2015-10-31

BAKE IT: Chocolate brownie.










Chocolate is every girl's best friend, especially in those rainy days. I thought that I have to make something chocolaty for Halloween and I found this great recipe on Crafted Cake blog! Go and visit this blog for more great recipes.
In Poland brownie is made without chocolate so it was something different to me, but when I tried it... Oh my! Heaven! 
I think it's perfect for Halloween so if you craving for some chocolate it's not to late to make this amazing brownie.

Ingredients:
150g dark chocolate
50g milk chocolate
180g butter
40g cocoa powder
3 eggs
270g golden caster sugar



​1. Grease a baking tray and preheat the oven to 180c/ Gas 4, a tray that is 23cm and 4cm deep is usually best for brownies.

2. Melt the chocolate slowly on a low heat and add the butter and melt together, when all is finally melted then take it off the heat to cool.
3. In a seperate bowl whisk the eggs, gradually adding the sugar as you whisk, whisk the egg and sugar until it is pale and has doubled in size, roughly whisk for about 3-5 minutes.
5. When whisked and the chocolate mixture has cooled (you need to make sure it really has cooled otherwise if it is too warm it will turn your egg mixture into scrambled egg!) add the chocolate mix to the eggs and sugar and carefully fold together until all is combined. 
6. Sieve the flour and cocoa and add it to the mix and carefully fold it all together.
​7. Place on the middle shelf in the oven and bake for about 25- 30 minutes, they will be ready when they have risen and have a light crust looking layer on the top, remove them from the oven and leave them in the tin to cool, then when cooled, cut into squares and enjoy!
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2015-10-27

BAKE IT: Carrot cake.











I only ate carrot cake once, when my friend brought it to work and it was great! Since then I wanted to make my own carrot cake, but it seemed so difficult to make (I didn't even read the recipe) and I also wanted to learn how to bake simple recipes so I left this one for later. 
One day I looked in the fridge and I saw that we have a lot of carot there, so I googled the recipe and I finally made it the next day. 
I think this is one of my favourites, it's a nice sponge which isn't dry at all, you actually can't taste the carrot (I'm talking here about its texture) but you can notice a sweetness from carrot. And believe it or not - philadelphia is just perfect with it. It will be one of my "must-bake" cakes for autumn and winter.


Ingredients:
2 cups of plain flour
3 cups of grated carrot
1 cup of oil
3/4 cup of caster sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp of bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp of baking powder
2 tsp of cinnamon
pinch of salt
Walnuts (add the amount you prefer)

Cream cheese frosting:
500g of Philadelphia or mascarpone
1/2 cup of sugar
100g of soft butter

Method:
Grate peeled carrots on a bigger grater. Sift flour, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt into a bowl. Mix eggs with sugar in another bowl, then add oil and mix again.
Add dry ingredients to egg and sugar mixture and mix ingredients with a spoon. Add carrot and walnuts.
Pour your mixture into a 25 cm cake pan with a parchment on it and bake in 180 degrees for 50 minutes.
Cool the cake in a cake pan and then leave it to cool completely on a wire rack.
Mix every ingredient of a cream cheese frosting into a smooth mixture, add more sugar if you like.
Slice the cake into 2-3 sponches and put frosting on each of them.
Put whole walnuts to decorate the top of your cake. Sprinkle cinnamon on top.

Put into a fridge to cool.

Enjoy!












Do you like carrot cake? What is your favourite autumn bake? Let me know in comments below.
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2015-10-25

How to rock casual outfit with fringe boots?

Jeans and sweater is the perfect outfit for cosy evenings in fall. And when you add fringe boots to it your quick visit to a local shop round the corner becomes a fashion outing! Just one item can rock the whole look.
This sweater has a long V neckline so it is very feminen and slightly romantic such as the fabric it's made of. Romantic and comfortable is what i like the most. Classic jeans are in white to give this outfit a contrast. And last but not least - fringe boot, my must have for autumn! I love the colour which is very neutral but it's not black which I don't wear very often.
I also like this time of the year when days are shorter and a little bit colder and you can just spend evenings under the blanket with a glass of wine or hot chocolate or you can play on the floor with your little one.
Autumn and winter are seasons of warm sweaters so choose your favourite one and pair it with some jeans, add your must have shoes for this season and you're ready to rock.



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2015-10-17

Apple tart.

I think this is my favourite and the easiest bake ever. I've made apple tart few times before and the pastry dough wasn't perfect, but now I made more pastry dough so it was thickier and... I used white strong flour which is originally for making pizza dough or bread. I didn't have a plain flour so I gave it a go and it was just perfect! Well, that's what my fiance said.
Apple tart is great for summer days in the garden or at a picnic, but it would be also good in fall. I think it's actually an autumn bake. The best is served hot (straight from the oven) with a bit of ice cream. So delicious!!!




Ingredients for a pastry dough:
  • 170 g plain flour
  • 55 g caster sugar
  • 110 g sliced, cold butter
  • 1 egg yolk

Place every ingredient into a bowl and mix together until you get a pastry dough. Make a ball from a dough, put cling film on and flatter a bit. Leave in the fridge for at least an hour.

Apple filling:
  • 5 big apples without a skin and a centre, cut in bigger parts
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
  • pinch of cloves in powder
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • more - 1 tbsp breadcrumbs
  • 1 beaten egg with 1 tbsp of milk to spread on top of the tart before baking

Put pieces of apples into a pan, add cinnamon, cloves, sugar and lemon juice. Simmer for a while and stir on a medium gas to not overcook the apples. they should be soft but not falling appart. Take off the hob.

Take a 20 cm diameter tart pan, spread a bit of butter and then sprinkle flour on it.
Take pastry dough out off the fridge and devide it in two parts.


Roll one part with a rolling pin and put on the bottom and sides of the tart pan. Sprinkle breadcrumbs on top of the pastry dough, then put apples and even the surface. Roll the second part of the pastry dough, place it on of of the apples and put it together with the pastry dough on the sides. Dab it few times with fork and then cover it with beaten egg and 1 tbsp of milk.


Bake in 180 degrees for 30 - 45 minutes till it's golden. Take it out off the oven and leave to cool.
Although I prefer it to be hot and served with ice cream.

Sprinkle some icing sugar on top before serving.

Enjoy!



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2015-10-10

Mini parka for a toddler - my must have for winter.

I've recently welcomed autumn into my life and I think we liked each other and I am even looking forward to winter (shocker!). Couple days ago, when I was looking at Ollie I was daydreaming about what is yet to come. I was thinking about dark, winter evening walks with our small family, Christmas lights on trees or fences, smiley faces all aroud. I can't wait for Christmas time this year. Last year was quite busy, because my partner finished his work about 8pm and we quickly ate something and went to visit our friends on Christmas Eve (in Poland we actually celebrate Christmas for 3 days: 24th, 25th and 26th of December) and Ollie was such a small baby, that he didn't know what is happening, but now it's going to be different and I'm more excited now.











Babies and toddlers have to be prepared for winter so my sister got Ollie a nice and warm parka for his birthday. I think it will suit either to jeans, chinos or sweat pants. It is very comfortable for a baby, so your little one can crowl around in it or have fun on a playground. It also has a nice, big hood so when it's rainy, windy or cold, your little one won't feel a thing.
I like to dress Ollie a bit stylish, but not so grown up (no loose pants or chains or something uncomfortable!), so I loved this faux fur lining on a hood of the parka as well as the khaki colour, it's so in right now!

Do you see this cheeky smile? I think he likes it.























Parka - Primark
Sweat pants - Primark
Spiderman trainers - George


Is your little one prepared for winter yet? What's your must haves?

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2015-10-06

How to get your toddler to eat more solids?

It is obvious that your baby needs milk even if he is on solids already. Milk is very important in baby's diet. From 6 months babies can be introduced to solid food and then after some time they can slowly drink less and less milk. But what if your toddler wants only milk and nothing else?
Only a couple days ago Ollie was drinking milk even every two or three hours and I thought that it's not normal, I thought that he should eat more veggies and fruit, but he didn't want anything, even yogurt! 
My son is teething since he was 4 months old and from that time he's getting more and more teeth and a teething baby is a fussy baby so he was eating everything but it was changing all the time. Once he was eating every meal with us and then he didn't want his favourite yogurt or fruit.
Couple days ago Ollie got a flu so again - he didn't want to eat anything and then we gave him new growing up milk. It was all crazy. We should give him at least 2 x 150ml a day (that's what it says on formula) and I was worried that he needs more... I didn't know whether he can drink 4 or 5 x 150ml milk a day. He is a 1 year old now so I was getting some information about it and voila! In one day I managed to change his habbits from drinking mostly milk to eating more solids and I give him milk 3 times a day now! First bottle of milk is in the morning, then after a bath around 7pm and then at night. 
How did I do it? I've stopped giving milk to him! Yes it's that simple! If your little one doesn't want his meal, that is fine, but DO NOT give him milk!* Instead try to give him more water or juice in between meals. I know it is a bit drastic metod, but your toddler needs to feel hunger and then he will eat the next food you'll give him.
He will cry and whine, but just ignore it. I was shoked that it worked so fast on Ollie. Now we are about to give up formula and give him cow's milk instead. It's healthier and a lot cheapper too. Wish me luck!

*Ask your GP for advice, if you're worried about your little one's diet, I'm not an expert, but it worked on Ollie.











What advice could you give to parents of milk drinkers/milk addicts? ;) 
Let me know in comments below! 
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2015-10-05

Organisation is everything.






I didn't realize that I had a lot of time to myself and my partner... until I had a baby. Especially now, when Ollie is crowling around the house and everything is interesting to him and sometimes it's dangerous (cables, cubbords, stairs, cat, etc.) I have noticed that I have to organise a time for myself and think when can I take a shower or do the make up. I was always that type of girl that was comfortable with a little bit of make up or with no make up on at all but everyone needs to pamper themself from time to time. Now everything is more difficult, but I like to be organized and I think I'm doing pretty good. Ollie is a really good boy and I can't complain. 
My bathroom is upstairs so when I want to do the make up I take Ollie with me and I close the door so he won't go near stairs or to our bedroom and he can play with my make up brushes or my lipstics as well! It's so funny seing him taking everything out of my make up bag and putting everything gracefully down on the floor. And after a while mummy's done! 
Sometimes I don't have a time for shower or I am so tired that I skip one, but I try to wash my hair every day (I have a problem with oily hair so I have to wash it very often) and Ollie is helping me. It takes only 5 minutes! Unfortunatelly Ollie wants only mummy and wants to be with me all the time and hates being in his travel cot downstairs by himself so I take him with me everywhere but not when I am going to pee haha! There has to be some boundaries, right?
We're doing cleaning together as well as cooking and doing laundry. I'm doing more cleaning when he's asleep or I'm preparing something for my blog. When my fiance is at home he is cooking for us or looking after Ollie so I have a time to cook something nice and healthy for dinner. He is also cleaning on weekends and making breakfasts sometimes so I can be a bit lazy when Ollie is sleeping!
Shopping is daddy's responsibility, because he has a car and he can buy everything after work. We are doing weekly shopping, because it's better for our wallet and we don't waste so much time on shopping. Only if we need to do a small shopping I'm taking Ollie with me to a local Tesco and then we are going to a playground so it's 2in1.
As you can see you can do a lot having a baby or a toddler and being on your own (when your partner is at work). Organization is everything!



Me:
Blouse - Primark
Jeans - River Island
Necklace - Primark

Ollie:
T-Shirt - George
Trousers - Primark
Socks -Primark

What do you do to keep your baby/toddler busy?

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2015-10-03

Thumbprint cookies.


I've skipped one episode of Great British Bake Off as my blog post, because I am so busy at the moment and those cookies are just simple to make so I've decided to share the recipe with you. I made them few times already and everyone seemed to love them. They're good with a morning coffee and also as an evening snack while watching a movie. You can of course choose different flavours to the dough or put nutella instead of jam (but then do it after baking). This recipe would give you about 35 cookies, but you could double the ingredients if you want. They're gone so quickly!


Ingredients:
  • 125 g sliced, cold butter
  • 1/3 glass of caster sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 110 g plain flour
  • 110 g walnuts or almonds in powder
  • 1 tsp of vanilla or almond extract
  • half tsp of baking powder
  • pinch of salt

Also:
  • jam to fill the cookies in, the best is the thickiest, but every jam will do

Place all ingredients in a bowl and mix it well until you get the pastry dough (you can also mix ingredients by hand). Make a ball from the dough, then make it flat, put cling film all over and put it into the fridge for 60 minutes.

After that time tear off little pieces of dough and make little balls from them (a size of walnut). Put everything on a baking tray with a baking parchment on it with small spaces between the balls (they will rise during baking). Use your finger or the end of your wooden utensil and make a well in the center of each cookie. Using a teaspoon, fill each well with jam, being careful not to overfill the wells.



Bake in 170 degrees for 13-15 minutes or when cookies are a bit golden. Take them out of the oven, cool them for a while on a baking tray and then place onto a wire rack.

Enjoy!!!





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