Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Best Scones Ever

I love watching The Living Room (Channel Ten) on Friday evenings because they are funny. I simply adore Miguel with his Spanish charms, and he never fails to make me chuckle.

A few weeks ago, his segment was of him participating in a scone making challenge with a bunch of ladies. It was interesting when he mentioned that his secret ingredient was lemonade!

Who would have known ...

The recipe is so simple, and here's one from Taste's website.
3 cups of self raising flour
A pinch of salt
1 cup of cream
1 cup of lemonade*

*Alternatively, use 1 cup of sparkling water and 1 tsp of icing sugar.

Directions - Preheat oven at 220'C. Sift flour and salt into a large bowl. Make a well in the centre and pour cream and lemonade into it. Mix with a knife until the mixture comes away from the bowl. Pour out onto surface coated with flour and knead for about 5 minutes. Roll into a rectangle of about 1 inch thickness. Cut into 2 inch squares and arrange closely together (with a teensy bit of gap in between) on tray lined with greased baking paper. 

Recipe says bake at 220'C for 10-12 minutes but I preheated the oven at that temperature and baked at 200'C for 25-30 minutes. Best bake at 22 minutes and check, before baking for another 5-8 minutes. Or simply, bake until golden brown.

OK, they don't particularly look good here.

I baked them for 20 minutes at 200'C the first time, and realised that they weren't well cooked inside. So back into the oven they went, for another 10 minutes.

Much better.

These scones are light and you can smell the hint of cream in the air while they're baking in the oven.

A shame we didn't have clotted cream and strawberry jam with a bone china tea cups to fit the picture, so we made do with raspberry jam and cream and mugs of coffee.

Still fab. 
They tasted soooooo much better than my 1st attempt, which were dense.

This weekend's project: a vegan vanilla cake.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Birthday 2014

Everyone knows I share the same birthday as David Beckham. What I didn't realise was that The Rock (Dwayne Johnson) also shared the same birthday!

It was a quiet affair, really. I did check my mailbox, hoping someone would send me a birthday card, but nope, no such luck. :(

I decided to make my own birthday cake, a mille crepe, which I am not going to attempt again until someone needs fattening up! The pastry cream was too die for but a bit runny, and my crepes were too thick.


We only managed to finish half of it (I ate the most of it), before chucking it out after 3 days. This is what happens when you're not friends with your neighbours - too much food wastage!

Dinner was a vege lasagna I made, just because I was craving some lasagna. :)

On Sunday (4th May), we attended the Lady of The Trail at You Yangs for an easy run. The hubs and I did our own run first before heading to Big Rock for the event.

Our run involved scrambling off the tracks into some wilderness just to see if the view was much better up there.

I am posing like how my MIL poses in photos!!!

The ladies ran while the men minded the children and barbeque. It was an easy run, covering about 14km in 2 hours. The ladies are actually way faster than I am, but the whole group stuck together, leaving no one behind. 

Sort of.

I will never believe them again when they tell me that they are slow runners - I would fall under their beginner category if that's how they defined slow!!

I tripped while attempting to take the lead somewhere midway through the run, and tripped not long after that. A few bloody cuts on my left hand but thankfully nothing serious.

So, I am not going to hijack the lead ever again - once bitten, twice shy! I shall remain where I belong, right at the back of the pack. ;)

Thursday, May 1, 2014

May Day!

Holy cow, it's the month of May!

How time flies.
I found some chocolate eggs at the passenger's door in the car that Easter weekend.
The hubs put them there to 'surprise' me!

April flew by in a flurry. I'm not sure what happened, really. I must have spent too much time recovering from the Buffalo Stampede Sky Marathon!

With nothing much happening, we volunteered at TrailsPlus' Brimbank Urban Trail Run last weekend. The race director must have been worried to have us as his newbie vollies (I am picking up some Aussie slangs here!) and good gawd, I'm sure he received a couple of complaints about this bimbotic girl who fumbled BIG TIME!

The marathon runners about to head off at 8.30am.

I was expecting to be briefed before we headed off to our station but we found our instructions in the box. Setting up our aid station was a bit stressful as the wind was blowing the paper cups and containers away, but we eventually managed to shield the wind with the water containers.

I am too embarrassed to share my fumbles here, but I do apologise to any of the runners who were probably annoyed with me that day - I didn't know anything! I was so concerned with the table setting that I failed to register the details of the run itself. My bad.

Most of the runners were really nice, and it was amazing that some of them went out to say more than a few words.

You know how most of us will just mutter a "Thanks!" and head off back into our run? Some of them actually said to us, "Thank you so much for being here today!"

Awww ...

Some spent some time chatting with us and munching the food available. I had brought my own supply of chocolate (to share) and it was surprisingly a hit!

I realised, upon hindsight, that the sign should have been placed at the edge of the table,
and not on top. D'oh!
Our aid station was a central, where the half marathoners would make a u-turn and head back the finish. The ultra and marathoners would go past us and head off to another aid station before turning back and come by us again, before heading to the finish line.

A few runners asked us for some Coke, and I had to apologise that we didn't have any. Some of them stared at us in disbelief, suspicious, as if maybe we had some stashed away but not letting them have any.

I found out later that every aid station had Coke except ours!
Whaaaaat ...

Anyway, running aside, the weather is getting rather chilly these days. It doesn't help that the building we're staying is old and most likely not very well insulated. It's colder indoors than outside!

I'm not supposed to complain about the cold (since the crazy heatwave in January showed me just how terribly hot it can get), but it's really miserable! 

I don't like going into the bathroom or washing my hands, or even getting out of bed to get changed, or even hopping into bed (unless the electric blanket warms it up just a little), and especially feeling hungry all the time!

The only time I forget about the cold is when I'm having hot soup noodles for dinner (it's happening quite regularly these days) or am bundled up and running along the trails.

Crap, am I talking about running again?

Well, I have a fancy dress running event coming up in a few weeks and the theme is Superheroes or Supervillains. I have been looking for something easy to assemble and to run in, but it still looks like I've got to do some shopping and sewing!