It's Better to Travel than Arrive?

"To travel hopefully is a better thing than to arrive"

Robert Louis Stevenson, Virginibus Puerisque, 1881.

"Robert Louis Stevenson speaks utter tosh and has

obviously never flown long haul economy class"

Kristy, first ever blog post, 2011.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Want A Discount at Macy's?

Travelling to the USA?  Heard about the Macy's Discount?  Well, here goes - I've used the Macy's International Visitors Discount Card a few times when we've been travelling in the US (and, actually, a few times when we were living there - I just showed my Aussie drivers licence - cheeky!).  It gets you 10% off the sticker price in Macy's for 30 days after printing out the Visitor Pass.  I've also managed to get 10% off the deeply discounted (and no-one does deep discount like Macy's!)  prices on the clearance racks  - it just depends on your cashier, most of them don't care and will put it through for you.

They also offer a Domestic Discount for Americans for three days after printing out the Visitor Pass.  If you don't get a chance to print out the discount pass before you travel, just find the information counter at your Macy's and ask where you can get one.  They'll direct you to a service counter somewhere in the bowels of the store and you just have to show your international ID to get one.

I've linked to the pass several times above, but if you've missed those links and want to get yourself 10% off - then just click HERE and print one out.

The last few times I've been in the USA, Macy's have also been offering a Wow Pass or Glam Pass available to purchase for $10.  I bought the Glam Pass (available at every register) last time and it gets you 20% off storewide for a day.  Storewide.  Even on deep discounted clearance.  Even on "75% off last marked price" stuff.  It's flipping amazing!  You can use it for the whole day and save a fortune.

Click HERE for a link to the Glam Pass I bought when I was there last.  I don't know if it's still running, but it saved me a heap - well worth the $10 cost.  Oh, and $5 of that $10 goes to charity - double bonus!

Make sure you google Macy's discounts before you head into the store, there's a lot of good deals out there that you can sometimes get for free.

Don't miss out - everyone can get 10% off!  Every day!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Sheep Placenta Cream : Beauty Madness #3

Please don’t think that Australia walks away empty handed from the PBI (as I’ve just branded the Placenta Beauty Industry).  In the back of the REX airways inflight magazine was an ad for Rebirth, Australia’s Number 1 placenta expert.

Pictured with a cute little lamb, they’re proudly announcing that they’ve sold over 3 million jars world wide.  This product contains 45% pure liquid sheep placenta.  REVOLTING!  Who comes up with this stuff?  I guess at least you're not expected to drink it, like the Japanese pig placenta drinks ...

Rebirth, Australia's No. 1 placenta expert
Established in 1993, Rebirth Company is the original placenta expert in Australia. The Rebirth laboratory pioneers unique skin cream formulas utilising sheep placenta. Fortified by pure placenta ,the Rebirth skincare range minimises early signs of age spots, scars and skin discolouration, ensuring naturally beautiful skin. The perfect proportion of placenta, mixed with a water and oil base creates a rich, smooth, yet non-greasy and highly absorbent cream. In addition Vitamin E, a natural antioxidant, plays a vital role in stimulating new cell production. For anyone who wants to maintain younger looking, soft and radiant skin, the Rebirth skincare range is second to none.

Rebirth is dedicated to developing the most effective anti-ageing skin treatments available, at affordable prices. We offer a 100% money back guarantee to anyone not satisfied with Rebirth products. As the placenta skincare experts, we are commited to complete customer satisfaction!

About placenta
Sheep placental extract is a rich source of "bioactive nutrients" including essential amino acids, placental protein, Hyaluronic Acid (HA), Superoxide Dismutase (SOD), Nucleic Acids, Epidermal Growth Factors (EGF's), Senescent Cell Activating Factors (SCAF's) and antioxidants.
• Amino acids are building blocks of proteins and are needed for most bodily functions.
• SOD is a potent antioxidant enzyme that acts as a free radical scavenger, protecting cells from oxidative harm caused by free radicals. Diminished oxidative harm results in fewer fine lines and wrinkles.
• There is a reduction of age spots and pigmentation due to decreased production of melanin by SOD.
• HA promotes rapid healing and diminishes scars.
• EGF's trigger new cell generation and renewal.
• SCAF's activate the renewal of aged cells, thereby resulting in rejuvenated cells that are youthful, healthy and hydrated.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Placenta Jelly Snacks : Beauty Madness #2

Oh, yummy!

Another fabulous (and not at all insane) new product in the Singapore edition of Cleo was listed under the heading “Yummiest Beauty Supplement”, so it won’t come as any surprise to you at all to find out that it is Dr Ci:Labo Placenta Jelly.  Placenta.  Pigs placenta.  And you EAT IT.  To make you pretty. 

The advertising blurb reads:-

“This is as guilt-free as a sweet treat gets!  Each stick contains jelly with tasty rose and peach flavours so it’s a great mid day pick me up.  But what’s awesome about it is that it’s not only low in calories and fat-free – it also contains potent skin-loving ingredients like collagen for plump and elastic skin, ceramide for hydration, hyaluronic acide to up your skin’s ability to retain moisture and up to 9,000mg of placenta to keep signs of premature ageing at bay”.

9,000mg of PLACENTA.  Placenta.  That you eat.  I can’t even …

Oh, and the runner up in the edible placenta race was Dr Ci:Labo Placenta Gold, which offers “2,500mg of safe, secure and top-quality placenta extract from Japan”.  Because, obviously, Japanese edible placenta is of a far higher quality than your bog standard edible placenta from other less fabulous countries.  Apparently.  Give me strength.

Oh, and just in case you need a tiny reminder of what placenta is, here you go, bet it makes you hungry just reading about it:-


  [pluh-sen-tuh]  Show IPA
noun, plural pla·cen·tas, pla·cen·tae  [-tee]  Show IPA .
Anatomy, Zoology the organ in most mammalsformed in the lining of the uterus by the union of theuterine mucous membrane with the membranes of the fetus, that provides for the nourishment ofthe fetus and the elimination of its waste products.
Botany .
the part of the ovary of flowering plants that bears the ovules.
(in ferns and related plants) the tissue giving rise to sporangia.
1670–80;  < Neo-Latin:  something having a flat, circular form, Latin:  a cake < Greek plakóenta, accusative of plakóeis  flat cake, derivative of pláx  (genitive plakós flat

pla·cen·tal, plac·en·tar·y  [plas-uhn-ter-eepluh-sen-tuh-ree]  Show IPA adjective
in·ter·pla·cen·tal, adjective
non·pla·cen·tal, adjective
pre·pla·cen·tal, adjective
sub·pla·cen·ta, noun, plural sub·pla·cen·tas, sub·pla·cen·tae.

Monday, August 19, 2013

What the What? Beauty Madness #1

Snails.  The future of beauty?

I’m not going to lie to you, I’m not a high maintenance beauty person.  I love trawling the makeup aisles as much as the next girl, but I’ve reached the age where I know that promises made by beauty companies are made up by ad agencies, and the models that they use aren’t really out of their teens.  Don’t get me wrong, I still get excited about finding the perfect lip pencil, but I’m a realist.

I’ve picked up a few magazines whilst travelling lately, and Cleo from Singapore had me alternately snorting with mirth and open mouthed with horror.

Yes, you read that correctly, SNAIL SECRETION.  Bet you didn’t know that “snail secretion, which contains collagen proteins, allantoin, vitamins and natural anti-bacterial peptides, repairs skin damage and stimulates skin renewal”.  Oh, yes it does, people, it sure does.

The small print states “no harm was done to the snails during the extraction process”.  So how do they get the secretion out then?  Are there a group of work experience students crawling behind herds of snails, scraping up the slimy stuff they leave behind?  Or do they pick them up and drag their slimy under-tummies across the top of a jar?

More to the point, WHY WOULD YOU PUT SNAIL SLIME ON YOUR FACE?  And how did they find out that snail secretion does such things?

I’ll never look at a snail the same way again.

The modern face of beauty.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Mango & Yoghurt Muffins : UPDATE!

Just wanted to publish an update to this recipe, as I'm not sure it's exactly the same for every kind of fruit.  I've made it twice in the past week and the mixture has been too thick and I've had to add more liquid to sort it out.  I made it once with fresh apricots and today with fresh blueberries, and both needed more liquid - I think mangoes are wetter fruit, and that was the reason they were okay. 

I added another egg and a big splodge of yoghurt to the apricot one to sort it out, and just more yoghurt to the blueberry ones - both have turned out fine.  Oh, and the blueberry one had coffee yoghurt instead of plain, and a teaspoon of instant espresso powder added during the dry mix section - fab!

So, basically, the message is to follow the recipe, but if it looks too thick then just use your imagination and add what you've got in the fridge to sort it out - you're cooking muffins, not soufflés, you can wing it a bit without too many dramas.  Mmmmm, warm muffins!  Get cooking!

About four years ago, on holiday in Greece, my friends and I tried these most amazing Apricot & Yoghurt muffins.  I asked for the recipe, and was sent it via email, but do you think I can find it now?  They were the best muffins any of us had ever tasted, and we all wanted MORE!

Anyway, I'd made raita last week to go with some Indian Chicken Wraps and had half a pot of low fat plain yoghurt left, so I thought I'd try to find the recipe and make some muffins.  No luck with finding the recipe I was sent, but I did find another recipe that used strawberries - which I couldn't find in my supermarket.  For some strange reason, they did have really cheap mangos though, so I grabbed some of those and set about making Mango & Yoghurt muffins instead.

Here we go, my notes in italics as usual:-

  • 1 & 3/4 cups all purpose flour (plain flour)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg (I used cinnamon)
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup fat free plain yoghurt (apparently you can use flavoured yoghurt too, e.g. fresh mango with mango yoghurt, but I had plain yoghurt in the fridge)
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted and cooled (but still soft)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 & 1/4 cups coarsely chopped mango (or any other fruit you've got kicking around and want to try)
  • Cinnamon sugar (if you want to add it just before you put it in the oven)

  1. Pre-heat oven to 375f/180c.
  2. Grease your muffin tin, or line with muffin cases.
  3. In a bowl, combine the first four ingredients.
  4. In another bowl whisk the eggs, yoghurt, butter and vanilla.
  5. Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until just moistened (I stirred the wet into the dry - I'm such a rebel!)
  6. Stir in the fruit.
  7. Fill up your muffin tins or cases to about 2/3 full.
  8. At this point, before they went into the oven, I sprinkled cinnamon sugar on top of each one.
  9. Bake for 15-18 minutes or until a skewer inserted near the centre comes out clean.
  10. Cool for five minutes before removing from pan to wire rack.
  11. Makes about 12.

I took them up to the barn and had four willing taste testers (hi Anne, Julia, Elena & Marissa!), who all said they were fantastic.  Give it a try!

I'm sure the horses would have enjoyed them too, but there weren't any left!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Airline Review : TigerAir

I did a 24 hour hop to Melbourne on my last trip back to Adelaide to see my lovely hubby who was visiting for the Lions rugby tour, and flew TigerAir for the first time.

I checked out comparison prices and Qantas wanted $560 for the return flight, whilst TigerAir only charged $160 (including all taxes, luggage etc.).  That made the decision fairly clean cut.  After all, it's only an hour flight over and back, Qantas has just gone mad with its pricing.

TigerAir is another airline that does what it says on the tin, they're cheap and they get you where you need to go.  There's food available for purchase, though I didn't buy any on the short flight.  I did see one guy purchase two Pot Noodles and scoff them down - no wonder he looked ill as we landed!

They land in Melbourne at a distant stand and there's a decent walk in the breeze to the terminal.  Ah, suck in that potent combination of avgas, airline exhaust, ground tyre rubber and wind!  The bulk of the walk is semi-undercover, but I don't think it'd be much fun in the rain.

You're allowed two pieces of carry-on luggage with a combined weight of 10kg.  I knew I was over on the flight back, so loaded up my winter coat pockets with purse, phones, chargers, and anything else that would fit.  I was still at 11.4kg, but they let me through (and then I speedily decanted everything right back into my bags - cheeky!).

One handy tip I discovered was that you can ask for an exit row on check-in (sometimes they appear to offer it, it's FREE) and people in exit rows board first.  First.  Before the massed ranks of passengers that have queued to board.  So you can sit comfortably whilst everyone huddles by the boarding door, and then stroll over when they make the first boarding call - you go straight to the front of the line.  WINNER!

On departure from Melbourne, you go to an old shed type area, not the normal airport departure area (look for the signs).  It's not flash, but there are a few places offering awful coffee and a newsagency with papers and mags.  There's not much sitting space, so I followed the lead of some other cheeky peeps and snaffled one of those body massage armchairs that you have to pay to get a massage from.  Needless to say, I didn't drop any coins into the slot (neither did anyone else).

Fly TigerAir and use the money you've saved to go shopping!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Oh My Goodness!

Thank you so much!  30,000 people have dropped past my blog since I started writing it a few years ago and I really can't believe it.  Thanks for wandering past and having a look at my ramblings, recipes, reviews and laughs - it's fun to write, and I'm so thrilled that you think it's fun to read.  So, thanks, and have a wonderful day!

Friday, August 9, 2013

My Dog Mocks Me

This is our angelic Archie.  How can one dog stink so much?

Most of you know that we've got a fabulous dog called Archie.  He's a chocolate Labrador that we bought when we were living in the USA and we flew him over to Germany when we were settled.  He's a brilliant dog and we adore him, he's probably the luckiest dog in Germany.  But not today.  I don't adore him today.

We've been having a long, hot spell here in southern Germany, and Archie's really been feeling it this year.  German houses aren't air conditioned, so when the house gets hot, it stays hot.  He's still been getting his two walks a day, but earlier in the morning when it's not too hot, and a much shorter one in the afternoon.  He spends most of his day laying on the cool marble hall floor.

The hot spell broke yesterday, and it was lovely and cool this morning with light rain.  I thought he'd like a nice run up at the barn (one of his favourite places), so I loaded him into the car and headed off.  When we arrived at the barn, he ran around and said hello to everyone before we headed off into the surrounding countryside for a good walk.

A crop of wheat had just been headed, leaving only the shorter stalks remaining and Archie went bounding off through it, leaving me smiling in his wake, thinking "Oh, it must be so good to feel cool and full of energy after being so hot in all that fur".  Then I saw a few birds of prey go scattering into the sky from the middle of the field, and THEN I saw Archie go and throw himself into whatever it was the eagles and hawks had been picking at.  And he rolled and rolled and rolled and rolled.  And I screamed for him come, and begged for him to come, and yelled for him to come.  And he rolled and rolled and rolled and rolled.

Then I thought I'd try the old trick of running away from him, making him feel like he'll be left behind, causing him to run after me.  And he rolled and rolled and rolled and rolled.  And I ran, and jogged, and staggered and wheezed.  And he rolled.  I ran into the field towards him and, just for a moment, he stopped rolling and gazed at me.  Then he dropped his shoulder and recommenced rolling.

Eventually he bounded back towards me, covered from head to toe in something.  Something bad.  Something VERY bad.  It was from the tip of his nose to the end of his tail, over and under his body, and between all his legs.  I could smell him on approach.

I knew there were some streams ahead so I didn't panic.  I thought he'd bound into the streams and wash most of it off, and then I could hose any remainder off at the horse wash bays back at the barn afterwards.

He went trotting off ahead of me and I was left staggering in his wake, wandering around in his toxic jet stream.  It was eye watering.  We got to the first stream and it was dry, as was the second one.  The hot weather had dried everything up, leaving just a muddy bed. 

By this time we were at the village next to the barn and I was starting to panic.  The ectoplasm was drying and I was worried that it might set on him.  This particular little village has an old ornamental animal water trough on the footpath.  That was my only hope, but I knew I'd have to lift him in - and to lift him in meant that I had to touch him quite a lot.

I took a deep breath (through my mouth, I'm not mad) and hauled/lifted/dragged him into this trough and started trying to splash the ectoplasm off with handfuls of water.  He was NOT best pleased about this, though after much admonishing from me, he did stand still.  I'm not entirely sure that dog washing is what the troughs are intended for, and locals started to gather.  The trough is clearly marked "Not Drinking Water", though the smell and colour of it now will be a handy second warning.

Some of the locals started yelling at me, but in my desperation I tried to think of it as cheering me on in my desperate venture as I smiled pointlessly and tried to look as blond as possible.  Archie only stood so much of being the centre of such unwanted attention before he took a giant leap out of the trough, shook himself thoroughly (the spray was brown - urgh)  and took off down a side street, with me in hot pursuit.

I caught up with him quickly and we headed back to the barn, bumping into my good friend Judith and some of her students on horseback en route.  I asked her if she had any horse shampoo and she said she had two large bottles that I could use, and told me where they were.  

I tied Archie up into one of the horse washing bays and went to find the shampoo and a sponge.  There ensued a fairly messy five minutes, with both of us covered in shampoo, water and ectoplasm, but I thought I'd got it all off after washing every bit I could reach in the scramble of woman and dog who didn't want to be washed.

After a few good shakes, we headed back into Judith's barn to return the shampoo and sponge.  Whilst my back was turned to put things away, Archie took advantage of my lapse in concentration and ran into Antar's stable and started rolling in fresh horse poop.  Now, as a horse lover, the smell of horse poop doesn't really offend me, so I figured I had the last laugh there.  He shook himself again and none of the poop stuck, so I wasn't overly worried.

I loaded him into the car, where he sits on a custom dog seat cover, and headed for home.  About five minutes into the drive, I noticed an odour coming from the back seat - and the odour only got stronger and stronger the longer I drove.  The ectoplasm had returned, and now it was coupled with the unique odour of wet dog and horse poop.  The dog was smiling.  Smiling broadly.

There was nothing for it but to drive straight to the lake for his third rinse.  I parked as close as I could get to the lake and leapt out of the car, straight into a mound of dog poop.  Really.  Cursing and hopping, I got Archie out of the car and headed to the lake, picking up sticks on the way.  Archie was thrilled with the stick throwing opportunities and bounded around in the lake for a while whilst I waggled my boots in the shallows, washing off the poop.

When Archie looked a bit tired, and every piece of him was wringing wet, I called him out of the water and he had a few more shakes.  I put him back in the car and we headed home, where I towelled him dry, before dropping all my tainted clothes in the hall and leaping into the shower.  I've since been back out to the car and it stinks, so I've thrown out the custom dog seat cover and I think I'll have to chuck his collar as well.

So, three washes in under an hour.  You think that'd be the end of the stink, right?  Wrong.  It's still here.  And it's bad.  I don't know what to do now.  There's no dog parlours in my part of the world and I guess the only thing we haven't done is put him in the bath and give him another wash, but I've got to wait until my hubby gets home for that one.  I'll need back-up.

Anyone have any ideas as to what else I could try?  My eyes are watering.  The dog, however, is absolutely thrilled and can't stop smiling.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Who Doesn't Love a Cocktail?

Seriously, who doesn't love a cocktail?  I know I do, and so do my friends.  There's something about a cocktail that lifts the spirits a wee bit, just makes you feel a little special.  It's not something that you have at home on your own, it's something that you enjoy with people you enjoy, and it's time to mark your calendar for upcoming cocktail events taking place somewhere fabulous near you!

  • We've already missed Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans from July 17-21, but if you click HERE you can visit their webpage and keep an eye on plans for 2014.
  • If you're cruising through San Diego on August 24-25 you can raise a glass at their fifth annual spirit fest.  Click HERE for more info.
  • My Aussies might fancy a trip to Sydney from September 21-24 and get jiggy with Sydney Bar Week. Over 3,000 attended the 2012 bash, so click HERE to find out more.
  • I know we live here, but we've never been to Oktoberfest in Munich.  I did look at prices one year to surprise my lovely hubby for his birthday, but train tickets and accommodation alone were bonkers money (and I don't drink beer).  If you're thinking about a visit this year, it's on from 21 September to 6 October.  You and 6,000,000 of your closest beer drinking friends can get all the info HERE.
  • Now we're talking, it's London Cocktail Week from 7-13 October!  Nearly 40,000 cocktails were poured at last years celebration, and this year features pop-up bars, premium tastings and master classes.  What about the vintage buses whizzing peeps around town on cocktail tours?  And it's in the Seven Dials, one of London's most fab locations.  You know you want to.  I know I want to, and I'll be clicking HERE to find out more.

And for me?  Make mine a Mojito!

Monday, August 5, 2013

Airline Review - REX (aka "Sweet or Savoury?")

When I was back in Adelaide last, I wanted to do quick trip up to Whyalla to visit my lovely friend Meg.  Last time I visited, I drove up and it was around 5 hours each way, which isn't a problem, but when you're on a tight schedule and are trying to see as many people as possible, every hour counts.  This time I decided to fly.

There's only one airline that flies to Whyalla and it's REX.  They're a small regional airline, flying to country towns around Australia.  I booked my ticket in advance on their website and it was still about $AUD240 return (for 2 x 30 minute flights).  I guess they've got the market cornered, but I still thought the prices were a bit rude.

Anyway, they start boarding from the far end of Adelaide airport, but then you've got to walk down a few levels, along an outdoor walkway and onto a bus for the ride around to the plane which is standing off apron.  Both of my planes were 33 seaters, so not that big, but not that small either.  There's a flight attendant (FA) and the pilot greets you at the bottom of the plane stairs, before he climbs up and flies you to your destination (nice touch).

There's the standard flight security and safely briefing, but then I got the giggles (both times) when the FA announced that REX advises you do leg stretching exercises during flight, with instructions on said exercises to be found in your seat pocket.  I'm no medical expert, but I think the chances of developing DVT on a 30 minute hop flight would be quite low ...

There's not much time between take off and landing, but the FA does push a tiny trolley along the aisle uttering the words "Sweet or savoury?" (those are the ONLY words, not "Hello, would you prefer sweet or savoury?") at each seat.  You get to have a free biscuit or a little bag of chips to go with a little cup of water.  Once the excitement of "Sweet or savoury?" is over, the FA comes back with a little plate of individually wrapped Mentos lollies, and you may take one.   One.  I'd forgotten how yummy they were and idly thought of palming another one, but I didn't want to cause a revolt.  Anarchy! 

The plane flies quite low and the view from the windows on both flights was great as we flew over the gulfs and the bush in between.

Whyalla airport is small, with no real security except one mammoth baggage handler and a few blokes that look like they're dozing (though they could transform into steely eyed killers when provoked, you just don't know - are you willing to risk it?).  Your luggage gets offloaded and then taken on a trailer to the front of the airport and you hook it off the trailer yourself and walk away.  There's no x-ray or security when you fly from there either, so the standard "remove belt, shoes, jewellery, sunglasses from head, laptops out, no liquids etc." thing doesn't really come into play - brilliant - just like flying used to be!

Landing in Adelaide is off apron again, and you end up in the old Adelaide International airport, in what looks like a dark old baggage shed.  There's some portable toilets and that's it.  You hook your bag off the belt, exit and find yourself on the footpath away from the airport proper.  It's a few minutes walk back to the airport for a taxi or pick-up, but perfectly do-able (just unpleasant in the rain I guess).

All in all, REX is easy and does what it says on the tin (even more if you suddenly feel the urge to do leg stretches in that quiet 10 minutes between take off and descent).  A bit pricy, but it saved me 10 hours driving and it was worth it.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Triple Chocolate Bundt Cake

The scrummy finished product.  The top stuck to the pan and I can't figure out why.  The choc chips turned into some molten glue like substance and were hell to get off the pan in the wash.  Had to wash the pan THREE times (by hand, our stupid new dishwasher wouldn't even touch the surface of that mess) with a scrubby and then eventually poured boiling water into it to try and melt the chips (that worked!).

I found this recipe on which is where I find lots of my CrockPot recipes.  This cake is NOT a CrockPot recipe though, it's all normal oven stuff.  It looked so yummy that I had to try it, and despite sticking like mad to the top of the tin, it's VERY yummy.  It's also quick to get into the oven, as many ingredients are pre-mixed (never cooked like this before!).  My notes in italics, as usual, so let's get cooking!

Triple Chocolate Bundt Cake

  • 1 x 18.25oz package Devils Food chocolate cake mix (we don't have that in Germany - surprise! - so I used 1 x 485gm package Dr Oetker chocolate cake mix)
  • 1 x 3.9oz box instant chocolate pudding mix (we don't have that either, so I used 3 x packs of Dr Oetker chocolate pudding mix came to just over 100gm in total)
  • 1 cup sour cream (I had creme fraiche and creme legere in the fridge, so mixed them both together)
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 eggs (beaten)
  • Half cup warm water
  • 1 cup milk chocolate chips

  1. Preheat oven to 350f (or 180c).
  2. In large bowl, mix together the cake and pudding mixes, sour cream, oil, beaten eggs and water. 
  3. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  4. Pour batter into bundt pan sprayed with non-stick cooking spray (we don't have that here either, so I used that squirty melty butter stuff you keep in the fridge).
  5. Bake cake for 45-50 minutes, or until top is springy to the touch and toothpick comes out clean (I got Skyping with my Mum and forgot about the cake!  It was fine after 55 minutes in our dodgy old oven).
  6. Cool cake thoroughly in pan for about 90 minutes before inverting onto a plate.
  7. I drizzled the top of mine with melted chocolate to try and minimise the damage done by the top sticking to the pan - and who doesn't like even more chocolate?

I used three packs of this - seemed fine.

One box of this was slightly less than what the USA ones weigh, but it still worked.

I had these in the fridge, so it's not EXACTLY sour cream, but it's close!