Just like whipped cream!

Yup, that’s right. If I could take in dairy (not at the moment thanks to my restricted diet although I’m slowly introducing dairy but in the form of cheese first and goat’s cheese), I would eat my own body butters.

I ran out of Noah’s avocado butter and since the argan and rosehip oil yielded promising results, I decided to add some to the original recipe. I also changed the way I whipped the oils.

The end result is a softer, easier to spread butter which, I find, to be quite airy and frothy. I also ended up with extra three 50ml jars of butter on top of the two 100ml jars that I filled up. The extras have been put up for sale and surprisingly, sold out nearly instantly! Happiness!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

Enrich Body Butter: A look at the texture

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Chilli Con Carne

Chilli Con Carne

No recipe here; not because I’ve been busy with reviews but simply because I’m still experimenting and am not exactly happy with the flavours. Suffice to say, it is delicious but lacks that kick. There are, of course, red beans and minced beef but to make use of whatever vegetables that were about to die, I added in things like mushrooms, tomato and replaced chilli powder with Tabasco sauce, cumin powder with cumin grains and tomato puree with ketchup.

This stew is fab on its own but is excellent – I find – with rice, pasta and even polenta. I reckon I’ll make this a little thicker and cook it longer to really get the lovely flavour. Not that anyone was complaining. Eva who usually doesn’t really fancy beans ate a lot of this even the beans! YAY!

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When you buy…

When You Buy...

This has been circulating around the Internet, particularly over Facebook, so I thought to adapt it a little and share with you what happens with the money I receive from the shop. Location isn’t important as the yarn store and this one pays for the same things.

I must be honest – the soap store is a part-time business which I foresee to be a side thing as I would still like to get back to my yarn & fiber business which is a first love of mine.

Still, the money – whatever small amounts – received is always wisely used. It goes into not just updating the stock of raw ingredients like shea, cocoa and mango butter as well as luxury oils like kukui, avocado, etc, but also towards other things like packaging for the store, web and photo hosting (someone suggested joomla web hosting to replace my current one) books for Eva, clothes for Noah, a foodie treat or two for myself and the hubs.

Small businesses, or rather MY small business, isn’t aimed for making a profit but more at funding a passion. So the next time you check out a small business of any sort, particularly that of a stay-at-home-mum, think of the people who will “profit” from it.

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Knit: Citron

Citron off the block!

Citron
Pattern | Citron by Hilary Smith Callis
Yarn | Simple Scarves Silk-Wool Laceweight in Electric Blue
Needles | 4.5 mm circulars & 4 mm crochet hook

This was a simple knit – knit, purl with plenty of increases and decreases to get the ruffles. I made a crochet edging to finish off the shawl and instead of the recommended number of repeats (five), I made seven (or was it six?) repeats, resulting in long tedious nights of stockinette stitches and mindless knitting in front of the TV/laptop.

Blocking this was a challenge – I think I overblocked towards the bottom of the shawl which resulted in the last section of ruffles disappearing. I’ll have to keep in mind not to do the same the next time I put this in the wash.

Other than that, I’m loving the yarn and colour despite how “noisy” it seems. It’ll go perfectly well with solid tops or dresses – I can see it being showed off prettily on a simple black number. The silk in the yarn gives it an added shine and like my Jaali, I cannot stop molesting it. If I were to ever go back to dyeing, this would be one yarn base that I would hold onto simply because it’s amazing to knit with!

Now that I’ve cleared this, I’ll be gearing up for a cardigan KAL as well as the upcoming Ravelympics 2012 (and more reviews on medical scrubs)! I don’t know what possessed me to sign up for a KAL (Knit-A-Long) and the Ravelympics but hey, I figured I might as well hang onto my knitting mojo while I still have it! Hehehe.

Citron off the block!

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Avocado-Mango Skin Relief Butter

Avocado-Mango Skin Relief Butter

Avocado-Mango Skin Relief Butter
Contents | Avocado Butter and Oil (Persea gratissima), Mango Butter (Mangifera indica), Vitamin E (Tocopherol).

After nearly two weeks of testing ingredients, I can finally whip up a butter for Noah. I have been doing patch tests for avocado oil and mango butter on his arm and leg. (Avocado butter is essentially the same as the oil except the difference in fluidity and physical state.) The results have been promising so far so time to get cracking on the butter (I have been busy looking at things like how to repair leather furniture – don’t ask!).

I chose avocado oil and butter because its high content in Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids which are lacking in most people suffering from eczema. It is also high in sterolins which can help heal, soften and moisturise skin. The butter is extremely rich but easily absorbed, making it a good night cream – something which Noah really needs as he often wakes up with flakey, slightly dry skin.

Because this butter is very soft at room temperature, I needed a harder butter to stiffen the cream up and picked mango instead of the usual cocoa and shea butter. Noah appears to be allergic to nuts so shea is out and I didn’t dare chance cocoa since I have yet to test it out. I settled for mango instead after reading that it has been traditionally used for its skin softening, soothing, moisturizing and protective properties. It can also help restore flexibility and reduce degeneration of skin cells AND has UV protection properties!

No fragrances or anything fancy – so the butter pretty much smells like avocado. Quite vegetably and not at all unpleasant, if you ask me. I intend to start him on this tomorrow and hope that his skin will get better in time! *keeps fingers crossed*

Cold pressed avocado oil Melting the avocado and mango butter Whipping everything together

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Scenes from Paris

We dropped by Nil’s uncle’s place in Paris recently for the weekend and did the whole tourist thing (I chucked my knitting aside), except that we just settled for the Albert Kahn Musuem & Gardens, a boat ride along the river Seine and a visit to the National Museum of Natural History. I fell in love instantly with the last place we visited – the menagerie and gardens were simply amazing to say the least and it was also the place when I went trigger happy with the camera. Here are some of the pictures from the trip…

Along the river Seine – it wasn’t a really great day. Rainy, cold…

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At the National Museum of Natural History

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All in all, a very nice day!

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Banana Loaf (Vegan & Gluten Free)

Banana Loaf (Vegan & Gluten Free)

Vegan and gluten-free baking is a real pain challenge.

I followed the recipe (here) to the T except for the change in the eggs (I used egg replacer) and oil (I used olive oil) and instead of the nice fluffy texture which was promised, I got a texture that was similar to my tapioca cake which is pretty much like an Asian kueh. I suspect it is the use of tapioca flour.

While Nil and Eva loved it – I reckon it was the bananas that did the trick – I didn’t. I reckon I would have an easier time assembling a TV wall mount than trying to figure out what went wrong where. Needless to say, I wouldn’t be attempting this again unless I was using a pre-made mix of gluten-free flour.

The trouble is what shall I do with all that gluten-free flour and egg replacer? (Nil is starting to complain – “You have enough flour to last us till next year!” Geh!)

Hm, make more cakes and muffins, I suppose. Heh.

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Getting quiet…

It’s not that I have nothing to share.

I have plenty! Recipes, soaps, pictures, trips, what-nots…

It’s just that I can’t seem to find the time to put things together. Every time I sit down and get ready to talk about the latest, someone somewhere needs me. And when things finally die down, I forget what I wanted to share.

It’s a sign, a blinking led if you will.

I’m getting old.

I’m getting tired.

I’m in need of a vacation.

Bleck.

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