March 31, 2009


Thinking about the baked goods masterpieces at the Easter Show reminded me of my mother’s cupcakes.

Enough to make you drool, and though these ones were made for Chrismukkah last year, I tend to think they would also do well at an Easter Sunday lunch.

Very colourful, festive and isn't this picture of them just too Martha Stewart Living?

Speaking of the Divine Ms. Stewart, peace be upon Her, she just about wrote the damn book on cupcakes so get thee to the kitchen with a few of these recipes that will have everyone's mouth watering at Easter.

I am of the rather daggy opinion that cupcakes simply taste better if displayed on a stand. I know, yawn, it’s such a dull take on things I almost fell asleep just typing it. But I’ll stand by this one. And because I love you all, I have a quick DIY Cakestand for those (I imagine the vast majority?) who don’t happen to have a stand kicking about.


You Will Need:

  • Cake boards: 1×8″, 1×10″, 1×12″
  • Polystyrene cake dummies 2″ high: 2X5″ and 2×6″
  • Satin ribbon for the cake board and the polystyrene cake dummies
  • Wrapping paper (pick a cute, Easter-y design.)
  • Glue stick and regular craft glue
  • Sharp scissor
  • Pencil
  • Metal Pins
Step 1:
Glue the dummies together with craft glue and leave to dry completely.

Step 2:
When the dummies are dry, glue the ribbon to the dummies with craft glue. The easiest way to do this is to apply glue around the surface of the dummy. Then pin one end of the ribbon and start wrapping the ribbon firmly around so it slightly overlaps, right to the other end and pin it there as well.

Step 3:

Lay the cake boards on the wrapping paper and trace around the outline of the boards. Cut out the circle neatly with your scissors.

Step 4:

Thoroughly coat the boards with the glue stick and paste on the wrapping paper circles.

Step 5:

Secure a ribbon to the side edge of the board, dab some craft glue around the board and wrap it around to overlap the edge and re-pin in place.

Step 6:

Assemble the tiers on-top of each other. You can glue them together for extra security.

Ta da! Looks fabulous and, really, just is too easy and too cute not to do.

This tutorial was based on one from Cake so check it out for more ideas.

March 30, 2009

Experts Guide to DIY Easter Show.

I just love Easter-time in Sydney.

I come from a long line of Sydney Royal Easter Show fanatics and feel the beginning tingles of anticipation when the evenings begin to bring a sharp chill and the days are shorter.

Dagwood dogs, my friends, are not a favourite of mine, but I have witnessed a record eating of 5 in one day.

So, to kick off my mounting excitement to Easter (even though I’m far from home at the moment) here is my, Experts Guide to DIY Easter Show.

  1. Buy a fresh fruit salad and take your time checking out the agricultural displays in the Fruit & Veg Pavillion.
  2. Sample the chilli jams and sauces in the Food Pavillion – but bring a bottle of water with you – they are crazy hot!
  3. Check out the awesome cake decorating and be inspired for the next one you whip up.
  4. Watch the wood chopping. You’ll be surprised at how thrilling you find it and, while the landed gentry can be rather uppity in their Laura Ashley heavyweight cotton shirts and big hats, they don’t mind at all if you bellow your opinions along with the other yahoos.
  5. Follow strange noises (one year I followed the sounds of cheers to stumble upon a rodeo, once a semi-professional boxing match, once an impromptu open karaoke stage for Easter Show Idol... you never know what you might find!)
  6. Walk around the Showbag Pavilion, decide it’s all crap, and then buy the Darrel Lea Pig Out Bag anyway.
  7. Wine taste for free to give you a little Easter Show buzz (but the oyster bar always looks suss to me so nibble on those spicy nuts they have instead.)
  8. Go to the Dairy Farmers Farmyard Nursery. It’s just too much fun, if you have kids, little sisters, brothers, nieces, nephews with you – all the better – but not necessary. Airey and I easily killed an hour here last year fantasizing about stealing a chick to take home and adopting lambs that sat on out laps as we channelled St Francis Assisi on hay bales. Fun, trust me.
  9. Go nuts in Sideshow Alley. Yes, it’s an outrageous rip-off but there’s nothing like the sense of accomplishment when you win yourself an styrofoam-stuffed, oversized trophy (and ladies, I won’t pretend, the carnies will respond to a little friendly flirting.) Dare yourself do go on the scariest ride you can find. I was seriously doubting the strength of my pelvic floor last year, as I tried to hold a bladder that I feared would let me down while waiting to go on some nightmare of a ride. While I was making myself sick with fear, Airey was gleefully waiting on the safety of the ground, waving and taking pics of me.
  10. Watch the evening spectacular in the arena. I am a bit of a snob when it comes to this one. I have member’s tickets and my family does like to dine in the members club overlooking the evening show. But really, nothing beats being out in the stands with some greasy hot chips and your mates, watching the patriotic efforts of Bluey the faithful dog, or the drover with his whip cracking, the speed demons in cars and on motorbikes and smelling the sulphuric delights of a cracking fireworks show.

Ahhh. Yep, I’m going to miss it a lot this April.

But, if you don't have to miss out, go!!