Cupcakes and cravats

One of my current (and possibly most long-standing) projects is Regency Love, an interactive novel/skill-based role-playing game set in Jane Austen’s time, available for iOS (iPhone/iPad/iPod touch). I’m the game’s lead writer (perhaps a wee misnomer, since I’m also the only writer XD), and I started the indie game-dev company with two amazing ladies (Jenny and Melody) back in April 2011, a few months before I left for the UK. Although we did our initial brain-storming in person at Mel’s place (our HQ!), helped along by lots of delicious food (primarily provided by Mel), most of the collaborative work happened while I was overseas. I was previously in Sydney last September, and since then, we’ve completed and launched Regency Love 2.0, which, among other shinies, contains a full story arc for a gentleman named Mr Graham.

Here's the app's current title page! You mind find a surprise with the next update. ;)

Here’s the app’s current title page! You mind find a surprise with the next update. ;)

We wanted to do something to celebrate the release, and, being rather food-minded, we wanted the celebration to be nomtastic. As a bit of a cake glutton, I suggested gentlemen-themed cupcakes for the evening, and threw a few suggestions at Mel. Ever so obliging, Mel agreed to turn her kitchen into a mini bakery for a portion of the evening, and we decided to meet as soon as I was done with my crazy lazy lunch at Sepia.

I was a touch more bubbly than usual, and practically glomped Mel upon arrival–understandable, I’d hope, since I’d not seen my lovely co-conspirator for over a year. (The 10 glasses of wine may have helped.) Mel had a shopping list prepared, so we hit the local supermarket, and I did a very good job of carrying the basket and achieving my weekly arm exercise.

We’d also received our first bit of fan present, in the form of chocolates (yay!). Mmm, chocolate…

Our first fan chocolate! Note my dark green nail polish, subtly stating my unending devotion to Mr Curtis.

Our first fan chocolate! Note my dark green nail polish, subtly stating my unending devotion to Mr Curtis.

These were dark chocolate Kit Kats with rose petals, chocolate brownie bits, and caramelised meringue.

These were dark chocolate Kit Kats with rose petals, chocolate brownie bits, and caramelised meringue.

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Flour Hour: Vegan Almond Cookies

I have a bit of a confession to make: I’ve been restaurant-hopping, conference-crashing, and living out of the freezer since Easter. Most of this is due to the insane workload I’ve taken on (but hey, I have ten fingers, so I can totally put them into ten pies!), but short of cutting down on sleep (which I may or may not have done), I’ve not been playing in the kitchen as much as I would like—a real shame, since I’ve been sitting on a brilliant idea for what would come after my pound cake project. All I would need is an hour to whip up some baked goods… Fortunately, amidst all the craziness today, I decided to take five (times twelve) to make some super delicious cookies. And so, I’m proud to present the first recipe of Flour Hour: almond cookies (which happen to be vegan)!

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Almond cookies in all their delicious glory.

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The Pound Cake Project: Part 3 – Finale (Days and Ways #9-12)

It’s time for the finale of the pound cake project! (For the previous posts, check out part 1 and part 2.) I had great fun playing with these four variations, and was very pleased with all the results. Unfortunately, my camera SD card decided to give out after I’d taken photos for the final variation, and I didn’t realise until much later… Fortunately, I’d snapped a photo with my phone because I couldn’t resist sharing it with a few friends—I hope you won’t mind the sub-par quality of the shot!

And without further ado, here are the last four pound cake variations:

Day/Way #9: French “toast”

If you can dunk a slice of bread in an eggy, milky mixture and fry it, why not do the same with pound cake?

Why not, indeed!

Mmm-hmm.

Mmm-hmm.

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The Pound Cake Project: Part 2 (Days and Ways #5-8)

It’s been way too long since my initial 12 Days and Ways with Pound Cake post (more from the lack of time to post than to gobble up the goodness), but I’ve finally put together the next four variations. Hope you get a chance to enjoy these!

Day/Way #5: Simply fried

I heated a rough tablespoon glob of butter on medium-high until it was happily bubbling away, then added my fifth slice of pound cake. Mine was a little charred because I was indecisive about which ice-cream I wanted, and subsequently got distracted rummaging through my freezer. Eventually, I opted for a few scoops of gooey Häagen-Dazs salted caramel, which was just delightful with the butter-fried and slightly caramelised cake.

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Lots of wonderful contrasts here: sweet and salty, hot and cold, crunchy and creamy.

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12 Days and Ways with Pound Cake (Cake Recipe and #1-4)

One of my favourite ways to spend a free(-ish) afternoon is to amble into the kitchen, switch on the radio, and play with my mixing bowls. A few weeks ago, when my afternoon/evening plans fell through and I didn’t want to clock any ‘over-time’, I decided to flip through my trusty copy of Nick Malgieri’s How to Bake in search of something to use up some soon-to-be out-of-date eggs—and lo, on page 280, I found his ‘Easy Pound Cake’. Named after its historic 1-1-1-1 ratio of butter, eggs, flour, and sugar (in pounds—hence the name), this cake is fairly common, but one I hadn’t made before. So I pulled over my apron, rolled up my sleeves, and got down to some serious hand-mixing.

The gorgeous darling.

The gorgeous darling.

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