Grand Ball

Last week our university had it’s annual sports and societies ball.
I’ve been so blessed to be part of the Amnesty society with people who have become some of my closest friends this year.
Whenever we’re all together it’s always a great time and I’m going to miss you all so much.
Don’t forget to skype me on your group meetings!

Grand Ball // L.Alexandra Grand Ball // L.AlexandraStandard procedure with the funny/creepy/weird/ugly faces.Grand Ball // L.AlexandraIt’s so great to find a group of people you just get along with and can be yourself.
Grand Ball // L.AlexandraThank you all for a fantastic evening!

All things coconuts

Recently I’ve been on a bit of a coconut trip.
I wasn’t always the biggest fan but recently I’ve been trying different things, such as coconut water, milk and yoghurt and actually really like it.
It’s great as I’m allergic to milk and it’s a nice change from soya and almond milk.

I know the options for coconut related things are endless and I am excited to try out more.
Till then, this is what I’ve tried so far.

Coconut water, mango and raw chocolate // L.AlexandraI love the flavoured coconut waters. I usually get the peach and mango or pineapple one.
With a mango and some raw chocolate, it’s the perfect afternoon snack or post-dinner dessert.
Arthur's Seat and coconut water // L.Alexandra I love taking coconut water with me to yoga or for walks as it’s more exciting than water and obviously a lot more healthy than carbonated drinks.
It’s a nice change from always drinking water.
Banana, coconut milk yoghurt, almond milk and chocolate smoothie // L.AlexandraI posted THIS smoothie recipe awhile ago and still love it.
I bought chocolate flavoured coconut milk the other day and used that with banana and it’s really good too but less thick as I didn’t add coconut milk yoghurt.
Fruit salad with coconut milk yoghurt // L.AlexandraTasting the rainbow!
I try to have fruits in the morning in the form or a fruit salad or smoothie and add two or three spoonfuls of coconut milk yoghurt to it.
You don’t need more in the salad as the yoghurt is pretty thick.
Coconut haul // L.AlexandraJust a few coconut related things I picked up at the health food store the other day.
I think that’s something I’ll really miss when I move back home in TEN DAYS!
Vita Coco Coconut Water // L.AlexandraI got a mini photography lesson from a friend a few weeks ago and took the coconut water with me on our walk.
Thanks again J!
Trek cocoa coconut protein bar // L.AlexandraDiscovered these protein bars at Sainsbury’s the other day and was truly impressed.
Usually the idea of a flapjack never really appealed to me but this was great.Coconut milk and berry ice cream (dairy free) // L.AlexandraI’ve spent the last couple of nights sleeping at my friend’s house because sleeping alone can suck.
She’s home alone at the moment and after an incident of catching someone looking through our letterbox at 5am, I wake up at every little noise.
So we figured we’d join forces and keep each other safe.
It’s also nice seeing as we’re both leaving soon and won’t see each other very often after.
And also cooking together and watching movies together is a lot more fun than doing it alone.

One night we decided to make The Londoner’s Skinny Breakfast Ice Cream, although we had it for dessert.
Super simple. All you do is blend frozen bananas, frozen berries and coconut milk.
Pop it in the freezer for a few hours and bam you got yourself dairy free, gluten free and super healthy ice cream.
I’m definitely making loads of this in the summer and keeping it in the freezer.
I might try and add some maple or agave syrup to sweeten it a bit.
Also it’s best when it’s a bit softer, more like frozen ice cream texture.
And add pomegranate seeds.
Banana, raspberry and coconut milk smoothie // L.AlexandraThe other day the sun FINALLY came out.
So after the gym I decided to make a smoothie that matched the summer vibes from the weather.
Frozen raspberries, banana and coconut milk.

What are your favourite coconut recipes?

Salmon and avocado mousse tortillas

I have no idea what has happened to the weather.
Remember when I blogged about how nice it was HERE and HERE?
Yeah, Edinburgh was just teasing.
For the last few days it has been so grey and rainy you feel like it’s constantly 6pm.

It makes you so tired and unmotivated.
But this meal was a little pick me up and reminded us all summer is not far off!

I hadn’t intended it to be a blog post and had just taken a photo of it because I like to take pictures of my food.
Hence, I only have one photo for this post.

Salmon and avocado mousse tortillas // L.Alexandra

It’s the perfect summer dish, light, tasty and easy to prepare.

You’ll need:
♦ Fresh salmon
♦ Mango
♦ Rocket
♦ Coriander
♦ Avocado
♦ Creme fraiche (or yoghurt)
♦ Tortillas

The fresher the fish the better. We got our from the fish monger.
Pre heat your oven to 180ºC.
Place the salmon on a baking tray, sprinkle with some sea salt and drizzle on a bit of olive oil.
Cover with foil and bake for about 15 min, depending on how well done you like it.
Blend the avocado and creme fraiche together until smooth.
Warm the tortillas in the oven or microwave.
Spread a generous helping of the avocado mousse onto the tortilla.
Now add the salmon, avocado, rocket and coriander.
Wrap it up and enjoy!

So easy and so so good!

Summer hurry!
I want to eat this in the sunshine.

Floating shelves

As my time at university draws to an end the prospect of having my own place becomes more real.
I’m moving back in with my parents first (thank you for having me again!) but depending on jobs I do plan to move out sooner rather than later.
I can’t wait to have my own space that I can decorate exactly the way I want.
The flats I’ve lived in the last three years were already furnished so there was little room for creativity.

I’ve always loved imagining what my future place will look like but now that it’s actually likely, I’ve started gathering more ideas of what I’ll want.
I love the idea of floating shelves used to display pictures, accessories, plants or some books on.

Here are some of my favourites I found on pinterest.
L.Alexandra // Floating shelvesPerfect symmetry and colour scheme.
L.Alexandra // Floating shelvesI love the use of different sized black frames.
L.Alexandra // Floating shelvesA floating shelf with all white accessories.
L.Alexandra // Floating shelvesIf you understand my obsession with grey sofas (HERE), you’ll understand why I love this room.
L.Alexandra // Floating shelvesAgain the grey sofas. But the accent colour of turquoise adds some great colour to this room.
L.Alexandra // Creative shelvesI love the idea of using spice racks as shelves so you can display the books rather than have them all in a shelf.
It’s great for kids books as they often have great illustrations on them.

What do you think of floating shelves?
Would you want them in your home?

Please click on the images for their source.

Chocolate, coconut, banana and almond milk smoothie

This has become my new favourite smoothie.
So easy and quick to make.
And I’d like to think fairly healthy.

L.Alexandra // Chocolate, coconut, banana and almond milk smoothieYou’ll need:
♦ Banana
♦ Coconut milk yoghurt
♦ Chocolate powder
♦ Almond milk

Depending on the consistency that you like add more or less coconut milk yoghurt or almond milk as desired.
Throw it all in a blender, mix and voila, your smoothie is done.
L.Alexandra // Chocolate, coconut, banana and almond milk smoothieI like to top it with some desiccated coconut for that extra lying on the beach feeling…
You know the one you get at the mere thought of coconut?
Yup that one!
L.Alexandra // Chocolate, coconut, banana and almond milk smoothieSometimes I’ll refrigerate it for an hour or so before drinking it so it’s nice cold.
Other times (when I’m impatient) I’ll drink it right away.

Speaking of lying on the beach…
How good would it be to make your own ice cream out of this?
With something like this.

What are your favourite smoothie recipes?

Final countdown and sunshine

I leave Edinburgh today in a month!
So crazy, can’t believe how fast the last three years have gone by.
But it feels good to be going home, after 7 years of living abroad I’m looking forward to living in Zürich for more than a summer.

I will definitely miss the days that Edinburgh is flooded with sunlight, the winds disappear and everyone is out and about.
I love all the coffee shops here that not only serve good coffee but usually great food too.
And of course the student life.
Soon it’s off into the ‘real’ world (whatever that means).

Last week when it was spring for two days V and I took a stroll to Bruntsfield and tried to soak up as much sun as we could.
L.Alexandra // Bruntsfield, Edinburgh L.Alexandra // Bruntsfield, Edinburgh L.Alexandra // Bruntsfield, EdinburghAll the daffodils had bloomed and the sea of yellow was so beautiful.
L.Alexandra // Bruntsfield, Edinburgh L.Alexandra // Bruntsfield, EdinburghI would love a pink coloured door!
L.Alexandra // Bruntsfield, Edinburgh L.Alexandra // Bruntsfield, Edinburgh

At Real Foods I discovered the best alternative to dairy ice cream.
It’s made using a unique process which combines cashews, agave syrup and pure water from reverse osmosis.
If that isn’t cool, I don’t know what is.
It is also one of the first dairy free, soya free, gluten free, organic and mostly raw ‘ice cream’ that tastes almost like the real thing.
I was so impressed!
Hoping they have something similar in Switzerland.

L.Alexandra // Bruntsfield, EdinburghDue to my milk allergy I can’t have much dairy ice cream which sucks because they taste so much better than sorbets or ice lollies.
If you’re in the same boat as me or just wanting to try something new I highly recommend trying Booja-Booja ice cream

L.Alexandra // Bruntsfield, EdinburghWe also visited the oldest charity shop in Edinburgh, which called for a selfie.L.Alexandra // Bruntsfield, Edinburgh L.Alexandra // Bruntsfield, EdinburghWe also visited a liquor store in Bruntsfield.
They’ve always really fascinated me.
Seeing all the different wines and spirits.
Would be so cool to know about them all!

L.Alexandra // Bruntsfield, Edinburgh L.Alexandra // Bruntsfield, EdinburghAnd this was the view on our walk back through the Meadows.

Edinburgh: give us more days like this!

Avocado, cheese and prosciutto toastie

I had the worst craving for a toastie the other day but we don’t have one of those fancy toastie appliances.
So I got creative and made this:

Avocado, cheese and prosciutto toastie // L.Alexandra And by this I mean an awesome toastie with avocado, prosciutto and cheddar cheese.
Avocado, cheese and prosciutto toastie // L.Alexandra You’ll need:
♦ Bread
♦ Cheddar cheese
♦ Prosciutto
♦ Avocado
♦ Butter
♦ Mayonnaise
Avocado, cheese and prosciutto toastie // L.Alexandra Spread a thin layer of mayonnaise on each slice of bread.
Put cheese on one slice, layer with prosciutto and add the mashed avocado.
Spread a thin layer of butter on the OUTSIDE of the sandwich.
Place in a heated frying pan, cover with a piece of foil (big enough to cover the sandwich) and put something heavy on top.
Like this:
Avocado, cheese and prosciutto toastie // L.Alexandra Make sure it doesn’t burn, then flip to toast the other side.
When it’s done the cheese should be melted and gooey.
(Mine wasn’t quite as melted as I would’ve liked…)

Avocado, cheese and prosciutto toastie // L.Alexandra Enjoy with a salad for the perfect lunch.

I stepped it up a notch the other day and added a fried egg into the mix.
Avocado, cheese, egg and prosciutto toastie // L.Alexandra

What are your favourite toastie recipes?

Urbanangel and sunshine

The sun finally shone today!
And the wind was at an all time low.
It feels like spring may actually be on its way.

Excited about this weather Silje and I decided to have lunch outside before a group meeting.
(Everyone knows group meetings work better on a full stomach).

Urbanangel, Edinburgh // L.Alexandra

We had agreed to meet at Urbanangel before knowing the weather so we were delighted to find out they had two small tables outside.
One which we happily occupied.

The awesome thing about Urbanangel is its organic, fair trade, local and seasonal.
Bam! Ticking all the boxes for good karma.

As we studied their menu we soaked in as much of the sun as we could.
Urbanangel, Edinburgh // L.AlexandraUrbanangel, Edinburgh // L.AlexandraThere were so many yummy things on the menu we could hardly decide what to get.
Urbanangel, Edinburgh // L.AlexandraSilje went for a fruit salad while I opted for their raw superfoods salad.
And to balance out all the healthiness we shared a side of handcut chips with garlic, thyme salt and aioli.
Urbanangel, Edinburgh // L.AlexandraDon’t underestimate the salad.
It was huge! I could barely finish it all and I was starving when I arrived after a morning work out.Urbanangel, Edinburgh // L.AlexandraI was so full actually that I had no room to try their desserts.
We moved inside to work on our assignment and I spent an hour eyeing the chocolate brownie. But no luck, my stomach was having none of it.

I did however have a cappuccino and it was the best coffee I’d had in awhile.
They do place a lot of value on their coffee and making it right.Urbanangel, Edinburgh // L.AlexandraBut hey, that just means I’ll have to go back and try them.
Also on my list for next time: try their juices.
Don’t they all sound delicious?

P.S.
Dear sun,
Please stay.
Forever.
You are beautiful and always make me happy.
I never want us to part again.
Sincerely,
Sun lovers all over Edinburgh.

Currently eating: red lentils

I often have this thing where I really want to try a certain food but have no idea how to incorporate it into my cooking.
Or then I forget about the food totally until on one of my pinterest quest I find a recipe with it.

This was sorta the deal with red lentils.
I remembered a few years ago I went through a phase where I had red lentils all the time.
And then I kinda forgot about them again…

Until I found these two recipes and now I can’t get enough!
I’ve made the red lentil coconut soup about four times in the last two months, it’s so good!
So good actually that I forgot to take pictures.

Thus, these pictures are not mine but by clicking on the image or the recipe name you’ll be redirected to the original creators.

First up is the red lentil coconut soup.red lentil coconut soupThis was the first of the lentil recipes I made and I loved it.
It’s super easy to make, it’s quick and it tastes so good.
I like to have naan bread with mine along with lots of fresh lime juice and coriander.
red lentil coconut soup 2I usually make loads (i.e. the full recipe) and then freeze single portions in freezer bags that I take out when I’m too lazy or strapped for time to cook.
It also beats having to eat the same thing five nights in a row…

Just don’t forget to add the lime and coriander!
It makes all the difference.

The next recipe was made with yellow lentils, hence the name: cauliflower yellow lentil curry.
But seeing as I’d bought 2kg of red lentils, I figured I could just swap it.
Yellow-Lentil-Curry-21This is similar to the first dish except it doesn’t use coconut milk but vegetable broth.
The addition of the cauliflower fits perfectly.
As you only put them in at the end they remain a bit crunchy which adds a lovely texture to the meal.
Like Lindsay, I served it with rice and you MUST try it with apricot jam like she suggests!
The slight sweetness from the jam compliments the curry flavour perfectly.
Yellow-Lentil-Curry-41I had it cold for lunch the next day and it still tasted fantastic.

Do you have any recipes using red lentils?
Please pass them on as I still have about 1/2kg of lentils!

London Part 3

Also the final part.
We spent the day wandering around Camden Market, pretty much waiting until lunch so we could hit up Shake Shack.
Jill had lived in New York for 6 months so knew all about Shake Shack but I’d only heard about it.
But decided it was worth a try.
And oh my! It was so good.

But first things first.
I present to you Camden Market.

Camden Market // L.AlexandraCamden Market // L.Alexandra Camden Market // L.Alexandra Camden Market // L.AlexandraCamden Market // L.AlexandraYou could get just about anything at Camden Market and it was unlike any other place we’d seen in London.

Camden Market // L.Alexandra Camden Market // L.AlexandraI loved this idea.
Opposite all the huts selling different kinds of foods they had these ‘tables’ overlooking the river and the chairs were the backends of motorcycles.
Talk about being creative!
And they were even covered and guessing by the lights, usable at night too.
Camden Market // L.Alexandra Camden Market // L.Alexandra Camden Market // L.Alexandra Camden Market // L.AlexandraAfter wandering around with many other tourists we jumped on the tube and headed over to Covent Garden.
Covent Garden // L.AlexandraWe found Shake Shack no problem but realised it was too early for lunch so we spent some time walking around Covent Garden and the market that they had.
Covent Garden // L.AlexandraBut soon we headed back for food.
Covent Garden // L.AlexandraLook! They even have dog treats.
I know my Grandma’s dog would definitely be treated to one of those…
Covent Garden // L.AlexandraYou order your food at the counter and then get one of these fun buzzers.
It’s a fast food place so the decoration of the eating areas is pretty simple.
Plus as there’s a lot of people, especially on a Sunday, you eat and leave, freeing up your seats for the next hungry Shake Shakers.
Covent Garden // L.AlexandraI guess that means we’ll be friends for awhile J…
Covent Garden // L.AlexandraIt doesn’t look that great but let me tell you, those burgers were amazing!
I’m always a bit sceptical of burgers from fast food joints, especially of the buns but I was very pleasantly surprised.
Also the concretes (dense frozen ice cream blended at high speed with mix ins) is definitely worth the indulgence.

London // L.AlexandraLondon // L.AlexandraSwitzerland being repped in London.

Chipotle // London

After lunch we walked from Covent Garden to Chipotle in Soho where we picked up burritos to take on the plane as dinner.
Ha! As you seen our trip involved a lot of eating.

Thanks J for an amazing weekend <3
I can’t wait for our next trip!