Why Hygge?

Hygge (pronounced hoo-gah) is a relatively modern concept created by the Danes that I feel describes everything I love in a nutshell. That being togetherness, cosy interiors, comfort food and timeless fashion (especially in winter, so much easier right?)

Anyway, I digress… Hygge isn’t limited to Autumn/Winter. Picture this. You’re sat in the garden with your friends and family, drink in hand, the smell of BBQ food lingering in the air, music playing in the background with the sound of the fire pit crackling away. Bliss! Ah roll on the lighter warmer evenings. The other thing I love about nights like this are how it encourages togetherness (another important aspect of Hygge). I LOVE spending time with friends and family as much as possible. It makes me feel so content and making endless memories is just the best! I try to make a conscious effort to leave my phone in another room when at a social gathering (apart from to take pictures of course) but in doing this you can totally relax, switch off from virtual influences and simply take in the moment.

An event that stands out to me is when last year we celebrated an early Christmas with family. We rented out a gorgeous farmhouse locally and spent the entire weekend eating, drinking, chatting, playing games and laughed none stop. I was totally in my element. I arrived there straight from work on a rather gloomy December evening and there was Mulled wine warming on the AGA and fresh mince pies on the side begging me to eat them. DUH! It was heaven.

For a more in depth description of what Hygge is I can strongly recommend ‘The little book of Hygge’ by Miek Wiking. It is a great example of how to live well and is where I came to hear about this amazing approach. But for now here’s a checklist to help you get started.

Hygge checklist:

  • Candles candles candles
  • No stark lighting. Table lamps all the way
  • Build a little collection of the cosiest clothes for the days of doing nothing.
  • Put together a blanket basket to cosy up with
  • Put fresh flowers throughout the house
  • Cook from scratch (because there’s something so satisfying about it when it goes out)
  • Light the log fire/fire pit
  • Bake because ‘you can’t buy happiness but you can buy cake’. I will now live by this.
  • Fill your wardrobe with chunky knits and scarves
  • Drink copious amounts of tea and hot chocolate

 

I hope you enjoyed this little insight into my interpretation of Hygge. So for now, get into your cosiest clothes make and hot drink, stuff your face with Easter eggs surround yourself with candles (safety first)  and whack on a film (I’m sure there will be plenty of bank holiday treats over the next couple of days).

Happy Easter!

H x

Chicken Tray bake

Chicken Tray bake

It would only be right to start by sharing one of my favourite Jamie Oliver recipes since he’s already had a mention in my introductory blog. The very famous Chicken Tray Bake! This meal is so tasty, easy to throw together and requires little to no brain power (ideal after a long day at work). I have cooked it for the family  a couple of times and even tried it when hosting a small dinner party and it went down an absolute treat.

Serves 4 – 6

Ingredients

  •  A handful of fresh basil
  • 1 bulb of garlic
  • 1 handful of black olives
  • A small ciabatta loaf (torn).
  • 8 free-range chicken thighs or drumsticks
  • 2 handfuls of cherry tomatoes
  • olive oil
  • Chilli Flakes
  • 8 slices of higher-welfare pancetta or thin-sliced smoked streaky bacon

Method

  • Heat the oven to 180c.
  • Load the Chicken, Ciabatta, Olives, Tomatoes, basil and Garlic cloves into a baking tray that’s around 2.5 inches deep.
  • Sprinkle with Chilli flakes (dependent on how spicy you’d like it).
  • Drizzle generously with Olive oil and give it all a shake.
  • Finish by laying the pancetta on top.
  • Cook on the middle shelf for 50 minutes.
  • Serve with any veggies of you choice. I usually go for long stem broccoli.
Note

If you don’t want your pancetta or bacon all that crispy add this around 30 mins into cooking.

Get stuck in and enjoy!

H x