With the public holiday on Monday this week has simply flown by, which means it’s time for another Polka Dot Bride project.
American readers, don’t laugh but I had never even eaten pumpkin pie before (it’s not a ‘thing’ here) but nevertheless I wanted to try my hand at making it.
I had to adapt a recipe a fair bit (for example, using fresh pumpkin because you can’t buy pumpkin puree here) but it worked out well. It looks a little too browned on top but it was the perfect consistency.
It got the thumbs up from the family, especially from those who don’t have a big sweet tooth.
Find the recipe over on Polka Dot Bride today!
Brr! The temperature is dropping by the day as we head into winter next week. I’m on my third hot drink of the day just to try to warm up a bit.
With tea and coffee on the brain I’ve chosen to round up some of my favourite tea time essentials for you kitchen.
Tomorrow morning we are picking up a new car (!!) which is a tad exciting. We are planning to drive to the coast tomorrow and the hills on Sunday to take it for a spin.
Do you have any fun adventures planned for the weekend?
I have wanted a bar cart for the longest time. I was picturing a gorgeous rounded art deco or mid-century piece, but – even if the budget stretched to an antique – we simply would have nowhere to put it.
My brother-in-law’s partner is a keen painter and when we were admiring the latest piece in her studio recently I spotted the cute Ikea Råskog cart she used for her art supplies.
Not long after, I spotted it on the Ikea website for a steal ($49 down from $79) and immediately raced down to snap one up.
It makes a great bar cart for a small space. The middle shelf is adjustable so we could fit the tall bottles on the bottom shelf and glasses on the middle shelf.
We certainly don’t need hard liquor on hand on a daily basis (we’re mainly wine/beer drinkers) but it has freed up almost an entire cupboard in the kitchen. And you know how excited I get about additional storage space!
I’m also happy that the original mid-century anodised ice bucket that I inherited from my late great-auntie now has a suitable place to be displayed out in the open instead of shoved at the back of a cupboard.
I would still love an antique bar cart one day, but I didn’t hesitate about buying this for the same purpose as it’s such as versatile piece I know we’ll always find a use for it. We’ve already discussed an artists’ trolley and a bar cart, but how about a mobile craft station, bedside table, bathroom storage, cleaning supplies storage or perhaps its advertised use: extra kitchen storage?
Til then, I think I can feel a cocktail party coming on…
What do you think about bar carts? Do you have one?
Since it’s Birthday Month, let’s talk about party style!
I think we all tend to accumulate various party supplies over the years for each occasion, but there are a few basics that are the basis of any party decorating stash.
Choose unpatterned paper lanterns, garlands and clear votives for their versatility and budget-friendliness. Of course, food and drink are a big part of any celebration, so make sure you’ve got cake stands, food platters, glassware and cutlery covered.
I love a mix of neutral basics plus some colourful, quirky touches.
How about you, what’s your go-to party style?
I spotted a sale on Craftsy recently and went to see what tickled my fancy. I briefly toyed with the idea of a quilting course, having recently found out I’m going to be an auntie (!!) and had visions of cute modern baby quilts.
Then I remembered that I hate sewing. And I work like 60 hour weeks.
Thankfully I came to my senses and decided on something more suited to me: cakes!
My baking skills have definitely improved over the last few years, but I tend to stick to more basic homestyle icing that I can quickly (read: messily) slap on rather proper cake decorating. Unfortunately most cake decorating books and courses seem to be aimed at weddings or kids’ parties – neither of which I have need to cater for – or they are generally a bit old-fashioned.
I don’t need anything too fancy, but I’d love to be able to make some fun and contemporary party cakes.
So I’ve signed up for the Clean & Simple Cake Designs e-course with Jessica Harris (she of the gorgeous cake in the picture). I honestly have no idea when I am going to find the time to do it, but that’s the great thing about Craftsy classes: you can do them when it suits you in your own time.
Who’s going to join me?
This post is sponsored by Crust Gourmet Pizzas.
The Man and I love entertaining (as you may have figured out by now). Sometimes though, during busy times it’s easy to be put off by the time and effort required.
I admit I also have a tendency to get caught up in the menu planning, cooking and cleaning instead of simply focusing on what’s truly important: sharing a meal in our home with friends.
So when Crust invited me to host a pizza night I jumped at the chance to try out a new style (for me) of entertaining.
In the spirit of the no-fuss entertaining, instead of setting the table I simply placed all of the servingware and drinks on the table for guests to help themselves. It creates a much more relaxed atmosphere, don’t you think?
I did pick up a cheap bunch of dried flowers at the supermarket (couldn’t resist) but apart from that I relied on the tried-and-true effect of tealight candles to set the mood.
It was kind of strange actually being able to relax and have a drink with our guests instead of fussing around in the kitchen!
The food arrived and it looked just as appetising as the pictures – how often can you say that about takeaway food?
The salad dressing and pasta garnish were in separate little containers so everything looked fresh (and a bit fancy).
Our friends (who are quite the foodies I might add) agreed the pizzas were really tasty. The favourites were the pesto chicken and white prosciutto pizzas.
The blackforest crumble dessert pizza with salted caramel ice cream (phwoar!) was the perfect way to end the meal.
Thanks to the team at Crust Norwood for our awesome instant dinner party!
I can definitely see takeaway gourmet pizza being an excellent option for simple (yet impressive) weeknight entertaining.
What’s your entertaining style? Does all the cooking and work put you off entertaining?
Disclosure: I was compensated by Crust for writing this review. Opinions are my own.
We had both of our families over on the weekend for Mother’s Day. Champagne, pie and good conversation – if only every Sunday afternoon could be so divine!
I’ve shared my recipe today over on Polka Dot Bride.
Looking for a St Patrick’s Day treat without the scary green food colouring? I’ve got you covered.
Mosey over to Polka Dot Bride for the recipe (you won’t regret it).
So here’s the reason why I had a batch of homemade lemon curd sitting in my fridge last week! It’s a lovely hostess gift or wedding favour, especially if you have your own lemon tree (or know someone who does).
If you want to keep it all to yourself, you can pop it into readymade meringue or tart cases for an easy dessert or even just slather it onto a thick slice of fresh bread and top with quark cheese, cream cheese or cream.
Head over to Polka Dot Bride for the recipe plus the cute tag for you to print.
Photography Mel Boulden Photography