pin-life: a true story of pinterest dreams coming true


No more pining away pinning on Pinterest recipe boards wishing that those glorious recipes will just magically whip up in your kitchen! It is time to take action against those oh-too-gorgeous instructions for taste palate satisfaction. In normal person language – time to bake the recipes you have been drooling over for months now. Here is how:

Buy the baking gear. Do you have the right pan to bake it in? “Yes” – what are you waiting for? “No” – go buy it.

Join a group of human beings. Generally, people like food. People like other people making food for them. If you join a club with other people, choose a recipe that you can’t stop thinking about and make it for them. My downhill spiral into a new world of baking happened when I joined a group of 12 people that meet every couple of months. I had been drooling over this Toffee Vanilla Bean Bundt Cake with Caramel Glaze and Sea Salt for about a year. One of my first pins. As we sliced into it, I only hoped it had turned out out! I was also very thankful for the generous friend who bought me a bundt tin when I was in Canada – they were a little difficult to find in Dublin. I took requests for the next time we got together. Chocolate and cheesecake both came up. After a bit of Pinterest research I really jumped out of the box and went for this flour-less Chocolate Mousse Cake.

Celebrate with your work colleagues. Someone has a birthday in your office? Offer to bake their birthday cake. That’s what I did in December and ended up making this Raspberry Limoncello Bundt Cake with Mascarpone (the four of us finished off the entire cake by the end of the day …).

Pay attention to your audience and keep baking. There is no way that I could ever eat everything that I want to make! I find the challenge of making things I have never tried before very exhilarating. On occasion, it is time to pull out a few recipes and put a new twist on them. This was one of those weeks. Along with J.’s Tangy Lemon Petit Fours (sorry, no recipe), J. and I made Hot Chocolate Cake (adapted from this Chocolate Sour Cream Bundt Cake), a layered version of the Raspbery Limoncello Cake, a two layer of the Chocolate Mousse Cake and got ideas for a gluten free savoury item. To top it off, we added a few of these strawberry roses just because it is close to Valentine’s Day.

Suddenly you will find yourself making all sorts of wonderful things that you never thought you would have time for – and it won’t all go straight to your hips! Others will share the load.

the story tastes like a heart shaped lemon cake

2014-04-09 21.50.00-1Our small group Lenten journey has officially come to a close today as the readings from Lent for Everyone: Mark are now complete. I look forward to sharing about what this journey has meant for the people in the group and for myself but, until then, I would love to share the cake that we enjoyed during our last full meeting together thanks to Olive: A Heart Shaped Cake, Lemon Flavour with a Little Cross Design.

I thought of making a heart shaped cake as I did the readings of the week before Passion week.

I was reminded of God’s lavish love towards us in that He sent His Son to die on the cross in our stead. One of the readings mentioned Jesus love for the rich young ruler. Many other times we can note His love and compassion for us. As we move towards His entering to Jerusalem and Passion week I am struck by His greatest expression of love for us shown by going to the cross.

The cake has a lemon/sweet taste. I thought of the bitter taste showing Jesus suffering for us. And the sweet taste showing God’s love for mankind being so strong that He sent His Son to the Cross in our stead. ~ Olive

A Heart Shaped Cake, Lemon Flavour with a Little Cross Design on it

225g butter
225g castor sugar
Zest of 1 lemon
225g self-raising flour
1tsp.baking powder
4 eggs lightly beaten
4 tbs lemon juice

To decorate:
Sieved icing sugar
Lemon juice to mix
Some cherries to decorate in shape of cross.

Oven heat: 160c


Grease and line tin (heart shaped)

Cream butter and sugar until pale. Add zest. Sieve flour and baking powder.

Add eggs to creamed mixture, little at a time, beating well. Add 1 tbs flour for each egg.

Use metal spoon. Spoon in remaining flour. Fold in lemon juice. Spoon mixture into tins.

Bake for 25 mins. When feels springy remove from oven. Sit in cooking tin for 5 mins. Turn out onto cooling rack.

Mix icing ingredients and spread.

Decorate with cherries cut in half in the shape of a cross.


the story tastes like honey

When I read the first reading from Lent for Everyone: Mark on Wednesday morning I pictured John the Baptist walking around with a bag full of locusts and honey.

And so John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins … he ate locusts and wild honey. ~ Mark 1:4, 6

It was at that point that I figured it might be fun to make something with honey for our first small group. I figured we’d prefer that to locusts. I wasn’t expecting my first ever honey cake to be so good! Like the evening, it amazed me with how full, rich, and perfectly sweet it was.

We saw honey – We ate honey – We entered the story as part of the crowd following Jesus who are looking for something off him.

Honey Cake (from BBC Good Food)

  • 250g clear honey, plus about 2 tbsp extra to glaze
  • 225g unsalted butter
  • 100g dark muscovado sugar (I used light muscovado)
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 300g self-raising flour

Preheat the oven to fan 140C/ conventional 160C/gas 3. Butter and line a 20cm round loosebottomed cake tin. Cut the butter into pieces and drop into a medium pan with the honey and sugar. Melt slowly over a low heat. When the mixture looks quite liquid, increase the heat under the pan and boil for about one minute. Leave to cool for 15-20 minutes, to prevent the eggs cooking when they are mixed in.

Beat the eggs into the melted honey mixture using a wooden spoon. Sift the flour into a large bowl and pour in the egg and honey mixture, beating until you have a smooth, quite runny batter.
Pour the mixture into the tin and bake for 50 minutes-1 hour until the cake is well-risen, golden brown and springs back when pressed. A skewer pushed into the centre of the cake should come out clean.
Turn the cake out on a wire rack. Warm 2 tbsp honey in a small pan and brush over the top of the cake to give a sticky glaze, then leave to cool. Keeps for 4-5 days wrapped, in an airtight tin.
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