2020 in 20 stories – your favourites of the year

We’ve put together the most clicked and viewed stories that we’ve published this year in a best-of list. From travel to DIY, restaurants to recipes and a very special top-spot piece, it’s a fascinating focus on 2020’s trajectory.

2020 in 20 stories

This year has certainly been a landmark of our times. And the top 20 most popular stories we’ve published in the last 12 months certainly reflects what we’ve been going through – more so than any other year in the past.

There’s the expected range of travel, food, drink and lifestyle stories in this year’s top 20 most read stories on Mr & Mrs Romance. But it’s interesting to see the types of recipes, destinations and activities that you’ve shown you’re into.

It’s a clear reflection of what we’re all going through at the moment.

As for the number-one most popular story of the year, well, it’s a starkly clear message of what we’re all most concerned about.

But have a safe, merry Christmas and a happy new year – let’s hope 2021 has better things in store for us all.

All the very best – Jim & Christina xxx

20 to one – our top stories of 2020

Hope you enjoy our countdown from number 20 to the top story of the year. And thank you again for reading us this year.

We hope we’ve entertained, informed and inspired you.

Do you know these 2 special secrets to making bread at home?

There’s nothing quite like the satisfaction of pulling out a perfectly baked loaf from your oven, your house full of the delicious smells of fresh bread.

Here are a two secrets to making bread at home plus our bread recipe I use all the time… continue reading

Top 10 roadtrip podcasts

Hitting the open road with a full tank, plenty of snacks and that sense of freedom of a road trip is wonderful.

But sometimes those empty straights begin to drag and you need something to entertain you. Here are our current top 10 podcasts perfect for a long drive… continue reading

How to thrive – not just survive – a long-haul flight

There are lots of ways you can survive a long-haul flight and even more articles telling you how to do it.

But these 7 tips won’t have you walking off the plane at the other end – they’ll have you skipping down the skybridge… continue reading

Cook, eat, live Bangkok – understanding Thai food flavours with the Market Experience

Perched above the motion and energy of Bangkok’s biggest and oldest market, and teaching recipes passed down from generations, there’s no better way to learn about Thailand’s culture.

Market Experience gives you a keen insight into Thailand, its culture and most importantly its food… continue reading

Next-level Mexican food – how to make carne con chilli

We’ve all heard of chilli con carne, but carne con chilli is a completely different creature.

More in keeping with the true Mexican dish, this is a rich, slow-cooked wonder that will never let you look at the meek mince and beans you’re used to the same way again… continue reading

5 Mornington Peninsula wineries you must visit

Way down south in the state of Victoria, Mornington Peninsula wineries are bottling some incredible vintages. But visiting these cellar doors gives you much more of an experience than just a wine-tasting.

Here are a few Mornington Peninsula wineries you must visit… continue reading

And the reason we were down the Mornington was to celebrate our friends’ beautiful wedding, which you can read more about here.

How to make gnocchi – Christina’s family recipe

Every culture has its version of dumplings. In Italy it’s gnocchi.

Delicious pillowy potato dumplings in your favourite pasta sauce – the perfect soul food and fun to make at home. Here’s Christina’s family recipe for gnocchi… continue reading

Our travel guide to Thailand’s forgotten capital

Thailand wears the heart of its culture high on its sleeve.

But the ancient city of Ayutthaya – perhaps the most culturally significant part of the country and once the nation’s capital – is often overlooked, even though it’s so close to Bangkok… continue reading

Is this easy cooking technique missing from your kitchen?

Tomato-based dishes, from pasta puttanesca to a vindaloo, all have something in common: they all need help with their ‘bliss point’.

Here’s how to create gastrique – the simple element your tomato sauce is missing that’ll take your cooking to another level… continue reading

How to build your own tabletop gas fire pit for your balcony

Mirroring the swirl of the wine in our glasses, the flames from our new fire pit lick the air, comforting light flickering around our balcony.

Here’s how to make your own fire pit for your balcony or veranda… continue reading

Your top 10

The countdown continues into the top ten most popular stories of the year.

10. Bangkok, Ayutthaya, Krabi… and Coronavirus

We were lucky enough at the beginning of the year to squeeze one more international trip in before Covid-19 forced everyone into their bunkers. 

Travelling Thailand is always a lot of fun, but this trip – in spite of the eerily quiet Bangkok streets – was the best yet. Here’s where we went, what we saw and most importantly what we ate! continue reading

9. 3 ways to the perfect roast potato

Perfect roast potatoes

Being stuck at home on lockdown due to Covid-19, we weren’t alone in looking for ways to find comfort in our confinement. And what better comfort is there than with beautifully crunchy, tender, fluffy roast potatoes. 

Here are three different ways – and a mathematical solution – to creating the best roasties you’ll ever eat! continue reading

8. How to make potato dauphinoise just like Manu

Potato dauphinoise recipe by Manu Feildel

Pipping my roast potatoes to the post for a spot at number 8 by the nearest of margins, Chef Manu’s potato dauphinoise brings a new level of flavour to the noble spud.

I was surprised at how easy yet incredibly delicious this recipe turned out. It also comes with Manu’s tips on cooking the perfect steak. If you’re looking for an impressive, joy-bringing dish for Christmas, you’ve got to try this dauphinoise recipe. continue reading

7. Our Empty Esky – how to support Australian bushfire communities

Empty Esky Australian bushfires

It seems like a lifetime ago that we were all talking about Australia suffering from the worst bushfires it’s ever seen. 

Covid has overshadowed even that. 

But before the pandemic struck and even as it was picking up speed, we were on the road around Australia visiting places that had suffered the terrifying disaster of the bushfires. This is our Empty Esky story. continue reading

6. Where to eat in Sydney – Amber finally get the green light

Where to eat in Sydney Amber Restaurant Pacific oysters

As restrictions eased in Sydney and across the country, bar and dining venues were allowed to open towards the end of the year. 

One place we visited was the exceptional Amber in Sydney’s World Square, which had waited until November to open – a tough delay of some nine months from its anticipated launch.

It had been so long since we’d eaten in a restaurant, Christina and I had almost forgotten what it was like. Not a bad place to get back into the swing of things though. continue reading

5. How to make easy 2-ingredient naan bread

Easy no-yeast naan bread recipe

Following on from the home-baking bread craze that happened this year, I branched out into making naan bread. Obviously I don’t have a huge tandoor or the Subcontinental Asian heritage to own this style of cooking, but I do love a curry. 

Anyway, I was really surprised at how easy and tasty these breads are. Much better than the shop-bought ones but not as good as the ones from an Indian restaurant. I’m happy with that. continue reading

4. Could this be the most Sydney Brewery?

Sydney Brewery

Another venue able to launch after a long lock-down, Sydney Brewery in Surry Hills finally managed to open its doors for the first time in July. It’s on the site of where one of the city’s first breweries – Albion Brewery – operated in the 1830s.

Sydney Brewery not only makes superb beer and cider on site, the food is also well worth the trip. continue reading

3. How to take a Hint – our guide to Christmas gifting

This year, Christina and I put together a gift guide bigger and better than any of the ones we’ve done before. We’re so proud of this guide – and even prouder that it’s been so popular.

We’ve been lucky to work with some amazing brands to put this guide together this year, so check out the beautiful products and concepts we’ve featured. 

Along with the gift ideas and reviews of the products, we also have a few articles on Christmas, gifting and entertainment to cheer you on over Christmas. continue reading

2. Are you ready to travel yet? Our NSW destination guide

NSW destination guide

I’m not surprised a story guiding people to the best places in New South Wales has been popular on our site this year. Ordinarily, it’s our European content that goes crazy, following our summer trips around the continent, but this year everyone including us has being forced to explore their own backyard.

And that’s not a bad thing at all.

There are so many wonderful places to see in Australia, we’re very lucky to live in such a beautiful, interesting country. 

So here are our top tips for travelling around NSW. continue reading

1. Desperate times call for desperate pleas for humanity

Emily Greenberger NYC covid-19

The number-one most read post on Mr & Mrs Romance in 2020 is about as indicative of the year as it can get.

It was with the heaviest of hearts that our wonderful friend Emily wrote a story for us in mid-March about the horrors of Covid, and its direct and devastating impact it has had on her.

Emily’s father was one of the many victims of the pandemic as it ripped through New York, claiming many lives that should not have been taken. Her father was in hospital for an unrelated operation when he contracted the virus.

Things did not get better from there.

Here’s the story in Emily’s beautiful words. We feel so honoured that she chose us and our site to share her experience. I just wish she hadn’t needed to. 

All we can hope for now is that we can all be back together again safely and soon. 

Thank you Em. continue reading

Covid-19 New York, Emily Greenberger

Here’s to a restful Christmas, a safe turning of the year and a happier 2021.  

Jim & Christina xxx

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