Amateur Baked Eggs part 2 & 3

    I decided to venture into baked eggs territory once more this past week. This time I used cream instead of milk and the concoction came out beautifully!

    Part 2: I substituted the cured meat with some sauteed oyster mushrooms. I just added some salt and black pepper to taste. They were wonderful and gave a nice ‘meaty’ texture that carnivores would miss in other vegetarian dishes. Le bf has conjured up a new recipe for sauteed mushrooms so I will try his suggestion the next time.

    20121022-195030.jpg

    Part 3: In addition to the beef salami I used during Part 1, I also chopped up some bbq chicken to go into the ramekins. This lent some sweet notes to the baked eggs giving the taste a little more depth than if I were to use salamis solely. Although I loved it, the boy prefered if the taste was singular and he would probably appreciate it more If I had separated the two meat ingredients. Well, to each his own I say. :)

    20121022-195204.jpg

    I can’t wait to try out some other flavor combinations. What kind of ingredients do you usually use? Or what would you like to have in your baked eggs?

Fudgy Brownies with Peanut Butter Chips

      There are days where you refuse to get out of bed. There are days where even opening your eyes to greet the day becomes such an arduous task you miss your aim at the snooze button.

But today was not that day for me. No sirree. Why?

Because I wanted to BAKE BROWNIES.

Of course, there’s nothing better in this world than to eat dessert for breakfast. Or for any meal for that matter. Or maybe that’s just me. :B

Anyway, clutching the recipe I scribbled down from Cook Like Your Grandmother, I put myself to work in the kitchen. Easy, basic recipes are the best. My philosophy in the kitchen is: the less complicated the process, the better. Therefore, it only took me a couple of ingredients and less than an hour to whip up this heavenly treat.

I switched the cocoa powder to melted dark chocolate and the chocolate chips to peanut butter chips. Unfortunately, there weren’t that many chips as a certain someone almost devoured the whole bag. Hmph.

Here’s the end result:

20121011-193001.jpg

Amateur baked eggs

Afer scouring the kitchen for ages, I finally found my long-lost ramekins. This only meant ONE thing. I was going to have to dive in head first into unfamiliar territory. Baked eggs.

I’ve seen these delectable savoury treats make its rounds on my favorite blogs. This one for example. Even my friends were in on the action. They sounded so simple, yet so scrumptious. I knew I had to give it a try.

So yesterday, while clinging to the basic recipe my friend Chloe directed me to, I concocted my own version of baked eggs with what I had on hand. This was the result:

20120606-121630.jpg

I whipped it up in about half an hour, including baking time. I just sautéed garlic, slices of beef salami, shredded leftover chicken and a dash of full cream milk on low heat. Then I poured everything in a ramekin, cracked the egg over it and added some salt and Italian herbs. It came out like custard and was a dream. Although I do believe I’m only supposed to spoon in one tablespoon of cream. :)

I can’t wait to add in mushrooms and spinach. Perhaps add some grated cheese as well. The variations are endless.

What do you like to put in your baked eggs? Any tips for amateurs like me?

Wedding Cake Toppers

The cake is usually the highlight of most weddings as there are slots dedicated to cutting it in some cultures and customs. I personally think, cakes are never complete unless they’re topped with something that symbolises the couple tying the knot. Some couples may opt for topper free cakes with other beautiful embellishments (and this is absolutely fine too) but I for one think weddings that are more attractive and special are the ones with customised cake toppers.

For example, Exhibit A:

Image of Sarah & Kyle’s Wedding by Jagger Photography found on Green Wedding Shoes.

I absolutely adore wooden toppers and miniature buntings. It’s also so cute how the cake toppers resemble the actual  bride and groom. Those outfits on the dolls are exactly what the newlyweds wore! There are tons of talented artists who can make these customised wooden toppers for you like this one on etsy:

Wedding Cake Toppers at MilkTea by bthanari

But what if you’re having a cupcake tower instead of a cake? Surely you couldn’t fit that onto one cupcake? Fret not, then you can fit it onto TWO cupcakes! Exhibit B:

Bride and Groom Cupcake Toppers at Amber and James’ wedding shot by Feather Love Photography.

Now if you’re feeling a little creative and you want to have a hands on approach to your wedding, the easiest way to start (as opposed to making favours for 200 guests), would be to paint your own toppers. Etsy seller Goose Grease provides custom kits that allows bride-to-bes to unleash their inner artist.

I was contemplating on buying one of these kits and making my own but then I thought of having a totally different kind of cake topper. I’ll fill you in on that next time. Till then, enjoy your weekend!

Personalised Maps

Image from Once Wed.

I fell in love with this personalised map of a wedding. No more misprints or rectangles vaguely resembling buildings to direct your guests to your wedding venue. The colours are nostalgically reminiscent of school days and this adds to the homemade appeal.

To those who are elvish inclined:

Image from: The Offbeat Bride

A little hand-drawn gem inspired from Mr. Tolkien himself.

Not into Middle Earth? How about a trip around the Seven Seas with yer hearties. Who’s with me say Aye!

Image also from The Offbeat Bride.

If you be wanting to have a grog fest with plenty of rum and swaggering pirates and wenches, make sure your mateys know which ship to plunder with these treasure worthy maps.

If I received any of these, I’d go to the event just to find my way there and to put these beauties to the test. :)

Cupcake in a Jar

I apologise for the sudden disappearance. Flew back home and had lots of family bonding sessions. I’m also currently missing my guy heaps which made trudging through cute stuff less appealing. LDR isn’t fun most of the time but we make it work just like how most of my friends do. :)

Anyway, back to our usual broadcast of cuteness. *ahem*

picture via CakeSpy.

Salivating yet? If you want to bake your own cupcakes as gifts to friends, the safest way for it to travel would be in these cute Mason jars. How gorgeous do they look, all snugly fit into that box of coloured paper? And how yummy are they covered in rainbow sprinkles and topped with luxuriously smooth chocolate frosting?

CakeSpy has some handy tips and a step-by-step guide from Beantown Baker to those who wish to deliver some sweet comfort food to their loved ones.

So go ahead, grab your oven mittens and send some loving to your friends and family!

I <3 Macarons!

If it isn’t obvious enough for you, I have this huuuuge fascination with Macarons.

[ via Bakerella and from Tartelette who makes AMAZING macarons! Read more about the process of making Macarons at Bakerella’s website! :)]

Not to be confused with Macaroons which are those coconut cookies, these beauties are French in origin. Luscious creams are sandwiched between crispy meringue-like shells that break into heaven-like sweetness at the first bite. They come in a variety of flavours and in a myriad of colours. I sigh in ecstacy whenever I see them and immediately whip out the wallet to purchase them.

[image via Chocolatesuze who loves Macarons too. Pictured are Adriano Zumbos’s lip-smacking creations]

Oh how I long for some of my own. These babies are reknowed for their difficulty in constructing. Unless you follow all the instructions down to minute details, you will most probably fail on the first few attempts. And unless of course you’re miraculously gifted at baking then kudos to you. However, I do wish I could attempt them one day. And I know just what might push me to do it:

It’s SO cute and it gives out handy tips as well as a step-by-step guide with pictures for the uninitiated. I’m sure it would be a great buy for those who are interested. :)

DIY Drawer Hangers and some Dream Furniture

Now here’s handy tip. Right before you throw out your old drawers to replace them with something brand spanking new from Ikea, why don’t you recycle them as clothes hangers? Simple and cheap. Want more? Head on down to Design*Sponge for complete instructions.

Now up next would be a couple of things I wish I could have in my future home.

Saves space and provides room for decor too. :)

No scratch that. THIS is the bookcase I want. Oh yeah.

[both pictures via Mochatini]

Oh and this in the hallway or living room.

[via Absolutely Beautiful Things]

Okay. Maybe I’ll post more later. I wanted to put up a photo of a swing set but I can’t seem to find it anywhere. But I gotta tell ya, it was gorgeous! :D It’s not those kiddie-ish rope and tyre swings. I’m talking about lush sofas with beautiful canopies dusted with soft cushions. :) If I find them (or if anyone knows where I can see piccies of them, let me know) I’ll post them up.

DIY Valentine’s Folder

Valentine’s Day is coming soon and I know some of you would like to save some cash and give something more heartfelt than a box of chocolates. Although, you can never go wrong with confectionery for women. ;) If you have some time to spare and you want to get hands on with your gift, here’s a cute idea from Princess Laserton (one of my all-time favourite crafty bloggers).

You can use it to hold love letters, stationary, gift cards and the like. You can make it for yourself or for your Valentine. Like the Princess suggested, you can even lay out all the materials on the table and have your kids, siblings, nieces and nephews make their own craft project to give to their favourite person in school. :)

So what are you waiting for? Crack out those unused papers and unleash your inner artist!