Staying In Is The New Going Out

Living in Leeds is like living in an ever changing city. I mean, there are always the old faves that I’ll keep going back to – Sela Bar and Belgrave, I’m looking at you – but at the same time, there are ALWAYS new places to go and try out. There’s a bar or restaurant for whatever mood you’re in or whatever occasion you’re celebrating and it’s exhilarating to have a growing list of places to venture to.

Looking over the canal in Leeds

But, it can be tough on the bank account. And the alcohol that’s potentially consumed trying out all these new places is not good for the body. Plus the hangover the next morning is something I’ve never loved. I mean, who does?

So, no matter how much Leeds is growing on me and no matter how much I do love a night out with my friends or work colleagues, or going out for dinner in one of Leeds’ many restaurants, I’ll always be a fan of staying in as well.

And that’s exactly what I did last night.

I invited my best buddies over, cooked a good roast dinner, watched Ultimate Beastmaster – don’t ask, I’m not sure why we watch it either. I don’t think any of us are. – got some drinks in and had a good old catch up with some belly aching laughs in between.

It was great.

Staying in with my friends

It was great to eat a good meal. I’d gone and fetched some meat and veg during my lunch break yesterday and cooked it up when I got back. It was great just to chill out with my friends. My friends that I’ve known since I was in middle school.

It made me appreciate them all a little bit more. The stories we shared, the weird in jokes we have, the shit we got up to at school and these guys are still in my life.

And the thing is, it was all in my little flat. We didn’t have to go out and get smashed to enjoy each other’s company. We didn’t have to spend a fortune and weep into our pile of receipts the next morning. We also didn’t have to go outside in the chilly weather. WHERE HAS THAT NICE SPRING SUNSHINE GONE?

Instead, I roasted some chicken, cooked up some of the most delicious stuffing I’ve ever had, made some horrendously unsuccessful Yorkshire Puddings – they were more like cakes although the boys seemed to smile their way through them – fried some quartered Brussel sprouts with garlic oil and bacon which in my opinion, the ONLY way to make brussel sprouts taste good, and I cooked some roast potatoes too. MAN THEY WERE GOOD.

Staying in with a Thursday roast dinner

Roast potatoes

Brussels sprouts and bacon in garlic oil

Cutting up broad beans

The meal was haphazardly eaten around the table with mismatched cutlery but that doesn’t matter does it? What matters was that I got to spend good quality time with my friends over a flippin’ good roast dinner. And I’m not saying that I couldn’t have done that on a night out, but the night in meant we enjoyed a different kind of hanging out and it’s definitely one I’m keen on doing more.

 What do you think to staying in? Is it the new going out or is it just different?

This post was in collaboration with Debenhams who kindly sent over a bunch of cooking stuff to create this delicious meal. All views, opinions and bad Yorkshire Puddings are my own though!