Raspberry and walnut crumble cake and rain

serverThis rainy weather is quite persistent.

It’s torrential, inhibiting and makes me want to stay inside. I got soaked walking from the car to the grocery store, even though I’d parked right out the front!

Luckily, however, I’m still unemployed (actually, the luck of my unemployment is debateable), because I have no need to go outside!

sceneThe soaking that I received in my brief trip to the shops was worth it, because I bought mushrooms for a recipe which I’ll post tomorrow. It’s hearty and warm and full of flavour, which is perfect in this weather.

Norman and superstardom

side viewThe moment has arrived. The blog is going to take off.

Norman has been immortalised.

He is now bound for superstardom. He will, no doubt, shed me once he’s famous enough to do a solo Norman act. For now I’ll ride on his coattails.

I’m sort of kidding. Norman would never leave me, just as long as I promise to keep feeding him off-cuts of pastry and brushing him so his fur stays unmatted.

And he has been immortalised. Unfortunately it wasn’t because he was scouted on the street and noticed for his handsomeness. I requested he have his likeness made into a cupcake topper.

Perfect icing and more unbirthdays!

sliceIf you read the last post, all about the unbirthday party I threw, you would have seen the cake that I posted. I’ve put up the recipe for the the cake before (here), but I haven’t posted the Swiss meringue buttercream recipe for some reason. This buttercream is gorgeously silky in texture and makes your cake look super professional.

This recipe makes enough to generously cover a sandwich cake – it will fill the gap in between the two layers and then cover the cake entirely.

Birthday recap and jam ramblings

frameI spoke about preparing for the Boy’s birthday last post. The melting moments were sent off to his work (and Instagrammed by me, obviously) and thoroughly enjoyed by his work mates. I was informed that the vanilla melting moments were better than the chocolate – the chocolate ones are too cakey, you need a glass of milk to accompany them. Duly noted!

saladThis post is just a catch up of his birthday – which means no recipe, sorry friends! The boy requested salad and a sponge cake for his birthday meal and I’m fine with doing salads, it’s the sponge that irritates me. I can whip up multi-layered cakes without too much fuss, but sponges leave me stumped for some reason.

Doughnut cakes and delicious sprinkles

side viewI’ve got a thing for doughnuts at the moment. It’s coming into Summer here, and I think I just love the idea of a cinnamon doughnut on hot days. I’m always disappointed with the quality of bakery doughnuts – why don’t they ever taste like they did when I was younger?

I’ve started to wonder whether my standards were lower on my childhood, or whether doughnuts actually did just taste better. I made mini jam doughnut cupcakes recently, which satisfied my desire for crunchy, cinnamon sweetness, but Sunday afternoon calls for something a little bit special. This cake is moist and cinnamony and really sticky! I recommend cutting it with a sharp, thin knife so that your icing doesn’t cling to the knife too much!

Blood orange coconut velvet cake and dramatic fruit

blood orangesI know, I know, the title hardly rolls off the tongue. But this cake has so much flavour going for it that I couldn’t come up with a simpler title – it is a blood orange coconut velvet cake! I’d been reading up about natural food colourings and I decided that I should put my glorious blood oranges to use. It was also a chance to use my coconut oil – I’ve officially jumped on the coconut products bandwagon!

I figured that I was changing a classic Red Velvet mixture by removing red food colouring, so I tweaked the recipe a little further by adding coconut!

60th birthdays and teddy racers

pomIt was my father’s birthday 60th today. I didn’t post much over the weekend because we had what can only be described as a Neil Quirk-athon. He played golf with my brothers and the boy on Saturday morning and we lunched afterwards. Then on Sunday he had old friends over to celebrate the big birthday.

And today I made him his grandmother’s chocolate cake. Suffice to say, he has been celebrated  to last him until he is 70.

Edible flowers and trying new foods

aboveMy last post featured quite a few edible flowers. Truth be told, not all of those edible flowers needed to be on the cake, but they looked so gorgeous that I couldn’t resist (see the recipe here.) If I had an unlimited supply of blue starflower, johnny jump ups, violets and pineapple sage, I would have only topped the cake with these four.

Unfortunately, all of these flowers are teeny tiny, and it would take a whole lot of them to cover a cake. Also, I purchased a mixed lot of flowers, so I didn’t really have a choice in what went on my cake.

Rich chocolate cake and edible flowers

sliceI have wanted to use edible flowers for so long. Pre-blog. The idea that such beautiful decorations are edible fits in well with my general approach to cooking – I don’t like things to just look good, I want them to taste good as well.


So when I stumbled across some gorgeous edible flowers at Leichhardt organic markets, I bought them on impulse.

Pear bread and Pinterest

My hunt for pear recipes was inspired by this cuteness, which I found on Pinterest. He is now my lock screen on my phone – he just makes me smile.

pinterest pear

pearMy lock screen did not go unnoticed by The Boy. Despite thinking I was crazy, the boy left me my own little smiley pear. Said smiley pear is now sitting in a display cupboard, I can’t bring myself to eat him.

This recipe was made with his friends though, I’m not sure how to break it to him…