Naturally Kind Food

Naturally Kind Food are a small, local business based on South Wales. They make vegan cakes for the masses! You can find their cakes in various vegan hot spots around South Wales, but they also make occasion cakes on request. Check out their website for details!

At the very beginning of the month, I entered a Facebook competition to win a Naturally Kind Food cake and I won!

I don’t live far from the Naturally Kind Food HQ so I went to pick up as soon as I found out. I was greeted by the lovely Sara who passed over 2 cakes! I was absolutely spoilt. They were cakes that she had been experimenting with sugar paste decorations, which I must say, were absolutely beautiful.

As you can see from the images, the cakes look amazing. My personal favourite was the more colourful one as I like bright colours that catch my eye. This one was a smaller one.

The second cake is the one you can see on the right and it was much bigger. There were beautiful flowers on the top made with icing which I actually crushed a little bit with the box so they’re much flatter than they’re supposed to be!

Aesthetically, both cakes were absolutely beautiful. I felt so lucky to have won them. Let’s get down to the important stuff, the taste!

The cake, as pictured above, was filled with cream and jam. The entire cake was covered in a chocolate ganache and fondant icing on top. The layers were perfect and it cut beautifully.

The sponge was still moist, even a few days after being baked and decorated. We continued to have servings during the week and it remained delicious, and drying very slowly. It was absolutely delicious.

I was good and I did share with Tom and his family and everyone enjoyed their share of the cakes!

I highly recommend Naturally Kind Food for any occasion cakes you may be looking for. Take a look at their website as they make a huge range of flavours of cakes so it’s definitely worth dropping them a message.

Plus, who doesn’t love vegan cake?!

Finding Your Dream Wedding Dress

Some of you may be aware that Tom and I got engaged last year and we’re now planning our wedding! It’s onto one of the big decisions… the wedding dress!

Where do you start?

For all you brides out there, it is recommended that you buy your wedding gown 12 – 18 months before the wedding. As I’m in that time frame, I started my search.

I had already started following gown designers and local shops on Instagram for inspiration. I didn’t have any expectations as I just loved everything out there.

Visiting Bridal Boutiques

I would never dream of just casually walking into a bridal boutique with a group of friends but I’ve walked by many a window and admired from a far. This attitude played a big part in my nervousness surrounding the idea of trying on dresses.

One of the small boutiques I was following on Facebook and Instagram, Willow In White, put a poll up on Instagram about having an open evening. I thought this was a great idea. It was an opportunity for new brides, such as myself, to go into a boutique without feeling the pressure of any commitment to buy and for her to meet us too. The poll was a resounding success and an opening evening was organised.

I popped along to the open evening on a Thursday evening, was greeted by Mel (the owner) with a glass of bubbly and I felt at ease. There were other brides there and I was able to look at all the gowns and accessories available at the boutique. I booked my gown trial appointment for the Saturday immediately after and I was very excited.

Who do you take with you?

Don’t be shocked… I went on my own and when people have found this out, I’ve had the most peculiar reactions…

My sisters no longer live local and my mum works on the weekends, and due to my last minute appointment decision, they wouldn’t have been available to attend.

I was absolutely fine on my own. Arguably, it was better as the fewer opinions I had the better! Even though I am quite a decisive person, I am easily swayed by other people’s opinions, especially when they’re my family as I value their opinion the most. Without them there, it forced me to think about my own opinions!

By going by myself, I picked a dress that I fell in love with, not anyone else. For those who are more strong minded than I am, take a few of your nearest and dearest!

How do you know if you’ve found the one?

I asked this question to everyone and I got the same answer from almost everyone… When you know, you know. And it’s true.

There were so many dresses that I loved and was even surprised by, but when the one was on, I knew.

I couldn’t stop looking at it in the mirror and I didn’t want to take it off. It made me feel so special and I didn’t even want to put on any of the other gowns again because I was just so in love with it.

My Experience Summarised

I was nervous going into my gown trial. I was worried that I wouldn’t suit anything and that I wouldn’t like anything. But after the first gown went on, everything shifted and I was so excited.

A big part of my amazing experience was meeting Mel. As I went on my own, she was a massive help and a big part of my experience. I valued her opinion and she asked all the right questions to get the one.

As much as I loved the experience, I’m glad I found the one with Mel at Willow In White because I wouldn’t want to traipse around town trying on all sorts of gowns in different boutiques.

For some top tips, follow Willow In White on Instagram and watch their Top Tips highlights!

Who Cult Coffee + Donuts in Bridgend [2]

A few months ago, I wrote about Who Cult in this blog post after Tom had brought some back for me. I finally visited the actual shop a few weeks ago so I’m writing again to show you the interior and more of their delicious donuts.

I’ve tried to visit on a few occasions but I usually try to catch them when they’re closed.

We went to pick up some doughnuts on the morning of Tom’s sisters wedding to treat the bridal party to some delicious treats!

Doughnuts, as before, were absolutely delicious and beautifully decorated. Everyone was a fan and loved them.

The interior of the cafe had seating for those who are planning on travel from further away or just want a break, but the decor spoke to me!

They also sell their own branded clothing which can be found in store and comes in a range of sizes and colours.

This was a brief post but I didn’t see the need to reiterate what I’d written in my previous post but I thought you guys would like to see the inside of Who Cult!

It did not disappoint, and Death before Decaf is my new motto!

Being a Vegan Wedding Guest: Issue 2

I had the absolute pleasure of being invited to Tom’s sister, Kate’s, wedding a few weeks ago which was an absolute dream. Her and David got married in Coed Y Mwstwr Hotel in Bridgend which is tucked away in Coychurch, and conveniently only down the road from us.

I’m close to Tom’s family and love them like my own so I had the luxury of being involved in so many parts of the wedding, but with little responsibility!

In this blog post, I’ll write about all the little vegan bits that were thought about and catered for.

The Night Before The Wedding

We were invited to the hotel for a family meal before the nuptials the next day in the hotel restaurant. There was a vegan menu available and we were given the menus to peruse in the lounge area of the hotel.

We ordered and were taken into the restaurant when they were ready for us. We all ordered Tempura Vegetables to start, most of us ordered the Cauliflower and Pea Curry and Tom’s mum ordered the Chickpea and Lentil Roast for mains. To finish, myself and Hannah ordered the Vegan Chocolate Brownie and everyone else ordered the Grilled Pineapple with vegan ice-cream.

The food was lovely and the service was great. The Vegetable Tempura starter was a big hit with everyone and something that I highly recommend. It was a lovely start to the weekend!

Tom and I then headed home, ready for the next day…

The Wedding Day

Tom and I had a lie in as the ceremony wasn’t until 2:30! We were lucky to have an early check in at the hotel so we were able to check in at 12 so we started getting ready and packing some bags ready for the day!

On the way to the hotel, we stopped off in Who Cult Coffee + Donuts on Bridgend Industrial Estate on request of the bridal party, so it was impossible to say no! It was the first time I had actually gone inside so I took some photos but I’ll write another post. Here’s an older post from when I originally tried their doughnuts.

We arrived at the hotel and ran a few errands with Hannah, Tom’s younger sister and Kate’s maid of honour. We checked in and went straight up so that I could finish getting ready. Once I was ready, I spent the morning with the bridal party, taking photos and tearing up at the sight of Kate in her wedding dress. She looked beautiful.

The ceremony was lovely and there was so much love in the room. It was so clear to see that Kate and David shared so much together and were meant to be. It was an honour to be a guest.

After a drink and photos, we were seated fo the wedding breakfast. The favours were seeds to plant to help encourage bees, so we’ll be making sure we do that!

The wedding breakfast provided by Coed Y Mwstwr catered for both vegans and omnis. Kate herself is a vegetarian so she had the vegan option also.

The vegan option was: Vegetable soup, Black Eyed Bean Bourginon and Vegan Chocolate Brownie with ice cream.

For those who are curious, the omni option was: Leek and Potato Soup, Turkey Roast and Cheesecake.

I didn’t rate the bourginon. The mashed potato was delicious and creamy and the veg was great, but the meat replacement I found to be plain and dry.

The vegetable soup was really delicious. I could have eaten a vat of it! Tom appreciated the croutons too. He said he’d never had croutons before which shocked me!

The chocolate brownie was the same as the previous night but was much nicer with the ice cream.

Remaining on the topic of food… Kate and David’s wedding cake was made by the incredibly talented Vic’s Vegan Bakes. The cake was absolutely stunning and was made of 3 tiers:

  • Red Velvet and Chocolate
  • Salted Caramel and Biscoff
  • Vanilla and Raspberry

Every tier was absolutely delicious. Everyone loved it and I don’t think they even knew it was vegan. Vic bakes amazing cakes and makes them look like an absolute dream! Check out her instagram for all the inspiration.

The evening buffet came out around 9:30pm and has various vegan options and a small section of the omnis too. I picked up a cucumber sandwich, vegetable spring rolls and wontons and potato wedges. Tom had spicy falafel which he loved and couldn’t stop eating.

In between all of this, Tom and I spent the evening dancing the night away, pulling out all of our best wedding dance moves and trying to get everyone we know up on the dance floor with relative levels of success.

The Day After The Wedding

We stayed the night at the hotel. The room was lovely but I didn’t find the bed particularly comfortable. I had very particular comfort needs but it was a nice stay and it was very quiet.

What I did love was that instead of a hanging door sign to indicate you don’t want to be disturbed, they had the cutest cuddly toy dogs! “Let Sleeping Dogs Lay”.

We were invited to join the bride and groom for breakfast at 9am. I never usually eat much in the morning so I only had a coffee and juice but there was lots of lovely fruit on offer as well as cereals. We were also provided with soy milk for teas and coffees. Everyone else ordered vegan breakfasts which from what I remembered had sausages, toast, hash brown and a grilled tomato.

A huge thank you to Kate and David for having us and making the day so special for everyone. Thank you for catering for us and including us in so much of your day!

Cobbles Kitchen in Ogmore-by-Sea, Bridgend

On the main road headed down to Ogmore beach, just before The Watermill pub, is a little cafe called Cobbles Kitchen. Cobbles Kitchen is only a small establishment but have so many food options to cater for various different dietary requirements.

A few weeks ago, my brother and sister came to visit and we went to Cobbles for brunch. My sister is making a conscious effort to cut out meat and has many vegan days. We ordered the vegan breakfast and my brother ordered the breakfast burrito. I also ordered a soy latte to accompany my breakfast.

Soy Latte

My latte was fine. The coffee was a little more bitter than I’d like and the foam at the top was unusual and very thick, not what I expected. I didn’t actually finish my coffee and instead moved onto water.

Vegan Breakfast

Breakfast consisted of 2 sausages, mushrooms, baked beans, a grilled tomato, avocado, tofu scramble, a homemade potato hash and a slice of toast. I’ve had the cobbles breakfast before, but on this occasion, it was the best I’d had.

The toast was delicious and crisp. The avocado was perfectly ripe and the tofu scramble was flavourful. The potato hash was my favourite part. When I’d had breakfast on previous occasions, it had been soggy, but this time round it was cooked well and retained it’s structure.

My brother said his breakfast burrito was ok, but on the tomato-ey side. He still enjoyed it all the same.

Cobbles Kitchen has so many options so it’s a great location to bring omni friends and family. And of course, only being down the road from Ogmore beach is great too and ideal for a day trip.

Who Cult Coffee + Donuts in Bridgend

Hidden away on an industrial estate in Bridgend is Who Cult Coffee + Donuts.

I’ve never actually visited Who Cult myself before. I tried to once, only to be told that they weren’t open yet. What bothered me about this was that we arrived at 10:50am. Both Google and the opening times on the door said they were open at 10am but when we approached the door, someone came out to tell us they were opening at 11am. In my hanger, I drove away and got breakfast and coffee elsewhere.

Admittedly, my rage was unwarranted. I was impatient for food, but I feel like they should have corrected their opening hours before hand to save us the journey.

However, with Tom being the best boyfriend, he has delivered me Who Cult donuts on various occasions and they are honestly so delicious. Not only are they vegan, they are light and airy with bright and delicious icing sugar.

I haven’t had their coffee yet, but Tom says it’s lovely. Also, apologies for the missing donut in the photo on the right. Tom couldn’t wait to eat it so consumed it immediately!

Their store apparently sells Who Cult branded apparel alongside their coffee and donuts. Maybe one day, I’ll pop back to visit in a less hangry stage in the day to get a proper feel of the place and eat more of their delicious donuts.