New Zealand is my Home (and the wonders of microwaved apples)

I’ve been home for just about a month, and in that time I have been doing studying and studying and learning to drive (YAY) and neglecting this blog and cooking and recovering and shivering because its only just hitting spring. But anyway I am so glad to be back: New Zealand is so familiar and the winter (when we had missed most of it) seemed cozy and comforting when we first got back. In the pouring rain I might add. Typical New Zealand! Our suitcases were a bit soggy.

And the recipe: In those chilling hours of boring old maths, I remembered a delicious little treat that takes 1 minute to prepare and 3 minutes to zap the healthy goodness out of in the microwave, thus turning it into a really delicious fluffy, self saucing, tangy, cinnamoney treat.

Here it is: the 3 minute baked apple!

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So it’s very basic: just wash a nice crispy apple (if you are a good person who bothers to do this) and cut out the core. Put it in a microwave safe bowl or ramekin.

 Put a teaspoon of butter (optional) in the middle. Fill up with currants or raisins, then sprinkle cinnamon over.

Microwave for 3 minutes (it may take longer or shorter depending on the power of your microwave – our one is quite powerful) until the apple is soft and fluffy, and a sticky caramel sauce is drizzling out of it. It will smell delicious too.

Wait for it to cool slightly before devouring.

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On my weird photo: It actually isn’t that delicious looking in my quick messy instagram photo (I wasn’t very interested in taking photos – I wanted to eat) but it is. Truly. 🙂

On microwave poison: I know microwaves probably aren’t the most healthy way of cooking an apple. But I still felt healthier than eating a piece of cake. And then there’s the WORST I suppose, which is a delicious cookie in a mug. This is a combination of cake and microwave. Oh well, I like it! Yum I say.

On sugar and dairy free: I categorised this as sugar and dairy free, as the butter is only an optional unhealthy additive, and the only sugars are fruit sugars.

Enjoy! Becca 🙂

5 Minute Peppermint Creams

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For those days when your craving something sweet and you’ve run out of everything yummy. I often whip these up before we watch a movie, when we don’t have anything else tasty.

 This takes 5 minutes, requires no cooking, and doesn’t need overnight setting in the fridge before you can eat them! Drizzle chocolate sauce over for an easy peppermint-choc taste, or dip these in real chocolate and make your own creamy after dinner mints!

5 minute peppermint creams

(all ingredients are estimates. You sort of keep adding icing sugar until the consistency is how you want. It’s very easy!)

 -1 tablespoon butter, softened

-dash of milk

-1-2 cups icing sugar

-peppermint essence to taste

In a small bowl, cream all ingredients together. Keep adding icing sugar until you reach the desired consistency. (firm and mouldable, easy to shape into balls or roll out)

Roll out on a floured surface and cut into squares or triangles. You can also use mini cookie cutters to get cute flowers or hearts.

If you want to make as little mess as possible, and you want to eat these as soon as possible, just break off bits of mixture and roll into balls.

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Have it with chocolate sauce and chocolate chips.

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I used my homemade Chocolate Coffee Syrup, which works great as a dessert topping and dip as well as for coffee.

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They are creamy and addicting without the chocolate too, though! Enjoy this very easy, delicious treat!

Rocket & Pear Salad

IMG_6570One of the best salads ever.

Usually, magazines have a huge amount or recipes that I never ever have any ingredients for. So I was very surprised when I was randomly looking through an old copy of Better Homes and Gardens, and found it was full of great recipes!!

Here’s one of them, but I have slightly adapted it because I STILL didn’t have exactly all the ingredients.

ROCKET AND PEAR SALAD

2oog baby rocket leaves (or a handful, however much you have)

1 small lettuce, roughly chopped (I used a red lettuce)

1/2 cup roughly chopped walnuts

40g parmesan (but I just used finely grated cheddar)

1/4 cup red wine vinegar (originally balsamic)

1/2 cup olive oil

1 clove garlic, crushed.

salt and pepper, to season

*****

Combine rocket, lettuce, walnuts, pear, and cheese.

Put vinegar, oil, and garlic in a jar. Secure lid and shake it all up.

Drizzle over salad.

I also tried adding ricotta cheese to it. It was delicious! It put a mild creaminess to the sharp rocket flavour.

Try this salad with pizza…!! It’s perfect.

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D.I.Y Yummy Lip Scrub (3 ways)

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Lips scrubs take five minutes to make, and they make your lips feel sooo soft. You’ll be surprised.

I found a recipe in a magazine a while ago, and that made me want to make up a couple of my own.

Version 1: Chocolate, Brown Sugar, & Honey

(this is most similar to the magazine version)

1 teaspoon brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon cocoa powder

1-2 teaspoons honey

or you could try

Version 2: Coconut, Brown Sugar, & Cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon coconut

1/2 teaspoon brown sugar

honey to mix

or you could try

Version 3: Orange, Lemon, & White Sugar

1 teaspoon White Sugar

1 orange Vitamin C Tablet ( this is optional, but it tastes & looks good!)

fresh lemon juice to mix

-Mix the ingredients together until they are a stiff, sticky paste.

The honey scrubs last, the lemon one wont last. The sugar will dissolve with that lemon juice. –

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Put into a cute little pot, tie with a ribbon, and there’s a lovely gift.

These are so yummy, I tend to eat more of the lip scrub than I use. 🙂 Enjoy.

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Our new doughnut maker!

I’ve been wanting one of these for ages.

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SO I found one for only $15…:)

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RECIPE http://www.sunbeam.com.au/recipes/d/doughnut-maker-doughnut-batter/

That is the basic recipe. I am planning on trying out a few fancier toppings etc, but I made cinnamon and glazed cashew nut this time.

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For the glaze: mix water and icing sugar together gradually until you get a white, gloopy paste kinda thing. My glaze came out weird. It was too runny. Next time I will know what to do, though.

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Make the glaze, drizzle over doughnuts, chop cashews up really fine and sprinkle on.

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For the cinnamon donuts: Put 3 tablespoons of sugar and 3 teaspoons of cinnamon into a plastic bag. Put the doughnuts in and shake it all together thoroughly.

They tasted sooo good! IMG_5548

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These are not fancy doughnuts, they are not healthy…and I’m sure there are some other  DELICIOUS recipes out there, but this was my fist try, and I was very proud of them lol. 🙂

abeautufulmess.typepad.com has a delicious looking recipe that I have to try! Well, America is probably the best at making up exciting new recipes.

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enjoy