• cooking,  food,  kids,  lifestyle,  Uncategorized

    Cinnamon Rolls

    There is nothing better that hot, sweet and cinnamonny (that’s a word right!?!) buns.

    I have been experimenting with a traditional cinnamon roll recipe and this is my version of Overnight Cinnamon Rolls with Vanilla Glaze.

    The great thing with the second prove overnight, you look like a baking legend when you rock up at the kindy shared lunch or work morning tea with warm buns!!

    IMG_20180224_155503_149

    INGREDIENTS

    DOUGH

    1 1/4 teaspoon dried yeast

    160ml luke warm milk

    3 cups plain flour

    1/4 cup caster sugar

    1 teaspoon salt

    2 free-range eggs

    125g butter (melted)

    1/2 teaspoon of vanilla paste OR 1 teaspoon vanilla essence

    FILLING

    100gm butter (softened)

    1/2 cup soft brown sugar

    2 teaspoons of cinnamon

    1/2 cup of dried fruit or chocolate (optional)

    GLAZE

    1 1/3 cups icing sugar

    2 tablespoons milk

    1/4 teaspoon vanilla paste OR 1/4 teaspoon vanilla essence

    METHOD

    In a bowl mix together the warm milk and yeast. Leave for five minutes. Make sure your milk is not too hot otherwise you will kill the yeast and your dough will be a dud.

    In a large mixing bowl add the flour, sugar and salt. Melt butter and add to the flour mixture.  Lightly whisk the eggs and add the vanilla paste/essence then add to mixing bowl. Lastly add the milk yeast mixture.  Place a dough hook on your stand mixer and knead until a thick combined dough is made (roughly 8 minutes).  Place in a lightly greased bowl and stand covered in a warm place for 60 minutes or until it has doubled in size.

    After it has risen roll out the dough on a lightly floured bench so it’s roughly rectangle shaped and 1cm thick.

    For the filling switch from your dough hook to the whisk on your mixer.  Add the softened butter, brown sugar and cinnamon and beat until light and fluffy.  Spread over the rolled out dough leaving a 0.5cm edge.  Here is where you add any fruit or chocolate. Sprinkle evenly over the filling.

    Starting from the longest edge roll into a large sausage. Cut the roll in half then half again. You should then cut those halves into 3.  Making 12 rolls.

    So there are 2 ways you can go from here. If baking immediately you can grease a baking dish and place the rolls in all comfy and let them proof again for 45 minutes OR you can place the rolls into a greased dish and place in the fridge covered overnight.  Don’t put the refrigerated rolls straight in the oven. Pull them out of the fridge 15 mins before hand to warm up a bit!

    From here both of these need to be cooked in a preheated oven at 180 degrees (160 degrees if your using fan forced) for 20 minutes.  Then loosely cover with foil and bake for another 15-20 minutes until cooked.  Allow to cool for 10-15 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack.

    In a bowl mix all the glaze ingredients. Spoon the glaze over the warm cinnamon rolls.

    IMG_20180224_155532_812 (1)

    Happy Baking.

    Jx

     

     

  • cooking,  food,  kids,  lifestyle,  motherhood,  Uncategorized

    Tray Bake Pasta

    This recipe has evolved from a stand at the stove gig to a throw it all in a pan gig.

    I am all for making good food as easy as possible. I know the last thing I want to do at the end of the day is spend hours at the stove. Bonus ….. even a husband could make this one!!


    TRAY BAKE PASTA

    4-6 good quality sausages of your choice (head to your butcher for the best ones!)

    1.5kg tomatoes OR 1 jar of pasata sauce if you need to sell a kidney for said tomatoes

    1 onion (sliced)

    2 springs rosemary

    1 handful of thyme

    1 pinch of dried chilli flakes (omit or pump it up depending on taste)

    salt & pepper

    2-3 glugs of good olive oil (I use garlic infused for extra flavour)

    Pasta any shape/type but remember shapes are a great carrier for sauces (depending on how many you are feeding. I used 1x 500gm packet to feed my family of 5 with left overs).

    Parmesan

    Fresh basil leaves

    METHOD

    Preheat your oven to 180 degrees.

    Add tomatoes, onions, herbs, chilli, salt & pepper to a large baking dish.

    Take each sausage and pull the insides into small meatballs. Each sausage makes 5-6 meatballs.

    Give it a big glug of olive oil cover with foil and bake for 20-25 mins.

    Uncover and smoosh the tomatoes with a fork (if you have used pasata sauce skip this step).

    Bake for another 10-15 until brown.

    While this is happening cook your pasta in boiling salted water until done. Drain and keep 1/4 cup of the cooking water.

    Add the pasta to the baking tray, add the cooking water and with a wooden spoon chuff up the baked on goodness to make the sauce.

    Serve with fresh basil and grated parmesan.

    Enjoy!!

    J xx

  • essentials,  lifestyle,  Uncategorized

    Get your iVac on with Godfreys

    Now people I could wax lyrical about the joys of hoovering (vacuuming or luxing depending on where you come from) and housework but let’s face it ……. I bloody hate it.

    I am very good at finding essential and must do jobs to get out of it. However the problem is with 3 kids and at this stage no dog (to lick up the crumbs) it doesn’t take long until my house looks like a barnyard.

    IMG_20171210_173757_198

    In the new pad we have carpet in the bedrooms and rimu flooring everywhere else.  For us it’s a novelty to have carpet and it’s wonderful not having 5+ rooms all with their own dust bunnies!

    If you summed up my cleaning style it would be frantic. A quick whip round before visitors arrive.  When Godfreys asked me to try the iVac x10 it seemed to fit perfectly into my cleaning style.  Unplug the battery, whip round the house, empty the dust canister and plug it back it. DONE.

    IMG_20171210_173646_166 (1)

    I love the fact there is no changing from hard floors to carpet.  It flips between both perfectly.  It sucks up everything BUT if you’re like me and have small people you tend to hoover up all sorts.  When you “accidentally” suck up that Lego the iVac x10 stops and lets you get it out before the get into the workings, bejiggering the mechanisms.

    It has some cool little accessories that can get into those couch nooks and crannies as well as nailing the cobwebs that hang out on the ceiling.

    IMG_20171210_173834_013

    Our iVac x10 has a new home in the laundry and at first I thought “ughhhh battery powered, I will have to charge it” but I now have got in the habit of when I have finished using it I just plug it in and it’s good to go for next time.

    I never realised how much hoover cords annoyed my until I didn’t have one. It’s so freeing. No finding a plug, un-doing cords and only going so far because the cord won’t reach. I can flick around the WHOLE house in 10 mins now. Now don’t get me wrong I am still not a fan of hoovering but the iVac x10 sure makes it easier!!

    If the iVac x10 sounds like your thing Godfreys are having their annual Stocktake Sale which ends on Jan 31st. Online and Instore. Get your hoover on people.

    IMG_20171210_173422_471

    The crew at Godfreys have been filled with Christmas cheers and have given me a iVac x10 valued at $299 to giveaway to one of you lovely people.

    Hit the link below to enter.

    http://dgo.nz/LPIJyn3F4579

    Good Luck!!

     

     

     

     

  • beauty,  essentials,  fashion,  lifestyle,  summer,  Uncategorized

    Getting Fancy and Festive

    Heading into December it’s Christmas party central.  Also we want to look good for Santa when he comes sliding down the ol’ chimney!

    The awesome team at Shine On have let me trawl their virtual shelves to find some looks to fit every festive fashion need.

    PARTY TIME

    OTIS_SPLIT_JUMPUSIT
    https://shineon.co.nz/collections/categories-jumpsuits/products/sass-otis-split-front-jumpsuit-black

    This jumpsuit is AMAZING! Jumpsuits quite intimidating if you’re not 5’10 and the size of a twig.  But the slits add flow so you’re less likely to get ol’ camel toe (a notorious jumpsuit issue)!!

    nolan_wrap
    https://shineon.co.nz/collections/categories-dresses/products/sass-nolan-wrap-dress

    Every gal need a pretty dress. This is it. Feminine and just down right pretty.

    thisdressrach1
    https://shineon.co.nz/collections/categories-dresses/products/elm-silhouette-shift-dress-green-julypreorder

    COLOUR! Want a dress that is a talking point?  This is it!

    23805685_10156081627774015_1298444411_n
    https://shineon.co.nz/collections/categories-footwear/products/mollini-lolinas-black-stretch-satin

    Holy Moses! These are come hither I am one sexy beast shoes!!

    BANGING BOHO

    SheWhoSeeks-561_1024x1024_ba9420b7-3696-4e33-a490-36cfc1747b61
    https://shineon.co.nz/collections/categories-dresses/products/madison-square-medusa-embroidered-dress-cobalt

    I love this dress. Anything with tassels in my book is fun!

    C0028500470016_05
    https://shineon.co.nz/collections/categories-footwear/products/anacapri-tresse-sandal-cherry

    You can’t beat a good summer sandal.  Dress up or dress down. Skirt, dress or shorts. Anything goes.

    fate_rafinnne_jumpsuit
    https://shineon.co.nz/collections/whats-new/products/fate-rafinne-jumpsuit

    3 words. I need this!! The colour is stunning.

    23772433_10155631762095225_1909163832_n
    https://shineon.co.nz/collections/whats-new/products/miss-lilly-kimocape-tribal-purple

    Kimonos are the new knickers.Every girl needs them! Wear them over a dress, jeans or shorts. They will be your best friend this summer!!

    CASUAL AS

    23574468_10155857027197964_861810445_n
    https://shineon.co.nz/collections/brands-silent-theory/products/silent-theory-twisted-tee-dress-grey-fleck

    I have this dress in black and stripes and I get so many comments! Easy to wear, perfect for travelling very forgiving in the pooch department (my problem area!)

    camo_shorts_2-800x1320
    https://shineon.co.nz/collections/categories-shorts/products/dricoper-drop-crotch-camo-shorts

    Denim shorts. I staple every wardrobe must have. Perfect with that kimono!

     

     

    cheetah1
    https://shineon.co.nz/collections/categories-footwear/products/leather-sandal-cheetah-amazing

    I live in these Ancapari slides. So comfortable even being so flat. Perfect for when jandals are a bit too casual.

    So ladies and gents get your glad rags on and have fun this holiday season!!

    J x

     

  • essentials,  ethical shopping,  fashion,  lifestyle,  Uncategorized

    Drop What??

    We all need to wear pants, unless your name is Kimmy Kardashian BUT even Kim like a pant at times.

    Now don’t get me wrong I still love a good jean but this winter I have been wearing the shit out of a good drop crotch pant.

    You either love or hate the drop. I bloody love them. My mother bloody hates them and continues to comment on the fact. Bearing in mind I have just had my 31st birthday it’s pretty obvious your mother always has an opinion on EVERYTHING!!

    Easy to wear. Dress up or dress down. Day to Night. They really are easy to wear AND frigging comfortable.

    Stripes, denim and monochrome all feature in this mamas wardrobe.

    Here are my favs.

    STRIPES

    Madame Midi Stripe $109 from Madame Goblin. These are up there with my favourite ever purchases. I love them almost as much as my children. Sometimes more. They also do small sizes for matchy matching.

    ELM Lennox $89.95 from Shineon. More a relaxed fix these are perfect for a relaxing Sunday.

    DENIM

    Luxe Fleur Drop Crotch Jeans AU$99.99 from Decjuba. An extreme drop in the crotch area. Not for the faint hearted. Definitely size down.

    MONOCHROME

    mumMe Duffle Pant $69.95 from Bam + Boo. No seams and no fading from these bad boys. Bam + Boo are also bringing out also new style with pockets!!

    FATE Halston Pant $139.90 from Shineon. Slightly shorter in the leg these pants also the most beautiful fabric. Lil bit shiny and silky. Perfect for the evening with heels.

    Luxe Drop Crotch Pant AU$59.95 from Decjuba. You can’t go past a staple. I think I need the grey!!

    Happy shopping!!

    Jx

  • Dot Dash Family
    education,  essentials,  kids,  learning,  lifestyle,  motherhood,  parenting,  Uncategorized

    Winners and Losers

    In life and adulthood there are winners and losers. Now I’m not talking about winning a race or a game of monopoly. Life is full of outcomes good and bad.

    That job you really want. Sometimes you are successful and sometimes you are not. The hot guy that you have been seeing turns out to be a bit of a douchebag, you learn and move on. As Grandma would say plenty more fish in the sea!

    A paper you have slaved over for weeks sometimes you pass and sometimes you have read the brief completely wrong and your lecturer wants you to re-write. Sitting your driving test and speeding and you get back to the depot only to be told “I am sorry I cannot pass you”. Life it FULL of ups and downs.

    Why am I writing this?

    Tonight I saw Maria from Happy Mum Happy Child shared a moment from her life on Facebook and it got me thinking …. We as parents try not to let our children fail or be disappointed but are we doing them a disservice in doing so?

    Our choices and actions teach us boundaries. Even when they are small, children push those boundaries to learn how far they can go. It’s nature. Failure and disappointment is a natural part of life and in allowing our children not to experience this natural yet shitty part of life are we not teaching them a valuable life lesson.

    Imagine getting to 18 and never experiencing disappointment or failure? You would not have the coping mechanisms and strategies on board to realise THIS IS NORMAL. You would not know what was happening and you would feel like your world was ending.

    Now I am no expert but looking from the outside in I am seeing a generation of kids who have never experienced disappointment or failure. Never lost a game, race or been told no. There are always “winners” and “losers” in this world. Maybe the words are not the nicest but they are reality.

    Are we setting our kids up to “fail” by not teaching them the crucial life lesson?

    It saddens me when I hear of schools not allowing “winners” in a race, because the other children will feel disappointment. Does this also not allow the winning child to feel a sense of pride and achievement? It also allows us to be apart of society that cuts achievers down with extreme hatred ….. Tall Poppy Syndrome anyone?

    Here in NZ our teen suicide rate is high, too high.

    As a mother with a child heading into this turbulent time I hope that I have given him the foundations of life lessons to get him through. I hope I have instilled in him that there is more to life than what can seem like the end of the world.

    I would love to hear others thoughts.

    Like I said this is only my opinion. I am not a parenting expert or child psychologist. Just a mum speaking as I find.

  • beauty,  ethical shopping,  fashion,  lifestyle,  Uncategorized

    WIN WIN WIN with Jord Watches

    There is nothing better than a good watch. If your like me I am not a huge watch wearer (because of my job) BUT if I wear one it has to look good!!

    Jord Watches are a little bit different because they are made from wood. Yes, you heard me … wood.

    There are SO many to choose from different woods, different sizes and coloured faces. I also love the fact they are unisex.

    Beautifully presented in a stunning wooden box with little drawers full of waxes, wipes and goodies These watches sure make an impressive gift.

    Jord Watches have given me a $100 voucher to give away to one lucky Dot Dash follower. All you need to do is click the link and follow the prompts.

    https://www.woodwatches.com/g/dotdash

    I am wearing the Frankie in Sandalwood and Emerald.

  • cooking,  essentials,  food,  lifestyle

    Cookbook Classic – HOME by Unna Burch 

    I have a confession to make.

    I have a secret.

    Well to be honest it’s not so secret!

    I am a cookbook hoarder. If you have every watched Nigella Lawson you would have seen her cookbook library. It is probably the most epic thing I have ever seen in my life. A whole room dedicated to her love of cookbooks.

    In all honesty I just love all books but cookbooks are for me next level. Flicking through the pages of a cookbook take you on a journey. Regardless if you ever actually cook from it.

    The very talented Unna Burch from The Forest Cantina has recently self published her 2nd cookbook called Home and it really is like visiting her home.

    Unna self published via Kickstarter. As a backer I was lucky enough to be part of her Auckland styling/photography workshop she did last year. Unna has an amazing presence about her. It’s really hard to describe how rad she is. But she is pretty dang amazing.  She take simple styling to the next level and watching her work was mindblowing. From the placement of a leaf or seed to added props and textures it really was like watching a master at work.

    Bonnie Beattie art director and lifestyle photography for Home visually told the story an a way that captured a moment in time.

    Home is a collection of recipes which Unna says is her home cooking. Not only is Home a cookbook it looks at lifestyle. From good food to growing your own produce, to raising chickens for the perfect coloured egg (check out The Forest Cantina on Instagram to see what I mean) and giving you an insight into urban bee-keeping. After reading it I was ready to buy hives, rent an allotment and buy some chooks. Then I realised I would be really shit at all of those things so i’ll just stick to the cooking!!

    Stand out recipes from the book for us have been the Diner Style Pancakes – easy to make (as I could NEVER make the Edmonds cookbook ones).  Once you try these you will never lower yourself to buy those shaker pancakes again.

    Meatloaf with a BBQ glaze is now a firm fixture on our dinner menu.  What I love most is the fact not only is it freaking delicious, it does us two dinners so it saves me time!! We have it with spuds and veggies on night one and the leftovers we have meatloaf burgers with wedges. It’s even good cold and Unna gives a great recipe for Meatloaf sammies.

    We have also tried the super fast egg foo young. This is genius and perfect when you have those moments of “I can’t be bothered cooking” and it actually tastes better than takeaways!

    I am slowly working my way through the book and I can’t wait to spend a weekend in the kitchen making Nana Kui’s beetroot chutney, jalapeno – cranberry jelly and giving Unna’s ramen bone broth a crack.

    Home is definitely a book you will cook from as well as escape in the beautiful images that Unna and Bonnie have captured. If you want to be inspired to cook I say go with Home.

  • essentials,  fashion,  lifestyle,  Uncategorized

    DOT DASH + SABEN GIVEAWAY

    I love Saben.

    Silly as it may sound my Tilly has changed my life.

    IMG_3780
    Saben Tilly in Ink

    What is even funnier, is that when I have been prattling on about how much I love her people have got one and found the same sort of life changing love.

    My love grew when Camden came into my life.

    IMG_20170627_192438_187

    Now Tilly gets to rides shotgun in Camden for the big jobs like our latest trip to Melbourne.

    IMG_20170601_140609_037

    It is a win win situation.

    Talking of winning ………

    Saben have VERY kindly given me a Camden to giveaway to one lucky Dot Dash follower.

    IMG_20170527_124816_474 (1)

    All you need to do is click the link below and your in to WIN!

    http://dgo.nz/bzZjsLuG4422

    Don’t forget to tag your friends on our Facebook page so you can share the love!!

    BIG, HUGE and McMASSIVE thank you to the Saben team for making this possible.

  • cooking,  fashion,  food,  holiday,  lifestyle,  Melbourne,  travel,  Uncategorized

    Oh Melbourne ….. PART ONE

    I promised MANY people I would blog about our trip to Melbourne. But I got in a post holiday funk so looking and reminiscing about our AMAZING time just made me sad that I won’t be doing it again any time soon. I quickly got over myself and here it is. Our Melbourne adventure sans kids.

    Oh and I will have to do it in parts because I started writing it and realised I had a BUTTLOAD to talk about so here is PART ONE. 

    WARNING – Lots of food. Some of the images are not my own. I was too busy stuffing my face to get me phone out and lighting was shite, so it would not have done the food justice!!

    DAY ONE – If you need a place to stay at Auckland Airport the night before you fly I cannot recommend the ibis Budget at Auckland Airport enough. Like it’s not 5 star but at $89 a night AND you can leave your car there for up to 7 days for about $60 you can’t really complain.

    I hadn’t been to Melbourne before so I didn’t really know what to expect. But my 1st impression flying into it was “man it’s really FLAT!”

    We continued our love for the Ibis hotels staying at the ibis Budget on Little Bourke St. We were super central BUT when you look at the map of the Melbourne CBD it’s all in blocks and everything looks really close. In reality the streets are QUITE long!! For example we were staying at 600 Little Bourke St and heading to GingerBoy for dinner it was a good 15-20 min walk even though it was on a little laneway just off Little Bourke St!!

    The awesome thing about Melbourne is the different cultural aspects of it all. Staying on Little Bourke St you are heading into Chinatown. It really is epic and if you love to people watch you will LOVE Melbourne.  Chinatown is full of amazing restaurants each paying homage to their specialty be it dumplings, seafood or noodles. You could literally spend a week eating your way through 500m of Chinatown.

    gingerboy-482x298
    Image – Google

    GingerBoy is hailed as Melbourne’s 1st Hawker style fusion restaurant and to be honest it is pretty dang good. It is set up where you order a few dishes to share. We were feeling hungry so got the banquet menu (plus a few cocktails!!). Choosing the banquet menu you are given the fav/most popular dishes on the menu. This is a great way to eat because you get to try things you wouldn’t normally choose. It also gives you a great idea of what a restaurant is about.

    The stand out for me was the salt and pepper chicken spare ribs (pretty sure they were chicken wings!) in a tamarind hot sauce. The were almost a smidge on the hot side for me (lil bit of a spice puss) but they were so good I didn’t care that the mouth was on fire!! GingerBoy was also the 1st place I got to try Wagu beef. So I’ve heard about this famed “Wagu”. It’s the mac daddy of beef.  For me I’m not a huge steak/beef fan and never order steak when I go out for dinner so it would never enter my head to get it. But holy sweet baby Jesus. It is THE BEST beef I have ever eaten. I can’t even describe why. It was like your eye fillet on steroids and then some. So my challenge to you my friend is if you get the chance to try Wagu …… DO IT!!

    banquet
    Image – TripAdvisor.

    DAY TWO – This was a CRAZY busy day. In hindsight I wouldn’t have done this all in one day because I don’t think we got to mooch and really see everything we could have.

    We hit the pavement early for coffee and bomboloni (Italian filled donuts) at Coffea an awesome little place on the doorstep of Queen Victoria Markets. One thing about Melbourne is that coffee is GOOD and service is quick. No matter how busy a cafe is your coffee will take less than 5 mins to make an appearance and we were never disappointed. I am ruined for life and become a complete coffee snob!!

    Queen Victoria Market you bloody beauty. A food nirvana. It’s a place where you literally don’t know where to start. Because I am a bit of a geek we booked a Foodie Tour of the Queen Vic. A tour which has tastings and gives you a bit of history about the place. I think I turned to Luke at one stage and was fizzing with foodie excitement. There were fat juicy oysters, beautiful kangaroo steaks and this frigging amazing blue cheese that had been skewered with chocolate liquer – mind blowing. There were every kind of olive you could think of, handcrafted chocolates and Luke got pretty excited about the wee craft beer and cider shop (should have gone back to that bit!)

     So that was just the meat, fish and dairy hall! You head outside and there is produce for DAYS. Organic, local and veges I had never even heard of, oh and the feijoas for $1 each and they were TINY!  

    My second ahhhhh moment came when I discovered ReWine. Clearskin wines in ONE litre bottles that you can REFILL. Red, white and the best Prosecco I have ever had. We also picked up some of their famous mulled wine syrup for those winter nights. 

     We nailed some donuts from the famous donut van (we were told this is a Melbourne insitution and the line is round the block on the weekends), then headed for another coffee to shake off the few wines I had! Queen Vic has another part of the market which we didn’t get to and that was the merchandise side of things. Trinkets and tresures awaited but because we had a lunch booking we had to rush off. Next trip I’m setting aside a WHOLE day to explore this amazing place. 

    Now Dinner by Heston was one thing we had planned for ages. Dinner by Heston is the antipodean cousin of Dinner by Heston, London. It was proably the most amazing culinary experience I have ever had. The only shit thing was the fact I decided to be a lady and I wore my glam heels. It was a 15-20 min walk to the river and by the time we got there I was blistered and in agony. That said I sucked it up with Luke saying “I told you so!!” – asshole!

    My photo’s I took didn’t do the meal justice. If you want a better idea definetly google it!! We got the 6 course tasting lunch and I am so glad we did. Stand outs for me was the “meat fruit” – chicken liver parfait and the hay smoked ocean trout oh and weird but great was the roasted cucumber. Luke was all over the “rice and flesh” – saffron risotto and curried kangaroo tail and tipsy cake with spit roasted pineapple the 1st (yes there were 2!) dessert.  

    Dinner by Heston was amazing and we both realised that we didn’t talk much through out the lunch because we were so busy watching the staff. It was a well oiled machine with each person having a role in the big picture. We sat opposite the kitchen with the large glass windows which made perfect people viewing. So my recommendation is that is you get the chance go. Have an open mind. be amazed and maybe take your credit card!! 

    We ended up finishing our Friday in the best way possible with family, cutting shapes in a little place called The Black Rabbit and drinking $10 espresso martinis. Followed by a kebab while walking home. I felt 20 again. However it I did not feel 20 the next morning!!