28 Jul 2011

Some muffins and more sewing

I have been a bit busy sewing for the forthcoming craft fair, and I can’t wait to show you photos but I am afraid you’ll have to wait a little bit more.

Today I decided to make some Yogurt and Honey muffins to put in the lunch boxes of Lovely Little Daughter and Lovely Husband. They turned out well but I should have put a bit more honey or maybe a bit of brown sugar…and maybe a bit more butter would have ensured the smooth removal of the paper…

A good tip I found in the BBC Good Food magazine if you are using honey, is to spread a bit of oil on the spoon you’ll be using. Wow, it works really well, not a drop of honey was left on the spoon. However I should have greased a bit the little pot I was using as I noticed at the end that some honey was left on the bottom.
 I don’t actually know why I have the brown sugar out! The recipe did not ask for any brown sugar.

 Have a yummy evening!

Irina xx

27 Jul 2011

Miss Sugarmint Design and Craft Fair

If you are going to be in Frankfurt the following weekend than why don’t you come and visit Miss Sugarmint craft fair. The fair has been organised by a lovely lady who is a fellow crafty mum and makes some absolutely cute little t-shirt embellishments and other kiddie things. However it won’t all be for the kids, there will be jewellery, home inspirations and off course coffee and cake! Oh and guess what, I will be there with my label Horstmann & Little.
It is so very exciting ( it is my first fair, well apart of the Wimbledon Park fair in London last year, which was very much in it's infancy and really just a trial), and I am thinking about what to sell, how to prepare my table, how to make everything look pretty and nice.

Off to do more sewing…


22 Jul 2011

This moment

{this moment}

A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

Summer Fruit Lollies

I wanted to make some fruit lollies for ages and these Watermelon, Organic Vanilla Yogurt and Cherries lollies are so sweet and absolutely yummy…

I only had red fruits this time but will try them again with other fruits as they were so easy to make…

Irina xx

21 Jul 2011

In The Bottom Drawer

A recent post from “A spoonful of sugar” prompted me to look for my own UFO’s…oh dear!

I never start a new book, before I finish the old one so I simply assumed that this rule will somehow subconsciously be applied to my sewing and creating projects…and I managed to keep up with it for a while until I discovered my UFO’s drawer. I didn’t really know I had a UFO drawer, but it is there, the very last one in my wonky metal cabinet and through the holes of the mesh I could see things, long ago started but never finished. Yes things, not one, not two but many big or small sewing attempts which for one reason or another were never completed.

Whole nine UFO's were patiently waiting to be rediscovered:
A slice of cake waiting to have the "chocolate" stick sewn back
A duck I made a couple of years ago who's leg needs repairing

A soft ball, otherwise ready but missing the final stitch
A robot cushion I started before Christmas
Train cushion started at the same time as above
Oh dear, remember this one...still unfinished
After I made six letter cushions I got a bit bored hence the unfinished M
I was going to make continuous bias tape but never got round to doing it
Baby bed decoration...
Let’s see which one to start first!

Do you have UFO's lurking in some bottom drawer?
Irina xx

18 Jul 2011

Mini muffins for little fingers

Lovely Little Daughter and I made some Mini Banana Muffins yesterday. Banana muffins are a big thing in our house as we always have bananas for porridge and I no longer throw them in the bin when they turn brown, now I make muffins. What did I do before I discovered banana muffins?!
The idea for muffins came when our daughter started to eat different foods and I wanted to give her something sweet but I really wanted to give her something a bit better than the different things I can buy from the bakery. Everything there seems to be made from wheat flower and surely uses white sugar. Making muffins for / with her is fun and it also allows me to make them a bit healthier by using brown flour and brown sugar and even add oat flakes. I always put less sugar than the recipe calls for and haven’t had a complaint so far.

We never tried mini ones, but they are perfect for little fingers and are gone in three bites…

Ingredients for 12:
Group 1:
2-3 tbsp melted butter or raps oil
1 tbsp milk
2-3 very ripe bananas – mashed
1 egg
Oat flakes – optional
½ cup brown sugar OR ¼ cup brown sugar + one tbsp spoon Golden Syrup

Group 2:
1 cup wholegrain flour
½ tea sp baking soda
¼ tea spoon baking powder

Preheat the oven to 200C. Mix all Group 1 ingredients in one ball. In another ball mix all Group 2 ingredients. Add group 1 to group 2 and mix well. If needed add a tbsp of milk. Spoon the mixture into the paper cups and into your muffin tray. Bake for 25-30 min.

Hope you are having a nice Monday!


17 Jul 2011

I love new fabrics

I got lovely comments on my post “Delicious cake for a rainy day”, so before I show you the little pile of new fabrics that I acquired during our holiday in Northern Germany, I would like to share the recipe for the cake – it is fool proof, seriously tasty and easier that I ever thought! Try it!

From the book “Frame by frame – baking” purchased at Marks and Spencer’s and given to me as a Christmas gift by Lovely Mum two years ago…

Blueberry and Passionfruit Drizzle Squares (makes 9 squares)

150g butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
2 eggs
175g golden caster sugar
175g slef raising flour
90ml milk
finely grated zest of one lemon
225g blueberries

4 ripe passionfruits
115g icing sugar, plus extra, sifted for dusting

Preheat the oven to 190C and grease and base-line a 23cm cake tin.
Whisk the butter, eggs and sugar until pale and fluffy. Fold in the flour lightly and evenly.
Stir in the milk, lemon zest and 175g blueberries. Spread into the cake tin.
Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30min until firm and golden brown. Remove from the oven and leave in the tin.
Meanwhile make the syrup. Scoop the pulp from the passionfruit and rub through a sieve. Discard the pips.
Place the icing sugar and the passion fruit juice in a saucepan and heat gently, stirring, until the sugar dissolves.
Prick the warm cake with a fork and spoon the syrup evenly over the surface.
Leave the cake to cool completely in the tin and cut into 9 squares. Enjoy!

And now back to sewing and fabrics…I picked up a few fabrics at the Dutch Fabric Market, a bought some in a shop called Charlotta’s in Hamburg and I discovered some lovely prints on sale at the Alster House in the centre of Hamburg.

Below are some simple combinations and I am still wondering what to do, but I really love the cars fabric and maybe I will cover some little buttons to sew onto a jumper or to use for some other decoration…

Off to make mini banana muffins...
Enjoy your Sunday!
Irina xx

14 Jul 2011

Wall frames

That’s it; I am finally converted into using glue with fabric. It took a very long time as I always tried to avoid gluing fabric, but I tried it for some wall frames I made for Lovely Little Daughter and her little friends.

I picked up this set of stamps at the local Idee shop in Hamburg and they are just so cool. The right font I always wanted with a little bit of vintage twist (just a shame there are no numbers included).

I had to try them and I decided to make a room sign for Lovely Little Daughter’s room. She thought it was very nice but I wish I had made the bunting out of fabric and not out of paper. The little fabric rosette is very easy to make although I had to do it a few times but here is the tutorial I followed – it is very well explained and includes colour photos. But beware – the rosettes are highly addictive!

A few weeks ago when asked who her best friend is, our daughter quite cleverly got away by saying that she had a Girl Best Friend and a Boy Best Friend - how sweet!. So at her request I made some wall frames for her friends!

I loved making the frames, it made a nice change from sewing!

Irina xx

13 Jul 2011

Delicious cake for a rainy day

Hello everybody, we are back in Frankfurt after a lovely, although a bit rainy holiday at the Baltic Sea! It was the first proper holiday for Lovely Little Daughter and she was absolutely amazed by everything - she did a lot of sand digging, wave splashing, shell collecting, beach running, getting spoiled by Oma and Opa and generally exploring and expanding her little world. For us it was a pure pleasure to watch our little girl in her innocent quest of discovering!
Unfortunately the weather in Frankfurt is quite rainy, which is actually a very good excuse of staying at home and reading favourite blogs or making things - boy I missed sewing!

As you probably know Germany is the country of the gateau and there are hundreds of delicious sweet creations. It is not very easy to impress a German with a new cake but my Blueberry and Passion Fruit Drizzle Square is a sure winner, or so says Lovely Husband! Maybe he's just being kind...

Well the cake was deeelicious and I will post the recipe in the next few days.

And now off to crafting and making...

Irina xx