Mexican night

Every time my family have Mexican and movie night I think of the lady in Sydney who hosted Mexican night and Oprah surprised visited! We just love that good food, and it creates good conversation and memories. I hope you have a great Friday night too! Xo

Mexican night

vanilla birthday cake with caramel frosting

My son loves caramel, and is all about the texture of cake, so this is what I made for his birthday. The frosting is quite sweet, but the cake balances it out. It is scrumptious!

Cake ingredients

180 g butter

1 cup brown sugar

2 eggs

2 tsp vanilla pod scrapings or essence

2 cups self-raising flour

½ cup milk


Frosting ingredients

125 g butter

1 cup brown sugar

80ml milk

1 ½ cups icing powder



With an electric mixer beat the butter and sugar until well combined. Then add the eggs one at a time, beating in between additions. Add the flour, essence and milk. Keep beating and the mixture will increase in volume and be smooth. Grease a cake tin and spoon the mix into the tin. Bake at 180 degrees Celsius for about 45 minutes.

Place the butter and brown sugar together in a saucepan on low heat. Once combined add the milk and icing powder. Stir until no lumps are evident, then take off the heat and cool down.

Once the cake has cooled down (a couple of hours later) spoon the icing onto the middle of the cake and gently push in a round circle to the edge. The icing will fall down the cake, here mine is a little runny because I didn’t measure the butter too well and it was 38 degrees here in Queensland that day! Add whatever fruits the birthday boy/girl likes and serve immediately!

This cake has a great crumb, and the caramel icing is sweet, creating a great family cake for any occasion!

vanilla birthday cake with caramel frosting

Roast balsamic and garlic beef

My family love roast, and it is so versatile that I do one almost every week. I cook a large one for the night of a roast dinner and veg/salad, and then the following day I use the leftover meat on a homemade pizza or serve with Turkish pide and side dishes, really whatever the weather gets us in the mood for! Try this lovely roast beef, it is beautiful!


A leg of beef

1 lemon, halved

Handful of rosemary and thyme

Salt and pepper

10 garlic cloves

2 tbs balsamic glaze

Drizzle of olive oil



Open the garlic cloves to expose the skin. Place the rosemary and thyme with the garlic cloves on the base of a roasting dish. Add half a cup of water. Place the beef onto the herbs with a couple of garlic cloves underneath, but most to the side of the beef. Squeeze the lemon over the beef and leave the lemon halves in the dish. Drizzle the beef with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and rub into the beef. Drizzle with balsamic glaze back and forth. Crack pepper over the top. My family like our beef with no pink, so I cook a 1.5 Kg leg for 2 hours at 160 degrees Celsius. If you like it pink, check at the hour and 20 minute mark. After an hour in the oven view to see if there is any water in the dish still, and if not pour ¼ cup into the bottom of the dish. This keeps the beef moist and allows the herbs and garlic to infuse with the meat. This is so simple, but just mouth-watering! Enjoy!


Roast balsamic and garlic beef