Tuesday, August 30, 2011

I just love it when the children can teach me a trick or two

I was inspired to write this post after eating the amazing lemon freeze my 8 year old made with her daddy over the weekend. We had to wait a full day for it to freeze.
Poppy kept commenting on how burdened our poor wee lemon tree was and how she thought we needed to make something with the lemons. She found a recipe for "Lemon Freeze" in her book titled "Grow your own tree hugger - 101 activities to teach your child how to live green" (something we've been trying to do more & more).

The photo above is after a large bunch of lemons were removed for this recipe, the poor tree is not quite a metre tall.

Whilst her younger brother was off at a birthday party they set about following the recipe, I was out at the time, but came home to the most heavenly smells of lemons premeating my kitchen which hung around all day.

When we ate one, I must have raved a little too much when I was told "Mum - you don't have to keep going on about how beautiful it is", to which I replied "if you put this on a menu at a restaurant you'd be famous.
No seriously, I'm not kidding it was that good. If you have too many lemons at your home, give it a try.

Lemon Freeze (serves 12)
8 lemons (there are 2 extra in case of damage to shells used as serving bowls)
720ml cream
1/2 cup lemon juice
1 1/4 cups sugar
3 tbsp lemon zest

1. Cut all lemons in half and juice them
2. Scoop out remianing pulp from the lemon halves carefully avoiding make a hole in the bottom.
3. Level off the bottom of any lemon half that tilts too much to hold liquid.
4. using the two extra halves that are most imperfect grate lemon zest in to a large mixing bowl.
5. Add cream, lemon juice, sugar.
6. Set lemon halves in a baking dish that will fit in freezer.
7. pour heavy cream mixture in to each lemon half, fill to brim
8. Freeze overnight & up to one month.
9. Serve frozen

(Tree hugger chat point - if the lemon freeze is served with just a spoon, the whole fruit serves a purpose & some dishwater & soap is saved along the way.)


Sunday, August 21, 2011

Is anyone having a RUGBY watching party with friends?

Judging by the amount of All Blacks licensed partyware that has been shipping out the past few weeks, not to mention rugby shaped cookie cutters, cake tins & chocolate moulds I would say a there's a whole bunch of you out there planning Rugby watching parties with your friends.

Here at Kiwicakes, I've been planning a few treats for the supporters. I found these great stickers at our local emporium shop. Made by Kelrae Enterprises in Auckland. I wasn't quite sure what I was initally going to do with them, when I started planning this post.

Then it came to me, they'd look great on our miniature rugby ball gumball dispensers.

The tiny little rugby ball sticker fitted perfectly on the turn crank of the gumball machine.

This particular gumball machine is sold with orange gumballs (direct from the USA - it's the colour the manufacturer chose for football). However I thought they might look better with black jelly beans - the kids easily took the gumballs off my hands (I have jelly beans available in many colours) sold in 1kg bags)

Realising that not everyone is a black jelly bean fan like Grandma Kiwicakes, I decided perhaps white or black & white might be more suitable. In the process I discovered I LOVE WHITE jelly beans. If you're a fan of milkshake or milk bottle lollies you'll LOVE these too.

Of course you can fill these with Jaffa's, nuts, M&M's anything really, as long as they are big enough to fit out the hole when the crank is turned. Jelly beans work great, tried & tested by me.

It doesn't really matter what party I'm throwing, I can never just toss chips in a bowl and open packets of food, whilst I might include chips in a bowl. I always like to make something specific to the event I'm holding. Yesterday afternoon we took the children to the playground, this is very close to the Fudge Farm shop in the town basin of Whangarei. I left the children with hubby and snuck off to see what I could find that might be interesting for Rugby cupcakes. I came up with Chilli chocolate from Bella Chocolates. And the Whiskey & Walnut fudge fromt eh Fudge Farm.

I grated the chilli chocolate

And crumbled the whiskey & walnut fudge. I've previously crumbled fudge in to icing recipes before and found it can stick in the piping nozzles, so if  you're including it in the icing, you need to ensure you have a very large opening to your nozzle. The nozzle is used is Wilton 1A

Visually I thought the Chilli chocolate a little more sophisticated

Than the more rugged crumbled fudge

Both were equally delicious, I would happily eat both of them. The cupcakes are chocolate normally I don't pair cream cheese icing with plain chocolate cupcakes, but in this case, I thought the whiskey & walnut & chilli chocolate were well off set against my version of cream cheese icing which is;

1 block of Philadelphia Cream Cheese
120g softened butter
3 3/4 cups icing sugar
1tsp vanilla
2 tablespoons of hot water
a squeeze of lemon juice

Cream together butter & cream cheese
Gradually add the icing sugar mixing slowly. When half of the icing sugar is mixed in add lemon, vanilla & hot water, continue to slowly add icing sugar. Mixture should be light & fluffy, if left to sit, or made ahead of time, add 1-2 more tbsp of hot water before piping to ensure light fluffy consistency.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Great new mould for arms and so much more


I am loving this new mould which has just arrived priced at $36. The wonderful creator of this mould produced this short & helpful video on just how easy it is to make arms using it. Well worth watching!.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

How to make miniature high heel shoes in icing video


This great video from Frances, the manufacturer of our miniature shoe cutter set, shows how easy it is to make shoes & jandals in fondant or gumpaste.

Video above is high heel shoe & bow

Video above is for Jandals (or flip-flops)

New Kiwicakes website


Did you know Kiwicakes now has a wishlist function?. I received a sweet message today from a Kiwicakes member that got just wanted she wanted for her birthday, by sharing her wishlist with family. To add an item to your wishlist click the red "add to wishlist" button at the centre bottom of any product you are viewing.

Northern Advocate newspaper article Monday 15th August

Yesterday I was featured in a story on the front page of the Northern Advocate newspaper. Mike Dinsdale did a great job with the article. For the full story click here (photo Michael Cunningham)

Sunday, August 7, 2011

A fun popcorn bag cake using Satin Ice Fondant

This cute popcorn bag cake from Elisa Strauss of Confetti cakes is so much fun. Satin Ice fondant makes everything so much easier!


Her Magazine bloom awards coverage

I was looking forward to receiving my latest copy of Her magazine, to read all about the coverage of the bloom awards (for which I was a finalist for best use of technology). The magazine gave some wonderful coverage to the 2 day conference, as well as the awards. As a finalist, I received a lovely glossy 1/2 page ad.

However I was floored as I was flicking through to find I'd made the websites to watch column,as I did not know I was going to be featured there. I think the Kiwicakes website looks mighty fine in print.

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