ME…. AND MY HOUSE­KEEP­ING! with Mishal Hu­sain

BBC news pre­sen­ter starts her early shifts with cof­fee, en­joys weed­ing and al­ways car­ries car­damoms in her hand­bag

Good Housekeeping (UK) - - Contents -

Mishal Hu­sain lives in north Lon­don with her hus­band Meekal, who is a so­lic­i­tor, and their three sons.

How tidy is your house?

I have dif­fer­ent stan­dards for the chil­dren’s rooms and my own. I like theirs to be tidy and the com­mu­nal parts of the house to be or­gan­ised. But my own desk and clothes are of­ten in a mess. They tend to be the things I don’t get around to.

What is your sig­na­ture dish?

Sadly for my waist­line, it’s prob­a­bly cheese­cake. Or shortbread – I like a recipe that in­cludes some rice flour.

Cook for friends or eat out?

Ide­ally both but nei­ther hap­pens as much as I would like, largely be­cause of my work­ing hours, which usu­ally in­volve be­ing in the news­room late or hav­ing a 3am start the next day. I have got more used to the hours over time but when the alarm goes off at 3am, I al­ways feel a bit sick.

What food could you not live with­out?

Ap­ples, sat­sumas or clemen­tines and cheese. Plus, in my hand­bag, I al­ways carry a lit­tle pouch of car­damoms – very much a South Asian habit, I think, and I like the taste.

Who are your dream party guests, liv­ing or dead?

I would prob­a­bly go right back to the 16th and 17th cen­turies and in­vite fig­ures from the Mughal dy­nasty in In­dia, in­clud­ing Mum­taz Ma­hal, who in­spired the build­ing of the Taj Ma­hal, Nur Ja­han, an­other em­press, and Em­peror Ak­bar. They presided over a di­verse em­pire with sub­jects of many re­li­gions. It would be fas­ci­nat­ing to speak to them. Give us a tip to save time… I dread pack­ing, so I keep a travel hand­bag ready with ev­ery­thing I would need on a plane.

What’s the best bar­gain you have ever found?

I love a bar­gain. I al­ways try to make use of three-for-two of­fers when I do gro­cery shop­ping on­line. How­ever, I sus­pect some of these might not

turn out to be bar­gains af­ter all.

What is your health motto?

To live in hope that one day I will do the right amount of ex­er­cise for my health. The only ex­er­cise I have ever en­joyed is cy­cling, and I used to cy­cle to work. I know I should do more – I can’t rely on run­ning around the park like I did when the boys were younger. They’re more in the age of Fort­nite on­line video game now.

Where is your happy place?

A ho­tel we have been to in the Bavar­ian Alps for the last few years. It is in such a beau­ti­ful lo­ca­tion – you gaze out on the moun­tains and can walk to the lakes. I get a huge feel­ing of peace be­ing there.

What did your par­ents teach you?

They gave me a love of books, and taught me the im­por­tance of ed­u­ca­tion and to be open to the world around me.

What ad­vice will you hand down?

To treat oth­ers as you would like to be treated. If we all did that, the world would be a hap­pier place.

What do you al­ways have in your cup­board?

Earl Grey tea bags. I usu­ally start the day with a cup, ex­cept on an early shift, when I have a cap­puc­cino as soon as I get to work – that hits the spot.

What is your big­gest ex­trav­a­gance?

Theatre tick­ets. There are great things to see in Lon­don, and I try to make the most of that.

What al­ways lifts you out of a mood?

A great fra­grance. It doesn’t have to be a per­fume – the scent of a lovely hand cream called Farmers’ Welsh Laven­der gives me an in­stant boost.

Are you a hoarder or do you throw things away?

Some­where in be­tween. I fight hoard­ing but I am not as clut­ter-free as I would like to be.

What is your favourite house­hold task?

I quite like weed­ing be­cause the re­sults are im­me­di­ately ap­par­ent and sat­is­fy­ing. ◆ The Skills: From First Job To Dream Job, What Ev­ery Woman Needs To Know by Mishal Hu­sain (Fourth Es­tate) is out now

When the alarm goes off at three in the morn­ing, I al­ways feel a bit sick

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