Brownie Sandwich Cookies with Raspberry Buttercream: An Illustrated Recipe.

Hello! This blog post is part of my series of illustrated recipes, because I love making food as much as I love drawing it. This time, I madeChocolate brownie sandwich cookies, filled with raspberry buttercream. These were totally amazing and I highly recommend them. They’re chewy and rich, and the filling adds just the right amount of zing.

I’ve adapted the recipe from this pretty food blog. The recipes for the brownie bit is the same, but I’ve written it down for you because the blog is in Polish, and Google Translate gave some pretty…er… questionable directions (involving the word ‘slaughter’).

COOKIE RECIPE

  • 300g dark chocolate, roughly chopped (You can use choc chips)
  • 40g butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 120g caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 35g plain flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • pinch of salt

DIRECTIONS

Melt the butter and 200g of the chocolate in a double-boiler (reserve the rest of the chocolate). Allow to cool. In another bowl, whisk the eggs, sugar and vanilla until thick and fluffy (about 5 minutes of whisking). Pour the melted chocolate mixture into the egg mixture. Mix well. Gradually add the sifted flour, baking powder and salt to the chocolatey mixture. Finally, Add the remaining 100g of chopped chocolate, and stir well. Allow the mixture to stand for 10 minutes. This last stage is very important as it gives the batter time to thicken up.

While waiting, preheat the oven to 180 degrees C. Line two cookie trays with baking parchment. Use a teaspoon to spoon dollops of batter onto the cookie trays. Arrange the dollops several centimetres away from each other, as they will expand.  Bake for 8-10 minutes. Allow to cool thoroughly while frosting.

RASPBERRY FROSTING RECIPE

  • 1.5 cups of sifted icing sugar
  • 1/4 cup defrosted frozen raspberries (remove excess moisture with paper towels)
  • 1 tablespoon softened unsalted butter

DIRECTIONS

Mash the raspberries with a fork. In a large bowl, combine the raspberries with the sugar and butter, and whisk until light and fluffy. The consistency of the filling must be fairly thick (almost like peanut butter), so feel free to add more icing sugar if it seems too runny (or a teaspoon of water if it seems too thick). Use a butter or palette knife to smooth the filling onto cookies, and press another cookie on top to make the sandwiches. Note that you don’t need food colouring to get the bright pink colour – the raspberries do the job!

You should make these. You really, really should. and if you do? Show me!

Ohh Deer Pillow Fight: My designs.

Hello! These are my entries to the Ohh Deer Pillow Fight competition. You can see larger versions on the Ohh Deer site here and here.

I’ve always wanted to design my own range of homewares!  A Thefty home would be a colourful one, with doodly faces peering up at you from unexpected places (that came out sounding creepy. Oops). The winners of the competition will have their designs turned into actual cushions, stocked by Ohh Deer. That would be very exciting indeed.

What do you think? Would you put these cushions on your couch?

Random Project: Photos From the Show

I attended the opening of the Random Project exhibition at Rich Mix last Thursday. It was very bright and colourful, so I took a lot of photos (as usual). The exhibition will be running until August 19th, so head over and check it out before then! (In case you’re wondering, these two are my pieces.)

Postcards were sent from all over the world. These are just a few of the places.

Postcards hanging from floor to ceiling.

One of my favourite postcards featured the Queen and her signature wave.

Continue reading

Simple Things: A Belle & Sebastian drawing

Hello! I’ve always been inspired by song lyrics, and around 2008, I was obsessed with this song by Belle & Sebastian. I have a mountain of sketches inspired by that short, sweet song. I found the bones of a drawing in a folder today, and have spent the last few hours turning it into this:

‘If you want me look me up

I don’t exist in usual places

subtle as the wind is grey’

This song fills me with the good kind of melancholy. I love it.

Wedding Animals

Hello! Do you remember these animal line-drawings I made in April? I created them for the wedding of two animal biologists. The bride kindly sent me some pictures of my artwork  ‘in action’. Doesn’t it all look beautiful? The wedding looked so stylish, yet simple and earthy.

The tables were named after species studied by the bride or groom. This was the  red squirrel table.

There was also an aardvark table, a hoopoe table and a hyena table, amongst others!

The King Penguin table.  (I love the idea of flowers in jars.)

The table plan, featuring all 13 drawings.

And lastly, the happy couple. Congratulations, guys!

All photography by  Jenny and Rudi Kennard at WhatImage Weddings.

Search Term Sketch #1: Rainbow Corgi Spaceman.

Hello! On Tuesday, I saw that someone had Googled ‘rainbow corgi spaceman’ to get to this blog. My instant reaction was OH MY GOD I NEED TO DRAW THAT. I mentioned this on Facebook and quite a few of you agreed with me. So, here you go! A rainbow corgi spaceman for your viewing pleasure:

I get quite a lot of bizarre search terms leading to this blog, and I think it’s high time I started a ‘search term sketch’ series. What do you think? Either way, I hope the original corgi-Googler comes back to see this!

Got The Flu (again)

I am very talented at getting ill on holiday. I got back from Brussels on Monday afternoon, and by evening I was coughing. I now have a fever and have lost my voice. However, there is a silver lining! Being bed-bound always puts me in the mood to draw:

Being ill turns me into a self-pitying drama queen. If you’d like to see some more of my melodramatic sickness sketches, please click here.

The Random Project: Postcards, snails and scribbles.

Hello! Have you heard about the Random Project? In the run-up to the 2012 Olympics, the public has been invited to create hand-made postcards in response to a random keyword they are given. The postcards will then be exhibited in March 2012. I thought it would be fun to take part.

My random word was sport. Now, I’m not the most athletic person in the world, so at first I was stuck. But then I remembered it was about what the word meant to me. And so, I drew a good sport. (I guess that’s what the Olympics are about too.)

This is my favourite one. I like the idea of using a couple of snails to illustrate the idea of ‘sport’. Hee hee.

My initial attempts involved robots, but then I realised I liked snails better.

If you’d like to take part in the Random Project, click here for details.

Sketchbook Characters

Hello! I am one of those people who has about ten sketchbooks on the go at any given time. I don’t know how it happens, but it does. The result is that I draw things and then forget about them until I stumble upon them months (or years!) later. I decided to look through some of my sketchbooks yesterday, and some of the stuff really made me laugh:

There was a fair bit of material, so I posted the rest in a Facebook album, here. Check it out!

Scribbles on Fluoro

I spent yesterday afternoon on my balcony, eating marshmallows and scribbling on fluorescent paper (a friend had given me a pack for my birthday, and I couldn’t wait to play with it). I really like fluoro, but I often use it as an accent in my work, rather than starting off with such a bright background. Here are the fruits of my labour:

I put the rest of the photos on my Facebook page. Click here to see them!

Return to Oz

Darren of Ghostheart Studios is making an 80s cult films zine, and has invited artists to submit artwork. I immediately knew which movie I wanted to draw: Return to Oz. As a kid, I watched a lot of scary movies with my brother (e.g. Friday the 13th), but none of them scar(r)ed me – and delighted me – as much as Return to Oz. The effect still hasn’t worn off.

I created a poster-style drawing, trying to capture the mood and visual style of the film. The colours on the ‘poster’ are vibrant and lively, but also somewhat murky and grim – just like the film. I based my image on the freakiest part of the film, where Dorothy sneaks into Princess Mombi’s chamber of heads, in order to steal her powder of life:

I really enjoyed working on this drawing, especially because I got to revisit one of my favourite films. I can’t wait to see what the other artists have produced! Watch this space for updates!

What I Wore Today

Hello! On Tuesday night, I attended the book tour for Amelia’s Compendium of Fashion Illustration. It got me really inspired, so I decided to contribute to Gemma Correll‘s amazing What I Wore Today Flickr group. (I’ve been considering contributing for ages, but never got around to it.) Below is the final result…and I like it…although I think I’ve made myself look a bit like the Incredible Hulk.

Click here to see Gemma’s blog of the same name. It’s really addictive!

Sickness Sketches

Hello there.

Here is a series of sketchbook drawings I did when I was ill and feeling very sorry for myself. (I’m better now, by the way).

I did them all with colour pencil, paint marker and felt tip pen.

Love,

Thefty