Sunday, August 19, 2012

chai tiramisu cupcakes

To celebrate the birthday of the lovely Caroline I wanted to make her a cake that was nothing less then special. I've been thinking about this combination for a while now. Tiramisu is traditionally with coffee so I figured chai tea would work in a similar way. The first time I made this dessert it didn't work at all, actually it reminded me of clag glue with honey; Obviously I'm not very cluey with custard! So to make it a little easier on myself I thought - Cupcakes!  Hooray for Cupcakes!

I bought the very special Dolfin Chocolat, au hot masala. A lovely subtle chai spiced chocolate from Belgium and teamed it with some marscapone and a custard flavoured cupcake - Ta dah! Chai Tiramisu Cupcakes!

Make them for someone special.


3 cups Self Raising flour, sifted
2/3 cup vanilla custard powder, sifted
dash of salt
1 cup caster sugar

2 cups water
2/3 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons lemon juice

100g Dolfin Chocolat - au hot masala (2 x 70g packets)
2 tablespoons pouring cream

125g marscapone

Ground cinnamon, for dusting

How to make your Chai Tiramisu Cupcakes

Pre-heat oven to 180C or 160C fan forced. Line 2 x 12 hole muffin pans with cases.

Sift flour into a large bowl along with salt and custard powder. Stir through caster sugar. In a seperate bowl combine water, oil, vanilla and lemon juice. Whisk the liquid into the dry ingredients until smooth. Divide among cases. The mix is quite runny, don't worry! I use a 1/4 cup measure which gives me 24 cupcakes exactly.  bake for 25 minutes. Remove when ready and allow to cool slightly in the muffin tray. Cool completely on a rack.

When cooled and you are ready to serve them cut out circles in the top of each cake, cutting an an angle, almost like a funnel shape, keeping each round as you'll place these like a hat over the choc and marscapone (I used a muffin tree which held 19 cupcakes and the chocolate mix was just enough. If you want to make the full 24 chai tiramisu cupcakes you can either use a little less chocolate in each cupcake or use more chocolate in the melting process)

Using a small saucepan add 2 tablespoons of pouring cream and 100g of the hot masala chocolate. Using a spatula stir over a low heat until melted and smooth. set aside to cool for a minute.

Spoon in a little pool of chocolate into each round, top with a little dollop of marscapone (roughly the same amount) place the round at a slight angle and dust with the ground cinnamon. Enjoy immediately. Maybe with some chai tea too!

Happy Birthdays!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

a little place called.....kiama

Not sure if I have mentioned this before but I grew up in a little place called, Kiama.  Back then it was a lot smaller and a lot quieter. I remember we couldn't buy bread on the weekends; and the nice man at the petrol station use to fill up our car for us and give our windscreen a clean too and I always slept with my window open. If it was really hot I'd prop the back door open too which use to be opposite my bedroom door. The smell of the beach, the cool air of the mountains and the warmth of the sunny sunshine always take me back there.

As we get older I think we all have a soft spot for where we grew up, especially if we no longer live there. At the moment I am about a 2 hour drive away from Kiama, which doesn't sound too far away but having 2 small children in the car, it always feels like 8 hours!

Over the last couple of years the following pieces have come my way by chance. Something makes me look under a certain book or peek inside an old yellowed envelope or flick through a stack of magazines or even a fleeting coversation with a new friend from Etsy can bring me exciting things.  From these moments, these pieces have found me and they stay close to me and they remind me of home.

I bought a gorgeous vintage piece from Vegas and Rose on Etsy and the lovely Penthea gave me this amazing spoon of the Kiama literally blew my mind!

February 1998 issue of Country Style - Kiama - Mountains by the sea 

A gorgeous old map of the local kiama area from 1932

It now lives in my sons room

8 fabulous old black and white snap shots of Kiama.....I nearly didn't look in the envelope but my curiosity always gets the better of me!

I almost wish this photo of the Post Office was in colour! I remember when they painted it pink in the 80s, yep, pink! It took the town a little while to get use to that one!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

No regretsy on Etsy - 2 years of fun!

Hello there! Today I celebrate 2 years on Etsy...YAY! Here are some of my favourite things - my favourite pieces and my favourite photos! that I thought I would share with you all. time flys.....

I remember when I found this beautiful breakfast in bed heart stopped beating! I knew exactly how I wanted to photograph it. My great grandmother hand stitched the place mat that you can see in the pic too!

This is my all time favourite picture. Something about milk glass, I just think it is stunning and the colour of this wool with the feather, just divine!
This was the first time my arts background snuck into my listings. This was one of a series that I titled, "Still Life" a piece with various findings and this was one of the items that the lovely Kristy from Flights of Fancy bought. She uses this piece as part of her props now!

If I could, I would fill my house with flowers everyday! and every now and then I buy a big bunch and use them in a photo or 2 for my listings. I loved the shape of this pitcher; it was so thick and heavy and had a real history about it. Just a gorgeous old piece that was perfect as a vase too!

Luminarc glassware is just classic, isn't it? I imagine these being used at a wedding or any fancy soiree. I just loved the light through them and the lady who bought them was so incredibly happy with them. It's always nice to get such lovely feedback!

This set was originally a set of 10 and I sold part of it as a set of 4 so yes, I still have 6 for myself! That blue against the white is just such a pretty combination. The Etsy Shop Sadie Olive even featured this pic on her blog - she loved it too!

My heart went a flutter when I saw these pretty things too! Westminster tea cups in perfect condition with a white exterior and each interior a different pretty pastel tone. From memory this was my quickest sale! It was gone 3 hours after it was listed!

This is one of my most recent sales. I loved this collection of china but each piece had cracks, chips or crazing; they reminded me of the mosaic I bought from the Art Centre many years ago where the artist used vintage china. So I thought these pretty pieces would look gorgeous in a mosaic too!
Sometimes you come across something beautiful where you least expect it. I always love looking at old furniture, not that I have anywhere to put it! but I enjoy looking at beautiful pieces. I remember seeing this gorgeous old kitchen dresser with the prettiest old metal handles in the shape of a rose. I pulled on one, opening  the drawer just slightly and saw these beautiful pieces of old wallpaper being used as liners. 5 pieces of equal size. Just stunning. A lady from the US bought these pieces and I would still love to know what she ended up doing with them!

wow! There were so many more pictures I wanted to add but hey, you can just go and check out my shop......have fun! ;-)