13.2.18

Date Night (V Day) Ideas For Active Couples*

*my first disclaimer for this post is that you do not need to be in a relationship to celebrate Valentines Day these days. It's just as much fun to get a group of friends together for the evening to celebrate... and these ideas would be just as suitable for your "Galentines" fun...


Personally, I'm not a huge fan of Valentines Day. Mostly due to the commercialisation... you know, like they've done with Christmas. But at least I actually know and remember the real meaning behind the winter festivities...

HelloFresh recently conducted a poll which found that over a third of Brits are planning on shunning restaurants in favour of a romantic night in with their partner this Valentines because it seems that...  

Staying In Is The New Going Out 
Natalie of The Floral Republic tells me that she will "be having a night in by myself bingeing on Netflix and wine!...not bitter at all!"

Beki of Miss Wheezy shared that "[we] don't really do Valentines Day but seeing as it's Pancake Day today and [we're] out this evening, we'll probably combine the two and make heart shaped pancakes!"

Viki is also having a night in... She says "I'm having a chilled dinner at home with my husband, maybe with a board game or two. Although the big one is our 11 year anniversary on Friday so he has a surprise in store for me then!" 

Going Crazy...Golf (lol) 
This is what I will be up to on Wednesday evening... once I finish teaching. I'll be heading over to Swingers in the City to share a round of crazy golf, some heart shaped pizza and champers of course! I'll also share all the fun over on my Instagram on the night...

Hit The Gym With Your Gal Dem
Sarah (That SquatBot) tells me "my boyfriend is working away this week so I’ll be with my REAL Valentines tomorrow night... with my gals from the gym at a weightlifting class!" 

How About A Climbing Date? 
Jen of MumBeta says "although [it's] less romantic when you find out that we climb together every Wednesday. Why change things up when that’s what we love to do!"

And How Bout Some Gift Inspo? 
Tess (The FitBits) says "a couple of years ago chris bought me a pull up bar - best present ever!" ...we can't argue with that, right?!

...hope you all enjoy your evening whatever you have planned!

Happy Valentine Day! 


Elle :) 

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p.s here is my contribution to pancake day over on Instagram...

Who would I be if I didn’t have a pancake picture to share?! πŸ€”πŸ™„πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ€·πŸΎ‍♀️ . Spent the morning eating as many pancakes as my belly could hold all made by and with @pipandnut πŸΏπŸ™ŒπŸΎ . Also took part in their #FlipOff which I officially won πŸŽ‰πŸŽˆπŸŽŠ ...the prize being a hooooge tub of almond butter (my favourite 😍) ...DON’T WATCH ME πŸ’πŸΎ‍♀️ lol . I had all the vegan pancakes, choc hazelnut butter, all the fruit, coconut yoghurt, dark choc shavings, sprinkles of coconut... needed fuel for a little bit of BadAss and HardCore Training @gymboxofficial innit 😝 . Tell me you remembered it was pancake day today?! (I did remind y’all yday) . #keepitsimpElle #londonbloggers #naturalnuttiness.
A post shared by Elle | Fitness Pro & Blogger (@ellelinton) on

9.2.18

The Basics of Batch Cooking with #JohnLewisHome


National Pizza Day I think is as good an excuse as any to publish this post. And to ensure it makes sense, I’m gonna start at the end and finish at the beginning!

Last weekend, I had what turned out to be the brilliant idea of making homemade pizza. After running the London Winter Run it seemed like the perfect way to spend an evening indoors and enjoy some good food. It turned out well... although the process takes about an hour (but only maybe 15 mins of work) your pizzas only then take 5/6 mins to cook. With the added bonus of knowing what’s in your food, choosing the toppings and no need to be stingy with said toppings!!

And because I’m one to share the fun, I have the very simple pizza recipe to share with you:

PIZZA MARGHERITA

Serves 4 | Prep Time: 1 hour | Cook Time: 30 mins

Ingredients

Pizza dough

14g fresh yeast
1 tsp caster sugar
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
500g strong white bread flour
1 tsp fine sea salt

Tomato margherita sauce

1 clove of garlic chopped
400g chopped tinned tomatoes
6 basil leaves torn
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

To finish:

150g grated mozzerella
8 basil leaves torn

How to prepare

1. Preheat the oven 230 degrees. Place a flat baking tray into the oven to warm.

For the pizza dough:
1. In a large bowl, mix together the yeast, sugar, oil, flour and salt, and add 325ml of lukewarm water.

2. Using your hands, bring the mixture together into a ball of dough, tip out onto a lightly-floured surface and knead for five minutes until you have a smooth, elastic ball of dough.

3. Place in a large bowl and lightly cover with cling film. Leave to prove for 45 minutes or until the dough has doubled in size.

To make the tomato sauce:

1. Gently fry the garlic in olive oil for a few minutes until soft then add the basil, tomatoes and season with salft and pepper. Cook on a medium heat for 20 minutes until thickend. Remove from the heat and leave to cool.

To assemble the pizza:

1. Turn the proved dough out onto a lightly-floured surface and gently knead for one minute to knock out the air. Divide the dough into four even-sized balls.

2. To assemble the pizza, roll out one ball of dough at a time to the thickness of a pound coin.

3. Carefully place each rolled out dough onto a thin baking tray dusted with semolina flour. Spoon and spread one tbsp of the cooled tomato sauce over the base, then scatter the grated mozzerella and two torn basil leaves on top.

4. Carefully transfer the assembled pizza onto the hot baking tray in the oven by sliding it in. Cook for five minutes or until golden. Carefully remove the tray from the oven and repeat the same process with the next three balls of dough.

***

I made my pizza vegan by using this vegan cheese. It doesn’t melt as well as actual mozzarella so I highly recommend you do as the packet / recipe says and take the time to grate it.

So where did I get this brilliant idea from? That would be a batch cooking masterclass I went to earlier in the week with John Lewis at the Waitrose Cooking School. It was a great evening showcasing how one simple tomato based sauce could be used to make a multitude of dishes (including said pizza). On the evening I also got to try my hand at making my own pasta (not too arduous a task) and got to devour everything that was made on the night.




Apparently, we’d all save a staggering £1,493 per year if we incorporated batch cooking into our daily routines which isn’t half bad. I’m a massive fan of the time saving aspect too especially when life gets busy, I’m active and time poor. Check out this page over on John Lewis for tons more tips about batch cooking and other recipes using the tomato sauce; you have to give the recipes a go and let me know what you think. Everyone was LOVING them over on my Instagram Stories so I’m excited to finally share them with ya!

And I don’t think I’ll be buying pre-made pizza too often now I know how simple it is to make! ...So who's already nailed batch cooking? Any tips for us?!


Elle :) 

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