Month: May 2013

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play dough recipe

Pantry Basics: Play Dough

play dough recipe

Regular readers may have noticed that I really enjoy making the odd children’s amusement from scratch. I think even CH didn’t fully comprehend my love of working with my hands until our toddler T came along. After almost a dozen years of marriage, it only recently dawned upon him that I’m a “crafty kind of girl” (I’m not quite sure if the pun was intended). I simply don’t believe that children ought to only discover things through pre-packaged stimuli that come out of a box. Of course, T receives plenty of toys, I don’t shun them, and he loves technology. But I try my best to throw in simple things like squishing play dough (yes, that’s a burger made out of play dough pictured above), touching grass with your bare feet, playing with ice cubes, finger painting, threading pasta, counting soybeans, and learning to tear sheets of paper into the mix.

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One-pot wonder: cauliflower and red lentil soup

chunky cauliflower soup

The hubby and I are hoping to lose a few, seeing as we basically haven’t stopped eating since the Christmas season last year. Soups have been our go-to lunches since the amount of liquid in them deceive us into thinking we are full just after one big bowl. To my surprise one day, the hubby requested for cauliflower soup. Some time back, I cooked a roasted garlic and cauliflower dish with cheddar cheese melted over. It got him loving the veg, and he has since been on kind of a cauliflower bender.

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Jaan and Tippling Club: Two of my favorite vegetarian tasting menus

Jaan's Garden

My girlfriend K gets a lot of grief for being an ethical vegetarian (and occasional pescatarian, when bivalves and mollusks are involved). Besides the droll meat trolls who ask her questions like “don’t vegetables have feelings too?” and leeringly point out that animals die to make just about everything we use everyday, she also has to put up with largely unremarkable, and frankly disappointing meal options at many restaurants here –  one can only eat so many portobello burgers and green salads before one goes a bit nuts.

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The vanilla cupcake – utterly classic, absolutely yummy

6 cupcakes edited

When I finally got around to procuring the Kitchenaid mixer (in red, of course), one of the first things that I made was the vanilla cupcake. It would be my first cupcake attempt, and I was super excited. Using the recipe from the Hummingbird Bakery cookbook, the first time I made it, and the multiple times afterwards, I’m always happily surprised by how soft, airy and fluffy the sponge is, and how the frosting just lovingly complements the concoction.

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Champagne and food pairings – some surprisingly fun and casual options

potato chips with onion dip

When pairing Champagne and food, the acidity of the wine is key to finding its perfect food partner. There are some classic and extravagant pairings like caviar and oysters, but there are some more unexpected foods that are also a great match. I don’t think that Champagne has to be stuffy and formal at all. It’s always a great time to enjoy bubbles  – and here are some of my favourite pairings, perfect for a casual weekend afternoon or to start your evening with.