Festive feasts, Indian Street food and lots of cake


Working our way through Christmas meant working our way through most of the restaurants in the shire (as if roast dinners weren't enough). 

One of our catch ups took place at The Tavern, which I've wanted to revisit since they brought back their old school menu. I started with clams & samphire in cider followed by Chicken, lemon, aioli and mash potato with marrow butter (sounds pretentious but definitely worth changing your potato side to this mashy goodness). The man had a burger which he wasn't that fussed with - I think Cheltenham has become the hub of good burgers and so they had a lot to compete with (more on this later...). We finished with a 'Sticky Toffee sandwich' because I'd seen it on Instagram far too much to resist (laters wedding diet).

New Years Eve was spent bar/house hopping - with an 'Indian Street Food' dinner wedged in between. Delhi Heights is fast becoming our favourite takeaway - with amazing Bhaji scotch eggs and build 'em up Naan breads with meat/sauce/toppings.

Feeling fat yet? If you can handle another mouthful then I definitely recommend a visit to Holee Cow for the aforementioned burger. V.juicy but the sides stole the show. Mac & Cheese bites, sticky chicken wings and chunky choc milkshakes. This was just what I needed to recover from a gin-filled festive catchup, and a much better prospect than the queue/cost/lack of tables at Five Guys.

Top this off with cake in every flavour you can think of and you've got yourself one Santa belly. We took a trip to Stow to pick up our wedding rings and had a cake break at The Hive - where we had Rose & pistachio cake and Chocolate & avocado (wtf). 

Now January is here I shall be shutting my gob/wallet and shaping up for the big day...

Cheltenham bake-off cakes & floral finds


Living walking distance from local goodies makes treating myself at weekends all the more tempting. I've also discovered that my local Flower Man (actually called 'The Flower Man') sells country-inspired beauties like hydrangeas and delphiniums - miles away from your standard squished petrol station carnation. One (or two) of these at the weekend make the house look good for well over a week, and inspires me to keep the place tidy (ish).

In the spirit of keeping tidy - we decided the time had come to get rid of our mis-matched plates, when we moved in together a couple of years ago we amalgamated a bit of a weird collection. After some research and debating ('no I don't want plates with dachshunds on', 'how much?!') we settled on some black and white ones from made.com - this site is pretty reasonable for good quality decor when you compare with the high street.

Another local treat includes some chocolate swiss rolls (that were actually inspired by a technical challenge on bake-off) and blonde brownie from my old haunt, Brew & Bake. Getting my full gran on, I also went to the charity bookshop for a Cath Kidston covered edition of 'The Provincial Lady'.

So so old, and florally bold.

Sweets, treats and Cheltenham dine time

It is time for another food update. Quite a contrast to my previous post about being 'motivated' and doing some exercise with the #thisgirlcan campaign. Unfortunately, like the 29-going-on-80 year old I am, my back problems have put a hold on this. So instead...I shall eat!

Since living in Cheltenham I have found some favourite lunchtime spots, perfect dinner date locations and places to treat myself when the sweet tooth kicks in.

Bills in Cheltenham is great for some pre-shopping lunch. It's varied menu combines great breakfasts (things on toast) with quirky sides and starters (mac and cheese, fried halloumi, duck salad...). Preferring usually to opt for the latter I like to combine a few of their smaller dishes to make the ultimate dish. The mac and cheese in particular is delicious, and easier to forgive yourself for when you combine with a starter-sized avocado and bacon salad.

For dinner I re-visted an old favourite, Hot Pepper Jelly. The restaurant itself is beautifully decorated with fairy lights, shabby chic furniture and Paris-inspired art. The dinner menu isn't huge but has some deliciously drool-inducing options (also French-inspired). I opted for the Pork Belly for main (that also came with a pork spare rib, bacon cabbage and mash with a side of apple sauce) and White Chocolate cheesecake for dessert. Both delicious options that had me (and my companions) making noises not dissimilar to Meg Ryan. 

For other sweet treats, Wholefoods is a good spot. Cheap it is not, but beautifully packaged, independant products make up for this. It is a treat after all. I rounded off my weekend with chocolate mint brownie tablet, rose lemonade and Doisy + Dam chocolate.

This also seems like a good opportunity to share with you a cafe I discovered in Dublin, purely for its stand out branding. Kitsch pink and gingham print...right up my street.