Floral Crown

Floral crownCan it be crocheted?  This is the question asked regularly in the auntiedotes household, now that I have the skills. And the answer?

Of course it can!!

So when the idea of a floral crown being created out of tissue paper came up…let’s crochet it instead.

Here I have to acknowledge that my crochet genius does not yet extend to creating my own patterns and I very helpfully found a pattern in Inside Crochet magazine.

The large rose is super fun to make, especially when it seems like it’s going wrong making me pull it out several times before trusting that I am reading the pattern correctly.  As it comes together it all makes sense. Ahh (I now have a small collection of roses, if anyone needs one). The pattern is for a much more elaborate crown, but I like this simpler version that i put together (it felt achievable to do it this way).

The small base to attach the flowers to just wasn’t working for me, so I made a simple double crochet band crocheted in to a hair bobble at both ends, eh voila, a headband any lion (or little girl) can be proud of.

Roll on halloween for Lil D to get to wear it!

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Creepy cupcakes

Creepy cupcakes

🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛

Creepy cupcakes, creepy cupcakes

Snot and eyes and eggs.

Creepy cupcakes, creepy cupcakes

Let’s hope they don’t grow legs.

🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛🐛

Sisters

I’m really beginning to appreciate comic books.  They make the train ride home from work much more enjoyable.

This one had to be read.  Before we were aunties we were sisters and growing up together made us who we are. Reading about someone else’s memories of sisterhood brings back fond (and often funny) memories of our own.  Wow, we were different people back then (^-^)

Thanks for sticking with me, Eims ❤️

Pumpkin King

Pumpkin baked doughnuts

It’s October.  The world once again worships the pumpkin.

Pumpkin spice lattes wave the checkered flag on summer and herald the start of autumn.  We are powerless to resist.

The ultimate pumpkin recipe is, of course, pumpkin pie – a treat reserved for Halloween week in our house.  This year’s offering will hopefully sport a piped chocolate spider web (^-^) cos tradition needs to be built on. Fact.

With an extra tin of pumpkin puree burning a hole in the larder, a pre-pie pumpkin taster recipe seemed like a good idea.  Enter baked pumpkin doughnuts via mommyhoodsdiary.com. Little did I know I would dislike batch baking quite so much.  Thank Pumpkin they taste good.

I made my own pumpkin spice mix with equal amounts of ground ginger, nutmeg and cinnamon making for an almost treacly flavour.  Very moreish. Not too sweet, just moist and spicy.  Perfect for the season.

Pumpkin spice latteMid bake I decided to use the leftover pumpkin puree to try a homemade PSL.  Heat a cup of milk with your pumpkin and a spoonful of sugar.  Bring to a simmer then add a drop of vanilla and some pumpkin spices.  Froth with a blender and pour over some coffee.  Let me just say – not worth the time.  Maybe it was just a step too far on a busy day.

What I did learn was that I like to glaze.  A lot.

Maybe next time it should just be a two auntie operation…

🎃 Embrace the Pumpkin

Elf mail

As soon as we get back to school in September it’s all hands on deck to prepare for all the upcoming Autumn/Winter festivities.  Halloween costumes begin to take shape. Spooky food and decorations are experimented with. Cosy recipes are dug out and finally, it’s socially acceptable to get going on our Christmas lists.

This year we’ve found a cute little Advent extra.  Elf mail from the International Elf Service.

With the warm welcome given to last year’s foreign exchange Elf, Tinseltoes, a little more North Pole interaction seemed too good to miss out on.

You can chose between 24 personalized letters from various North Pole elves or a reduced stash of 7 to produce over December to keep your dotes excited.  Each has a little story and drawing, printed on elephant poo paper. (^-^) .

Now we really can’t wait for December to come. Hohoho 🔔

Lime and Coconut cupcakes

‘The best yet’- so said one of my co-workers, so I thought I’d share the recipe.

As ever, I start with a cupcake recipe from my Hummingbird Bakery recipe book- they never fail to be moist and delicious, and make a great base to start experimenting with flavours.

The Base (from original recipe)

70g unsalted butter (or Stork with Butter in my case)

210g plain flour

250g caster sugar

1 tbsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

210ml milk

2 large eggs

Extras

2 tbsp dessicated coconut

zest of 1 lime

Put the oven on 170C.

The method is quite simple- mix together all the dry ingredients (including coconut and lime zest) until you have a crumbly mixture.  Separately whisk the milk and eggs. Slowly combine, whisking all the time.

Spoon into cupcake cases, and bake for 25-30 mins.

Just before they come out of the oven make a lime syrup, using:

Juice of 1 lime

2 tbsp sugar

Boil these two ingredients together for 2-3 mins (till it thickens a little). Pour the syrup over the cupcakes when they come out of the oven, then let everything cool.

Icing (the star of the show)

1 tub (280g) cream cheese

70g icing sugar

125ml double cream

Whisk together the cream cheese and icing sugar. Probably best use an electric whisk or this next part will take forever.  Add the double cream to the mix and whisk.  You want the icing to thicken up enough to pipe, but not be too stiff.  It didn’t take me too long!

Then pipe onto the cooled cupcakes and finish with a little lime zest.

The results  (for me anyway) were light and moist cupcakes with a lime twist (the coconut wasn’t that strong, maybe a little coconut milk next time?)