I’m a little bit obsessed with iced tea at the moment and I’m really enjoying finding new ways to brew my favourite teas into delicious and refreshing summer drinks. A couple of weeks ago I shared my peach iced tea recipe and today I have another delicious offering for you. This time I was approached by T2 to see if I’d like to try one of the recipes from their website.

This time I’ve tried Citrus Squash, a delicious blend of two fruity summer teas – Turkish Apple chunky and Southern Sunrise.

Turkish Apple Chunky, is one of the more simple offerings from T2 and just contains chunky pieces of apple. Its a great tea for blending with others and I’m definitely going to be experimenting with this one a lot.

Southern Sunrise is one of my new favourites. It contains apple, white hibiscus, apple pomace, sweet blackberry leaves, lemongrass and grapefruit peel making it deliciously fresh and fruity. It has the most amazing smell too.

To make the iced tea you will need:

  • 8 teaspoons Southern Sunrise
  • 8 teaspoons Turkish Apple Chunky
  • 500 ml/17 fl oz soda water
  • 1 orange, juiced
  • Orange and lemon slices, to garnish
  • 2L T2 Jug-a-lot

How to Make:

  1. Add teas to the infuser of your 2L T2 Jug-a-lot and half fill with boiling water. Infuse for 30 minutes then remove infuser and leave to cool for 1 hour.
  2. Add soda water and orange juice. Fill with ice and decorate with orange and lemon slices.

We really enjoyed drinking this lovely iced tea, even the kids liked it. Its a great alternative to a sugary fizzy drink and tastes like a healthy version of Fanta or Tango.

This would be ideal for summer barbecues and parties and its definitely one we’ll be making a lot this summer.

I have a few more iced tea recipes coming up over the next few weeks, so if you enjoyed this one keep your eyes peeled. You can also find lots of tea recipes on the T2 website.

*Thank you to T2 for sending me the tea featured in this post. All opinions and the tea jug are my own. 

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The V&A has always been one of my favourite museums, no other place houses so many beautiful objects and curiosities and such a variety of beautifully designed items. There is something new to discover in every corner and each time I visit I discover some new treasure to admire.

The area of South Kensington which houses the museums is lovingly referred to as Albertropolis, owing to the cluster of museums, being the brainchild of Prince Albert, husband of Queen Victoria. This includes the wonderful V&A a museum which celebrates all forms of art and design.

I often think of Prince Albert and his vision for the museum and how pleased he would be to see it enjoyed by millions of visitors every year. And I feel he would definitely approve of the latest addition to the museum. This week sees the launch of a new entrance, a new courtyard for visitors to relax in and an inspiring new exhibition space to house the museums temporary exhibitions. Collectively these new spaces are known as The Exhibition Road Quarter.

Yesterday I was lucky enough to be invited to see the new spaces before the opening this Friday. We were introduced to the project and shown round by curators and architects who worked on the new areas and I was blown away by the impressive finished space.

Having not previously had an entrance on Exhibition Road, alongside the Natural History Museum and The Science Museum, the V&A were keen to open up an area that had previously been home to a boiler house. Visitors to the museum have increased to over 8 million in recent years, so a new entrance was a necessity. Architect Amanda Levete and her practice AL_A won the project and got to work creating a space that is both functional and unique.

The new area is accessed from the street via The Aston Web Screen. This was formally a high and domineering wall, blocking views of the boiler house that had previously been on the site. The wall bore the scars of shrapnel damage from a WW2 bomb that had fallen near by. After a lot of hard work to get planning permission, the wall was opened up into columns, to allow visitors to walk in from the street. The new gates within the colonade were fabricated to include impressions of the original damage, paying homage to the past. I loved this design element, which is very in the spirit of the V&A.

Once you have passed through the impressive new colonnade, you are greeted by The Sackler Courtyard, the first porcelain courtyard in the world. This beautiful space is paved with 11,000 handmade tiles, which were inspired by the rich tradition of ceramics at the museum. The area also houses a new cafe. I absolutely love the contrast between the ornate Victorian building and the clean curves and bright modernity of the new tiled courtyard. Its wonderful to see external walls and features of the original building that were previously hidden away as well.

The Sackler Courtyard, V&A Exhibition Road Quarter, designed by AL_A ©Hufton+Crow

Past the courtyard you will find the new entrance to the museum The Blavatnik Hall. This lovely open space has glass walls bringing you a view into the museum garden. This area really brings the museum together and makes other areas of the museum far more accessible.

You can then reach the new exhibition space down a winding modern staircase. The huge open expanse that greets you as you enter the Sainsbury Gallery is breathtaking. It is built directly under the courtyard and creating a column free open space of this size, below ground is a hugely impressive feat of engineering. The hall is lit from above by skylights which also allow you to see in from the courtyard. I loved seeing peeps of the Victorian building above us. This was a rare opportunity to see the gallery empty. As it will be the home of the museums major temporary exhibitions it will usually be divided off by partitions.

At the event we had the chance to sample some of the lovely food from Benugo, that will be served in the courtyard cafe. This would be a great place to share coffee and a cake with friends or stop off for a delicious lunch. I’ve always really liked the other food areas at the museum and I think this is going to be another I’ll really enjoy visiting.

A special mention must also be made for the loos. I always judge a place by the quality of the facilities and all the visitors were blown away by the clean lines and stylish pink walls. No area of the new addition isn’t completely design focussed, this is the V&A after all. Both male and female toilets also have baby changing facilities, which I know makes life much easier for parents visiting with littles ones.

I really enjoyed my visit and really felt inspired by the light, design and creativity of the space. I loved the daring architecture, which begins its own chapter in the history of the museum, rather than just continuing the existing one. I love that its brings something completely new to a much-loved building without needing to emulate it. Most of all I love the idea of people visiting these new areas, making memories and having fun.

To celebrate the opening of the new spaces, the museum is hosting a week-long free public festival. Reveal offers the public the chance to experience the spaces before they host their first exhibitions this Autumn. There will plenty to see for all ages including art, fashion and family activities.

I would really recommend a visit, just to appreciate the amazing architecture and engineering behind this impressive project. I’m definitely looking forward to returning and seeing how the spaces are used in the future.

You can find out all about the museum, the festival and the new areas on the V&A website.

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I love exciting new launches and buying pretty things from lovely small businesses. I was delighted when the lovely Kate Beavis announced her new venture – The Vintage Pin Club. The club celebrates iconic items from the 20th Century, by recreating them as adorable little pins.

Each month the club brings you a new vintage inspired pin. I absolutely love pin badges and really like the idea of building a little collection of them. Each pin is limited to 100, so once they’re gone they’re gone. The pins are available as a monthly subscription or as one off pieces.

Kate sent me the first pin to try and being a vintage kitchen geek, the Pyrex themed pin was just perfect for me. As usual I’ve been a bad blogger and I’m only just posting about May’s badge. These are still available on Kate’s Etsy shop though.

The pins are lovely quality and I love the rose gold coloured base. This would look ridiculously cute on a cardigan with a pretty pink vintage dress, I might put mine on my apron as I’m always baking!

The pin for June is also completely gorgeous. It features a sweet little dog toy on wheels, another lovely nostalgic item. I am so exited to see what pins Kate comes up with next.

You can sign up to a subscription or buy one off pins over on Kate’s website.

*Big thanks to Kate for sending me the Pyrex pin to review. All opinions are my own.

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A couple of weeks ago I wrote about a two of the teas from the Whittard Gift box I received when I celebrated National Tea Day at their shop in Kingston. Today I thought I’d share some more of the goodies from my box. I’m really enjoying working my way through all the samples.

Part of the joy of tea to me is the preparation and serving of it. I love the ritual of brewing and serving it in a favourite cup or mug. I recently got this lovely initial mug from New Look and I love it!

The two teas I’m writing about today are twists on classic and popular teas. Both of them are very different, but have the addition of lovely cornflower petals.

First us was their famous Piccadilly Blend. This is a classic black tea with the additions of rose, strawberry and lotus, with cornflowers petals. I liked this one in the same way that I liked the rose tea, the subtle floral tones on top of the classic tea flavour are lovely. This is another one that is very well-balanced. I’ve photographed it here black, but having tried it a few more times, I think I prefer it with a little splash of milk. I’ve definitely developed a taste for teas with floral hints and will be looking for more.

Also in my box, was a selection of biscuits. These were all absolutely delicious, but my favourite would have to be the Earl Grey infused shortbread. These were so tasty that I will definitely be getting some more as a little treat for myself. They also come in a really pretty tin, which is definitely a bonus to me.

I really like the idea of tea infused biscuits, these really would make such a lovely gift. Not only do they come in individual tins, they also have gift sets. I’d love to try some of the other flavours.

Next up I tried Marrakech Mint. I absolutely adore mint tea and have tried so many different flavours and varieties over the years. This particular tea is a blend of Whittard’s gunpowder green and peppermint leaves with a light sprinkling of cornflower petals.

This is a really refreshing and very light tea. They recommend trying it with honey or sugar. I don’t usually sweeten my drinks, so I really enjoy this as it comes, but I’ll definitely give the honey a go.

One of my favourite things about this tea, is how the little compact tea leaves unfold in the hot water and reveal beautiful complete leaves. This is definitely one to brew in a glass teapot of tea maker so you can watch the magic happening.

Here’s the tea leaves after brewing. Gunpowder tea is fired and rolled and was one of the first teas the chin ease traded with the arabs.

Get the look: Initial mug £5.95 New Look – Cat Teapot £8 George – Butter Dish – Laura Ashley

What teas have you been enjoying recently? Any recommendations?

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At the moment I’m feeling a bit fed up of London. Its been a hard few weeks for the city I grew up in and I spend a lot of time thinking about our future here. But then I remember all the things I love about living here. The diversity, the museums, the heritage and culture and of course the food. Trying new places to eat and exploring the city through food, will never be something I get bored of. I absolutely love finding new places to enjoy a meal with a friend, there really is nothing better for the soul than good food and good conversation.

I have digressed a little from the point of this post! I recently visited the fabulous Wild Food Cafe, I loved this place so much I just had to write a little review and talk about what I thought.This wonderful little spot,  is tucked away in the vibrant Neal’s Yard in Covent Garden.  This wonderful little spot is an oasis in the busy city, a lovely little retreat from a busy day. If you need a little colour in your life head to Neal’s Yard.

I absolutely love healthy food, I’ve always loved my fruit and veg and fresh beautifully cooked meals. I also love my treats, and I do like to indulge in delicious things. The cafe has a fab menu of plant based foods, as you’ve never seen them before. Healthy, colourful, vibrant food at it’s best. I visited the cafe a few weeks ago with Fay.

As soon as we arrived, we were seated on  a long table, by a window looking out on Neal’s Yard. We had loads of questions about the food and the waitress was absolutely fantastic, she talked us through the menu, made recommendations and explained ingredients to us. By the time we ordered we were really happy with our choices and it was just really nice having a chat with someone who was passionate about the food.

The menu has loads of great choices and almost all the ingredients are things I really enjoy. The menus are seasonal and we chose from the Spring menu. They’ve now moved on to an exciting new summer menu and I’d love to go back every season and see whats new.

For my main I opted for the Quan Yin Bowl, a beautifully presented combination of wild and black rice, asparagus, sweet potato, avocado, sprouting broccoli and pili nuts, served with kohlrabi slaw and grain mustard. All good stuff! The presentation was stunning and this tasted every bit as beautiful as it looked. It was very filling and utterly delicious.

The dessert was every bit as lovely as the main. I opted for the White Chocolate and Goji Berry Tart and Fay chose the Matcha Cheesecake. Both desserts were beautiful and considering all the lovely healthy ingredients they tasted every bit as lovely as their more surgery counterparts elsewhere.

I was impressed with everything about the Wild Food Cafe. The location is lovely and the perfect fit for relaxed atmosphere. The food is beautiful and the staff are lovely. If you find yourself in the area looking fro a good meal, then I couldn’t recommend it enough. The meal along with a freshly made juice cost just over £20, which was very reasonable for the quality of the food.

Find the cafe at – 1st Floor, 14 Neal’s Yard, Covent Garden WC2H 9DP

Find out more on The Wild Food Cafe website.