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Lime and Courgette Cake

Courgette cake with lemon and lime marmalade

I took this to a coffee and cards and told everyone it was a lime cake, not a courgette cake, it was very strongly lime flavoured. It makes a lovely moist sponge and with the lime was quite ‘refreshing’ according to one taster. Courgette/zucchini cake with lemon and lime marmalade

The original recipe for this lime and courgette cake comes from Nigella Lawson’s book ‘How to be a Domestic Goddess’…but as usual I modified it quite a bit!

There are reasons why I modified it but they all hinged around making this a dairy free cake. That meant I didn’t try and do a cream cheese icing on top (dairy free cream cheese is, in my opinion, just yuk, though with plenty lime it might have been ok I didn’t want to risk it). Then there was supposed to be a lime or lemon curd filling and as I didn’t have the time or energy to make my own I shop bought one, only to realise seconds before putting it on that it contained butter, if I had made my own I could have made it dairy-free.

So here is my version:

Ingredients

250g courgettes (2 large ones – zucchini if you’re across the pond)
2 large eggs
125ml vegetable oil
150g golden caster sugar
225g plain flour
3 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp bicarbonate soda

2 x 20cm sandwich tins, greased and lined (I only lined the bottom but it is definitely easier if you line the whole tin!)

Filling
1 jar lemon and lime marmalade (in my case a last minute decision, and a home made marmalade found hiding at the back of the cupboard!)

Icing
300 g icing sugar, sieved
100g dairy free spread (I use ‘Pure)
juice of 1 lime

To decorate
2-3 tablespoons of chopped pistachio nuts
lime zest curls

Method

Preheat oven to 180 degrees C

Wipe the courgettes, don’t peel them and grate but not too finely as they can go a bit soggy. I squeezed out some of the excess juice before I added them but you can decide how squishy they are.

Put the eggs, oil and sugar together in a bowl and beat with a hand mixer until creamy. Sieve in the flour, baking powder and soda and beat again until well combined. Stir in the courgette, pour mixture into tins and bake for 30 minutes. They should be slightly golden and firm to the touch. Leave in tins for about 10 minutes then cool on a rack.

To make the icing, beat the icing sugar and dairy-free spread with a hand whisk and add the lime juice. Add more icing sugar if necessary to thicken it. (To be honest I guessed the quantities above, I just made it up when I did it!)

Spread the marmalade over the bottom layer. Stack the second layer on top and cover with the dairy-free ‘buttercream’ icing.

Sprinkle with lime zest curls and pistachios just before serving (best to allow the buttercream to set a little first).

When serving you can decide what to call the cake. I started calling it lime cakeinstead of courgette cake and I did own up to the courgette after they’d eaten it!…and as for the lemon curd, well my husband loves the stuff and was delighted to be told he’s got a whole jar that’s been opened and needs to be eaten!no

Update August 2018, I can now get an Oatly dairy free creme fraiche which I think could be used to make an alternative topping with lime juice and some icing sugar. Haven’t tried it yet but confident it would work.

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ALL our Christmas Cards are charity cards!

reindeer stable christmas cards are charity

Charity Christmas CardsYou may not know this but most wholesalers don’t give a percentage of their profits from the Christmas cards they make to charities. Flamingo Paperie are different. For every Christmas card sold the Phoenix International Charity donates 1p to charity. They have so far donated over £1.8m to good causes. Our Christmas cards are charity cards.

Every single one of Flamingo Paperie’s Christmas cards are charity cards.

Just to clarify – this is the donation from the wholesaler, not the donation from the retailer. When you look at the back of Christmas card packs you’ll usually see the donation made by the retailer. In the case of the cards I sell, I am the retailer!

So do I make a donation to charity?

Yes! Nearly every event I attend is a charity event. Whether it’s the stall fee or a raffle prize there is nearly always a charitable donation made (this is for any event, not just Christmas ones). I also do loads of fundraising events for local charities. For example a gift wrapping evening for a local church women’s group. At an event like this I donate a minimum of 10% of all sales (not just Christmas cards) to their charity of choice.

Businesses who wish to buy cards for sending corporately this Christmas can choose which charity they would like their 10% to go to. I can do this through justgiving.com so I can link your company to the donation.

Individuals who wish to hold an individual event, like a coffee and cards, can choose to donate 10% of the total sales to a charity of their choice.

Hopefully this helps to explain a little how Flamingo Paperie Christmas cards don’t just look good, but do good!

If you are from the Western Isles you will be interested to know that the wholesale charity donation from all UK sales of Phoenix’s Christmas cards in 2016 benefitted local charity Hebrides Project Alpha. I successfully nominated them as one of the chosen charities for Christmas 2016. They received £150 from the Phoenix International Charity.

I nominated local Beavers and Cubs from Laxdale to receive a donation from Flamingo Paperie’s 2017 Christmas Cards.

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Can I make money at this?

join flamingo paperie direct selling cards

I must get asked this question so often by people considering joining my team of Independent Flamingo Partners. My answer to this question probably applies not just to Flamingo Paperie direct selling but to all direct sales opportunities and possibly to all businesses too.

In short, yes, you can make money from this but – Fast car, get rich quick

How much you make depends on how much you’re prepared to put in.

I don’t believe there is any get-rich-quick-with-little-effort scheme. Flamingo Paperie direct selling is no exception.

To build any successful business you need to invest time and effort, a lot of positive mental attitude and probably some wise financial outlay.

Time and effort

Don’t expect to start your new business with a new personal online shopping website and for people you’ve never met to suddenly purchase huge amounts from your website without ever seeing the product or having a recommendation from someone who has.

People need to see a product between 3-7 times before they will make a purchase and they are more likely to purchase based on a recommendation of someone they know and trust.

So if you’re not prepared to repeat a sales activity at least 3 times then it’s probably not worth doing. It takes time.

Positive Mental Attitude

You will need to be determined. People will say no, it happens. Are you prepared to ask someone else? The more you ask, the more ‘nos’ you will get but you will also get some ‘yes-es’ and if you don’t ask you won’t get the nos but you certainly won’t get the yes answers either.

People aren’t really buying the products, they are buying you. Customers need to trust you before they will buy.

If they already know the product then they might trust you because of the trust they already have with the brand you’re selling but if they don’t know the product then they have to trust you first. That’s why when new Traders start in my team I always suggest they begin with an at home launch event with friends. Coffee and cards, at home eventThese people already trust you, they have probably already ‘seen’ your product through you talking about it so they’ve already had a ‘visit’ to your stall, even if only in their mind. It constantly amazes me the number of new Traders who refuse to do an at home event and then wonder why they struggle. If you can’t start with the people already within your trust circle you’re making it very hard for yourself to get your business going.

Money

How often do I hear people wanting to start a new at home business with no financial outlay. Often the reason is fear, not a lack of finances.

If you really want something, you’ll find the money.

Build your businessIf you’ve bought the product and you like it, then surely others will too? Most direct sales companies offer really good, heavily discounted start up stock packs. This isn’t to lure you into the business. They know that starting a business is the hardest part. However, with a good start up stock you are more likely to recoup your initial investment quickly and have repeat customers on board.

So perhaps you’ve read all this and are now thinking that Flamingo Paperie direct selling is not for you.

Well, maybe I’ve saved you a little heartache – or perhaps I’ve helped to prepare you to invest in your business. Maybe you can see the bigger picture, which is that when people who trust you, buy from you, and keep buying from you, then tell others who in turn become customers, that’s how your business grows. Perhaps now you won’t focus so much on the success or failure of an individual ‘event’. Instead you’ll see a process of growth that has many individual steps to it.

You might also be asking if there is a limit to how much money you can make? Through sales alone then yes there definitely is. At some point you’ll be so busy you’ll have to turn down events. There are only so many orders and deliveries you can make. If you want your business to grow then you need a team, a network of Partners who work with you and that you support. In return you’ll get commission from the parent company. How much, just like with your income from sales, is up to you. You can start building your team from day 1.

In direct sales every Partner has the potential to earn as much as anyone else. We all buy at the same level of discount and we call get the same commission opportunities. This is why it’s not a pyramid scheme. How much you earn depends on how much you put in. 

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STATUTORY NOTICE

It is illegal for a promoter or participant in a trading scheme to persuade anyone to make a payment by promising benefits for getting others to join a scheme. Do not be misled by claims that high earnings are easily achieved.