Sugarfree yoghurt-redcurrent pie

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Another recipe from my sugarfree favorites, a super easy, no bake true summer treat! This one was made with redcurrant from our garden but every red fruit will do.

Before we start: I'm not sure to call this a pie or cake. This pie is like a cheesecake (but with yoghurt) but technically it's not a cake so I'm going for pie (just so you know).

- 600 ml of yoghurt (I prefer goat yoghurt but every yoghurt will work)
- about a handful of redcurrants or other red fruit
- about 6 tblspoons of rice sirope, honey or another natural sweetener
- 100 ml of applejuice
- 200 grams of wholegrain biscuits, sugarfree (I used cookies by Molenaartje)
- about two tblspoons of coconut oil, melted
- 6 sheets of gelatine (you could also use agar-agar but see the box for how much you should use)

Soak the gelatine sheets in a big bowl of cold water for about 5 minutes.
In the mean time, put all cookies in your kitchenmachine and mix untill they have become very fine crumbs. Add the coconut oil and mix again. If you feel it's still a bit too dry you can add some more coconut oil. Spread the cookie mixture on the bottom of a baking tin and push it firmly with a spoon untill you have an even and firm pie crust. Put it in the fridge.

Put the applejuice in a small pan.
Take the gelatine out of the water and squeeze every sheet firmly. Then add the sheets to the applejuice. Heat the mixture slowly while you keep stirring, untill all gelatine has dissolved. Add the rice sirope (or other sweetener) and stirr untill everything is mixed. Take it of the heat.

Put the yoghurt into a large bowl and add the applejuice mixture. Stirr untill it's all mixed.
Take the pie crust out of the fridge and add the yoghurt mixture. Make sure it's spread evenly.
Put it in the fridge again for at least two hours.

Take you pie out of the fridge and put the fruit on top. You can drizzle some extra honey on top and finish it with mint leafs or lemon zest, whatever you like!


Another nursery mobile in the making

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I'm working on another nursery mobile, the perfect decoration for your little one's stylish nursery.
In this little flipagram stop motion: all the handpainted wooden blocks are waiting to get assambled ;-)

Hopefully I'll be able to stock the Kim's Little Monsters Etsy shop next week (with 4 mobiles, a bit bigger than the previous ones).

Drawing my son's portrait

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People often expect I draw my loved ones very often, I'm an illustrator, right?
But I must confess I find this difficult. Because I love them so much I feel I cannot do them justice with my drawing, perfection is my struggle. (For the same reason I did not make James' birth announcement card myself but asked illustrator Sue Doeksen).

Now that James is almost 18 months I decided to get over my hesitance and on a free monday night I suddenly felt like giving it a go.

This is the first drawing I ever made of my son and although I still feel it could be better, I am happy with this first attempt.
It captures the dreamy sunny look he can have sometimes and that I love so much.
Although it's not very clear in the drawing his hair color changed from quite dark as a baby to golden blond. My little golden child :-)

NEW in the shop: Nursery Mobile

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When James was born (more than 1 1/5 years ago already!) I made him a mobile for above his crib. He loved it, kept looking at it and still does, even though he's not a little baby anymore.

Because I got a lot of requests and response to this design I decided to make a few for the shop too. This is the first design but I plan on making a bigger one too. And,  I've only made two of the above so this would make it a very very unique gift!

Every mobile is handmade of unfinished wooden blocks, painted by hand (by me ;-) ) with geometrical shapes and patterns (and a little face). It's put togheter with waxed cotton string in light beige.

You can find them in the nursery mobile shop section at

Invitation design & Father's Day

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With father's day coming up this weekend, I like to tell you about my dad.

My father is about to retire. He worked (very hard and dedicated) for over 40 years for the same company and they asked me to design the invitation to his retirement party.

My mum (secretly) took a picture of my dad which I used as a silhouette for the card. I added all his favorite things he plans on doing when retired. Things like: gardening, playing with his grand children, cycling (especially long distances, they once cycled to Rome!!), doing all the waiting DIY jobs (my dad is super handy, he said he would make James a sandpit on wheels, can't wait!) and I heard him say to my mum he plans on cooking more (that would be an exciting new adventure).

I need to tell here that my dad is my biggest fan. He refuses any art entering the home unless it's made by me ;-). So when the card was printed and given to my dad, he was truely moved. Isn't that the best reaction you can get?

Happy father's day everyone!

Color the Hood - Utrecht

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Last friday, a surprising mail popped up in my mailbox... Three of my former Illustration & Digital students started a fun and inspiring project called Color the Hood.

Anne, Maruga and Karin are working on a coloring book of their neighborhood (in Utrecht, Netherlands). The most inspiring thing about the project they say, is that they started looking at their neighborhood in a whole different way.
Isn't that a great way to explore your own habitat?

You can (pre)order the coloring book at the color the hood website.

working on... + about composition

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I often use a lot of hand drawn or hand painted structures in my illustrations but crayons haven't been out of my drawer for a long time.  For a new commission I'm experimenting with crayons and colored lines. In the end, the illustrations should become landscapes.

When I first started my illustrations bizz, I found it quite difficult to make a good composition/ background. Therefor I started making panorama boxes (like this and this one) because with that technique I could work with seperate elements and drawn props shuffling around, till I was happy with the look. This way I learned a lot about making a good composition.

I my students often struggle with the same. Loose illustrated elements are doable but combining it with a background and make a solid composition is another thing.
My online Illustration beyond the 2D - course was actually developed with (partly, it's also just good fun to play with your 2D illustrations on 3D things!) that purpose in mind.

New wooden handpainted keychains

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Hello this monday!
Did you have a good weekend? I hope it was just as sunny as ours.

I posted about the making process last week (and if you follow my FB page you had the scoop): the new products I've been making for the Etsy shop. Four handpainted keychains, made of unfinished wooden blocks, non-toxic acrylic paint and a waxed cotton cord. Since this weekend they're up in the shop.
The keychains are €12,50 a piece (quite a good price for a handpainted product, right!?) and I've got 2 to 4 of each design.

I've made two houses, one cute little one with a red roof and another of my favorite Amsterdam/ North of Holland houses with red tulips on the sides. The other two show a blond curly haired girl and a dainty red head named Ginger (of course).

They're here at Kim's Little Monsters Etsy shop.

New wooden block products for the Etsy shop


Here's a little sneak peak of a project I have been working on today. I'm making new products for the Etsy shop out of wooden blocks. I'm painting every single block by hand, which I very much enjoy as a welcome away-from-the-computer-screen.

All this was inspired by my son James, as wooden blocks are on his play list. Also, when I was pregnant with him I made this mobile for the nursery and I felt I wanted to do more with these beautiful unfinished wooden blocks ans the design made.

I hope to have them all available in the shop within two weeks. I'll keep you posted!

No sugar - Tiramisu recipe

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Sugar free baking can be a challenge. I've been off sugar since I was eighteen (so for 17 years now!!) and although I must confess I have my secret sugar moments (mostly around christmas time), I can say that I feel much happier and healthier without the white and refined enemy ;-)

Around me more and more people are looking for an alternative to satisfy their sweet tooth and as a bit of an expert (I think I am allowed to claim this title after 17 years, haha!) I will share with you my favorite recipe for tiramisu (Imke, this is for you!) that has even proved itself with sugar eating friends.

Note: It does contain palm sugar, which technically is a sugar BUT... it is not a refined sugar and it is known for being low glycemic. This means it will not give you that peak in your sugar levels (and after that a dramatic low), so it will not make you feel tired and horrible.

Ok, the recipe:

- 3 egg yolks
- 100-120 grams (depending on how sweet you like your tiramisu) Arenga palm sugar
- 180 grams of mascarpone
- 3 dl whipped cream
- 5 dl strong coffee (made with instant coffee, strangely enough gives the best taste), cooled down
- 2 tblsp dark rum*
- about 3/4 pack of wholegrain sugar free biscuits (I use organic spelt biscuits)
- about 2 tblsp of pure cocoa powder 

whip the egg yolks with the palm sugar untill it looks smooth and fluffy and all sugar is dissolved.
Stirr the mascarpone in another bowl and then add it to the yolks and sugar mixture.
Now add the whipped cream and 'fold' (do not stirr it to enthusiastic or you'll make the mixture too runny. It needs to stay firm) in gently into the mixture.

Add the rum to the coffee. Now take a large ceramic or glass baking dish (round or square, doesn't matter) and spread a layer (about 1 cm thick) of the mascarpone mixture in the tray.
Soak the biscuits one at a time into the coffee (they should be soaked but not fall apart) and put them, close together on top of the mascarpone layer.
Repeat this untill your tray is filled to the top.

Put the tiramisu in the fridge for at least 3 hours (I find it tasting even better after one night in the fridge). Sprinkle the cocoa powder on top before serving. Enjoy!

* please know that rum is made from sugarcane so if you're following a strict sugar free diet, skip the rum

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