Comments (0) | Friday, May 30, 2008
Today I finally took a walk down Toorak Road on my lunch break after being told way too many times from a lady at work I must go and check out this lovely cafe that has the most beautiful cupcakes!
She didn't let me down! I even got a sandwich too and that was good!
Set in a gorgeous arcade away from the bustling traffic on Toorak Road, if only it was closer to where I work I'd be in there all the time!
Anyways I took some photos to share before I shared them =) enjoy!
South Yarra Arcade
Shop 5, 101 Toorak Road
South Yarra, VIC 3141
(03) 9820 4576
I loved the little case they came in for transportation!
Flavours: Vanilla, Tiramisu, White Chocolate Fudge, Carmel Fudge
Comments (0) | Thursday, May 29, 2008
First of all, excuse the dodgy pictures, I took them whilst I was at work, and fluorescent light sucks balls! (can I say that?... I guess so, it's my blog!)
So anyways, I ordered this book aaggggees ago from the US and it finally came today! I'm not too sure if I will be able to pull any of these designs off, will have to ask mum to help me. Just thought I'd share with you all :)
I also ordered a custom apron from America today too, hopefully it will come in the next few weeks!
Next on my wish list is the chef rabbid (from the video game Rayman Raving Rabbids), how can your resist them! They are too cute!
Comments (1) | Wednesday, May 28, 2008
Well I was plan on pad-thai-ing it up this week but my boy was too sick to come over for my mid-week cooking so I thought I'd change my plans. I made a sweet potato and pancetta risotto, which looked and tasted like the infamous clag! So needless to say I'm NOT posting picture or the recipe for that! Donna Hay let me down but then redeemed herself when I tried her milk chocolate chunk muffins!
Can you believe this chocoholic still has easter eggs! It's the crappy kind you don't really want to eat, so I got the Donna Hay chocolate book out for inspiration!
These are just so yum! They are not too sweet, and the chocolate chunks are so dreamy!
Have brought them into work to share with the crowd, and have been a hit so far!
Milk Chocolate Chunk Muffins
2 cups self-raising flour, sifted
1/3 cup cocoa powder, sifted
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup milk
1 cup chopped milk chocolate
1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
2. Place the flour, cocoa, baking powder and sugar into a bowl and mix to combine.
3. In a separate bowl, combine the eggs, vanilla, oil and milk and whisk together. Stir the egg mixture into the flour mixture until just combined.
4. Fold in the chocolate and spoon the mixture into 12 slot muffin tin lined with muffin cases.
5. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until cooked when tested with a skewer.
Comments (0) | Tuesday, May 27, 2008
Well not really, I have done a class in Phuket, and I have a certificate to prove it!
I did my course at Pum's Thai Restaurant & Cooking School.
I learnt Thai cooking from an Irish guy called Damiaan (yes, he spells his name with two a's). At the end of the lesson we were lucky enough to meet the master behind it all, Pum! She even signed my new cookbook =)
I have ordered her new cook book, so hopefully that shall arrive in the mail this week!
Going to be trying my skills with Pad Thai this week!
Comments (2) | Monday, May 26, 2008
Birthday cake for the birthday boy! I felt like making a cheesecake, so I gave him a choice of three. He chose this one. Taken from the Australian Woman's Weekly Cheesecakes cookbook (pg 30).
Recipe says to cook for 1 hour, however mine took 2 hours! After 1 hour it was moving around still, so I just kept baking it.
Other than that, it was delicious! Everyone loved it, thank goodness! I'm always a bit scared when I try a new recipe!
It was a bit weird as traditionally sticky date pudding is warm, but because it was a cheesecake it was cold. It tastes good with warm or cold caramel sauce, and is pretty hard to stuff up I think!
2 cups (280g) seeded dried dates
3/4 cup (180ml) water
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
750g cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup (110g) firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon mixed spice
1/3 cup (75g) firmly packed brown sugar
1/3 cup (80ml) cream
1. Preheat the oven to 160 degrees / 140degrees fan-forced. Grease 24cm springform tin; line the base and side with baking paper. Place tin on oven tray (I didn't do this)
2. Combine dates, the water and soda in small saucepan; bring to a boil, simmer for 5 minutes. Cool mixture 5 minutes; blend or process until almost smooth.
3. Beat cheese and sugar in medium bowl with electric mixer until smooth. Add spices, eggs and date mixture; beat until combined.
4. Pour mixture into tin; bake about 1 hour. Cool cheesecake in oven with door ajar.
5. Refrigerate cheesecake 3 hours or overnight.
6. Make caramel sauce; combine ingredients in a small saucepan; stir over low heat, until smooth. Bring to a boil; remove from heat.
7. Serve cheesecake drizzled with warm or cold sauce.
Comments (1) |
Where would you go if you were a man for your birthday?
A steak house of course! (unless you are vegetarian.... or don't like steak I guess...)
The first time we went to The Grill Room was for my boss' birthday 2 years ago, and we have been raving about it ever since! I didn't take a lot of photos as it was quite dark and didn't want to be that weirdo person taking photos of all their food with the flash going off every 2 seconds!
So finally we convinced my boyfriend's parents that we should go here for his birthday dinner, and they were very impressed!
St Kilda Road Towers
1 Queens Road
Albert Park VIC
(03) 9863 7700
I highly recommend getting the ribs as a starter. We ordered these, then about 2 minutes later they arrived at our table. I'm not too sure how they cook them but they just fall off the bone and melt so easily in your mouth!
All week I had been asking a few people about Wagyu beef as there is a recipe in the latest Delicious magazine that uses Wagyu beef. I found out that it wasn't cheap, so I kind of went off the idea that I would ever get to try it. To my delight, Wagyu beef was on the menu!... and it was sooooooo goood! I got the The Classic Grillroom Wagyu Beef Burger. I chose chips instead of a baked potato and got a side sauce called "Monkey Gland" which is a South African BBQ sauce.
It's hard to find good chips, but they were all so crunchy and perfect! Not oily at all.
I wish I had taken a photo of his mum's baked potato... it was the biggest potato I have EVER seen! Far far bigger than the size of my fist!
Comments (1) |
Saturday was my boyfriend's birthday, so there was ALOT of eating out over the weekend!
We decided to take a drive and try out a place I had heard about through work. We drove past and saw no one in the restaurant; generally not a good sign for me, but we decided to give it a try anyway, and were pleasantly surprised!
628 North Road
Ormond VIC 3204
(03) 9576 7222
I liked the plate!
( I didn't eat the pickles and I'm not a pickle fan!)
Comments (3) | Thursday, May 22, 2008
I was just going through some of my photos on my computer and came across some of my mum's fabulous cakes, and I wanted to share! She has been creating the most out of this world cake designs for my birthday over the years and more recently my cousins.
There is nothing this woman cannot do with fondant and food colouring!
... now if only we could find an easy way to transport them!
Love you mum! xxx
Comments (6) |
Mid week cooking was followed by me making a dessert, not a very common occurrence.
Taken from the latest Delicious magazine, these amazing delights are nice and cake like on the top, but explode with gooey chocolate when you eat them. I served mine with a vanilla and caramel ice-cream and couldn't get enough!
A nice wintery alternative to chocolate mousse. Will have to make this one for my friends when they come over next month for a dinner party.
Very easy to make, takes about 30 minutes to prepare and cook.
- 200g good-quality dark chocolate, roughly chopped
- 100g unsalted butter, chopped
- 3 eggs, lightly beaten
- 1/2 cup caster sugar
- 2 tbs plain flour, (sifted)
- cream or ice-cream to serve
2. Place the chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water until melted. Stir to just combine, then cool slightly.
3. Place the eggs, sugar and flour in a bowl and whisk until just combined.
4. Gradually whisk in the chocolate mixture, then pour the batter into the ramekins and place on a baking tray.
5. Bake in the oven for 12-15 minutes until the edges are set but the centre is soft.
6. Serve hot with cream or ice-cream.
Comments (2) | Wednesday, May 21, 2008
Mid week cooking was a success this week! I even decided to attempt a dessert as well from the latest Delicious magazine that arrived in my letterbox this week.
Huge hit at the dinner table. The recipe says to used 2 cans of Sirena tuna in oil, so I used one of the plain variety then thought I'd spice things up a little and get a can of the tuna in chilli oil for the other can. It added just the right amount of kick to make the dish come alive.
Didn't have any rocket, so used a little bit of normal lettuce from the greenhouse and it turned out just as well. We also didn't have any ripe lemons, so I used lime instead.
So easy, so tasty, can't wait to make this one again!
- 1L (4 cups) chicken or vegetable stock
- 2 x 185g cans Sirena Tuna in Oil
- 25g unsalted butter
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 400g arborio rice
- 1/2 cup (125ml) dry white wine
- 12 cherry tomatoes, halved
- 2 tbs roughly chopped basil leaves
- Zest of 1/2 a lemon, plus lemon wedges to serve
- 50g wild rocket
- 1 tbs chopped chives, to serve
2. Meanwhile, strain oil from tuna over a bowl and set tuna aside. Heat oil with butter in a large, deep frypan over medium-low heat. Cook onion for 2-3 minutes until soft.
3. Add garlic and rice, and stir well. Add wine and cook for 2 minutes.
4. Start adding stock a ladleful at a time, stirring constantly, making sure the first ladle of stock is absorbed before adding the next.
5. Once the rice is cooked, stir in tomato, basil, lemon zest, wild rocket and tuna, then season to taste. Top risotto with chives and serve with lemon wedges.
Comments (1) | Sunday, May 18, 2008
Couldn't be bothered going to the gym on Thursday, yet I somehow had motivation to bake...
Had some passionfruit sitting in the fruit bowl calling out my name (must be going insane if I can hear fruit talking to me).
Whipped out the Donna Hay fruit cookbook and found something with passionfruit!
ABSOLUTELY delicious! Work crew loved it, as did the family. If only there was more to go around!
125g butter, softened
1 cup caster sugar
1 cup sour cream
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 tablespoon lemon rind
2.5 cups self raising flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2/3 cup passionfruit pulp
2/3 cup caster sugar
1 cup water
1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
2. Place the butter and caster sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat until light and creamy.
3. Add the eggs and beat well. Mix through the sour cream, lemon juice, rind, flour and baking powder.
4. Spoon the mixture into a lightly greased 23cm round cake tin lined with non-stick baking paper. Bake for 40 minutes or until cooked when tested with a skewer. Leave the cake in the tin for 5 minutes then place on a rack over a plate.
5. To make the passionfruit syrup, place the passionfruit, sugar and water into a saucepan. Cook over low heat, stirring until the sugar is dissolved, then increase the heat and boil the syrup for 4-5 minutes or until it thickens slightly (mine took forever, I ended up adding more sugar to make it thick).
6. Pour the syrup over the top of the hot cake. Allow the cake to stand for 5 minutes, then serve with the remaining syrup.
Comments (0) |
Mid week cooking this week was resulted in cooking parma. Didn't have a recipe, so it was a bit of an improvisation, turned out very well, didn't have that fatty pub-parma taste either! I was a bit upset with myself because I should have had a beer for my boyfriend... you can't have a parma without a beer!
Mum loved the fact that it was such a cheap meal. She must have bought the biggest chicken breasts ever. I'm talking the Pamela Anderson of chickens, we only used 2 chicken breasts between the 4 of us, and we were all full at the end of it!
Since I didn't really have a recipe, I'll try to remember what i did!
To make the schnitzel:
1. Pound the chicken with a meat pounder
2. Coat the chicken in flour
3. Then coat the chicken in whisked egg
4. Coat the chicken in mix of: bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, salt & pepper.
5. Fry in oil and drain on paper towel
To make the parma:
1. Take your schnitzel, and place it on a baking tray
2. Spoon over some warm tomato pasta sauce (homemade or bottled. Leggo's have a parma sauce)
3. Place a slice of ham on top of the sauce
4. Top with mozzarella and parmesan cheese and put in the oven or under the grill until the cheese melts.
Whatever takes your fancy: chips, salad, mash potato, or pasta
Comments (0) |
This was the other cake I mentioned in my previous post!
Taken from the internet a while ago, I printed it in put in it my "to make" pile.
Haven't tasted it yet, but it smells so good!
100g caster sugar
80g softened, unsalted butter
300g sifted self-raising flour
1 level teaspoon of cinnamon powder
1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees and grease a 20cm-wide tin with softened butter (I lined my tin with baking paper, much easier to clean up). Dust the greased surface with a little flour.
2. Beat together eggs, caster sugar and honey until the mixture is pale and fluffy.
3. Add butter, and beat in. Add flour, cinnamon, and the flesh of 3 apples, peeled, cored and cut into 1cm pieces. Mix gently, or at a low speed if using a mixer.
4. Spoon the mixture into the cake tin and place in the over for about 45-55 minutes, making sure it is completely cooked in the middle before removing: test with a skewer - it should have no uncooked dough attached to it. Remove from the tin and cool on a cake rack.
Serve with caramelised apple sauce and some cream or ice-cream if desired.
Comments (0) |
Being bored on a Sunday can make for a very productive time in the kitchen!
Going out tonight with my boyfriend, my bestfriend and her boyfriend! We are going out to celebrate the boys' birthdays, so I decided to make 2 cake options, so I can share with my parents as well.
Started off with a recipe I found in mum's folder of recipes she hasn't tried yet. The are supposed to be decorated with sugar flowers but who could be bothered doing that! I wasn't going to even go near the shops today!
They are not too lemony, hope everyone likes them!
(best made on the day of serving)
1/4 cup caster sugar
2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
1/3 cup plain flour
60g butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence
12 sugar flowers, for decoration, optional
1 cup icing sugar mixture
1 teaspoon soft butter
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1. Preheat to oven to hot 200 degrees fan forced. Grease and flour a 12-hole madeleine pan or tart tray.
2. Beat the egg and sugar in a small bowl with an electric mixer until thick and creamy. Add rind; fold in sifted flour, then butter an essence.
3. Drop about 1 tablespoon of mixture into the prepared pans. Bake in a hot oven for about 8 minutes or until browned lightly.
4. Stand for 3 minutes before turning onto a wire rack to cool.
5. Glace Icing: sift the icing sugar into a medium heatproof bowl, then stir in butter and juice to form a paste. Place the bowl over a small saucepan of simmering water and stir until the icing is a pouring consistency.
6. Brush the Glace Icing immediately over the madeleines on a wire rack over a tray. Press on the sugar flowers and allow to stand until set.
Comments (1) | Sunday, May 11, 2008
My mid-week cooking came from the latest Delicious magazine (May 2008, pg. 32).
I put my boyfriend in charge of cooking the pasta as I worked on everything else. Was truly delicious and will definitely be making it again!
extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 long red chilli, deseeded, thinly sliced
6 basil springs, leaves picked, stalks finely chopped
400g peeled green prawns, roughly chopped
2 handfuls cherry tomatoes, roughly chopped
Cook pasta in a large pan of boiling salted water according to packet instructions.
Meanwhile, heat a large, deep frypan over medium heat and add a splash of extra virgin olive oil. Add the garlic and chopped chilli and cook with the basil stalks for 1-2 minutes until garlic is lightly browned. Add prawns and fry for 1-2 minutes until pink and almost cooked through. Add the tomatoes and season well with salt and pepper. Simmer for 1-2 minutes until tomatoes softens.
Drain the cooked pasta, then add to the frypan and toss to combine. Sprinkle with basil leaves (roughly torn if large) and serve immediately.
Comments (3) | Saturday, May 3, 2008
Lessons we have learnt from today's experience in the kitchen.
1. Read the instructions.
2. Re-read the instruction.
3. Read them once more just in case you forgot to read STEP 1.
4. Maybe type up the instructions first so you know exactly what you are doing!
5. Don't be greedy and try to make 24 little cupcakes instead of the full sized 12.
Apple custard tea cakes
- 90g butter
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup caster sugar
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 cup self-raising flour
- 1/4 cup custard powder
- 2 tablespoon milk
- 1 large unpeeled apple, cored, sliced finely
- 30g butter, extra melted
- 1 tablespoon caster sugar, extra
- 1/2 teapsoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon custard powder
1 tablespoon caster sugar
1/2 cup milk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Make custard (blend custard powder and sugar with milk and extract in small saucepan; stir over heat until mixture boils and thickens. Remove from heat; cover surface with plastic wrap; cool.
2. Preheat over to moderate (180 degree or 160 degree fan forced). Line 12-hole standard muffin pan with paper cases.
3. Beat butter, extract, sugar, eggs, flour, custard powder and milk in small bowl with electric mixer on low speed until ingredients are just combined. Increase speed to medium, beat until mixture is changed to a paler colour.
4. Divide half the mixture among cases. Top with custard, then remaining cake mixture; spread mixture to cover custard. Top with apple slices, pressing slightly into cake.
5. Bake large cakes about 40 mins. small cakes about 30 mins.
6. Brush hot cakes with extra butter, then sprinkle with combined extra sugar and cinnamon. Turn cakes onto wire rack. Serve warm or cold.
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