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Blueberry muffins

I bought a few fresh blueberries the other day and I just couldn’t resist making some blueberry muffins! I prepared the following ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups of plain flour
  • 1/2 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 5 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 3/4 cup plain yogurt
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon peel
  • 3/4 cups blueberries
  • In a large mixing bowl, I started by beating the butter and sugar together until fluffy. I continued beating the mixture and added the eggs followed by the grated lemon peel.

    Next I whisked together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. I added one half of these dry ingredients to the butter mixture, added one third of the yogurt, then the remaining dry ingredients and the remaining yogurt until everything was mixed thoroughly. Finally, I folded in the blueberries.

    I divided the mixture in greased muffin tins (12 small ones)…

    … and left them do their magic in a preheated oven (180 C) for about 30 minutes until they were golden brown and ready for consumption 🙂

    When they cooled down I divided them in a few bags, tied a ribbon around them and spread the calories around 🙂

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    Figolli anyone?

    We just finished decorating our homemade figolli and we’re very proud of them!!!!

    See our hard work here:

    We also made some traditional dove figolli, inspired by the Italian ‘colomba pasquale’:

    And this is what they look like right now – sitting pretty in our dining room – since we must let the royal icing dry a little before we wrap them:

    I would love to see your figolli pictures too so please send me some 🙂

    Cycling in style

    I love vintage looking bicycles….

    I used to wonder why people living in Malta & Gozo don’t cycle more -everywhere is so close and the roads are so congested! Now that I live in Valletta and work in Floriana, I am actually considering using a bike rather than my junky, good for nothing car! Why bother moving the car every 2 hrs when you can park the bike right outside!?

    I fell in love with this Vintage Velorbis bike and I have to have it!

    My only worry is that wearing high heels and skirts might not be an option anymore… but what the hell – this girl pulls it off so why shouldnt I??!!!!

    Any ideas where I could get one from?

    Tea party

    I’m having a tea party! I haven’t set the date and I haven’t even invited anyone yet but I am DEFINITELY having a tea party!!!  How could I not when I am inspired by such amazing looking cupcakes!

    I need to plan a menu now… any ideas??!!!

    Sewing inspirations

    My idea of putting up a hem is placing a few safety pins on the underside of my trousers. I have never owned a sewing machine in my life….  in fact, anyone who knows me would say that if I ever tried using one, I would end up hurting myself in true ‘Clumsy Liz’ style…and yet, I have always wanted to learn how to sew.

    Whilst browsing some time ago I came across Lotta Jansdotter and I fell in love with her Scandinavian designs and fabric. I bought her book – Simple Sewing – which is filled with relatively easy patterns (thats her take anyway!) and some great and inspiring pictures….. so it’s no surprise that I have plucked up the courage to finally start a sewing class and borrow a sewing machine from my grandmother (who hasn’t put it to good use in years anyway!).

    I have all these dreams that I am going to be able to make my own skirts:

     

    ….or something original to add to my outfits:

    …and perhaps even make some lovely cushions for my home:

    Can’t wait 🙂

    Figolli Time!!

    Figolli are Traditional Maltese Easter Sweets made with pastry and almonds. I intended to make some figolli closer to Easter but an opportunity came along to have a cooking lesson from Pippa Mattei and Alexia Mizzi at the Taste School and so I took it!… and I had a really great time too 🙂

    The best way to approach making figolli is to tackle it in 3 stages – there is the actual biscuit, the almond filling and the decoration of the figolla (the colourful icing on the top + the royal icing around the figolla). We started by tackling the royal icing first (consisting of egg white, icing sgar, lemon juice and glycerine) since Pippa suggested we let it sit for a while so that any bubbles that come up to the surface disappear by the time we actually needed to use it…

    Next we made the dough for the biscuit by mixing plain flour, sugar and salted butter:

    After we added some lemon and orange rind, egg yolks and some water and mixed everything in a kenwood and it looked like this (and tasted yum yum too!):

    We then chose our preferred figolli cutters (which in my case were a fish and a butterfly) and rolled out the dough quite thinly. We then cut two identical sized shapes:

    In the meantime, we prepared the almond filling which consisted of ground almonds, sugar, lemon juice, egg white and ilma zahar and spread this out on the bottom biscuit, leaving a bit of space around the filling:

    After dabbing some water on the outer part of the bottom biscuit, we placed an identical biscuit on top of the almond filling and pressed down, placed in a preheated oven and baked for 20 mins:

     

     Whilst the biscuit was baking we prepared the icing sugar in 4 different coloursred, blue, green & yellow):

    After this we spread the icing over the figolli and decorated them in whatever way we pleased…:

    … although I  needed some help with the royal icing:

    I was very happy with my first attempt at making figolli (although I must say they tasted much better 24hrs later) and I am really looking forward to trying them on my own next week – my family is expecting one each!

    Luv Luv Linen

    I love linen! I like the feel, the look, even the way it creases… I love it especially for the dining room and I intend to invest in some lovely white linen curtains very very soon. 

    This is my inspiration:

    I also love the idea of having chairs covered in linen fabric (but i might consider actually having them in one or two colours rather than one):

    This dining table looks so relaxed and makes the room look so cosy too:

    If you have any pictures which inspire you, feel free to send me a link together with a comment. I would really like to know what you think!