My 2018 Reading List

Thursday, January 18, 2018

What are the few books you're looking forward to read this year? With the incredible abundance of new releases coming our way, it's hard to narrow down our reading list to a manageable number, isn't it? So, to make things easier, here are 14 books that I hope to devour in the next 12 months, and maybe some of them will tickle your fancy as well...

From the top: 1. Trying by Emily Phillips  - 2. Peach by Emma Glass - 3. Happiness for Humans by P. Z. Reizin - 4. The Cactus by Sarah Haywood - 5. I Am, I Am, I Am: Seventeen Brushes With Death by Maggie O'Farrell - 6. Everything I Know About Love by Dolly Alderton...

From the top: 7. You Think It, I'll Say It: Stories by Curtis Sittenfeld - 8. Self-Care for the Real World by Nadia Narain and Katia Narain Phillips - 9. The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin - 10. Calm by Fearne Cotton...

From the top: 11. Motherhood: A Novel by Sheila Heti - 12. The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock by Imogen Hermes Gowar - 13. Swearing Is Good For You by Emma Byrne - 14. You Do You: How to Be Who You Are and Use What You've Got to Get What You Want (A No F*cks Given Guide) by Sarah Knight.

P.P.S: Plus, 10 amazing cookbooks.

(Top photo via So Many Fragile Things. Layouts by exPress-o)

Natural Shampoo (That Works)

If one of your goals this year is to opt for more natural, zero waste and sustainable ways to care for your hair, you should try replacing your go-to shampoo with organic Shikakai powder mix that Lucie swears by.

Shikakai has been used in India for centuries as hair wash and conditioner. It will clean and deep condition your hair making it look healthy, smooth and soft.

Simply make a mixture using a teaspoon of Shikakai powder and water, and use it twice a week. Apply to your hair for about 15 minutes while you are having your bath or taking a shower, rinse and in Lucie's words: 'be ready for the smoothest hair you’ve ever had!'

I just ordered this Shikakai powder, but this one looks good too. Can't wait to give this a try. Will you try it too? What's your go-to natural shampoo?

P.S: And this...
P.P.S: Plus, that.

(Photo and how-to by Practically Zero Waste)

Yay! It's Wednesday Cake!

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Happy happy first Wednesday Cake Day of 2018! Ready for something totally delicious and very foreign?

As most of you already know, my Balazs is Hungarian and one of his all time favourite Hungarian desserts is túrógombóc, aka cottage cheese balls that are traditionally served with sweetened sour cream, but he makes it with homemade raspberry sauce instead.

The sweet cottage cheese combined with the crunchy sourness of raspberries makes for a truly warming flavour combination that feels light, fresh and comforting at the same time. What makes this dessert even more special is that we always eat it warm during the winter...

So if you fancy trying something new this week, that takes no effort at all and just a few simple ingredients, make those cheese balls and you won't be sorry... :)

Túrógombóc aka Cottage Cheese Balls with Raspberry Sauce 
(Recipe by Balazs. Makes about 7-9 balls, depending on the size)

- 250 grams (8.8 oz) cottage cheese
- 2 eggs
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- a bit of vanilla pod or vanilla extract (it's up to you)
- 1 tablespoon of butter and a dash more for breadcrumb roasting
- pinch of salt
- 3 tablespoons Semolina
- 3 tablespoons breadcrumbs

For the raspberry sauce:
- 125 grams (4.4 oz) frozen raspberries
- 8 teaspoons of brown sugar

Start by softening and putting apart the cheese using a fork.

Combine the soften cheese with 2 egg yolks, salt and maple syrup. Next add the Semolina and the butter and mix well, till properly combined.

Separately, using a hand mixer, whisk the egg whites.

Fold in the egg whites into the cheese mix. Cover it with plastic wrap and let it chill for at least one hour in the fridge.

After that, take the mix out of the fridge, bring to boil a large pot of water and roll small balls from the mix.

(Top tip: the mix will be very loose, sticky and runny so don't be discouraged. It should be exactly like that. Just make sure to wet your hands each time you roll a new ball. As soon as you drop one into the boiling water, wet your hands again and roll the next one).

Drop them all into the pot of boiling water and let them boil for 10 minutes. About 5 minutes into it they will start to float on top of the water - that is a good sign!

In the meantime, place a dash of butter into a frying pan. Let the butter melt, then add the breadcrumbs. Fry them for 3-5 minutes, mixing it constantly until brown.

When the cheese balls are ready, gently take them out of the boiling water and place them on a plate for a minute or two, so they can dry a bit.

Next, roll each ball in the fried breadcrumbs or as Balazs does it, sprinkle each ball with a good amount of fried breadcrumbs and set them aside.

Lastly, place the raspberries and the brown sugar into a small cooking pot and cook for a couple of minutes while mixing occasionally, until the sugar dissolve and the berries fall apart.

Eat your cheese balls with a hearty drizzle of the raspberry sauce. Best eaten the same day and still warm. Ta-dah!

P.S: Floating islands.
P.P.S: Joy from the world.

(Photos by exPress-o)

Jazzy Floors

Instead of looking up at the rather depressing grey skies today, let's get lost in dreamy floors instead! Davina has an eye for spotting pretty floors all around the world and those above make my heart literally skip a beat.

Which one is your favourite? I'm beyond smitten with the first pattern. You?

P.S: Also, stunning Parisian and Venetian floors...
P.P.S: Plus, this.

(Photos by Davina)


Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Right this moment, I should be answering emails but instead, I am sitting here and daydreaming about snacking on those apple slices totally covered with homemade cashew cocoa spread and topped with puffed quinoa.

Yup, the urge is so strong that I actually might get my coat on and pop by the corner store to get all the ingredients for it. If you feel the same, here is the how-to. Ready, steady, go...

In a food processor, combine 1.5 cups raw cashews, 1/4 cup almond milk, 3 tbsp cocoa powder, 3 tbsp maple syrup and 1/4 tsp salt. Spread on your apple slices and enjoy!

P.S: This crushed oreos and melted chocolate take looks pretty good too!
P.P.S: Plus, four super nifty apple tricks!

(Recipe originally by bon appétit. Photo by Sarah Tolzmann)

Bird's Eye View of Dubai's Highways

Wow! Have you ever been to Dubai?

If not, here is a tiny yet beautiful teaser of Dubai’s highways, swept over by desert sandstorms and shot beautifully by the brilliant Irenaeus Herok. I can’t get over the serenity of those images...

P.S: The nomad barber.
P.P.S: Hands at work.

(via Honestly, wtf)

Weekend Jollies

Friday, January 12, 2018

Cheers to the long weekend! Any fun plans on the horizon? This morning, our Jenny had a small procedure done. It all went well, so we will be spending the next three days hanging out with her on the sofa, watching films and making sure she gets tons of cuddles. Wishing everyone a cozy weekend, I'll see you back here on Tuesday morning, but before you start weekending, how about diving into those jazzy links below?

Why slowing down is the new speeding up...

The only way to keep your resolutions.

Memories of North Tonawanda snow...

Could you not spend any money for a year?


Six things to keep in your freezer at all times.

Mood boosters.

The 50 best podcasts of 2017. Which one did you like?

Self-employment mantra.

The joy of living within your means.


From dream to reality - amazing!

'I looked at my feet and walked past the man who had no idea that I was his son...'


'I tried a gratitude app for 30 days and this is what happened.'

Oh yes!

Brilliant home cooking tips.

And fancy a blast from the past?
- Seven years ago today.
- Six years ago today.
- Five years ago yesterday.
- Four years ago tomorrow.
- Three years ago today.
- Two year ago today.
- One year ago today.

P.S: How about a bit of chit-chat? Join me on InstagramFacebookTwitter and even Pinterest.

P.P.S: Sign up for your daily dose of exPress-o in your mailbox! (In the right side column).

(Photo via Daydreamer Girl)
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