Saturday, December 8, 2012


Quiche, easy peasy and no recipe needed? I think yes.
Don't think too hard about quiches, just think scrambled eggs with some additions.

Blind bake your puff pastry, then bake for another 5 mins.
I like to leave a nice pastry overhang for extra goodness.
Add your ingredients and cook for a good 30-40 mins on 180 degrees.

Ingredients guide:
About 4-6 eggs depending on the size of dish
A good pour of cream and a teaspoon of Lemon Pepper and a bit of salt
Meats: Ham, Bacon, Salami, Prosciutto 
Veg: Red/White Onion, Shallots, Spinach, Capsicum, Olives, Chives
Additional: Chopped Cream cheese, pine nuts, other herbs

I love using my Maxwell & Williams Microstoven dish. The quiche, or whatever you cook, does not stick to the dish, so I don't need to grease. If you have never seen Microstoven, you must look it up. You know how Jamie Oliver always cooks in a dish and then puts it into the oven? This is the stuff you can use. Which is the only reason why I bought it. Can be used in the microwave, on the stove top and in the oven. Genius!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

So This Is Christmas... 2012

Here it is.... Christmas In Our Home 2012. December has come around so fast this year and I won't be putting any more than a little energy into all things festive this year. It's been a big year. (Full stop: I could say no more) But that is not to say that I won't whip out some awesome yummy treats and play around with a little bit of Christmas fun.

I am least motivated about Christmas decorating this year, so as a result, I found an awesome branch from our backyard and have used it as our tree this year. I love this simple look. My colour theme is red, white and silver. Simply decorated with a couple of decorations and a single strip of white led lights from Ikea. 

Do note our little Christmas Tonttu to the right, she reports back to Santa every night if the children have been naughty or nice. 

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

My 30th Birthday Celebration

I held my birthday party to honor the special family and friends who are and have been a special part in my life. Turning the big  3 0 has always been an occasion that I have looked forward too. 

The last 30 years have been so full of twists and turns; so many ups and downs; marriage, babies, mortgages... trials, errors, so many lessons learnt. It is nice to turn a new leaf with the fresh feeling of 30! Now I am living life in my prime... and the best bit?

It feels like life is only just beginning and I am excited because
I know that the best is yet to come!

I wanted to have a wine bar so we could enjoy having wine tastings. This was so much fun and I was so happy with the result. We enjoyed 9 wines for tasting. I was happy to guide my loved ones through the tasting steps and give them a little more insight into the wonderful world of wine tastings.

For an afternoon on the deck nothing could make me happier than a good glass of wine and a gourmet cheese platter with all the trimmings.

We enjoyed platters filled with all the yummy things you could hope for: soft/hard cheese, pate, crackers, olives, apricots, figs, cocktail onions, gherkins, artichokes, prosciutto, special deli ham and salami. Yum!

Non-alcoholic options best enjoyed with a lime green vintage striped paper straw, of course.

My mum made me a beautiful traditional (in our family anyway) Finnish birthday cake. A sponge cake with layers of jam, cream, strawberries, bananas and something orange (yet to ask mum)... Absolutely yummy. Nothing beats homemade, in my books, and it was delicious, thanks mum!

I love lolly buffets, I have been admiring them for a long time. My friend had one for her 30th and I thought it was a fabulous idea. And why not? They aren't just for weddings. I bought beautiful vintage style paper cupcake cups that guests could scoop their goodies into and enjoy at their leisure. Fun.

Thank-You again to all my family and friends for bringing your beautiful happy spirits into our home. Thank-you for the gifts, they are muchly appreciated. 

I certainly had an afternoon I will never forget and had an absolute blast. It was truly everything that I could have wished for.

Peace out! Love you all!

I must say a special mention to Ursula from Us In Time who took care of all the photography for me. Well worth taking the pressure off everyone else to get great photos. Thanks Ursula!Visit her WEBSITE HERE

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Jonah's Batman 5th Birthday Party

Batman was the theme this year and it also seemed like Batman themed items weren't widely available either, so without jumping on the fantastic party sites and ordering themed items, I improvised where I could.

Look up "comic book words" on Google to get some cool print outs that can be used on the lolly bags. I also hot glue gunned them onto toothpicks to make the action words come alive on the food table.

Simple things on the food table kept the children happy. 
I used my boys' superhero toys as decorations where I could.

The cake was a simple butter cake mix, with 3 colored layers: black, blue and yellow. Worked a treat and always a nice surprise!

BUT whats a Batman party without the man himself?!

The kids were highly entertained for a good hour straight while Batman took them through the courses of superhero training. All completed the training course and received a sword to fight the bad guys at the end.
A fantastic entertainment option for any kids party. I didn't have to organize any games or prizes. And the children were all entertained so I could set up the food table with no stress. 

I highly recommend Super Steph Brisbane Superheros!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Marvellous Creations

My favourite indulgence are the new range of treaties from Cadbury.
They are scrumdiddlyumscious!

Yummy Cadbury choc, with jelly bits, like jelly baby bits but jellier, and cruchie bits through.

And here we have jelly, popping candy and beanies.
A nice surprise with the popping candy, beanies, like Smarties but with Cadbury chocolate, so you get the crunch of the sugar shell, with the beloved jelly bits too.

There is another flavour that they are yet to release in a bar... sneaky Cadbury!! Oh and to conclude, my favourite is definitely the top one.

Both these photos are taken in my car: nothing like driving and enjoying a treat at the same time.
Just my little indulgence. My little time out. 
Whats your indulgence? Anything scrumptious for some time out?

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Scandinavian Apple Cake

I bought a big box of apples. Too many to eat on their own, so found an amazing recipe for an amazing cake. A Scandinavian apple cake to be precise. I have a soft spot for all things Scandinavian so this was a must try.

I was bought up with "coffee and cake", so when Finnish baking comes to mind it is filled with lots of sugar, cream, spices of cinnamon, vanilla, cardamon and so on... This recipe doesn't disappoint.

I used 5 small to medium sized apples for this recipe. Simply cored and cut.

The result is a deliciously sweet light to medium density cake strewn with soft melt in your mouth apple pieces and topped off with a toasty caramalised hit of sugar and spices. Yum!

Well worth a try and very easy. Tip: I was concerned about the apple skin because I find it off putting when I get apple skin from those tins of baking apples. But they were as soft as butter, so leave the skin on, it is the healthiest bit you know.

This recipe was found on [Cook Almost Anything]
If you want this delicious recipe, click on the picture below and it will take you straight to the page. Enjoy!

Do you notice how I rarely have a photo of my whole cake? It seems we (meaning I) am too excited to cut in and see how it tastes before I think about taking my photos.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Resourceful Italian Tomato Sauce

I don't buy meals in a jar, I also don't buy those sachets of stuff that you just add water to create a meal. I enjoy cooking from basic goodness. Tin stuff, of course I buy. Fresh is best where it can be used*. So here is a basic pasta sauce using what I could find from my garden and freezer.

I was given a whole heap of tomatoes that I couldn't see being used before they started to turn, so I simply froze them whole. I also froze some left over chopped up onion. These are added into the saucepan with some frozen tomato paste. I should have cooked the onion first, but the sauce still tasted fine. Then I added some basil and oregano. Eggplant and zucchini. Season and add garlic, you need garlic. Although I wouldn't recommend too much eggplant, it can be a bit overpowering. Once cooked and everything was soft, I blitzed it in a blender to get a nice saucy consistency. 

Too easy! And you know it is full of healthy goodness.
*I think frozen fresh is just as good as fresh not frozen :-O

Monday, January 30, 2012

Freezer Queen

I sometimes refer to myself as a bit of a freezer queen. I freeze anything and everything (well almost). It may seem common knowledge to most, but there are still alot of people around that don't use their freezing power to the full extent that they should. 

So here are my best tips for saving money & reducing waste by freezing the simple things that tend to get thrown away. These are all tried and tested common practices in our own home.

1. Don't waste the contents of CANNED FOODS: weigh the left over contents in a snap lock bag, then mark the weight and date. No need for waste. These can include: tinned tomatoes, soups, beans, etc.

2. Don't let FRESH HERBS go to waste: My most favorite freezing trick. Pick, wash and preferably de-stem any bunch of herbs that you have. Place in a freezer bag and pop in the freezer. BUT THIS IS THE BEST BIT * Pull the bag out of the freezer, work quickly while the leaves are still frozen and bash the bags contents on the bench. All of the frozen leaves smash and you have perfect fresh finely chopped herbs. Works perfect with basil, parsley, mint, oregano.

3. CAKES AND SWEETS: It may come as a surprise to you that with almost ALL of my baking once a cake has cooled in my house, it is cut into quarters and frozen for when guests come around. Freezing is the best way to ensure freshness every time you want to enjoy AND you never have those last wasted pieces. My boys and husband aren't huge sweet fans. So I can still indulge in baking and have something yummy when the occasion calls for it. Works great with Pulla, Cake, Pikelets, Cakey Slices, Muffins, not so much cupcakes cause the wrappers come off. 

4. FREEZING MEALS: This is just commonsense. Make a big batch and freeze. We only ever make Bolognaise (spelling?) in a HUGE batch, so that we always have a freezer stocked with the stuff. I also love making a huge batch of Potato Mash: this stuff freezes great it you use cream instead of milk to mash. PERFECT for a super fast side to a meal. I go straight from freezer to microwave with this.

5. Does your TOMATO PASTE always get thrown out before you can finish it? If you can start to freeze just one thing, this is it! Empty the whole jar into a snap lock bag. Seal it and lay flat on the bench. Smooth out so that the contents are flat like a pancake. Lay flat in the freezer and simply break off what you need when you are cooking ~ so great!

6. PARMESAN CHEESE is expensive, freeze it. Grate or slice from frozen, easy! This also works for any of your standard block cheeses.

7. I rarely use GINGER so peeled and froze mine, so I can easily grate some when needed. Saves money!

8. FRESH FRUIT AND VEGETABLES are not worth wasting, when you have a veggie garden you can get alot of excess too. Squeeze lemons and oranges: freeze the juice. Peel and chop vegetables and freeze: worked well for pumpkin, onions, carrots, shallots, beans and peas. Mulberries and berries freeze well. Bananas are great to freeze when too far gone to eat, perfect for cakes and muffins! Excess tomatoes are great diced and frozen ready to add to meals.

9. Lastly, our BREAD is also another thing that goes straight into the freezer. Defrost when pieces are needed, you never have waste and always have fresh bread :-)

I hope that even just one of these tips have inspired you to use your freezer more and reduce waste in your kitchen. 

I would love to hear any other things you might freeze.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Happy New Year 2012

Hello, I am a little late celebrating the new year on my blog... it has taken me this long to recover from a very exhausting Christmas. And recover I did at the beach house. There is nothing like endless days in the sun.

A shell collectors delight
I love the new year, it always feel good to put the last year behind you and start all over again. I always have positive views for what the year ahead may hold. My biggest focus will be maintaining a balance in life. There are a few exciting events that will unfold this year. And for those who know me well.... having another baby will NOT be one of them. So don't get any ideas there (we are well and truly done in that department of life).

Enjoying Heaven On Earth
For the start of this year I am going to focus my blogs on some of my money saving ways and more importantly ways of being a little more resourceful in the kitchen and around the home.