Recipes

Gift Guide

22.12.18

There is officially two and half more days for Christmas shopping left, so it’s not too late to pick up some last minute gifts from three of my favourite stores – West Elm, Pottery Barn and for the little people in your life, Pottery Barn Kids. I checked out all three stores recently with gifting in mind and these are the things that I loved. Here are images of the selection in my home – I hope you feel inspired!

Our always growing book collection is seen here getting a little support from the  Colour Pop Crystal Bookends (Set of 2). Also pictured is the very cute but cool marble box in black and white. Perfect for jewellery or other treasures.

Sunday has recently discovered the yumminess of a delicious waffle for breakfast – definitely a ‘sometimes treat’ that deserves the cute place setting seen above, all from Pottery Barn Kids. Cambria Plate and  Placemats in Rugby Grey, quality Riveted cutlery in white are complimented by the fun Mason Jars with straws. Perfect for a milkshake!

Sunday’s desk from Pottery Barn Kids is still used by her every day, years since she got it – she loves to display her art on the cork board hutch. Also pictured here is the handy pencil caddy/lazy susan.

I’m always inspired by the tabletop range at Pottery Barn, and fell in love with the gingham cork placemats (which come in red to0). Brushed gold flatware is still on trend this year (I love pairing it with the navy), and the elegant white Fleur dinnerware range from Monique Lhuillier is so stunning in the full set. Also pictured are the beautiful indigo napkins that are perfect for Christmas with the festive napkin rings.

The deco range at West Elm seems to get better and better every year. The copper and cane tray would be perfect when entertaining for that touch of glam, and I’ve been loving filling the house with the gorgeous scent of the Apocethary incense (fresh balsam fir, citrusy grapefruit and warm + cosy musk).  Also pictured are handy stocking stuffers – the cute range of notebooks, also from West Elm.


Finally, I have  an organised way to store my jewels. I’m obsessed with this West Elm  Jewellery Box. The proportions are so generous, I can keep everything in the one place on my bedside table.


I’ve positioned the Apothecary Incense by the kitchen sink, I feel it goes so well with our gold mixer tap!

Lastly, a hint of what I’ll be drinking this silly season. All sitting pretty in the kitchen is the  Bleecker Bar ice bucket and Martini jug. Glassware also pictured is called the Library Hand-Cut Double Old-Fashioned Glass.

And, incase you were wondering – a recipe for the perfect Aperol Spritz:

  1. Fill the glasses generously with ice cubes.
  2. First pour three parts of Prosecco (75ml) over the ice.
  3. Then, pour three parts Aperol (50ml) into each glass in a circular movement.
  4. Finish with a dash of soda (25ml)
  5. Garnish with a slice of orange.

    Enjoy! I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas x

Rafferty Turned 2

05.03.18

Two years with our little butter ball in our lives has flown, and we hosted a little gathering for his birthday on the weekend. When I say a little gathering, the boy has around 15 cousins at last count, so any small family event turns in to a party for us!

The highlight for many was the ridiculously decadent ‘Digger Cake’ that Sunny and I made. The birthday boy loved it, and we had so much fun making it. Check out Pinterest for lots of Digger Cake inspiration – the bigger mess you make, the better it look it seems.


The night before was that usual mad scramble to get organised for the party. Although the decoration side of things was certainly saved with the speedy arrival of the gorgeous party accessories that came from Melt Bake Party. The fab store is my favourite online destination for all your cool and beautiful party supplies.

I guess I can relax on the party front now for a few months, until Sunday’s 6th birthday party rocks around in May. She’s already asking ‘how many sleeps’. Give me strength!!

Briar x

Healthier

01.03.18

Apologies, it’s been too long between posts on here. It’s been a busy start to the year in our household. We officially now have a schoolgirl, and with that has brought a whole new set of routines to follow in the house (wow, that afternoon bell rocks around quickly doesn’t it)!  Our girl was so ready to start her school journey and it’s been smooth sailing so far (touch wood), she is just so keen to learn!! I’ve never seen such daily excitement from her, “Mum!! It’s library day today, can you believe it?!” The enthusiasm for school is very sweet, I’m really hoping it lasts. If she’s anything like me, she’ll love school right up to her last day of Year 12. I was definitely a girl who focused on the things I loved though (Art, Drama, English), grab the bull by the horns type of student. Although, let’s just say I wouldn’t be too keen on bumping in to my Maths and Science teachers from the past, I now cringe at my lack of interest and chatterbox tendencies in their classes.

In other news, Baby Raff recently turned 2! Our little butter ball is having a party this weekend, so I’ll be sure to share some photos. The digger cake Sunday and I have planned is going to be epic (I hope so, anyway).

I also recently turned 37. Bit of a nothing birthday really, but what has come about is a healthier take on life. It’s been on a slow burn since I started a new fitness regime at my local F45 last August, but these past 5 weeks I’ve really ramped it up. With a healthier diet and exercise daily, I’m certainly feeling better for it (I actually don’t think I’ve actually felt this fit/strong in my life). I’ve also become a devoted smoothie maker. The trick is to have a stocked pantry and fridge. Armed with a powerful Nutri Bullet, here is my favourite breakfast lately:


Nutty Protein Smoothie

Ingredients
1 frozen banana
2 tbsp vanilla protein powder (I’ve been using this one)
2 tsp. peanut butter
4 almonds
1 tsp. macca powder
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 cup ice

Directions
Add all the ingredients in a blender, and blend until a smooth consistency is formed.
I like to drink mine through a straw, milkshake style. Delicious and nutritious – this will seriously keep you feeling full until lunchtime!

Enjoy,

Briar x

Fridge Pickles

23.01.18

We’ve just got back from a holiday on the south coast at my parent’s place and my Mum served pickled cucumbers with grilled salmon fillets for dinner one night. I’ve thought about the delicious flavours since so I made a batch when we got home. The easy dish will keep in the fridge for up to a week. I’m planning on serving it with a curry one night and grilled fish on another day this week. Here is the very easy recipe:

  • 1 cup water
  • 1/3 cup vinegar (apple cider, white, and rice wine are all good)
  • 1/3 cup sugar (optional)
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons salt
  • finely sliced garden cucumbers (about 2 cups)
  • finely sliced red onion (about 1/2 cup)
  • additional vegetables as you like (capsicum, whole cherry tomatoes, etc.)

    METHOD

  • In a small bowl add the water, vinegar, sugar, and salt. Stir to combine and until the sugar and salt have dissolved. Add the cucumber and onion. Taste and adjust the ingredients to your liking.
  • All the cucumbers should be covered in the brine, if you have lots of cucumber or are making a big batch, make more brine.
  • Let the mixture rest in the fridge until you are ready to eat. The flavours develop over time, so an overnight soak is great.

Enjoy!

Briar x

A bundt cake

12.01.18

We’ve had a bit of rain recently, so Sunday and I decided to have a break from the outdoors and do a spot of baking. Our Smeg freestanding cooker has been in our lives for nearly a year now, and I can’t fault it, I can honestly say I enjoy cooking more than ever because of this gorgeous appliance. I even thought to myself recently that if we ever moved I’d have to take her with me.

The baking session was also the perfect excuse to try out our new Bundt cake pan from Williams Sonoma. Sunday was desperate to make a giant jelly when she saw the shape, but I convinced her to try out making Donna Hay’s yoghurt and lemon cake.

Let me begin my saying I am not an amazing baker, but this pan makes you feel like Martha Stewart. Out popped the cake looking like a big and golden masterpiece!

It’s been a while since I’ve shared a recipe on here, trust me when I tell you how easy and delicious this cake is.

LEMON YOGHURT CAKE

Ingredients
¾ CUP (180ML) VEGETABLE OIL2 EGGS
1 TABLESPOON FINELY GRATED LEMON RIND
¼ CUP (60ML) LEMON JUICE
1 CUP (280G) PLAIN GREEK-STYLE (THICK) YOGHURT, OR GOAT’S MILK YOGHURT
1¾ CUPS (385G) CASTER (SUPERFINE) SUGAR
2 CUPS (300G) SELF RAISING (SELF-RISING) FLOUR
2 TABLESPOONS THYME LEAVES
2 TABLESPOONS THYME LEAVESMethod

  1. Preheat oven to 160ºC (325ºF). Place the oil, eggs, lemon rind, lemon juice, yoghurt and sugar in a large bowl and whisk to combine. Sift over the flour and stir until smooth.
  2. Pour into a well greased 24cm non-stick Bundt tin and bake for 50–55 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Allow the cake to stand in the tin for 5 minutes.
  3. To make the lemon icing, mix to combine the sugar, lemon juice and boiling water.
  4. Carefully turn the cake out onto a cake stand and spoon over the icing while the cake is still hot. Sprinkle with thyme leaves and allow to set for 10 minutes before serving. Serves 10–12.

Lemon Icing 
1 CUP (160G) ICING  SUGAR, SIFTED
1 TABLESPOON LEMON JUICE
½ TABLESPOON BOILING WATER

I’ve always loved so many of Donna Hay’s recipes – and this cake will definitely be my go-to when I need something quick and delicious. Enjoy!

Briar x

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