29 November 2016

In The Kitchen: Hot Spiced Gin Cocktails

Hot Spiced Gin Cocktails recipe, Rock Rose Gin, Dalry Rose blog, UK lifestyle blog, Hampshire bloggers, food blog, festive cocktails, hot cocktails

Rock Rose Gin is a Scottish gin made from local botanicals which makes it really tasty and authentic - and they have brought out seasonal editions, each with hints of ingredients which remind us about the season they're themed after. Their Autumn Edition*  has a lower lever of citrus, and more berry and spice flavours. Along with the local botanicals which include juniper berries, rowan berries, sea buckthorn, and rhodiola rosea, this blend also has blackberries and raspberries from Caithness Summer Fruits and blaeberries from the Dunnet area.

My usual tipple is wine, and I rarely stray from my favourite glass of Sauvignon in the summer and
Shiraz Cabernet Malbec during the Winter, but I do love a nice G&T. Inspired by the spiced Autumnal flavours, I created a yummy Winter hot gin cocktail to enjoy during the festive season - it's super quick and easy to make!
Hot Spiced Gin Cocktails recipe, Rock Rose Gin, Dalry Rose blog, UK lifestyle blog, Hampshire bloggers, food blog, festive cocktails, hot cocktails
Hot Spiced Gin Cocktails recipe, Rock Rose Gin, Dalry Rose blog, UK lifestyle blog, Hampshire bloggers, food blog, festive cocktails, hot cocktails

Ingredients (makes 2 cups):
- 100ml Rock Rose Gin
- 2 tbsp honey
- 4 cloves
- 1 x cinnamon stick
- 1 x lemon
- 300ml hot water

I found that using a thermos was the easiest way to mix this cocktail as it keeps it warm and is easy to shake up: throw in the spices, honey and gin then top up with hot water. Put in some lemon zest for a really zingy flavour to stew, as well as the juice of half a lemon.
Leave to stew in the thermos for 10 minutes, then strain and serve in heat resistant glasses - or mugs! I strain the cocktail because the spices can sometimes chip off and a mouthful of clove is a little too much to handle! Decorate with a cinnamon stick and enjoy responsibly, with a festive biscuit.

Hot Spiced Gin Cocktails recipe, Rock Rose Gin, Dalry Rose blog, UK lifestyle blog, Hampshire bloggers, food blog, festive cocktails, hot cocktails
Hot Spiced Gin Cocktails recipe, Rock Rose Gin, Dalry Rose blog, UK lifestyle blog, Hampshire bloggers, food blog, festive cocktails, hot cocktails

I really enjoyed this spiced Winter gin cocktail - it's festive, sweet and zesty at the same time. Although, I have to say that I did get a little bit giggly after just one cup! Perfect for an Autumn/Winter picnic - don't be put off by the cold weather, you can enjoy a delicious and cosy picnic any time of the year! Read my post on how to set up a Winter alfresco lunch, or how to enjoy a Winter picnic in the woods!

To find out more about Rock Rose Gin and to purchase a seasonal bottle, visit Dunnet Bay Distillers.
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26 November 2016

ARK Skin Hydration Injection Masque Review

ARK Skincare Hydration Injection Masque review, Dalry Rose Blog, beauty bloggers, UK beauty blog

Winter rolls in, central heating goes on, skin goes to poop. Cold weather creates the perfect conditions for dry skin problems such as tightness, sore spots, sensitivity - we have to keep skin hydrated and nourished throughout Winter to ensure our face doesn't only look beautiful, but feel comfortable too.
I have been trialling a hydrating masque by ARK Skincare, who's range comprises of three key age products: teens & 20s protects skin; 30s and 40s defends skin; and 50s + defies ageing. ARK is an award-winning skincare range which is made in Britain, contains natural ingredients and is never tested on animals.

ARK Skincare Hydration Injection Masque review, Dalry Rose Blog, beauty bloggers, UK beauty blog
ARK Skincare Hydration Injection Masque review, Dalry Rose Blog, beauty bloggers, UK beauty blog
ARK Skincare Hydration Injection Masque review, Dalry Rose Blog, beauty bloggers, UK beauty blog
ARK Skincare Hydration Injection Masque review, Dalry Rose Blog, beauty bloggers, UK beauty blog

ARK Skin Perfector Masque is suitable for any age - the difference is how long you keep the masque on your face. The multivitamin hydration injection masque quenches dehydrated skin, plumps wrinkles and restores vibrancy to dull and tires skin. When your skin looks tired, stressed and dry you can turn to Skin Perfector to restore balance and a healthy glow - it's a luxurious weekly treat!

The active ingredients contain a blend of multivitamins: Vitamin A which regulates collages; Vitamin B5 to help skin stay smooth; Vitamin C to fade pigmentation; and Vitamin E to prevent harmful UV damage.
Another miracle ingredient in this masque is Hyaluronic Acid which makes your skin feel super smooth by boosting moisture - it optimises the circulation of water through your skins layers and provides 24hr protection against water loss. Hyaluronic Acid is also a good ingredient to have in products if you're suffering from acne as the moisture helps skin tackle spots.
And finally, sugar beet and Abyssinian oil nourishes the skin and helps it feel soft, youthful, healthy and glowing.

I use this masque once or twice a week if I need a pick me up - my skin feels incredibly soft and smooth. Even when I have a spot outbreak, which often happens when central heating comes on as my skin gets dry, I use the masque and my skin feels clean and clear after use.
If you're in your 20s: leave the masque on for 5 minutes; in your 30 and 40s: leave it on for 10 minutes; and 50s + leave it one for 15 minutes for a truly pampering feel.

It's not often I find a product that I really love - but this is staying as a gold item in my bathroom cabinet!
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25 November 2016

Forest Creatures

How to wear a fur coat, fashion bloggers, UK fashion blog, Winter outfit inspiration, Dalry Rose Blog

With the temperatures rapidly decreasing, no longer are mid season coats doing the job of keeping our bodies warm and stylish. It's time to bring out the big guns - i.e. the fluffy Winter coats. I've dug out an old favourite of mine - furry leopard print number from Topshop which I bought years ago in the sale. Funnily enough, I haven't worn this coat for ages because I didn't like how big and fluffy it looked - but now I feel I've grown into its grandeur.
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24 November 2016

The Jojoba Company 100% Natural Jojoba and Rosehip Oil Review

The Jojoba Company Oil Review, jojoba oil review, beauty bloggers, UK beauty blog

Jojoba - in case you, like me, have wondered how to pronounce this word it's HOHOBA. So now we've got that out of the way, let's talk about the use of jojoba in beauty - it has moisturising properties, help control skin oils, help with spots, comforts chapped lips and heals cracked skin. Who knew that jojoba oil is going to be the next big thing in skincare oils?
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23 November 2016

Restaurant Review & Giveaway: Turtle Bay, Southampton

Turtle Bay Southampton review, food bloggers, UK food bloggers, Hampshire bloggers, places to eat Southampton
Turtle Bay Southampton review, food bloggers, UK food bloggers, Hampshire bloggers, places to eat Southampton
Turtle Bay Southampton review, food bloggers, UK food bloggers, Hampshire bloggers, places to eat Southampton, Caribbean food

I have always wanted to know more about Caribbean food - it has all the elements of what I like in meals: spice, flavour, colour, meat, fish and an array of delicious carbs. But funnily enough I haven't actually had a chance to experience much of Caribbean flavours other than when Liam cooks it at home! So when I was invited to review Turtle Bay in Southampton, I was really excited to get a taste of the Caribbean flavours and see what cocktails were on offer.
The atmosphere in Turtle Bay (even on a Monday night which is when we went) was buzzing - the venue was full, with music that just invited you to dance! From the beginning, staff were very welcoming and friendly - even though we arrived 30 minutes early because we somehow managed to beat all the traffic coming into Southampton!

Turtle Bay Southampton review, food bloggers, UK food bloggers, Hampshire bloggers, places to eat Southampton, Caribbean food
Turtle Bay Southampton review, food bloggers, UK food bloggers, Hampshire bloggers, places to eat Southampton, Caribbean food

We immediately dug into the mocktails - as a designated driver, I was on my best behaviour - so we thought we'll indulge in sugar over alcohol this evening. We started off with a Watermelon Crush which tasted just like holiday feels; and Coconut & Pineapple Punch which is like a pudding version of a Pina Colada; then indulged in Passionfruit Cooler and I had the mother of all non alcoholic cocktails - Peanut Butter & Banana Smoothie. Now this was pudding in a glass - it tasted like peanuts, with sweet condensed milk and banana. YUM. This gets major YUM points.

Turtle Bay Southampton review, food bloggers, UK food bloggers, Hampshire bloggers, places to eat Southampton, Caribbean food
Turtle Bay Southampton review, food bloggers, UK food bloggers, Hampshire bloggers, places to eat Southampton, Caribbean food
Turtle Bay Southampton review, food bloggers, UK food bloggers, Hampshire bloggers, places to eat Southampton, Caribbean food
Turtle Bay Southampton review, food bloggers, UK food bloggers, Hampshire bloggers, places to eat Southampton, Caribbean food

For starters we shared Chilli Squid with mango mole, fresh lime and coriander mayo; and Hot Hot Pepper Roti which is a trini-style oven baked roti stuffed with shredded cheese, carrots, potatoes and onion - served with scotch bonnet and herb mayo which adds an extra spice to the dish. 
The chilli squid was thin, crispy and soft to chew - delicious served with a zingy mayo and perfect as a starter. I had no idea what to expect when the roti came out but it was delicious - and as a person who doesn't really like (and by that I mean I hardly ever eat it) cooked carrot, this starter was delicious. The scotch bonnet mayo gave it a really nice and flavoursome kick that I was expecting - but if you like it hot then add some of Aunt May's Bajan Pepper Sauce - it's hot and tangy! And when the spice hits, make sure to have your milk or cream based cocktail near you.

Turtle Bay Southampton review, food bloggers, UK food bloggers, Hampshire bloggers, places to eat Southampton, Caribbean food
Turtle Bay Southampton review, food bloggers, UK food bloggers, Hampshire bloggers, places to eat Southampton, Caribbean food
Turtle Bay Southampton review, food bloggers, UK food bloggers, Hampshire bloggers, places to eat Southampton, Caribbean food
Turtle Bay Southampton review, food bloggers, UK food bloggers, Hampshire bloggers, places to eat Southampton, Caribbean food

We then indulged in our main courses: a Goat Burger which is combined with lamb, grilled and seasoned in jerk spices, served on a sweet bun with fresh green seasoning, sweet onion chutney and sweet plantain - accompanied by spiced fries; and Curry, Shrimp and Mango with sweet potatoes, tomato, garlic, ginger, Caribbean spices, green seasoning, sweet onion chutney and roti. I love a good Caribbean curry but I was also really intrigued by the burger - because when you find that special bun and meat combo, you know you're on to a winner. The goat meat is quite tough which is something I didn't really think about when ordering the burger - so even though it was cooked really nicely (just under being well done), it was quite tough. The taste though was delicious - it's like herby lamb, with a stronger flavour. I really like goat meat, other than the burger I've only ever had it in stews and currys! The spiced fries were yummy - I had them with mayo and Aunt May's Bajan Pepper Sauce.

Now on to the prawn and mango curry with rice 'n' peas - wow. Well that was absolutely incredible for taste and texture - there was so much flavour in the dish from the prawns which were succulent and meaty; to the sweet taste of the mango coming through; all topped off with a slight kick of spice - mix this all with rice and kidney beans and you're on to a winner! I couldn't fault the dish - it was exactly what I expected from Caribbean cuisine. Squeeze out the lime juice served with the curry for a little zest, and add in some hot sauce to make it really spicy - now you're talking! If you're not sure what to go for on the menu I highly recommend the One Pot dishes because they are so flavoursome and saucy!

All in all, I was really happy with the quality of the food; the speed of when we got our meals and also the taste - I couldn't pick out faults in the taste or ingredients of the meals. Turtle Bay most definitely encouraged me to try more Caribbean foods - which means I will no doubt be back at Turtle Bay Southampton to indulge in more tasty and spicy food.

Turtle Bay Southampton review, food bloggers, UK food bloggers, Hampshire bloggers, places to eat Southampton, Caribbean food
Turtle Bay Southampton review, food bloggers, UK food bloggers, Hampshire bloggers, places to eat Southampton, Caribbean food
Turtle Bay Southampton review, food bloggers, UK food bloggers, Hampshire bloggers, places to eat Southampton, Caribbean food
Turtle Bay Southampton review, food bloggers, UK food bloggers, Hampshire bloggers, places to eat Southampton, Caribbean food

Before we rolled back to the car for the journey home, we shared dessert - a Spiced Chocolate Pot which is set chocolate cream served with coconut shavings and coconut ice cream; and a cheeky shot of the spiced Old Jamaican rum which smells like vanilla and caramel! Served the right way - neat, with ice and lime.
I loved the rum, and usually I'm not a huge fan of it but this spiced rum was so sweet and pleasant it was really easy to drink straight. I actually think that a mixer would ruin it!

The chocolate pudding was something else - our waitress told us that one of her customers actually describes this dessert as 'sexy': the chocolate, the smooth ice cream and a kick of spice... Yes, a kick of spice has made this dessert one of the best I have ever eaten. There is an element of scotch bonnet in the chocolate cream which leaves a pleasant kick in the back of your throat and grows with the more dessert you eat. It was incredible! I want the recipe so I can make this at home and indulge in this heavenly combo whenever I need a pick me up.

Turtle Bay in Southampton is a fun place to spend your evening - the atmosphere, food and drinks are top-notch, and I really loved that there is such a selection of non alcoholic cocktails so you can still join in the fun without having to wake up with the dreaded hangover!

Now I have a treat for my readers - I have actually teamed up with Turtle Bay in Southampton to bring you guys an exciting competition: win a three course meal for 2 at Turtle Bay Southampton! So you can taste the Caribbean flavours - and the most amazing chocolate dessert created! Enter my competition below!

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22 November 2016

Christmas At Home

Matalan Christmas Jumper, how to wear a Christmas jumper, fashion bloggers, fashion blog, lifestyle bloggers, lifestyle blog, Christmas blog

There are a lot of things that make Christmas special for me - the delicious home cooked food, seeing friends, mulled wine (at whatever time you want it!) and of course the most important of it all is spending time with family. But for me, family is not just about people - it's also the animals we share our homes with, and I for one see my animals as my babies who get all the love and attention I can give them. So in the run up to the most festive season of the year, I wanted to show you how we decorate our Christmas tree and who's involved in the process! 
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16 November 2016

Places To Eat In Cornwall

Godolphin Arms Marazion, places to eat in Marazion, food bloggers UK, travel bloggers

One of the best parts of going on a trip to a new place is eating local food - and there are plenty of gems hidden right on our doorstep in the UK. Cornwall offers incredible seafood which is what I was super excited about when planning the trip - but after doing some research on restaurants I decided that there is so much, we're just going to stumble into the eateries near us and sample the food. 
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15 November 2016

Double Knitwear Layers

Autumn fashion inspiration, Hampshire bloggers, fashion bloggers, UK fashion blog
Autumn fashion inspiration, Hampshire bloggers, fashion bloggers, UK fashion blog

Layering is the cosiest of styles - wrap yourself up like a soft, warm cabbage and embrace being toasty in when the cold November winds hit. And layering knitwear is the most comfortable of the all, because what can be better than effectively wrapping your body up in wool?! I found this gorgeous cardigan* from Rosegal and since I've been wearing this cardigan I've had plenty of comments asking me where it's from.
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14 November 2016

Facetox Aztec Clay Face Mask Review

Facetox Aztec Clay Mask Review, beauty bloggers, UK beauty blog, organic face masks

Anyone who has an Instagram, Facebook or Twitter account would have seen beauty bloggers and influencers post selfies with their cute little faces covered in mud - and their hashtags and brand tags would have pointed you to Facetox. Facetox is a brand who have created an all natural and organic mask made from Aztec clay and rose water. I was approached by Facetox to review the Aztec clay mask and I was really curious to see if it was 'worth the hype' - so here goes!
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13 November 2016

Paul Mitchell Marula Oil Intense Hair Masque Review

Paul Mitchell Marula Oil Hair Masque Review, beauty bloggers, UK beauty blog
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10 November 2016

In The Kitchen: Mussels in Cider Cream Sauce

Mussels in cider cream sauce recipe, food bloggers, UK food blog, Hampshire lifestyle blog, Dalry Rose blog

I love mussels - they are so light and full of flavour! If there are mussels on the menu in a restaurant, it is likely they will be ordered. But do you know how easy and quick it is to cook mussels at home? And did I mention - very inexpensive? I show you one of my favourite mussels recipes where they are cooked in a cider and cream sauce - yum!

Some people are scared of cooking seafood - but mussels are easy to suss. When you buy live mussels, you have to de-beard them (you know the little brown strings coming out of them? Basically pull those out) and discard any mussels that are open - this mens they're not the best to eat. Just remember - closed live mussels are good; opened live mussels are bad!
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9 November 2016

Cold Shoulder

Cold shoulder sweater fashion, fashion bloggers, UK fashion blog, personal style blog

As the cold sets in I finally give up and dig out my super cosy knitwear, faux fur and warm boots. This week I have been waking up in the morning to frost covering the grass and roofs of houses - and it gives me a really nice, cosy feeling - mainly because I have been able to cosy up at home more often that usual! But in all honesty I love this season because you can get really snug in layers of gorgeous fabric and prints - and layers are the way forward.
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8 November 2016

In The Kitchen: Mexican Feast with Gran Luchito

Mexican food recipes, Gran Luchito sauces, food bloggers, UK food blog, lifestyle bloggers, UK lifestyle blog

A couple of weeks ago, I posted a recipe for grilled avocado with prawns which was delicious and everyone who has tried it - loved it! It was only a part of a Mexican style food feast I created in collaboration with Gran Luchito Smoked Chilli sauces - there was so much more I did with a handful of fresh ingredients, some delicious sauces and recipes for inspiration on the Gran Luchito website.
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7 November 2016

Burts Bees Ginger Spice Limited Edition Lip Balm

Burts Bees Ginger Spice lip balm, Burts Bees lip balm, ginger lip balm, Dalry Rose blog, UK beauty blog, UK beauty bloggers
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