Hello, hello, hello!
Wow! It feels like it’s been a lifetime since I was last able to sit down and write a blog post! Although I know it hasn’t actually been all that long, a lot has happened in the time I’ve been out and about in the real world!
First of all, I spent last weekend working on a massive sewing project with a friend. I’d been looking forward to this project for almost a month, as I’d booked her in for that weekend well in advance. We got into her car, zoomed off to Spotlight, agonised over fabrics, consulted patterns, selected zips and ribbon, and then headed back to her place to begin work. Although I don’t plan on going to the Jane Austen festival, I’ve been interested in making regency-esque clothing for quite a while now. It looked like something that would be fun and unique to make. And it was! Although in hindsight stretching the project over two weekends might have been better, I’m quite happy it’s complete. There were still a few issues that would have required more time and supplies to fix, but the dress is perfectly doable for the time being. And now I know what to do for next time to make it even better!
I’ve still got another project to finish as well, a skirt with ruffles, which a potential new friend has agreed to help with. I’m excited to get to know her, as I’ve heard she’s very lovely. And mum was thinking of helping me make a drawstring back to match my regency dress with the leftover fabric when she comes down to visit in June! Not to mention the friend who helped me with the dress has also offered to teach me how to sew circle skirts, so I can get a whole lot of quirky fabrics to make into skirts for dance class! And I’m told circle skirts are a much simpler undertaking! So I’m looking forward to doing all that. I’m still a complete novice, and honestly I think it may take me quite a while to get my head around a lot of the things involved with sewing. But it’s a lot of fun, and it gives me something else to do outside of the computer!
I have also been busy, beavering away at making my friend’s allergy friendly cake for her wedding. I have successfully made one base I am happy with, and popped that in the freezer. But because I won’t have time on the day to make more should something go wrong, I’ll also be preparing a few spares. One so I can test how well it defrosts, and one in-case something happens to the base cake. Phew!
I have learned a lot from making these cakes for my friend, and my skills have certainly improved radically as a result. After all, prior to making that first cake for her mother’s birthday I would never have thought I could make a big layer cake and decorate it to impress. But I have also learned that I’m not all that suited for making big cakes for events. The pressure that comes with it isn’t really well suited to my style of baking. It’s also not exactly a budget friendly enterprise. So although I’m extremely honoured to be called upon, I may have to only agree to do big baking projects when I know I won’t be so busy with other events!
One other thing I’ve learned is that freezer friendly food is amazing. I work full time, and I run a house by myself. And I’ve found that it does take a lot of time and effort to make sure I get to eat different, healthy meals for work lunches. I don’t often eat a big dinner, and I’m more often than not happy to eat soup. But work lunches are very important. I get starving by lunch time and I need a big meal with meat and vegetables to see me through. Having things I can cook and freeze and eat later is amazing. I’ve also been taking tips from various freezer friendly posts from other bloggers about how to use ziplocks and how to flatten foods for increased storage space, and what things freeze best, and more.
This zucchini slice is the first in a series of freezer friendly meals I hope to try, and it was a huge success. It was absolutely delicious, both warm and cold, and when cut up into snack sized portions made for excellent lunch box additions. And better yet you can use whatever vegetables are in your fridge or freezer. So if you don’t have any of the veggies below, you can use whatever you do have!
Adapted from Coles magazine’s
Freezable Zucchini Slice
Makes: Up to 12 snack-sized single portions, Prep: 30 mins, Cook: 40-50 mins
- 1 x 175g packet of rindless shortcut bacon, diced
- 1 brown onion, diced
- 2 zucchini, coarsely grated
- 1 cup pumpkin, coarsely grated
- 1 tin of corn kernels (small or large, depending on how much corn you want)
- 1 cup carrot, coarsely grated
- 1 cup/120g grated cheese of choice (I used the liddels lactose free grated cheese).
- 1 cup/150g gluten-free self-raising flour
- 1/2 cup parsley, chopped
- 4 x eggs, lightly whisked
- 1/4 cup/60ml milk (I used lactose free milk)
- 2 tbsp/40ml olive oil, plus extra for cooking
- Seasoning such as salt and pepper, to taste
- Pre-heat the oven to 180C, and grease and line a 20cm x 30cm lamington pan and set aside.
- Fry the onion and the bacon in a pan until the onion is soft and the bacon is starting to crisp a little, then set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine all the other ingredients and season the mix.
- Add the bacon and onion and mix through.
- Spoon the mixture into the pan and smooth the top.
- Pop in the oven for 40-50 minutes, or until firm to the touch and cooked through.
- Set aside to cool for 5 mins, then tip out into a wire rack to cool completely. or serve warm.
- To freeze, cut into slices and wrap each piece individually in plastic wrap, or pop them into individual ziplock bags, and freeze for up to 3 months.
NOTE: Instead of carrot and corn, you can add 2 cups of mixed frozen vegetables, just thawed. Or whatever veggies you happen to have on hand.