Thursday, June 28, 2012

Winter Dressing

Winter Dressing

This is my favourite winter outfit at the moment. I have the dress, from City Chic. It is a beautiful dress that really flatters me. It hides all the lumps and bumps, cinches in at the waist, and is so feminine. The dress has a floral print with dark brown, reds and greys in it.

As the weather has been bitterly cold I wear it with black leggings, flat knee high boots and a long grey cardigan. I tie the belt that comes with the dress over the top so in cinches in my waist. I will also be able to wear this dres during summer, and I especially like the flared cap sleeves and the peek of lace at the shoulders.

I love wearing dresses with boots and leggings during winter. They are pretty, comfortable and flattering for the plus size figure.

What is your 'go to' outfit?

Tuesday, June 19, 2012


The other night my little girl was starting to get sick. In the middle of the night she woke wailing. Not her usual 'Wake up and get me my milk' cry, it was a 'I want my Mummy' one.

I went in and tried to soothe her but anytime I went to leave she stood up, eyes half closed with her arms out, sobbing. I went back in and picked her up, carrying her back to my bed.

Once in bed she snuggled on top of my chest. Attempts to shift her (11 kg!) body were met with more cries.
On my chest she slept.
Head tucked under my chin
Ear pressed to my heart listening to it beat
Arms wrapped around my torso
Feet brushing the tops of my thighs

I fell asleep with my arms and heart full, breathless from the the beautiful gift that I have been given.

and maybe also because of the 11kg weight that was pushing the air out of my lungs...

Friday, June 8, 2012

Recipe - Boiled Milk Buttercream

After extolling the virtues of the Boiled Milk Buttercream I thought I should share the recipe. This recipe makes enough to cover a cake, and fill one layer. To create the ruffle cake I doubled the recipe.

You can flavour the recipe a number of ways. You can either add flavouring when making the boiled milk, or add it when adding to the butter.

I have made this recipe a few times since. One time I replaced milk with coconut milk and added some lime zest to make a coconut and lime frosting. It was divine!

I have also added melted chocolate to the milk when boiling it. Although I found I needed to add more flour to get the mixture to thicken.

It is important you wait for the boiled milk mixture to go cold before you add it to the butter, otherwise you will cause the butter to melt, making the mixture too runny. Although if this happens you could always put it in the fridge to firm up, then beat again.

Buttercream made with milk does need to be refridgerated

Boiled Milk Buttercream

  • 1 Cup Milk
  • 1 Cup Sugar
  • 2 Tablespoon Plain Flour
  • 1 Cup Butter - RoomTemperture

Put the milk, Sugar and Flour in a saucepan. Stir the ingredients, making sure the flour mixes in without clumps. Bring the mixture to boil. Stir it until it thickens. Keep letting it boil and stir until it goes thick like pudding ( or like Clag glue!).

Let the mixture cool.

Add the mixture to the butter. Beat until the mixture is combined and fliffy. ( I use the whisk attachment on my beater).

It is now ready to pipe onto cupcakes or spread into cakes


Saturday, June 2, 2012

A First Birthday Tea Party - The Cake

In recent years I have begun to dabble in cake decorating. I have always admired people who were artistic. I have never been a very good drawer or painter. However I have discovered that I am good at cake decorating. I am by no means an expert, this is simply a hobby. What it has given me is a new found respect for cake decorators and the many hours and skill that goes into creating a beautiful cake.

For Abbie's birthday I spent a long time looking around trying to decide what cake I wanted. Did I want to make a teapot? Something with a little figurine on top? I looked at lots of different designs, but I kept coming back to the ruffle cake that has been doing the rounds on the Internet.

I usually make fondant covered cakes. However I decided a pretty pink ruffle buttercream cake would be perfect for a first birthday. Especially given that I was making all the other desserts.

I then had to decide what buttercream recipe I would used. I have experimented with many different kids and had a selection of recipes to choose from. However I kept finding faults with them all.
Normal Buttercream - Too sweet and sometimes a bit grainy
Cream Cheese Buttercream - Too rich
Swiss Meringue Buttercream - This uses raw egg whites. Although they do get heated up to a bacteria killing temperature I still prefer not to use this for a child's cake

I went in search for a silky, sweet but not too sweet buttercream. I was delighted to come across a blog that spoke about a boiled milk buttercream. It is made by making a pudding like mixture with boiled milk, sugar and flour, cooling it, then beating it into butter. The result is a smooth, cream like buttercream that is not too sweet or buttery and can adapt well to flavouring.

For Abbie's cake I made a Neapolitan cake, with a vanilla, strawberry and chocolate layer. I then made the boiled milk buttercream. However I used strawberry milk! I added a simple fondant flower and number 1 topper for decoration.

I also made a 'smash' cake, which is a miniature cake that is just for the birthday child to smash into and eat!

The Verdict? I will let the photos speak for themselves