As Johnny so frighteningly discovered, 'All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy,' this proverb became R's and my motto last Sunday night after realising how wonderful it is to actually get out of the house, without our laptops, and relax in a new surrounding (Chateau Yering was where we had this revelation FYI).
That night, whilst laying in bed waiting for the elusive Sleep Fairy to come (tardy b*tch), we both decided that we would go to New Zealand the coming Friday, which would coincide with the Australia Day weekend, allowing us to miss only four rather than five days of work (being self employed this means we lose less $$).
The next morning I spent the entire day figuring out how much we could do in 6 days, what I didn't realise was how bloody big New Zealand is, and that driving from Auckland to Queenstown and back again was never going to happen in 6 days if we actually wanted to get out of the car.
Anyway, to cut a long story short - that's for you R ;) - I managed to figure out an awesome, if I say so myself and I do, itinerary that allowed us to see and do a lot in Queenstown, Bay of Islands and Lake Taupo. Having just returned from our most spontaneous holiday yet, I wish I could do it again this weekend, it was THAT much fun.
1. Aratiatia Dam. 2. Aratiatia Rapids.3.Huka Falls. 4. Huka Lodge.5. Milford Sounds Stirling Falls.The reason I am making these cupcake today is all thanks to my father. When he happily accepted my request that he baby-sit our dog and our house, I bought him a few things to eat. Upon returning I found out that he ordered pizza every night and had only depleted our food stock by ONE banana, that's right, ONE banana. As you can imagine, the fruit bowl, or rather the newly appointed fruit cemetery, was filled with fruit long dead and those nearing it's pearly gates. The bananas had to be used first lest they become zombies, and tomorrow, I will show you what I did with the fading peaches.
1. Lake Taupo. 2. 90 Mile Beach. 3. Cape Reinga. 4. Nevis Bungy. 5. Puketi Kauri Forest. 6, 7. Karapiti (Craters of the Moon).
prep time: 12mins (make icing whilst muffins cook).
cooking time: 25mins.
total: 37mins plus cooling time for muffins.
taste: 3.5/5. This is a case of the icing killing the dull cake.
Let's start with the cake; it was very moist with a wonderful chewy, golden exterior, although I do think 25mins was a touch too long. The small chunks of yellow flesh help to remind you that this is a banana cupcake, otherwise the flavour is quite nondescript. Even my small, 1/2tsp of cinnamon added to the batter got lost in the final result. Therefore, as a solo act, it isn't memorable.
Now onto the icing on the cake; by itself, it's billowing, peaks speckled with cinnamon and naughty nutmeg (I added 1/4tsp) are as light as air and dissolve in your smiling mouth. I was a little sad that the gorgeous, clover honey courtesy of New Zealand was washed away by the icing sugar's saccharine supremacy but as an icing, it was lovely.
However, when icing met cake, icing dominated cake into submission.
Despite my caution to smear to less than 1cm height, all I could taste was icing, with bland, cakey chunks occasionally popping up through the icing cloud. It became an icing dictatorship - no banana overthrow allowed.
Overall, as a once a day treat with a cup of tea to wash it down, it would be nice, eaten alone and more than once = sickening for moi.
would I make it again: No - too sweet and not enough banana flavour for a banana cupcake.
recipe: Cinnamon & honey frosted banana cupcakes