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Amazing hampers at Lord’s

Amazing hampers at Lord’s

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Food and sport in England has historically been a fairly dismal partnership; greasy burgers of dubious origin and queues so long you miss half the match. However, there is a new era in England’s catering scene and Jamie is central to this with Fabulous Feasts.

Many events around the country have been tucking in to the public catering supplied by Fabulous Feasts, from guests being looked after at Henley Regatta to ice skating in Brighton; not to mention the upcoming public catering for footie fans at Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium.

But for now let’s concentrate on the amazing Fabulous Feasts takeover of the Food Village at the hallowed Lord’s Cricket Ground in West London.

I love Lord’s, I love cricket, but until now I’ve never really loved the food, not even liked it. This meant that my fellow cricketers and I would have to lug around cool-boxes on the train, struggling to fit them under the rather snug seating in the ground itself. It would be the usual Scotch eggs, sandwiches and cakes, with a ‘bit’ of booze as well.

The time seems right to shout about how good the food is now, with England about to take on the Aussies in the Second Ashes Test at Lord’s later this week. I went along to the New Zealand test with my fellow village players in May and was given one of each of their full-day hampers to test out.

The Food Village was buzzing, Fabulous Feasts now have all the stalls, each on a different theme – Mexican, steaks, curries, hot dogs and burgers among loads more to keep the hungry satisfied. The hampers were handed over and the four of us took our seats and yes, they fit beautifully underneath, out of the way until you get peckish.

And by the end of the first over, we were peckish. We opened the artfully presented cool bags and traditional wicker hampers and started eating with our eyes – let’s not forget that Fabulous Feasts follow the golden Jamie rule and make their food using the freshest ingredients possible.

Beautifully sweet almond croissants from the Flour Station were delicious and had kept in perfect straight-out-of-the-oven condition, slightly crisp on the outside and fluffy and buttery in the middle, despite the warmth and packaging. A fruit salad with granola and some Italian treats including bocconcini and sun-dried tomatoes were right off the bat. Beautiful.

Several overs later we were ready for lunch (after all this was a special occasion so a bit of indulgence goes with the territory) and out came the salads, tarts and sarnies.

Do you know what I’m just going to let the menu do the talking here….


  • ‘Black & blushing’ barbeque beef fillet with horseradish & celeriac ’slaw, smoky beets & a sour cream & chilli potato salad
  • Salmon, shrimp & Cornish crab cocktail with crunchy little gem, fregola & a fiery tomato, lime & mango salsa
  • English goat’s cheese tart with courgettes, tarragon & sun-blushed tomatoes (v)
  • Rustic summer ’slaw with crunchy seeds, mint, carrot & coriander (v)
  • Artisanal breads & cheesy straws from Jamie’s bakery, The Flour Station


  • Colombian single-origin chocolate & espresso mousse
  • Fresh black cherries

Let’s not forget that you also get a decent bottle of wine in the lower-priced hamper with a really good champers in the luxury version, so we cracked open the wine and let the really average cricket wash over us until tea.

Tea is a real treat, little finger sandwiches, including a Vegemite one for the Aussies (well at least they can enjoy the food), a classic cream tea and lemon drizzle cake and summer fruits. You could have a little of each or a whole one to yourself, really generous and decadent portions, I was definitely full, but very happy!

While it was one of the dullest days of Test cricket any of us had ever seen, the food helped make it memorable. And no, it’s not cheap, but shows really good value for money and quality in a place renowned for being over-priced and under-offering. Lord’s has changed so much for the better with this new era of food. So roll on the Ashes.

Leo Fenwick: Why Fenwick's New Collection Is Perfect For Christmas Treats

We have continued to work with our Artist in Residence, Julie Verhoeven, this year and she has created the Christmas design on the own brand packaging, bringing a more traditional look and feel to her playful illustrations.

We have developed a range working closely again with our local suppliers – our starting point is always British suppliers. Our loose festive tea has been blended for Fenwick and our coffee has been roasted for Fenwick, locally to our Newcastle store. We have expanded our range of preserves with delicious sweet and savoury products such as Cherry Amaretto Jam and Cranberry Vintage Port Sauce. We have also added a traditional Christmas pudding this year – perfect for enjoying with the family.

Your top pick from the collection?

The Boxing day Chutney is delicious! I love eating it with cold turkey for the days following christmas.

Why do you think hampers make such brilliant Christmas gifts?

Everyone loves receiving gifts of food and drink but when its packaged beautifully in a wicker basket it makes the perfect Christmas gift, whether it is for family, friends or a work colleague you don’t know so well. I particularly like that feeling of putting your hand inside the hamper, not knowing what goodies you will find amongst the wrapping – it’s like a second stocking on Christmas day.

We can only buy one thing from the collection, what should it be?

I do like the mince pies but they have to be eaten quickly.

Tell me about your English sparkling wine?

Produced for Fenwick in Appledore, Kent, our full-bodied vintage sparkling wine is a classic blend of chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. It is wonderfully bright and light, with aromas of honeyed citrus and white peach. Perfect for any celebration or even a cosy winter night at home.

Supporting local is huge right now, tell me about which local independents you’ve collaborated with on this new collection?

We like to keep that a secret but many of our local partners we have collaborated with also sell their own branded product in our food hall.

Anything you didn’t quite get round to releasing in this collection, that could be in the pipeline for the future?

We would really like to do a gourmet food and drink Advent Calendar next Christmas. We have lots of new products in development, launching in 2021 – watch this space.

Tell us what you’d usually do on Christmas Day.

I spend Christmas day with my family and we like to open gifts together on Christmas morning, which includes stockings for the dogs. This is followed by lunch with lots of crackers, joke sharing and a Christmas movie in the afternoon. Now I have two young nieces, Christmas is very much about them and they love getting ready for Santa's visit. Last year my eldest niece was keen to make sure we didn't light the fire so Santa could still make it down the chimney safely.

Your go-to Christmas movie?

Yorkshire puddings on Christmas dinner?

I am never one to say no to a Yorkshire pudding, but I prefer not with turkey at Christmas.

You know it’s Christmas when…?

Christmas officially arrives when we launch the Christmas windows in Newcastle. The team work so hard for this moment all year and it's amazing to see it all come together. With everything that’s happened this year, I think it’s a particularly important year to bring Christmas to the community with some festive cheer.

More from this category

Lincolnshire is to host its biggest ever networking event next week – alongside the Lincolnshire Show Online, and it is attracting huge interest and key speakers including The Black Farmer Wilfred Emmanuel-Jones.

The Lincolnshire Agricultural Society wish to recognise excellence in science and technology, the environment, land and business management - applications are open now!

Farmers Terry and Jane Tomlinson are celebrating 20 years of Redhill Farm Free Range Pork and this year’s Lincolnshire Show will mark their 20th year at the Show.

Open for Agri success – are you looking to start or develop your own business?

Lincolnshire Showground has announced an investment of over £800,000 in the renovation of its Exhibition Hall – now known as the EXO Centre - to create a contemporary and inclusive education and events facility for all.

On 6th April, Lincolnshire Showground will be the venue for “Elemental” – a world-first multi-sensory choir concert produced by local choir BeVox. BeVox’s musical director, Timothy Allen, gives a glimpse of the behind-the-scenes preparations for this unique event.

The latest in agricultural technology will be on show when Riseholme College near Lincoln launches its new Centre of Agri-Food Technology on Friday 25 June.

Our newest member of the team, Gemma King, joins our small but busy team as Marketing Executive.

How to Plan Your Perfect Picnic

Scott’s of Alnmouth
You’ll find all the picnic essentials at this this well-stocked deli-cum-café in the pretty coastal village of Alnmouth. Their special Scott’s Boxes are an obvious choice – packed, wrapped and ready to go for collection or delivery. Try The Best of Northumberland Box – filled with lots of local delicacies – or the Antipasti Box for the flavours of Europe. We’d suggest picking up a bottle of red from the deli to go alongside the latter.
Northumberland Street, Alnmouth NE66 2RS
07950 564963

Heather and Bale
Heather and Bale take the hassle out of picnics by packing their hampers to the brim with little luxuries from local producers. Their Harley Picnic Hamper is a modern take on the traditional picnic basket, packed with sweet and savoury treats. Their Middleton Hamper takes things up a notch with English sparkling wine, Fentiman’s sparkling elderflower, pâté, crispbreads, nuts and crisps to savour, and a box of Davenport Truffles.

Tully’s of Rothbury
This village store has a great deli packed with meats and cheese, and does a great range of homemade cakes so you can easily create your own delicious hamper from the vast choice of produce. Tully’s also do a great line in specialist foods, including wheat-free, gluten-free and dairy-free options which make putting together a picnic for all the family as easy as pie.
High Street, Rothbury NE65 7TB
01669 620574

Roots Farm Shop
As you would expect, this farm shop is packed with delicious produce perfect for packing into a picnic. Fresh bread is delivered daily, and you’ll find loads of Yorkshire cheese, locally-made jams and pickles, in-house-bakery goodies, and beer and wine to wash it all down with. They even do hamper boxes to pre-order if you want to get ahead on the picnic supplies.
East Rounton, Northallerton DL6 2LE
01609 882480

The Mockingbird Deli
This Yarm-based, Italian-style deli is filled with authentic Italian produce. Choose from a great menu offering ready-made sandwiches, delicious ciabattas, wraps and salads, or pick up one of their famous deli platters, with a couple of Italian pastries to round off your picnic.
High Street, Yarm TS15 9AE
01642 913357

Graze & Gorge
Order your own bespoke picnic box ready to pack into the car (or take into the garden) brimming with cheese, charcuterie, crackers, fruit, chutneys, and a myriad of sweet treats. The experts at Graze & Gorge will deliver your choice of luxury platter box – including one with their own take on afternoon tea (and fizz) – direct to your door.

Mainsgill Farm Shop
There’s a vast deli counter at this popular farm shop, stocked with everything you could want, and some things you might never have thought of. You’ll also find their award-winning bakery, and stacks of bottled beer, great wines and other locally-made produce for the perfect picnic, or you can pick up one of their ready-prepared platters which include the Tea Time Cake Collection – loads of their most popular cakes pre-arranged on a platter.
Richmond DL11 7PN
01325 718860

The Morpeth Larder
Expect to find everything you need at this well-stocked deli. Pick up local chutney, cheese, charcuterie and lots of freshly baked treats, and a range of wines and spirits with which to celebrate our new-found freedom, or pre-order one of their great hampers for a special picnic.
Sanderson Arcade, Morpeth NE61 1NS
01670 503302

Piercebridge Organics
One of the region’s most popular solely-organic food outlets, this farm shop stocks a huge range of home produced and locally made products (more than 2,000 in total), much of them sourced from the surrounding farms, and that includes anything and everything you might want, from fresh meat and dairy to flour, pulses, jams and veg. Pick up the prefect organic picnic spread and head to the hills to enjoy.
The Green, Piercebridge DL2 3SE
01325 374251

Black Olive Deli
Famous for its sausage rolls and homemade treats, this brilliant little deli on Darlington’s popular Grange Road is the place to pick up a delicious picnic, from fresh sandwiches to frangipane tarts, and we can’t wait for it to reopen so we can stock up. You can also pre-order one of their special hampers for a real picnic treat.
9 Grange Road, Darlington DL1 5NA
01325 464479

The Deli Around The Corner
Find a mix of homemade produce and the region’s best brands in this little deli tucked away in Tynemouth. All handpicked, they use only the best local suppliers, and the goodies here include delicious cheese, freshly-baked bread and pastries, charcuterie and freshly-prepared sandwiches to take to the beach.
61 Hotspur Street, Tynemouth NE30 4EE
0191 259 0086

Urban Terrace Kitchen Sunderland
From picnic-stalwart Scotch eggs and roast beef sandwiches, to sweet potato wedges, salad boxes and sourdough cake, find plenty to tempt you for your picnic at this friendly deli. With a menu crammed full of delicious-sounding dishes, including daily specials, this vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free friendly place is a great choice. The food is fresh, fun and healthy and arrives in convenient takeaway boxes. Oh, and they do great coffee too. (Check out their Facebook page for all the specials).
3 St Luke’s Terrace, Sunderland SR4 6NQ
07887 875825

The Best Picnic Spots

Hamsterley Forest
A great place to lose yourself, this is County Durham’s largest forest with loads of opportunities for wildlife watching as well as official mountain biking and walking trails through more than 2,000 hectares of forest, including The Loop, a tricky circuit featuring rock gardens and various obstacles – not for the casual cyclist. There’s a useful visitor’s centre and café but be warned you do have to pay for parking.
Hamsterley DL13 3NL

Allen Banks and Staward Gorge
The largest area of ancient woodland in Northumberland, this 250-hectare site is great for exploring, especially in spring as the area is home to a range of flora, fauna and fungi and is famous for its carpet of bluebells and wild garlic, which cover the woodland at this time of year. If you are lucky you’ll spot red squirrels amongst the trees, and the Morralee Tarn walk is great for spotting wildlife all year round.
Hexham NE47 7BP

Cawfields Quarry
Where Hadrian’s Wall hangs on the very edge of the Whin Sill, this dramatic stretch of the wall is one of the highest standing sections which remains. Cawfields car park is a good place to start your walk to the impressive Milecastle 42, which was built by the Second Legion to protect what they saw as a weak spot at the aptly-named Hole Gap. The much-photographed quarry lake is teeming with wildlife and there are plenty of sheltered places to picnic beside the water.
Milecastle, Haltwhistle NE49 9NN

Low Barns Nature Reserve
Originally farmland, this wetland reserve bordered by the River Wear was redeveloped by Durham Wildlife Trust to create the popular nature reserve which is now a Site of Specific Interest. Its three lakes and interconnecting streams, ponds, roadbeds and wet pastureland play host to dragonflies, frogs and newts, and the most patient nature lovers may see otters, kingfishers, foxes, roe deer and stoat. Dogs are welcome (on a lead) and there is ample car parking, a visitor’s centre, café and designated picnic area.
Bishop Auckland DL14 0AG

Birdoswald Roman Fort
Birdoswald is the best place to see the longest still-standing stretch of Hadrian’s Wall and the fort, which is one of the best preserved of the 16 along the wall, is considered to be one of the most picturesque settings along its 73-mile length. It is also the only site where evidence of significant occupation in the post-Roman period has been found. High above the River Irthing, the Roman fort, turret and milecastle are all visible from this lofty viewpoint, and there are plenty of places to picnic here, from the Victorian Courtyard to the Southern Gatehouse viewpoint. You can explore the outside of the fort and learn about Roman life at the visitor centre.
Gilsland, Brampton CA8 7DD

Druridge Bay Country Park
The wide stretch of sandy beach here, which stretches from Amble to Cresswell, is hugely popular for walkers (and birdwatchers) and it is easy to see why, but the Country Park itself is made up of a network of paths through the dunes and meadowland which make up several nature reserves, and there’s a 100-acre lake where you can windsurf or sail. With so much space there’s plenty of choice when it comes to places to picnic, so whether you want sand with your sandwiches or not is up to you.
Red Row, Druridge Bay NE61 5BX

Malton Picnic Area
The wooded riverside path follows the River Browney in this pretty spot just east of Lanchester in County Durham, close to Malton Nature Reserve. There’s an easy circular walking route through a wildflower meadow and an area of wet woodland which is listed as a rare habitat, whilst the riverbank itself is an ideal place to spot kingfishers, dipper, tree creeper and other wildlife. There is a designated picnic area here and plenty of spaces along the river path to stop and enjoy the beauty of your surroundings.
Lanchester DH7 0TH

Preston Park Museum and Grounds
In the heart of Eaglescliffe, this revamped area is close to Middlesbrough yet it still feels a million miles away. The vast grounds and a nature reserve are within easy reach for many, and there’s loads to do here to work up an appetite – from exploring the grounds, to the new children’s adventure play area and the Victorian walled kitchen garden. Head to the Quarry Wood Nature Reserve to seek out a more tranquil picnic spot.
Yarm Road, Eaglescliffe TS18 3RH

Bakethin Nature Reserve
Bakethin, at the northern end of Kielder Water, is a well known haven for wildlife covering 140 hectares of land. Paths lead through the woods to the historic viaduct, Kielder Castle and the Salmon Centre, and to the waterside where visitors are often greeted by tufted ducks, goldeneye, goosander and mallards. Seeing the wildlife on the water has become even easier since the addition of a viewing hide which allows you a unique waterside viewpoint. There’s an information point and seating beside the main car park, or picnic in the forest clearing where the kids can explore the bug hotel and bug periscope.
Kielder Reservoir, Butteryhaugh Bridge NE48 1HF

Guisborough Forest
On the edge of the National Park, this is a mosaic of different habitats woodlands, wetlands and grassland, all home to abundant wildlife. There are two play areas, a fun trim trail, a sculpture trail and plenty of mapped walks and bike trails to keep you busy. There is a visitor centre, plenty of parking, a café and picnic area too, but you can easily get away from the popular spots to find quieter places to enjoy your picnic.
Pinchinthorpe, Guisborough TS14 8HD

We are all keen to get back out and explore our amazing countryside but it is important that we all follow The Countryside Code. Please do your bit and don’t leave a mess behind. The codes includes:

Yorkshire's Michelin-standard pop-up serving lunch on the go

For many, Frances Atkins and fine Yorkshire food go hand in hand. The former owner and (more recently) head chef of The Yorke Arms was awarded her first Michelin star in 2003, which at the time made her Britain’s first female Michelin-starred chef.

More recently, however, national and local lockdowns have changed the way we eat out, and as a result the hospitality industry has suffered. The Yorke Arms was one of many restaurants forced to diversify – the former Michelin-starred, ivy-clad coaching inn is now a venue for hire – and as a result, in August, Frances set up Paradise Foods, alongside John Tullett and Roger Oliver, two of her former colleagues. The venture offers a combination of bespoke seasonal hampers, private dining and food-to- go – from a converted Airstream stationed at Daleside Nursery in Killinghall.

Although it sees Frances at the helm of an entirely different kitchen, her love for fresh, British produce still evidently shines through. Whilst many restaurateurs are apprehensive in these testing times, Frances’ enthusiasm for creating an exciting and relevant way to enjoy good food is undimmed.

Tell me about your relationship with food. Did you know from a young age that you wanted to work within the food industry?
I’ve been one of those very fortunate people, I’ve never had a problem with knowing what I wanted to do when I left school, or indeed, well before that. I’ve always enjoyed cooking. I say this all the time, but when I was about eight or nine, I started a café in my front garden.

What are your thoughts on the food industry now?
I’ve seen a lot of change, and we’re in very exciting times now. Because of Covid-19 and Brexit, and with people more concerned about their health, food is changing. Although I think hospitality has been hit very hard, a lot of positive and exciting things will come out of it. I feel versatility in our business is the name of the game. This is a time for us (and we won’t have a lot of choice about it) to concentrate on using British produce. Tasty, nutritional and fun food is what I hope is going to be the result, and that’s what we’re doing [with Paradise Foods] – two of my former colleagues and myself. We’ve bought our wagon because it’s cost effective for us at the moment, and we’re hoping we can spread the word, as well as enjoy what we’re doing.

You’ve been in the industry a long time. Is this one of the biggest changes you’ve seen?
Definitely. Never before has there been a world pandemic, and of course, we’re leaving the EU, which means we’re not going to have all of these great, different foods coming in from miles away. We’re going to have to be self-sufficient and use our own. I take the positive view about it I think now is the time for people to get creative – British produce has diversity and quality.

Do you think you always intended to move on from The Yorke Arms to something new at some point?
Yes, I am never going to stop working. I was born to cook, and I love to cook, I’ll not stop for as long as I’m allowed to. I don’t think it was my intention, but circumstances happened and that’s life. You have to take the positive view.

It was lockdown that prompted the end of your time at the Yorke Arms – how did you find that?
The beauty of being a chef is that you’re always onto your next dish. You’re always looking for something new, something different. There comes a time in all of our lives, when you know it’s time to move on – and time to go back to basics. Very fortunately I had two colleagues – one I’d worked with for 20 years and one for 30 – and we decided now was the time to start again together.

You don’t like using the term takeaway. How do you like to describe Paradise Foods?
We produce two things food on-the-go, which is great, fresh food that’s made to order, using good British produce. We also do hampers – they’re for that special dinner at home – that you just have to warm in the oven. It’s better than a takeaway – it’s skilled food, beautifully presented, but the work is done for you. A takeaway, for me, is maybe a burger, while this is food that’s designed to be good for you, for you to enjoy. A long time ago, at The Yorke Arms, we were one of the first people to start ‘restaurants with rooms.’ At the time, there wasn’t even a category for that in any of the guides, we were one of the first. We were a leader, and I hope we’re doing the same thing now with our food on-the-go.

What kind of thing can we see on the menu?
One of the most popular dishes is crispy duck with our own relishes and fresh raw vegetables. We have seasonal turkey, chestnut and cranberry wraps at the moment too. We have our own cured salmon with shrimps and compressed cucumber and turmeric jelly, and quince, almond and chocolate tarts. We pride ourselves on saying that you could eat from our wagon all the time, and always have something different and something fresh.

What do you make in-house?
We make everything – we buy nothing in. We make our own tomato sauce, ketchup, pestos, herb relishes, apple relishes. If you come and have breakfast with us, we smoke our own sausages and serve them in our own sourdough rolls. I’m very fussy about sourdough, it can sometimes taste too sour and fermented. We make our starters from apple ferment, so it’s a gentle starter and therefore our bread is also a bit special!

Just a few months in, how do you feel about Paradise Foods so far?
It’s been good. We opened in August. At that time, we were boiling hot, now we’re freezing cold. It’s just a question of layers! It’s a great experience, and something that’s different. The nicest thing is when people come back and say I really enjoyed that, thank you very much. We’re a humble wagon, and that’s very nice to know. Hopefully, we’ll progress into next year and the food will become more exciting. I’m very much looking forward to it.

Favourite ingredient?
A good rock salt, it draws out the flavour from things – used responsibly of course.

Last supper?
Some great bread, really super bread, and savoury butter.

The next place on your list to visit for a really amazing meal?
That’s a big question, I want to go to so many places. I’d like to go to Heckfield Place – I love their ethos and philosophy. I think Syke Gyngell is a great chef.

Favourite way to spend a day off?
Walking on the hills with my dogs.

If you're looking to spoil the mom, grandmother, aunt, wife, or special person in your life this Mother's Day, look no further than this collection of cake and cupcake recipes. There's something here for every personality and every taste, with one underlying theme: Each and every one of these confections is a fit for a queen.

Some are bursting with that spring feeling, incorporating in-season rhubarb or strawberries, such as the Vanilla Sponge Cake with Strawberry Meringue Buttercream that's pictured here. Others have a floral theme, such as sunflower cupcakes where piped buttercream forms the petals and chocolate-covered sunflower seeds create the centers.

Bright, fresh citrus is on splendid display in these recipes, too. Lemon lovers will find loads of options, from a lemon-meringue sheet cake with a dramatic presentation to a lemon crunch cake, in which a tender, lemony butter cake is topped with a crisp, crunchy, crackling shell. There's also a fantastic lemon snack cake that has a cream cheese frosting enhanced with ground freeze-dried raspberries, which gives it a beautiful rosy tint that any mom would love. There's also an orange-and-poppy-seed sheet cake that brims with citrus flavor, as well as lime-scented margarita cupcakes are basically the dessert equivalent of the classic cocktail.

Richer offerings pop up, too, such as a fun spin on carrot cake that incorporates elements of a traditional Southern hummingbird cake and a crepe cake (think: big stack of homemade crepes layered with two different whipped-cream fillings&mdashwhite chocolate-raspberry and dark chocolate-hazelnut). Mom won't be able to say no to a slice of that!

Along with a bouquet of Mom's favorite flower and a heartfelt card, any of these sweet treats are sure to put a smile on her face.

20 Delicious Finger Sandwiches Perfect For Afternoon Tea

Whip these sweet and savory sandwiches up for Mother's Day.

The only thing better than sipping on a glass of your favorite tea? Pairing it with a sweet or savory sandwich.

There's nothing better than a classic! These mini sandwiches, topped with ranch spread and cucumbers are no exception.

Enjoy your go-to sandwich in bite-sized form by serving tomato, mayonnaise, lettuce, and bacon between soft biscuits.

Satisfy your sweet tooth with this delicious and creative take on strawberry shortcake.

These sandwiches may be small in size, but thanks to sharp cheddar cheese, cayenne pepper, and horseradish, they're certainly big on flavor.

Garnish your toast with smoked salmon for an easy-to-make treat that will bring a rich touch to teatime.

Egg salad with chives and pepper receives a colorful makeover served on pink-swirled bread.

Bring some crunch to afternoon tea with toast stacked with tasty radishes.

This recipe starts with cheddar biscuits and ends with your party guests asking for seconds&mdasheven thirds!

If you're looking for something a little more filling to accompany afternoon tea, make these triple-decker sandwiches that are stuffed to the max with delicious layers of pastrami, swiss cheese, and sauerkraut.

  1. vegan wine or champagne (or any vegan non-alcoholic soft drinks)
  2. premium tea/coffee (fair trade!)
  3. vegan chocolate and snacks
  4. tea biscuits
  5. organic fresh fruit
  6. dried fruit
  7. nuts and seeds
  8. canned gourmet food (unique jams, olives, artichokes…etc.)
  9. fresh herbs in a pot (basil, mint…etc.)
  10. culinary rosewater or lavender
  11. vegan cookbook
  12. vegan beauty items (cruelty-free!)

1. Artisan British Gift Basket

Who’s up for a wicker hamper full of locally sourced British luxury delights? I am! It’s packed with snacks and sweet treats, all recipients of the Great Taste award.

As a snack aficionado, I’d start with the salt and sweet popcorn and, honestly, I probably wouldn’t share. Then, I’d sit back and enjoy a few rosemary and garlic olives while I plundered the rest of the basket.

This gift would be an ideal way to say congratulations or to celebrate an important milestone like a promotion.

2. Italian Dinner for 2 Gift Basket

  • Price: $47

Italian anyone? This basket has all of the makings for a cozy and romantic dinner. The diners will begin with a breadstick and olive appetizer and they’ll finish with a choice of two different sauces for their shell-shaped pasta.

Frankly, I can’t resist a pesto sauce, so after I’d polished off the olives, I’d be diving into some pasta pesto. There’s even two bottles of Italian lemonade to wash everything down.

This basket is perfect for a wedding or anniversary present or for that special someone on Valentine’s day.

3. Valentine Gift Basket

Will I be your valentine? Absolutely, if I can get my hands on this yummy basket. Filled with vegan-friendly treats, both sweet and savory, it’ll spark adoration and a delicious taste sensation.

My favorites would be the popcorn and the Bombay mix, but I’m a sucker for anything crunchy. What romantic basket would be complete without some decadent organic dark chocolate?

This basket would make a perfect romantic gift for any special someone but it would also be great for a vegan who needs a little extra love.

4. Eco Friendly Canadian Gift Basket

The environmentally conscious need snacks too! For sweet and nutty treats, you can’t beat this Canadian gift basket. Inside you’ll find brittles, gourmet chips, crackers, nuts and coffee — all responsibility produced.

I don’t know about you, but I have yet to find a nut brittle that doesn’t speak to me, and I’m sure the Espresso Peanut Brittle and Chai Latte Brittle will be no different.

This basket is perfect for graduates, as a care package or just to send to someone who needs a little surprise in their life.

5. Care Package Gift Basket

Not everyone has the time to jet off to the spa for a relaxing day of self-care — so what’s the solution? Here’s a spa day in gift basket form! Light that candle and enjoy silky lotions, rejuvenating creams, bath salts, a body scrub and so much more.

After I replenish my skin with lotion rub down, I’m putting those cozy socks and kicking back.

This basket would be a perfect gift for your girlfriends, sisters, new moms, mother’s day, or for anybody who has been super stressed out.

6. Organic Fruit Gift Basket

One thing I’ve learned in life — you will never go wrong sending the gift of fruit. Ideal for any occasion, this wire basket with a removable lid contains some of the finest organic pears, apples, oranges and grapefruit.

Me? I’m going for those pears. Cut them up and eat them as is or make a delicious pear tart to wow the relatives.

Whether for a thank you gift basket or if you just want to show someone you’re thinking of them, fruit baskets are a win-win.

7. Dried Fruits and Nuts Gift Basket

Do you know someone who loves to entertain? This gift basket is a dried fruit and nut bonanza with enough delicious goodies to keep even the most raucous crowd at bay.

It may just be me, but I adore a gift basket that has ready-made food I can put out and feed to my guests.

Dates and apricots are my favorites, but frankly I’m up for anything in this basket. So for the holidays or any time of year, this basket is a winner.

8. Five Minute Meals Gift Basket

A gift basket with a variety of five minute meals? I may order this one for myself. It’s got pastas, sauces and risotto mixes made from ethically sourced and sustainably farmed ingredients.

Best of all, the contents will ensure that you’ll have several fast, gourmet meals that no one will complain about. I’m all about that porcini risotto or maybe I’d make a sauce with the passata for the tortiglioni.

This would be an ideal basket for an anniversary gift or even as a foodie’s birthday present.

9. Eco Pampering Gift Basket

Ah, who wouldn’t rejoice at a box arriving on their doorstep with everything needed for an extravaganza of self-care. This box has it all — soap, a sponge and towel, a foot stone and even a candle to create that perfect mood.

Give me that botanical bath infusion, Mama, and I’ll be just fine.

If you have a girlfriend, sister or know a new mother or would just like to thank your own mother for all that she does, this would be the perfect reward.

10. Italian Dinner Gift Basket #2

Dim the lights, light a candle and get ready for an Italian meal for two. This gift basket has everything required to turn a boring weeknight into an enchanted evening in Italy.

I’ll start with the olive and sourdough crackers, thank you very much. Then I’ll help myself to some pistachio pesto pasta. The coolest thing in the box, however, might just be that bunch of dried oregano.

This is a perfect gift for newlyweds or for any couple who loves vegan Italian food.

11. Wine Lover’s Gift Basket

Attention wine lovers! This gift basket is tailor made for anyone who loves to nibble on gourmet vegan munchies while sipping on a fine glass of wine.

Popcorn, olives, dried fruit and chocolate chip cookies are just the beginning for the fortunate recipient of this basket. I’m not sure which wine I’d open first but I’m definitely going for that dark chocolate.

This gift basket would be a perfect way to say thank you or would make a fantastic house warming gift.

12. Gourmet Gift Basket with Cookbook

This basket is a gourmet snacker’s delight. It has a little bit of everything including tea, olives and almonds just to name a few.

It also comes with a vegan cook book — a fantastic way to show the vegan in your life that you’re on board with their life choices. I know I’d snap up that tomato and artichoke bruschetta spread first thing.

I can imagine this basket being perfect as a care package for someone in a new apartment or to celebrate a friend-iversary.

13. Meat Subtitutes Gift Basket

Has someone in your life recently dipped their toes into the vegan lifestyle? If so, this gift basket would be a perfect introduction to the many meatless possibilities in the vegan universe.

Inside they’ll find a variety of all natural vegan steaks, jerky, bouillon cubes, recipe cards and more. If someone sent me this, I’d dive right on into one of those teriyaki primal strips. Yum!

So for recent vegan converts or if you just want to tell a vegan you love them, this basket is a must-send.

14. The Ultimate Foodie Gift Basket

Is there a foodie in your life who is all about organic products? This hamper has a little bit of every crave-able treat a hungry person could desire.

From popcorn to nut butter, someone will have a ball digging through this hamper to find their favorite thing. I know I’d be looking for the chocolate chip macaroons and the sourdough crisp bread.

I can see sending this to someone as a birthday present, a holiday gift or just to say hey, I thought you might be hungry.

15. Italian Food Lover’s Gift Basket

Fair warning — you’ll need to keep this gift basket hidden from non-vegans. It’s an Italian-inspired jackpot that has 11 tasty and tempting items.

As an appetizer, have wine knot crackers, almonds and spicy olives. Then you’ll get cooking with the preserved lemons, risotto and pasta. And I’ve got my eye on you, cherry jam and you, orange slice marmalade.

As a perfect house warming present for a foodie friend, or as a wedding present for the couple who loves to cook, this basket rocks.

And he smiled and said, “The National Anthem.”

Happy 5th Birthday, sweet Jet.

Your life might have ushered in the hardest season I have ever faced, but your life also gave me the best season I have ever faced.

It was the best because it gave us YOU. But it was also the best because we got to witness what the Lord did in us and through us and in spite of us, and through the precious people of God. Jet, your life is a TESTIMONY of God’s faithfulness.


'I had a few things running through my head, particularly where I got hit, just a bit of past came up - if you know what I mean - from a few years ago,' Smith told AdelaideNow, referring to the day Hughes was struck and died in a Sheffield Shield match between New South Wales and South Australia.

'That was probably the first thing I thought about, then I was like "I'm OK here" and I was alright.'

Smith slumped onto the floor after the rapid Archer effort made contact, with the cricket world instantly holding its breath as he lay motionless.

Fellow Australian Philip Hughes tragically died in similar circumstances in November 2014

Hit in the same part of the neck, Hughes died from a hemorrhage caused by a burst artery

Team-mates quickly hurried to his side, as Smith began to stir and eventually left the field of play.

Giving more details for the first time since the incident, Smith has outlined how he felt in the immediate aftermath.

'I was a little bit sad but I was alright mentally for the rest of that afternoon,' he said. 'I felt pretty good, passed all my tests and was able to go and bat and then it wasn't until later that evening that it hit me.

'When the doc asked me what did it feel like I said it felt like I had six beers last night and felt a little but under the weather - without the six beers unfortunately.

'That was the sort of feeling I got, that groggy feeling and that stuck around for a couple of days.'

Archer had started to bowl even faster after noticing that Smith was struggling with the pace

Upon his comeback Smith won't be wearing a stem guard by choice, despite the accident

Upon his comeback, Smith won't be wearing a stem guard by choice, because of the 'claustrophobic' feelings it gives him.

'I tried them the other day when I was batting and I reckon my heart rate went up about 30 or 40 straight away,' Smith admitted.

'I just feel claustrophobic. I compare it to being stuck in an MRI scan machine.

'It was different, but I think at some point they're probably going to become mandatory so I'm going to have to get used to them.'

Smith has scores of 144, 142 and 92 in the series - his first since returning from a 12-month ban from cricket and will test his fitness in a tour match against Derbyshire on Friday.

The 30-year-old generally appears to have recovered from the concussion caused by Archer's bouncer, and remains in contention for the next Test at Old Trafford.

25 Christmas Dinners for Two That Are Simple and Stress-Free

These meals don't require endless ingredients &mdash but they feel luxe for a festive night in.

Regardless of your usual holiday traditions, there's a good chance you're staying home for Christmas this year. And like other holidays in 2020, eating out may be out of the question during the coronavirus pandemic, which is why you're looking to make an intimate feast for you and your loved ones at home. Creating a festive menu for you and your partner, or a family member (and even a roomie!), can be done without breaking the bank, or spending all of Christmas toiling away in the kitchen.

Nothing beats the intimacy and warmth of a festive dinner for two, especially when the meal is an impressive step up from your standard weeknight dinners. Of course, the one downfall of trying to create a holiday feast for two is ending up with way more food than you need. Or putting in more labor than you want (or have) to. So to help you settle on a main dish that&rsquos more to scale, here are easy-to-prep Christmas dinner recipes &mdash from the tried-and-true to one-pan wonders &mdash that are ideal for a perfect pair.