Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Kenwood's Intro to Baking Class with Curry's - #CurrysintheKitchen

Curry's PC World, Kenwood, kMix

Haha yes! Although I'm not really a baking newbie, I'm not really good with my creations. There are so much that I don't know or am uncertain about, how could I let this amazing opportunity, to learn from the professionals at Kenwood's "Intro to Baking" class (brought to us by Curry's), go?

I was even more excited after the lovely PR told me that the class will cover Tart and Swiss Roll, because they were (not anymore!) one of my weaknesses. Plus a bonus tip for tempering chocolate that I couldn't get a consistent result, and an easy meringue that I can do with kids? It was like a tailor made course for me!

The day started with me panicking in the car because the traffic was really bad and I was half an hour late instead of 15 minutes early as planned! I was so glad that I didn't miss much, and just caught Sarah from Wilmslow Kitchen Cookery School making French Meringue in time *phew*

Curry's PC World, Kenwood, kMix
Sarah from Wilmslow Kitchen Cookery School demonstrating how to make French Meringue
Curry's PC World, Kenwood, kMix
Left: Sarah Making the Chocolate Tart base, using the famous Kenwood's K Beater
Right: kMix featuring their glass bowl. It's so much easier to see what's going on inside the bowl!
Curry's PC World, Kenwood, kMix
Our work stations (our table is the one on the right of this)
Curry's PC World, Kenwood, kMix
My lovely partner Sarah working on the tart base!
We worked in teams of twos, and I was glad to have met and partnered with the lovely Sarah from Let them be Small. We were stuck in the same traffic and she was about 10 minutes in front of us. She was a great partner to have!

During our class, we got to try out Kenwood's kMix. It was very efficient and easy to use. The stand was sturdy (unlike my old one that kept running off the table!) and fairly quiet (although with about 15 of them running together at maximum speed we had to turn them off just to hear Sarah speak!).

It's the first time I got to try the famous K beater out too (I have heard soo much about it!) and it whipped the butter and sugar together in no time with minimum stuck on the beater. Thumbs up from moi! The kMix stand mixer really make life much easier because we can get on with other things while it does the beating for us, and it whipped the egg up to double the volume (more like triple!) in no time! The kMix glass bowl Sarah (our teacher Sarah hehe) used to demonstrate is a must have to me because you get to see what's going on inside the bowl, making judgments (when it is ready) so much easier!

Curry's PC World, Kenwood, kMix
French Meringue. Consistency is like a soft marshmallow, so needs drying out in the oven after
Left is by Sarah, right is our team's
Curry's PC World, Kenwood, kMix
Little Raspberry Meringue men? Looks festive enough for Christmas!
Curry's PC World, Kenwood, kMix
Strawberry and Cream Swiss Roll *swoon*
Curry's PC World, Kenwood, kMix
Double Yolk Shots for the gorgeous Chocolate Tart filling
Curry's PC World, Kenwood, kMix
Basic chocolate knowledge and tempered chocolate decoration.
Left: Immediately spotted Cacao Nibs (cup on the right) because I've been eating that with my breakfast almost every day!
Cacao butter was new to me and I was fascinated by it!
I couldn't believe that I can make such a beautiful tart and Swiss roll! The insider tips Wilmslow Kitchen Cookery School has shared with us really make a difference, and now I'm not scared of making them anymore (It was good to know that I wasn't the only one! Everyone clapped when Sarah rolled her Swiss roll up, then we were told that the kids group never clapped and just got on with it haha! #NoFear).

I also love the French Meringue technique over the Italian one, which is what I always use, but boiling syrup to a certain degree, then pouring it over spinning egg white can be a messy business (you definitely need a stand mixer for that!). I wonder whether I can use the French Meringue technique for making Macarons? Haven't read about it. I must investigate further!

While we were waiting for the tarts to bake, Sarah showed us how to temper chocolate without the need of bringing the chocolate temperature up and down and up again (to get the chocolate crystals to its most stable form to make the chocolate shiny that breaks with a snap). It's so so easy! I'll be making more chocolate decorations from now on and get back to making moulded chocolates (chocolates with fillings)!

Curry's PC World, Kenwood, kMix
Surprise goodie bag! Isn't the kMix keyring adorable?!
Curry's PC World, Kenwood, kMix
Time to retire my old Kenwood mixer! Loving my new kMix handheld!
At the end of the class, Kenwood has surprised us with a goodie bag each! Thank you so much for everything, especially my handheld kMix (my old Kenwood handheld can finally retire)!

The kMix is so good looking! I absolutely love the design and the stand that hold the mixer, which has a slot for each whisk and hook! Oh and no more twisting cable snaking around, it is being kept neatly at the base of the mixer! If I don't have to get ready for our holiday trip, I'd have started on a few baking projects already to test this beauty out!

I want to thank the lovely Joe Blogs Network (thank you for inviting me, all your events are amazing and this is absolutely my favourite!), Kenwood, Curry's, and everyone from Wilmslow Kitchen Cookery School (you are all so nice, patient and helpful, thank you!) again for such a fantastic baking class. I can't believe how much I've learned in 4 hours!

My family will be sick of tarts soon haha!

You can find the recipes here on Curry's website!

Thursday, 30 July 2015

LEGO Technic - Mercedes-Benz Arocs

This one is for the LEGO Technic fans - the new LEGO Tecnic Mercedes-Benz Arocs!

Although we aren't really a LEGO Technic fan (the pieces just doesn't feel very LEGO to us), we can't deny that we have always been impressed by what you can build with LEGO Technic. The special LEGO pieces allow for more accurate designs to be built, hence resemble their real life counter parts much closer than those built by the original LEGO pieces.

This time LEGO Technic has partnered with Mercedes-Benz and recreated their Arocs trucks. The set comes with LEGO motor and battery box as well, so it moves! Talking about realistic! LEGO are now challenging fans to spot the difference between the real Arocs and the LEGO Technic Arocs:

Looks pretty good right? The LEGO Technic Mercedes-Benz Arocs will be available from this Saturday 1st August 2015 from all good toy stores, retailing at RRP £169.99 (2,793 pieces). Certainly one for the collectors this Christmas!

Monday, 27 July 2015

It is Time for that Long Needed Holiday

Image from Getty Images
Two weeks until our trip to Holland! We are so excited because we are desperate for a holiday abroad. The kids are already bored on their second day of their Summer holiday too, which really isn't helping!

Mind you, it wouldn't be the Sun, Sea and Beach holiday that I was planning for since last year. After all, circumstances and priority changes, so last minute holiday plans are probably more suitable for us.

Even though our plans has changed, there is no harm in browsing for the holiday we wished to go on, especially after seeing my family's pictures of their holiday in Spain (I'm totally jealous). I've put my wishlist together here to refer back to when we can finally go on one of them. Maybe it can spark up your interest as well to take a last minute holiday abroad?

Beach Holiday - Costa Calma, Fuerteventura SPAIN

We are, okay.. I am, pretty "city" in the core. The last time we went on a Sun, Sea and Beach holiday (back in 2006), we enjoyed spending some of our time inside the hotel that has its own facilities and entertainment, and I think that if we go on a pure beach holiday, me and the kids might get bored pretty quickly. Costa Calma in Fuerteventura sounds like the perfect beach holiday for us, as it has everything to keep us entertainment while being so close to the beach too! I think we can easily stay there for a 7 to 10 days holiday no problem!

Cruise Holiday - Colourful Coast Cruise Trip on Thomson Majesty

Images from Thomson's website
We have been talking about a Cruise holiday for years now, and what better than one that has a Kids Club as well to keep the kids entertained? Unfortunately there’s no way we can hop on a last-minute cruise this year, so I’ll have to remember this one! Their Colourful Coast is definitely our cup of tea, and it will stop by Lanzarote, the island I was looking at last year!

City Holiday - Dubai

Image from bit.ly/1RXac9O
We have done a lot of city breaks, but the top one we'd love to visit, and think that the kids might like too, is Dubai. We've passed by the airport plenty of times, and would really love to venture out to check out one of the richest city in the World! Maybe next time we will spend a night there during our transit to Hong Kong/ Taiwan (it would make a great stopover in the middle of a 22 hours flight!).

Just looking at the pictures makes me want to go to all of them. But Holland is waiting for us and I'm sure we'll have a fantastic time there! Just two more weeks!!

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