Tuesday, 1 November 2011

A little bit of this and that

Below are a variety of things I have been making the past while.

Swiss Roll filled with mixed berry mousse

Lavash Bread accompanied with philledelphia cheese and sweet chilli sauce

Mini Pita breads accompanied with chicken strips and humus

Berry mousse petit fours and White Chocolate petit fours

Chocolate Buttermilk cake garnished with white chocolate roses

Shortbread cookies

Chocolate chip cookies and chocolate biscotti

Mini feta and spinach quiche

Mini pecan nut tarts

Monday, 31 October 2011

Kitchen Chaos these past few months

Time flies way too fast for my liking. It had been 2 weeks since my last post which turned into 2 months and now I look again and it’s been almost 6 months. My life has been very chaotic these past few months, hence the lack of blogging. I have “recently” moved back to Pretoria, Jacaranda city- which are in full bloom right now, absolutely beautiful and quite delightful (a new word that I have picked up the last two weeks and find myself using quite often).

For a quick update on what my blog has missed out on this past while:

My sons 1st birthday party- a carnival themed affair which I thoroughly enjoyed planning and sharing with everyone who has been a part of his very busy first year. 

Other than my son the birthday cake had to be my pride and joy, it was my very first novelty cake. A three tear circus tent chocolate cake with caramel and vanilla Italian buttercream icing, one word AMAZING!!!! 

A few tasty snacks- phyllo parcels filled with mince, spicy chicken phyllo pies

FBI School of Pastry- I enrolled at the Food and Beverage Institute School of Pastry to complete a Diploma in Pastry, which I am still busy with and finish end of November. 

Chocolate Garnishes

Mini Frangipan Tarts

Small Croquemboche 
A small French style wedding cake made from a tower of choux puffs filled with pastry cream.

Milk Tart

Puff pastry cheese straws

Mille Fouile
Puff pastry stack filled with strawberries and cream cheese mousse


Filled with raisin, cinnamon, sugar, roasted almonds


Variety of breads
Brioche loaf, health loaf, filled rolls, Portuguese rolls, hot cross buns, chelsea buns 

Bridesmaid duties- I was asked to be a bridesmaid for a very beautiful bride- to-be and was very busy planning the kitchen tea a month ago, for which I made the cake. The bride-to-be is a bit of a nutter so we decided that a Mad Hatter Tea Party was the way to go, which was complemented with the topsyturvey cake I made.

Pastry Master- With my Diploma almost behind my name I figured that I best start planning what it is I’m going to do with all the knowledge I’ve accumulated. Being a mom it makes it a bit difficult for me to get a Pastry Chef job that requires me to work ridiculous hours, so I figured why not start my own little baby company where my time is my own and more flexible. Pastry Master is what I’ll be known as doing cakes, sweet and savoury pastries, small functions and events. I’m so excited at this point in time I don’t know where to begin, my mind is racing with ideas and thoughts of what I want to do.  So stay tuned for what’s to come and hopefully I’ll blow your mind.

Saturday, 2 April 2011

DIY Wall Art

Remember the DlIY Cupboard make-over I posted a while a ago? Well that was part of a little face lift I gave our room along with some wall art to liven up the room. My inspiration came from those vinyl wall stickers you can buy- I was browsing the web and came across so many different ones i liked. So I got my creative cap on and decided to make my own design and paint it on the wall... I chose a few different pictures from the web that I liked and combined them into one piece.

This was such a fun project for me and very calming. Once I was done I took a step backwards and was filled with such a warm fuzzy feeling when i looked at it.

You to can create something similar to your own specifications. All you need is black wall paint (or any colour of your choice) and some brushes. I hand drew my picture onto the wall, but if you don't feel confident in your drawing skills then you can make a stencil of your desired image and stencil it onto the wall.

Thursday, 31 March 2011

Love in a pastry cup

Yesterday for lunch I was inspired by a number of recipes and couldn't bring myself to choose one... So I combined them and ended up making phyllo cups full of goodness... These are perfect as starters or finger foods at a party...

Feta Phyllo cups

Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius. Cut out squares of phyllo pastry, lightly brush with melted butter and arrange in a greased muffin pan (layer plus minus 5 squares on top of each other). Bake for 5- 10 minutes, or until golden. Fry finely chopped onion and garlic until onion softens. Add butternut, brown sugar, ground cumin and ground nutmeg; cook until butternut is tender. Stir in spinach, cooked shredded chicken and crumbled feta cheese. Spoon mixture into phyllo pastry cups and top with crumbled feta cheese.

Yum Yum Yum... enjoy...xxx

Friday, 18 March 2011

The munchies = Crunchies

 My better half aka mr munchies has always got his head in the fridge and in the cupboards looking for a snack attack... he always wants "something"... one of his favourite munchies is crunchies...

What a tasty recipe that's ready in minutes and in my house gone in minutes...


  • 150g butter
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tbl spoons syrup
  • 1 t bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 cups of oats
  • 1/2 cup flour 
  • 1/2 cup desiccated coconut

Melt butter, syrup and sugar in a saucepan over low heat. Once ingredients have melted add bicarbonate of soda and stir until the mixture froths. 

Mix sugar mixture with dry ingredients.

Flatten mixture on a greased baking tray.

Bake at 180 degrees celcius for 20- 30 minutes (until golden brown)

Remove from oven and cut into squares, leave to cool. For those of you with a sweet tooth add chocolate icing on top- to top it off!

Chocolate icing
  • 2 t butter
  • 1 1/2 cup icing sugar
  • 1 tbl spoon cocoa
  • 2 tbl spoon boiling water
Melt butter and add to dry ingredients. Add boiling water and mix thoroughly until smooth. Add extra water if too thick.

Spread chocolate icing over baked crunchie mixture, put in the fridge to set a bit then cut into squares.


Wednesday, 16 March 2011

DIY Coasters

I love to doodle all over scrap bits of paper... i doodle when i talk on the phone, i doodle on my hands, i used to doodle on the tables at school- didn't we all! And a quirky quote always brings a smile to my face... So I combined the two onto a few small square tiles and this is what I got...

What you need:
  • 4-6 small (coaster size) square tiles
  • Permanent marker
  • 16 (4 coasters) or 24 (6 coasters) round adhesive sponge/rubber stoppers (to avoid tiles scratching surfaces)
  • Doodle cap

I find that when you're not concentrating on what to "doodle", like when chatting to a friend on the phone, it comes a lot easier than when you sit down to draw something simple yet still pretty enough to put on display. So get your doodle cap on and start creating pretty images on your tiles with cute quotes to match.

Doodle some pretty pictures on your tiles. If you're not happy with what you've drawn do not fear... just use some thinners to remove the permanent marker and redraw...

Once you're happy with your images stick on the stoppers- one on each corner... and bob's your uncle you have a new handmade set of coasters... lovely for gifts as well!

Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Nutella that twists my arm

my little person + crying = frustrating times... baking + me and jack johnson = realxing times... chocolate + pastry = happy times... when i need to relax i bake... when i'm slightly tipsy i bake... when i have nothing to do i bake... i love to bake... i love the kitchen... the kitchen is definitely the heart of the home and my favourite place to be in the house...

This recipe is for my dear friend Amanda aka Manuel...

Nutella twists... yummmmm


  • 2 rolls ready-rolled puff pastry
  • flour for dusting
  • 1/2 cup nutella
  • 75g sprinkle nuts, toasted
  • 1 egg (lightly beaten with 2T milk)
  • 1t cinnamon
  • 2t sugar


Preheat oven to 200 degrees celcius.

Roll out the pastry on a floured surface.

Spread the nutella over one sheet of pastry and sprinkle nuts over.

Top with a second sheet of pastry and brush on egg wash.

Sprinkle cinnamon and sugar on top. Cut into 2-3cm wide strips. Take hold of each end of a strip and twist it so it makes a spiral shape. If you not to amped to do the twist at first then simply cut out shapes using a cookie cutter or cut into squares. Transfer to a floured baking tray and bake for 10-15 minutes or until puffed up and golden brown. (my twists weren't perfect but when baked they were beautiful)

They go down so well with a cup of hot chocolate. Chocolate on chocolate mmmmmmmmmmmm......

Monday, 7 March 2011

Inspirational love

So my one and only, my better half, my melon head, the one person who knows me best is also the person who's made me more in touch with the environment and made me more aware of natures beauty. He's a real tree hugger... he could spend all day and all night in the garden- potting, re-potting, clipping, watering, giving his plants love... he inspires me.

Being in the garden with him makes me want to put everything I see and feel onto canvas.. or paper... and translate it into something wonderful.

He doesn't know this, and neither did I until I thought deeper about it, but I think that when I decided to start this piece I sat down, looking at the blank canvas, and thought about what would impress him most.

While busy with the piece I was always checking out the corner of my eye to see if he was taking note of what I was painting, what changes I'd made, to see if he liked what I was doing... very school-girlish of me! But thats what love does, no matter how old you are or how long you've been together.

I was trying to sell this piece but I think I'll keep it and dedicate it to my person, to our love thats as strong as a tree that's been standing for ages and will stand the test of time, to our loyalty to each other thats like the roots of an ancient tree, so deep no-one or nothing will uproot us... lovies you 

Saturday, 5 March 2011

Phyllo Fun

I love love love phyllo pastry!!! anything made from phyllo is scrumptious- desserts, pies... even pizza...

A while ago I read a recipe for a phyllo pizza but can't remember where... so I came up with my own...

And the best thing about this recipe is its so basic, quick and tastes oooohhhhhhh so good.


  • 7 sheets of phyllo pastry
  • 5 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 7 tablespoons finely grated parmesan cheese, divided
  • 3 tablespoons tomato passata  
  • 2 cups grated mozzarella cheese
  • crushed garlic (amount depends on your personal preference)
  • 2 cooked chicken breasts, roughly chopped
  • feta cheese
  • salt, pepper, dried oregano to taste
  • avocado (optional)

Brush a baking pan with some melted butter

Lay a sheet of phyllo pastry in the pan, folding the edges in to fit (keep the other sheets of phyllo covered with a damp tea towel to avoid drying out)

 Brush phyllo with melted butter and sprinkle evenly with one tablespoon of parmesan cheese

Repeat layers five times folding edges in every time, top with last sheet of phyllo; folding edges in, brush with melted butter

    Spread tomato passata evenly, sprinkle  with mozzarella cheese and garlic, arrange chicken pieces and feta over the mozzarella. 

    Sprinkle with salt, pepper, oregano, mozzarella cheese and remaining parmesan cheese.

    Bake in preheated oven at 200 degrees celcius for 18-22 minutes or until edges are golden brown.

    Add avocado to serve.

    This recipe can be easily altered to meet your desires. Get creative and play with different toppings.