If you were given the choice to spend £250 ($400) on one dress or £250 on one dress, a jacket, shoes and accessories what would you do?
Add to the mix that the money isn’t yours. In fact, not only is it not yours, it’s not anyone’s. That works because you are being given the items for free.
I had this dilemma last week and “umm”ed and “ahh”ed over it for enough time to drive everyone around me in the store a slightly bit crazy.
See I never have the chance to spend that much money on one item of clothing! I don’t even know what a £250 dress feels like…looks like…hangs like. No it never comes near my hemisphere.
Anyway you might be wondering how this dilemma came about.
This Friday evening is the MAD Blog Awards Ceremony in London. I am finalist in the Best MAD Family Food Blog category. As a finalist, I was invited by John Lewis to spend a morning with one of their Fashion Advisers and given a sponsored outfit worth – yes you’ve got it – £250.
I can’t rave enough about what a pleasurable experience this was. My stylist, Debbie, talked with me about exactly what I was looking for and what I usually liked wearing. Thing was I really didn’t know what I wanted and as for what I normally wear, well let’s just not go there. So Debbie went off looking around the women’s department for a dress that might look good but also appeal. I was amazed at what she found. None of the dresses I would have chosen myself. Yet all looked really stylish and flattering! It’s definitely given me a whole new insight in to how I can improve my wardrobe in general. A bit more colour, a bit less oversized. Fitting can look good if it’s the right fit for you. (Thank you John Lewis! It was a really fantastic experience.)
As for the outcome of my dilemma. Well what do you think? All I’m saying is I now know what makes a £250 dress worth – yup one more time now – two hundred and fifty pounds!
Chocolate and Pumpkin Cupcakes with Chocolate Peanut Butter Icing
Sounds like a strange combination? Chocolate and pumpkin? Thing is you really don’t taste the pumpkin. It’s there to add moisture and a little bit of autumn to every bite.
For the cakes:
100g ground almonds
200g light brown sugar
200g tinned pumpkin
40g cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
For the icing:
100g smooth peanut butter
2 tablespoons icing sugar, sifted
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
5 tablespoons of boiling water
Preheat oven to 180c/350f/gas mark 4. Prepare 12 hole cupcake tin by lining with paper cases.
Whisk eggs and sugar for around 5 minutes until pale and fluffy. Add pumpkin, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, salt and ground almonds. Whisk until all ingredients are well combined.
Spoon mixture in the cases and place in oven for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool in tin for 10 minutes. Transfer to fridge and let cool completely.
Icing: combine peanut butter, icing sugar, cocoa powder with the back of a spoon to create a paste like mixture. Slowly add the boiling water one spoonful at a time while whisking the mixture. The paste should become smooth and spreadable. (If it’s too runny add a bit more sifted icing sugar or too thick add a tiny bit more water.)
When the cakes are completely cooled spread icing over them and decorate with some chopped peanuts or peanut butter morsels.