Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Hotter GORE-TEX Shoes

I was sent this pair of GORE-TEX Mist Hotter Shoes to review.

The blurb says that they combine the Hotter Comfort Concept with the practicality of GORE-TEX. This is spot on. From day one my shoes have kept my feet warm and dry. They are sturdy and comfortable.

I walk whenever I can, so recently that has meant walking on snow, ice, slush, through puddles and soggy leaves. I've been wearing my Hotter GORE-TEX shoes solidly for over a month and they still look like new. They fit me beautifully, it's like wearing slippers.

They're not bulky or heavy like my old walking boots, in fact these look like trainers poking out from under my jeans. I feel smart wearing them anywhere.

There are four women's shoes and boots in the GORE-TEX range. I'm happy with my selection, Mist at £74.

I now have a fantastic pair of sensible walking shoes that get me from home to playgroup via the park with ease. I like Hotter Shoes for their quality and comfort and I love that they are a Lancashire manufacturer too. 


Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Vertbaudet Children's Clothes

We were sent this fabulous reversible hooded top and a gorgeous shirt (see below) from Vertbaudet.

The hooded top (was £13, but is currently reduced to just £6 in the sale - BARGAIN) is lovely and warm and washes and tumble dries well. It has a reindeer design on one side and reverses to a plain bright red on the other. While I love this top and it looks great on my 3 year old son, I haven't reversed it as the washing instructions would be on show and I don't want to cut them out!

The poplin shirt (£13) makes my 2 year old son look so grown up and stylish. Again it washes and dries well and hasn't faded, although I wish it was self-ironing!

Vertbaudet sell fabulous Baby clothes, funky and functional Boys clothing and also a wide range of Maternity Clothes. 

I'm off to have a virtual rummage through the sale items!

Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Tefal Actifry

I was sent a Tefal Actifry to review. I'm not normally a kitchen gadget type of person, although I'd heard good things about this. I tend to try things once, find them too awkward to use or too difficult to clean and put them away in the garage. Not this baby. Oh no. I love the Tefal Actifry!

The Tefal Actifry cooks with hot air. You can cook a kilo of chips in just one spoonful of oil, so clearly this is healthier than deep-frying. The photograph above is of our first batch of chips half way through cooking. As you can see there is no condensation and, above all, no mess. You set it going and the paddle turns the food so it is evenly cooked.

What I love most about the Tefal Actifry is that is is mess-free. It comes apart easily after cooking and the lid, bowl, paddle and measuring spoon all go in the dishwasher. There's nothing else to clean.

What I also love is the way food tastes when it's cooked in the Tefal Actifry. Chips are crunchy on the outside and soft in the middle. Potato wedges are amazing, buttery and yummy. You can 'roast' new potatoes with herbs and garlic and they taste out of this world. You can cook all sorts of foods in the Tefal Actifry, not just potatoes (although it is exceedingly good at cooking potatoes). Today I cooked sausages, 8 chipolatas took just 12 minutes and there was no smell, no splattered grease and no mess. I'm going to try their recipe for bolognaise sauce next. The Tefal Actifry comes with a round-the-world recipe book. Some of the recipes are a bit random, but it gives you a good idea of what you can cook in it.

The only minor downside is it's a little noisy, but no noisier than the extractor fan.

Tefal Actifry Recipe for Potato wedges, Salmon and Courgettes
(I made this up, but don't let that put you off. You can see it's edible from the photograph above)!

Cut potatoes into wedges. Dry with a clean tea towel or kitchen roll.
Put the wedges in the Tefal Actifry with large pinches of sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, parsley and chilli flakes and 3/4 of a spoonful of vegetable oil (or oil of your choice).
Cook for 20 minutes.
Add one chopped courgette and 150ml of cold water.
Cook for a further 10 minutes.
Add chunks of salmon steak and the juice of one lemon.
Cook for a final 10 minutes.

That's it. One pot (that goes on the dishwasher), no pans, no mess. Delicious healthy food.

The Tefal Actifry is available from this list of stores. The RRP is £199.99, but you can currently buy it for £107.00. I wouldn't be without mine now.