Little News

Easter Cupcakes!

Posted on April 13, 2017 by Jennifer Porter

150g butter
1 ½ cups castor sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
2½ cups self-raising flour
1¼ cups milk

Topping
1 1/2 cups chocolate icing sugar
1 knob of butter, softened (approx. 10g)
2 Tbsp hot water (approx.)
Dark chocolate curls or flakes, mini Easter eggs to decorate or make coloured fondant eggs

Method:

Beat butter in an electric mixer until smooth, add Chelsea Caster Sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Add eggs and mix well. Add the vanilla, flour and milk. Beat until smooth.

Place individual paper baking cups in a cupcake tin, spoon in mixture until they are about 2/3 full - you should get 24 cupcakes (don't overfill as they will 'peak'). Bake in the oven at 190°C for 20 minutes or until golden. While cupcakes are cooling on a wire rack, prepare icing.

Icing:
Measure icing sugar into a bowl, add butter and hot water, mix until smooth. Icing should spread easily; if too thick add a little more hot water to allow it to spread easily. To decorate: Spread chocolate icing thickly on to cooled cupcakes. Arrange chocolate pieces around the outer edges, pushing gently into the icing. Finish by placing mini eggs in the centres.

12 Days of Christmas tips and tricks- Day 11!

Posted on December 09, 2016 by Jennifer Porter

How cute are these reindeer hand cards!? Perfect as a thoughtful homemade option to Christmas cards!

You will need:

Brown Non-toxic acrylic paint – found at any local craft store
Card stock paper
Non – toxic Glue
Hole Punch
Red Ribbon
Bobbly eyes
Red, black or pink small pom poms for the nose

 

Use a thick brown card stock, or simply paint some white card stock with brown paint. Trace your child’s hand print, and cut out. Make 2 holes, one at the top to tie the ribbon, and another just above the thumb to tie on the antlers (pipe cleaners). Decorate as you’d like!

12 Days of Christmas tips and tricks Day 10! Pine cone Christmas trees

Posted on December 09, 2016 by Jennifer Porter

 

These little green pine cone Christmas trees are so cute and fun to make with the kids this Christmas. They would make a perfect centre piece at any Christmas dinner table!

You will need:

-Small ceramic pots

-glue

-a paint brush

-pine cones

-green paint

-glitter

Method:

Simply paint the pots any colour you like and the pine cones green, cover in silver or white glitter and glue the bottom of the cones into the pots. 

 

 

 

 

12 Days of Christmas tips and tricks- Day 9! The perfect Ham glaze

Posted on December 09, 2016 by Jennifer Porter

For those of you planning on serving a Christmas Ham this year, this is the recipe for you! 

  • 1 whole bone-in ham
  • about 70 whole cloves

Brown Sugar Glaze

  • ½ cup soft brown sugar
  • ¼ cup maple syrup or golden syrup
  • ¼ cup rum, pineapple juice or apple juice

Preheat oven to 150ºC. Place ham on a large oven tray and warm in oven for 10-15 minutes until the skin starts to loosen (this helps it peel off easily). While the ham is warming, make Brown Sugar Glaze by mixing together all ingredients.

Remove ham from oven and increase temperature to 180ºC. Cut through skin around shank then peel off ham skin by gently pushing your fingers between skin and fat. Discard the skin.

Use a sharp knife to lightly score the fat in diagonal crosshatches. Insert a clove at each of the points where the crosshatches intersect. Brush ham all over with Brown Sugar Glaze and bake until golden (about 1 hour), basting with remaining glaze as needed.

Serve hot or at room temperature. Store unused ham in the fridge wrapped in a damp muslin bag or a clean teatowel soaked in water or lemonade.

12 Days of Christmas tips and tricks- Day 8! Shortbread

Posted on December 09, 2016 by Jennifer Porter

Shortbread is such a classic christmas treat, perfect with a cup of tea or given as a gift for those people who you don't know what to buy for!

Ingredients:

2 cups plain flour
½ tsp baking soda
1 Tbsp ground ginger 
1 cup Chelsea Soft Brown Sugar or Chelsea Dark Cane Sugar
150g butter, cubed
1 egg, beaten
1 Tbsp Chelsea Golden Syrup

Icing
1 egg white
1 ½ cups Chelsea Icing Sugar
1 tsp lemon juice

Lollies or currants to decorate

Method:

Preheat oven to 180°C bake (160°C fan-forced). Line two baking trays with baking paper. 

Place the flour, baking soda, ginger and sugar in a bowl or food processor. Add butter and rub in with fingertips or pulse in food processor until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add egg and golden syrup and stir or pulse to mix. If the dough is sticky, add a little more flour until it forms a workable dough. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. 

Roll out on a lightly floured surface or between two sheets of baking paper until 5mm thick. Cut out shapes using biscuit cutters and place on trays. Form leftover dough into a ball and re-roll and repeat cutting out until dough is used up. 

Bake for 8-10 minutes until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack. 

Icing
Make icing by beating egg white with a fork until frothy. Fold in the other ingredients and place icing in a resealable bag. Snip off the corner and pipe decorations onto each biscuit. Use icing to attach lollies or currants.

 

12 Days of Christmas tips and tricks, Day Seven! Christmas Cake

Posted on November 13, 2016 by Jennifer Porter

Christmas Cake is a classic at this time of year and is perfect to keep in the cupboard for any visitors who pop in as a seasonal treat, this goes perfectly with a cup of coffee or tea in the afternoon.

Ingredients:

250g butter
2 cups White Sugar
2kg mixed dried fruit
1 cup sherry
2 tsp mixed spice
2 tsp baking soda
4 Tbsp Golden Syrup or Treacle
4 eggs
450g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 Tbsp orange zest 

Method:

Heat butter, sugar, fruit, sherry, spice, baking soda and syrup into a saucepan. Heat over a medium heat for 2 minutes, stirring often. Allow to cool fully (at least 1 hour).
Heat oven to 125°C conventional bake. Grease 2 x deep 20cm tins (or 2 x regular 30cm tins) and triple line with baking paper ensuring the paper extends up the sides beyond the tin. 
Beat eggs and stir through cooled fruit mixture. Sift dry ingredients, fold into fruit mixture with orange zest. 
Spoon into tins, bake for approx. 3 -3 ½ hours or until cooked when tested with a skewer. Decorate once cool.
Tip: Place a double layer of baking paper across top of tin to prevent cake browning too quickly (avoiding contact with cake mixture).
Note: We have updated this recipe to make it easier to bake by spreading it across two cake tins. You can still make it as one cake, just allow for a longer cooking time (approx. 4 hrs) and check it regularly.

Store in an air tight container in a cool, dry place. Will keep for at least a year and stays deliciously moist.

 

12 Days of Christmas, Day Six- Easy Christmas Garland

Posted on November 13, 2016 by Jennifer Porter

This Christmas craft is so easy and simple its perfect for all ages- and looks super cute! All you need is a few recycled christmas bags and some string!

Step One: Cut circles out of two different coloured Christmas bags 

Step Two: Tape string to ONE circle and continue to do this along the string

Step Three: Once the string has been attached to one side of the circles, glue circles to the other side of the already positioned circles to attach

This Garland could be perfect for leftover Christmas bags to hang for New Years as well!

 

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