasti plate to accompany the plate above (on the right), which took a little longer to prepare and included fried calamari and perfectly cooked duck

Cork & Bottle is my new favourite place and I’ll be back here very soon!

If you want to visit:

44-46 Cranbourn Street,
London WC2H 7AN
United Kingdom