In the middle of the night, hidden beneath the covers, I start laughing at the idea of anyone else finding out what I'm Googling. No, I'm not funding the dark web, I'm not streaming illegal stuff of any kind, I'm not even shopping for kittens; I'm soothing my troubled insomniac brow on, gazing at things formerly only purchasable in French supermarkets, now brought all the way across the Channel to my London front door – with no delivery charge on orders of more than £35. (More than £35? Pah. I can spend over £35 on biscuits alone in a French supermarket.)

Steak and Yorkshire pudding salad

Steak and Yorkshire pudding salad

Serves 4

Crispy duck and watercress salad

Crispy duck and watercress salad

Serves 6-8 as a starter

Pea salad is a great spring salad that utilises the whole of the pea family, shoots and all

Raw power: Mark Hix reveals how to enjoy spring vegetables in their natural form

Don't cook all the goodness out of spring vegetables, says our chef.

Rebecca Armstrong: Supermarket snacks: be careful what you wish for

When i was just a twinkle in its creator's eye, its sister paper The Independent moved offices from east London to west. Staff left behind a windswept waterfront and a long walk to buy lunch in favour of shops! Cafes! Restaurants! Marks & Spencer! All seconds away, which is great, although our wallets now take regular thrashings. But no one's ever content, right? So there is the occasional gentle whinge about what isn't perfect: mainly that the nearest branches of two old favourites, sandwich bar Eat and sushi chain Itsu, are too far away. (Oh, and that our diamond shoes are too tight).

Ruby salad is a great winter or autumn salad

Crunch time: Beat those winter blues with Mark Hix's inventive salads

Who said that salads had to be eaten during the summer months?

Brushing teeth with tap on using only 6l

Water conservation: Is it possible to make a smaller splash?

With a drought on the way, we need to start saving water now. In his bid to go from torrent to trickle, Simon Usborne dries out

Take a pot shot: Have a go at growing from seed and give yourself a flying start for the Olympics

In a deluge of paper and plastic, the spring catalogues arrive. With loud boasting, too: 40 kinds of tomato, posh ranges of six French salad potatoes, more vegetables than anyone else. This is gardening, 2012 style, its face all freshly scrubbed and ready to go.

Rebecca Armstrong: Is it me, or does a Smartie sarnie sound quite tasty?

What's on the menu for lunch today? A cheese and pickle sandwich? Quinoa salad? Chips? Will it be eaten at home, or in the pub, or al desko, scattering crumbs over your keyboard that will worm their way under the "S" key and make it ssssstick? Homemade or shop bought?

Weekend Work: Time to pinch sweet peas

What to do

Taking no prisoners: According to one associate, Smith threatened to stab a man for waking him up. He is also reputed to have fired a sound man for ordering a salad

Life lessons: Mark E Smith on bullying, the occult and why Stalin had the right idea

Nothing's ever been Mark E Smith's fault – not the punch-ups, not the break-ups; least of all his band's constantly changing line-ups. At least that's what the man with the most malevolent snarl in music tells Robert Chalmers

The 10 best salad servers

1. French Bull

Bring your salad to life with these psychedelic servers. Shatterproof and dishwasher safe, they are available in a multi-coloured ring pattern or paisley design.


Mushroom Salad

Serves 4

Beetroot, red onion and horseradish salad

Serves 4-6

Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona from £629pp
South Africa
Prices correct as of 12 December 2014
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas