Lately if you have been watching me on Instagram, I was knitting for our baby boy some trousers. Although I am really pleased with the chevron pattern I have created, I had an inkling that they might be too small for quite a while. After knitting one leg it became obvious that they are indeed the wrong size and probably would not even fit a tiny baby :(. I took it to the baby group last Monday and it’s official: this project is a fail (better noticing earlier than late).
The idea to knit these trousers came to my mind after seeing these lovely creations by Camp&Company. I just love the shape of them and this is what I wanted to recreate on the ones I was knitting. Oh well… I still have time, I am sure toddler would look super cool in these as well :-). And what about the trousers I almost finished knitting I hear you say? Well, I am thinking to turn them into chevron patterned hat! After all I did take a lot of time for working out the pattern and actually knitting them ;-).
Lovely sunny day, isn’t it?
Last week I tried making popsicles for the very first time. This week I thought I will give a try on making an ice-cream float. I have never tried a soda float that I liked, but I definitely like the idea of it! I tried root beer float in the past and I hated it, maybe it’s not my cup of tea (maybe root beer requires acquired taste). Anyhow I decided to go with coke this time and make it slightly healthier than usual recipes I have seen. Just because (I am not quite sure why I went with this challenge at all!)…
First I thought I will make diary free and low fat almond milk ice cream. I thought the taste of coke and almond would go well together, a bit like amaretto and coke! I froze some almond milk with a small amount of ground almond in the cups…But when I whizzed it in the food processor (because I don’t have ice-cream maker), it turned into something of sorbet consistency. Not something I would put on top of the coke!Next I thought I will make the coconut milk ice-cream (something safer as many I heard tried and made this successfully). Not as low fat, but still on the healthy side ;-). Here is the recipe!
COCONUT COKE FLOAT
- 1 400ml can coconut milk (choose the creamiest brand like “Chaokoh”)
- 1 tsp stevia
- coke life
1. First make the ice-cream, strain the coconut milk loosely so liquid separates from cream as much as it can. Mix the stevia into the cream and freeze the mixture for 3-5hours.2. Once the cream is frozen (in shallow container preferably), break it up and whizz it in food processor. 3. The mixture will become chalk like, but don’t worry! Once you start mixing it, the ice-cream should loosen up and gain cream texture (which is what we want! right?). 4. Finally, time to enjoy this ice-cream float! Pour the coke into the glass and then scoop the ice-cream on top. Alternativelly you can scoop the ice-cream first into the glass and then pour coke over it.Enjoy!
If you have been reading this blog for a while, you probably know that I looooooove ice-cream (not only in summer)! I have made many type of ice-creams in the past, although I feel there are so many types still to try. During weekend I made my first batch of popsicles! I sneakily tried to copy Solero ice-cream, because that is my favourite popsicle in the whole world (I first tasted it when I was 14 years old and I basically fell in in love with it!).
To make these popsicles was quite a challenge. I wanted plain ice-cream completely concealed in frozen fruit juice. Since I never buy special equipment to make the ice-cream I thought of first freezing cream part in smaller cups and then dip them in fruit juice that is in bigger cups. For the smaller cups I used plastic disposable cups that made it difficult to remove the ice-cream pops from them, especially when Ice-cream is softer than ice. For the bigger cups I used silicone cupcake moulds that worked so much better!
PASSION FRUIT & CREAM POPSICLES
- 250ml whipping cream
- 200g condensed milk
(for fruit juice ice)
- 60ml (1/4cup) orange juice
- 170g passion fruit pulp (either from a can or from around 6 passion fruits)
1. First make the ice-cream part. Whisk the cream and carefully combine it with condensed milk. Spoon the mixture into the smaller cups than the cups for the final freezing (it’s best to use silicone ones for easy removal). Insert popsicle sticks into each filled cup before freezing (I used coffee stirrers instead since I had some leftover at home). For best result freeze it overnight. 2. Once the ice-cream is completely frozen then prepare the second cups for the final freezing. Pour a small amount of orange juice mixed with passionfruit pulp into each cup. 3. Dip the ice-cream pops into prepared cups. pour some extra fruit juice on top if it does not cover the cream completely. Freeze them for at least 3 hours.These may not look exactly like Solero, but they taste amazing! Enjoy!
As I am writing this post I am munching on this cake for breakfast. It’s actually not such a big disaster after all as it taste quite nice. However there are few things I would do differently now.
One year ago, on my hen do I tasted a very similar cake and I promised to myself to recreate it. So this is how I got on…For the sponge I chose a gluten free option (I am on trial now to find out if I am actually gluten intolerant), very similar to this chocolate orange cake. I boiled three pealed oranges and pureed them. Whisked 375g sugar with 9 eggs (I know I am CRAZY!!!). Then I added pureed orange, 375g ground almonds, 2tsp baking powder and mixed everything until mixture became well incorporated. I divided the cake mixture into lined baking tins and baked them in 180C oven for 1hour. The cakes came out great, but If I did it again I would have added orange zest into the mixture as well to make it more orangey (you know what I mean!). I made pastry cream for the filling (my first time ever making it!!). I followed this recipe from BBC food, so it must be trustworthy. However I think I poured hot milk into egg mixture too quick, because I could still taste the egg in it (only slightly). I spooned the pastry cream on the bottom cake and decorated it with raspberries. Yum!Finally I have covered pastry cream and raspberries with the second cake. I covered the top of the cake with white chocolate glaze (or ganache some may call it) that was obviously too thin and runny. This is where I messed up most! I followed my original dark chocolate glaze recipe here which worked on so many occasions. I guess with white chocolate I need to add more of it to compare to dark chocolate glaze cream:chocolate ratio. Maybe 200g of white chocolate into 90ml double cream? Hope my mistakes helped 🙂
This cake that I baked for Evangeline’s birthday almost two weeks ago was received with the “awww…” wow!” and “that’s amazing” praises. Little did the know that this cake did not come out exactly how I imagined! I was experimenting with baking cheesecake on the top of the sponge (something like this). I took two of my favourite recipes and combined, the cheesecake unfortunately went under the sponge. I guess I will have to do more experimenting in the future! CHOCOLATE SPONGE & VANILLA CHEESECAKE WITH THE CRANBERRY TOPPING
(for the sponge)
- 50g dark chocolate
- 55g butter
- 100g golden caster sugar
- 1 egg
- 2tbsp milk
- 2tbsp yogurt
- 70g plain flour
- 2tsp baking powder
(for the cheesecake filling)
- 400g soft cheese
- 120g caster sugar
- 1 tsp cornflour
- 3 eggs
- vanilla seeds scraped from one pod
- 1/4 tsp lemon juice or white vinegar
(for the topping)
- 200g cranberry sauce
- 300g fresh cranberries
- 50g sugar
1. First make a chocolate sponge cake mix. Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water, then remove from the heat and set aside.
2. In Another bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until pale and fluffy. Add the rest of the ingredients gradually (including melted chocolate) and mix to combine. Spoon the mixture into the prepared baking pan.
3. Next, make a cheesecake filling. Place all the ingredients into the bowl or large measuring jug and mix everything well with the hand processor (I find this method the quickest!). 4. Pour in the cheesecake mixture on top of the sponge cake mixture. Pop the baking tin into the preheated 170C oven and leave there to bake for about an hour or hour and half. The cheesecake has to be not too wobbly!5. While cheesecake is baking, prepare the cranberry topping. Put cranberries, sugar and cranberry sauce into the small saucepan. Heat everything and mix until the sugar dissolves and cranberries bruise slightly.
6. Once cheesecake is cooked and cooled top it with the cranberry topping and let it set in the fridge for at least 2 hours.
7. Decorate this cheesecake with biscuits. I used some melted chocolate as a glue!A nice ribbon holds everything in place and it makes the cake look so cute!You can dust the cake with some icing sugar, but be warned! This lovely frosting effect does not last very long time 🙁 Enjoy cake decorating 🙂
I wanted to try this berry clafoutis recipe for a while now. After counting how many calories it would have (for my diet, you know) I realised it’s not so bad. Only 148.60 calories for one portion (one 10th of the whole bake)! I have decided to go ahead and bake half of the recipe in little tartlet baking tins. The only problem was that only one mini clafoutis survived. The other ones literally leaked out while baking. You see, my tartlet tins have loose bottoms for easy removal. However the clafoutis mix is so thin that it managed to leak out through the small gaps. I am glad I placed the tartlet tins in a baking dish, so my oven did not get messed up by this!!!MINI BERRY CLAFOUTIS adopted from Julia’s Album
(makes 5 mini clafoutis)
- 2 small eggs
- 150ml single cream
- 1tsp vanilla extract
- 25g flour
- 0.25 tsp baking powder
- 65g icing sugar
- butter for greasing
- caster sugar for dusting
- 170g mixed berries (I used frozen ones)
1. whisk eggs with cream and vanilla extract until the mixture becomes light and fluffy. Julia says: “Make sure this step is done properly so that in the end your dessert does not come out smelling too much like eggs”. Very true! This desert have a tendency to become ‘eggy’
2. Sift flour, baking powder and icing sugar into the egg mixture and mix to combine well.The batter will be very liquid, ‘thin’ as I mentioned earlier. 3. Grease mini tartlets (or mini ramekins) with butter (or spray oil) and dust them with caster sugar. Don’t make my mistake here, loose bottom tins are not suitable to make this desert!4. Divide the berries between 5 tins.5. pour the batter into the tins. Bake the clafoutis in 180C oven for 30min.Oooops! My mistake… The batter leaked out!! 🙁At least one survived! 🙂I enjoyed every bit of it… hmmmHopefully you have learned from my mistakes 😉
I don’t often share my errors, but today I thought I will. I admit it happens too often when the craft project I am working on does not turn out how I would like to. Sometimes it’s about forgiving yourself and learning how to use those errors to your advantage.
This year I have decided to go all natural when dying my Easter eggs. I suppose to have loads of experiences with this as Lithuanian Easter traditions are all about dying eggs (we don’t eat that many chocolate eggs). So I decided to go with batic technique. I applied molten bees wax on the areas that I wanted to stay un-dyed. This was really tricky as I used paint brushes (when I was little we used to use cotton buds, so I thought the application would be smoother with the brush. Oh I have been so wrong!). I chose duck eggs as I could not find white shelled chicken eggs in the shop. I boiled the eggs with coffee grinds for 10 min to get the brown colour (I somehow feel that the onion shell gives better colour from my previous experiences).
So here we go, the results were horrific in my opinion. The dyes did not stick well at all and completely ignored the wax I applied. The wax just melted off :-(. When I removed the eggs from the pot I could easily rub the colours off. So I tried to do it nicely and still make them pretty… no luck :-(.
Let’s put this way. We had dyed amazing Easter eggs in the past using this technique. And although I did everything exactly as before here is what I would do to make it better next time I get to dye Easter eggs again:
- I would try to use pin heads instead of paint brushes to apply molten wax
- I would not boil the eggs in the dyes
- Therefore would use food colouring instead
Maybe you have better suggestions? Please let us know ;-).
Happy Easter everyone!