Lemon Cupcake-in-a-Mug

Sometimes you just need cake.  Sometimes you just need cake but are well aware that baking an entire cake could prove dangerous.  Because you will eat it all yourself and fall into a pit of self-loathing so deep that there would be no ladder long enough to reach you.  So that’s where little cheats come in.  Cupcake cheats.  Lemony delicious soul-soothing cupcake cheats that make very little washing up and can be eaten quickly so there is no evidence of your adulting failures.  This recipe is super easy and the taste is yummo-licious.  Nice and tangy and citrussy (is that a word?) and very satisfying.  PLus it takes about 5 minutes to make and cook.  I’ll go back on my diet on Monday (I’ve been ill this week and so everything diet-and-exercise-wise went out the window).

Lemon Cupcake-in-a-Mug


3 tablespoons caster sugar
3 tablespoons plain flour
pinch salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1 egg
2 tablespoons sunflower oil (or vegetable oil of your choice)
1 teaspoon lemon zest
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice


In a 16oz mug, mix together the dry ingredients.  Add the wet ingredients and combine until you have a nice smooth batter.

Microwave on high for approx 1 1/2 minutes.  Check cake and microwave for another 10-20 seconds if need be.  Don’t overcook.  Cake should be moist and springy to touch.  Let cool for 5 minutes and sprinkle with a little icing sugar if desired.  Then eat!  Yummo!



Poem for the Day : Not

You are not your age,
Nor the size of clothes you wear,
You are not a weight,
Or the colour of your hair.
You are not your name,
Or the dimples in your cheeks,
You are all the books you read,
And all the words you speak.
You are your croaky morning voice,
And the smiles you try to hide,
You’re the sweetness in your laughter,
And every tear you’ve cried.
You’re the songs you sing so loudly,
When you know you’re all alone,
You’re the places that you’ve been to,
And the one that you call home.
You’re the things that you believe in,
And the people that you love,
You’re the photos in your bedroom,
And the future you dream of.
You’re made of so much beauty,
But it seems that you forgot,
When you decided that you were defined,
By all the things you’re not.

Erin Hansen




Quote for the Day : Paths

“…Everyone has their own path.
Walk yours with integrity and wish all others peace on their journey.
When your paths merge, rejoice for their presence in your life.
When the paths are separated, return to the wholeness of yourself,
give thanks for the footprints left on your soul,
and embrace the time to journey on your own…”

— Unknown

Kokoda Track, King’s Park, WA

Vegan “Meat” Balls

Hello, everyone!  I meant to post this before Christmas and then got a little bit sidetracked with, um, Christmas.  Seems like a long time ago now…

My brother and his partner are currently giving veganism a go and so, as Christmas was at their house, we had to come up with something to contribute to the dinner that night.  Normally, this wouldn’t be such an issue – Mum and I are already vegetarian – but because I have kidney issues, a lot of vegan-friendly foods are off the menu.  No chickpea casserole or lentil burgers for me!  So it became a little trickier to figure out what to bring.  And I didn’t want to wuss out and bring something just for me to eat.

Mum was in charge of dessert, so I told her to just make apple pie which is easy to do (just substitute any butter in the pastry with a non-dairy spread) and we served it with soy ice-cream.  Simple!  So she got off lightly.

I had to figure something else out for a savoury dish.  So I came up with these vegan “meat” balls.  I don’t have an exact recipe – I was too busy testing and mixing to actually write down any measurements – but you will get the general gist of things here.  It’s a bit of a keep-adding-stuff-until-you-get-it-right kind of recipe anyway.

Start with the binding agent, which in this recipe is flax seed meal.  Add three tablespoons of water to one of flax meal and mix together in a small bowl.  Set aside.

Now you need a large eggplant, chopped into small-ish pieces.  Chuck in a frypan and saute with a little bit of oil.  To stop it drying out, add a splash of water now and again.  You’re going to want to cook it for a while until….


…it goes shmushy.  Y’know, all soft and mushy and no longer holding its shape.  Shmushy.  Oh and while you’re doing that, blanch some broccoli florets in boiling water for about 3 minutes until it is tender but NOT shmushy.  I used about 400g broccoli for this.  Drain it and set aside while the eggplant is cooking.


Into a food processor, chuck the broccoli and eggplant, flax meal, five chopped spring onions (or you can use a small brown onion, chopped and sauteed with the eggplant), 200g of pine nuts, and about a cup of quick porridge oats.  I also added a little vege stock powder for seasoning and some smoked paprika.  Pulse in the processor, until it forms a sticky, combined blob. If it seems a little too sticky and wet, add some more oats or, if you’re not me, you could probably chuck in some besan (chickpea) flour.


Now, roll the mixture into little balls – about the size of a golf ball.  Place on a baking tray and sprinkle with a little more smoked paprika if desired.


Bake for 25 – 30 mins in a 180 C oven.  Turn halfway through cooking time so they’re golden on all sides.  They should be quite firm and crispy on the outside.


Serve with a nice tomato sauce (like you would regular meatballs).  Yum!

These balls freeze really well and are delicious cold as well as hot.  You can use them in place of mince in a “meatloaf” or burgers.  As I said, my recipe is not exact – just go by feel and taste.  The eggplant lends a nice meaty taste to the dish, but you could substitute everything else for something you prefer.  Eg grated carrot instead of broccoli, breadcrumbs instead of oats, etc.  And of course you could use egg instead of the flax, if you’re not vegan.  Anything goes here!  Just experiment a bit 🙂

Hope you give these a try and maybe invent your own version/recipe (using my crappy version as a blue-print).  This recipe makes enough for a whole family and has the added bonus of not looking like they contain vegies (so fuss-pots will eat them too).

Thank you for stopping by x



Brave : New Year Goals & Dreams

Can you believe it is a New Year’s AGAIN???  Where did 2017 go?  Actually, I don’t really care where it went – I just want it gone.  It was a pretty dreadful year.  Seems like everyone had it tough, in one way or another, and that the Universe was plotting against us by making kooky, crazy, scary and random things happen.  To be fair, the Universe does that all the time, but this year it seemed to just say “Ah, to hell with it!’ and just chucked everything it could at us.  Probably serves us right – maybe we needed some more wake up calls.  Especially me, I always sleep in 🙂

This was, until five seconds ago when I deleted all the text I’d spent ages typing, a very long post about my resolutions for the new year.  The usual stuff about losing weight, being more sociable, being a better housekeeper etc.  But I am actually feeling that those things are all part of the bigger picture of me just trying to be better than I am now.  And the majority of the things I want to change about myself all hinge on one thing, or my lack thereof : bravery.

I’m not very brave.  I am basically scared of everything.  In some ways, I guess that makes me braver than I think I am, because instead of curling up in my bed and staying there forever (which is what I really want to do pretty much every day lately), I get up and go out into the world.  Which is scary for me.  Always has been.  I don’t understand the world and it doesn’t understand me.

This week was hard.  I had to make decisions that were difficult and upsetting and made me feel horrible about myself and my judgements.  I don’t like hurting people, but this week I had to do that to someone who was hurting me.  And then it made me question whether or not they actually were hurting me, or if my fear and lack of courage was affecting my perception of the situation.  But I had to stand up for myself and that was hard.  I don’t do it often and it is not a comfortable feeling for me.  I am generally more at ease backing down or tolerating things, even if the other person is in the wrong.  So instead of feeling good about standing up for myself, I feel horribly sad and guilty and keep wondering if the other person is ok.

I had another situation where I had to be assertive (a man had left his dog in a hot car and he he did not take kindly to me suggesting that he move the car, or preferably the dog, into the shade) and it ended up with me in tears and, frankly, afraid that I was going to get punched in the face.  I did not feel victorious or proud of myself.  I felt scared and small and again questioned whether I was in the right.

I had to assert myself at work too – in front of a bunch of colleagues – and that was very difficult also.  Again, I was in the right, but it felt very wrong to stand there and say “Excuse me, but that is my responsibility I have to ask you to let me handle that”.  I ended up apologising to the person afterwards because I felt so rotten about it, even though I was only stating what was true and defending my own job.

So, if I am to pick one resolution for this year, it is to be brave.  And to stop apologising for having feelings and opinions and ideas of my own.  And to make the hard decisions when I have to, and stand by them.  And not let my fear of losing people stop me from standing up for myself and my own needs and values.  And, most importantly, to embrace change and not fear it.  I feel like this year is going to be a year of change and I have to be ready for that, one way or the other.

So, here’s to bravery and self-belief.  And to standing up for what you believe in.  And to not letting someone else tell you how you should live your life.

Thank you for reading – Happy New Year to you all.  May 2018 bless you with many wonderful experiences, and the courage to embrace them all.  Be kind to one another and yourselves this year.


That’s iced tea, by the way, not wine…