My best gluten-free dairy-free chocolate cake to date

So, apparently I am to give up all things gluten-ous (is that a word?) for good... or face a life of stomach pain and other ailments... Gulp. I am not even going to bore you on how that is a genetically impossible thing for me to achieve: as a Moroccan, my system reaches a state of disfunction if I don't eat bread, it just is. But my issue is this: I have been looking for alternatives to proper bread in London but so far I have failed miserably (if you do know of a good GF bakery, please let me know!) In the meanwhile, I have done a lot of work on some of my usual recipes to make them not just gluten-free, but also free of refined sugar and, when possible, dairy-free. Let me tell you, some of this "research work" has had disastrous totally inedible results.

That said, I'm quite happy of my chocolate cake. Beware though: this isn't either low-fat or low-sugar, instead it is a super indulgent way of approaching tea time if you are trying to eat things which are good for you. So, if you want a low calorie option, this isn't it (I'm not sure anything on my page is ever...), but if you want a deliciously moist alternative to a proper chocolate cake, this is it!


TLP fashion edit: Three go-to brands for Spring-Summer party emergencies

We all have them... You get an invitation, assume for weeks that you will be using one of your old dresses, but as the date approaches, well, you realise you would really really like a new dress. Just one of life's normal emergencies, right? (Please don't burst my bubble and tell me that I'm the only one...)


Spring style for fresh beginnings

I love a day like today. The new season brings sunshine and the fresh crisp air makes me yearn for new beginnings, which is exactly what is ahead  for me... more details soon I promise!

By way of a teaser, before we dive into the sartorial aspects of this post, I am thinking I better make the best of these defined changes of season during the last few days here because, where we are headed, it is seemingly pretty same same all year round (same same as in warm and sunny, thank you very much!) Anyways... I'm sure I'll be back to the Northern Hemisphere during my travels, at least to see the fiery colours of my beloved Autumn.


TLP beauty essential: Five all natural must-haves to survive that long-haul flight

I'll be honest, I don't know how some celebrities get papped after transatlantic flights looking like they have just spent a day at a spa, maybe it is a combo of First Class flying (sleep... that is the secret... obviously easier on a fluffy flat bed than cramped between two party animals in 34B) and a couple of carry-on suitcases filled with everything required to be glammed up by their squad in the arrivals lounge? In any case, what I do know is that not all of us are lucky enough to fly in such luxurious conditions, but I am very much one of those people who prefers not to resemble a zombie at passport control.


The outfit post where I finally showcase my favourite top

I know, I shouldn't have favourites, I should love all my clothes the same... But what can I do, I'm very susceptible to style and detail, and hence whilst I do have clothes which I profoundly dislike (thinking about my old lady suits which are reserved for very senior meetings) and others which make my heart sing.


Zen and flow at The Power Yoga Company

Before we start: I am not a yogi. I find it very hard to focus my mind and keep it from wandering to my to do lists, memories or just generally random thoughts. I cringe a little bit at Ommms (or however that thing is written...) and sometimes I get distracted if the class is too crowded and I am too close to my neighbours. My  body struggles with many poses, especially as my legs are hyper extended so anything that has me holding them locked for more than a few breaths gets very painful. And I face plant, a lot, especially in crow, and I am pretty sure my attempts at dolphin should be renamed seal pose.

Ok, now that we had this reality check, let me tell you how I came to become a regular at The Power Yoga Company


TLP foodie notes: Brunch at The Breakfast Club

It's Saturday... Hopefully you are out and about, maybe having a sweaty work-out to kick off the week-end, or like most parents you have put on your driver's cap and you are chauffeur-ing your glorious offspring to their various activities, birthday parties, playdates... In any case I hope you aren't working, and that you have put these two days aside to indulge in some lovely fresh food, preferably eaten lazily around a table with friends and not at your desk as per usual, although a TV dinner watching a movie also sounds dreamy...


TLP fashion edit: The spring refresh

Yes... I know... In many places it still feels too cold to even dream about Spring fashion, but with 10 days to go you better start believing it: the warm days are coming! For me most definitely a bit quicker than for most it would seem (more on that in a few weeks... stay tuned) but nonetheless, dear fellow fashionistas, it's time to think about fresh hues, new magical sandals, and of course the indispensable Spring trench, a must-have in most places in the Northern hemisphere...

As you may have guessed over the years I tend to build most of my outfits from the shoes up, and the same applies to some of my fashion edits it would seem.


A week of yoga, beach life, cocktails and TLC in Tulum

Warning... this post is a little photo heavy, mainly because everything in Tulum is perfect Instagram material, but also because I had an amazing time and I really hope I manage to do it all justice with my summary.. Inspired by my friend L. who had just spent part of her gardening leave in this boho paradise, I went to Tulum in search of a bit of  me time and a lot of zen. To say that I found much more sounds trivial, but it is a major understatement... (also, all of  the places I'm quoting here are linked directly so there isn't a contact list in the end, just click the links x)


Press reset and choose happy

I have been taking a break from the blog. Duh, it's been months since my last post so I guess most of you have figured that out and probably moved on to far more interesting blogs since I've literally disappeared. I don't blame you. In short, in the last few months I have been through a great deal on many fronts, and I only had so much energy for so many things at once. Plus, you know me, I don't like to come here to moan about my life or my health so why bother you with that.

I am now ready to take up writing again, especially as I have missed my friends here and I feel like I'm finally looking at things from the bright side. Yes, the bright side. That's my big change for 2017. Not a resolution, no, more a new life mantra.


Thank you Isabel Marant for making the ultimate racing ballerinas!

Doing the school run more regularly is quite new for me, seeing as I just spent the last five years missing 99% of school related activities for my eldest, but with everything going on in my life at the moment I still find myself racing everywhere: work-outs, meetings, doctor appointments, workshops, lunches, kids activities, playdates... phew! I get particularly pressed for time around the school run... and especially in the afternoon where I am usually racing back to West London from the City or Mayfair... do you have the same problem?


TLP foodie notes: My doughnut class at Bread Ahead

Before we begin... I blame it all on Instagram. My feed keeps popping up with beautiful pictures: Ukrainian style peasant blouses, layered chia seed topped smoothies, gorgeous smooth suede over-the-knee boots, and of course these delicious looking sugar bombs... The filled doughnuts by notorious Borough Market bakery Bread Ahead. Lately I've been spending more time discovering things to do and try in my adopted city, and so obviously I planned to go down to the market to try these, which are evidently totally outside my recommended macros etc etc, but girls like contradictions right?


TLP beauty essential: Make-up in berry, roseblood, and dusty rose tones

Do you change your make-up with the seasons? Like many, I always use a more transparent lighter foundation during the Summer, but I also tend to switch my colours around depending on the season... For me, Autumn means storing (or throwing away, depending on the shelf life) the corals, bright pinks and other summery tones in favour of a mix of deeper shades of berries and nudes.


My top five tips for a healthy lifestyle

A few months ago, having just recovered from quite a complicated pregnancy which had me crippled by diabetes and other conditions, all the while working and travelling full time, and continuing to do so whilst supposedly on maternity leave, I felt totally depleted of energy and totally out of shape. I decided it was time to take charge of my health and turn things around... Whereas I would have relished a quick fix solution, the reality is that when you combine a stressful life with health issues, there is no easy way to get better.

Thankfully though, I didn't know that at the time...


Out to the farmers market in my camo jacket

As I write this post I am doing a little celebratory dance in my head (or maybe not just in my head, but then again I am not sure I want to admit to this advanced state of crazy...) to welcome the first day of Autumn... I am so looking forward to days spent lazily strolling around London's parks with their fiery colours and crispy leaves breaking under my feet, the casserole dishes I'll cook up for friends and family, and of course new season fashion (you were waiting for this one, admit it). Last Sunday we got a little preview of Autumn with a slightly colder day than usual, so let's consider this my first outfit post for the new season...