Monthly Archives: December 2012

Affogato with Crushed Candy Cane Toppings

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When I was in Adelaide last month for the Eat Drink Blog conference, I had affogato from Hudson Coffee right after arriving at the airport to rejuvenate myself after a long journey from Orange to Adelaide. It was my first try at affogato. Travelling makes you try something new and become adventurous. I could have had my usual cafe latte or ice coffee…but affogato sounded better on that day. Especially it turned out to be a potent hit of caffeine with a side of ice cream. That sounds really good, no?

 I came back from Adelaide with the desire to recreate affogato at home. How can something so simple turns out to be so delightful? To stay with the Christmas theme, I bedecked my affogato with crushed minty candy cane. This will make a perfect ending to a feast, believe me.

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Affogato with Crushed Candy Cane Toppings

What you’ll need to make 2 x affogato:-

  • Freshly brewed espresso coffee (I prepared mine using the Expressi Coffee machine. One coffee pod yielding 100ml/3 fl ounces of espresso is sufficient to make 2 cafe latte glasses of affogato)
  • 4 generous scoops of vanilla ice cream (or vanilla gelato) – 2 scoops for each glass
  • 1 small candy cane, crushed

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Method:-

Crush candy cane with a heavy bottom pan or stove top kettle. Set aside.  Brew espresso either the stove top method or like me, running your coffee machine. After the espresso is brewed, scoop ice cream into latte glasses and pour espresso into the glass (see Note 1). Sprinkle with some crushed candy cane and serve immediately.

Note 1: Use good quality glasses like heat resistant ones or mugs or small bowls for serving in case you break the vessel with the differing temperature i.e. frozen cold ice cream and piping hot espresso.

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To all my fabulous readers, I wish you all a Merry, Merry Christmas and safe holidays! :)

   

Gift Wrapping Ideas {With Brown Paper}

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Shopping for gifts is a big task but when it comes to gift wrapping, it is the best part! This is when you can get your creative juices flow freely and I love seeing beautifully packaged gifts. They don’t have to be perfectly wrapped. They can look all rustic and personal which made the gifts even more special. :)

This year, I have been loving brown paper as a gift wrapper. The organic feel of brown paper adds “warmth” to the gift. That’s just my personal opinion. I have looked up a couple of images to inspire myself. I hope they inspire you too!

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  1. Instead of the conventional ribbons, why not spruce up the gifts with fabric trims i.e. lace, poms-poms, sequins… (source from the DIY Network)
  2. Scrapbook elements are not limited to… well.. scrapbooking. Any odds and ends from your favourite activity can be handy in your annual christmas gift wrapping too! (Source from the princessandthepeas.com)
  3. I love paper doilies. You can get them quite inexpensively from dollar stores…. With their instricate details, they immediately add elegance to the brown paper. (source from Mondocherry)
  4. Another use of unwanted magazines (or glossy brochures)? Why not layer them over the brown paper and finish off the gift with a twine? (source from Birthdaymagz.com)
  5. Use vintage paper coaster, old greeting cards and ribbons – it’s all about making the best of what you already have. (source from Inspiration for Home)
  6. Children can contribute to gift wrapping process too. Spruce up the brown paper wrapped gifts with your children’s paper cutouts. You can’t get more personal and meaningful as this one. :) (Source from Inspiration for Home)
  7. If you love the paper doilies idea but you have none in house, you can cut out paper snowflakes with colour papers to decorate your gifts. (source from Budget Decorating)
  8. Last but not least, make a couple of cute yarn poms poms and in substitute of ribbon. Only if time permits. ;) (Source from Inspiration for Home)

Get yourself a nice hot cuppa, your favourite Christmas playlist playing and get started. Happy wrapping everyone! I shall leave you with a video instruction on how to make your own yarm poms poms. xoxo Emily

   

Holiday Baking Ideas

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When it comes to gifting bakegoods to family and friends, I love to revisit the recipes I have done before. The familiarity gives me confidence and with that confidence, I feel comfortable in tweaking and adding my personal twists to suit the occasion. I have rounded up a couple of my favourite recipes that I think would be perfect for this holiday season. Enjoy!

  1. Baked Tim Tam Doughnuts (Donuts)
  2. Chocolate Pinwheels
  3. Peanut Butter & Spelt Cookies
  4. Salted Chocolate & Nutella Cookies
  5. Stained Glass Biscotti
  6. Nigella Lawson’s Caramel Croissont Pudding
  7. Coconut, Turkish Delight & White Chocolate Macaroons
  8. Up ‘n’ Bake Wholemeal Peanut Butter Cookies
  9. 5 Cup Fruit Loaf

 

   

Chocolate Coated Sweet Treats

Hi guys! It’s been a while since I’ve posted. Like many, it has been a busy couple of weeks, mainly redecorating my place as well as out and about getting ready for the holiday. :)

I am looking forward to a nice long holiday. Lots of delicious food, sweet treats and also a little getaway with my beloved. I can’t decide on the location yet…but decision has to be made soon as it is down to 7 days to Christmas. It’s crazy huh?

Anyway, I have been thinking about making super simple sweet treats for the holiday. You know, something you can just whip up in no time. Hopefully you’ll enjoy them too!

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Cherry Baubles (White Chocolate Coated Cherries)

What you’ll need:

  • Hot boiling water from the kettle
  • 100g/4 ounces white chocolate
  • 30-35 cherries with stalk still attached

And 10 – 15 minutes in the fridge to set the chocolate.

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Methods:-

Melt chocolate in a bowl over a pot of simmering water (make sure the bowl doesn’t touch the water). While waiting for the chcolate to melt, line a baking tray with parchment paper. When the chocolate is fully melted, turn off the flame and start dipping the cherries into the chocolate one by one. Make sure the cherries are dry or else the chocolate doesn’t stick properly. If the chocolate start to solidify, turn on the flame on low to melt it. Once all the cherries are coated with chocolate, allow the chocolate to set in the fridge for at least 15 minutes.

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Chocolate Coated Ice Cream Balls

What you’ll need:-

  • Hot boiling water from the kettle
  • Dark chocolate – 50g/ 2 ounces
  • Ice cream – 4 scoops

Allow at least 30 minutes in the freezer to freeze the chocolate coated ice cream balls.

Feel free to multiply the portion above to suit the number of people you’re serving. :)

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Methods:-

Melt chocolate in a bowl over a pot of simmering water (make sure the bowl doesn’t touch the water). While waiting for the chcolate to melt, line a freezer friendly plate with parchment paper. When the chocolate is fully melted, turn off the flame.  Scoop ice cream onto a plate and working quickly, use a soup spoon to coat the ice cream balls with melted chocolate. Then place the chocolate coated ice cream in the freezer for at least 30 minutes. Serve immediately once they leave the freezer.