Flavours and Flair

Monthly Archive: March 2015



March 2015




Written by , Posted in People


Clare Grove is the stylish author and illustrator of My Mummy Loves Shoes and My Mummy Loves Bags.

These fabulous books are perfect for every chic mum and her mini-me, as Clare takes her readers on a lovely journey through mummy’s fashionable collection of footwear and handbags.

Ladies, think Manolo’s, Jimmy Choo’s, Miu Miu, Chanel and Prada- to name a few!

As you turn each page of her exquisite books, you are guaranteed to find magical and charming illustrations that will capture the eyes and imagination of every girl- both young and old.

Today Clare chats to us about her wonderful work and her life in Auckland- where she has been living with her husband and three children for the last 8 years.

She also reveals her favourite spots around this beautiful city- that has so much to offer in terms of delightful food, fashion, art and culture.


ML&S: How long have you been living in Auckland?

Clare: My husband and I moved to Auckland from London eight years ago, when our first daughter was eighteen months old.

ML&S: Can you please describe your life in Auckland?

Clare: We are based in Herne Bay, Auckland and have three children, Sienna- 9, Annabel- 6, Ben- 3, and two pet rabbits, Stripe and Gomez. I work from home as an illustrator. The children are my first priority but writing and illustrating provides me with the balance I need and keeps me sane!


ML&S: Can you tell us about your work as an author and illustrator?

Clare: I worked in fashion and as an artist/illustrator in London. When my daughter came along, work took a back seat. There’s been a real sense of achievement getting back to what I love doing.


ML&S: Tell us about your fab books My Mummy Loves Shoes and My Mummy Loves Bags.

Clare: I had always dreamed of writing and illustrating my own children’s book. I wanted to create a stylish book that mothers could enjoy reading with their children. I have memories from my childhood of beautifully illustrated books and these images have always stayed in my mind. I decided to self-publish, which has been a great learning experience.


ML&S: What is your favourite family park in Auckland?

Clare: There are so many amazing child-friendly parks, however the children’s favourite would have to be the playground at Mission Bay. We’ve been going there since we moved to NZ. It’s right on the beach and has a fountain, the kids love jumping in during the hot summer months. There’s also an all year round ice-cream van, which works wonders in providing the children with a bribe when it’s time to go home.


ML&S: What are your top children’s stores in Auckland?

Clare: If clothes are needed for a special occasion, I’ll look in Smith & Caughys. Country Road and Witchery also do lovely children’s clothes.

ML&S: Where do you like to shop for yourself?

Clare: I love to mix high street fashion with designer pieces. My favourite high street shops are Country Road, Trenery and Esprit. For designer boutique shopping, I’ll head to Karen Walker, Muse and Runway in Newmarket.


ML&S: What do you love doing most with your family on weekends?

Clare: People close to me will chuckle at this but I’ve started going on bike rides with the family on the weekends. There’s a fantastic new wooden promenade that’s just opened down by the marina. The best part about going on these bike rides is I always know I can get a glass of wine at the end of it- in the lively seafood restaurant Swashbucklers.

ML&S: What is your favourite restaurant to eat with your little ones?

Clare: We’ll often go to Prego on Ponsonby Road for early evening meals with the kids- they are very child friendly and don’t even blink an eye when the sound of a broken glass or tantrum fills the air.


ML&S: For a date night with hubby?

Clare: For a treat, my husband and I will always choose The French Café in Symons St. You can’t beat the wonderful ambience and delicious food.

ML&S: Where is a chic place to have brunch?

Clare: Ponsonby Bistro is one of my favourite places to meet friends. It’s relaxed atmosphere and gorgeous owners Blair and Melissa always make you feel so welcome.

ML&S: If you get any time out, we would find you?

Clare: Clearing my head on a walk to one of the Herne Bay beaches or having a massage at Bliss reflexology in Takapuna.


ML&S: Where do you like to go for weekend getaways?

Clare: The girls love going horse-riding in Matakana, which is only an hour’s drive from Auckland. It also has an amazing market every Saturday. Waiheke Island is a must for a day trip. The ferry takes 40 minutes to arrive in a paradise filled with spectacular beaches, restaurants and vineyards.

ML&S: What is your favourite season in Auckland and why?

Clare: The changing colours of the leaves and bright blues skies make Autumn my favourite season by far.


ML&S: Stylish place to enjoy a lovely wine?

Clare: There are so many places to choose from but The Mudbrick restaurant on Waiheke Island has million dollar views. Looking out over the lavender bushes and vineyards and seeing Auckland in the distance is breathtaking.

ML&S: Most loved sights or areas in your city?

Clare: The view from the top of Cornwall Park across Auckland, the domain and museum, picture perfect Devonport, Parnell for its boutique shops and Rose Garden and Herne Bay for its schools, beaches, cafes and restaurants.


Make sure you check out Clare’s magnificent books on her site my-mummy-loves & follow on FB @Mummy Loves & IG @mymummyloves






March 2015




Written by , Posted in Sweet


There’s nothing like homemade vanilla pudding with grated apple and cinnamon to warm up your kids and satisfy their sweet cravings.

This is a seriously simple and yummy recipe that requires a few ingredients and only takes 10 minutes to make!

Recipe makes one bowl.


- 200 grams full cream milk
- 1 tablespoon fine semolina
- 1/2 teaspoon raw sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla sugar
- 1/4 apple
- cinnamon to sprinkle


- Place milk and semolina in a small pot and bring to a boil.
- Add vanilla sugar and raw sugar and cook on medium heat for about 5 minutes or until it thickens. Stir occasionally.
- Place in a bowl and grate apple on top and sprinkle with cinnamon.



March 2015




Written by , Posted in Sweet


Spoon sweets are fantastic desserts, as you can make and store them for months in sterilised jars, which means you always have a delicious homemade treat on hand.

Today we share our family recipe for grape sweet spoon, which tastes amazing with a dollop of ice cream or yoghurt and sprinkled with almonds.


- 1 kilo seedless grapes
- 500 grams white sugar
- 1/2 cup of water
- 1/2 lemon, juiced
- 1 tablespoon vanilla sugar
- almonds to serve (optional)


- Remove grapes from stem and wash thoroughly.
- Place sugar and water in a large pot over high heat and bring to full boil (about 10 minutes).
- Add your grapes and reduce heat to medium and cook for about an hour, uncovered and stir occasionally.
- Add lemon juice and vanilla sugar, stir and cook for another few minutes.
- Transfer to a bowl and allow to cool for an hour.
- Spoon into sterilised jars with airtight lids and store away from heat.
- Serve with almonds, yoghurt or vanilla ice cream.



March 2015




Written by , Posted in Sweet


There is something about French desserts that make them look so tempting and inviting and they taste even more heavenly than you can possibly imagine.

This exquisite and warming Pear Tart Tatin is a traditional Parisian dish that is all of the above- plus more!

What’s even better is it’s so simple to make, and will leave your kitchen smelling so sweet for hours on end.


- 3/4 cup caster sugar
- 70 grams unsalted butter, chopped
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 5 pears
- 2 tablespoons lemon
- 1 sheet of rolled puff pastry
- 1 tablespoon flaked almonds (optional)


- Preheat oven to 200 degrees celsius.
- Peel, core and cut pears into wedges and place in a bowl. Add 2 tablespoons of lemon juice.
- Place an oven proof frying pan on stove top over a medium heat. Add sugar, butter and cinnamon and heat to a caramel colour, stirring constantly.
- Place ready pears in the caramel and turn heat down to low and cook for an extra 8 minutes, until the pears are tender and cooked through.
- Remove from heat and cool slightly.
- Arrange pears nicely around frying pan and place the pastry on top of pears.
- Carefully tuck pastry around the outside of the pears and down into the sides of the pan.
- Bake for around 35 minutes, or until pastry is golden brown and puffed up.
- Remove from oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes.
- Run a knife around the edges and place a large plate or dish over the top and carefully turn the tart onto the plate. Sprinkle flaked almonds on top of tart and serve.



March 2015




Written by , Posted in People


Today Mummy’s Life and Style teamed up with the beautiful online boutique store Petit Parisians, to bring you a gorgeous array of Marie Chantal Children’s wear.

Petit Parisians specialise in carefully selected designer children’s wear from Paris, London, Milan and New York and cater to boys and girls from newborn through to 10 years of age.

If you are after a special occasion outfit or items that are classic, wear well and stand out in the crowd- you will definitely find an amazing ensemble for your little boy and girl on this fabulous online store.

Marie Chantal Children is by far one of ML&S’ favourite children’s labels, and today our cute little models Nicholas and Nikoleta show just how adorable, versatile and stylish MC clothing really is!


Empire line coat- It doesn’t get any more luxurious than this magnificent navy empire line coat. Featuring fully lined and full-length sleeves, this is a winter staple in any little girl’s wardrobe and available from sizes 3 through to 10.




Cashmere star & crown cardigan & taupe trousers- Nicholas is dressed in this luxurious V-neck cardigan, made from the softest 100% cashmere and the lovely neutral tone will allow you to team it well with any outfit. Here it’s paired with taupe cotton trousers that are designed with two back pockets and adjustable internal waistband. Available in sizes 3 through to an 8.

Silk floaty dress- Stunning for that special occasion- it is made from 100% silk and features fluttered sleeves, a gathered skirt with a drooped back hem and a gorgeous black velvet bow tie- adding an extra hint of glamour. Available in sizes 3 through to 10.



Rose sequin shorts & floral Shirt - These adorable rose sequin shorts feature a front tie and are definitely a statement piece. They can be worn on both warm and cooler days (paired with some cute tights) and here it’s been teamed with this stunning floral shirt made from 100% cotton.

Grey woven tee & checkered shorts- Nicholas is sporting a gorgeous grey woven collar tee, which is great for a smart casual occasion. Made in soft jersey, it features cotton poplin detailing and an embroider crown.  It’s teamed up with these adorable checkered cotton shorts that feature engraved buttons, jet pockets and adjustable elastic. Available from sizes 3 to 8.


Sequin anchor tee & seersucker shorts- Nikoleta is wearing an amazing sequin anchor tee made from super soft cotton and features cool cap sleeves.  Paired with these super light and airy seersucker shorts, with white white piping and adjustable waistband- this is an adorable casual outfit for any little girl. They are available in sizes 3 through to 8.

Stripe tee & charcoal trousers- Nicholas looks too cool for school in this fun stripe tee, featuring an anchor-print chambray pocket band cuffed sleeves. It’s paired with these smart charcoal cotton trousers that can be dressed up or down. Designed with two back pockets and an adjustable waistband, they are available up to a size 8.

Make sure you check out Petit Parisians here & you can follow them on IG @petitparisians


Models- Nicholas 3 & Nikoleta 2.5

Clothes- Marie Chantal Children all available online from Petit Parisians

Shoes- Models own

Location- Cotton Candy in Double Bay cottoncandykids.com.au