Monday, 31 January 2011

Kat's White Chocolate and Ginger Cheesecake

Many moons ago, when me and my partner actually went out for meals occasionally (now a film and a kebab constitutes as romantic, apparently) we shared a dessert in Wagamama’s in Manchester; a white chocolate and ginger cheesecake. (So yes, you got me, it's actually Wagamama's cheesecake; but they didn't share their recipe, so this is mine!)

We both adored it! And one of my few homely skills (I don’t clean, my plants die (except orchids!) and heaven help you if you need something sewing up) is cooking. I love eating, which helps, and my mum is just amazing at cooking and I’m not bad either! So, I decided to attempt said cheesecake, and their chilli toffee sauce.

Now, guests tell us they will only come round if they can have this cheesecake, and my 83 year old great aunt can not only polish huge portions of it off, but takes extra home too! Normally, she eats like a very full sparrow.

So I thought I would share this lovely recipe, because it really is lovely it it’s the easiest thing to make! You can whip it up in twenty minutes as a last minute “bloody hell the guests are here soon and I’ve not even brushed my hair” dessert.

Do note thought that I have made all this up and I am in fact guestimating every time I make it. Which means, it does often come out differently. I will approximate the ingredients, but you really need to experiment and find your own footing :]



These are the ingredients you will need.

White Chocolate
Crème Fraîche
Ginger Pieces in Syrup
Choc-Chip Cookies

OK so I forgot to put the ginger in the “ingredients” picture, and when I noticed I’d used them, so too bloody late!

But this really is all you need.

1. You need to break a whole pack of choc-chip cookies up. A food blender is ideal for this, but if you’re like me, and don’t have one, then you can just keep hitting them with things. (This does get messy!) You want them fairly small, but the odd half centimetre piece is nice for a bit of crunch!

2. Melt around a dessertspoon (to a dessertspoon and a half) full (and by full I mean heaped!) of butter and mix this in with the cookie crumb. Then press this down in to your chosen cake tin; I highly recommend one with a push-up bottom!

3. *Optional* Next you need to take out some ginger pieces out of the syrup and thinly slice them. To be honest, I normally miss this step out, but it’s for my mum and she loves ginger! Lay them out randomly on the cookie base

4. Now you should place the base in the fridge to harden up a bit. Not essential, I just do!

5. Next you need a whole pack of mascarpone (Mine is 250g. I have no idea if they come in different sized packs!), 2 dessertspoons (heaped) of crème fraîche and some of the ginger syrup. The ginger syrup and white chocolate portions are to taste, really, but as a guide I normally use around 3 dessertspoons of syrup and 250g of good quality white chocolate. While whisking the cheese, cream and syrup, melt the white chocolate.

6. Once it’s all whisked up (stiff peaks is quite “moussey” and soft peaks is more creamy) you should pour the white chocolate in while whisking on a low speed.

7. Now all you need to do, is pour it (or smoosh it, if it was stiff peaks) over your base and bob’s your uncle; you have a cheesecake! No baking or fussing required :]

Now, just pop that in the fridge to set!

Chilli Toffee Sauce

These are the ingredients you will need.

Dark Sugar
Golden Syrup
Chili Powder

1. Firstly, you need to place the butter, sugar and syrup in a pan. I use around the same quantity of butter and sugar, and around half of that for the syrup.

2. You need to bring this to the boil and then take it off the heat.

3. While stirring, pour in around 2 dessertspoons of double cream and some chilli powder. Now, I am not a major fan of spice (much to my parents disgust!) and I use around 3 teaspoons (level) of chilli power and this is a good kick! But, when you first put it in and taste it, remember it will get a bit (not much, but a bit) hotter as it rests!

Please do try this dessert and enjoy! And forever call it “Kat’s Cheesecake” :] x

Friday, 28 January 2011

A Poorly Folksy Friday

I have just retired from work early, feeling like poo :[ so before I go and hide under a couple of lovely, warm quilts, I thought I’d sneak in a quick Folksy Friday.

When ill, nothing quite hits the spot like a big bowl of homemade chicken soup. Unless you’re a vegetarian. Or don’t like chicken. But I fall in to neither of those categories!

So here is a “Chicken Folksy Friday” in honour of wonderful soup and my bug!

(I also really like chickens. If I were an animal, I think I’d be a chicken. I think it’s their fat little bums and their waddling. I relate :] )

Hope you liked the “chooks”! :] x

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Water Marbling

Last night, after we ploughed our way through our homemade apple sauce, black pudding and spinach baguettes (the weirdest tea you’ve ever heard of? Perhaps. But we like it. That’s what my partner is trying to demonstrate, by the way) I decided to try water marbling my nails again.

Now, I am writing about this not because I am so egotistical I think you all give a flying flock of flamingos what I wear on my nails, but because I want to know your experiences, if there are any, of doing this.

I tried it quite a while ago, and to no avail. But I was recently inspired by this lovely lady who makes it look so easy!

So, filled to the brim with newfound confidence in my abilities and with a few of her handy tips on board I thought “Bugger it! Let’s have another go!”

The confidence, I fear, was wildly overrated.

I used room temperature bottled water (don’t die; we buy them from Costco. They’re only around 10p a bottle. It wasn’t san pellegrino.) I dropped the varnish in close to the water so it didn’t sink and I let it dry a little before plunging my finger in. I cleared up while my finger was still in, and it still isn’t pretty rubbish.

Mainly, I think, the polish doesn’t spread properly. The first few drops do, and then it’s just a beautifully coloured, gooey puddle in the water I’m supposed to be marbling.

But hey, here are the pictures! If you are good at this then advice would not be pooh-poohed!

These were the polishes I used, but in the end I only used the 4 on the right. And I can’t remember their names! So I’ll edit this or comment later with them :]

So I did my base coat, and then a coat of the OPI white (Alpine snow?) and wrapped my fingers in tape, like the lovely lady I mentioned earlier, suggested. (It was a very good way of keeping clean!)

This was them in the water. Crap :[

(Don’t look at the bubbles and flaws!)

So there we are. Some worked out OK-ish. They looked a bit better after I cleaned them up more this morning (after my shower. I’m too lazy to get it all off with cotton buds!)

Please share any pictures or experiences :] x

PS. Check her out! because she is amazing at this!

Friday, 21 January 2011

Two Blogs. One Day. Spoilt!

And indeed you are spoilt. Not just because you get to read a new and exciting instalment from myself, but also because I am going to blog now about some pretty bloody amazing things!

If you actually know me, you will know I have quite the little shopping addiction, which was made all the worse when I discovered how much was at my finger tips with the internet and indeed Folksy. (I’m serious. I hear people saying what they’ve bought and they’re a “nice to have a glass of wine every now and then” addict and I’m a crack whore.)

Anyway! Shopping has really kept me sane the past few months when I have pretty much not left the house. It staved off cabin fever like limes and scurvy.

So to thank people, I have selected a few of the nicest things to show you. Not all from folksy either. And I do love much, much more but I believe you’d glaze over if I listed everything. I do love it all.

I have other favourites too, but never fear, as I will be doing a “things in my house” instalment when I’ve tidied up.

So the first are my new nail polishes. Bloody beautiful colours and I did take a sample picture of one per finger but I had no memory card in. And by that point I’d already cleaned them off and gone for the bright blue! But these are the colours, and that’s the blue. I will do them. Eventually.

The colour on my nails is Ocean, by Pop Beauty. I used to have this colour ages ago but I threw it all over my boyfriend's bed. He got new bedding out of it, and I lost a nail varnish. Yet I still apologised? Tragic. So I bought it again recently.

And then the next lovely things are two necklaces from Folksy that I just love!

Firstly, and long overdue, is a gorgeous custom-made apron, by Audrey’s cat! Unfortunately I was alone in the house, so the best I could do was it folded on the couch. But it really is amazing and I wanted you all to see it, none the less!

Audrey’s Cat

Folksy jewellery, the first of which is a set of pearls from LouLousLuxuries. Elegant and simple :]


The second is a meadow seen, by the amazing Aileen Clark Crafts. I think it’s just amazing. Seriously one of my favourite purchases ever.

Aileen Clark Crafts

The next three necklaces are from Etsy and they are just so adorable! I have a sloth in the post, too, which I cannot wait to receive. This woman is seriously talented!

Motley Mutton

Motley Mutton

Motley Mutton

The next are “things I’ve been up to”. I bought some lovely freshwater pearls from The Little Bead Box (link in picture comment) and with her help and a little guidance I made my mum a matching pearl necklace and bracelet set for her birthday, next week. And I’m pretty damn proud, too :] (Though I did make Mike so all the fiddly parts. I have Shrek hands.)

The Little Bead Box

And finally (I can hear the sigh of relief!) is a few things that I will be hoping to put up soon, amongst flamingos and goldfish and swimmers :]

Bit long? Sorry! x

Folksy Friday-Relief!

I can now heave a sigh of relief and say that I have just finished my last exam of the semester. I get a few free months. (I call them free. They call them lectures.)

And to celebrate my temporary freedom, I shall write my Folksy Friday blog on something that has not only kept me calm at my darkest hours of despair, but will celebrate with me now and come along for the free month ride too; tea!

But not just. No. The components that make up a very lovely tea-time treat!

Enjoy! I certainly will :]

The Request

The Cup

The Pot

The Cosy

The Tea

The Milk

The Biscuits

Friday, 7 January 2011

Folksy Friday Fit for a New Year!

The first Friday in a New Year! If I’m completely honest, I don’t really subscribe to the hype for New Year. When I was younger, a year seemed like an eternity, full of excitement and long, lazy summer days, and eons until Christmas. And everyone smugly informed me that as I grew up years would get shorter. And in my little, cocky, logical self, I informed them that “years are exactly the same length, no matter how old you are. And no, you are not catching me up. You will always be 50 years my senior.” (I’ll stop. Or this may turn in to a rant.) But alas, they do at the very least seem shorter.

So for me now, a year is just one step closer to having a job, being out of education (and no, university is not the best time of my life, haughty people from earlier!) and a step closer to death. But, you all buy in to it! So, a new year, a new road. What could be more fitting that maps to guide us on our way?

Enjoy :] x

Map Garland

"Where I Love You"

Map Necklace

Map Box

Map Gift Tags

Map Cameo Print

Map Lampshade

Map Cushion