Emily Fruit Crisps

A few weeks ago I was sent some Emily fruit crisps.

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While Emily and her partner, Alex were travelling in the Far East, they found a way of making crisps in a vacuum that preserves all the good things in fruit while still being really crunchy.

And look how gorgeous the packaging is too.

They just contain fruit (either apple, pineapple or banana) and some non-hydrogenated vegetable oil (not sure of the percentage).

I have had apple crisps before, and liked them, so I tried the pineapple first.

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They were hard to photograph, but you can see the sort of size. They were lovely- a nice crunch but not break-your-teeth crunchy, and the pineapple flavour was delicious.  I liked that they were a bit thicker too- some fruit crisps I have tried have been paper thin, but these were more chunky. The packet was 30g, and I saved some for later as that is a lot of crisps.

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They are lovely on their own, but I think that for a treat the apple ones would be amazing dipped in some caramel sauce.

Are you a fan of fruit crisps? I tend to associate crispy things with savoury flavours, but these made a lovely snack.

Kermit, let’s begin, describe the day you played Berlin

Yup, that song was in my head for our whole trip! Luckily I loved the Muppets Movie!

Way back in May we had a trip to Norway and then Germany. Originally we were going to Norway for half term, to tour and then to run the Oslo Rock ‘n’ Roll half marathon on the final Saturday. But then it got cancelled, and then we looked at hotel prices in Norway. They were rather large.

So on Friday night we flew to Bergen (we didn’t get to our hotel until gone midnight), then were up early the next morning for a tour of a fjord. The wrong one, it turned out.

The idea was to do the “Norway in a Nutshell” tour- a train from Bergen, then a bus, then a boat, then another train. We got on the train, got off an hour later (along with everyone else) to be greeted by about 15 buses, all with the tour name on the front. We got on one bus, but then were told to get off as there were no seats. We then had an hour journey, before getting off and getting on a boat. At this point I was worried there would be no toilet on the boat, so I went quickly in the little tourist information shop, and when I came out the boat was about to leave so I had to run. I mention this because the people on the boat didn’t check the ticket…

Anyway, Andy mentioned that it didn’t look like how he imagined, and when we looked at the bus ticket we realised we had managed to get on the wrong bus. We did wonder where the other 14 buses were! This led to a rather panicked 5 minutes (we were on a boat, in the middle of a fjord, heading goodness knows where…) before Andy managed to get internet on his phone and find out where we were. Luckily the boat stopped after an hour, and we went to the tourist place there, and booked boat tickets for a return journey (and then a bus)- it was a long day!

The next morning we had a leisurely breakfast in our hotel, before heading to the funicular. It had beautiful views of the city, and lovely marked walks. We walked to a nearby lake, before heading back and treating ourselves to a cup of tea (we were tempted by sharing some cake, but it was £7 for a little slice!). You could get the train back down, but there was a marked trail so we did that instead- it was very steep in places but really nice as it was mostly paths through woods.

We then had a wander around the town and out to a little park, before getting our bag from the hotel and heading to the airport.

We were off to Berlin!

Again we arrived quite late, so the next morning decided to not set the alarm and have breakfast in our hotel. It was only after we sat down and had ordered drinks that we found out it was a buffet- 20 Euros each. Anyway, at least it had plenty of options for me, and meant we didn’t need lunch!

We walked miles! To the Brandenburg Gate, to a big park, various memorials.

We sat in the park for a bit in the afternoon- bliss.

Ritter Sport was everywhere! I fondly remember it as a corner shop staple from when I was little, and I was very excited to find this mini selection pack. I loved the chocolate with cornflakes in there, but sadly could not find a big bar of it.

We saw lots of these bears, but I only remembered to take photos of two!

And one was at the airport!

The next day we bought passes for the trains, so went a bit further afield -Jason Bourne spotting in Alexander Platz, seeing Checkpoint Charlie and looking at various parts of the Berlin wall. I found it really interesting as I didn’t know much about it. I don’t really remember the wall coming down, and I didn’t realise when it was built. There was lots of information to take in, but it was done well (although nothing was glossed over).

The final day it rained, but we only had the morning before our flight, so we went to a few indoor things- the holocaust memorial had a centre below it so we spent some time reading all the individual stories.

Then it was time for a spot of shopping before braving the rain to walk back to our hotel. By this point my jeans were wet through.

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Berlin goodies

Delicious Ritter Sport (Nugat, confusingly for me, is not nougat but rather a lovely praline filled chocolate) including some special winter flavours (they were cheap too!)- caramel orange and coconut macaroon. I have had the caramel one, and that was OK, but I have high hopes for the macaroon one- saving it for a special occasion! Plus a Starbucks cup. At work we are only allowed cups like this, and Starbucks actually do dishwasher safe ones, whereas most insulated ones aren’t suitable. Plus the lids fit. I bought a pretty one in Hawaii but the lid doesn’t go on properly so I can’t really use it. We also bought magnets for both places, our fridge is getting ever more crowded.

IMG_5699They did a Berlin one too, but I liked the castle on the back. I would love to go back to Germany and travel around Bavaria a bit- it looks so pretty.

 Have you ever been to Norway or Germany?

 

Running in the heat

It is tough. I run much better when it is cool, but luckily I am running for fun and not training at the moment.

But also the weather forecast has not been that helpful- I went out on Friday night in the sweltering heat, because I thought Saturday would be more storms, but in fact Saturday was overcast and would have been fine. Ah well.

Anyway, Sunday was a lovely 6.5 mile run looping around the fields. Just perfect to be home before most people were awake. Although it was so hot as the sun was blazing down.

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Too cool down after that I made a chai latte- I had some coconut tea brewing in my tea jug, and had some of that topped up with almond milk. I have made this with a little splash of cinnamon syrup too, but it is lovely just like that too.

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So summery.

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As we are off on holiday soon we have been trying to run the freezer down a bit. I found a scone in there so had it for lunch on Sunday with some lemon curd. Delish.

On Monday and Tuesday I had a run after work- both the same out and back route mostly through the fields. On Monday I ran out for 15 minutes, then turned around and headed home- I got back in 14 minutes so I was pretty pleased to manage that in the heat. My Garmin has been playing up a bit though- it finds a satellite, then when I start it, it loses the signal again so often the first half a mile of my run is not on the map, and then it affects the overall speed and distance too. Today was the same route but I didn’t pay attention to the time, I just enjoyed it- on my way back there was a lovely strong breeze so it was more comfortable.

I have been wearing my tennis visor which keeps my face cool, and trying to choose shady routes, but really in this weather I think any run is a bonus so I am just enjoying it.

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I made some fudge at the weekend as gifts for colleagues (note to self, boiling up sugar when it is baking hot outside is not the best way to cool down), so I packaged that all up. I got those cute bags and tags from ebay- so pretty. I got some red spotty ones too that remind me of Minnie Mouse, but will be good colours for Christmas.

We have been having some lovely walks after dinner too- I have not been using my hairdryer as it i so hot, so this lunchtime my hair was still wet from last night! This evening we had a walk which started off my hair drying at least.

Any cooling down tips? 

Not so much running

And not even because of the heat! On Sunday afternoon I was sneezing a bit, but thought it was because of the sunshine, but by Sunday night it had turned into a proper cold, with a sore throat and neck (I could only turn my head to the left as my neck was swollen on one side).

So, no running for me.

Tuesday and Wednesday I still didn’t feel great, so we had a walk on Tuesday and went to the cinema on Wednesday. We saw Boyhood, which was really good, but long, and I had work to do once I got home so was not quite in the right mood for it.

Thursday I was home late, too late for pump really, and so opted for another walk and a bit of a relaxing evening- I was pretty shattered.

Then at about 3.30 in the morning we had the most crazy thunderstorm I have ever seen ( to rival one from Florida)- lightning every 10 seconds at times, and so close by. Luckily it woke me up as I had to rush around to close all the windows!

This was waiting for me when I got home on Friday! I am doing this run in October (I am doing the 15K, but there is a 10K or 5K option too)- I think I must have decided to buy the top when I signed up, but it arrived on its own- they must be sending out the race packs later.  We had sports day at work so I had been outside in the heat a lot, but wanted a run as the weather here for Saturday was meant to be more storms- after seeing them the other night I didn’t think that was sensible. So at about 6pm I headed out on a short run. I did an out and back route- the first half a mile was shaded, and the next mile was through the fields- no shade but a breeze so I didn’t feel too bad. But then I turned around and the breeze disappeared. It was horrendous. Almost like it was hard to breathe, and although I had suncream on I almost felt like I could feel my skin sizzling and burning. I didn’t really enjoy the mile back through the fields and ended up feeling a bit sick- I was very glad of the shade for the final part, and took it pretty slowly.

Then I was awake early on Saturday morning, and although it was raining a bit at first, by 8.30 the rain had stopped and it was still overcast- much better running weather- I should have waited! I did a lot of tidying and cleaning instead, and then made some pancakes.

IMG_5772These were made with 1 egg, some almond milk, some of that Pulsin’ soya protein powder, coconut flour, baking powder and almond extract.  Not sure of the amounts- tablespoon here, a drop there, but mixed until they made batter that looked OK. It shows how hot it has been as the jar of coconut oil in my cupboard had turned to liquid! I had two topped with that delicious almond butter, and one with nutella, plus 2 doughnut peaches. Mmm, hello weekend.

More tidying awaited (during a busy week nothing gets done at home- I just put things into “neat” piles as that makes me feel better), before lunch.

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Sourdough with tomato pesto and avocado (yes, chopped the avocado on the plate as I had just cleaned and tidied the kitchen so didn’t want to make a chopping board dirty), plus some iced tea.  This was coconut pineapple black tea which I ordered here from ebay ages ago- I added half a cup of boiling water to the tea jug, left for a minute then topped with cold water and chilled overnight. It is delicious, probably my favourite home-made iced tea yet.

Also, was just emailed a discount code for the remaining Women’s Running 10K races (Bristol 2nd Augustl/ Glasgow 6th Sept/ Finsbury Park 27th Sept)- £20 if you enter LETMERUN – worth a try to see if the discount will work if you fancy one of them- that includes the technical t-shirt so pretty good value. I really enjoyed it and would keep my eyes out for them next year. 

Right, I am off to the allotment as I am hoping it will be a bit cooler out there now.

How have you been coping in the heat?

Deliveries!

Hey peeps!

I have been very lucky over the past few weeks to be sent a few some parcels with goodies to review.

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I was sent a few products from the My Protein group. I chose some True Women vitamins from myvitamins.com, some flaked coconut from myprotein.com, and some almond butter from thehut.com. I love the packaging that the vitamins come in- these will be easier to take on holiday than a little jar. Although they are rather large! I did get a tip from someone at work- to look to one side as you swallow as that helps open up your throat. The vitamins are suitable for veggies, and have plenty of iron and B vitamins in there, which is what I was looking for as I have been a bit worried about being tired recently. A small point was that I did find the website hard to navigate as I could not see an option to sort by dietary requirements- something I would find useful as so often I would click on something and find it was not suitable.

The coconut is gorgeous – it does have a small amount of added sugar (1%) but no sulphur dioxide which is what I was looking for, as so many dried fruits contain it, and it does not agree with my tummy. I am looking forward to baking with it, but so far have enjoyed some slices as a snack.

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This almond butter is so good- really drippy, and no salt added either, just 100% almonds. I decided to make some cookies from my Oh She Glows cookbook. The recipe is pretty much this one, only using almond butter not peanut butter. I just used normal flour instead of the oat flour, and they turned out pretty awesome!

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I added some flaked coconut to some of them before I baked them.

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Seriously- make them. Almond + chocolate + coconut is an amazing combination.

On Sunday morning I was up early so decided to head out for a run. I did 6.5 miles over the fields, but it was really humid and I was roasting by the time I got home. To cool down we had our first acai bowl of the year.

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This was a frozen banana, some frozen cherries and frozen blueberries, all blended up with some almond milk and acai powder. We put muesli in our bowls, top with the frozen smoothie, then top with a chopped nectarine and some coconut. Summer in a bowl.

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I had a few Holland and Barrett points so ended up ordering a little parcel of goodies online (although later found out that Ocado now stock coconut oil and for much cheaper, so I shall be getting it from there next time). I wanted to try the Salt of the Earth deodorant, as I would quite like to avoid aluminium (and have tried a few natural brands but not been that impressed). Unfortunately it is just that, a deodorant, and not an antiperspirant. I like the fact that they are both unfragranced, as often the fragrance irritates my skin, but I do still feel a little bit sticky still, so I think I might use them on cool days, but use my bad stuff on hot days.

I saw these meridian bars and had to try them (they are vegan and soya/gluten free)! The almond one is made with almonds, brown rice malt, agave nectar, rice bran, concentrated fruit juice, rice protein, rice starch and sunflower lecithin. It was rather sweet, but I liked it, and the texture reminded me of a less chalky Pulsin bar (I do like Pulsin bars, but they are just on the verge of being that weird chalky texture that some protein bars have). I bought the toothpaste on a whim- I have been using Green People moisturiser and liking it, so thought I would try it, although am using my current toothpaste first.

But my favourite delivery of all…..

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Wow look at these beauties! Wiggle were having a sale, and I could not resist. I have Asics trail shoes which I really like, and thought I would give a normal pair a go. I had to swap them for half a size up as the 5.5′s I ordered were more like 5′s (according to the US and European sizes on the box) but they are really comfortable. The only trouble is I don’t want to get them muddy.

Now, that should be enough for me, but Thoosa are now having a sale and I am really in love with their workout tops and slogan t-shirts…

Anyone else an online shopping addict?