Monday, 31 December 2018

Oliebollen and appelflappen

My Dutch Opa used to make these every year on New Years Eve. This year, my son and I made them together for the first time.


500 g of self raising flour
0.5 litre of milk
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of sugar
1 egg
100g raisins (or currants/sultanas)
1 litre of cooking oil
Icing sugar


  1. Sift the flour into a bowl, make a hole in the centre and pour in half of the milk, the salt and the sugar. 
  2. Stir with a wooden spoon to create a smooth batter. 
  3. Next, beat the egg together with the rest of the milk and stir into the batter. 
  4. Stir in the raisins so they are relatively evenly-spread.
  5. Cover the batter with a damp tea towel and leave in a warm place for about an hour. 
  6. After an hour you are ready to begin frying. The batter will be quite sticky. (Do not stir the batter any more). 
  7. Heat the cooking oil in a large saucepan or deep fryer – you will know it is hot enough when smoke begins to rise or when you dip a spoon into the oil and it forms bubbles. (If the oil is too hot, the first oliebollen will cook fast on the outside but still be uncooked on the inside - if this happens, turn the oil off for a few minutes).
  8. Create round balls using two tablespoons of the batter and drop one by one into the pan of oil. 
  9. Fry for about 6-8 minutes or until a light golden colour. If the oil temperature is right, and the size of the ball is right, the oliebollen should automatically turn themselves over.
  10. Drain on paper towel to remove any excess oil. 
  11. Sprinkle the oliebollen generously with icing sugar and serve hot or cold.


As far as I remember, Opa used the same batter (minus the raisins) for appleflappen. We didn't attempt them this year but we'll definitely be having a go next year!

Additional ingredients:

6 Granny Smith (green cooking) apples
Ground cinnamon


  1. Prepare the batter as above.
  2. Peel and core the apples and cut each into 4-5 slices.
  3. Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon and leave for 15 minutes.
  4. Coat the slices of apple with the batter and fry them, a few at a time, until golden brown.
  5. Drain on paper towel to remove any excess oil. 
  6. Sprinkle with icing sugar and serve hot or cold.


Tuesday, 27 November 2018

Recommended Read: High score, low pay: why the gig economy loves gamification

Really interesting #longread on how industry is using #gamification to "incentivise" workers - I'm more inclined to describe it as "manipulate" but anyway...

Wednesday, 7 November 2018

Recommended Read: What's an arts degree really worth?

For me, it's been incredibly valuable.

"Increasingly, the business world is realising that the skills of most value in the new economy will be those of critical and analytical thinking, communication and interpersonal skills – skills that humanities subjects deliver in spades."

Thursday, 1 November 2018

Recommended Read: Say no to meetings! And 3 other ideas to keep your workplace happy and healthy

Some good ideas here. I like reading stuff like this to remind me that it's OK to shut the phone off and just focus on one thing at a time.

"There are lots of ways to slice 60 minutes.

1 × 60 = 60
2 × 30 = 60
4 × 15 = 60
25 + 10 + 5 + 15 + 5 = 60

All of the above equal 60, but they’re different kinds of hours. The number might be the same, but the quality isn’t. The quality hour we’re after is 1 × 60."

Wednesday, 5 September 2018

"Well, yes, we CAN do that - but a better question is, SHOULD we?"

One of my favourite questions to ask in the tech world is:

"Well, yes, we CAN do that - but a better question is, SHOULD we?"

This article brought that to mind for me.

"The future of web design is no longer about what we can do, but rather about what we should do. That means being considerate about how design can affect the people who use it, and designing websites that result in positive experiences for users."

A nostalgic journey through the evolution of web design:

Thursday, 19 April 2018

Presentation: "Website Protection - Joomla Security and Backups"

Last night I was very pleased to chat with Nic from Akeeba Ltd, during a Melbourne Joomla User Group presentation on Joomla Website Security and Backups.

It was a great meetup with lots of good discussions and questions.

There's a transcript of the "Top 10 Security Tips" and the slides at