Edited highlights: Pancakes, date loaf and Swedish foodstuffs

We like to make things in this house... well, not all the time, we can open packets and buy pre-prepared stuff with the best of them (chicken-on-a-stick, fish-in-a-box), but when we do make things from scratch we are very proud! Exhibit A: Date loaf for school election day cake stall... Fresh... Exibit B: My mothers'…

Vampire skin and raspberry meringues

What to do in the school holidays on a day off from work? The 11-year-old son formerly known as Spider Boy was annoyed that he had to go to Vacation Care the next day, so I told him we could do whatever he wanted (within reason) today. He declined offers of ice-skating and movies; top…

Summer Retrospective – birthdays, beaches, green thumbs and too much leg.

Hello! Well we're well into nearly at the end of March now and that means we're well overdue for the Alexcellent Summer Retrospective. But hey, this is Canberra in March, therefore still hot, and it still feels like summer to me. There's also the second-half of last year retrospective that I really need to get to,…

Edited highlights: bare trees and summer memories

On Monday I worked from home as Spider Boy had a cold. It was also time for his plaster to come off. Once we got home from the medical centre, I noticed for the first time that the branches on the trees outside our window are bare. I don't know how long they've been that…

7 Halloween cupcake recipes… an Alexcellent roundup.

Halloween is tonight but you've just got time to bake some last-minute cupcakes. Here are some spooky-but-cute Halloween treats from around the web if you're needing some sweet inspiration. 1. "Broken glass" cupcakes from marthastewart.com The "glass" is sugar and water. 2. Reese's Frankenstein cupcakes from yourcupofcake.com 3. Ghost cupcakes from thecomfortofcooking.com 7. Chilly ghosts…

Edited Highlights: Sugar, blossoms, cake and colouring-in

Time to catch up on the past month with a series of snapshots that seem to be mostly food and floral. I snuck away from my desk last Friday (working from home means I'm just sneaking away from myself) and went to local whole foods store, About Life. I ate a raspberry and coconut muffin…

Baking with yoghurt: Mango and vanilla yoghurt cake with white chocolate ganache

I love cake, but in my efforts to be healthier, I've been thinking about ways I could reduce the fat. No butter? Yes, it is possible to make a cake without butter. But let's not get too crazy. This cake does have some butter in it. But less than normal because today I'm substituting some…

School Cake-stall Baking

I saw some really cute panda-face cupcakes on Housegoeshome,  so I decided to have a go for the recent Federal Election day cake-stall at school, because they were just so cute, and importantly, looked easy enough. Still, when I was at the supermarket buying my ingredients, I bought a pack of ready-made cupcakes with brightly coloured icing, just in…

Nothing Like Nigella. Part 2

You might remember my cheesecake disaster from last week: the rubbery, salty garbage-tasting lump with flesh coloured gelatinous globules in it that actually made me dry-retch when I tasted it. The big pictures and step-by-step instructions in a children's cookbook borrowed from the library made it look so easy. But my cheesecake didn't look like the pictures.…