Looking Back on 2011

It’s New Year’s Eve and I thought before we fondly say adieu to 2011, now would be a good time to write a retrospective of this year; mostly my thoughts on it. It would also make up for my lack of an anniversary post – I was away and not really able to blog. (Hopefully I’ll be home in 2012 when this blog of mine turns three.)

First, I want to thank you all – my family and friends, readers, blogging friends I’ve made along the way, as well as all my followers on Twitter and fans on Facebook, for making all that happened this year possible. Thank you for providing the motivation to continue writing this blog and inspiring me. While in my head I think I could have continued blogging if no one was reading this blog, I know really part of the reason why I continue to blog is because of you who are reading it and leaving comments when I post something new.

Every time now when I’ve finished a post and I click the publish button, I see that post landing in all the inboxes of people who follow Z’s Cup of Tea by email, appearing in their Twitter and Facebook feeds. Then I get embarrassed when I notice a typo afterward or my Mum does.

Continue reading “Looking Back on 2011”


For Japan with Love: An Essay (via trend & chic)

This is an important post that I wrote this morning and have just posted now on my other blog, trend & chic, about Japan and humanity. Thank you all for reading. 🙂

For Japan with Love: An Essay This cookie has 100% of proceeds from purchase go toward disaster relief in Japan. Some time has passed since the earthquake and resulting tsunami hit Japan; last Thursday, another earthquake of a 7.0 magnitude hit the country – a magnitude that is supposedly normal for that area but still devastating in light of the earlier quake and resultant tsunami. When the disaster in Japan and awareness of it first arose, the blogosphere was awash in… Read More

via trend & chic

Go Ahead Honey, It’s Gluten Free! Cream of the Crop: Dairy-Free Delights Round Up

For this month’s theme of Go Ahead Honey, It’s Gluten Free, it was dairy-free delights. This was new for many people and a great opportunity to explore and discover options or alternatives to dairy. Dairy is sometimes a tricky ingredient to replace, depending on what’s being made – in most cases I’ve been successful in replacing it but in others, not so much, or I’ve yet to find a suitable alternative. This can be tough, especially as not everyone can eat soy or rice products, for example, but slowly, there are more options becoming available for those who eat dairy-free or are lactose intolerant. Coconut milk, for example, I think is only really being picked up on now (at least in our part of the world) as really healthy and flexible to use in a variety of dishes, in both sweet and savoury.

If you’ve been wondering what to make for dinner, or dessert, or just something to nibble, there’s a great variety that you could mix and match. There’s a lot of sweets and fruity things since summer is officially here, but there are a few savoury dairy-free delights as well. Some are also grain-free, and also suitable or “legal” for the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) or could be easily adapted as such.

I decided to present every dairy-free delight in the order that I received them. I would have loved to make them as they rolled in, but I didn’t have enough time, unfortunately. Thank you, Naomi, of Straight Into Bed Cakefree and Dried, the creator of this monthly blogging event, for having me hosting this month; and thank you everyone who joined in this event and helped spread the word! It would not have been possible without you. I also thank my sister, who helped me with the layout of some of the photos. (Unless otherwise noted, she does all my photo collages for me, until I’ve learned how and remember.)

First, Jamie of What On Earth Do I Eat Now? made gluten-free, vegan blueberry muffins, which are also gum-free! (Xanthum or guar gum, that is.)

A double whammy:  Chinese Five Spice Molten Chocolate Cake and Moist Chocolate Avocado Cake from The Curious Baker. I’ve seen many recipes for molten chocolate cake (alas, cannot yet say eaten many molten chocolate cakes as well) but never one with Chinese five spice. Since seeing the spice used in a cookie, I’m thinking we have a new trend going on here! Avocado and chocolate is still something on my goals list to try.

Naomi Devlin, of Straight Into Bed Cakefree and Dried and the creator of this wonderful blogging event, submitted these Dairy-Free Mango Ice Cream Lollies. I think that these ice cream lollies are really unique since it uses dried mango, which hooked me from the start.

Continue reading “Go Ahead Honey, It’s Gluten Free! Cream of the Crop: Dairy-Free Delights Round Up”