A tiny slice of my life

This is a look at my life, and the many things I try to learn and do.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Ashling Cottage - Hepburn Springs - Victoria

Well I have just spent a delightful long weekend away, despite the weather,

We went with Miss Le Coiffure and her partner.

This had been planned since Easter.

We wanted a house with 2 bathrooms which makes it a lot easier for getting ready, also it helps with the toilet situation.

I found Ashling Cottage in Hepburn Springs on the hill above the Day Spa.

Is wasn't very expensive and it had everything we wanted, 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms a large kitchen and a lounge room. It also came with a veranda wrapped 2/3's of the way around the house.

In better weather we could have had a BBQ on the veranda because they also supply a Webber Q electric BBQ.

The back veranda.

Many a slice of bread was put our here during our stay for the very well feed cockatoos.

A view of the lounge room, looking through to the back veranda and the kitchen.

The main bathroom.

Isn't that the biggest spa bath and I did use it and had a lovely time soaking.


Thursday, July 12, 2012

Easy Mars Bar Slice

A few weeks ago Miss Le Coiffure had her Baby Shower. Now her & I made most of the food after a very big 2 days of cooking, I discovered a bag of little Mars Bars, actually they were the Aldi equivalent.

I asked Miss Le Coiffure 3what they were for and she said she was going to make a Mars bar slice with them, but couldn't be bothered.

A couple of days later I thought I would make it for her. Having never made one before I searched on the internet for the recipe, to my surprise it required 5-6 cups of rice bubbles, which I didn't have so I invented this recipe using some of the broken chocolate biscuits Miss Fish had brought home.

Everyone who ate this raved about how yummy it was and were did I get the recipe, and a pity I hadn't made more.

So here is my recipe it is very simple and only requires 3 ingredients + the melted chocolate for the topping.

Mars Bars Slice
1 bag of bite size Mars Bars - I used the Aldi equivalent, 2 tbsps of Rice Bran Syrup - you could replace it with honey, 1 cup broken chocolate biscuits 9 about 1 cm in size, 1/2 small block of milk choc melted for topping

Place a piece of baking paper on a tray.

Place all Mars bars in an microwave proof bowl, melt using bursts of 30 seconds on high, stirring after  each 30 seconds, when melted remove. Stir in the syrup/honey. The add biscuits.

Tip immediately onto paper and using a metal spatula flatten and shape into a oblong/square shape.

Leave to set, once set pour over melted chocolate. Leave to set the cut into squares.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Lime, Olive Oil & Yoghurt Cake - Dresden Plate Quilt Update

Well after 2 days spent sewing the back then 2 days pinning it together this massive quilt is ready for quilting.

That's a job I will be starting today !

Now instead of making a packet mix with Miss Fish this weekend I decided to make something to use the limes that my Dad had given me from his tree.

So after searching the internet I found a recipe for a yoghurt, olive oil & lime cake - by Souvlaki for the Soul.


Now this was my sort of recipe as it was mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl, mix together the wet ingredients in another, then pour wet into dry whisk then into the cake tin. See easy.

Now I didn't pay total attention to it while it was cooking so it is a little well done on one side !

As I was originally going to make  a packet mix I didn't worry about the fact that I didn't have any icing sugar, and I wasn't going to drive into town just to get it, so there isn't any icing. A fact that Mr CLI's face showed he didn't approve when he was presented with a piece of cake uniced, but the cake is quite sticky and moist so it really isn't missed. If I did ice it I would have made a fairly runny icing using icing sugar and lime juice to drizzle over the cake.

As usual I fiddled with the recipe I left out the salt, I also used S.R, Flour + baking powder which gave the cake some lightness and also put paper in the base of the tin to ensure it's easy removal from the tin.

Lime, Yoghurt & Olive Oil Cake

Preheat oven 180.c Spray a 20cm springform tin with olive oil and line the base with greaseproof or baking paper.

1 3/4 cups S.R. flour, 1 tsp baking powder

- Sift together in a large bowl, or as I did I just whisked them together.

1 cup greek yoghurt, 2 eggs, 1/4 fresh lime juice + zest from 1 lime, 1/3 cup olive oil, 1 cup caster sugar

 - whisk together in a bowl or jug, pour into the dry ingredients. Whisk till just combined.

Pour into tin and smooth top.

Bake 40 - 50 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.

Remove from the oven, place onto a cake rack. Run a knife around the edge and remove sleeve. Let sit for 5 minutes then upturn the cake onto a teatowel remove base and paper. The invert back onto the cake rack, let cool. If icing, ice once the cake has cooled.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Baby Knits

Now here is the latest knits which I made using balls of angora that a friend on my Mums gave her. Now if you know anything about knitting the fact that the balls were 10 grams each tells you they are old balls, but they have created a beautiful little matinee jacket and bootees.

Well I spoke to soon I can only get 1 photo to load, so I will have to keep trying but at least I have made a start.


Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Victorian Sponge and Dresden Plate Quilt Update

Well what a busy weekend. It was Mr CLI's Birthday on Sunday. So I cooked a roast - pork and chicken - for Mr CLI, Miss Le Coiffure and her partner and myself.

Miss Fish had been asked to come into respite at the last minute, but that doesn't mean she missed out as I cooked another Birthday tea last night. One of Mr CLI's all time favourite meals, crumbed sausages, mashed potato, steamed vegetables, gravy and tomato sauce. He loved it.

Miss Fish and I also made cupcakes which I iced and she showered with multi coloured sprinkles. She also insists that we have candles on them and sing happy birthday. This makes her so happy.

For Mr CLI's actual Birthday I made a Victorian sponge which I filled with chantilly cream and jam. I iced it with plain icing, Mr CLI actually loves passionfruit icing, but Miss Le Coiffure doesn't so plain icing it was.

A Victorian sponge is quite easy, you just let the mixer do all the work, then a little bit of metal spooning at the end. My sponge looked like I had used polenta in it because it was so yellow, but is was actually the free range chicken eggs from Miss Fishes work !

Victorian Sponge
4 large eggs, beaten together using a fork, 220 grams each of - S.R. flour, caster sugar & butter -soft, 1 tsp baking powder

Chantilly Cream
1 tbsp vanilla caster sugar OR 1 tbsp caster sugar + 1 tsp vanilla extract, 1 x 300 ml thickened cream

Beat all ingredients until soft peaks form.

1 cup icing sugar, 1 tsp softened butter, 2-3 tsps boiling water

Place  the icing sugar and butter in a small bowl, using a butter knife add the boiling water 1 tsp at a time. Mix until a thick icing forms.

Preheat oven to 180.c. Butter, flour and line base with greaseproof or baking paper of 2 x 20cm (8") cake tins.

 In an electric mixer beat the sugar and butter until light and fluffy, it took 5 minutes in my mixer.

While the beaters are on medium speed add the eggs at about 1 tbsp at a time, beat in after each addition.

Remove bowl from mixer, sift in flour and baking powder 1/3 at a time, fold in using a large metal spoon. When the flour is nearly folded in add the next lot, this way you have less chance to lose too much air from the mixture.

Divide the mixture between the 2 tins and flatten the top with a spatula.

Bake in the middle rack for 20 - 25 minutes. Mine took 20 minutes.

Remove from oven, let sit for a couple of minutes, then run a butter knife around edge of cake upend onto a teatowel, remove the paper from base then invert onto a cake rack, let cool before icing.
Upturn one cake so you have a flat surface ice with icing, leave to set.

Place the other cake flat side down onto the serving plate spread with jam then cream. Top with other cake.

Slice, eat and enjoy.

Now for the Dresden Plate quilt update I finally finished the top yesterday and todays big job, which might even run into tomorrow is to pin it all together for quilting.

A view of the borders.

One of the Dresden Plate Panels. Wrinkly as it hasn't been ironed yet.

So till tomorrow I had better stop dragging my feet and get pining !