Friday, 24 August 2012

Book week

This year's Book Week characters are Anakin Skywalker and Doctor Who.

This is the first time I've tried blogging from my Samsung Galaxy tablet using the Blogger app. Not sure I'll ever love it, but it might do the job when we're on the road and without a real computer. The screen keyboard is not too bad, and now I've bought a Samsung USB /SD card connection kit and had a little play with it, it's not too hard to transfer photos from the camera and do some basic editing. Certainly not as easy as on the netbook, but I'm willing to compromise for the size and weight advantages for travelling.

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Science Week

I was a bit tired of the Doctor Who photo that's been sitting here for far too long. So I'm replacing it ... with more Doctor Who photos!

These were taken on the weekend at the CSIRO Discovery Centre. We were there for the Science Week activities, and had booked in for the Science of Doctor Who show.

It was a lot of fun, and the kids loved the show (as you can see, they went armed with sonic screwdrivers). The show involved a comedian (Rob Lloyd) and three 'serious' scientists - Allie Ford (astrophysicist/astrobiologist/astronomer, depending on the souce - maybe all of them), and physicists Martin White and David Jennens. They're all Doctor Who fans, and the group worked well together to make the science accessible for all ages. There was discussion of black holes, time travel, regeneration, life on other planets, sonic screwdrivers and plenty more, together with a lot of laughs.

Rob will be back in Canberra next year with his Who, Me show. Definitely one to look out for.

Saturday, 3 March 2012

Doctor Who birthday

A friend's daughter has requested that her mother make a Dalek cake for her fast-approaching birthday, which reminded me of a birthday the X-man attended in November.

Love the Chupachups and candles on the Daleks :) The signs and windows on the TARDIS were laminated print-outs. Love it!

Friday, 11 November 2011

Kid-size veges

Miss Tizz and the X-man were busy setting up their own vege garden this afternoon (with a couple of ring-ins from next door). If the snails don't do too much damage, we should have plenty of kid-size cherry tomatoes and mini iceberg lettuces ('ice cubes').

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Watch out!

The X-man started tae kwon do this week, and he's taking it VERY seriously!

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

We're going to the zoo, zoo, zoo!

We met up with my parents in Batemans Bay last weekend, and headed ten minutes up the road to Mogo Zoo on Sunday morning. It's a private zoo, with over 200 animals, and involved in the conservation of and breeding programs for a number of endangered species.

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

My new favourite bread recipe

I tried out a new bread recipe a couple of weeks ago, and it's become the family favourite. This one slices even better than the previous recipe, and has a lovely even texture that makes it great for sandwiches and toast.
It's another recipe from Down To Earth, and I've adapted it for the Thermomix, so all the hard work is done. If you're making bread by hand, go over to Rhonda's blog for her method.

  • 2 teaspoons dried yeast
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • ¼ cup warm (not hot) water 
  • 4 cups baker's flour
  • 1½ teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil 
  • 1 tablespoon milk powder
  • 1.5 - 2 cups warm (not hot) water  

Place yeast, sugar and  ¼ cup warm water in TMX bowl. Close lid and mix at speed 1-2 for a few seconds. Do something else for 5 minutes or so, and when you come back it should be frothy.

Add flour, salt, oil and milk powder, and 1 cup of water. Mix at speed 5-6 for 30 seconds, adding more water slowly while mixing until dough starts coming together. I usually need about 1.5 cups altogether, but it depends on the type of flour, the humidity, etc. and may vary. You really need to get to know how the dough feels, and that comes with practice.

Knead dough for 2 minutes on closed lid position.

Tip dough out onto mat/bench/board and knead by hand for a minute until smooth. If the dough seems a little dry, sprinkle some water on it and knead it in as you go. If it seems too sticky, do the same with a little more flour.

Form into a ball and place into a lightly oiled bowl. Cover (I use a little spray oil and cover with cling wrap to prevent the dough drying out, but a damp tea towel can also do the job) and leave somewhere warm and draft-free (not so crucial with the cling wrap) to prove. I've found this recipe rises much faster than the previous one I wrote about, so keep an eye on it.

Once doubled in size, tip out and knead by hand for two minutes. Shape and place in a tin lined with baking paper, or on an oven tray, sprinkle with water and add seeds if desired (we like sesame seeds). Cover (I use the same piece of cling wrap) and allow to rise again - about half an hour should do it.

Preheat oven to 250 degrees C. Bake on centre shelf for 6 mins, then turn oven down to 180-200 degrees and bake for 15-20 mins. You'll know when it's done by the fabulous smell and the golden crust.

Turn out onto a cooling rack. Slices best when fully cooled, but is delicious warm!