Thursday, April 24, 2014

100 Happy Days, Week 1

On Wednesday of last week I started the 100 Happy Days challenge.

I'd been looking for a thankful/grateful project to do for a while, and felt I needed to do something to remind me that good things DO happen, everyday!

Wednesday: The kids went to play next door. They love the kids next door. I had time to get the washing off the line before it rained. I found myself quite happy to stand and watch the rain when it did fall. 
Thursday: When I saw it, I could hardly believe it. A graffiti free skate park, the council did an awesome clean up job.
Friday: This is Izzy dancing, pretending she is a munchkin from the Wizard of Oz. She is such a card, this cracked me up, I laughed so hard.
Saturday: As skeptical as I was when Brett started drilling a hole in my sink, I am happy with my rain water tap in the kitchen, filtered too. 
Sunday: Because, wine.
Monday: Brett took the girls out for the morning, I made stirfry for lunch and sat and watched tv the whole time.
Tuesday: I really did have a shit day Tuesday. A walk with the kids, getting some fresh air was just what I needed.
Wednesday: Yesterday I took friends to Keith to pick up their car which had broken down before Easter. It was a 500km round trip. Thankfully my SIL looked after the girls, which made it an easier trip than it could have been. It was nice to go on a road trip on my own. I stopped just before I got back to SILs house and took a photo of the amazing clouds.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Chilli Oil

I grew one chilli plant this year. One more than I have ever grown. One was enough.

I froze a bag full to use later on for something! I can't see myself using in cooking for all of us. These babies are hot, even the green ones. Maybe when I get the urge I'll make some hot sauce or chilli jam or something.

I do love chilli oil drizzled on my soup in winter, some extra warmth and I love that bit of flavour. It's not too bad on fried eggs either or pasta.

The new and the old(on the right). I made the old with red chillies I got from my sister in laws garden a year ago. I may have used too many chillies in this years, it's a bit hot already.
I just keep topping up the oil during the year as I use it up.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Apple and roasted quince cake

I found this recipe on Kidspot. I've changed it to suit what I have in my fridge and pantry like I usually do. The original had buttermilk and butter, which I am not in the habit of buying. But you could use if you do have them.

What I had was quinces given to me. This is a great way to use up fruit that is ripe and in need of being used.

Due to my oven being a total cow, well the oven door which won't close properly to be exact, I cooked the cake for a bit longer than the 40 minutes. When I gently push the middle of the cake and it springs back up, I know it is done.

125 grams margarine
1 cup caster sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup apple puree
1/2 cup roasted quince puree*
1/2 tsp vanilla essence
250 gr plain flour
1 tsp bicarb soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup of milk

Cream butter and sugar.
Beat in eggs, puree and vanilla.
Sift flour, salt, cinnamon and bicarb of soda. Fold through flour and milk alternatively.
Bake at 180C for 40 minutes.

*Peel, core and quarter quince, cut quarters in half. Place in a pan, sprinkled with sugar and dotted with margarine. Squeeze over the juice of 1 orange. Cover with foil and bake for 2 hours at 150C.

Alternatively you could use 1 cup of any pureed fruit you want. I have used pear and a mix of apple and passionfruit.

It is a lovely cake which is so beautiful with just a dollop of cream.