> m.e

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Muesli bars

The New Year has well and truly began and I am welcoming 2014 with open arms and hoping that this year brings back the inspiration needed to come back here and stay for a while.

During my break from here I became comfortable in the instagram community because I love the daily pics, the creativity, the beautiful inspiring community and of course the conversations.  I love that you can post a pic and get people talking. I love that I don’t have to post a pic but I can still pop in whenever I want to and have a conversation with someone.  I love that I don’t feel like I HAVE to, but that I WANT to.  I love the support.  I love that sometimes we all share the same problems.  I love that we can help each other with our queries.  I love that there will always be someone awake at some strange hour to click a "heart" on your photo.

But you know what, I miss it here, I have been missing it for a while.  Truth is, once you are gone for some time it’s so much harder to get back.

A friend recently told me that she returned to blogging because “...I want to say more!” and it’s true, sometimes you just need to say a bit more.

So Cath, this post and recipe is especially for you.


Muesli Bars 

makes about 21 medium bars 
 
Ingredients
  • 2 cups muesli mix
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup plain flour, sifted
  • 1 cup sultanas
  • 1/2 cup pepita seeds or sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
Method
  • Preheat oven to 180C / 160C (fan) and line a 20x30cm tin with grease proof paper 
  • Place dry ingredients in a bowl and mix to combine
  • Place honey into a saucepan over medium heat and cook until runny, just a couple of minutes. Mix in the vegetable oil and brown sugar
  • Add the honey mixture to dry ingredients and mix to combine
  • Spoon into prepared tin and flatten with a spoon. Bake for about 25 minutes or until slightly golden. Cool slightly and cut into pieces 
  • Store in an airtight container

My kids are back at school on Thursday so I made these especially for them.

How are you all coping with the children going back to school, are you relieved, a little sad?

Do you have newbies starting prep this year? I think you'll definitely need a hug or two.

Please leave me a comment so I know you are here and you'd like me to hang around, I really have so much to tell you, so many recipes to share.

In the meantime, I'll be hanging out on instagram.


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Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Berrylicious ice cream recipe and a giveaway for you

As the weather warms up the kids tend to ask for something cold and yummy to enjoy after school.

Reading the ingredients labels on ice cream I feel at a loss trying to figure out what all those numbers mean, I mean really, it’s just ice cream, how many ingredients need to be in there after all.

I love to try and make everything from scratch so why not ice cream, well I had a go and using an ice cream maker made it really quick and easy.

Here’s a basic recipe I made using a Cusinart ice cream maker

Berrylicious ice cream
Makes 1 litre

Ingredients 
  •  ¾ cup whole milk
  •  ½ cup sugar or honey if you prefer
  • cups cream
  • 150grams mixed berries, thawed and slightly mashed with a fork
Method

  • Using a mixer or hand whisk, mix milk and sugar in a bowl for a few minutes until sugar has dissolved
  •  Add cream and mix until combined
  • Turn the machine on and pour the mixture into freezer bowl, and let it mix until thickened, about 25 minutes.
  •  Once the mixture starts to thicken, add the berries and continue mixing for another 5 minutes. The ice cream should have a soft, creamy texture. If a firmer consistency is desired, transfer the ice cream into an airtight container and place in the freezer for about 2 hours. Remove from freezer about 15 minutes before serving

·     Recipe can be doubled to make 2 litres of ice cream




I haven’t used an ice cream maker before so watching my cream, milk and sugar transformed into a creamy ice cream was very exciting.

The machine was easy to use and could be used at any time the family felt like ice cream, as long as the freezer bowl was chilled in the freezer for at least 12 hours.

The only downside I found was with the noise it makes, it is like having a mixer working the entire time, so midnight ice cream making would not be ideal.

As summer approaches us here in Australia it is perfect for that healthier ice cream or frozen yoghurt for the family. I’m definitely looking forward to trying out a variety of flavours.


To welcome summer and to celebrate my return here I have one cuisinart ice cream maker to give away thanks to ebay.com.au

To be in the running I would love for you to comment on this post and tell me what delicious flavour ice cream you would love make.

Thank you for all your comments, competition is now closed.

Winner chosen by random number -  

Cyndie @ Mademoiselle Slimalicious

 
Terms and conditions:
Cuisinart ice cream maker 2L capacity RRP $129.95
Competition ends 13.11.2013  11.59pm
Winner will be chosen at random 
Open to Australian residents only, please make sure a valid email address is included.
Winner will be notified by email

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Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Banana Bread...a slightly healthier version




When it comes to banana bread nothing beats this version but I wanted a healthier option so after a few attempts I came up with this.
There's no oil or white sugar and it's sweetened with honey, dried fruit and as a bonus it also has some extra hidden vegetables.


Banana Bread - a slightly healthier version
Ingredients

  • 2 eggs 
  •  100g honey 
  •  175g self raising flour 
  •  125g wholemeal flour 
  •  1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 
  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice 
  •  1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda 
  •  ½ teaspoon baking powder 
  •  3 small very ripe bananas, mashed 
  •  100ml natural yoghurt 
  • 1 medium-large carrot, grated finely (about 125g) 
  • 1 medium-large zucchini, grated finely (about 150g) 
  •  75g sultanas 
  •  75g dates, finely chopped 
  •  50g walnuts, chopped

·          
  Optional toppings 

  • Crushed walnuts 
  •  Brown sugar 
  •  Oats

Method

  • Preheat oven to 180C/160C fan, grease and line a 26cm loaf tin with baking paper 
  •  Using an electric mixer beat eggs and honey together for several minutes until light and fluffy 
  •  In the meantime, sift flours, spices, bicarbonate of soda and baking powder together in a small bowl, set aside 
  •  Add mashed bananas and yoghurt and continue whisking until incorporated 
  •  Using a wooden spoon, mix in dry ingredients until just combined 
  •  Fold in grated carrot, grated zucchini, sultanas, chopped dates and chopped walnuts until all incorporated 
  •  Spoon into prepared tin and add optional toppings if using and bake for about 1 hour and 10 minutes , test with a skewer, it should come out clean 
  •  Allow to cool slightly before removing from tin



Why use bicarbonate of soda in a recipe?  

  • Baking powder and bicarbonate of soda are both leavening agents
  • When added to a batter, the leavening agent causes air bubbles to expand when heated and therefore causing a rise
  • Bicarbonate of soda is used in recipes that contain an acidic ingredient e.g. lemon juice, sour cream, buttermilk, cocoa or honey
  • Baking soda starts to react and release carbon dioxide gas as soon as it is added to the batter and liquid is added
  • Bicarbonate of soda has a slightly different quality to that of baking powder when used in baking
  • It can have a slightly tangy or soapy taste and it makes a lovely golden colour, think of it used in the making of honeycomb
  • It gives cakes a very specific texture unable to be achieved with baking powder
  • It needs to be sifted well and measured precisely to avoid the bitter taste



Do you like to hide veggies as well?
What's your favourite hidden veggie recipe?
Are you baking today?


Whatever you are up to today, I hope you enjoy each moment ♥

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Monday, September 17, 2012

Natural Red Velvet Cupcakes with beetroot



I get asked a lot at markets what a red velvet cake is and despite what many people think, it’s not just a vanilla cake with red food colouring.

Red velvet cakes contain buttermilk and a small amount of cocoa powder. These ingredients give the cake a subtle and very distinctive flavour which makes it different to a chocolate or vanilla cake.

The original red velvet cake is said to have had a reddish hue that was caused by the reaction between natural cocoa powder and an acidic ingredient, like buttermilk.

Nowadays the intense red hue mostly comes from red food colouring.

If you have been following on instagram you would have noticed a few trials for natural red velvet cupcakes with beetroot.
Good news, the kids loved them and even though they know they contain beetroot they don't seem to mind. 


Here's the recipe:

Natural Red Velvet Cupcakes
Makes about 12 Cupcakes

Ingredients

  • 100g self raising flour 
  • 30g almond meal* 
  • 20g beetroot powder ***
  • 15g natural cocoa 
  • 1 tsp baking powder 
  • 100g pureed raw beetroot 
  • ½ teaspoon vinegar 
  • ½ cup buttermilk** 
  • 110g sugar 
  • 150ml vegetable oil 
  • 1 egg 
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

 
Method

  • Preheat oven to 180C/160C fan. Line a 12 cup cupcake pan with cupcake papers 
  • Sift dry ingredients together and set aside 
  • Grate peeled raw beetroot and puree it in food processor or use a hand held blender, combined with the vinegar and buttermilk so it becomes a fine texture 
  • Using an electric mixer, cream the oil, sugar and vanilla for a few minutes then beat in eggs one at a time, mixing until combined 
  • Alternate adding dry and wet ingredients to the creamed mixture, mix until combined 
  • Spoon batter into cupcake papers, about 2/3 filled. Bake in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes. Test with a skewer 
  • Remove from oven and cool completely before icing





Cream Cheese Icing
Ingredients
  • 150g butter, room temperature
  • 250g cream cheese, room temperature
  • 350g icing sugar, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Method

  • Beat butter and cream cheese until well combined 
  •  Add vanilla and sift in 1 cup of icing mixture and beat until combined. Then sift in the remaining sugar and mix until smooth and thick, about 8 minutes.


* If you don’t want to add nuts then just replace the almond meal amount with self raising flour
**How to make buttermilk: Pour 1 tablespoon of vinegar in a cup and then fill up to 1 cup with milk, set aside for about 10 minutes at room temperature. For this recipe use ½ a tablespoon of vinegar to make ½ cup. You will notice curdled looking milk, that's your buttermilk
*** Beetroot powder available from health food stores or online


The colour in these isn't as vibrant as the food colouring ones, but that doesn't matter does it, they are natural!

Have you made any with beetroot, did you like them.

Have you got any tips?

What are you having for dinner tonight...just curious :P

Have a super week ♥ 
 
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