Saturday, 28 November 2015

Coconut Rough Fudge

Yep, I'm going through a zillion fudge recipes! They are just so easy to make and great to take in for office treats!! This was my contribution to an office farewell afternoon tea :) 
 

 
Coconut Rough Fudge
 
This is a much stickier/fudgey fudge and best served right out of the fridge, so if you're going to make fudge for Christmas gifts, I wouldn't make this as it is to melty (I would make a fudge recipe cooked with glucose which holds it together more), however it is great to bring to a party for your dessert contribution, and this was a massive hit in the office, with lots of people go in for several pieces after they had the first one! 
 
And, this has only 3 ingredients!!! Milk Chocolate + Condensed Milk + Shredded Coconut!
 
Coconut Rough Fudge Recipe:
 
 
 
Add milk chocolate and condensed milk
 
 
Melt 10 minutes/100 degrees/Speed 3

 
Add coconut
 
 
Recipe says to mix on reverse, however it didn't work so I just mixed it through with a spatula - easy enough!
 
 
Pour into square silicon baking pan
 
 
Sprinkle with shredded coconut and refrigerate overnight!
 
 
 
 
 
 

Thursday, 26 November 2015

Reindeer Cupcakes

These reindeer cupcakes are so cute and easy to make for the kids, or for  an activity for kids in the kitchen!

 
 
12 reindeer including Rudolph with his red nose!
 
 
What you need:
 
  • Chocolate cupcakes (x 12) - base
  • Chocolate buttercream icing - face background
  • Vanilla buttercream icing - eyes background
  • Mini pretzels (x 24) - horns
  • White Chocolate melts (x 12) - mouth background
  • Mini M & M's (11 x brown ones, 1 x red one for Rudolph) - noses
  • Chocolate Chips (x 24) - eyes
  • Melted chocolate - melt a handful of chocolate chips in a ziplock bag placed in the microwave in 20 second intervals on high, squishing the chocolate together between your fingers in between microwaving, until all melted, then cut a small hole in the corner and pipe the mouth


Assemble to look as the photo above and enjoy!!
 
This can be made with any cupcake and buttercream icing recipe or packet mix (kids will probably pick off the top chocolate bits and give their parents the rest to finish!). If you're short on time in the past I have also used Betty Crocker's ready to go frosting available from the baking section in the supermarket :)
 
 

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

'Subway' Cookies

I had a Subway cookie for the first time in aaages last week and it was so more-ish, I decided to make them at home! 
 
 
'Subway' Cookies
 
This is the recipe I used - Subway Cookie Recipe (Thermomix Method):
 
 
If you don't have a Thermomix, I have found this Subway Cookie Recipe (Non Thermomix Method):
 
 
 
 Weigh out 350 grams mixed chocolate/nuts (Next time I'll use a mix of M & M's, Choc Chips and Macadamias, however I used whatever I could find in the pantry, including leftover Easter Eggs...about time considering it's nearly Christmas!)
 
 
 Add 170 grams chopped butter
 
 
 Melt - 4 minutes/60 degrees/Speed 2
 
 
 Add 180 grams brown sugar and 110 grams white sugar
 
 
 Mix 2 minutes/Speed 4
 
 
 Add 2 eggs and 1 tsp vanilla paste/extract
 
 
 Mix 30 seconds/Speed 4
 
 
 Add 400 grams self raising flour
 
 
 Mix 1 minute/Speed 3
 
 
 Add reserved chocolate/nuts (chopped up)
 
 
 Mix together with a spatula/wooden spoon (I transferred to another bowl as the Thermomix blades got in the way)
 
 
 
Bake for about 12 - 15 minutes in a 180 degree preheated oven
 
 
 
 
 
 
Wait to cool a few minutes then transfer to cooling rack
 
   
 
 
 
 
 
 

Finger Food Ideas for Babies and Toddlers

Here are my 'tried and tested' list of finger foods for my boys!



When Ethan and Harley started to want to eat themselves, I did a lot of online and book research for finger food ideas.

My boys are HUGE for their age, and looove their food. They are not fussy (...most of the time) and have no food intolerances which makes it really easy for me to prepare their meals!

My rule is to have the most colourful 'tasting' plate of foods so the boys experience a variety of different foods, textures, smells and flavours. I've read that a colourful plate of food is a nutritious one! So I make sure I cover lots of food colours in the meals the boys eat (except for when we are out and using the pram!). I've also read that the more variety of foods you give a baby when they are young, the less fussy they will be when they grow older (this isn't tried and tested yet, so *fingers crossed*)!


Thermotwinning's Finger Food Ideas for Babies and Toddlers
Koala sandwich with Mayvers Super Spread on a bed of baby spinach, cherry tomatoes, babybel cheese, steamed broccoli and carrot, strawberries (quartered), hard boiled egg, and pizza pockets 


The boys with their 'pram friendly' finger foods (i.e. nothing juicy or coloured like vegemite, tomatoes, berries, watermelon etc)
Dinosaur sandwich with cream cheese on a bed of baby spinach, cheese and crackers, dried apricots, freeze dried apple, and whole orange and poppyseed muffin with almond and chia seeds 


Another 'pram friendly' lunch box
Cheese and bacon rolls, sweet eating cucumber, tasty cheese, mini fruit balls, pear and crackers

BREAKFAST:

Pancakes/waffles - these are some that I make that freezes and reheats well:
Pumpkin Pancakes (The boys fave!!)
Sweet Potato Waffles 
Berry Coconut Flour Pancakes 

Wholemeal sandwich, toast or Cruskits with the following spreads:
Baby purees including fruit purees (instead of jam)
- Vegemite
Mayvers Super Spread (can be found with the peanut butter section/organics section)
- Cream cheese
- Avocado
- Mashed banana
- Jam

Raisin Toast (there is a wholemeal version available) - freezes and reheats well

Scrambled eggs - in a bowl, add egg(s) (about 1 per child) + a splash of milk + a small handful of grated tasty cheese - microwave 1 minute on high, stir, then microwave 30 seconds at a time stirring in between until cooked. Leave to cool for a few minutes - the tasty cheese gives it some flavour and also helps the egg firm up so it is easier to grip (my husband's trick! he makes it for the boys on the days I'm at work) - goes well with vegemite on toast!

Sultana Bran Buds (link here) or similar type bite sized cereals (soaked in some milk to soften)

***With a spoon:
MAIN MEALS:

Wholemeal sandwich, toast or Cruskits with the following spreads:
Baby purees including fruit purees (instead of jam) and savoury 'main meal' ones
- Vegemite
- Cream cheese
Mayvers Super Spread (can be found with the peanut butter section/organics section)
- 'The Laughing Cow' cheese triangles - squished and spread 
- Cream cheese mixed with sardines (super nutritious but best left to eat at home as it's a bit on the nose!) my boys love this!
- Vegemite and sliced tasty cheese
- Avocado
- Mashed banana
- Jam 

Wholemeal Toast Cheesy Melts - I use one or some of these toppings and top it with a piece of sliced tasty cheese and pop it in the air fryer or grill for 5 minutes/180 degrees
Tinned tuna
- Ham
- Scrambled eggs
Tomatoes
- Tinned red salmon
- Avocado
- Bolognese sauce
- Gourmet sausages cut up into small pieces
- Roast/poached chicken (shredded)
- Leftover meat diced into small pieces

Pizza Pockets (link here- freezes and reheats well

Pasta - any type, I usually use elbow pasta, macaroni or small sea shells as they are easy to pick up - freezes and reheats well. I generally use a cheesy white sauce base, vegetable puree, or tomato based sauce for the pasta sauce with the following fillings:
- Tinned red salmon
- Fresh salmon (de-skinned and de-boned)
- White fish like Ling or Barramundi (de-skinned and de-boned)
- Bacon/ham
Chicken Thigh Fillets (they have more nutrients than breast fillets)
- Pork, chicken or Beef mince
- Peas
- Broccoli
- Sweet Potato
- Pumpkin
- Carrots
- Zucchini
- Frozen Veg i.e. peas and carrot
- Or cooked pasta with grated cheese melted on top (easy and not messy if you're out!)

Some of the boys' fave pasta recipes:
Meatballs - Any combo of chicken/pork/beef mince + hidden blitzed up veggies - freezes and reheats well

Salmon Patties - I use a recipe from the Thermomix Cooking for your Baby and Toddler book - however this is a great Salmon Rissole recipe - freezes and reheats well

Risotto or Pasta Muffin Cups - With any risotto or pasta recipe, just place in muffin tins and top with tasty or cheddar cheese, and bake for about 20 minutes/180 degrees until cheese is melted and golden. Skinnymixer's Risotto Frittata is a great recipe - freezes and reheats well

Hot Dog Buns (Chinese Sausage Rolls) (link here) - freezes and defrosts well

Sushi - This is great for older babies if you're out and need to takeaway something for them. My boys love the mini ones and make sure you don't get the raw fillings, so I usually get avocado, tuna, cucumber, or egg ones. The sushi rice is really sticky so I find it really easy to clean up after them! You can make Sushi yourself - this is a great recipe - Thermobexta's Egg and Avocado Sushi

Thermomumma's Garlic, Cheese and Spinach Naan (link here) - freezes and reheats well

***With a spoon/fork:
VEGETABLES:

Sweet eating cucumbers (halved or quartered lengthwise) - these are mini cucumbers you can get at green grocers, Coles/Woolies and Aldi - usually in the refrigerated vegetable section with the lettuce

Cherry/grape tomatoes (halved lengthwise) - the boys fave are the Gold Sweet Eating Grape tomatoes (they are orange in colour) these are the ones from Coles, they are sweeter than normal Cherry tomatoes which can sometimes be quite tarte

Steamed carrots and green beans (cut in half, then quartered lengthwise) - Fill bowl with water just above the blades, place carrots into steaming basket (I usually make about 2 carrots and a handful of beans then place in fridge to use as needed), then steam 16 minutes/Varoma/Speed 1

Steamed Broccoli Trees - Fill bowl with water just above the blades, place carrots into steaming basket (I usually cut 1 lot of broccoli then place in fridge to use as needed), then steam 12 minutes/Varoma/Speed 1

Steamed Zucchini - Fill bowl with water just above the blades, place carrots into steaming basket (I usually cut 2 lots of zucchini then place in fridge to use as needed), then steam 9 minutes/Varoma/Speed 1

Sweet potato (roasted/air fried/steamed)

Pumpkin (roasted/air fried/steamed)

Potato (roasted/air fried/steamed)

Lettuce/spinach leaves (any type though I steer clear of the bitter ones like rocket)

Cooked peas - Fresh, frozen or dehydrated

Capsicum (Cut into sticks)

FRUIT:

Apples (quartered, cored, then each quarter cut into 3 wedges) I leave the skin on as it has a lot of vitamins/nutrition in it, or else there are 'kid's lunchbox' apples which are smaller which my boys love to use their teeth and bite into!

Pears (quartered, cored, then each quarter cut into 3 wedges) I leave the skin on as above

Seedless Watermelon
(cut into small pieces (one of the boys faves but I leave it for home as it is so messy!)


Blueberries

Strawberries
 (halved or quartered)

Grapes (halved lengthwise)

Bananas

White or Yellow Peaches

White or Yellow Nectarines

Mango

Kiwifruit

SNACKS/DESSERT:

SLICES/BARS/BROWNIES:
(Freezes and defrosts well)

MUFFINS/CUPCAKES:
(Freezes and defrosts well)

COOKIES/BISCUITS:

(Freezes and defrosts well)

BREAD/CAKE:

(Freezes and defrosts well)

SWEETS:

(Keeps in fridge for a few weeks)

PANCAKES:
(Freezes and defrosts well)

SAVOURY:


Hard Boiled Eggs - Fill bowl with water just above the blades, place eggs into steaming basket - cook 15 minutes/Varoma/Speed 1

Tasty or cheddar cheese - pre-sliced/cut into thin pieces
Cheese sticks (these are softer, I would wait to introduce it around 10 months as I found the boys would squish it in their hands and smoosh it everywhere before it got to their mouths)

Babybel Cheese

Deli meats - ham, turkey, Skinnymixers Lunchbox Chicken Loaf

Shredded chicken (poached, roasted)

Crackers - Jatz, Ritz etc

Arnott's Shredded Wheatmeal biscuits

Fruit straps (100% dehydrated fruit) I have made them like the Strawberry Chips but they have a really short shelf life when homemade (when the boys are older and eat more it'll better!) but my recent fave are Annie's Fruit Straps as they are great to leave in the baby bag

Mini Fruit Balls (link here) - can be frozen and defrosted

Cruskits - These are a great alternative to the 'baby section' rice crackers which are sooooo $$$$$$ which I use for snacks when we go out

Dried apricots

Dried apples

Sultanas 

Tinned pineapple pieces

Freeze dried fruit (I buy mine from Costco, Bellamy's Organic also have some)

Veggie Straws (I also buy these from Costco but you can get them from the heath food section)

Skinnymixer's Cheesy Pumpkin Puffs (link here) - freezes and reheats well

***With a spoon:
DRINKS:

Getting into their pizza pockets!


Wholemeal toast cheesy melt with Bolognese sauce #nomnomnom




Milo Iceblocks


Apple Pie Bliss Balls


Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Christmas Cupcake Wreath

This is a very simple and easy Christmas dessert or edible centrepiece idea! I was running short of time and just used Aldi's Vanilla Cake packet mix and spooned them into normal and mini sized muffin patties (this was non Thermomix days!).
 
 
I then made buttercream with a few drops of green food colouring and piped them onto the cupcakes with a star shaped frosting tip (I used the plastic ones that you can get in a kit in the baking section at Coles/Woolies). I topped the cupcakes off with Holly shaped sprinkles available around this time of year, however you can top it off with any type of sprinkles, edible glitter, grated chocolate, festive lollies, chocolates etc.
 
The decorating part of this is to place the muffins in the round shape of a wreath on a large round platter, and add a decorative festive ribbon at the bottom :)
 
If you have to travel with this dessert, I would bring the cupcakes un-iced in a plastic container, and pre make the buttercream icing, placing it straight into your icing bag, or ziplock bag, then assemble and ice the cupcakes at the party when you get there!
 
I recommend Wilton's Buttercream Icing recipe (non Thermomix and Thermomix methods) for these cupcakes as they hold up really well being displayed on hot summer days: