Wednesday, 21 November 2012


There’s no risk-free way to love. The possibility of being devastated is always there, but the possibility of joy only exists when you put your battered heart right on the table by trusting that you’re lovable.
—Martha Beck

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

French Macarons



  1. Pulse confectioners' sugar and almond flour in a food processor until combined. Sift mixture 2 times.
  2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Whisk whites with a mixer on medium speed until foamy. Add cream of tartar, and whisk until soft peaks form. Reduce speed to low, then add superfine sugar. Increase speed to high, and whisk until stiff peaks form, about 8 minutes. Sift flour mixture over whites, and fold until mixture is smooth and shiny.
  3. Transfer batter to a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain round tip, and pipe 3/4-inch rounds 1 inch apart on parchment-lined baking sheets, dragging pastry tip to the side of rounds rather than forming peaks. Tap bottom of each sheet on work surface to release trapped air. Let stand at room temperature for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Bake 1 sheet at a time, rotating halfway through, until macarons are crisp and firm, about 10 minutes. After each batch, increase oven temperature to 375 degrees, heat for 5 minutes, then reduce to 325 degrees.
  4. Let macarons cool on sheets for 2 to 3 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack. (If macarons stick, spray water underneath parchment on hot sheet. The steam will help release macarons.)
  5. Sandwich 2 same-size macarons with 1 teaspoon filling. Serve immediately, or stack between layers of parchment, wrap in plastic, and freeze for up to 3 months.

Five-Minute Carrot Cake

  • 1/4 cup spelt flour (or white flour, or Arrowhead Mills gf)
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp pumpkin pie spice (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/2 “egg” of choice (I used 1/2 tsp ener-g, but 2 tsp flaxmeal would also work. If you must, you can omit completely. It just won’t rise as well.)
  • 1.5 tablespoons xylitol or brown sugar (coconut or white sugar will also work)
  • 1 packet NuNaturals stevia (or 1 more tablespoon sugar or xylitol)
  • 1/3 cup canned carrots, drained (or steamed carrots, peeled) (for a variation, sub with 1/4c pureed pumpkin) (60g)
  • 1 tablespoon milk of choice
  • 1 tablespoon oil or more milk of choice
  • 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract

  • In a small bowl, mix dry ingredients (not carrots). If you have a blender (or Magic Bullet), mix all wet ingredients and blend. (Option for those without a blender: simply fork-mash the carrots very well before combining with the other wet ingredients.) Then mix dry into wet and stir. Pour into greased ramekins, a little dish, or a mug. (I used two 1/2-cup ramekins.) If using the microwave, cook for 1 minute 20 seconds (or more or less, depending on the strength of your microwave). Or you can cook this in the oven at 350F for around 15 minutes. Let cool before trying to pop out. Serves 1-2.

    Blueberry Pie Pancakes

    (Serves 1)
    • 1/2 cup blueberries
    • 1/3 cup flour (ww pastry, white, spelt, or even Bob’s gluten-free)
    • 2 tbsp rolled oats
    • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
    • 2/3 tsp baking powder
    • 1/8 tsp salt
    • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
    • 1 tbsp sugar or 1 packet stevia (omit if you don’t want sweet pancakes)
    • 1/3 cup milk of choice
    • Unless you like the taste of fat-free pancakes, add 1 tbsp oil and reduce milk by that amount.
    Combine dry ingredients in a bowl, then add wet. Mix, but don’t overmix. Cook on an oiled (or sprayed) pan, on low-medium, flipping each pancake once.

    By: Katie

    Breakfast Pizza

    Serves 2 …unless you want to eat the whole pizza so you can say “I can’t believe I ate the whole thing” like in the commercial!
    • 1/2 cup whole-wheat pastry flour (70g)
    • 1 tsp baking powder
    • 2 stevia packets (1/16 tsp uncut) or 2 tablespoons sugar (Can easily be omitted if you’re planning to frost the pizza with something very sweet.)
    • very scant 1/2 cup (100 g) water, juice, or milk of choice
    • 2 tbsp (35g) applesauce or coconut oil (or pumpkin, veg oil, mashed banana, or even baby food!)
    • 1/8 tsp salt
    • spices or extracts if you wish (I like adding a little cinnamon)
    • A few handfuls ______ Fill in the blank! Raspberries? Chocolate chips? Chopped apples, walnuts, and raisins? Anything goes!! It’s your pizzert!
    Mix everything together and pour into a greased pan. (I spray mine with coconut oil spray, then I wipe it around to make sure it’s evenly coated. Make sure to grease enough, or it’ll stick to the pan!) Cook in an UNpreheated oven at 420 degrees F for 10 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Then you get to play with toppings

    Favorite Morning Bite (Breakfast Pizza by Chocolate Covered Katie):

    Valastro's Red Velvet Cake


    • 2 1/4 cups sifted cake flour (not self-rising)
    • 1/4 cup Dutch-process cocoa powder
    • 1/2 tsp. salt
    • 8 Tbsp. (1 stick) unsalted butter , at room temperature
    • 1 1/2 cups sugar
    • 2 large eggs , at room temperature
    • 2 Tbsp. liquid red food coloring
    • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
    • 1 cup buttermilk , at room temperature
    • 2 tsp. distilled white vinegar
    • 1 tsp. baking soda
    • 2 packages (8 ounces apiece) cream cheese , at room temperature
    • 8 Tbsp. (1 stick) unsalted butter , at room temperature
    • 2 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar , sifted
    • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
    • Pinch of salt


    To make cake: Preheat oven to 350°. Grease two 9" x 2" round cake pans. Line bottoms with parchment paper; grease.

    Sift flour, cocoa, and salt into a bowl.

    In stand mixer with paddle attachment, beat butter at low speed until creamy. Add sugar; blend on medium speed, scraping bowl occasionally, until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add eggs 1 at a time, mixing well after each. Scrape bowl; add food coloring and vanilla. On low speed, beat in flour mixture in thirds, alternating with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. In small bowl, stir together vinegar and baking soda. Stir into batter. Divide batter between prepared pans; spread evenly. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool in pans 10 minutes. Run a knife around edges and turn layers out onto racks. Remove paper and flip cakes; cool completely. Freeze for 30 minutes.

    To make frosting: In stand mixer with paddle attachment, beat cream cheese and butter at medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Add sugar, vanilla, and salt. Blend on low speed for 30 seconds; beat on medium-high until fluffy.

    To assemble: Cut layers in half horizontally with a serrated knife. Place 1 layer, cut side up, on a serving plate; spread with 1/2 cup frosting. Repeat twice. Add last layer, top side up. Ice cake thinly with 3/4 cup frosting to crumb-coat. Refrigerate 20 minutes; finish frosting.

    (From: THIS)


    Interview Tips from Lauren Conrad

    Before The Interview
    1. Research the company.
    2. Update your resume. (If possible try to keep it to one page in length.)
    3. Bring: A fresh notepad, a pen and two copies of your resume.
    4. Dress appropriately and avoid any oversized or layered jewelry.
    5. Wear natural makeup and keep your hair simple and out of your face. A few of my favorite interview hairstyles include ballerina buns, low ponytails, and half-up styles.
    6. On the way to your interview, listen to your favorite pump up song to boost your energy and confidence. (It sounds silly, but it always works!)
    7. Turn off your phone and spit out the gum.
    8. Arrive on time (and not too early, 10 minutes is usually best).
    9. Be prepared to answer the following questions:
      "Tell me about yourself.
      "How has your experience prepared you for this job?
      "What is your greatest weakness? (Tip: Whatever your weakness is, always present it as something that you are "working on." For example, "I'm working on talking less when I am nervous.")
      "Why do you want this job?
    10. Prepare a few questions of your own, such as the following:
      "Why is this position open?
      "Is there an opportunity for growth with this position? If so, where does it lead?
      "What was your career path to this job?

    During the Interview
    1. Be nice to everyone in and around the building. You never know who works at the company or who will be interviewing you.
    2. Give them a solid, confident handshake.
    3. Smile. You want to be approachable and it will ease your nerves.
    4. Be polite and energetic. No one wants to interview a slug.
    5. Maintain good posture.
    6. Don't talk too much–you don't want to be a chatterbox, but definitely don't provide them with one word answers either. Also, do NOT interrupt the person who is interviewing you.
    7. Remember to ask your questions at the end of the interview.
    8. Do NOT ask about money during the first interview.
    9. At the end of the interview, ask when a decision is going to be made and when it is appropriate for you to follow up.
    10. On your way out, be sure to graciously thank them for taking the time to meet with you.

    After the Interview
    1. The second you walk out of the interview write a hand-written thank you note and pop it in the mail that same day. Yes, as in snail mail. It may seem old-fashioned, but this is an often-overlooked gesture that is greatly appreciated and highly noted by potential employers.
    2. Follow up if you haven't heard back by the date specified during the interview. Do not follow up before that date.
    3. Do NOT (!!!) tweet, Facebook post, or blog about your interview. We all know that the first thing a prospective employer does after an interview is Google the interviewee.

    Wednesday, 3 October 2012

    Zara Online

    I have to admit that Zara and Mango online shops are amongst my favourate shops to view trends and to check how prices in South Africa are inflated compared to the UK or USA and to shop. However, I try to curb my shopping habit and to be rather budget conscious about my spending especially since my budget is sometimes limited. Regardless, my love for Zara  is at its peak. Here is my online pick.

    Wednesday, 12 September 2012


    I been going to gym for a few weeks now, I must say that it been tough. Gym at 5:30am until 6:30 am just for a cardio and weight session or plain cardio which includes spinning. My body is not showing any weigh loss yet but then again I have not started eating healthy yet. Next week, I will try and be better and work out more, for now I will cut out coke and chips.

    About a dress or two

    (Images from Pinterest)