Monday, December 12, 2011

Christmas cupcakes

While we have been really trying to be healthy this year, Christmas is a great time to have some fun baking. So for the boys school Christmas party we made some reindeer cupcakes.

Here is one of them. I just made chocolate cupcakes. Used pretzels for the horns, mini marshmallows for the eyes and jaffas for the nose.


I like everything to look neat and cute



The boys had a lot of fun 'helping' and they got a bit carried away.




They did a whole tray of these *sigh*. While I made a comment to them about how they never let anything be nice and pretty, this just encouraged them further!

Hope you having crazy Christmas fun at your house too!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Christmas Decorations- Gone Crazy!

This year I have been working as a teacher aide at the boys school. One day when I was helping in Prep I came across these cute Christmas decorations and thought it would be a lot of fun to do with my boys. I love doing craft and it can be hard coming up with things that boys would like to do. However the boys used their creativity in a different way then I expected!

This is the first one I did, I call it the classical gingerbread man. Hayden called it 'boring'.

 


These are some of the ones he created. On the left we have the 'crying girl' gingerbread man. on the right the 'ninja bread man'.

 



Here we have the 'robber' gingerbread man (Hayden painted a gun in his hand), Seth decorated one he calls 'the gingerbread man who ruined chirstmas' (see the evil grin).

 


We really got into them and created a whole stash!

 




While the boys creativity went in a different direction then expected, it was still a lot of fun. Though I made sure I kept a few decorations that looked pretty.

Merry Christmas everyone!







Thursday, December 1, 2011

Raspberry Jam

Nan's Raspberry Jam Recipe!

If there is one thing my whole extended family loves its my Nan (and her sisters) raspberry jam. My Nan, her two sisters and one brother grew up on a berry farm in Tasmania. This recipe is something her mother taught her.

To make the jam you need only a few things. Clean jam jars, sugar and raspberries andpreserve covers (I found them in the bakery section of the supermarket but Nan said they are sometimes in the glad wrap section too). While Nan used to go and pick her own, here we tried using defrosted frozen raspberries, and they seemed just as good.



We put the jam jars in the oven on 60 degrees, Nan said this was so they don't crack when you put the hot jam into them. It  sterilises themtoo.


For this batch we used 2kgs of raspberries to 1.5 kg of sugar. We mixed it together in a big pot. Then put it on the stove top to boil. We then boiled it for 5-10 minutes. To check it was done, we put a bit of jam on a plate and see if it looked like it was starting to set (though I have to admit this recipe is probably a little more runny then usual).


While the jam is still warm you carefully put the jam, using a little jug, into the jam jars.



Then the preserve covers can go on. You dab the covers into a saucer of water, to wet the centre and then carefully put them on the jars so they are nice and straight. Then pop the rubber bands on.

 


Looking nice and pretty! I let these cool on the bench for a while.

This recipe doesn't use fruit pectin to set which allows it to really have a fruity flavour. I love it on pancakes with ice cream, but fresh white bread is also delicious.

I am excited to have a different gift idea this Christmas!
Thanks Nan!