Spongedrop Cakery

My summer holiday was long and filled with many adventures in the Bay of Plenty and Auckland….it’s was absolutely fantastic to discover some new little gems of places.   I have to say Spongedrop is my new fav place to visit at Mt Maunganui,  I dropped in three times over the course of the summer. Spongedrop is new to the Mount cafe scene, with their roots in the Little Big Markets, they have recently made the leap to a permanent location.

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The cabinet at Spongedrop Cakery looking a little bare…awaiting fresh delights.

Spongedrop Cakery is on Salisbury Avenue in the former information centre (right beside the public toilets). The cakery is delightfully and simply decorated with a modern classic look, with gorgeous wee touches like fresh posies on each table. There are just three wee tables inside and a couple outside, but if it’s busy you can grab one of the picnic blankets and set yourselves up on the adjoining park lawn.

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Mini Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Along with an amazing array of fresh mouthwatering cupcakes and delightful macarons, they serve a fabulous raw chocolate caramel slice.  All individual little masterpieces reflecting their passion for good quality food made with love.   Not only are there all the fabulous sweet treats, Cassie the barista makes almost the best long black I’ve ever drank. And definitely, the best I have had outside of Wellington. Of course, I have to mention the coffee they serve is the fabulous Wellington roasted Coffee Supreme.

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Delightful Posies add cheerful touches to the tables

Danielle and team have created a delightful wee cafe, that is well worth a visit!!! Keep it up ladies, I’m looking forward to visiting again next time I’m in town.

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See the coffee was good!

I have not been recompensed in any form for this review, it is entirely my own views of a delightful holiday find.

Un Petit Peu Francais – A Little Bit French

Bonjour!

In our house, we do birthday parties, every birthday until the children turn ten, then it is a friend or maybe two for dinner/dvd. My little mademoiselle decided in order to celebrate her 10th, she needed to celebrate in style with a french themed dinner party. Being the obliging Maman that I am, it didn’t feel too far fetched to achieve.

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I own a raclette machine, a what I hear you say?  Raclette is a traditional french meal revolving around melting Raclette cheese and pouring it over potatoes, saucisson (salami), ham, cornichons, pickled onions and bread. It’s a delicious, fun and interactive meal, which requires all participants to over see the melting/cooking of their cheese.  While we can buy Raclette cheese here in New Zealand, it is relatively pricey and is a little pungent for younger palettes.  Edam has a very similar fat content and makes a suitable replacement as it melts beautifully. Raclette is one of those meals that gives maximum effect for minimum effort and can easily be tailored to a variety of fussy eaters. Always fun for kids because they can get involved.

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Knowing I can do macarons and eclairs sans beaucoup d’effort, for dessert, mademoiselle ordered up petit fours. My oven can be a little dodgy at times (hanging out for my new kitchen and appliances).  Thankfully the oven behaved on the day of the baking of macarons and eclairs, however it did not when it came to cooking le gateau. Merci, Moore Wilsons for saving the day on the gateau front.  I managed to brush the bought gateau off as being quintessentially francais, as after all that is what most french mamans would do!

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Thanks to Oncle Sam who lives in France, we were able to include some real french sweets in little bags to send home with the wonderful friends who came to celebrate.  Mademoiselle is now in double digits and this means no more big parties until her brother turns a rather significant number.

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Christmas is Coming….

I have a confession to make…I am a bit of a Christmasaholic!!!!

Christmas is sneaking up on us….did you realise, there are just two months now until Christmas!

A few years back when I was a student desparate for a bit of cash, as most students are!  I personally decorated over 200 Christmas trees for Farmers Cuba Mall in the month of October.  By the end of it, I declared I didn’t want to ever, ever again see a Christmas tree or have to decorate one. Over the years, my heart has softened and now here comes Confession two:  I own two Christmas trees, one for the kids and one for me.  the one for me, no child is allowed to participate in decorating (am I a control freak?).

In the next week, I really must get the Christmas Cake made.  Normally, it would have to be made by now and away in storage until mid December for decoration.  This whole process has been held up by School Holidays (another task I like to do for myself).  The brandy is waiting quietly in the cupboard for me to go and purchase the mixed fruit, glacé cherries etc to drown in brandy for a good few days.

I’m really looking forward to opening my letterbox and finding what decorations I receive through Sew Funky’s Christmas Ornament Swap.  I still haven’t decided what I will make to send to my nominated recipients, but I am quite excited about the little task ahead to make six or seven.  It is so lovely to receive real mail in the letterbox.

I can’t wait to set up the advent calendars for this year.  We will recycle the one we had last year, but also we will be using the gorgeous townhouse Christmas Advent Calendar available from Phoenix Trading.

I am trying to decide what really Christmassy flavours I can make my macarons.  any thoughts?

But most of all, I am looking forward to celebrating the birth of Christ, my Saviour! What an awesome gift from God, that he should choose to send his Son to die for our sins, so that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.  We are so blessed.