Friday, 21 November 2014

Nutella for Nigella !

The 20th November will henceforth be known as "Nigella Day" or "Nutella for Nigella day"... here is why!

I was very excited to receive an email from The School of Life about an event where Alain de Botton would be in conversation with Nigella Lawson on The Meaning of Food.. as a Nutrition graduate, food fanatic and all round worshipper of both Alain de Botton AND Nigella Lawson - I went swooping for my purse to book a ticket faster than ever....

In preparation for this special evening - I happen to know that Selfridges currently have a special Nutella stand in their food hall where you can get any name printed onto a jar of Nutella. So of course - I ask them to print one for Nigella (see below) - a huge success!

On the morning of the talk, I went to CocoMaya - my favourite bakery on Connaught Street to buy fresh Cronuts / Cocodoughs as I happen to know that she loves them too. Salted Caramel for @FevRave, chocolate for me.. pistachio for her!

The talk itself was, of course, a sell out. Hundreds of people filed into the Emmanuel Centre on Marsham Street. I was not too near the front, which was a clever and strategic move as I had a perfect view but was able to make a quick exit to meet her afterwards and avoid the queue. 

I find it very hard to sit still and tune into things (my mind wonders, as all minds do). But the moment Alain de B started to talk and ask questions... and Nigella gave us her pearls of wisdom - I was captivated. 

Here are some quotes from the evening - 

"There's nothing better than a soft boiled egg on toast"

"I don't like boorishness or bad manners around the dinner table but I like discussion."

"If food is the most important thing at a dinner party, there's something wrong"

"Those of us that like to cook are normally quite controlling"

"All things in moderation, including moderation"

"I don't believe in the 22 minute lunch break but I eat very fast." - ME TOO

"The older I get I feel that memories are so much more important than things"

"Lemons: people forget the absolutely exquisite pleasure of the sour"

"I don't like food snobbery. The upper middle classes are trying to feel superior 
by only eating seasonally"

"One shouldn't worry about being judged"

"When I read, I get a profound sense of whether I like the taste of a sentence"

'Writing and cooking are like reading and eating'

"I don't believe in comfort food...I believe in comfort cooking"

"Cooking isn't cooking if you are just following the recipe"

'If you're someone who has to get to a station hours early for a train, you should cook your chicken slowly"

Nigella liked food but not meal times as a child. She got interested in food through language and also cooking. 

Having had a rocky relationship with food, I came away feeling uplifted and inspired and in awe of her approach to food and eating. 

The questions from the audience were great too - someone asked what she thought about the "22 minute lunch hour" and the rise of Pret. I loved how she said that although her office is at home, everyone sits down for lunch away from phones and screens even though the topic of conversation over lunch might be work related..

I admire Nigella in so many ways. She is an Oxford University graduate and was once the Deputy Literary Editor of the Sunday Times before turning to food writing and publishing several extremely successful cookery books amongst many other things.

I felt I learnt more that evening than I did throughout my entire university degree. Much food for thought... haha. To be in the presence of food royalty, someone so highly intelligent, staggeringly beautiful and wise was a real privilege.

It was an added bonus to receive this tweet this morning - 

I say "Hurrah for Nutella. Hurrah for Nigella".

All in all, the whole evening was a total triumph and undoubtedly one of the biggest highlights of my year so far. 

Thursday, 6 November 2014

News from Miranda HQ

There has been no time to feel down about Benedict being unavailable.... I think I can link the number of blog posts I write with how busy I am. I haven't had a moment to write for ages and I miss not being able to bore you all with my news.

Autumn has well and truly arrived in London. I walk the three miles to work everyday whatever the weather and its my absolute favourite time of day. I plug in my iPod and off I go. Current music of choice is either Ella Henderson's new album or anything by Natalia Kills. There are crunchy leaves all over the park, the air is so crisp and chilly - a huge drop in degrees C since the unusually hot halloween we had last week. 

walk straight through Hyde Park... this was the blue sky that greeted me this morning. I love my commute. I walk past the same joggers, dog walkers, army officers, personal trainers, policeman guarding Kensington palace...

October was fun and busy. I met Alan Yentob, the Creative Director of the BBC. We both went to watch Ruby perform her show in Colchester and then got the train and taxi back to Notting Hill with her afterwards. Can't believe its over... But I am well informed that there are more dates in London next year. 

I also met Stephen Fry - he was as sensational as I always imagined he would be. Can't wait to get stuck into his new book. I am currently reading Rahla Xenopolous's memoir, A Memoir of Love and Madness, which is incredible.

November is set to be even more fun - for starters, I am going to meet Nigella Lawson..! More on that another time. I have to work for most of this weekend but will certainly try and get to some fireworks - perhaps Battersea Park ? Its so frustrating still sitting at work at 7 pm and being able to hear them outside but not see them.

In other news, we have a new puppy at home: meet Lara...

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Benedict Cumberbatch is off the market!

Every girl's dream was shattered this week when it was discovered that Benedict Cumberbatch was engaged to his heart throb Sophie Hunter....

Honestly - first it was George and now Benedict....!

Most celebrities would take to Twitter or some form of technology to tell the world of this news... Benedict C has very little official internet presence and certainly no Twitter page.  

So he opted for an announcement in the Times newspaper instead...!

More (more interesting!) news to follow in the world of Miranda....stay tuned!

Burberry: From London with Love

On Monday evening, as I was rushing to Covent Garden on foot from work to meet friends, there were a large gaggle of paparazzi standing outside Burberry on Bond Street, London. I often see Paparazzi lurking and out of curiosity always ask who they are waiting for (Rita Ora was staying in a house on my road recently - the photographers were there for about 10 days). 

On this occasion, they just said "some VIPS". Later, I found out who they were really waiting for and if only I had known as would love to have been there when they emerged. It was the Beckhams at the launch of the Burberry Christmas campaign as their son Romeo was the main feature.... Very sweet video -