Finally! An EASY Muffin Recipe for ME!

We sometimes find ourselves staring down a banana past its prime. No longer pretty or desirable they get tossed, some put them on the freezer added to the mental note of baking them into something…someday.

This week two bananas have taunted me. Every time I passed the fruit bowl they silently mocked and seem to liquify before my eyes while throwing shade and over ripe banana scent to intimidate me.

I binge watch YouTube. Vlogs,documentaries and crafty videos are my jam. A while back I fell down the YouTube rabbit hole and landed on a channel called Bigger Bolder Baking. Gemma Stafford, the host intrigued me with her videos that showed how easy it is to bake with clever tips, hints and tricks. Some of her recipes have one base batter or dough that allow additives for several different tastes from one batch. That is soooo bueno!

I’ve studied Gemma’s “One Dough, Endless Possibilities” muffin video and this morning I put it to the test.

I started with the ingredients list on her Bigger Bolder Baking website. You can sign up to receive free email updates on her latest recipes.

Here I have the dry and wet ingredients ready to have a fine howdy doo meeting.

I was pleased to find how easy the batter came together and looked like the batter from her video. Yay!

Even though I used the same amount of ingredients per the recipe, I think using 3 ripe (2 of them overly ripe)bananas and 2/3 cup of walnuts & pepitas May have increased the amount of batter.

With the first batch cooling, claiming success, I lined the tin with baking paper to avoid having to wash the tin, before spooning in the remaining batter. I decided to go bolder😀 with the leftover batter adding raisins and peanut butter to some of the cups.

I am happy with the end result and look forward to playing with this recipe in the future. Wilty bananas beware!

Thanks again to Gemma Stafford of for making cooking FUN!



When Suds Lye…

Wasted days and wasted nights!

Those words from Freddy Fenders song rang over and over in my head as I finally got off the soapbox and scooted it out of my way for some soaping therapy play.

Perusing the web I stumbled upon the teardrop video of Sergio Masala a few months ago and talk about eye candy, jumpin’ jehosaphat the soap he created was one masterful artistic cake.

Quel Surpris when Amy Warden announced the May  2016 Monthly Soap challenge would be the teardrop swirl.  Signing up for the challenge I read all the information I could find on this technique and was again surprised to learn the technique had actually been introduced by a soap craft artist known as Sweetly Sweetly Sweetly. Between Amy’s teardrop swirl demo, Sergio’s and Sweetly3 I spent some good time checking out this method. I also found Kevin Devine’s teardrop swirl video on youtube to be helpful.

Following Amy’s advice on the challenge page I wanted to design a recipe that utilized a lesser percentage of hard oils and leave out butters and clays that could possibly excellerate trace.

For my slow moving recipe I designed a 25/75 oils ratio. 25% hard oils to 75% soft oils.  I went with Avocado, Grapeseed, Coconut, Olive and Sunflower oils. My temps for oils and lye water were under 100 degrees.  I used a 33.333% lye concentration with 2 to 1 water to lye ratio.



Let’s get this party started! Oils, Lye water, micas and scent blend ready to rock, roll and soap!

For this session I used  all Mad Oils micas. Wicked, Silverfinblue, 3 Olive martini, Twilight,Phyllis Diller and Tangering. For my scent blend I used 80/15 Lavender 40/42 to Lemongrass essential oil with 5% a mere whiff of the awesomely scented Black Raspberry Vanilla from Brambleberry.



Oils temperature

33.333% lye concentration. 2 to 1 water to Lye/Sodium Hydroxide ratio. 

I cut up a half a cotton ball size of tussah silk in the lye water and added 1 tsp ppo, to lye water as well.

The hardest part of this method is keeping a steady hand. My first few runs were wobbly. It takes a moment to figure out which direction to start the cups pour. A slow steady hand helps.



After filling the mold I finished by scraping cups onto of soap in horizontal lines then running a chopstick side to side vertically.


After 24 hour saponanap!









Phyllis Diller’s Delight!

How I made this soap