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Karen

Member’s Blog Name: 
Nana Tipsy’s Afghan and Cup of Tea

Mother, baker, nurse, cancer survivor, New Zealander, Australian!

How long have you been a Daring Baker/Daring Cook and what’s your favorite thing about being in the group(s) so far?

Have only been a daring baker since 1 March, and am eagerly awaiting my first challenge! The creativity is amazing, I love seeing everyone’s spin on a recipie

What’s your favorite kitchen gadget? How about your favorite kitchen appliance?

Favourite kitchen gadget is my carving knife. My favourite appliance is a cherry red Kitchenaid stand mixer. I don’t own said mixer YET but hey a girl can dream!

Are you known for making a certain dish or dessert? If so, what is it?

Am known for my devils food cupcakes with buttercream frosting. I baked, frosted and decorated 100 of these in a motel kitchen for my sister’s wedding and they were a huge hit.

Is there any recipe and/or technique that we haven’t covered yet that you’d really like to make/learn?

Don’t know yet.

Do you have a favorite movie? Book? Genre of music? Actor? Actress?

Have so many favourite movies – Zoolander comes to mind, books, well depends on my mood but John Grisham is entertaining me at the moment, as does Nicki Gemmel. I can honestly say I have songs I like from every genre of music, but mostly electro (Cut Copy and the Presets are great). Favourite Actor…. Has to be Jake Gylenhaal (not for his acting LOL) and Actress Natalie Portman at the moment. My favourites are pretty fluid – more about what I like today.

You’ve just won $5000.00!!! What would you spend it on?

Fantasy: craft supplies, fabulous clothes, my kitchenaid mixer, and a skiing trip back to New Zealand. Reality: paying some medical bills.

What is the ultimate comfort food to you?

Cake.

Which season (Winter, Summer, Spring, Fall) is your favorite.. why?

Winter has skiing, Summer is beach time, Spring has daffodils and cherry blossoms and Autumn means the end of a long and very hot summer…. But overall I’d have to say spring in Australia, but summer in New Zealand where it is not so hot.

Other than cooking and/or baking.. what hobbies do you enjoy?

Knitting, sewing, anything that I see on a blog and takes my fancy really.

How long have you been blogging? Do you like it? What’s your favorite post you’ve written?

Since August 2008, albeit VERY infrequently. It is mostly for me to show my mum what I have made lately, because I just don’t think anyone else reads it! Have only just thought of food blogging so I can be involved in DB!

What’s your favorite cookbook for desserts/baking? What’s your favorite cookbook for savory/cooking?

‘Bake’ by Allyson Gofton is great for baking. The Edmonds Cookbook, a New Zealand family must-have is also great for basics. Don’t really have a favourite for savoury, mostly just find recipies online.

13. Is there one food that you seriously dislike/hate? If so, which is it and why? I really HATE coriander. It has made enjoyment of Thai food difficult.

What’s your favorite flower and/or plant?

Anything with a beautiful scent – roses, citrus blossom, daphne, plus all the spring flowers.

Do you have a favorite local restaurant? If so, why is it your favorite and what kind of food is served there?

Nagisa in Newcastle, Australia. It serves beautiful Japanese food and is the reason I have a slight addiction to salmon sashimi.

Who taught you how to cook and/or bake?

My mother taught me to bake, I helped her since I can remember. As far as cooking goes, it was mostly self taught. Mum even admits she doesn’t really enjoy cooking and probably doesn’t really put that much effort into it.

What’s your favorite holiday and why?

Skiing, either in Wanaka, New Zealand, or near Sapporo, Japan. The snow was better in Japan but there is family in New Zealand to spend time with.

Reading any good books lately? Which ones?!

yes but I cannot remember the names!

You’ve had a rough week. How do you relax after a rough week?

glass of wine, hopefully husband cooking dinner, and some TV. And probably some moaning to husband about said week Wink

Where is your favorite vacation (holiday) destination?

Japan has been my favourite so far, but I am wiling to bet there are a few beaches in the Pacific/SE Asia/Queensland that would be pretty enjoyable

What is your favorite cooking/food related magazine? Why?

Good Taste Australia. It just seems to be pitched exactly where I want it. Not too fussy and pretentious, but assumes a certain amount of food knowledge at the same time!

Do you have a food addiction?

salmon sashimi. Coca Cola (not a food really). Sweets

What did you eat for dinner last night? Did you prepare it or someone else?

Chicken, bacon and mushroom risotto, with swiss apple pie for dessert. I made all of it.

What’s your guilty pleasure?

Dessert. I eat it more often than anyone I know (except my husband)

What kind of colors do you like? Pastels? Earth tones? Brights? Neons? Etc.

Brights. Especially rainbow colours – there’s something about the progression from the spectrum that pleases the eye. More warm than cool colours.

If you had the choice of a free kitchen, bathroom, living room or bedroom makeover – which would you choose and why?

Kitchen – it is not very well laid out and I would love for the benches to be about 15cm higher! I always get sore shoulders after doing a lot of cooking.

The Martha – Angel of Domestication or Minion of Evil? Why?

Both. Angel because she inspires people to be more self reliant at home, but Satan’s Minion for her encouragement of wasteful consumption (getting down off my high horse now).

Do you watch any competitive cooking shows? Like Top Chef or Hell’s Kitchen? If so, which is your favorite and why?

Masterchef Australia, Hell’s Kitchen (when I remember), sometimes Japanese Iron Chef just for the ingredients and the cheesy presenter.

What’s your favorite “sweet” spice? How about your favorite “savory” spice?

Sweet: vanilla.
Savoury: Chinese five spice mix/star anise. Plus garlic. I feel sorry for anyone around me because of how much I love garlic.

If you could eat in any celebrity chef’s restaurant which restaurant would it be, and which chef owns it?

‘The Fat Duck’, owned by Heston Blumenthal. I fully intend to eat there at some point and I cannot wait!.

What’s your favorite herb to cook or bake with? Do you prefer fresh or dried?

I don’t have a favourite, it just depends on what is right for the dish. I use fresh if I have it, but am not too fussed if I get good quality dried herbs, or even better have dried my own!

You can visit Karen on her blog Nana Tipsy’s Afghan and Cup of Tea

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