Wednesday 30 July 2014

Penne al Pomodoro

Penne al Pomodoro

We all have days where we have no idea what to make for dinner. Usually for me, that is when the temptation of Dominos pizza, McDonalds, Chinese take-away or  fish and chips becomes too powerful to resist and I have some kind of terribly unhealthy meal, which tastes amazing at the time but fills me with remorse afterwards!
 I am trying to break this cycle, and one thing I find consistently comforting, quick, easy, cheap and healthy (ish) to make is pasta. Last night, I started to prepare some Penne pasta on the hob and then I realised I did not have a jar of pre-made pasta sauce in the cupboard, so I improvised one and it ended up tasting delicious, so I thought  I would share.


 (Serves 2)

Enough dried Penne pasta to serve two people
A glug of olive oil
Half an onion, peeled and diced
One tin of chopped tomatoes
Two tablespoons of tomato purée
One tablespoon of Italian dried mixed herbs (combo of Basil and Oregano would be fine)
Generous sprinkle of mild chilli powder (less to taste depending how spicy you like your food)
Half a packet of Quorn mince
Salt and Pepper

To serve:
Chopped cherry tomatoes (optional)
Half a mozzarella ball, chopped
Grated cheddar (parmesan would be ideal too)
Garlic bread or ciabatta (optional)


Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Carefully add the dry pasta to the hot water and reduce the heat to a simmer. Monitor the pasta and set it aside when it is ‘al dente’ (slightly hard still) or softer depending how you like it. Ten minutes is a rough guide to cooking time for the pasta. 

Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat, then fry the diced onion until soft. Add the tinned chopped tomatoes, purée, chilli powder, herbs and Quorn mince to the pan and stir gently (if using frozen mince it will take a few minutes to thaw, so encourage it with a gentle stir here and there) make sure the heat is not too high as the sauce will splatter everywhere! Stir frequently until the sauce is bubbling away nicely and heated all the way through. Taste it regularly and season it to taste with salt and pepper or even an extra dash of chilli powder or another sprinkle of herbs. I added an extra glug (about a tablespoon) of olive oil to the sauce towards the end of cooking and I found that it really enhanced the flavour. Drain the Penne and add it to the pan of sauce. Stir thoroughly and allow to heat through together for another minute or two.
Serve with grated cheese and chopped mozzarella on one side. Top with cherry tomatoes if desired. A few fresh basil leaves would also look lovely shredded over the top of each serving.

A note on wine:
I served this with a Tempranillo red wine, a really full bodied wine from Spain which complimented the rich flavours of the pasta perfectly.

So there we have it, simple, classic and delicious food that speaks straight to the heart. I have to admit, this meal makes me so happy. I am not a chef in any way, but  do love to make hearty, flavoursome food which can be enjoyed with a side order of good company!

Best wishes until next time!
Camille xo

Tuesday 29 July 2014

Something about the way you say my name...

Hi everyone, I hope that you have all been having a good week so far. My weekend consisted of dinner at a local pub on Friday night, plenty of relaxing and walks by the water. The weekend was rounded off by meeting up with my guy friends on Sunday evening for drinks which was really good fun. 
As usual, food featured a lot in my weekend, so I apologise  in advance for making you all hungry with food pictures again ;) Sorry for the poor quality mirror pictures, but I just bought this long floral kimono in Primark for £13. I absolutely love it and I think it will look nice with skinny jeans for a night out or with shorts during the day.

Did I really need another kimono you guys? Well...probably not, but I talked myself into it!

These black super high-waist skinny jeans from Primark are the best fitting jeans I have ever found!

 A recent ootd. Shock horror, I was not wearing black for once! 
Maxi dress-River Island
Rosary necklace- Forever 21
Bag-Forever 21
Shades and flip-flops- Primark 

 Breakfast in my garden. 
 The beer garden at the pub I went to on Friday night.
The extensive menu.
 The cutlery and sauces came in a cute wicker basket :)
 A chilled Sauvignon Blanc and some Ciabatta served with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
 Hunters chicken with chips (top of picture) and Caesar salad with a side of sweet potato fries (bottom of picture).
Toffee popcorn ice cream sundae! I did not try this but it looked amazing.

Lazy make up of the evening, my usual bronzer, mascara and pale pink lips.

The pub we went to was a Greene King pub and I would thoroughly recommend a visit to one if you have one nearby, as the food was delicious and the prices were good. It was a perfect way to spend a relaxed Friday evening.

Cute bicycles outside the pub.

How cute were these mugs I saw in John Lewis today?! I wanted all of them apart from the 'cuts of meat' one, which was a bit too macabre for me. I particularly liked the world map one and the 'nice cup of tea' logo one!
 Sail away!

Vanishing point!

So that is all for now, but do tell me how you are and what you have been up to lately. I love hearing from you all. Don't forget, I read all of your lovely comments and I follow back my followers. 
My blog reached 700 followers on Bloglovin yesterday, so a huge thank you from me to all of you for taking the time to read it! Sending you all a massive hug :)

Saturday 26 July 2014

What you mean to me...

Hi everyone, I hope that you are all well. It was my birthday on Wednesday the 23rd and I was lucky enough to receive a Canon DSLR camera as one of my gifts, so you can expect better photographs here in the future!
It was a lovely day, we went to Anglesey again for the day and had a barbecue on the beach. Luckily it was a sunny day so I was able to swim in the sea for hours, which makes me so happy! The delicious cheeseburgers and a bottle of bubbly made the afternoon even more special, and then there was a beautiful sunset to round of the day before going home.
 I am so grateful to have had such a good day. I got some more of my favourite perfume too, Alien by Thierry Mugler. I also received the matching body cream and shower gel, so I look forward to trying those. I love Alien so much, it is such a seductive and mysterious perfume and I always get compliments when I wear it, or people asking me what perfume I have on. I am now 33 years old, so I need a nice grown-up fragrance and Alien ticks all the boxes. I have worn it for about five years now and I never get bored of it :)
I hope you have a good weekend, what have you all been up to? Remember I read and appreciate all  of your lovely comments and I follow back my followers!
Until next time.

Camille xo

 Ruffle detail jumpsuit-Primark.
Bag-Marc B at Topshop.

 Birthday goodies, the candles were a joke! I wish I was 21 but I am 33!
 A birthday bouquet.
Cards and presents :)
 Llanddwyn Beach.
 Bubbly and burgers!
The amazing sunset :)

Below are the first pictures I took with my DSLR at the West Kirby Marine Lake. I hope you all like them :)

Thursday 24 July 2014

Fast cars and shooting stars...

Hi everyone, I hope that you have all been having a lovely week so far. This is a little update from me on what I have been up to. Yesterday was my birthday, but that will be part of my next post, this one is a round up of last weekend. I went for a girls night out with my dear friend last Friday. It was lovely to have a night out with her, and she popped round to my house first so that we could have pizza, wine and gossip before we went out! 
We headed to our favourite bar and it was very busy due to the Golf Open being held nearby.
We had a quick glass of wine and then we headed to their other venue across the road, The Wro Lounge. There was a Real Ale festival taking place in the courtyard, so we sampled a couple of the drinks on offer, including Marie Jaune, a lovely blonde beer, and Rosies Cider which was a delicious and refreshing drink. It was a lovely way to spend such a warm evening and we rounded off our night with one more glass of wine back in the bar! The rest of the weekend was relaxing, I did a little shopping on Saturday and then on Sunday I went for a walk and then visited the Real Ale festival again and this time I tried one of the burgers from the barbecue they had set up. I opted for a Cajun chicken burger and it was delicious!
It was such good fun and I enjoyed Friday night and Sunday very much :)

Recent outfit of the evening. 
Skirt- H&M
Faux leather jacket-Primark
Sandals-New Look
Bag-Marc B at Topshop

Pizza and wine before we went out :)
The outfit I wore out on Friday night, dress and clutch bag from Primark, shoes from River Island. Sorry for the poor-quality mirror photo! 
My make up of the evening, I kept it simple with a pale pink lip colour and understated eye make up.

 There were soft drinks and wine on offer, as well as real ale.
A list of all the drinks available.
A delicious Cajun chicken burger.

 A plentiful supply of drinks!

How are you all? Let me know what you have been up to, I read and appreciate each comment and I follow back my followers :)
Best wishes until next time!
Camille xo.