I Hate Silicone Cake Tins

(Whine wine: Fernway Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough – nice, albeit a touch more herbal than I prefer)


Anti-stick my foot! Never, ever trust in the supposed releasing magic of silicone tins, for it does not exist. You still have to butter & flour the tin if you wish to get your cake out of it. As an added aggrevating bonus, if your cake does stick to the silicone tin, there is no way, no way at all, you can get it out in one piece. With your trusty old metal tin, you could try the cold towel trick, and in most cases it would actually work. Nothing can be done to save a cake that has become stuck to a silicone tin: you can forget about pretty cake slices and start planning a trifle.


Silicone tins are also bendy and twisty: this means that they only work with very sturdy baked goods anyway. A delicate cake is going to start going to pieces when you try and invert the useless, spineless mould, because it won’t hold its shape. Oh, and let’s not forget that you must always place the tins on a cookie sheet, for the very same reason. How handy.


Unless you only and exclusively bake very hard bread, the only thing silicone tins have going for them is the fact that they don’t go ”clangggg!!” when you put them in the cupboard.



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Margarita Pies

Margarita PieNo-bake nomness – with alcohol! Whee… Recipe adapted from; makes 16 cupcakes (or one 9″ pie, if you’re so inclined).










Miniature Margarita Pies



1 cup digestive biscuit crumbs (about 8 biscuits)

2 tbls sugar

5 tbls melted butter


1 (398 g) can sweetened condensed milk

40 ml Triple Sec or Cointreau

40 ml tequila

¼ cup fresh lime juice

2 cups heavy cream , whipped

green food colouring (optional)


Line muffin pans with paper muffin cups (the American style, as always).

Combine the crust ingredients and press into the muffin cups. Use a little less butter than you think you need; the crust should be a bit crumbly. This is because the pies are frozen, and if you use plenty of butter you will end up with crusts that are rock hard and all but unbreakable. ;-)

Combine filling ingredients. Add a few drops of food colouring at a time (and mix) until the batter is tinted a gentle minty green.

Cover cupcakes and freeze for 4-5 hours or overnight.

Garnish with whipped cream, lime slices, mint leaves, and other pretty things. Let stand at room temperature for about 15 minutes before digging in.

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The Curious Bucket

Last Saturday, I was sitting in a bus on my way to the city centre. A woman got on the bus, carrying a handbag and a bucket. A bucket. It’s March, so she clearly couldn’t be planning to go berry picking. For a moment I figured she had just bought the bucket (who doesn’t need a bucket?) and was on her way home, but it was before 9 am and the shops weren’t open yet. So, what?


Some theories:

Friend: ”Hey, I’m spring cleaning this Saturday, come and help out! It’s BYOB, bring your own bucket!”

An ultra-modern fashion statement: instead of a boring old tote bag, she decided to put her groceries in a way cool bucket.

Perhaps there is a source for some super fresh milk somewhere in town.


It was interesting. Whatever the reason for the bucket, I hope she did not intend to kick it. Oh harity-har.

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Mud Cupcakes

Mud Cupcake



Another one of my serving size solutions: I’ve had a hankering for some seriously rich chocolate cake but am unfortunately all too capable of eating a whole cake by myself in a matter of days. Which would be immensely enjoyable but very, very naughty. Hence, another cupcake rendition of an old classic – mudcake! Makes 24 decadent cupcakes.





Mud Cupcakes


250g butter

200g dark eating chocolate (will try 60% cocoa solids next time)

400 g soft brown sugar (scant 2 cups, firmly packed)

1 1/3 cups milk

1 ts vanilla extract

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 ts baking powder

1/8 ts baking soda

1 pinch salt

1/4 cup cocoa powder

2 eggs


Preheat oven 150°C. Line two muffin tins with paper cases.

Combine chopped butter, chopped chocolate, sugar, milk and vanilla extract in a saucepan. Stir over low heat until smooth.

Transfer mixture to a large bowl and let cool for 15 minutes.

Sift together flour, baking powder and soda, salt and cocoa powder. Whisk in the sifted flour mixture.

Add eggs, mix until just combined.

Pour mixture into paper cases. (You can fill them quite generously, as the cupcakes don’t rise all that much.) Bake for about 20 minutes, or until the tops just begin to look dry. Do not overbake. Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack.


I adapted the recipe from The Australian Women’s Weekly, whose muffin tins are apparently a lot bigger than mine, since their recipe makes 12 cupcakes.

These are quite rich, so I prefer to top them with plain whipped cream – but if double richness is your thang, go with chocolate ganache or buttercream, (see AWW link above). Or both. :-)

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