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...

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.

    Tuesday, 1 March 2011

    DIY Cupboard make-over

    I hate the thought of throwing anything away, be it glass containers, old books, pieces of pretty paper, ribbon, wood, you name it and I store it (some would call it hording but not in my eyes)... everything deserves to be restored, reawakened and re-embodied, even if its reincarnation takes place in a few months when I finally come up with an idea of what to do.

    This project is so easy, even for a person with no artistic flair, it's also easy on the pocket and could be applied to almost anything.

    • Pages from an old book
    • Podge
    • Paintbrush
    • Black paint for decorative images (optional)
    • Object you wish to apply this too (cupboard, wall etc) 
      1. Once you've decided or chosen a piece you wish to "make-over"clean it making sure there is no dust, dirt or grease on it. If it's a wooden piece smooth the wood with sandpaper, if needed, and wipe the dust off.

      2. Using your paintbrush, paint the back of a page with a layer of podge and place on the cupboard. Repeat with remaining pages, overlapping pages until the entire cupboard is covered.

      3. Paint another coat of podge over the top ensuring a smooth finish.

      4. (Optional) Paint a desired image on top of your pages once the podge has dried completely.