Honey, You Baked!

http://www.honeyyoubaked.com

Welcome to Honey, You Baked! Come and join the party with Danni & Mel: friends and mummies who used to work together, and now blog together, states apart. Two Mammas makin' and bakin' in Sydney and Tassie.

Danni & Mel is a winner of Top 25 Australian Moms - 2013

What's the best part of raising a family in Australia?

The weather and open spaces. The kids being able to play outdoors year-round. There is nothing worse than a house full of cooped-up kids... We also love Summer Christmasses - the whole family can celebrate outside in the sunshine (or even better, at the beach!)

In what ways is Australia unique from other places you've lived or traveled?

Cultural diversity and the fact that people are really laid back and easy going. The food and local produce is spectacular.

What do your kids love most about living in Australia?

We have deserts and mountain, rain forests and beaches. A fabulous place for kids to learn to be KIDS and enjoy all that nature has to offer...

What's the best family vacation destination in Australia?

Danni & Mel

I think Sydney, because that's where Danni lives. There are lots of fun things for the kids to do (beaches, zoo, incredible parks and playgrounds) and lots of yummy things to eat and fun things for parents to do and experience too... I'm hoping Danni would say Tassie so she could come and visit us here and have a Honey you Baked reunion in Tassie. Clean air, more yummy food and lots of free space for kids play! ~Mel~
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What is your favorite quick breakfast recipe?

Danni & Mel

Quick & Easy fluffy Omelettes... A batch of this would normally serve two adults and a toddler 6 eggs - with 4 whites reserved If you want to add some meat just pop in whatever you have on hand, chopped into small pieces (shredded cooked chicken/chorizo/ham/bacon etc.) A handful of baby spinach - chopped finely. Any fresh herbs you might have on hand - I find parsley and basil to be best Half a tomato, chopped finely. A dash of light cream - probably a couple of tablespoons. A handful of grated cheese with another big handful reserved for sprinkling on once cooking. Salt and pepper to season. Heat a small skillet or frypan (non stick is easiest) Beat the eggs well, then add all the ingredients except for the reserved ones. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until soft peaks form. Carefully fold in the egg whites. Pop a little butter in your pan and melt, then pour enough mix for one omelette and sprinkle with a little of the reserved cheese. Once the bottom sets, fold the omelette over onto itself so you have a half circle shape. Cook for another minute or until it's set to the consistency you like. Repeat for the other two Omelettes! This makes the loveliest, fluffy Omelettes!
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How do you keep your kids involved with chores?

Danni & Mel

My Little Miss 3.5 is going through that stage of being clingy to Mum all over again. This can be lovely and drive me insane all at once! It also means that if I ask her to do something such as put toys away in her bedroom it's a battle to get her to do it if I'm not in there too. So I normally set her a task to do in a room that I am working on at the time - so she can put her toys away while I am putting away her clothes for example. Yesterday I was cleaning the bathroom and she came in and asked what I was doing, and that she wanted to help. So I have her a cloth to clean down the sink while I cleaned the bath. Short tasks that will fit into their attention spans work well, and nothing too difficult that is going to cause frustration. We also did a post a whole back about free printables that you can use for morning routines where you can incorporate a few chores and they have a visual reminder...
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What's a great recipe using ground beef?

Danni & Mel

We love this Super Sausage Roll recipe! It's an easy winner for a simple dinner, and even better - if you follow Danni's method for binding the ingredients, you can exclude the egg from the mix. - great for our family as our little man has an egg-free diet. You can brush the tops with milk if you still want a glaze on your pastry...
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What's an easy recipe a babysitter can make?

Danni & Mel

Here are a few go-to simple recipe ideas. First pita bread/flat bread pizzas. So quick and simple, just pop your bread on a baking tray, top with tomato paste or pesto and top with whatever ingredients they like - ham/cheese/pineapple; veggies; cheese and herbs etc. Pop in a hot oven for around 10 minutes or your cheese is melted nicely. Otherwise Jacket Potatoes with Mexican Beans are healthy and simple to make: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/03/21/worldly-wednesday-jacket-potatoes-with-mexican-beans/ Or for a sweet treat - cheats three ingredient cupcakes: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/04/04/worldly-wednesday-can-3-ingredients-make-a-cake/ The link to our blog below will also take you to a yummy and versatile potato pinwheels recipe which if you had some potato leftovers would be another easy thing for them to make...
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Please share a link to a photo of a great birthday cake you made or bought.

Danni & Mel

After seeing lots of these beautiful cakes on Pinterest, I decided to give a rainbow cake a go for my rainbow-obsessed three year old's party. 6 months old and she still talks about it, and asks for it at any Party she goes too... Looks like I'll be doing it again this year! http://honeyyoubaked.com/2011/11/21/a-kaleidoscope-of-hyperactivity-inducing-sugar-and-colours/
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Please share a link to a photo of the most organized space in your house -- whether it's a closet, drawer, toy shelf, etc.

Danni & Mel

Oh it's a hard one, but it's a toss up between the pantry or the plastics cupboard. These are the most recent big clean ups. Good thing is, since I blogged about them, I now have photos to refer back to, so I can see what they looked like and as motivation to keep them that way, it really does make life so much easier when everything has a place... The plastics drawers: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/02/01/the-fantastic-plastic-organizing-frenzy/ The pantry: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/02/27/creating-the-perfect-pantry/
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Can you share an easy, crowd-pleasing birthday party cake or cupcake recipe? (please include a link to a photo!)

Danni & Mel

So it's a bit of a cheat as it does involve a packet mix, but if you are rushed for time and want the most beautiful, moist cupcakes out, try adding some yoghurt to a packet mix. If you have people that are allergic to eggs its fantastic as you can skip the eggs that the packet mix usually calls for. We've both tried it with a number of flavour combinations now and it's just been delicious, and you can't taste the yoghurt. Here's our first post about it: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/04/04/worldly-wednesday-can-3-ingredients-make-a-cake/
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Share a fun craft that can be done at birthday parties (include a link to a photo)

Danni & Mel

Playdough is always lots of fun - we have regular Playdough sessions in this house, especially when friends come over for playdates. I add a few craft bits and pieces such as buttons, feathers, googly eyes and pipe cleaners that allow them to make fun creatures/animals/whatever out of them. There is a picture of one of our recent Playdough sessions here: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/04/29/my-week/ You could easily add items that would suit a party theme. Different coloured doughs for a rainbow party; pink playdough feathers, big clear beads that look like gemstones for a princess party; dark coloured dough, silver glitter and small Martian shapes for a space party etc. I also make Playdough using jelly/jello crystals. It lasts for ages and smells wonderful. Here is the recipe: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2011/09/26/rainy-day-rescue-jelly-crystal-playdough/ They could take home their creations intact on a paper party plate, or just provide little containers of dough for them to take home as a party favour...
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Can you recommend a great summer snack to feed kids on break or to pack for days at camp? (Please include a link to the recipe.)

Danni & Mel

We love these mini chewy Anzac biscuits. They taste great, are super-easy to make, and have a high nutritional factor - lots of slow burning energy. They are also egg and nut free which is important in our house. They also keep really well in an airtight container, so you can make extra. http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/04/25/worldly-wednesday-mini-chewy-anzac-biscuits/
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We're looking for decorating inspiration! Please share a link to a photo of your child's room.

Danni & Mel

Miss E's room is bold and colourful, at the moment she has a wall full of paintings that she has done, but the predominant colour scheme is red/green with some orange and pink thrown in for good measure - it sounds terrible but it works. Don't be afraid of colour. The room still isn't complete as far as decorating, but my plan is a whimsical woodland kind of theme, which can incorporate lots of her favourite things - owls/fairies/trees/rainbows... I've linked to a post I did a while back which shows the some of the feature items and ideas and also pictures of her nursery with the green/red/pink/orange scheme. I also wanted to edit and say that over the weekend we set up a little reading tent/corner. We all love hiding away in it! http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/08/13/a-bedroom-hideaway/
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Can you recommend a great toy that costs less than $10? Please share a link to a photo.

Danni & Mel

I'm also one to say - outdoors play! Kids love to get mucky, and outdoors play is free. It can just be drawing in some dirt with a stick, jumping in puddles, collecting leaves and flowers to dry, playing the peg game (see blog post link - great for counting & learning colours, and helping you while you hang out the clothes), or you can spend under $10 on a mini watering can and a pack of seeds and help your kids start their first garden, teaching them patience, respect for nature and maybe even learning where food comes from and how good fresh fruit & veggies taste. A mini garden is a great idea for those families living in an apartment or townhouse too...
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What's a great theme you've done for your child's birthday? Please share a link with a photo.

Danni & Mel

Between the two of us we've done a few now. Some Favourites are Princesses & Knights (or how to incorporate boys into a Princess theme LOL) . Pass the treasure chest and dragon slaying (piñata) were featured and there was the perfectly royal, tiara birthday cake. Fit for a Princess... http://honeyyoubaked.com/2011/10/07/calling-all-princesses-princes-and-knights-let-the-games-begin/ Rainbow Party - Miss E is STILL talking about her rainbow cake a full 8 months after the party. There is no doubt that I will be making a rainbow cake again this year unless things drastically change in the meantime! But it's a nice easy theme to do as you can use a mix of brightly coloured accessories to bring the theme to life. Since it was a three year olds party we didn't do structured games, but held it in a local playground... http://honeyyoubaked.com/2011/11/21/a-kaleidoscope-of-hyperactivity-inducing-sugar-and-colours/
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What's a great finger food that your kids love? Please include a link.

Danni & Mel

Both my kids love to have a range of food on their plates, so I often give them tasting plates with a number of different options... Long sticks of cheese (thinly sliced or grated for those just learning to eat), toast 'soldiers' - think strips of fruit toast or regular with your favourite topping - avocado or mashed banana squashed on is great. Snow peas (top and tailed and de-stringed. Seedless Grapes - quartered (and peeled if need be). Grated carrot. Strawberries cut into manageable-sized pieces for younger ones. Fresh shelled peas (or frozen that have been thawed (mine eat them frozen now and think it is the best treat!) Strips of cooked chicken breast (poached or pan fried on a non-stick pan or George Foreman Grill) Banana (always banana!) Cooked pasta Rhubarb & Raspberry mini muffins - recipe below: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2011/11/08/tuesday-toddler-tastes/ Or frozen yoghurt drops (eat them up quickly): http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/04/17/goody-goody-yoghurt-drops/ http://honeyyoubaked.com/2011/11/08/tuesday-toddler-tastes/
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What's a family-friendly recipe that would be perfect for a summer or Fourth of July gathering -- whether it's a grilled dish, a simple side or festive treat? (Please share a link to a photo)

Danni & Mel

The other week I made a delicious strawberry & rhubarb pie. Thats provably not quite fitting the 4th of July theme, but I did use a tiny star cookie cutter to cut out star shapes from the pastry revealing the sweet as pie pink filling below. It looked awesome and as long as your filling was presentable could be adapted to most pies - blueberry star pie perhaps? Plus the star cut outs can be used for further starry decorations on your other dishes... http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/06/18/sweet-adventures-sweet-as-pie/
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What's one of your favorite one-pot recipes? (Soup, casseroles, etc.)

Danni & Mel

I love anything that cuts down on washing up, not to mention that something just seems EASIER to cook if it's in one pot! Our favourite one-pot meals... Chicken wonton noodle soup: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/07/11/wonton-soup/ Slow cooker (crockpot) Satay (can be made with or without nut ingredients): http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/08/08/wordly-wednesday-slow-cooker-freenut-butter-satay/ Jacket potatoes & Mexican beans: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/03/21/worldly-wednesday-jacket-potatoes-with-mexican-beans/ Rice with chickpeas and lamb (Riz bi dfeen): http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/01/24/worldy-wednesday/ Summer Pasta: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2011/12/21/worldly-wednesday-summer-pasta/
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What's a great item to include in a birthday goodie bag? Please include a link to a photo if you have one.

Danni & Mel

I don't like to include lots of lollies as both my kids are young, so I prefer a few bits and pieces that are exciting and age appropriate. For Miss E's birthday party last year, we made bags with bubble sticks, a balloon (not blown up), party blower, chocolate frog, stickers and hair clips. For the boys, crayons & a small notepad, balloon, bubble stick and a Freddo. For the toddlers a bath squirty toy (we got a mixed pack from a discount store) and a mini board book. http://honeyyoubaked.com/2011/11/21/a-kaleidoscope-of-hyperactivity-inducing-sugar-and-colours/ Danni made these awesome owl treat bags which would be hootalicious for an owl or forest party: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/06/15/owl-treat-bags/ Oh and Miss N had a princess and knights party last year with the most awesome ideas for party bag treats: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2011/09/14/preparations-for-a-princess-party/
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Help us create the ultimate pirate-themed birthday party! Please share an idea for a game, recipe, party favor, decoration, etc. that's perfect for a pirate party. Include a link to a photo if you have one!

Danni & Mel

I've just blogged about pirate parties today in honour of yesterday being International Pirate Day! My My favourite thing though (and photos are included in the link) - friends created an indoor pirate ship for their daughters' party - amazing! You can have a treasure hunt and make your own 'old' treasure map (a great activity to do beforehand with the party girl or boy), what better excuse to buy lots of chocolate treasure coins!! http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/09/20/how-about-arrrrggh-pirate-party/
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What's your favorite muffin, scone, or bread recipe? Please share a link to the recipe and a photo if you have one.

Danni & Mel

Oooh! We love muffins over at Honey You Baked (no surprises there right?) Try the Best Banana Muffins: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/02/22/best-banana-muffins/ or deliciously tasty and tangy, Rhubarb & Raspberry muffins: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2011/08/01/rhubarb-raspberry-muffins/
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What's a healthy lunchbox menu your child loves?

Danni & Mel

We love things that are quick and easy to prepare or can be frozen and thawed on the day. I make cauliflower & broccoli nuggets that can be baked ahead and frozen then just pulled out in the day, pop in the lunchbox and they'll be thawed by lunch. Simple and vegelicious! http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/09/17/vegelicious-cauliflower-broccoli-nuggets/ Danni has put together a list of lots of good lunchbox ideas too: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/04/20/thinking-outside-the-lunchbox/ And I love a bit of bento inspiration, small amounts of food simply prepared but displayed differently, can really tempt kids. We've got some bento egg molds which we use to shape boiled eggs - Miss E loves them: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2011/09/27/tuesday-toddler-tastes-with-bento-eggs/
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What's your favorite pie recipe for fall? Please share a link to a photo!

Danni & Mel

I love Rhubarb & Strawberry Pie - the filling is such a pretty, pink colour and by using some cute cookie cutters you can create really cute peep-holes through to the fillings. Would be adorable with little leaf shaped holes! http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/06/18/sweet-adventures-sweet-as-pie/
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What are your favorite kid-friendly picnic eats? Please share a link to your recipe and picture if you have one.

Danni & Mel

Pink pikelets, made pink with beetroot, no added food colouring here and you can't taste the beetroot either! A great way to sneak a veggie into a favourite treat!
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What's your favorite toddler bedtime book?

Danni & Mel

Day Goodnight to the Sleepy Animals by Ian Whybrow & Ed Eaves. My kids love to stroke the fuzzy animals and say goodnight to each of the animals and make the appropriate animal noises. I've included a link to a post on our favourite sleep-inducing kids books :)
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What's a great toy for outdoor play that costs less than $15? Please share a photo or link if you have one.

Danni & Mel

We just held a Mega Messy Birthday party for my sons second birthday. We had 7 different play stations set up and each cost less than $15. A favourite was the bubble station! A big container of cheap bubble solution poured into a shallow container with assorted bubble wands. The kids aren't struggling to get the wands out of a bottle without knocking it over and they can all dip and blow bubbles at the same time. Everyone loves bubbles!
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What's your family's favorite Mexican or (Mexican-inspired) dish? Please share a link to your recipe!

Danni & Mel

We love bean, corn and spinach quesadillas! A great way to sneak some spinach into your kids if they aren't a fan. My kids love these and gobble them up! Plus they are so quick and easy to make AND you can freeze them before cooking. Make a double batch and freeze half for an easy dinner another night.
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What's your kids' favorite homemade popsicle or frozen treat?

Danni & Mel

I love pretty-in-pink raspberry coconut ice pops. Great colour and healthy! Only three ingredients, whizz, freeze and devour!
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Does your family have a good way of repurposing empty toilet paper tubes? Please share a link to a how-to with a picture.

Danni & Mel

We've used them as jiffy pots for raising seeds: http://honeyyoubaked.com/2012/03/02/the-backyard-farmer-preparing-is-caring/ And they are great for pretend play, we love using them to play pretend ice-cream shops - super cool fun!
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It's almost time to break out the grill! What's your family's best recipe for grilled meat, seafood or veggies? Please share a link to your recipe and image if you have one.

Danni & Mel

Grilled Chicken & Quinoa salad. Super healthy fuel for your families! A good one for kids that are picky about straight leaded salads too. This one has a point of difference that might get them eating their greens!
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Please share a favorite recipes for a yummy smoothie your kids love and may not realize is good for them.

Danni & Mel

My kids loves smoothies! Our favourite is strawberry, banana and oat smoothie. Breakfast in a tasty drink. Invest in some colourful paper straws to make it look pretty and fun!
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Do you use your slow cooker/crock pot even in summer? If you have a great warm-weather crock pot recipe, please share a link to it with other moms!

Danni & Mel

How about Hainan Chicken. It's not your usual heavy hearty fare!
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From juicy grilled peaches to zesty chicken, we're searching for family-favorite BBQ recipes. Please share a link to your recipe along with a large picture we can use.

Danni & Mel

We have a three course North African Feast for the bbq... Starting with spatchcock with dukkah (easily swapped for quail or larger chicken); followed by grilled lamb and then grilled peaches with Marscapone cream for dessert. SO good!
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