red velvet cupcakes

red velvet cupcakes

red velvet cupcakes

Over the weekend we had the pleasure of escaping to an island paradise to watch my gorgeous little sister get married.

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mighty morning muffins

mighty morning muffinsmighty morning muffins

We’re heading away for the weekend to one of our favourite island destinations in the whole wide world to watch my beautiful baby sister marry the man of her dreams.

We are all so excited but very busy.  There is so much to organise when travelling with little ones and no matter how planned and thought out I think I am there always seems to be bits and pieces I miss and last minute dashes to the store are inevitable.  Today’s mad rush involved hunting down a pair of stockings for Miss G.

Packing food for the kids is always a challenge too.  So at the beginning of the week we got busy in the kitchen and baked a whole heap of goodies to freeze and take with us.   In our lunch box we have coconut banana pancakes, delicious oat choc chip cookies, pea and mint fritters and a batch of these gorgeous golden mighty morning muffins.

These muffins really are mighty and so jam packed with nutritional goodness.  The combination of oats, sultanas, carrot and banana make them a hearty baby led weaning breakfast and will keep the little ones going well and truly until lunch time.

These muffins couldn’t be simpler to prepare simply whisk together the wet ingredients along with the banana and carrot, fold through the dry ingredients, pop into a muffin tin and bake.  This particular recipe makes approximately 15 muffins and freezes beautifully. Simply allow the muffins to cool completely, wrap individual portions, pop into a freezer safe container and stash in the deep freeze for up to three months.

To create your own batch of mighty morning muffins simply…

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raspberry swirl teacakes

raspberry swirl tea cakesraspberry swirl tea cakes

To celebrate the arrival of Her Royal Highness Princess Charlotte of Cambridge we did a little princess inspired baking and came up with these raspberry swirled teacakes.

These pink hued babies are absolutely delicious and a complete breeze to prepare.  My little princess and I stirred these darlings together and had them nestled in the oven baking away to gorgeous goldeness in less than ten minutes.  To accompany the teacakes we rippled a little of our raspberry sauce throughout a tub of vanilla bean specked greek thick yoghurt.  The combination of teacake, raspberry swirled yoghurt and fresh berries creates a lovely little dessert fitting for any princess.

We made a few changes to the original teacake recipe to ensure these raspberry swirl teacakes are also full of nutritional goodness.  We opted for wholemeal flour instead of regular plain, we also added a cup of almond meal which is high in protein, low in carbohydrates and low in sugars.  We also left out the white sugar and instead sweetened our batter with a half cup of maple syrup instead.

In terms of baby led weaning these little teacakes make a wonderful treat when served alongside a good dollop of yoghurt and a handful of fresh berries.  The shape and soft texture of the teacakes also make them wonderful for baby led weaning beginners.  Mr H. had no problem demolishing his teacake for morning tea.  These teacakes also freeze beautifully.  Simply wrap individual portions, pop into a freezer safe container and stash in the deep freeze for up to three months.

To make your own batch of pink hued raspberry swirl tea cakes simply…

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spaghetti polpette

spaghetti polpettespaghetti polpette

Autumn finally arrived.

The morning air is now cool and crisp, the skies are clear and blue and each evening we snuggle under the throw nestled together on the sofa.

And with the cooler weather comes the need for a little wholesome hearty cooking so today we spent the day rolling together these beautiful polpette.

Polpette are italian meatballs, gently cooked in simmering tomato sauce and they are delicious.  Spiked with breadcrumbs, garlic, parmesan, basil and a little tomato passata they are moist, full of flavour and the perfect autumnal dinner.

We served our meatballs with a little spaghetti and the kids absolutely loved them.

Eating pasta, especially the red sauce variety is very messy work so I was so pleased to discover the messy mealtime smock by Little Chomps.

This wonderful smock is designed by a gorgeous Aussie mum and is perfect for baby led weaning!  Not only is it waterproof, wipeable, machine-washable, and provide better all-round protection for sleeves, laps and sides than other sleeved bibs or cotton feeding smocks but it doesn’t have that silly plastic bag sound that so many other smocks do.  In the past I have tried other smocks but my little ones were too distracted with the sound of the plastic rather than eating which was totally frustrating.  Mr H. absolutely loves his new smock and I do too!  Yay to less washing!  I’ll also be hosting a giveaway for these gorgeous smocks very soon so please stay tuned!

spaghetti polpettelittle chomps

To create your own spaghetti polpette simply…

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baked french toast

baked french toastbaked french toast

Mr H. has officially started baby led weaning and he couldn’t be happier.

For the past couple of weeks he’s been so interested in watching his big sister, mummy and daddy eat and when he started to display the skills needed to self feed we couldn’t wait to get started.

So far our little guy is a huge fan of sweet potato wedges, banana, strawberries, rockmelon, wholemeal toast and zucchini fritters.

And to officially welcome Mr H. into the wonderful world of food we celebrated over Sunday brunch with this lovely batch of gorgeously golden baked french toast.

This french toast is perfect for baby led weaning beginners for so many reasons.  Firstly the recipe has no added sugar, the eggy mixture is simply sweetened with a dash of maple syrup and a good squeeze of orange juice and zest.  And because this version of french toast is baked rather than fried there is no need for any butter or cooking oil.  This method of cooking also creates perfectly textured bread that can withstand the iron grip of a baby led weaning beginner yet is soft enough to nibble on with ease.  Mr H. had no problem whatsoever gobbling up his Sunday morning breakfast along with some fresh berries.

To create your own batch of gorgeously golden baked french toast simply…

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savoury muffins

savoury muffinssavoury muffins

Wanting to cram a little more vege into Miss G. after a nasty tummy bug I decided a batch of savoury muffins hiding 3 cups of gorgeous vegetables and a little cheese were needed.

And these gorgeously golden vege flecked cheesy darlings are delightful.

The golden yellow crispy crust is the perfect contrast to the tender vege flecked crumb and the combination of the sweet vegetables with the tasty cheese creates the most wonderful flavour.  Miss G. gobbled hers up still warm from the oven along with a few sticks of cucumber and a couple of halved cherry tomatoes.

Instead of mixing the muffin batter together by hand, I opted instead to use my food processor.  Firstly the grating attachment makes light work of shredding the carrot, zucchini and cheese and the blade effortlessly pulses together the batter and further distributes the vege and cheese into the crumb which is perfect for those little ones that tend to eat around chunks of nutritional goodness in their food.

If you’re looking for a batch of muffins to freeze and pop into lunch boxes during the week, these babies freeze beautifully.  Simply wrap the individual muffins in a little cling film, pop into a freezer bag or container and stash in the deep freeze for up to 3 months.  I pop the frozen muffins into our lunch box and by the time lunch rolls around they are perfectly defrosted and ready to eat.  These muffins are also a great no-fuss less-mess eating option for when you’re out and about.

Also, for those little ones just beginning their baby led weaning journey the texture of these muffins is perfect.  The muffins are firm enough to withstand a tight grip yet soft enough to be easily eaten.  When Grace was this age I used to slice the muffin into quarters and she had no trouble picking up the pieces to devour.

To create these gorgeously golden savoury muffins chock full of vege simply…

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caramelised banana dutch pancake with fresh strawberries

caramelised banana dutch pancake with fresh strawberriescaramelised banana dutch pancake with fresh strawberries

I adore everything about winter.

The cosy clothes, endless cups of hot tea and days spent with the slow cooker bubbling away in the kitchen are my idea of heaven.

The late winter sunrise also guarantees a greatly appreciated sleep in most mornings and when Miss G. finally stirs she is more than happy to huddle, snuggle and cuddle under the warm cosy covers until we finally pluck up enough courage to face the frosty morning together.

Most mornings we make our way straight to the kitchen to heat up our beloved oats with a little stewed apple but this morning I decided something a little extra special was required so we put together this super simple caramelised banana dutch pancake with fresh strawberries.

Although I have a very special place in my heart for traditional pancakes, on a frosty winter morning when immediate warming nourishment is required I much prefer the fuss free nature of the Dutch pancake.  There is no standing over a fry pan endlessly flipping pancakes, simply pour the batter over a little caramelised fruit and pop into a piping hot oven.  Fifteen minutes later a perfectly puffed and gorgeously golden fruit studded pancake emerges ready to be devoured.

Todays incarnation of our fuss free pancake included caramelised banana and fresh strawberries and really was baby led weaning winter breakfast perfection.  The texture of the pancake is perfect for little hands to hold and nibble away on with ease and when served alongside fresh strawberries and a little yoghurt, this breakfast will have your little one satisfied all morning long.

To create this winter warming caramelised banana dutch pancake with fresh strawberries simply…

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