Monday, February 23, 2009

Interview with Penny

Penny has "interviewed" me ... here's her questions and my answers :-)

1. I know that you (and I) like to bake. Tell us a favourite recipe and why you like it.
Heehee it probably appears from my blog that I bake a lot, but really I don't! I used to when we were first married, but put a stop to that after a few months and several kgs of weight gain!!!! Hummm what baking recipe would be my favourite? Decisions, decisions ... I think I will have to go with two ... a cake and a muffin :-)

Cake - (I've shared this recipe before actually)
Reason I like it's got chocolate in it :-) But the combination of chocolate, apple, pistachios and lemon zest is just delicious :-) You ought to try it!!

Apple, Chocolate and Nut Cake
200g butter, softened
200 g (1 cup) caster sugar
4 large eggs
pinch of salt
225g (1 3/4 cups) plain flour, sifted
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder, sifted
200g dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
2 applies, peeled, cored and cut into small dice
1 cup pistachio nuts
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest.

Preheat the oven to 180 degC. Cream the butter and sugar in a bowl until pale and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Stir in the salt, flour and baking powder until well combined. Stir in the chocolate, apples, nuts and lemon zest. Pour into a lightly buttered 22cm loose-bottomed cake tin. Bake for 1 hour. Allow to cool in the tin for 5 minutes then turn out onto a wire cooling rack. Serve the cake warm while the chocolate is still soft, with lashings of lightly whipped cream. If the cake cools before you serve it, simply warm portions in the microwave.

With fruity, moist cakes like this a skewer test will not always indicate when the cake is cooked. It is ready when the top is firm and the cake comes away from the sides of the tin.

Muffins -
Reason I like these ... The topping is what makes these muffins just delicious. I make them in mini muffin tins so they are bite size and you get more of a lemon taste. Also being small I can sort of justify having 3 or 4 of them at a time LOL.

Crunchy Lemon Muffins
2 cups self raising flour
¾ cup sugar
75 g butter
1 cup milk
1 egg

Melt butter, beat in egg and milk.
Add dry ingredients and fold together – take care not to over mix.
Bake at 220°C for 10-14 minutes.

When still hot pour over grated rind of 1 lemon, ¼ cup lemon juice and ¼ cup sugar.
Remove muffins from pans before completely cool.

A tip (from experience) if you have good non-stick muffin tins they are best, because the topping soaks into the muffin. I have to use little paper cups for my tins now and the topping also runs down the outside of paper which makes the papers a bit sticky and it doesn't absorb into the muffin as much.

2. If you were on a desert island what scrapbooking things would you HAVE to have in order to scrapbook? (Assuming you have photos and cutting devices).
Humm you haven't given me a limit!! That could be dangerous! First up would be cardstock, cardstock and more cardstock (is that one or 3 items??), journalling pens, glimmer mists, alpha stickers, brads & ribbon stash. Actually I could keep going ... but those would be things I would probably look for first.

3. A Chocolate or lemon dessert... which would you choose from a menu?
Ohhhh ... such a tough decision. But seriously ... if I've had a meal as well then I would probably choose a fresh fruit platter (with a jug of chocolate sauce!) and a scoop of vanilla ice-cream :-)

4. What's the one thing you're proudest of having accomplished in the past five years?
Being brave enough to change my mind about moving overseas!! When Lyndon first told me about this job I just said 'NO, forget it'! Change the subject, walk away.

But a few days later I was talking to my Dad and he just said some things to me that made me realise I was being really selfish. So I actually re-opened the conversation with Lyndon again and we talked about it. Okay, to be honest I wasn't the most excited about it all, and being 8 months pregnant with Maddison when the word came through that it was all go didn't help either! But just think what I would have missed out on if I had said NO and left it at that!

So yeah, I am pretty proud of that. It's been an awesome experience that I really wouldn't have missed for anything :-)

5. What is the thing that most surprises you about being a grown-up?
Ummm am I a grown-up?? :-} (Some days I wonder!) I don't know ... this is such a Penny question that I am stumped! :-) Surprised that I am "middle aged" (man I hate those words) already, have two live wire kids, a wonderful hubby, and living over here. 20 years ago ... who would have thought!!!! (Actually 20 years ago I'd just met Lyndon! but that's another story.)

Thanks Penny, hope I've answered your questions properly!

Now, if you would like ME to interview YOU, here’s what to do:
1. Leave me a comment saying, “Interview me.”
2. I will email you 5 questions.
3. You answer the questions on your blog.


topkatnz said...

MMMMmm ... I love Crunchy Lemon muffins too ... but I loooove a chocolate dessert, with plenty of chocolate topping best!!LOL ... Ok, interview me ...

Penny said...

Haw haw! I still feel surprised that I'm "middle aged"! That seems really weird to me.

Good on ya for stepping out of your comfort zone wrt going to KL. :)

I find it hard to decide between chocolate things and lemon flavoured things. They are two of my favourites.

Thanks for playing the interview game!

Matthew & Amy said...

Matt adores the Chocolate Apple & Nut cake too - always his first request!

Anonymous said...

Crunchy Lemon Muffins, here I come!
Thanks for putting this recipe up, Rachel.

fulltime mom