October 9, 2016

chai time.

after a few scorching weeks here in holland, the temperature has finally dropped. the happy socks and heating are on and i'm craving EVERY kind of soup. the leaves are falling, the mornings are darker and we're slowly working our way through jamie's comfort food recipes. autumn in holland is just magical. donna hay's chai bundt recipe has been on my to do list for a while and i've been eager to christen my new nordicware pan so i decided a chilly sunday was the perfect time to play. to accompany the cake, i whipped up a large saucepan of chai tea concentrate and oh boy, they're a match made in heaven. perfectly spicy and sweetened to taste with honey and milk. both recipes can be found below. on another note, it's been way too long since i was last here. it's time to get back on the blogging bandwagon and share some of my recent bakes. i've been so inspired by donna hay's new book basics to brilliance and Poh Ling Yeow's series poh & co that has finally aired on 24 kitchen here in holland. expect a few familiar bakes in the near future. have a great week lovelies!




  1. Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F). Place the chai and water in a small bowl and mix to combine. 
  2. Place the flour, sugar, mixed spice, eggs, milk, butter, vanilla and tea mixture in a large bowl and whisk until smooth. 
  3. Pour into a well-greased 3-litre-capacity bundt tin and cook for 30–35 minutes or until cooked when tested with a skewer. 
  4. Invert onto a wire rack and allow to cool for 10 minutes in the tin. Gently lift off the tin and allow to cool completely before serving. Serves 8–10.  
  5. To make a cinnamon drizzle, mix 2 tablespoons of milk, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon and 1 cup of icing sugar together and pour over the cooled cake.
recipe courtesy of donna hay. 



  • 12 cardamom pods, gently crushed
  • 8 whole black peppercorns
  • 8 whole cloves
  • 4-inch piece of fresh ginger, sliced
  • 4 cups water
  • 4 cinnamon sticks
  • 3 whole allspice (optional)
  • 2 Tbsp. brown sugar (more or less to taste)
  • 2 star anise
  • 1 vanilla bean, sliced down the middle
  • 1/8 tsp. nutmeg
  • 4 black tea bags

Bring all ingredients except tea bags together to a boil in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes. Add tea bags and let steep for 5 minutes. Pour mixture through a strainer and reserve the liquid for concentrate, and let cool to room temperature.
Mix equal parts concentrate with water or milk to make chai tea. Or refrigerate in an airtight container for up to one week.

recipe courtesy of gimmesomeoven.com

February 21, 2016

melting moments.

these biscuits literally melt in your mouth. the passionfruit filling makes this afternoon treat (or post brekkie snack if you live in my house) irresistible and the texture is like biting into pure joy. super easy to make and the gluten free version is also a winner. enjoy!


Passionfruit filling

Step 1. Preheat oven to 160°C. Line 2 baking trays with non-stick baking paper

Step 2. Using an electric mixer, cream butter, vanilla and icing sugar until light and fluffy. Sift flours over butter mixture. Beat on low speed until a soft dough forms.

Step 3. Roll heaped teaspoonfuls of mixture into small balls. Place on trays. Using a fork dipped in flour, lightly flatten each biscuit until 1cm thick. Bake for 15 minutes or until firm. Cool on trays for 10 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Step 4. Make passionfruit filling: Using an electric stand/hand mixer, beat butter until light and fluffy. Stir in passionfruit pulp and icing sugar.

Step 5. Spread flat side of 1 biscuit with 1 teaspoon filling. Top with another biscuit. Repeat with remaining biscuits and filling. Dust with icing sugar and serve with a cup of tea!

January 23, 2016

dream job.

In 2013 I met my dream guy (you know the story) and in 2014 I moved to Holland to be with my dream guy. In the final few months of 2015 I landed my dream job! It came as a complete surprise as the idea of trying to land an English speaking job, in my creative field, in Holland, whilst working 5 days a week in an office was never a hopeful one so you can imagine the excitement when Holland's best wedding cake studio (2 years running) offered me a job as a cake artist (two of my favourite words!) I am beyond excited about working with an incredibly talented team and learning everything they can share with me. I look forward to sharing my baking adventures with you but for now, why not head over to @sugarlipscakes on instagram and drool over the incredible creations that will make you want to skip breakfast, lunch and dinner. Below are a few projects I've been working on together with the team at SL for the past few weeks. Thank you to my loyal IG & blog followers for your ongoing support and here's to a delicious 2016. x

all of these beautiful photos belong to and were taken by Sugarlips Cakes. pretty please do not use them without permission. thanks!

September 13, 2015

what a load of betty crock(er)...

I've been cheating on you guys with my oven. I've been so busy whipping up some new recipes and revisiting a bunch of favourite ones that I totally neglected/was too busy eating it all to share them with you. I recently went through a bit of a brownie bake off sesh experimenting with some fun ingredients that include bacon, Baileys, Ferrero Rocher and cookie dough to name a few. Buttered popcorn cookies, the best chocolate cupcakes ever and nutella sandwiched oreos also feature below. I made myself some indulgent birthday scrolls, whipped up a cat cake covered in salted caramel buttercream & filled with smarties for a favourite feline loving friend and played around with a traditional rocky road recipe by adding one of the nation's favourite baked goods, the stroopwafel. Next weekend i'm baking up some cookies inspired by one of my favourite fabric designers...could you possibly (think giant poppies) guess who?

note for the blog title: i don't have a problem with betty crocker cake mixes (i used them every day in 2006) so won't judge those who do - unless you're donna hay.

turtle krispie slice. think rice krispies caught in a marshmallow bath topped with more than the recommended amount of chocolate chip, pecan and caramel conditioner. god bless america. 
baileys cheesecake brownie. why didn't i make this sooner? (oh that's right, i drank all the baileys).

oreo & nutella brownie bites. after the recipe asked me to sandwich two oreos together with nutella i knew it was time to join the gym.
nectarine & blueberry buckwheat cake. i thought i should throw in SOME fruit amongst all this chocolate?!

strawberry cupcakes with fresh strawberry buttercream.  possibly the sweetest cupcakes i have ever made and by sweet i mean teeth falling out never going to trust martha stewart's sugar content in recipes again kinda sweet. 

zeeland cherry spiked blondie. what does one do with a box of zeeland's finest cherries? (see above for answer)

guinness chocolate cupcakes with homemade salted caramel popcorn. baked for a cute colleague and guaranteed to sweeten any working day!

gluten free banana bread. the best, fact. if eaten for breakfast, don't expect to feel hungry until about 6pm. 

pineapple & raspberry frangipane slice. i had two pineapples leftover from a photoshoot so decided to bake this. best decision i made all month. 

pizza birthday cake. i made this for my boyfriend's 35th birthday. i know, i'm a keeper. 

abbey rocky road. it was one of those weeks when all i was listening to were the beatles and everything i made was inspired by their lyrics. cute huh?

ferrero rocher brownie. no explanation needed. 

cookie dough brownie. are you sensing a decadent theme here?

the best ever chocolate cupcakes. like i wasn't going to test that theory. tried and tested and completely true. 

bacon brownies. because, why not?!

buttered popcorn cookies. fun and a total party pleaser, even if you are 35. 

dirty chocolate & espresso cinnamon scrolls. a firm favourite and if my metabolism could cope, a daily breakfast choice. 

stroopwafel, white chocolate, speculaas spread, hazelnut and marshmallow rocky road. i'm not sure what ISN'T in this thing. 

cake batter cinnamon scrolls. because everyday can be your birthday!!

fully dressed cake batter cinnamon scrolls. served warm and covered in sprinkles....i know. 

nutella & sea salt fudge. seriously, just because. 

August 9, 2015

marrakech (city of my dreams).

Back in March I made my way to Marrakech to meet up and explore the city for a few days with two of my favourite ladies. I arrived there nervous about food poisoning, spending too much money (I wasn't born to haggle) and not obeying local customs and appearing rude. I left four days later with a mind blown with pastel colour, a new appreciation for Moroccan mint tea (which we drank at every opportunity) and a tummy full of cous cous. I have never been so pleasantly surprised or inspired by a city. I often dream of wandering the souks laden with spices, rugs and teapots which makes me even more eager to return there one day soon. It has only taken me 5 months to write a post about my experience as I truly believe that words cannot do this city justice. You'll have to go and see for yourself! 

The places we went and where we stayed are listed below.

Our riad (Dar Al Kounouz) had moroccan tea available on demand morning, noon and night. Only a few minutes walk from the centre of the medina, I would recommend this place to anyone.

Peach and mint, a match made in heaven 

The combination of tiles, stone carving and peach made me not want to leave.

Blue skies and peach walls for days.

The Koutoubia mosque was not only one of the most beautiful buildings we saw but it was a point of reference to help us get around the city (and most importantly back to our riad).

Vintage fabric adorned the street stalls.

I was never scared wandering the quiet alleyways in this city. 

Happy faces on peachy buildings made me soooo happy. 

Tassels, tassels, everywhere. 

I was in homewares heaven. 

The incredible Ben Youssef mosque.

Kittens around every corner. 

I wanted ALL of the rugs.

Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé bought the Jardin Majorelle in 1980 and saved it from falling victim to a real estate project and becoming a hotel complex. Today it is a cobalt blue oasis with gardens full of incredible cactus.

The best orange juice I have ever tasted. So many vendors to choose from and the stall holders will charm the pants off you for your business. (We rather enjoyed it.)

Cobalt blue magic at Jardin Majorelle.

Stalls are open around the clock. 

The patterns...

A corner of the beautiful Bahia palace. 

Seriously guys...the tiles.

Peach wall!

Treasure troves in every alley.

Jardin Majorelle beauty.

Now forever my favourite colours. 

Everywhere you look...

Cous cous for every meal.

Lunching on a roof terrace with my ladies. (I ordered cous cous).

Peach ombre effect anyone?!

Spices piled high.

The view as we left our riad.

The beautiful Bahia Palace.

Rugs, everywhere.

We stumbled across Dar Cherifa, a light and airy literary cafe hidden from passers-by.

Can't stop, won't stop.

I was close to hugging this wall. 

Door details to pine over.

Ben Youssef in all its glory.

The bustling Jemaa el-Fnaa (market square).

Make sure you empty all of the photos off your iphone/memory card before you go...

My kind of golden arches.

The weather. I know. 

Peach and mint green should ALWAYS be seen.

Inside of our beautiful Riad. Our hosts Youseff and Zach couldn't have been more welcoming.

Our roof terrace adorned with my favourite colour combo.

Moroccan pineapples. An image that will inspire many future artworks/interiors/dreams.