Things I have been cooking lately #72: Pat’s amazing salad

My dad has been with his partner, Pat, for about sixteen years and although they’ve never gotten married, I think of her as my step-mum and very much part of our family. Whenever we stay with my dad and Pat we always have amazing food and she makes the most delicious salads so following our recent trip to see them I decided to replicate this one at home with a couple of tweaks. Thanks for the great inspiration,  Pat!

Pat’s amazing salad
100g fresh crunchy salad leaves
200g baby plum tomatoes
200g smoked salmon
1/2 a medium avocado
50g feta cheese
100g mushrooms
3 spring onions
3 – 5 large, ripe strawberries
A handful of pumpkin seeds or salad sprinkle (optional)

If you are using the pumpkin seeds place them in a large frying pan in a single layer over a medium heat, shaking occasionally until they pop. Set aside.

Place the salad leaves in a large, attractive salad bowl.

Slice the mushrooms, spring onions, strawberries and avocado and add to the bowl.

Halve the tomatoes, cut the feta cheese into cubes and add both to the bowl.

Tear or cut the salmon into 2cm pieces and add to the bowl.

Toss well and then sprinkle over the pumpkin seeds or salad sprinkle.

Serve with a selection of salad dressings for people to choose from.

Serves 4 as a starter or 2 as a main

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Outfit of the week #45: Gorgeous greys

I picked up the skirt I am wearing today for a song at the end of the ASOS sale. I suppose it’s a winter garment being of quite heavy fabric but with London not quite committed to spring yet I’m glad I’ve gotten an opportunity to wear it this season. I really like the fact that it’s black and grey. It softens the pattern and stops it from looking “harsh”.

In this outfit I am wearing a black and grey striped stretch slash neck 3/4 sleeve t-shirt from Primark with a black and grey hounds tooth patterned midi circle skirt from ASOS,  black tights also Primark, a red cardigan from Topman, tan brogues from Dune and a fox cameo I bought in a craft market in Budapest.

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A Trip to the Tate Britain

This Easter weekend Mr Osbiston’s family came to stay with us, which is always loads of fun. We were expecting really good weather on Sunday and so we planned to visit Kew Garden to see all the lovely spring flowers… but then it poured and we had to quickly come up with a new plan. That’s where a trip to The Tate Britain, which houses 500 years of British art came in.

I really enjoy art but I find it hard to take anything seriously, which is how I ended up photographing in inappropriately captioning several pieces of art… enjoy…

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I will call it "booby fish"

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Sorry darlings, I appear to have forgotten my trousers

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The invitation SAID fancy dress!

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Get a load of those melons!

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Get out of that tree, you bellend!

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Matt Lucas presents his cock

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Now I'M the queen, bitches!

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Live on a farm, they said. It'll be fun they said.

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Man finally gets control of his... err... snake

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Outside the Clapham Grand on bsnk holiday Monday

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I don't know what happened. One minute I was walking down the road and the next thing my cock was out

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Stop splashing me, bitch!

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Darling... are you bored with the cat? Because I'm TERRIBLY bored with the cat

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Shoes, you're doing it wrong?

My top 10 movie rock stars

If there’s anything I love as much as movies, it’s rock music and the crazy folk who make it (hey, I married one). So I have picked out my top ten rockers from the movies. I am totally aware that not everyone who appears on this list is a “star” per say but they all embody some of the qualities that it takes to be a devotee to the gods of rock. For the purpose of this list I have included fictional musicians only.

Scott PilgrimScott Pilgrim
Played by: Michael Cera
Film: Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010)
Band: Sex B0b-Omb
Instrument of choice: Bass
Most rock ‘n roll behaviour: Playing self-indulgent, miserable songs
“Scott Pilgrim: We are Sex Bob-Omb and we are here to make you think about death and get sad and stuff.

Russell HammondRussell Hammond
Played by: Billy Crudup
Film: Almost Famous (2000)
Band: Stillwater
Instrument of choice: Guitar
Most rock ‘n roll behaviour: Relentless groupie shagging
“Russell Hammond: I am a golden god!

Robert FishmanRobert “Fish” Fishman
Played by: Rainn Wilson
Film: The Rocker (2008)
Band: A.D.D.
Instrument of choice: Drums
Most rock ‘n roll behaviour: Refusing to grow up
“Curtis: I thought you were supposed to be the responsible adult.
Robert ‘Fish’ Fishman: Oh I’m responsible alright. Responsible for partying till my nuts catch fire!

RexRex
Played by: Steve Buscemi
Film: Airheads (1994)
Band: The Lone Rangers
Instrument of choice: Bass
Most rock ‘n roll behaviour: Humping his guitar on stage
“Chazz: Who’d win in a wrestling match, Lemmy or God?
Chris Moore: Lemmy.
[Rex imitates a game show buzzer]
Chris Moore: … God?
Rex: Wrong, dickhead, trick question. Lemmy *IS* God.

Nigel TufnelNigel Tufnel
Played by: Christopher Guest
Film: This is Spinal Tap (1994)
Band: Spinal Tap
Instrument of choice: Guitar
Most rock ‘n roll behaviour: Owning an amp that turns up to 11
“Nigel Tufnel: The numbers all go to eleven. Look, right across the board, eleven, eleven, eleven and…
Marty DiBergi: Oh, I see. And most amps go up to ten?
Nigel Tufnel: Exactly.
Marty DiBergi: Does that mean it’s louder? Is it any louder?
Nigel Tufnel: Well, it’s one louder, isn’t it? It’s not ten. You see, most blokes, you know, will be playing at ten. You’re on ten here, all the way up, all the way up, all the way up, you’re on ten on your guitar. Where can you go from there? Where?
Marty DiBergi: I don’t know.
Nigel Tufnel: Nowhere. Exactly. What we do is, if we need that extra push over the cliff, you know what we do?
Marty DiBergi: Put it up to eleven.
Nigel Tufnel: Eleven. Exactly. One louder.
Marty DiBergi: Why don’t you just make ten louder and make ten be the top number and make that a little louder?
Nigel Tufnel: [pause] These go to eleven.

DonnyDonny
Played by: Matt Damon
Film: EuroTrip (2004)
Band: Lustra
Instrument of choice: Voice
Most rock ‘n roll behaviour: Performing a graphic song about the girl he is secretly shagging… in front of her boyfriend
“Donny: [singing] Scotty doesn’t know that Fiona and me do it in my van every Sunday. She tells him she’s in church, but she doesn’t go, still she’s on her knees and Scotty doesn’t know…

Dewey FinnDewey Finn
Played by: Jack Black
Film: School of Rock (2003)
Band: School of Rock
Instrument of choice: Guitar
Most rock ‘n roll behaviour: Making absolutely everything about him
“Dewey Finn: God of Rock, thank you for this chance to kick ass. We are your humble servants. Please give us the power to blow people’s minds with our high voltage rock. In your name we pray, Amen.

Curt WildCurt Wild
Played by: Ewan McGregor
Film: Velvet Goldmine (1998)
Band: The Rats
Instrument of choice: Voice
Most rock ‘n roll behaviour: Exposing himself on stage
“Curt Wild: Listen, a real artist creates beautiful things and puts nothing of his own life into them, OK?”

cassandraCassandra
Played by: Tia Carrere
Films: Wayne’s World (1992) and Wayne’s World 2 (1993)
Band: Crucial Taunt
Instrument of choice: Bass and voice
Most rock ‘n roll behaviour: Wearing lingerie on stage
“Cassandra: Yeah, and if a frog had wings it wouldn’t bump its ass when it hopped.
Wayne Campbell: Interesting. Where did you learn English?
Cassandra: College… and the Police Academy movies.”

Aldous SnowAldous Snow
Played by: Russell Brand
Films: Forgetting Sarah Marshall (2008) and Get Him to the Greek (2010)
Band: Solo artist
Instrument of choice: Voice
Most rock ‘n roll behaviour: Convincing a journalist to smuggle his drugs through an airport… in his bottom
“Aldous Snow: This is it, Aaron. This is rock n’ roll. Did you enjoy the party?

April Fools 2014: Where the Wild Things Are

Abbi:

Check out my latest guest blog over at Silver Screen Serenade where I talk about my top 5 lovable idiots with the fabulous Cara.

Originally posted on Silver Screen Serenade:

where the wild things are

How about a brand-spankin’ new list of lovable idiots for your Saturday enjoyment? The lovely Abbi from Where the Wild Things Are is here to share just such a list with us! Abbi has a wonderful blog that dabbles in all kinds of things–movie reviews, throwback pictures, recipes, fashion, top ten lists…it’s all great fun, so follow her! Anywho, here’s her list of April Fools!

View original 650 more words

Film Friday #176

Party Monster (2003)

Based on the semi-autobiographical novel of the same name, Party Monster tells the story of New York party scene casualty Michael Alig (Macauley Culkin) through the eyes of his best friend James St James (Seth Green). Naive but determined Michael arrives in New York from Indiana desperate to become a party promoter. He thrusts his unwanted friendship onto James, who is the toast of the town and slowly but surely his parties with their crazy themes become the place to be. Initially Michael avoids drugs but as he falls for gorgeous Keoki (Wilmer Valderama), he starts to indulge to fit in, developing a habit that overwhelms everything else in his life. Soon Michael finds it hard to keep hold of what is real in amongst the colourful chaos of traveling from one party to the next while trying to satiate his unstoppable hunger for the next fix, leading to an incident that will not only change the course of Michael’s life but also rock the whole scene. Party Monster is brash, trashy, bright and terribly shallow with a total focus on style over substance, which could come across as criticism but it from my perspective it seemed like a conscious decision to mirror Alig and St James’ lives. Apparently Culkin went mad while playing Alig and I can’t say I am terribly surprised. Overall Culkin’s performance is uneven, sometimes seemingly capturing the spirit of the scene and Alig’s flamboyance but other times coming off as over the top and amateurish. It is Green who often steals the show, completely disappearing into St James, playing against his normal goofy type. It’s not difficult to buy his genuine concern for Alig. This is a film that definitely won’t be for everyone. Some might find the characters annoying and the surrealness of their lives hard to identify with. I found it dark, disturbing and quite fascinating and apparently I’m not the only one, as it’s become something of a cult classic. 3/5

What do you mean this isn't regulation hospital uniform?

What do you mean this isn’t regulation hospital uniform?

The Graduate (1967)

Benjamin Braddock (Dustin Hoffman) returns home after graduating from college, listless and not sure what he wants to do with his life. Feeling alienated from his parents he falls into an affair with Mrs Robinson (Anne Bancroft), the much older wife of his father’s business partner. Mrs Robinson only has two rules for Benjamin, she doesn’t want to talk about their feelings and she doesn’t want him to go anywhere near her daughter, Elaine (Katharine Ross). Of course Benjamin can’t stick to either of these rules and after taking Elaine on a date, realises he’s fallen in love with her. Now he will have to break off his affair with Mrs Robinson without his new love realising that he’s been having it off with her mom or his parents or Mr Robinson finding out. Unfortunately, inexperienced Benjamin has not counted on the wrath of a woman scorned. I wanted to enjoy The Graduate but I had some issues with it. First of all I just couldn’t buy Hoffman as a romantic lead. He’s such a very tiny little man and so all his posturing and performing kind of made me want to giggle. I know that’s really shallow of me but I just couldn’t take him seriously. I also found the bit where he basically turned up at Elaine’s college and stalked her to be really weird. All of that said, the soundtrack is awesome and Bancroft is fabulous as a woman desperate not to disappear as she gets older. I guess it’s one of those classics where I just don’t really get the hype. 2.5/5

Is there something on my head?

Is there something on my head?

This is the End (2013)

This is the End is a pretty unique comedy… since every one of the characters is playing themselves. Neurotic Jay Baruchel travels to LA to visit his friend, Seth Rogen to basically hang out and smoke a whole bunch of weed. But Seth has made a new Hollywood friends who he wants Jay to get to know better so he drags him to a party at James Franco’s house. Jay is none too pleased since he thinks Seth’s new friends are a bunch of pretentious dicks… but when an apocalyptic event occurs during the party the group, including Jonah Hill and Craig Robinson are trapped in Franco’s house fighting to survive. Will they work together or will their egos end up being more dangerous that whatever the hell it is that killed Michael Cera? All the actors involved are having a great time playing parodies of themselves, particularly Franco who embraces the idea that he is a self absorbed, hipster douche bag and absolutely throws himself into it. The arrival of Danny McBride half way through adds a whole other dimension of hilarious insanity, even if you kind of already hate the guy, and Jonah Hill’s weird obsession with Jay is brilliantly creepy. Although the best part is probably Channing Tatum’s five minutes of screen time. All in all, this is just 107 minutes of craziness mixed with a bit of horror that is bound to make you laugh. 3.5/5

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Danny McBride’s back hair was more than anyone could take

Speed (1994)

After terrorist Howard Payne’s (Dennis Hopper) plan to blow up an elevator goes wrong the two cops that managed to stop him are hailed as heroes and he is presumed dead. Months later one of these original officers, Jack Traven (Keanu Reeves), discovers that a bomb has been placed on a bus and immediately suspects Payne, who has two stipulations – the bus cannot travel below 50 mph and no one can get off. Traven makes his way onto the bus but not before the driver is shot, leaving unlicensed driver, Annie (Sandra Bullock) behind the wheel. Now he must manage traffic jams, unfinished highways and petrified passengers, all while trying to diffuse the bomb and keep Payne at bay. Speed is not without problems – the premise is kind of ridiculous, the script is a bit crap and Keanu, is as plankish as always… but it does have some classic lines (“Shoot the hostage!”), there is a fair bit of chemistry between Bullock and Reeves and, well, it’s pretty action-packed and exciting. It was one of my absolute favourites when it came out and I was thirteen and although it isn’t quite as exciting twenty years later (Jesus Christ, is that how old I am?), it’s still really watchable as long as you can suspend your disbelief. As 90′s action movies go, it doesn’t get much better than this! 3.5/5

What do you mean am I going for pine or mahogany?

What do you mean am I going for pine or mahogany?

Throwback Thursday #25: where’s me trousers?

Apparently it was International Sibling Day last week but somehow I missed it. Anyway, here’s a picture of me and my brother, Pete playing in our garden in Edenvale in 1985. I am about 4 and he must be around 1. I’m not sure why he has a doll’s trousers on his head but I am clearly puzzled. Also I appear to have lost my bottoms?

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