Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Muesli bars ....

I have three boys, they eat a lot! I try and make most of there snack food from scratch. Apart from the fact that its often cheaper, I love knowing what goes in to what they are eating and also having the choice of substituting ingredients for healthier ones.
the last couple of years I've been trying to perfect the perfect muesli bar. I have tried (no word of a lie) at least 20 different recipe's! I really wanted the bars not to be full of empty carbs and sugar, but I also needed the boys to like them and most importantly eat them! Anyhow i am happy to say that i think i have finally nailed it yeah!! I have a muesli bar that is filling, nutritious, semi healthy and appealing to the chillins! Since I've done all the testing, made all the mistakes and I've been asked for the recipe by a load of  peeps. I'm sharing the love. The beauty of this recipe is as long as you keep the base quantities the same, you can pretty much chop and change it to your hearts content....... Hope you like xxx

Muesli bars

2 cups of rolled oats ( I use wholegrain,  they are low GI so keep you fuller for longer)
2 cups of ricies ( can substitute for any random cereal you might have lying round)
1 cup of shredded coconut
1 cup of mixed seeds ( I usually use small seeds like chia, flax seed, millet, sesame seeds)
!/2 cup of dried fruit (optional, i don't usually put it in, not great for kids and mine don't like it)
1/2 cup of nuts (optional, I like sliced almonds or chopped peanuts)

Put all of the above in a BIG bowl, mix.

Toffee (glue that holds them together):
125 grams of butter
1/4 of a cup of raw sugar
1/3 of a cup of honey
1/3 of a cup of nut butter ( I alternate between almond and peanut)

Put all of the above into a pot and stir over a low heat until the sugar has dissolved, once dissolved simmer on low for 5 mins until toffee has thickened, make sure you stir every so often to prevent catching,

Tip the toffee into the dry ingredients and stir quickly,. transfer in to a prepared slice tin, and press down firmly. I like to use a tin and roll the tin over the bars. It packs it down nicely and prevents the mixture sticking all over your hands!!
You can now leave it like this and pop it in to the fridge to set, all you can sprinkle some choc chips over the top yum! Takes a couple of hours to set, once set chop into bars, makes about 30. I keep ours in a container in the fridge.

Monday, 24 June 2013

Cold and cosy...........

Its cold in our little old Nelson, in fact I believe its cold in most of NZ at the moment.On Saturday the hills surrounding the city got a thick dusting of snow, it came down quite low and stayed around for most of the day. This is very unusual and a little exciting for us as we don't usually get snow at all!
We decided to go for a walk and soak in the atmosphere, it almost felt like we were on holiday in some little alpine village (one can wish)! On came the merino's, uggs and Puffers. Whilst I was getting Archie ready I noticed that he was wearing an entire mummy made wardrobe, so took the opportunity to snap a few pics!

Merino lounge pants

Merino tee with vintage pocket, long sleeve base layer

 The two tops were made for Charlie and are still going strong a couple of years later. The pants I made this winter for kindy, lovely warm and comfy!
Hope you all had a lovely weekend x

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

This past year .....

Ive run three running events, two half marathons and a 10k.....

Mahana Half Marathon
St Clair half Marathon
Kaiteriteri 10k

I've spent a lot of time here ....

Had an amazing summer with family, friends and lots of sun!


Had some crafty time, though didn't take a lot of pics :(

Cute high waisty!

merino shorts

yearly milo

Wow there you have it in a nut shell! I feel like these photo's are but the tip of the iceberg, but what can you do when you ignore your blog for almost a whole year!!
There has been a change in my life, coinciding I guess with the boys getting older.  I'm finding myself with a lot more 'me' time, and have really been enjoying trying out new things. These things tend to be more away from the home, and sporty in nature (i know right). The blog may have a a bit of a different emphasis, as I find myself more passionate about yoga and running, then baking and sewing. This does not however mean that I don't do the latter, just not as much as I used to!
Well if anyone is reading, thank you for sticking around! Hopefully I will as well :)


New beginings.....

hey peeps, i'm giving this Blogging thing another go! If you are still out there and want to catch up with whats been going on around here, please follow me on Bloglovin.
I've got loads of cool stuff to share, so much to catch up on, I'm excited!
Sarah xx

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Mustard Cowl ......

My sister in law is very gifted in the knitting department. She completes the most amazing projects, they always look perfect and flawless. Its the kind of knitting I aspire to do, one day, when I'm not interrupted every two seconds.
The last few times she has visited, she has been working on a cowl. A mustard cowl, two of my currant fav things put together. Last weekends visit, she presented the finished cowl and it was love. I 'borrowed' the cowl all weekend, the wool was gorgeous and soft, it really was deliciousness around my neck!  I was pleasantly surprised when it was 'accidently' left behind!!! Hopefully it has a long Vaca in Nelson!!
 Thanks Renee xxx

Monday, 13 August 2012

Sourdough goodness .....

As promised a long while back lets talk sourdough! Ive been making sourdough bread on and off for a couple of years now, I love it. So dense, aromatic and chewy, better for you too apparently! Amazing with blue cheese and quince jelly.... anyhow I digress.

When I first started making the bread, I was very lucky to be given some super ancient rye starter from a German friend. This starter had been handed down within her family for years. It made lovely bread, but unfortunately somehow, (I blame it on the plastic container it was accidentally put in to) it went mouldy, I know, couldn't believe it. Id had it for over a year, and now found myself with no starter.
Now for those of you who are not familiar with sourdough baking, the starter is the star ingredient. Its the yeast, it is what makes the bread rise and taste delicious! Each time you bake a loaf you use the original starter, make it into the sponge (more on this later) , then put some of the sponge aside to be the starter for the next loaf. Its a never ending cycle, unless it goes mouldy!

Being starterless, I had toyed with the idea of making my own but had always put it into the too hard basket, until I came across this blog post. It didn't look too hard,  the instructions were clear, and how cool is it to have starter specific to your own home!

So if you are interested in making your own starter, here's how I did it. One ceramic bowl, 100gms of rye flour and just enough luke warm water so it mixes to pancake batter consistency. Glad wrap the top of the bowl and put somewhere warm, by the fire in this house. Voila it really is that simple.

Starter day 1

 Basically the next few days you just feed the starter more flour and water, and around day 3 or 4 you will have to start discarding some starter or you will end up with bucket loads (lovely detailed instructions in link above). By the end of the week you should have a lovely bubbly, sour, yeasty smelling batter. Now you are ready to bake!

Starter day 7, ready to bake!

There are a huge amount of recipes out there for sourdough bread. I often use a traditianal french one that comes out really dense and chewy. It is a bit of a long process but very worth it. The other ive enjoyed recently is from the recipe off the link above. I have adapted it slightly to suit, as you do. I like this one as it cooks beautifully in a loaf tin, and is much less fiddly to make.
There you go, sourdough bread really isn't that scary. You do need to be patient as it takes a lot longer to rise then normal bread, but the wait is worth it and if you plan it right most of it can be done over night!

The best thing of baking in a loaf tin is toast!!

Basic Sourdough bread:

Make sponge:
Tip your starter into a bowl, add 100g ms of rye flour and enough water to bring to right consistency. Leave somewhere warm for a few hours until nice and bubbly.

Take half a cup of the starter out (this is for next time), then add to bowl: 100gms of rye flour, 100gms of wholemeal flour, 300gms of high grade white flour, 2 tbsps of olive oil, 1tsp of brown sugar, 2 tspns of salt. Add enough lukewarm water to form dough, tip on to a floured surface and knead for 10mins or so. (I usually do this step in the evening and let the dough rise over night next to the fire)
Pop dough in to an oiled bowl, cover and let rise to double in size.
Preheat oven to 200 degrees, shape and place dough on to pizza stone, oven tray or whatever you choose to bake your bread on, spritz oven with water and bake for 30-35 mins. Bread should sound hollow when taped.
If I'm baking bread in a loaf tin, I do the rising in the tin as well.
I also as mentioned above rise the dough through the night, then bake the bread in the morning,

Happy baking , Sarah xxx

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Rain ......

Its been raining here, a lot .........
I constantly feel grateful that Archie is such a laid back independent kid. We don't do much round here after kindy, this suits him perfectly. He LOVES hanging out at home with all his favourite things. At the moment Thomas is flavour of the day, in fact he's been a winner for months. As long as he has toys I honestly don't hear a peep from him. Its bizarre, I mean he is a three year old boy after all, his brothers were never like this!
We like to call him 'the dream' ........

So this afternoon this is what Archie did ......

Yes the trains have a CRASH everyday!

And this is what I did ......

Newborn 'milo'

My very first successful cable!
It was a lovely couple of hours. I do feel blessed that my third child is so low maintenance, so delicious and so enjoyable! Now the peace is about to be broken, and I must go and catch up on all the things I was meant to be doing xxxx