May 7th: Mum’s Chewy Chocolate Slice!

If you already couldn’t tell, I love baking! And there’s nothing better then to make a classic recipe you grew up with your mum making!

So I thought, in lieu of Mother’s Day coming up tomorrow, I’d share with you a wonderful memory from my childhood and of my wonderful Mother in the form of this delicious Chewy Chocolate Slice!




You will need:

125g (4 ounces) of melted butter

220g (1 cup) of brown sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract (or essence)

75g (1/2 cup) of plain/all-purpose flour

35g (1/4 cup) of self-raising flour

2 tablespoons of good quality cocoa powder

40g (1/2 cup) desiccated coconut

For the chocolate icing you will need:

160g (1 cup) of icing sugar

2 tablespoons of good quality cocoa powder

10g (1/2 ounce) of melted butter

1.5 tablespoons of hot water (approx.)


First, preheat the oven to 180C or 350F. Grease a 20cmx30cm slice pan and then line it with baking paper, extending it about 5cm (2″) over the sides.

Combine together the melted butter, brown sugar, egg and vanilla extract in a medium-sized bowl.

Neatly sift the two flours and the cocoa powder over the wet ingredients and then gently mix them together.

Add in the coconut and stir to combine.

Carefully spread the mixture evenly into the pre-prepared tin and then bake for about 30 minutes or until it is firm to touch.

Meanwhile, make the chocolate icing by sifting the icing sugar and cocoa into a small bowl. Add in the melted butter and hot water and stir until it becomes a spreadable consistency.

While the chocolate slice is hot, evenly spread over the chocolate icing, finishing it with a sprinkle of some extra coconut.

Allow the slice to cool in the tin before cutting it into 12 or so slices, depending on how you choose to cut it!

Store the slice in an airtight container for up to a week.



I always get such a huge rush of nostalgia when I make (and eat) this lovely slice and I really hope you enjoy making it!

Happy Baking, Friends!


Inspiration: Baking Day by The Australian Women’s Weekly.


May 2nd: The World’s Most Delicious Banana Bread!

Here’s a fab little recipe to get your week on track!

Over the weekend, we had a very sad looking bunch of bananas that begun ripening way too quickly before we could even contemplate eating them! Boo!

So what better excuse than to use the best Banana Bread recipe that I’ve come across in years! (A highly subjective opinion of course!!) And big bonus: It tastes great too!! It’s super dense and moist, rich in flavour and colour and is surprising (and quite satisfyingly) crunchy around the edges!

This recipe has been sourced from one of my favourite baking books…

Baking Day by The Australian Women’s Weekly.


Here’s what you’ll need…

1 cup of mashed (overripe) banana (I used four smallish bananas but you can use two larger ones)

1 cup (220g) of brown sugar

2 eggs

40g (1.5 ounces) of melted butter

1/2 cup (125ml) of buttermilk (use full cream milk as an alternate)

1/4 cup (90g) of treacle (you can also use golden syrup or honey)

1.5 cups (225g) of plain/all-purpose flour

1 cup (150g) of self-raising flour

2 teaspoons of mixed spice

1 teaspoon of bi-carb soda (baking soda)

And now to make…

First, preheat your oven to 180C or 350F. Grease a 14cmx21cm (5.5″x8.5″) loaf tin and then line it with baking paper, extending it about 5cm (2″) over the sides.

Next, combine the mashed banana, brown sugar, both eggs, the melted butter and buttermilk as well as the treacle in a large bowl.

Gently sift both of the flours, the mixed spice and bi-carb soda over the wet ingredients and stir them together. Try not to over mix – the lumpier the better!

Carefully pour the batter into the pre-prepared tin and place it into the oven to bake for about 1 hour.

Leave the bread in the pan for about 10 minutes before turning it out onto a wire rack so that it can cool.

This hearty banana bread can be served as is or toasted with a dollop of butter and accompanied with a hot cup of tea!

Serves 10-12 (depending on how generous you cut your slices!)

Happy Baking, Friends!


Festive White Chocolate Fudge | December Diary


Ooo, are you ready for a last-minute, deliciously sweet and naughty treat for your Christmas table?? I think I may just have the recipe that will top your day off! It’s simple. It’s easy. And it’s delicious!

This silky smooth fudge is packed full of juicy ruby-red cranberries, festively green pistachios and lashings of snowy white shredded coconut!


The ingredients:
400g of white chocolate
400g tin of sweetened condensed milk
150g of unsalted butter
1 cup of desiccated coconut
1 cup of shelled & chopped pistachios
1 cup of dried cranberries
1 teaspoon of vanilla essence

The making:
First, break up the chocolate into a large heat-proof bowl and then add the condensed milk, butter and vanilla.
Slowly melt this all together over a saucepan of gently simmering water.
Take the bowl off the heat and carefully stir in the coconut, pistachios and cranberries.
Pour the mixture into a paper-lined tin that measures 20cmx30cm (8″x12″) and then evenly smooth the top using a flat spatula.
Place the tin full of fudge into the fridge for about four hours (overnight is best!) to set.
Finally, remove the fudge from the fridge and cut it into small squares using a sharp knife.



I wish you all a very happy and safe Christmas and hope you enjoy the day with family, friends and your community!

Thank you to each and everyone of you for your amazing support and lovely words when it has come to my blog and YouTube channel this year! You’ve made my year one that will always mean so much to me! I really couldn’t ask for better friends than what you all are to me!

Merry Christmas, Friends!!


September 9th: Baking Day!

Happy Hump-Day!

We’ve made it to the middle of the week and now we’re on the down-hill to the weekend! Yay!!!

Today I thought I would share with you a most beloved and favourited recipe of mine that I absolutely love to bake as the warmer Spring days slowly come back into our lives!

And that recipe is… Shortbread! Usually, I make it with a good handful of orange zest, but today I was feeling brave and choose to see how well it tastes with lemon zest instead! (Oh!! The fresh sweet smell of lemon filling my kitchen was just simply devine!) By adding the lemon or orange zest, it will just give the Shortbread a lovely subtle fresh fruity flavour that will make you go back for more and more!

So here’s how to make this delicious and fail-safe Lemon Shortbread!

You will need:


To make:

Begin by preheating your oven to 150C/300F/gas2. Then butter well a square slice tin measuring about 22cm or 9″.

Place the butter and sugar in a large bowl and cream them together using a wooden spoon until it looks light and fluffy.


Add the plain flour, cornflour and lemon zest to the buttery mixture and gently fold them together with your spoon. Then get your clean hands into the bowl and mix until you have a lovely smooth dough.


Place the dough into your buttered tin and press it evenly throughout the tin and into the corners using your fingers. (The rougher looking the better!) Before popping it into the oven, grab a fork and prick the surface all over.


Place it into the oven for about 50 minutes until the top of the Shortbread is looking lightly golden brown.

While the Shortbread is still oven warm, cut it evenly into squares and sprinkle a generous amount of caster sugar over the top.

This Shortbread is best enjoyed with a lovely hot cup of tea!



Recipe adapted from one by Jamie Oliver called ‘The Best Shortbread in the World’ from his book, Cook With Jamie, published in 2006.


Let me know if you’re going to give this recipe a go! Even if you’re not the best chef in the kitchen, this Shortbread is insanely easy to make and just as easy to eat as well!!

Happy Baking, Friends!!


My May Favourites!

Now that the month of May has come to an end it’s time to share with you my favourite things from this month!

one // Geo Dreams Quilt

Geo Dreams Quilt (2015)
Geo Dreams Quilt (2015)

Throughout May, I spent most of my time working on this quilt, made especially for my Quilt-Along-With-Me series. It’s safe to say, I’m absolutely in love with this quilt! The prints, colours and textures work so harmoniously together that I could literally cry at how beautiful it is! The completion of this quilt also comes at a great time too, as a bitter cold winter season has finally blanketed Sydney, allowing me the perfect opportunity to cocoon myself in this quilt and not leave the house!
If you missed out on the series and are interested in learning how to make a simple quilt, you can click here to watch the series playlist and here to download and print out the pattern!

two // Studio Ghibli Movies

My Neighbor Totoro, Kiki's Delivery Service & Arriety
My Neighbor Totoro, Kiki’s Delivery Service & Arriety

There have been three in particular that I’ve loved watching over the past few weeks and they are My Neighbor Totoro, Kiki’s Delivery Service and (especially) Arriety – a film based on the story of The Borrows. The animation and super-sweet storytelling in that one was simply awesome and I loved watching every minute of it! I really like the quirky nature of Studio Ghibli movies. They’re told in such a lovely way and can capture the essence of emotion – joy, laughter, danger and love – through the storylines, characters, animation and music! Perfection! 🙂

three // All Time Favourites by The Australian Women’s Weekly

AllTimeFavsCookBookI love buying and making things from baking books that are brought out by the AWW. This one in particular features some really great ‘all time favourite’ recipes that both me and my mum have been making over the past two decades (more for her!). Some of the recipes are simply mouth-watering: Six-Layer Chocolate Cake, Popcorn Butterscotch Squares and Lemon Butter Almond Slice!
I also really love how the book has been designed from the typography, photography, colours and the diverse range of baking choices!

four // Crossy Road App


Now this is one of those apps you download and then find it quite difficult to stop playing! Similar to the old retro game, Frogger, you have to ‘hop’ your character over busy roads, flashing train tracks and raging river logs avoiding death! Along the way you collect coins to ‘buy’ more characters to play with as well as trying to beat your last highest score of how many hops you made before dying! It’s a really fun little app to play to procrastinate with or to simply take your mind off the mundane! It’s free to download but beware; there are in-game purchase options that can become a little pesky and annoying!

five // The Body Shop Vanilla Eau De Toilette


I purchased this perfume in May and wore it almost everyday in May too! I just love how simply subtle it is; it’s not too over powering and the scent lasts all day on you! Vanilla has and will always be my number one scent to fall back on and I’m quite confident in saying that this one is now in my top five favourite perfumes!

six // The Body Shop Hemp Hand Protector


Now that winter has so kindly graced us with its company, my hands have been bitterly suffering! Cold, dry, rough and sad! 😦 But I find that using this Hemp hand cream leaves my hands silky smooth, soft and refreshingly moisturised! It sinks into my skin so quickly and doesn’t leave a greasy or oily feeling afterwards. To be honest, the scent isn’t quiet my favourite but it is warming and homey like, which makes it a-oh-kay!

seven // The Art of Escape by Hein Cooper

It’s not often I have just one song that captures me in the way that this song does. It’s so melodic, calming and simply beautiful to listen to! The lyrics are touching and deep and slightly out there – which I like! When I listen to it, it puts in a really calming mind frame and makes me relax and smile.


If you would like to watch me chat about these favourites, then click here to see it!

Happy Favouriting, Friends!



A Few Of My Favourites!

I thought, for today’s blog entry, I might share a few of my favourite recipes with you. I’ve had a few requests for the recipes of a few things I’ve made and shared previously on my blog.

First one up is Orange Shortbread! This little beauty of an afternoon tea snack is at it’s best to eat straight out of the oven, all hot and crumbly! Nom-Nom!

I’ve sourced this recipe from one of Jamie Oliver’s brilliant cookbooks – Cook with Jamie: My Guide to Making You a Better Cook.


The Best (Orange) Shortbread in the World

Jamie says “This recipe will make buttery, crumbly, delicious fingers of shortbread, but, if you’re feeling adventurous, why not try adding some orange or lemon zest or a bit of lavender to your dough” (p. 412).

Makes up to 12 chunky finger-sized pieces (or more depending on how you cut it)

You will need:

  • 250g/9oz unsalted butter at room temperature, plus extra for greasing
  • 125g/4 ½oz caster sugar plus extra for sprinkling
  • 250g/9oz plain flour, sifted
  • 125g/ 4 ½oz semolina or cornflour
  • Zest of 1 orange

Now to make…

  • Preheat the oven to 150.C/300.F/gas 2
  • Butter a 22cm/9inch square tin
  • Cream butter and sugar together with a whisk or wooden spoon until pale, light and fluffy.
  • Add in the plain flour and semolina or cornflour as well as the orange zest.
  • Mix very lightly with a wooden spoon and then your hands until you have smooth dough.
  • Press the dough into your buttered square tin, poking it into the corners with your fingers (the more rustic looking the better!)
  • Prick the dough all over with a fork and then pop it into the oven for 50 minutes until lightly golden.
  • While still warm, sprinkle with a generous dusting of caster sugar.
  • Allow the shortbread to cool slightly, cut into 12 chunky finger-sized pieces.
  • Eat, Eat, EAT!!!

This is such a super-dooper easy recipe to make and by adding the orange zest the taste and pure satisfaction you receive from eating it triples the pleasure!!

This next recipe is for all you lovers of chilli!

I’ve been making these power-packed biscuits for the last six years and are usually all eaten in less then two days! They’re just too YUMMY! I’ve tweaked the recipe just a bit from the original, so I’ll write it up from the perspective of how I make them.

Brought to you (and me) by The Australian Women’s Weekly magazine, they would make the ideal gift to give for Christmas or to bring along to a dinner party etc.

Cheese and Chilli Biscuits

Makes up to about 50 biscuits depending on what size cookie cutter you use.

They’re suitable to freeze, but I guarantee they won’t last long enough to even worry about freezing them!

You will need:

  • 2 cups (300g) plain flour
  • 1/3 cup (50g) self-raising flour
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • ½ teaspoon of mild paprika
  • 250g butter, chopped
  • 2 cups (160g) of finely grated parmesan
  • 2 teaspoons of dried chilli flakes
  • 1 tablespoon of poppy seeds, optional
  • 6-7 tablespoons of tepid water

Now to make…

  • Preheat oven to moderately slow – 160.C/140C fan-forced
  • Sift together both flours, salt and paprika into a medium sized bowl.
  • Rub in the butter
  • Stir in the cheese, chilli flakes, poppy seeds and enough water to make a soft dough.
  • Gently knead the dough on a floured surface with your hands. (There’s no need to be too precious about it, the more rustic looking the better!)
  • With a cookie cutter (size and shape is your own choice) cut out biscuits and place them onto greased oven trays, about 1cm apart.
  • Bake the biscuits for about 30 minutes or until lightly golden brown.
  • Leave to cool on trays or transfer them onto a cooling rack.
  • Eat, Eat, EAT!!

Just like the orange shortbread, these little delights are best for mouth stuffing straight out the oven with a cooling glass of milk!

I’m more than happy to give all credit for these delicious recipes to their original writers/creators and heartily thank them for sharing their creativeness with us home cooks! Referencing can be found at the end of this blog post.

Soooo, I suppose I should also share some of my current sewing adventures with you…

Yesterday, I plunged into the first steps of hand quilting my Jacob’s Ladder quilt.

I bought all the necessary products that I needed to start this enormous task (plus more fabrics that I didn’t need!) down at my local Spotlight store and then got stuck into it!

It was the very first time I had ever done hand quilting and desperately felt outside of my comfort zone!

However, after persisting with it all afternoon and into the early hours of the morning, I felt like I was finally getting somewhere regarding my technique along with what I had achieved so far.

I know the stitching isn’t perfect, but I’m not aiming for perfection. My aim is to try and experience a new quilting technique and to be proud within myself for attempting it as well as finishing it to a standard that I’m happy with. Well, this is what I keep telling myself anyway!

I still have a very, very, very, very long way to go until it’s finished BUT have now finally got something to work on while parked in front of the TV of an evening waiting for the ads to finish!

I will continue to update my progress with this new learning curve, sharing my triumphs and down-right frustrations with hand quilting such a big quilt as the start of the Australian summer begins!

God give me strength!!

Happy Sewing! xx



Oliver, J. (2006). Cook with Jamie: My guide to making you a better cook. London: Penguin Books

The Australian Women’s Weekly. (2006). Made for giving. Sydney: ACP Magazines