2012 – The way it was on Hotly Spiced

Archie asleep in church on Easter Sunday

As the year comes to a close I thought it would be interesting to look back on the posts I’ve written over the year and discover the stories that generated the most comments.  It’s a list I found quite surprising and I thought you might like to see the Top 10 Most Commented on posts […]

Boxing Day

Christmas Day leftovers for Boxing Day - Spinach and Rocket Salad with Pomegranates

Sometimes it’s just not enough to get together on Christmas Day, you have to spend Boxing Day together too.  Christmas is the ultimate celebration but with a large family it can be hectic and stressful and busy and challenging.  No one in my family would swap this for any different experience but despite this, there’s […]

Christmas 2012


I’ve been wondering how you all celebrated Christmas and hope you had the best of days and thought I would give you a glimpse into how my family and I spent Christmas.  After much debate and at least 60 emails it was decided Christmas would, as usual, be at my parents’ house which is actually […]

Merry Christmas 2012

Thank you Archie, Arabella and Alfie

All of us here at Hotly Spiced Headquarters would like to wish you a very Merry Christmas.  We hope you have a lovely time spending time with family and catching up with relatives and friends.  Enjoy the best the season has to offer and we’ll see you in a few days. In the meantime, please […]

The Gingerbread House

A terrible photo of the gingerbread house

It hasn’t been a good day in the kitchen here at Hotly Spiced Headquarters. I wasn’t going to make a gingerbread house this year; mostly because the December 25 deadline is hurtling towards me at a frightening pace and in the last few weeks I’ve been incredibly busy and I know from experience that gingerbread […]

Mum’s Christmas Mince Pies

Christmas Mince Pies

In the lead-up to Christmas when I was a little girl we knew the big day was close when in the evening we would be dressed in our nighties and sitting in the family room doing puzzles or colouring-in when we’d hear the sound of carols coming from a big brass band.  We would run […]


The bar.  And that orange cable is the cord for the vacuum cleaner!

After the mop-up from my time on the high seas, my employer, who had been away at the same time but on a different P&O ship, wanted to take me out for lunch to celebrate our hard work that had resulted in a very happy client.  I was thinking we might be taking an hour […]

The Christmas Cake

The 2012 Christmas Cake

It seems to have been a long time in the making but it certainly wasn’t started early enough.  A few weeks ago I showed you a porcelain bowl filled with dried fruits and nuts soaking in brandy.  And soak they did.  For weeks.  It just seemed to take an inexcusable amount of time to progress […]


Basil and tomato pasta

I’ve had a few queries from readers wanting to know not how I survived the cruise but how the family survived without me.  I can report they are all alive but as Alfie’s teacher just penned in a comment, ‘We’ve missed you and I’m sure Alfie has too. No wonder he’s looking a bit thin […]

Salt Grill

Salt Grill on board Pacific Grill

Thank you all so much for the warm welcome back to the blogosphere.  You are all so kind! I just have to tell you more about the cruise. When I was on the cruise ship I was working long hours but not so long that I couldn’t enjoy some time at Salt Grill.  Salt Grill […]