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I picked up 2 packs of Rowntree`s fruit pastille lollies at Morrison`s last week for £1 (buy one get one free). At 12 and half pence per full-size lolly I thought this was well worth a try!
Four lollies in a pack they are based loosely on the fruit pastille sweets flavours, blackcurrant, raspberry, orange, pineapple and lemon (although strangely there is a picture of a lime on the box and one of the layers is coloured green!)
And at 61 calories per lolly they are a very healthy option for a refreshing treat on a hot day.
The base, I think, (as the flavours tend to blend together) consists of pineapple, with raspberry, lemon, orange and blackcurrant built onto that in layers. This is where my complaint comes in, it means that you only get a very small amount of the blackcurrant flavoured ice, and obviously the tastiest!!
They are made with real fruit juice too which sems to be par for the course with these things nowadays.
There is a note on the box telling you that it may stain and I can testify to this as my 4 year old almost ruined one of his tops whilst eating one!!
All in all for the price I paid I was very pleased with what I got, and even at full price I will certainly purchase these again.
I bought 2 packets of cheddars last week at Morrison`s for 84p, buy one get one free. I hadn`t tried them for ages and I wondered if they were still as moreish as ever.
Ryan (my son) and I decided to try some on Tuesday, 10 minutes later most of the first packet had gone!! The thing is though, I think the reason I personally kept eating them was the search for the "real" cheese flavour. Its a strange one with cheese, because if you don`t like it you can spot it a mile off, but if you like it you can hardly taste it.
That said they are a tasty little snack on their own.
They are a savoury biscuit (obviously) lightly salted with a mild cheesy flavour. I don`t know what they were like before they had 35% more cheese added.
The cautionary note is that at 20 calories per biscuit and 1.2g fat you very quickly clock up a huge amount of calories, without the advantage of ever feeling full!!
Over-all I would recommend Crawford`s cheddars but I would suggest you eat them with cheese for the full effect and to ensure you eat less of them. Although eating cheese as a healthier option who am I kidding!?
To try to write a different fun review on Newcastle United FC I have for your perusal my list of the best players to play for the club denoted by their place in the alphabet.
A. William Appleyard has to be the first choice as he won 2 championship medals with the club in 1905 and 1907, however the best I`ve actually seen was Faustino Asprilla. His hat-trick against Barcelona is etched in Geordie folk-lore
B. No question on this one even though I played alongside Ian Bogie at school and I fabricated and installed Warren Barton`s drive-way gates, there is no competition. Wor Pedro (Peter Beardsley) was one of England`s best and had 2 magnificent spells at his native club. Probably the best player the club has produced with one notable exception.
C. There`s not that much choice for this letter, Andy Cole is the man for me simply because of his goals record during his short time at the club. Frank Clark gets a mention though as one of the best defenders we have had at the club.
D. Not a lot of choice but a good choice nevertheless. The mighty Wyn (Davies) gets the vote.
E. There`s such a short list for "E" that I have to plump for Robbie Eliott who played under King Kev and was surprisingly sold on by Kenny Dalglish. Eliott was honest and versatile and played with his heart on his sleeve.
F. Jack Fairbrother won an FA Cup medal as goal-keeper for the club but I never saw him play. "Sir Les" Ferdinand is the best f-er I have seen!
G. By far the hardest choice so far. Hughie Gallacher, Shay Given, David Ginola (all superb, all would get into any toon team). But the fat mars bar freak gets my vote: Paul Gascoigne was quite simply the most gifted player of his generation.
H. Terry Hibbert gets a mention here, but no question about it Joe Harvey lifted 2 FA cups and managed us to the Fairs Cup in 1969 (on his 50th birthday), a legend in these parts.
I. Jim Iley, part of the 1965 promotion side. Not a lot of choice besides Jim to be honest.
J. There is a dearth of talent in the letter J. I`ve managed to dredge up Jermaine Jenas who was a big talent but dis-loyal in the extreme.
K. One of those letters that has an automatic name attached. King Kev say no more.
L. Rob Lee was signed for a snip from Charlton at £500,000. Keegan`s best buy he went on to play for England and scored some delightful goals from Midfield. Who can forget his hat-trick against Antwerp.
M. Its not fair. Malcolm McDonald was an absolute legend at Newcastle, unfortunately so was Wor Jackie (Milburn) who has to take it I`m afraid.
N. Irving Nattress is my choice for N, if only because he was a cultured defender in the FA Cup final 1974 and the only other N of note was Geoff bloody Nulty!!
O. Scraping the barrel with this one: Michael Owen could have been but simply wasn`t so Liam O`Brian gets it if only for that free-kick against the mackems.
P. Again because of a lack of choice I`ll go for Gavin Peacock as he was an important part of Keegan`s promotion winning side. I would have gone for Stuart Pearce but he wasn`t really ours was he?
Q. The pie-man Mick Quinn scored lot of goals. That`s about it though.
R. The Robledo brothers won the cup, Ian Rush scored one goal for us but for entertainment value I`m going with the controversial choice of Laurent Robert because although he was lazy he was phenomenal in spells.
S. Can only think of one for S: Alan.............quite simply the best player ever to wear the jersey
T. John Tudor forged a superb partnership with Supermac and its ironic that he gets the nod on "T" when Malcolm has to take second place for "M"
U. Tom Unwin won the championship in 1927, and its a good job he did as he was the only "U" to play for the club!!
V. Imre Varadi was the centre forward when King Kev played for the toon but Colin Veitch won 3 champinships and an FA cup in the 1900`s so I guess he wins!
W. Chrissy Waddle better than Hoddle tralalalalalalala!
X. Marcelino- x rated!
Y. David Young did, well, absolutely nowt!!
Z. Gianfranco Zola.............once played at St James` park for Chelsea!
Well that`s it, self indulgent rubbish, thank you and good night.
I first visited St James` Park in 1974 with my Dad when I was only 6 years old. I fell in love with Newcastle when Malcolm McDonald scored the only goal of the game against Stoke (I think but don`t beat me if I`m wrong).
Since then I have visited the ground on countless occassions, I`ve supported the team through thick and mostly thin just like every other fan. I won`t lie and say that I go to every game because I don`t. I won`t put up with sub-standard football even from my own team.
The stadium, however, is anything but sub-standard. It is easily one of the best grounds in the country and one of the biggest. With a 52000+ capacity it is now the 3rd biggest stadium in the English football league.
The way it has beeen extended over the years leaves you with a mis-match of architetcure around the whole ground, with different height stands.
Its a real cauldron when a big game is being played (less often these days) and the crowd can become the twelfth man.
I`ve experienced the facilities at Newcastle at all levels and I have to say they are fantastic. For the hard-core fan there are plenty of bar and refreshment areas. As usual inside football grounds you pay over the odds for everything, but its a decent pint and the food is decent enough.
At corporate level you have a choice of a private box or dining in one of the suites. I have been fortunate enough to be a guest to both many times. Both choices have their own advantages.
Dining in the 206 club is a lovely experience. A top-notch 3 course meal with flowing alcohol (usually provided by a host) and hosted currently by Peter Bearsdley and John Beresford. After a guest speaker (usually an injured first team player) you go outside for the match, sitting on leather cushioned seats in the company of people like Steve Bruce, Michael Chopra, Lee Clark, Glen McCrory and Brendan Forster. It`s a brilliant day out.
In the box its a different story but every bit as good. I was situated next to Shola Ameobi`s box the first time so I obviously got his autograpgh for my son, (not convinced about that one anymore!!).
The good thing here is you still get an excellent meal and plenty of flowing alcohol, but you can also watch in the warmth through the patio doors if you wish (and you can raid the fridge!!). And the very best thing is you don`t have to push past people every time you need to visit the toilet.
I`ve never experienced corporate entertainment at any other ground so I`ve nothing to compare it to but I would be hard pushed to get better service and attention to detail.
Not everybody gets the chance to watch the toon play in such comfort, but if you do grab it because its a superb experience.
Halifax online is an excellent site in my opinion.
I recently signed up for the Reward current account which gives you £5 per month as long as you pay in £1000 per month. Importantly this can come from any source, it does not need to be your salary, and it does not need to stay in for any length of time either. Tip: Pay £1000 from another account if you want to and set up your biggest direct debit payments from the Halifax then it`s job done.
I have digressed slightly as this review is about the on-line service. To get on-line you must first open any account and deposit £100 at a local branch of Halifax or Bank of Scotland (both companies are merged and are owned by LLoyds TSB).
When you`ve done that they will issue you with a user name of your own choice and a temporary password. As soon as you log in it will ask you for this and then get you to provide several pieces of memorable information. At this point its wise to change your pass-word to something easier for you to remember.
Why I like this system is because it gives you an extra security process which gives you a little more safety.
When on-line its easy to set up direct debits, standing orders or regular payments.
Another feature is that it shows details of any other Halifax accounts you may have. For example I have 2 mortgages and they both show on-line so you can see at an instant your repayment history.
All in all an excellent site in my opinion.
One word of caution, if you open a Halifax reward account, don`t be tempted to upgrade it as they hit you with silly costs for useless benefits. AND DO NOT GO OVER-DRAWN AS THE CHARGES ARE RIDICULOUS.
Heinz beans and pork sausages initially seems like an ideal topper for toast.
But delve a little deeper and I have my reservations.
Heinz are a huge brand and a leader in their field but I think there is something wrong with this product and have done for years.
It may be just me but the thing I can`t get past is the seemingly thinner sauce (compared to a tin of heinz beans), and the fact that the beans are always hard.
Far be it from me to question Heinz, but do they use a different preservation or emulsifiers for this product?
Looking at the ingredients on a tin of beans opposed to beans and sausages the answer would seem "Yes". Ordinary baked beans do not contain pea starch or emulsifiers-Tri, Poly-and Diphosphates. I`ve googled this and they are preservatives. It is my view that this has an effect on the quality of the beans.
Frankly, I think most people would agree that what they like about this product is the little sausages and not the beans.
I`m sorry if this comes across as a carping review but I feel that food is being spoiled for the sake of profit.
Strolling around the aisles of Morrison`s last week I noticed a deal on Heinz Big Soup (something like 3 for a pound if I recall rightly). I like Heinz soups and decided to try the beef and vegetable variety. I have always enjoyed the taste of the standard vegetable soup and scotch broth so I thought this would be on a par.
I thought a tin of soup might be a good meal to have at work with a crusty roll at only around 300 calories (new year`s resolutions and all that).
After dealing with the trials and tribulations of road transport for 4 hours last Monday I allowed myself 10 minutes respite to grab the tin of soup in question and transferred it upstairs to the canteen. I plucked the ring -pull and poured the contents into a bowl, then bunged it in the micro-wave for 2 minutes followed by a stir and a further 1 minute. It looked rather chunky and smelled very nice.
When I started to eat it I was surprised by how rich and tasty the soup was, chunky but soft carrot and potato, peas and soft beef. The only complaint I had was that one tin did not seem to be enough (but that`s just because I`m a pig!).
Unconvinced, the next day I tried the same lunch. But no difference, I found myself eating lovely chunks of vegetable again.
I ate the third tin on day three! I think this soup is lovely. It is an excellent alternative to home-made soup which is obviously unbeatable.
I recommend that you all try it.
Jelly babies have been around for a long time, almost 92 years in fact! They were launched in 1918 as "peace babies" and have stood the test of time ever since.
They come in a bright yellow box or packet and as other reviews have pointed out are very appealing to children and adults alike.
Jelly babies come in 6 delicious flavours and each baby has its own name: Strawberry (Brilliant), Lemon (Bubbles), Lime (Boofuls), Blackcurrant (Big Heart), Orange (Bumper) and Raspberry (Baby Bonny). Note the alliteration, Baby Bubbles, etc.
They are made with natural flavours and colourings but are high in sugar and calories (20 per baby) and have 7% real fruit juice. Many sports people eat jelly babies as a high carbohydrate snack but they can afford to as sugar burns off during exercise, so beware!
They are extremely moreish and once you start its hard to stop, they have a crusty exterior, which sounds off-putting but its not, and a lovely fruity flavour. The blackcurrant is my favourite as it seems to have the most taste.
When I was a kid my mother used to say that jelly baby boys had more on them (for obvious reasons) but funnily enough this has made me check for jelly appendages ever since, and rather prudishly I would refuse to eat a jelly willy if I ever came across one!!!!
I completed the Great North Run last October with the certain knowledge that I would be able to scoff the bag of Basset`s jelly babies found in my goody bag with guilless abandon as I had done in 2003. Imagine my disappointment when I discovered that they no longer compose a portion of your other-wise useless reward!!
I picked my last two 600g boxes for £5 on offer at Morrison`s last week but I recommend that you but these sweets only occasionaly if you do not want to end up the size of a house!
I have never bought a packet of Asda Smartprice Jaffa Cakes as I am not keen on jaffa cakes per se.
However I was visiting a friend recently and she had them in her cupboard. Now I am not snobbish in the least but when I saw the plain white and green wrapper with 12 jaffa cakes in simple black writing my first thought was they will taste like card-board at best and crap at worst!
She explained that she was experimenting with down-sizing on certain brands and encouraged me to try one with a cup of tea.
With trepidation I agreed to participate in her down-shift experiment. To my surprise it was quite tasty and I actually preferred it to the more expensive alternative (McVitie`s) as they are made with milk chocolate, (although I am sure somebody will inform me that McVitie`s make a milk chocolate version now). The orange filling seemed quite tangy but there seemed to be less of it, the biscuit/cakey bit was nice and light and the chocolate was passable.
I won`t be buying these because as I said at the top of the review I`m not keen but if I was I would recommend them as they are by no means sub-standard and at around 24p a packet they are excellent value for money.
A short review but what else can you say about a cheap jaffa cake?
Many people see this album as the transitional period between pure pop and more sophisticated material. I disagree with that statement as the Beatles always wrote pop songs, (Penny Lane, Paperback Writer, Hello Goodbye, for example in later years). What people seem to forget is that the band was composed of four people but ,within that ,two geniuses.
John, in my opinion the better song writer overall, had a great sense of the grotesque, and also wrote more personal introspective lyrics than Paul. Paul was the musical Beatle with an unerring ear for superb melodies. As a result even from the earlier albums you can see the development of two song styles.
It was the brilliance of these two people writing both together and separately that made the Beatles the greatest band of all time, and it is only through urban myth that many think that all the Lennon and Mccartney songs were penned together.
Help! is the title track of the album (and the rather disappointing film), Written by John it is a genuine cry for help. It shows the vulnerable side of Lennon, one of the most popular figures on the planet at that time, unsure of himself, probably as a consequence of the insane life they were living. Tina Turner`s cover of this track , sung at the pace that Lennon wanted, allows the lyrics to appear much more stark and meaningful. That said it was a number one single and worked superbly as a pop song.
The Night Before
Paul bounces into action on this one. This is an example of Paul`s more melodic style, even though it is about rejection it comes across in a totally different way. Still an excellent tune and a very good vocal.
You`ve Got To Hide Your Love Away
My favourite song on the album (well joint anyway!). This is Lennon at his Dylanesque best. Compare John`s lament at lost love to Paul`s in the last song and then you start to see the difference in their styles.
I Need You
One of George`s two offerings on the album, not the strongest to be brutally honest.
Anoher one by Paul. When I first listened to the Beatles I preferred the melodies on this type of song. As usual a great pop song.
You`re Going To Lose That Girl
This is a good vocal from John, the lyric is a liitle vacuous but the tune makes up for that.
Ticket To Ride
One of the stand out songs on the album, described by John as one of the earliest heavy metal songs ever made. I wouldn`t go that far though, as although the track has heavy drums it still retains a distinct melody. The change of pace and rhythm at the end of the song was an unusual departure. And another number one!
A dismal effort, sung by Ringo. Even as a staunch Beatles fan I cannot defend the indefensible.
It`s Only Love
One of John`s weaker songs, which he freely admitted himself in a later interview.
You Like Me too Much
This song wasn`t a bad effort from George as a pop song, though not the strongest lyrically.
Tell Me What You See
This was a pure filler from Paul, instantly forgettable.
I`ve Just Seen a Face
A slightly country and western style ballad which works really well and holds your attention through-out the song. A sing-along song, I defy you not to!
The most recorded pop song in history, the perfect pop song. After saying within this review that John was the better song-writer, Paul weighs in with possibly the best Beatles record ever.
It started out as "Scrambled eggs, how I love to eat my scrambled eggs". Paul apparently woke up one morning singing it and carried it in his head for days as he couldn`t believe he had written it because it came out so complete.
I think it was a seminal recording but I will qualify my earlier statement by asking you to listen to the words of the song. Nothing clever in there is there?, no resolution, not much depth? The tune, the simplicity, the strings, the over-all effect is what makes this song one of the best ever written.
Dizzy Miss Lizzie
A pretty uninspiring cover of Little Richard`s classic to follow the best song ever written!
Help! was not the best record the Beatles made, but it wasn`t a weak album by any means. Under huge pressure to produce new songs the Beatles only included two covers on this album which followed hard on the heels of "Beatles for Sale" and came just a few months before "Rubber Soul." I don`t know of any other band in history who were ever expected to produce like these four young men.
I would not hesitate to recommend this, or any other Beatles album for that matter!
I bought the Panasonic Viera 42 inch screen plasma television last year and I would say that it has been one of my better purchases.
It is a very sexy set when wall mounted. Sleek, thin and stylish it becomes a very pleasant feature of your living room.
This television falls in a mid price range, retailing at between £400 and £700 depending on where you buy it and how good your haggling skills are.
It comes in any colour you like as long as it`s black, but black is good. It provides a good contrast with white walls (I`m biased of course coming from Newcastle!). It is really thin (less than 5 inches wide). It obviously comes with a remote control unit which is a little too big in truth.
The picture quality on this set is excellent, as is the sound quality. It is extremely easy to tune as it has an auto-tune option. It has a child lock menu, is HD compatible and has digital tv installed as standard.
This is a very user friendly tv with simple to operate timer options and an easy to use programme guide which can be used to view several channel listings at once or can give the full evening`s viewing for a particular channel with the press of a single button.
In summary, I`d recommend this product to anybody as it is excellent in all categories.
After several problems with Abbey, whom I have banked with for over 15 years I decided to switch my bank account.
As an avid Money Saver I consulted the Martin Lewis oracle and found that the best current account at that moment was the First Direct internet account which gives you £100 after depositing £1500 minimum per month for three months. If you ditch and switch between 4 and 12 months they bizarrely give you a further £100. They also give each new customer a free £250 over-draft facility. You must also use their easy switch system for direct debits and standing orders in order to receive the bonus.
Since opening this account I have found the change almost seamless as their easy switch system makes the change effortless, although I did have to change my details with Child Benefit and my employer.
They have a good deal on Isa`s, seemingly good mortgage rates providing you bank with them and they have an excellent 5% regular saver.
I think this has to be one of the most competitive banks out there, and I would guess this is down to the fact that they have no high street branches to bump up over-heads.
They are a relatively "safe" bank owned by HSBC.
If you don`t pay in £1500 per month there is a £10 per month penalty to pay so watch out for this.
In conclusion, I like this bank a lot and it will be with some mis-giving that I ditch and switch after 7 months. I like this bank but I don`t love it and £100 is £100 after all!!
I don`t know how much a box of Cadbury`s Heroes costs as I won the one I`m reviewing at my son`s Christmas Nativity play in the raffle (it cost me £2).
With 20% extra you get 464g of chocolate.
The jury`s out on this selection:
Twisted Creme Egg.
This mini version of the Classic Creme egg is a bit like the full-size version, you get a hint of that lovely creme filling but no where near enough. They should never have tampered with nature, eggs are oval end of!
A mini version of a bar of chocolate, nuff said
Dairy Milk Caramel
No complaints on this one eat 6 sweets and you`ve had a bar of delicious caramel chocolate
A chocolate covered flake which is very pleasant.
A Cadbury`s classic. Not my fondest sweet these days as I nearly killed my little boy with a mini fudge when he was around 18 months old. My fault entirely by the way but still a bit off putting . My three year old now loves them now though so no harm done!!
One of my favourites, not to every one`s taste, however they taste like crap when they`ve been in the fridge.
Quiet frankly an affront to the senses. If I wanted dark chocolate, which I don`t, I`d by a bar especially. You might as well buy quality street if you want all that business!
As I said earlier I won these in a raffle, therefore I rather cheaply found out that they are not for me.
That said I tend to find if I want chocolate I buy a bar anyway so perhaps I am being a little unfair.
Ed Byrne made a joke a few years ago. He said, "When I was a kid I had a peanut allergy, the other kids used to pin me up against the wall and make me play Russian roullette with a bag of revels!"
Now before you go all pc on me I am not mocking people with the allergy,its a very serious condition. I am just pointing out that Revels have now changed beyond my child-hood recognition. Indeed I can see why the peanut revel was removed to avoid the very problem the "joke" alludes to (not the russian roulette bit, obviously).
Before I get into more trouble I`ll conduct a review of the humble revel:
The Coffee revel
This is a vile little sweet, coffee fondant that is instantly spat out by at least 50% of the sweet eating fraternity. Even the advertisers realise that this is a horrible revel as they use it as the one that every one falls to the floor choking on. It baffles me why this replaced the perfectly fine coconut revel.
The Orange Revel
A tangy orange fondant covered in chocolate, this sweet is made to taste delicious because of the sheer relief that it is not coffee!
The Raisin Revel
This little monkey replaced the pea-nut revel (which I liked by the way). The only plus point is they are easy to spot by their shape. (I don`t like raisins by the way!)
The Chocolate Revel
A very imaginative button of chocolate (i think Cadbury`s covered that one) but quite tasty and perfectly acceptable.
The Malteser Revel
We all know what a malteser tastes like so no need to explain that it is a honeycomb ball covered in chocolate (oh, I just did). This is also perfectly acceptable.
The Toffee Revel
The best revel in the packet, a toffee revel a bit like.... well in fact a replica of a toffett.
Revels come in a multi-colured pack ( a mix of orange, brown. red and yellow) presumably to indicate variety.
168 calories for a 38 gram bag loads of fat and sugar: pretty standard for chocolate products.
A 38g costs between 50p and 60p on average.
In summary, I will not be buying revels anymore since they changed the gold-posts on me, I hate coffee and raisins so I can`t eat one third of a packet. The two sweets they altered could not have been a worse choice for me. For that reason I am giving Mars revels the lowest rating possible.
Quavers are a blast from my past.
I ate my first packet at around 5 years old back in 1973 and I ate my most recent packet about 10 minutes ago!
So what`s changed?
They now contain 80% less saturated fat and 25% less salt. But they now taste.........no different whatsoever. So why put all that fat and salt in them in the first place?
That aside let`s examine the Walkers Quaver in a bit more detail.
Its a cheesy flavoured potato curl that melts in your mouth (not quite as melty as a skip but I digress) and just cheesy enough to make you think they could do with being a little more cheesy (a bit like this review I suspect).
Made by Walkers they are of the best standard and there are no cheese curls out there that bare comparison to these babies.
I don`t think you can be satisfied by a small bag of Quavers. A health conscious friend of mine names them as her crisp of choice because they are only 87 calories per bag (multi-pack) but that`s probably the point. They are only 87 calories because they are made of air and a bit of potato.
I got two bags of 12 for £1.99 at Morrisons making it 8.33p per bag which is mega cheap.
In summary a pleasant, light, tasty snack but not the Real McCoy, now that`s another review altogether!