Sunday, 30 October 2016

Halloween Treats!


We had a Halloween party in the weekend, and I thought I would share some of my treats with you!  I made some horror cupcakes and a hot cheesy pumpkin dip.

Now I just used my usual chocolate cupcake and red velvet cupcake mixtures to make the cupcakes.  It is the decorating I wanted to share with you.

First up, I made a horror scene with broken glass and blood.  These were actually quite simple, though I did have a bit of trouble with my first batch of toffee!  It is very important to keep your eye on the mix as it's cooking - I took my eyes off it for a few minutes and it had already started to burn.  It still tasted okay, but not quite what I was after, and of course, it was a darker colour, so not what I wanted.

The second batch went much better!  I poured it onto a lightly buttered cookie tray so it could spread thin, then once it was cooled, I shattered it into shards.
I rolled fondant onto the top of each cupcake, and a dollop of raspberry jam (strained through a sieve first to remove seeds) then pushed a toffee shard through the blood.

The next batch I made, I used a special nozzle in my icing bag - you can get them from specialty stores and they look like they have lots of tiny holes in them.  These nozzles are great for creating grass or fur :)
I made some bright green buttercream and covered each cupcake in green grass, followed by a tombstone made of fondant.  I added extra icing to help prop them up.

The last thing I made, was my hot cheesy pumpkin dip!  My cheesy bread dip always goes down a treat, so I thought I'd put a twist on it and do it in a pumpkin!
I had hubby carve the top off for me and then hollowed out the seeds.

I made my dip using:

1 1/2 tubs of cream cheese
1 heaped Tablespoon of mayo
1/2 orange capsicum, diced
1/2 onion, diced
100g ham, diced (bacon works too)
a little lemon zest
season with garlic pepper and salt

Mix all of the above ingredients together and then spoon into your prepared pumpkin (or hollowed out bread)

Place the lid back on.
If you feel so inclined, you can carve a face or design into the front too.

Wrap in tinfoil and bake at 200C for 2 hours.
Serve with crackers and carrot sticks.

There you have it!  Some Halloween treats to share with your family and friends :)  Have a great week and Happy Cooking!

Sunday, 23 October 2016

Mini Meatloaves

Hey hey my lovelies!

How are we all on this fantastic long weekend?  I've been meaning to post this recipe for a few days now, and I've finally found a few spare moments to share it with you.
I was helping a friend out with some meals and this is one of the recipes she gave me - though I've altered it a smidge.  So delicious!  

Mini meatloaves

2Tbsp olive oil
2 cloves crushed garlic
1 small onion, diced
1 small cauliflower
500g pork mince
2 eggs
2tsp chinese five spice
1tsp mustard (whatever your preference)

Heat oil in a large frying pan and cook onion and garlic until softened - approx 3-5mins
Place cauli florets in a food processor to make cauliflower rice then add to the pan, cooking for a further 10 minutes, stirring frequently.  Season with salt and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine mince with eggs, mustard and spice.  Add the cauli mix and fold together.

Spoon into muffin trays or if you have those mini loaf trays you could use those.
Bake at 180C for 20-25 minutes.

Serve with some sweet chilli sauce and salad.
*These are great to freeze for later too

If you aren't a fan of pork mince, you can use beef mince, with a bit of marsala or paprika in place of the five spice.  You can also use coconut oil in place of olive oil.

So yummy and really simple to make!

Anywho, I hope you enjoy what's left of your weekend and Happy Cooking!

Friday, 7 October 2016

Bacon and Onion Bombs!

Hey hey!

A couple of nights ago, my husband showed me a video he had found on FB with a recipe for these interesting looking meatballs wrapped in onion and bacon, so I thought I would re-create these with my own recipe :) 

I will admit, it wasn't a hit with the girls - one ate the bacon from the outside and refused to eat the rest because it was onion, and the other only ate the centre.  Hubby, my son and I all thought it was delicious, though!  It was a little like eating a burger without the bun.

Here's what I did:

Bacon and Onion Bombs

500g mince
1/3C breadcrumbs
2 eggs
1Tbsp wholegrain mustard
2-3Tbsp BBQ sauce
1/4C grated cheese

Combine the above ingredients, seasoning with salt and pepper.

Grab one or two large onions, cut the ends off and slice halfway through so you can peel off layers.  this does take a bit of patience and a steady hand!
Roll a portion of mince into a ball and slide into each onion layer.

Secure two strips of streaky bacon around each ball - make sure the seam is at the bottom so it sits on the tray.

Bake in the oven at 200C for around 45mins.  Bacon should be crispy, onions softened and mince cooked through.

As you can see from the pic, a lot oozed out while cooking - but this will be a combination of melted cheese and fat from the meat.  You could omit the cheese if you prefer.

We dipped ours into sweet chilli sauce and it was divine!

This is definitely a make-again recipe for us and I hope you enjoy it too!  Have a great weekend, and Happy Cooking!

Thursday, 6 October 2016


It's the school holidays and my girls and I decided to bake some cookies today.  We had been out shopping and happened to peruse the local store, Kitchen Kapers, where you can get all kinds of fancy baking products.  It certainly inspired us!

When we got home, I jumped online and went straight to Pinterest to see if I could find a new recipe to try.  

This is what I found:

It definitely made a large batch of cookies, which you would expect when you are using that quantity of flour, however, I don't feel like they have enough flavour.  My girls love them, but they're a bit bland for me.  We made some raspberry icing to give them just that little bit more, and it seemed to do the trick.

As you can see from the pics, the cookies raised quite a lot, again, this is to be expected with that quantity of baking powder.  I rolled the dough out to around 6mm thickness, so I would probably try for even thinner next time.

Busy icing their gingerbread men :)

In my opinion, this recipe is a little too doughy tasting, but as I said earlier, the girls were quite pleased with them.  A good fun treat for the kids to make over the holidays :)

After searching recipes on Pinterest for the first time in probably a year, I have decided that I'm going to go back to trialing interesting recipes that I find online so I can share my triumphs and failures with you!

That's all I have for you now.  Enjoy the rest of your week, and Happy Cooking!