Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Today I love..............

Hi, dear friends, hope your week has been splendid. The weather here for us has been absolutely fantabulous, Spring has sprung, the birds are singing, the bees are buzzing and soon roses will be a-bloomin. Even though Alyssums are not Queen of Flowers like roses, I love them for their simplicity and loveliness. They look gorgeous (and innocent) casually placed in glass jars. I love the scent of lavender plants wafting in the breeze in my garden, can't get enough of it. Remember this chair? Maybe you don't. I have two of those randomly placed in our home. They were given to us, we use them for extra guests when we need them, or I use them for styling a lot of the times. I painted and upholstered them years ago, but they've started to look a bit tired, so I gave them a makeover, with a coat of new paint. Ta da, here it is........... its grey glory, with navy ticking fabric for its seat. I think it's given it a breath of fresh and smart air, don't you think? I got that blue "Keep Calm and Carry On" tea towel for free........ It came with the latest issue of Country Style magazine, which is full of eye-candies as usual. I also got the Women's Weekly Afternoon Tea cookbook. For someone who loves baking and lovely pictures, it was simply too hard to resist the page after page of loveliness. I've included a few sneak peeks, I'm sure you'll love them. It was not only food for the tummy, It was a feast for the eyes, all the vessels used for the yummies were downright awesome. I was pretty inspired to have an afternoon tea after all that for sure. It was hard to do what the following tea towel says to do. (wink)

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Easy Scrummy Orange Cake

I haven't posted any yummy recipes for a while. So I thought you might like this. I've always loved orange cakes, this is an extremely easy-peasy mix-all-in-one-bowl, then beat and bake type recipe. Here's the recipe:
125g butter, softened
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup orange juice
2 eggs
3/4 cup caster sugar (baker's fine sugar)
1 and 1/2 cups sifted self-raising flour
1 tablespoon finely chopped orange zest a handful orange zest thinly sliced for garnish
Orange Icing
1 cup icing sugar
2-3 tablespoons orange juice (add more if needed, mix to semi-runny consistency)

(1) Combine all cake ingredients and beat thoroughly for 3 minutes.
(2) Pour mixture into a greased 20cmx10cm loaf or 20cm ring tin.
(3) Bake in 180 degrees C oven for 30-40 minutes or until cooked.
(4) Turn onto wire rack and allow to cool.
(5) Ice with Orange Icing. Alternatively, you could ice with Cream Cheese Icing, which I personally like better because of its tang. Simply beat 100g of softened cream cheese with 2 tablespoons of sugar and 2 teaspoons of lemon juice until smooth. I even add 2 tablespoons of sour cream sometimes. Now why don't you enjoy a cuppa and some orange cake with me?These flowers are from my garden, they are winter flowering plants and so they give me a lot of joy in winter when my roses are pruned and resting. It's officially Spring here now that it's September, I'm excited and anticipating the coming back of my roses. I'm also amazed by these flowers, they look like they have nature's tassels on them! One of my children has also started a vegie "patch" by using pots, we've been enjoying her labour of love as a result. Everyday we get a beautiful bounty of her harvest, and needless to say, I'm more than happy. Home-grown vegies ARE definitely better and DO taste so much better. She has many things growing, brocolli, choy sum, strawberries, assorted fancy lettuces, spinach and spring onions; just to name a few. She still has carrot seeds she needs to plant out. Okay, I wish you all a great week, eat more vegies.