Thursday, May 31, 2012

Cheesy Muffins

I made these as an after school snack, and they disappeared so fast. They've even asked me to make more, so they must be good!!


1/4 pint sunflower oil
1 egg
284ml buttermilk, made up to 300ml with milk
1 lb 2 oz self raising flour
1 tsp English mustard powder
5 oz Cheddar grated
1 bunch spring onions, sliced
small bunch chives, snipped
1 oz Parmesan, grated
7 oz full fat soft cheese, cut into small cubes.


Preheat oven to 180C fan
Whisk oil egg and buttermilk until combined.
Add all the other ingredients and gently combine, do not over mix.
Fill the holes in a muffin tin with the mixture.
I lined mine with muffin cases first and made 16 in total, the cases need to be very full.
Bake for 25 minutes.

I forgot to take photos!!!

Announcing Serve It Series - Serve It - Raw

This month's theme for Serve It series is Serve It - Raw. Summer is in full swing everywhere and all we want to eat is something light, cool and that wouldn't weigh you down. We get a lot of fresh produce in spring and summer and I love to have salads as much as I can. Salads need not be something boring or unsatisfying as that is the commonly conceived notion. Adding little protein like eggs,

Water Heaters In Orange County

YES .. it's true. Each and EVERY water heater manufacturer will be increasing their costs here just before summer 2012!
What does that mean for you as the consumer???? Most likely any company selling or installing water heaters will be increasing their rates.
We at SPLASH Plumbing have done our best to "hold our prices" on water heaters for the last THREE years ..... that's right .... THREE years. Despite the fact that we have incured price increases we HAVE NOT passed this on to our clients.

Can the "HOME DEPOT" or "LOWE's" warehouses say that? How about the local franchise plumbing companies? I don't think so!

So what are we at SPLASH Plumbing going to do? To be quiet honest ... we are going to continue operating with the same positive ethical character as always ..... we here at SPLASH Plumbing are determined to exceed our clients expectations while offering competitive rates for ALL of our services.

If you would like to know more, simply feel free to contact us here in the office at 877-HEY-SPLASH or at the following local numbers:
North County 714-688-0804
South County 949-642-7900

Stairway window complete -  This window was in horrible shape.  We took the window out and had it repaired at BetterMade Cabinets.  The frame and sill was repaired and painted on site.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Italian Summer trifle

Trifle is quintessentially English. It's been around for about 400 years, but has evolved over time. Originally more of a fool it became what we now understand to be trifle in the Victorian era. They added the booze soaked cake and the fruit separately to the cream. Whether a trifle has jelly or not seems to be a matter of personal preference. I like mine without. In fact my perfect trifle is just how mum makes it; sherry soaked sponge a layer of fruit, followed by custard and topped with whipped cream. I was always the special dessert in our house, especially if she over did it on the sherry!!!

In the sunny weather we have had for the past week (no doubt it will stop next week while the kids are off school) I made some Limoncello, so here is my updated version of trifle. It encompasses those lovely summer flavours of lemon and fresh fruit, I've not used custard as I find it rather heavy and wanted to keep this light.


1 pack sponge fingers
250g mascapone
300ml double cream
summer fruit (I used raspberries and blueberries)
5 tbsp icing sugar


Soak the sponge fingers in the Limoncello.
Whisk the mascapone with the cream and icing sugar until thick

Layer half the sponge fingers in your bowl.
Add half the fruit.
Spread over half the cream mixture.
Repeat these three layers.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Wordless Wednesday

My silly face

Going #1 or #2 in 0 Gravity

Strap feet in. Position thigh restraints. Turn on vacuum and check for suction. You are now ready to “go” in space.

All of us have looked up at the stars in awe and wondered about life in space. We wonder what the earth looks like and how zero gravity feels but there might be one mystery that you’ve overlooked. What do the astronauts do when they have to… well “go”?

The final frontier couldn’t possibly be explored by humans if this problem was not solved. The solution wasn’t cheap. The International Space Station’s toilet cost around 18 million dollars! It’s not easy to use either. Astronauts have to go back to potty training. The “Positioning Trainer” prepares the astronauts for perhaps their most essential task.

Alignment is everything. The astronauts only have a 4 inch hole to work with compared to the average household toilets 12 to 18 inches. The “Positioning Trainer” provides the astronauts with a camera to make sure there aim is spot on. The astronauts need a lot of practice because there is no camera for them in the space. They must be careful going number 1 too fast because they definitely don’t want to flood the fan separator. No one wants to break the toilet in space. The call home to base might be a little awkward. “Houston we have a problem…”

The DIY Dreamer
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Bottom picture-Part stripping of paint, new window glaze added, and epoxy for the damaged wood.  Glaze needs to dry for 7-14 days and we will final sand and apply primer.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Vegetable Spring Rolls

I love cooking, and photographing what I have cooked. I have cooked many recipes these days and as a result the number of posts in my draft has increased and reached a threshold. It indicates that I need to post recipes at definite intervals. Don't you think so?

So now I have started to post recipes one-by-one from the Drafts section. I bring to your tables, a filling appetizer (Spring Rolls). I prepare spring rolls often either by baking or shallow frying. Only when I run out of time, I prefer the deep frying option. If you prefer to deep fry them, ensure that the oil is in correct temperature. Otherwise, this dish absorbs more oil and doesn't taste good.

Basic Information:

Preparation Time: 45-50 minutes

Cooking Time: 30 minutes

Makes: 10-12 spring rolls


Onion - 1/4 cup, finely chopped
Ginger - 1 inch length, minced
Garlic - 2 nos, minced
Cabbage - 3/4 cup, finely sliced
Capsicum/Bell peppers - 1/2 cup, finely sliced, any colour
Carrot - 1/2 cup, finely sliced
Mushrooms/Black Mushrooms - 1/2 cup, finely chopped
Soy Sauce - 1 tablespoon
Black pepper powder - 1 teaspoon, adjust as per taste
Salt - to taste
Spring Roll Sheets/Wrappers - 10-12
Oil - 3 tablespoons + for shallow/deep frying
Spring Onion - 5 nos
Water - 1/4 cup


1) In a pan, heat oil. When the oil is not smoking hot, add chopped onion and root part of the spring onion. Saute it for 3 minutes.

2) Add minced ginger and garlic. Fry for a minute till the aroma spreads in the kitchen.
3) Add the vegetables along with the top part of the spring onion. Toss well. You can also close the vegetables with a lid and cook them if preferred. It will take approx 10-15 minutes.

4) When the vegetables are almost cooked, add the chopped mushrooms. Cook again for 5 minutes or until the vegetables reduces to half of its original quantity.

5) Add soya sauce, pepper and salt as per the taste. Mix well.

6) Cook for few minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning as per the taste.
7) Now the vegetable stuffing is ready and allow this mixture to cool to room temperature.

8) Now lay the spring roll sheet in the kitchen surface. Refer the pictures for better understanding.

9) Brush the edges with water. Place 2-3 tablespoons of vegetable stuffing in the bottom half of the spring roll wrapper. Spread it like a cylindrical shape and make sure it is not touching the edges of the wrappers.

10) Lift the bottom corner of the wrapper and tuck it in under the vegetable stuffing.

11) Fold over the left and right side of the wrapper towards inside.
12) Continue rolling the wrapper. When you reach the other edge of the wrapper, brush the top corner with water and seal it well.

13) Repeat this steps for remaining spring roll sheets or till the vegetable stuffing gets over.
14) Now, Heat oil in the deep pan. When it is not smoking hot, add the spring rolls slowly in the oil and carefully fry them until they turn golden brown. Instead of deep frying you can even shallow fry them with a small quantity of oil. But this method takes slightly longer time than deep frying but its more healthy. You can also bake these rolls. Bake them in 220C/425F for 25-30 minutes in a preheated oven.

15) Remove the rolls and drain them using tissues to absorb any excess oil.
16) Serve the rolls warm with a sauce of your choice.

1) You can add sprouted moong beans and bamboo shoots for variations.
2) Increase or decrease the soya sauce, pepper and salt quantity as per taste.
3) Add sugar if preferred.
4) Make sure to seal the edges of the sheet properly. Otherwise the stuffing comes out while frying.

5) Shallow fried or Baked spring rolls will not give golden colour as we get while deep frying.

Saturday Baking Club Cherry Oaties

This is a lovely recipe and a lovely, tasty cake! It's from Good Food magazine.


5 oz butter
4 oz self raising flour
6 oz caster sugar
6 oz porridge oats
1 egg
4 oz glacé cherries
1 oz dark chocolate


Preheat oven to 160C fan.

Line a 22cm tin with baking paper.

Mix flour sugar and oats in a large bowl.

Add beaten egg, melted butter and cherries, mix well.

Put into tin and spread out evenly.

Bake for 20-25 minutes.
Cool in the tin.
Remove from tin, melt chocolate. 

Drizzle chocolate over the top of the cake.

Cut into 16  pieces.

I find that the easiest and neatest way to drizzle chocolate is by making a piping bag out of grease proof paper like here