Make up, how long is the ‘use by’?

It was pointed out to me many years ago what this little symbol on the side of a moisturiser/make up/lotion bottle or jar meant by a friend who works in the beauty industry. I myself use facial moisturiser and body lotions most days, the Aussie weather can dry out your skin pretty quickly even in winter. I’m not a huge make up wearer though, mascara being my most used.

This symbol means that once the jar or bottle is opened you have 12 months to use it, it loses is goodness after this time. The months do vary depending on what you’ve opened and of course the time symbol.

I think this is why I have a penchant for dating my items because there are so many different dates to be observed it’s easier to remember when you’ve written the date in big bold numbers. Have I said I love my sharpie marker lol.

Do I use over the dates yes, I don’t think there is anyone out there who doesn’t. Most commonly it’s because you just know that you opened it sometime last year, or maybe the year before and you paid good money so therefore you’re going to use it all.

At least if you know your opening date you can make an informed decision or  better guess as to how much over that goodness date you go.


Tinned fruit cake

The ladies at work the other day were talking about a new way to make a cake that was quick and easy. It involved a packet cake mix and a small tin of fruit of your choice, in this case she mentioned pears.

Including juice empty tin into a bowl and lightly mash the fruit. Add cake sachet and fold to mix.

Bake in a 180*C oven for 30-35 minutes or until cooked. Serve. She raved about it.

Personally I can’t say I liked it. I didn’t think it was any easier than popping an egg and milk into the bowl and mixing by hand. I also thought it was sweet as even though the fruit was in ‘natural juice’ I still find the juice sweet along side the sugar already in the cake mix. It was dense/heavy, maybe some extra baking powder? As a dessert with some custard or ice cream I may be swayed but not as a stand alone cake.

My personal choice would be to make the cake as stated on the back of the packet adding the roughly chopped pears (no juice) and baking.

Strange thing is I’ve done this with crushed pineapple, it worked and I liked it, go figure!

Just my thoughts, has anyone else tried this and with what fruit, what were your thoughts?



A Pumpkin soup twist

I made myself pumpkin soup on the weekend, hubby hates it so it was all mine, I can have it any way I want and this was my twist.

Substitute half the stock liquid with coconut milk (mine was lite) and add about a rounded teaspoon of curry powder and some coriander leaves (mine were dried). Throw it all  in a crock pot and let it simmer during the day.

My pumpkin soup usually consists of pumpkin, chicken stock, salt and pepper. I like it reasonably thick so I start off less is more until my pumpkin is cooked then add more stock as needed. Broccoli and cauliflower if I have them are also added. The whole lot is then blitzed with a stick blender at the end.

There are no hard and fast rules for soup I feel, so you just play with quantities and see what tastes good to you. Watch the adding of salt and pepper it’s better to slightly under season than over, if you need more you can add it at the table.

My winter has started.


Extra oranges

Silly me bought a 3kg bag of oranges when there was still half a bag at home. My husband likes to juice his orange every morning so we go through a few.

Those extra oranges of course can be frozen. I like to peel and quarter them before I freeze chunks as I find the skin is a bit soft/weird to take off when defrosted, this is my choice you may be ok with it. Same with lemons, limes etc.

My preference is to gently simmer the whole orange. Sit whole oranges (skin and all) in a pot, cover with water until the orange just floats. Place on the stove on a low to medium heat until reasonably constant small bubbles appear in the water. You may have to turn the heat down it depends on your stove, you don’t want it boiling just simmering. Leave for 10-20 minutes or until skin and orange is tender to the touch. Top up with water if need be. Don’t be in a rush a few mins over won’t destroy it.

Take out of water and let cool for a few minutes then cut in quarters picking out any seeds and white stringy bits from inside. Biltz the quarters skin and all in a food processor or blender. Cool. If doing 3 oranges divide into 3 zip lock bags and freeze.

A single portion is enough to mix in with the milk then into a vanilla cake mix to make an orange cake (you can add a little Cointreau if you like) or mix into the milk with a chocolate cake mix to make a jaffa (choc orange) cake. Ice with vanilla icing with orange zest or chocolate icing with the zest. That little bit of acid in the orange is enough to give the cake a nice light lift. Half an orange portion is enough to make orange pancakes once again mixing in with the milk.

Does this boiling method work with other citrus I don’t know I’ve not tried it, if you do let me know your results.

My nut and seed squares experiment

I always encourage experimentation with my recipes and today I was no different in trying something a little bit different.

The experiment was on my nut and seed squares, not so much as an experiment as a slight switcheroo. Who knew that adding a table spoon of coconut flour instead of desiccated coconut could have such an affect. Well the coconut flour sucked the life out of my 1 egg white so had to add another.

Forming this recipe into biscuits (cookies) to bake instead of a slice/squares is how I mostly bake this , they are a nice and nutty snack.

I think if I was to add coconut flour instead of coconut again I’d have to make as the squares and add that extra egg white.  It’s a little denser with than without. They’re still good, just different.

My lesson learned =  coconut flour really absorbs liquids. I’ve not had a play with  it before.

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