Sunday, November 20, 2011

New blog!

I've combined both my existing blogs into a more all-purpose one and imported all my old posts:

Come and join me!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

No-sugar, low-fat apple & cinnamon muffins

Pursuant to the previous post, I've lost 4kg in 3 weeks, yay! I have started a separate blog for that, but this is a bit of a cross-over.

I adapted a 'normal' muffin recipe to make these, Emma wasn't interested (but is so rarely willing to try anything new), Evie ate one and Alastair ate three. Heh. They're not bad, if you're expecting a very sweet muffin they will be odd but they're pretty good for what they are. Using whole milk, as I do, it comes out at about 107 calories per muffin. If you use skim milk, it's about 103 calories. Why bother? ;) If you used a non-dairy milk, these could easily be dairy-free.

4 Granny Smith apples (mine were small, approx. 100g each with skin/core)
160g self-raising flour
150g wholemeal spelt flour
2 eggs (I used large eggs)
50g honey (2tbsp for those not using a Thermomix)
180g milk of your choice
1/2 tsp baking powder
a generous sprinkle of cinnamon (good flavour and good for the blood sugar)


Peel, core and slice apples. Cook with a small amount of water, and then puree. I did this all in the Thermomix, but whatever method works for you. A good fork mash would work okay too, if you're short on appliances.

I let this cool because I had to go out, but I don't imagine that's necessary.

Mix all ingredients in the Thermomix, approximately 20 seconds on speed 4, make sure you scrape the sides down. Otherwise, sift dry ingredients, combine wet ingredients in a separate bowl, then mix the two together.

Divide into 16 muffin tins - remember if you make larger ones it will affect the calorie count, if that concerns you. If it doesn't, then go for it ;)

Bake approx. 30 minutes at 180. I found these took a bit longer than my regular muffins, and sank a little in the middle after cooling, but they're cooked.

TIP: grease the muffin tins well, mine stuck a bit probably due to the lack of butter or oil in the mix. Or use paper muffin cases.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

I am going to lose weight

Confession time: I don't like dieting, I hate the dieting industry. However, I need to lose about 15kg, and more importantly, inches off my waist as my waist measurement puts me in the high-risk category for heart disease. I am an emotional eater; I eat when I'm upset AND I eat to celebrate or reward myself. Also, while I'm relatively active and not too terribly unfit, I don't really raise my heart rate enough to effectively burn calories and fat.

So I am aiming for a "lifestyle change", but that's semantics really: it's a diet. It's time for harsh truths!

I am doing the Michelle Bridges 12-week Body Transformation. I do know how to eat properly, and I know how to exercise, but the frame of mind I'm in, I want someone to tell me what to do and give me that push.

At least, judging by the cookbook, it is real food, not artificial sweeteners and shakes-instead-of-meals. So far today I've had a poached egg on wilted spinach with toast for breakfast, and a chicken, eggplant and salad pita bread for lunch. And two cups of coffee (small amount of milk, no sugar) because I am not giving up coffee :P I'm hungry now, so I'm going to have a yummy nectarine :)

In the interests of accountability, my current weight (as of Wednesday) is 81.3kg.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Day 21: luminarium!

The kids inside Levity III at the AWESOME Festival:

Evie had white cardboard angel wings on, which looked really cool. She said they were owl wings, though. "Owl! fly fly!"

Friday, November 19, 2010

Day 19: 5 things to do in Perth this weekend

19 November

Joondalup Upmarket
6-9pm, Central Walk, Joondalup

Buy handcrafted Christmas gifts, homewares, clothing and more. Live music and free children's craft activities. On every Friday for five weeks. Visit

Let’s Celebrate Belmont: Movie under the Stars
6.45pm, Garvey Park, Fauntleroy Ave, Ascot

Bring a picnic to see the Disney movie UP! (Rated PG). FREE!
Enq: #9477 7248 or visit

Saturday 20 November

Swan View Show
9-4.30pm, Brown Park, Amherst Rd, Swan View

Agricultural show with a wide range of competitive displays, as well as variety stalls. Adults $8, Conc. $5, children $5, under 5 free. Visit

Sunday 21 November

All Things Bright and Beautiful Open Day
10am-3pm, RSPCA headquarters, 108 Malaga Drive, Malaga

Activities and things to do for animal-loving families, including music, pony rides and tours of the shelter. Adults $5, children $3, family ticket $12 (proceeds to the RSPCA). Visit

19-28 November

The AWESOME International Arts Festival for Bright Young Things
Showcases contemporary art from all around the world. New media, film, animation, contemporary dance, sculpture, installation and theatre are presented in the Perth CBD for young people and their families.
Two FREE events on this weekend and next:
- Levity III. Immerse yourself in the light and colour of the giant inflatable ‘luminarium’. 10am-5pm Saturday, 11am-5pm Sunday, 10am-5pm during the week. Forrest Place, Perth.
- Big Picture, Small People. See the latest animation for young people. Various screening times at the State Library Theatre and Northbridge Piazza. See website for times.


Thursday, November 18, 2010

Day 18: in the garden

We're having a hot spell here in Perth, but that means I have water from the air-conditioning with which to water the plants. I set a bucket up under the downpipe and it gives me enough for most of these potted plants.

More blueberries. We've been picking four or five ripe ones each day, just enough for us each to pop one in our mouths, yum.

A little baby strawberry :) The kids are very excited about these.

The beans are a-climbing!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Day 16 - happy face biscuits

250g butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar (forgot to weigh this for proper Thermomix conversion)
2 eggs
few drops vanilla extract
4 cups/530g plain flour
jam for filling


1. Cream together butter and sugar (Thermomix: 30 seconds or so at speed 4)
2. Beat in eggs and vanilla (Thermomix: about 15 seconds at speed 4)
3. Stir in the flour and mix to a fairly soft dough (Thermomix: add the flour in batches and incorporate until a dough is formed)
4. Turn onto a floured board and knead gently (Thermomix: 30 seconds at interval speed)
5. Roll out to 3mm thickness and cut into rounds. From half of these, cut out eyes and mouth.
6. Place on greased baking sheets and bake at 190 degrees for about 15 minutes or until golden-brown. Leave on the baking sheets for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack.
7. When cool, spread biscuits with jam and sandwich together.

Based on a recipe from a very old Margaret Fulton cookbook.

Alastair helped me make these. The faces are a bit wonky and therefore creepy-looking, don't you think? We also didn't roll out the dough quite thin enough, and used quite a large round cutter, so there's a LOT of biscuit in these.

However, they sure are yummy! There's nothing like making food with happy faces on for a feel-good activity :)