Posted on

Beetroot + Peppermint Brownies

I’m going to give credit to the website where I got this recipe from.
Although I  was working with this recipe for an Essential Oil party I thought it would be a right fit to add some Peppermint essential oil.

  • 500g whole raw beetroots (3-4 medium beets)
  • 100g unsalted butter, plus extra for the tin
  • 200g bar plain chocolate (70% cocoa)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2-3 drops of Peppermint essential oil
  • 250g golden caster sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 100g plain flour
  • 25g cocoa powder


  1. Wear a pair of gloves to stop your hands from staining, then top, tail and peel the beetroot – you’ll need about 400g flesh. Roughly chop and put into a large bowl. Add a splash of water. cover, then microwave on High for 12 mins or until tender.
  2. Preheat oven to 180C/160C fan gas 4. While the beetroot cooks, butter then line a 20 x 30cm traybake or small roasting tin. Roughly chop the chocolate and cut the butter into cubes. Tip the cooked beetroot into a sieve, drain off any excess liquid, then put into a food processor or blender with the chocolate, butter, vanilla and peppermint. Whizz until the mix is as smooth as you can get it. The chocolate and butter will melt as you do this.
  3. Put the sugar and eggs into a large bowl, then beat using an electric hand whisk until thick, pale and foamy, about 2mins. Spoon the beetroot mix into the bowl (it won’t look pretty at this stage, but bear with me), then use a large metal spoon to fold it into the whisked eggs. Try to conserve as much air in the mixture as you can. Sift in the flour and cocoa powder, then gently fold these in to make a smooth batter.
  4. Pour into the prepared tin and bake for 25mins or until risen all over, with just the merest quiver under the centre of the crust when you shake the pan. Cool completely in the tin, then cut into squares.

Posted on

Mee Siam Recipe

I’m not great at holding off the first bite before taking a picture but I couldn’t resist. It was that good!

I though about it. If I should reveal what to me IS the most sacret recipe of all time. When I was searching for someone who could teach me, I found no one who would be willing to reveal their most prized secret to me. It was hard enough to find someone who made a mean plate of Mee Siam let alone someone who made a mediocre place and was willing to share their recipe.

The reason why I’m sharing is because I learned this recipe from the most unlikely suspect. My late Grandmother’s Helper. What’s better still she’s not from here. She’s actually from Myanmar. How she learned this recipe beats me but I’m sure glad she shared it with me and even took the time to help prepare each ingredient for me so that I could have a look at the what the quantity of each was before she loaded it into the pot. So here goes, Mee Siam recipe from Belle to me to you:



  • x1 can of Knife brand Salted Soya Beans – Blended to a paste
  • x2 Onions
  • x6 Garlics
  • x1 Packet of Garlic Chives (aka Kuchai)
  • x1 Small Packet of Malabar Chilli Paste (This is not as spicy but gives a nice red chilli color without overloading on the spice)
  • x3 Tblsp Dry Chilli Paste (In accordance to your spice preference) ~ Click here for recipe
  • Eggs (x1 per/person) – Hard boiled
  • Bean Sprouts (your preferred amount)
  • Lemon (sliced in half for serving with)
  • Fresh Tofu, cut into cubes and shallow fried
  • x1 Packet of Bee Hoon. Soak in semi-hot water (prevent it from getting too soft) and set-aside
  • Salt + Sugar (to your taste)
  • x1 Tblsp Assam Paste (Look for the brown version not the black) – Mix with a little water and extract the assam juice
  • Coconut Milk – about 1/2 cup
Knife Brand Salted Soya Beans


Garlic Chives
Garlic Chives
Malabar Chilli Paste
Malabar Chilli Paste

Method – Dry Frying the Mee Siam Noodles

  1. Heat oil in wok or frying pan
  2. Add in x1 Onion + Garlic – Fry until caramalised
  3. Add in 4-5 tables Chilli Paste + x3 tblsp Dry Chilli Paste
  4. x2 Tblsp Salted Soya Bean Paste
  5. Add little Salt & approx x2 Tblsp Sugar
  6. Add in 1/2 the Kuchai + Beans Sprouts
  7. Add in the pre-soaked Bee Hoon (drained) – You might need to cut the Bee Hoon if you find it too long

Method – Mee Siam Gravy

  1. Heat gravy pot with little oil
  2. Fry balance onions and garlic
  3. x2 Tblsp Chilli Paste (the non-spicy one)
  4. x3 Tblsp Spick Dry Chilli Paste (or to your preference)
  5. Add balance Kuchai
  6. Add Soya Bean Paste and fry it all together a little longer
  7. Add hot water
  8. Add assam juice
  9. Add the Sugar (to your preferred sweetness)
  10. Add x2 Tblsp coconut milk

…and there you have it. Mee Siam. I hope that you try it out and leave a comment letting me know what you think of this recipe and/or if you made any modifications to it to make it better.

Sheila x

Posted on

American Sponge Cake ~ Success!


This sponge cake recipe is full-proof! I have made it twice already and both with wonderful results!
This is from someone who hardly bakes. Great slices of cake to pack into kids lunch boxes as a special school tea cake to have them thinking of their Mommy. 😉

Taken from The Cake Bible ~ Rose Levy Beranbaum

Ingredients (all in room temperature):

  1. 2 tablespoons water
  2. 1/5 teaspoon vanilla
  3. 1 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  4. 1 1/3 cups sifted cake flour
  5. 1 cup sugar
  6. 6 large eggs, separated yolks & whites
  7. 3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar


  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • In a small bowl combine water, vanilla & lemon zest
  • Remove 1 tablespoon of the sugar and reserve to beat with the whites
  • In another smaller bowl which together the flour and 3 tablespoons of the sugar
  • In a large mixing bowl beat the yolks and the remaining 3/4 cup sugar on high speed for 5minutes or until the mixture is very thick and ribbons with dropped from the beater.
  • Lower the speed and gradually add the water mixture. Increase to high speed beat for 30 seconds.
  • Shift the flour mixture over the yolk mixture without mixing in and set aside.
  • Beat the whites until foamy, add the cream of tartar, and beat until soft peaks form when the beater is raised.
  • Beat in reserved 1 tablespoon sugar and beat until very stiff peaks form when the beater is raised slowly.
  • Add 1/3 of the whites to the yolk mixture and with a large skimmer or rubber spatula fold until incorporated. Gently fold in the remaining 2 batches.
  • Pour into the pan. (It will a little more then 1/2 full)
  • Run a small metal spatula or knife though the batter to prevent air pockets.
  • Back for 30 to 35 minutes or until golden brown and the cake tester comes out clean.
  • Suspend the pan tube opening over the neck of a wine or soda bottle well above the counter to allow it to cool completely. (think might take about 1hr)
  • Loosen the sides with a long metal spatula. Invert onto a wire rack or serving plate. Wrap airtight

This stores for a good 5-6days in the refrigerator or frozen for 2months.

Posted on

One for the Weekend

I’m writing this blog early as I know the weekend is fast approaching. (it’s only wednesday) Yikes!!
But let’s not forget Mother’s Day is this Sunday. What have you thought to do for your mummy?

Here are some things of interest found.

First lets start off with a cool cocktail to kick off the weekend.
Honeyed French 75

This gorgeous twig ring from LEIF. You can buy it for your mum or if you’re a mum like me can shout it out on a wish list for some lovely fellow to see. 😉

Twig Ring

Or maybe some DIY gifts.
Find out how to make photographic tiles here.
Tile Art

Learn how to make your very own scented candles here.
Scented Candles

How about some baking! – Recipe
Banana Nut Bread

Links to all images mentioned above

Posted on

Tea Time

Surfing around my favourite blogs this afternoon while the children are down for their afternoon nap and I came across this Buttermilk Beignets from Joy the Baker. Remember having them in New Orleans with a simple cup of coffee… it was perfect.

Buttermilk Beignets

I’m seriously going to consider making this next week and hopefully be able to turn this around tea time next weekend.

Check out the recipe and let’s make them together! x

Posted on

Party Food Ideas

I like to think that I’m a brilliant cook. However reality is that I’m still very wet behind the ears when it comes to hosting dinner parties. I always play it safe and make dishes that I’ve made many times before but try to get away with a new dessert or appetizer. Anyway, who’s to say that every dinner party needs to be stressful.

Especially when its easy to pinch some gorgeous recipies from Camille Styles

Or this Chicken and White Bean Chilli (Recipe Here)

Posted on

25 Days Counting Down

The countdown begins. It’s 25 days till Christmas. My Christmas tree is up, wrapping papers and ribbons all stocked up, I’m googling gingerbread recipes… What Have I Turned Into…?!? I blame it on being a mother celebrating for the first time where my son is actually old enough to enjoy it.

Image from Apartment 34

Back to the subject of baking, I can see myself doing lots of baking in this kitchen. I’m in love with the stone sink and counter tops. Glass windows bringing in natural light into the space… Sure it’ll be a nightmare to clean but that’s not the point.

Image from Apartment 34

Image from Apartment 34

Moving on from dream kitchens to dream bathrooms. How would this suit you?

Image from Apartment 34

And what about this to die for Laundry/Whatever room. I’ll never be behind with the washing… Promise!

Image from Design Darling

I love looking at this corridor. First of all I love dark hardwood floors paired with a light rug and white walls. The matching wooden ceiling and lighting polishes up the walkway very nicely.

Posted on

Recipe – Lobster Summer Rolls

When you live in the tropics like we do, doesn’t take much to fill us. Eating rich foods in fact bloats me up like a balloon. All we need is something light, fresh and paired up with a nice glass of wine.

My favorite dish of all time is the Vietnamese Summer Rolls.
Thanks to Zannie for sending me this recipe. I can’t wait to try this out with my family tomorrow night. (Need to get my head around shopping for the ingredients today)

You can get the full recipe here of course like me, you can swap lobster with prawns. The main thing about this that I love is that the all ingredients (except for prawns) are not cooked and especially the herbs are fresh!

So try this out and let me know how you go! I’ll be documenting my attempt at this tomorrow night.

G’Day Everyone!