Friday, 29 August 2014

Best Friend Cake.

   
      The first time I had this cake, I was still in high school, in my uniform, sitting through another assembly on something unimportant. My best friend had made it and it was the best thing i'd ever tasted( I was also slightly jealous of her amazing baking skills!). Since that day, I have always referred to it as the best friend cake.
     Best Friend Cake, also known as the best damn chocolate fudge cake you will ever eat, is also one of the easiest cakes you will ever make. It doesn't require too many strange ingredients and turns out great-definitely one you want to make if you want to impress someone. These pictures were taken when I was in Montreal a month ago visiting the best friend. All her friends were definitely impressed with our baking skills when we made this!

Best Friend Cake

Ingredients

For the Cake
125g Butter
1 cup Sugar
2 Eggs
1 tsp Vanilla Essence
1/2 cup Cocoa powder
1/2 cup Hot Water
2 tsp Vinegar or lemon juice
1 cup Milk
1 ¾ cup Plain flour
1 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp 
Bicarbonate of Soda
a pinch of Salt

For the Icing
125 g Butter
2 cups 
Icing Sugar
tbsp Cocoa Powder

Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celcius.

Beat butter until creamy. Add sugar, eggs and vanilla. Beat until light and fluffy. Blend cocoa in hot water to make a smooth paste. Gradually add to creamed mixture. Add vinegar to milk to sour.

Sift together flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt and add to creamed mixture alternately with sour milk. Stir lightly but thoroughly. Pour into 2 greased 20cm (8”) sandwich tins and bake in a moderate oven for 30 minutes or until top springs back when lightly pressed. 

Cool in tins for 10 minutes then turn out and allow it to cool completely. Fill and ice with Chocolate  Icing.

Till next time..



Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Happiness in a bite.

      My interest in baking seems to be following a certain pattern- it dies down during University breaks and peaks a few days before an assignment is due or I have an exam. Todays procrastibaking recipe was Lemon Drizzle Cake, courtesy of the gorgeous Anna from Vivianna does Makeup. This super easy recipe (I have a thing for non complicated recipes-no judgement, okay!) is delicious, light and citrusy. Plus the lemon and granulated sugar glaze just takes it to the next level.
      On the topic of happiness, I recently read The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin. I first saw this book at an airport bookstore on my way to New Zealand and I was intrigued. I completely forgot about it until a month ago when my brother bought me some books for my birthday. Gretchen essentially conducts a life experiment, researching and trialling ways of becoming happier.  Each month she documents how she tried to improve one aspect of her life through these happiness experiments over the course of a year. I've been reading it on my way to University in the mornings and I'm considering starting my own happiness project-I mean, we can always be happier, right?
     Would you consider starting your own happiness project and if yes, what would you do?     

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

You are not alone.

                    It seems almost premonitory that I was studying about depression when news broke that the legend Robin Williams had died. I was genuinely shocked when I heard the news. Robin Williams was definitely a big part of my childhood- Aladdin was one of my favourite Disney movies. It's tragic to think that someone whose job it was to bring happiness and laughter into peoples life was silently suffering from within.
                    Depression is a big issue with one in seven people experiencing depression sometime in their life. Unfortunately, depression is regularly confused with grief that accompanies a tragic loss or event. To put it simply, depression and grief are not totally the same. Grief does not pervade all aspects of your life in the same way depression does.
                     Many of us silently suffer and do not seek help-only 60% of Australians sought treatment as of 2001. Without sounding preachy, if you are finding yourself struggling, know that you are not alone in this battle and that there are people who can help you out.
                     To find out more information or if you are looking for someone to help fight your battles with click here. I don't know how to end this so all I can say is, Genie, you're free.

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Montreal Photo Diary//Part 3

       Here are a selection of photos I took during my last few days in Montreal. As you'll see, I discovered my love for black and white photos- I apologise for the overdose of them! Montreal really surprised me, it was different to what I expected it to be like. You have Old Montreal with it's quaint corners and old timey charm, and then you have Piknic Electronik and the saturday night fireworks which are ultra-modern and futuristic.
This photo of the Biosphere Museum (I named it 'the egg') is probably one of my favourite photos I took on this trip.
        I went to Montreal to reconnect with an old friend and discover a new city. I loved the little I saw of Montreal and cannot wait to visit the rest of Canada! I hope you enjoyed the Montreal Photo Diary series.
Till next time...

Sunday, 3 August 2014

Montreal Photo Diary//Part 2

     Canada, eh? A truly beautiful country( I say this after seeing just ONE of it's cities!) The photos in the post are from a day spent in Old Montreal/Old Port. The gorgeous old buildings are filled with art galleries, boutiques, restaurants and the odd souvenir shop-it's any tourist's dream!
       Old Montreal was extremely picturesque and old timey. I loved there was a mix of the old and new with the old architecture and the modern art galleries. Old Montreal also has the snazziest looking Starbucks Cafe you will ever see! Stay tuned for the last instalment of the Montreal Photo Diary.
        Till next time..

Friday, 1 August 2014

Montreal Photo Diary//Part 1

WARNING: Picture heavy post.
 
   From New York, I headed up to Montreal to visit the best friend (pictured above). Instead of documenting this trip in words, I shall use pictures, because a picture is worth a thousand words. However, sometimes words will be used to clarify what exactly you are looking at, because sometimes a little clarity is nice.
         Yes, to clarify, that is a dog in a gardening store. Montreal has a thing for allowing the owner's dog to be in the shop!
         No, I do not own a turntable. Yes, I did buy ten records. But the owner was very friendly, and the records were only $4 each so it would have been foolish to not buy them.
         So that is Montreal through my eyes(or rather camera lens). Stay tuned for more-I spent a good seven days there! The parts of Montreal that I visited reminded me of Melbourne (but the coffee was terrible). It was definitely weird to travel 24 hours to the other side of the Earth to visit a city that is so similar to the one I live in-except where everyone mostly speaks in French.
Till next time!