Play-dough in the microwave?!

As you may notice, there is a quite a time gap between my previous post and this one.  And I have two beautiful kids to show for that! 🙂  They keep me busy, or rather, I choose to keep myself busy with them.  I’m a working mom, so I don’t get to spend as much time with them as I’d like, but I do want to make the most of the time that I have with them.  I’ve developed a bit of an obsession with Pinterest, especially to find quick, nutritious (kid friendly) recipes, and also easy, fun development activities.  So, here’s one of my kids’ favourites!  Play-dough!

My all time favourite play-dough recipe up until now has been a stove top recipe from Erika’s blog, Living Well Mom.  It’s so simple and quick to make, and the texture of the play-dough is phenomenal.

But recently a new recipe caught my attention, and it’s a microwave recipe!  Seems too good to be true.  I found it on Pinterest, and the recipe is from the blog Fun At Home With Kids.  I’m yet to try out the recipe, but I’m super excited about the idea.

I’ve tried different play-dough recipes, such as the conditioner & cornflour, and jello based dough, and although the textures are interesting, it’s not as nice as good old fashioned cooked play-dough.

I cannot wait to give the new microwave play-dough recipe a try! Let me know if you have tried it?

Caramel Condensed Milk: Chocolate Cake Topping

chocolate caramel cakeInstead of icing or melted chocolate, try caramel condense milk as a topping for chocolate cake! In South Africa we can buy caramel condensed milk in a can, but while living in England, I couldn’t find it anywhere!

Here’s how you can make your own caramel condensed milk, using sweetened condense milk:

Method #1

  • Pour the condensed milk into a pan.
  • Put it on medium-low heat, stirring continuously. (for 10-15 mins)
  • Take off the heat when you can turn a cooled tablespoon of it upside down without it falling off.

Method #2

  • Immerse closed can on its side in a pot of water and bring to the boil.
  • Leave on a simmer or light boil for 2 – 2.5 hours, topping up with water as needed
  • Remove from heat and let it cool down completely before opening can.
  • Don’t open the can while its still hot. The condensed milk should be thick and a nice caramel color.

Be careful and don’t let the water dry out, else the can will burst!

Spread the caramel over the chocolate (or vanilla) sponge cake once the cake is cooled off completely.  Decorate with grated chocolate.

Doughnut Muffins

doughnut-muffinsIngredients for the muffins

350ml unsalted butter, warmed to room temperature
440ml sugar
4 large eggs
6 cups all-purpose flour
1 Tbs. plus 2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1-3/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground nutmeg
1-2/3 cups milk
1/4 cup buttermilk

Ingredients for dipping

200ml unsalted butter; more as needed
2 cups sugar
2 Tbs. ground cinnamon


Put a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F.
In a stand mixer or a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar.
Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until just mixed in.
Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and nutmeg.
Combine the milk and buttermilk. With a wooden spoon, mix a quarter of the dry ingredients into the butter mixture.
Then mix in a third of the milk mixture. Continue mixing in the remaining dry and wet ingredients alternately, ending with the dry.
Mix until well combined and smooth, but don’t overmix.
Grease and flour a standard-size muffin tin.
Scoop enough batter into each tin so that the top of the batter is even with the rim of the cup, about 1/2 cup. (A #16 ice-cream scoop gives you the perfect amount.)
Bake the muffins until firm to the touch, 30 to 35 minutes.

To finish
Melt the butter for the dipping mixture. Combine the sugar and cinnamon. When the muffins are just cool enough to handle, remove them from the tin, dip them into or brush them all over with the melted butter, and then roll them in the cinnamon sugar.

Triple Chocolate Biscotti

chocolate biscotti


1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
3 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
8 ounces semisweet chocolate chips (I used 1.5 large slabs Bourneville dark chocolate, chopped in the blender)


Line large baking sheet with double thickness of foil. Sift flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt into medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat sugar and butter in large bowl to blend. Beat in eggs 1 at a time, then vanilla. Beat in flour mixture. Stir in semisweet and white chips. Drop dough by heaping tablespoonfuls onto prepared sheet in two 10- to 11-inch-long strips, spacing 3 inches apart. Using metal spatula or wet fingertips, shape strips into 11- by 2 1/2-inch logs. Refrigerate 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake logs until tops are cracked and dry and tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 25 minutes; cool 10 minutes.
Reduce oven temperature to 300°F. Using foil as aid, lift logs onto work surface. Line baking sheets with clean foil. Using serrated knife, gently cut warm logs crosswise into 3/4-inch-thick slices. Arrange half of slices, cut side down, on each prepared baking sheet. Bake biscotti until just dry to touch, about 8 minutes. Turn biscotti over. Bake until top is dry to touch, about 8 minutes. Cool on sheets.

(Dip in melted chocolate of your choice & then drizzle with remaining chocolate – I used 1.5 large slabs Bourneville dark chocolate, melted)