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Who can resist a tin full of melting moments made by your kids? – I certainly can’t. My love of melting moments actually started whilst on maternity leave with Jake now 5 years. A Plunket (NZ postnatal care) friend Sarah, with a baby...



I’m always surprised when someone says to me Happy Mothers Day, or refers to me as a mum. I still feel very much the daughter even though I have two scalliwags myself now. Maybe it’s because our mum, Val still looks after Vanessa and...


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Posted on: September 8th, 2014 by Vanessa Opera 3 Comments


Flourless chocolate peanut butter brownies

I couldn’t resist these brownies from Karen of Sydney blog, Citrus and Candy. Made with hazelnut meal instead of flour these gluten free slabs are easy to make, ultra fudgy but light. Package them up with this Sweet Treats Bakery box and you’ve got the perfect Valentines treat for your special someone. Vanessa


When a recipe combines my two daily ‘must haves’ chocolate and espresso coffee I’m instantly paying attention. These Chocolate and espresso melting moments created by Allison of Pease Pudding blog would be such a special treat on Valentines Day. Pile them high on a glass cake stand with a dome  and wait for the response. Ingrid  

Posted on: February 4th, 2013 by Ingrid Opera No Comments


Easy chocolate chip cookie mix!

Christmas is a busy and expensive time. Like I said in the last post, there is nothing better than a (good) homemade Christmas present. When you have kids, there are many presents to buy, not just for them but for their teachers, daycare staff and friends.
My son loves to get involved in anything I am doing and cooking is no exception. Its always messy, pretty hectic and fingers crossed what we cook works out!
These cookies are really easy, in-fact I would say “no-fail”. They are also the sort of cookie you can adapt and add what ever you want.

Really easy to make – Chocolate chip cookies

I bought chocolate buttons instead of chips because they were the cheapest at the time, in hindsight next time I would go for the chocolate chips as they look better. We did try crushing them up with a rolling pin but doing this with a nearly 4 year old boy – wasn’t that successful!
Another tip is to make the cookies small, just a teaspoon full is all you really need. You will probably have to bake a few batches but they don’t take long at all.

A great gift for daycare or kindy friends or even the teachers!
Now for the credits, the recipe came from “Allyson Gofton, BAKE”. The only change I made was adding real vanilla paste. You could add dried fruit, spices, nuts or white chocolate – really anything would work! It seems a really forgiving recipe meaning if you get the exact amounts a little wrong, it really shouldn’t make a huge difference. If you have baked with kids you will know what I mean!
I plan to wrap them in cellophane with a ribbon and a hand stamped swing tag with either a name or Merry Xmas. I saw on Facebook that “OFFICE MAX” has the entire alphabet for about $30. I am going to hunt them down.
The book

Allyson Gofton toll house cookies

What you need 

175 grams butter
¾ cup brown sugar
¾ cup caster sugar
2 eggs
2¼ cups flour (I used self raising and NO BP – worked fine) 
1 tsp baking powder

2 cups chocolate chips
How to make 
Beat the butter and sugars together until light and creamy.
Add the eggs one at a time beating well after each addition.
Sift the flour and baking powder evenly over the creamed mixture. Sprinkle over the chocolate chips and fold together.
Place heaped tablespoonfuls of mixture onto a greased baking tray, leaving room for the biscuits to spread.
Bake at 180ºC for 20 minutes or until the biscuits are beginning to lightly brown and are firm to the touch. Transfer to a cake rack to cool. Store in an airtight container.
Happy Baking 
Posted on: December 10th, 2011 by Vanessa and Ingrid 7 Comments


Lemon Polenta Cookies – fantastic to bake with toddlers 
Happy Mothers Day to all those busy mums out there. I never knew how demanding being a mum could be until I had my own son. I often feel like a bungy cord, being stretched and pulled BUT thankfully always bouncing back!
My son loves to bake – hes only 3 but clearly sees me in the kitchen and wants a piece of the action. Usually its a messy affair and the results are not the usual adult standard, however these crunchy cookies worked out perfectly. The great thing about them is, its a dough and you can give the littlie some to play with and hopefully it will keep him busy whilst you make the “real” nicely shaped cookies that are thin and crunchy unlike your child’s chunky creation.
Adding polenta and zesty lemon make them adult friendly too, as does the lemon drizzle icing. No food colouring, not too much of a sugar rush and thin enough to eat a few and not feel like you have pigged out.
Dads, give it ago and treat her this Sunday!
Top tip – make sure the clean up is spot on!
Lemon polenta cookies – the pics in the background are of our own mum having fun with the girls – your the best mum!  
lemon Polenta Cookies
What you need
125g butter softened
1/2 cup of Sugar
2 egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
Lemon zest from one large lemon
3/4 cup Polenta
1 1/4 cup Flour
How to make
Pre heat oven to 160 degrees and line a baking tray with baking paper.
Cream butter and sugar until pale.
Add egg yolks, zest and vanilla and mix in to the creamed mixture.
Add the polentas and flour and mix until you have a dough like consistency.
Now, this is when you give your littlie some dough and let them play with it!
In the meantime you “quickly” start to roll out the dough about 1/2 cm thick and cut into shapes with a cookie cutter.
You will probably need to add more flour so the cookies don’t stick to the bench.
Place on the baking tray and bake for about 15 minutes or until pale.
You can either ice them with lemon icing or dust them with icing sugar.
Lemon Polenta Cookies  – for mum
Posted on: May 7th, 2011 by Vanessa and Ingrid No Comments