Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Chocolate Yogurt Muffins

The kids wanted muffins a couple of weeks ago and I wanted to bake something.
I had chocolate chips in the pantry and a big tub of plain yogurt in the fridge.
So I found a recipe which incorporated both!


This is a very easy recipe and the muffins turned out very tasty.

Here is a link to the recipe on allrecipes.com and here is a copy:

Ingredients:

 2 cups all-purpose flour
 1 cup white sugar
 3/4 cup chocolate chips
 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
 1 teaspoon baking soda
 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
 1 egg
 1 cup plain yogurt
 1/2 cup milk
 1/2 cup vegetable oil
 1/4 cup chocolate chips (I left this out since I ran out of chocolate chips!)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease 12 muffin cups or line with paper muffin liners.
Combine flour, sugar, 3/4 cup chocolate chips, cocoa powder, and baking soda in a large bowl.

Whisk egg, yogurt, milk, and vegetable oil in another bowl until smooth; pour into chocolate mixture and stir until batter is just blended. Fill prepared muffin cups 3/4 full and sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup chocolate chips.

Bake in preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes before removing to cool completely on a wire rack.

I made 24 regular muffins but it depends on the size of your muffin tin!


Monday, 21 July 2014

Potato Salad

Well it certainly feels like summer!
It has been hot. Tropical heat.
Which is quite uncharacteristic for the Netherlands.
I'm not complaining because I would much rather have the heat and sun than miserable rain!

We've been eating outside every day and mostly it is salads or cold meats but we've also had a few barbecues. I've made potato salad about three times in the last two weeks... because I had the ingredients in the house!



It is very simple. Boil 8 medium peeled potatoes in salted water until cooked (the amount of potatoes will depend on the number of people - I used about two medium sized potatoes per person). At the same time boil one egg in another pot with salted water. Drain both the potatoes and the egg and let them cool down. In the mean time finely dice one medium sized onion and cover with a tablespoon of white wine vinegar. Roughly cut the potatoes into bite size pieces. Pour the onion and vinegar over the slightly cooled potatoes. Now make the rest of the dressing.

Depending on your guests and their allergies you may or may not use some sour cream on the dressing. Mix a teaspoon dijon mustard with a tablespoon sour cream and about 4 tablespoons mayonaise. Mix well.

Peel the boiled egg, dice it and add to the potatoes. Add the mayonaise dressing and mix it all very well. Taste and add salt as needed. Lastly dress with finely sliced spring onion and chives.

Cover and keep refrigerated until ready to serve with the barbecue!


Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Illustrating Frames

I had a flash of inspiration and wanted to draw a little frame.
Probably because I actually love framing pictures.
I even went one step further and imported the drawing into illustrator and converted it to a vector drawing using image trace. Whoohoo. Sounds impressive, right? Well it is not really but it does mean I can do a bit more with the drawing if ever I should want to.

Here is the original drawing with some colour added framing Stella on her bike:



Here are two versions the converted drawing. Cool, right? I love this stuff!





Do you like it? I feel like drawing some more now :-)


Monday, 14 July 2014

Pasta with Tomato, Chicken and Spinach

The weather continues to annoy me.
I'm sick of the rain.
I want sun.

But since I have no control over it whatsoever I guess all I can do is accept the rain and go on with life. I had chicken and spinach and wanted to bake a pie. But then I got distracted and ran out of time so I ended up making a pasta dish instead.

A big tin of peeled tomatoes, chicken breasts cubed, lots of freshly washed spinach, onion, a clove of garlic, one carrot diced, olive oil and seasoning. That was all it took. Of course fresh basil from my herb garden and lots of grated Parmesan completed the dish.

Hope you have great week ahead!





Friday, 11 July 2014

Barbies!

The weather is strange.
Some days it is really hot but mostly this week it has rained. And I mean buckets of rain falling out of the sky, drowning my newly sown grass in front of the house and all my little plants in pots outside.

I looked out of my bedroom window and it looked like a swimming pool on top of our roof.
It is summer but it sure does not feel like it with all this rain!

At least the girls have their Barbies. We even bought them a Barbie campervan second hand a the annual neighbourhood jumble sale. They love it, and it keeps them quiet so I love it.

Hope you have a sunny weekend - I have plans for a barbecue so lets hope the weather plays along!!


Monday, 7 July 2014

Happiness Soup

It feels like forever since I last made Nigella's happiness soup. And somehow I missed it.
The comfort of a bowl filled with beautiful courgettes and rice, steaming hot.
The slight hint of lemon and the beautiful yellow colour from the turmeric.

Yes, it was high time for some happiness.






Friday, 4 July 2014

Cycling in the Woods

It is funny how Heidi is able to forget how to cycle.
You literally have to teach her again from scratch every time she gets on her bicycle.
It is funny, but it is also pretty annoying.

Hopefully we can practise a lot this summer so that she can start cycling to school with me. That would be amazing!

Stella on the other hand has taken to cycling in a big way, even though it is with side wheels. She just looks ahead of her and peddles like crazy. She also waves at everyone we come across... at least she's having fun!

Here's wishing you a fun filled weekend and a very happy 4th of July! :-)






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