Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The C salad (a)

it was one of those days. when you dont want to get out of bed. when you move and every part of your body feels like lead. i didnt want to do anything. i didnt want to see anyone. i wanted to crawl into bed and cry. noone had messaged me all day and i was feeling unloved. i wanted my mum. and a cuddle. instead, i got simone.

simone running buddy, my festival friend, my drinking mate, my coffee loving big hearted smiles aplenty crazy ideas no holds barred one of my best friends (oh WOW i can change colours??!!) oh, and shes also my guinea pig that tries most of the meals i post on here :) and to my disgust, on this crap day, she was coming round for a walk and dinner. i didnt want to see anyone and i definitely didnt want to run. i messaged and she said too bad. she was almost at my house. so...i did it. put my shoes on, got dressed (yes i had been wearing pjs all day) and pulled some chicken out of the freezer to marinate. i had no idea what to make, but, by the end of a walk to the river where we watched the sun set, i had a pretty basic idea of....the C salad.

now, i've called this the C salad because most of the main ingredients start with C. and because you dont need an A+ in home ec to make it. in fact, i think it would be a great staple meal. oh and the photo is not particularly crash hot. i was hungry and couldnt hold the camera still. trust me, it tastes waaaay better than it looks.

The C salad (feeds two very hungry girls or three not so hungry girls)

1 thigh fillet chicken
4 tbspns oil
1 tspn lemon zest
pinch salt
sprinkle cracked black pepper
1/4 tspn cumin, coriander
1/2 tspn chilli
juice of 1/4 lemon (ok it doesnt start with C but its part of the CITRUS family)
2 cups cooked cous cous (see tips for easiest way to do this)
1 baby zucchini (aka Courgette)
1/8 of a butternut pumpkin
10 string beans
1/4 block feta (Cheese haha)
handful pine nuts
splash (about 4 tbspns) balsamic vinegar
fresh coriander

Before going for exercise, cut chicken into bite sized pieces. place oil, lemon zest/juice, salt, pepper, cumin, coriander and chilli into bowl. place chicken in bowl and mix around so chicken is coated. cover and store in fridge until ready to use.
Cook cous cous and place in large bowl. Heat frypan and chuck pine nuts in. lightly cook (about 2 minutes). chuck chicken into pan (it will spit so be careful) and cook. while chicken is cooking, slice zucchini and pumpkin thinly and chop beans into 1/4s. Place in container, cover, and cook for 2 minutes in the microwave. dont forget to keep an eye on the chicken. Mix pinenuts into cous cous. add cooked vegetables and mix into cous cous. crumble feta into cous cous mix and stir well. splash balsamic vinegar overtop. chicken should be done by now.
serve cous cous salad with chicken ontop. add fresh coriander to decorate

Quickest way to cook about 1 cup cous cous: boil kettle. measure 2/3 cup cous cous into a bowl. pour 2/3 cup boiling water over cous cous. add pinch salt, mix with fork and cover. leave to stand for 5 minutes. stir with fork to separate grains. if its still too 'wet' or clumpy, chuck it into the microwave for about 2 minutes!! no pots/pans needed!!! YAY
use asparagus instead of beans. use same cooking method
add about 10 halved cherry tomatoes to the salad for a splash of colour
dont have time to cook chicken? pick up a cooked chook from the shops and tear meat into bite sized pieces to mix through the salad

p.s im feeling waay better now. maybe due to exercise, mostly due to simone (xoxo love) and definitely due to the bowl of icecream i consumed for dessert :)

Thursday, February 18, 2010


Lent started yesterday.

You're all probably wondering what lent has to do with food. Well, as it turns out, quite alot. If you look, most religious celebrations are centred around food. As a Christian, I focus primarily on those celebrations, but there are many others...Bahais fast, as do Muslims for certain periods of the year. Jewish people only eat food prepared a certain way, Hindus usually dont eat meat...and the list goes on. Food in religion is used for self-denial and celebration, and is central to many religions.

Lent is a period of 40 days before Easter (traditionally beginning on Ash Wednesday) that symbolises a period of preparation before the death of Christ (Easter). It involves prayer, penitence and self-denial and is said to imitate the time Jesus spent in the desert being tempted by Satan.

pretend cat = Jesus. and cheeseburger = food

So heres the interesting fact for the day. Traditionally, Lent meant just one meal a day, and no eggs, meat, butter or milk. Now, the day before Ash Wednesday (ie:the start of lent) is called Pancake Tuesday. Three guesses why....

The main ingredients in pancakes are: eggs, butter, milk. SO, back in the old days, people would feast on pancakes for a day (SWEET) to use up all the food they wouldnt be able to eat over Lent!! COOL HUH???


These days, rules are a bit less strict (one meal a day????) and many Christians are encouraged to abstain from something that they take pleasure in. Its all about DISCIPLINE When i was little, this was usually TV (but it was never really re-enforced). Also, to focus on prayer during our daily life.

So, why am I telling you all this? I decided to give up something for Lent. For Lent, there will be no desserts. cakes, cupcakes, tiramisu, muffins, slices, pies, chocolate, meringues, cheesecakes and lollies. For those that know me...these are my pleasures. I know that every time I pass up these delicious treats i will be reminded of what i believe in! And I will prove to myself that i can be DISCIPLINED!


What does this mean for you? Probably a reduction in 'sweet' posts...oh i can still bake it, just not eat it...and probably an extension into icecream...the one treat i have allowed myself. but i dont plan on buying any soon - want to see how long i last!
Also, I encourage anyone who hasnt already given up something, to get their A into G and have a try at doing something for someone who has really done so much for us - or even just prove to themselves that they can have DISCIPLINE in their life!

GBU xo


Friday, February 12, 2010

Caramelised Pears (a)

Dear reader. i would like you to meet my TOT (train of thought). last night, it went something like this:

hmmm need to make dessert. what do i have. leftover meringue. what can i have with meringue...ICECREAM....damn, i ate that last night. yoghurt, i have yoghurt. oh and look, theres a tin of passionfruit. hmmm meringue topped with yoghurt and passionfruit. oh, lets grate some chocolate ontop too. oh wait, i have tinned pears. i wonder what would happen if i fried the pear. oh, what about if i caramelise them. what about, caramelised pear and yoghurt. oh and meringue. shit. how do i caramelise. butter and brown sugar in a pan sounds good. ok. shit. the butter is burning. take it off the heat, stir in brown sugar. how much. who cares. that looks about right. lets chuck the pears in.

hmm looks alright. i reckon it needs vanilla essence. wow. that looks pretty good. it looks like i think its supposed to look. ok, onto a plate. wow. that tastes awesome. WOOOOO. have to blog this.

so...with thanks to my TOT i present....

Caramelised Pears (for two)

1 tub of yoghurt (i had low fat apricot, but i would recommend a thick vanilla)
2 meringues (see previous recipe: mini pavalovas - posted Jan)
2 pear halves (just from a tin)
3 tbspns brown sugar
50g butter
3 tbspns pear juice
1 tspn vanilla essence.

Place a small saucepan on the stovetop - lowest heat setting. Place butter in pan and melt, stirring until frothy. add the brown sugar and stir (at this stage, the butter and brown sugar were still seperated) take off heat and add pear juice (watch out coz it will spit if its too hot) stir, and it should make a smooth brown sauce. add the pears and spoon sauce over the pears. let it simmer on very low heat for about 5 minutes. add vanilla essence. remove from heat and let it sit.
In two dessert bowls, spoon half the yoghurt. place a pear on the side, and spoon syrup overtop. break meringue and arrange overtop.

Like i said, i had the pan waaaay too hot, and it spit everywhere, so use a very low heat setting, or remove the pan from the heat once the brown sugar is added and put it back on the heat after the pears are added.
For a more decadent dessert, use really really good icecream or thick yoghurt
You dont need meringue, i just had leftover to use!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Beef Stir Fry (a)

I like stir fry. i think in a former life i was asian. i get withdrawl when i dont eat asian for a while, i can eat m'n'ms with chopsticks and i like rice. anyways, back to stir fry, i tend to make it on three occasions:

1) when i have alot of random vegetables in my fridge that need to be used
2) when i have to make food fast for alot of people
3) when i need to restock the freezer

its pretty easy to make an edible stir fry. but to make an AMAZING

(im actually not overreacting here, it was unbelievably good)
stir fry (only takes 20 minutes to make), you need this recipe here....

(best ever) Beef Stir Fry (feeds 5 people easy)

400-450g beef strips
1/4 c soy sauce
6-7 tbspns lime juice (i just gave it a good couple of splashes)
1/2 c water
1 tspn garlic
1/2 tspn chilli (fresh is best, but i used jar chilli and garlic, worked well)

1 head of broccoli
15-20 string beans
1 carrot
2 sticks celery
1/4 of a pumpkin
1 baby zucchini
4-5 mushrooms
4-5 tbspns fish sauce
2-3 tbspns soy sauce (approx values, i just splashed it around the pan a couple of times)
crushed peanuts

enough rice to feed however many people you had (in my case, 2)

About 2 hours before cooking (or before you go to work) place the meat in a large bowl along with the soy sauce, water, lime juice, garlic and chilli. Mix well and leave to marinate in the fridge. (trust me, marinating the meat MAKES the stir fry)

Start cooking the rice (i use a microwave rice cooker...BEST INVENTION EVER). Preheat a frypan. Chop the broccoli, cut the ends off the beans and cut into thirds, slice the carrot, celery, pumkin and zucchini thinly and quarter the mushrooms. Place a little bit of oil in the bottom of the frypan, drain the marinade from the meat, and chuck the meat in the frypan. Stir, and cook the meat for about 5 minutes. You may need to drain extra juice from the frypan (this speeds things up). Add all the vegetables to the pan, stir and place a lid on the frypan. leave for 5 minutes (may need to stir a couple of times so it doesnt burn). Take lid off, and stir - cooking, for an extra 5 minutes. Add the soy sauce and fish sauce, stir well. Rice should be done by now, so place rice and stir fry in bowl. sprinkle with a few chopped nuts!


Store leftover stir fry in small portions in the freezer. for an easy dinner remove, defrost, heat and serve (if you didnt freeze the rice (YES IT DOES WORK!) cous cous is a good alternative)
Add as many different vegetables as you like. Add more or less. Change the veges. EMBRACE the vege revolution and go to town! Use red capsicum, orange carrot, yellow squash, green beans and purple eggplant for a rainbow stir fry for the kids!

and im off to eat leftovers for dinner...yum!!!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

King St Cafe (a)

so. i totally wanted to talk about what i made for dinner last night. unfortunately, the photos look horrendous, so i wont talk about what i ate for dinner last night. i will however, talk about king st. because i promised :)

king st. that haven of delicacies. of amazingly high ceilings and lazy fans. of cafe music and beautiful flower arrangements. of big brass things. of wooden tables and of heavy chairs. of open windows and window flowers. of icy cold water, amazing coffee and a wine list the likes of which i have never seen. of fancy food names and intellectual reading material. but most importantly, of the cakes, tarts, slices, meringues, cupcakes, muffins, cheesecakes and biscuits that i feast on regularly. ive tried them all...go on, test me.

and a note to my future love interest....take me here (without being told, just on proof that you know me like no other) and i will love you forever.

located at 44 King St, just east of the middle of perth, its a short walk to sugar or caffeine (whatever floats your boat) after a hard days shopping. another grand thing about its location, is the most amazing shoe store across the road (Zomp), Kookai right next door, and not to mention, Tiffanys, Swatch, LV, Wheels and Dollbaby and Wasteland.

i have always been determined to try a meal at king st. however, multipule attempts (ie: graduation present, dinner with friends) have been thwarted. and so, (until future love interest figures it out), i stick to going to king st for cake with people i love.

so why do i love king st? mostly for the cake. sitting at the back of a large room is the cake cabinet - two sides, usually filled with about 10 cakes (see the pic above) are a few of my favs:
  • mixed berry cheesecake smooth creamy ricotta based cheesecake with a soft base and jellied fruits that provide the most delicate fruit flavour to the cheesecake part - only serving to enhance it. have with cream.
  • baked banana cheesecake without becoming floury, a drier cream version of the berry cheesecake intensely flavoured with (real) banana and topped with a layer of ganache that not only tastes great but highlights the banana
  • french apple pie recommend warm. made with huge chunks of apple (not sauced up) and enclosed in a buttery pastry, this is the best apple pie you will ever taste. each bite contains a hit of cinnamon. great on a cold day
  • scillian apple cake slightly apple flavoured heavier cake the top of which is sliced apple, raisins and pinenuts. a nutty, fruity cake, also great warmed up on a cold day.
  • chocolate souffle tart an amazing tart base with a layer of crunchy and gooey praline topped with a light dark chocolate souffle. definitely needs cream.
  • apricot and almond tart has only recently topped the cheesecake for my favourite cake. again, the amazing tart base, a layer of creamy custard topped with an almond cake layer (tastes like a friand) and topped with halved apricots that are plump and juicy. CREAM!
  • cherry pie almost as good as my babcias (grandmas), the base is topped with a good layer of custard and then an amazing tart very deeply cherry flavoured jelly. if anything, the cherry flavour is too intense! to be eaten in small amounts, with cream.
  • banoffie pie oh gosh...banoffie pie...again, that base, filled with a caramel custard that oozes out with every forkful and layered with fresh banana and held together with a jelly. so so good.
  • lemon meringue pie definitely worth a try. the middle is a tart, sour face pulling lemon curd and ontop, the lightest, highest meringue that feels like you are eating air but balances so well with the heavier sourer curd to send tastebuds craaazy!!!

finally, i guess you want to know about the coffee. king st does great coffee! comes with almond biscotti, or the hot chocolate with marshmellows. its a well made coffee, good flavour, nice creamy milk and not too hot. and well presented.

so there you have it. the cakes at king st, the coffee and a little about the ambiance. as for service, i wouldnt commend it. at times slow, be prepared to wait, you might be pleasantly surprised (yes i have had some good ones-avoid the busier days). its table service, so grab a good spot as soon as you get in, and then check out the cakes/menu. pay at the door as you head out. oh, and the price? expensive-ish, cakes are $6.90-$7.80 and food is $25 + but it is very very much worth it.

oh, and if anyone is coming to perth, or wants to try it out, hit me up...i'd be glad to take you :D

p.s i just had cake at king st. highly exciting news: the pastry chef is trying out some new recipes...all the more reason to go back!!

Monday, February 8, 2010

no, this is NOT a weight loss scheme advert. [k]

About two and a bit weeks ago, I was on the Daniel's fast - a diet that is based on the biblical example of Daniel and his friends, who basically ate a true vegetarian diet and water for 10 days. Please note this was a choice based on personal reasons completely unrelated to any desire for weight loss/detoxing...hence the title of this blog. Anyway, the key point, is that avoiding certain foods/grains that happened to form A LOT of what I would usually eat.. ie. WHEAT products... meant I had to go looking for other ways of cooking up the various other foods out there. Thank God for the internet storehouse of online recipes!

Its amazing what you do when forced to explore out of your 'comfort' zone.

...and so I happened upon this hearty salad recipe from the most beautiful food mag of all time - Gourmet Traveller. For those unfamiliar with this mag, its name is true - Gourmet - and thus can showcase some pretty exquisite or just simply different recipes inspired from all over the world. At first reading of this recipe you (as I was) may be a little apprehensive, but trust me, just go for it! I did and I ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT! 

Don't be put off by the fact its a 'salad' coz really its about as salad-y as a pasta/rice/potato salad is. The recipe is exactly how it is in the mag, but you can definitely play around with the amounts of spices and fresh herbs etc.
Anyway have a go, savour the unique marriage of sweet and savoury notes... and hit me back with an invite to your next cookup. 

Carrot and barley salad with 
dates and raisins

300 gm pearl barley
1 tsp each coriander and cumin seeds, 
dry-roasted coarsely pounded in a mortar and pestle (effort much? i used ground versions)
3 carrots
1/4 cup pine nuts (i used walnuts)
1/4 cup sultanas, soaked in warm water for 5 mins, drained
Juice of 1 lemon & 1 orange (i also cut up one orange into bit size pieces - highly recommended!)
1/2 tsp sweet paprika (i just used normal paprika)
1/4 tsp ground turmeric
1 bunch coriander, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup (firmly packed) flat-leaf parsley, coarsely chopped
1 tsp red wine vinegar
2 tsp EVOO

1. Cook barley in boiling salted water until tender (20-30mins). Drain, transfer to a bowl and set aside to cool.
2. Meanwhile, combine spices with remaining ingredients in a bowl, toss to combine. Add barley, season to taste, toss to combine, serve.

Friday, February 5, 2010

white chocolate chunk brownies (a)

haha just had a little giggle over miss k's posts.
she pretty much summed it all up so i'll stick to what i do best...MORE RECIPES!

tonight i'm going to the outdoor cinemas with my 'other' family...which consists of my aunt, uncle and 3 cousins. my aunty has pretty supported me through uni by making dinner for me every sunday night and ensuring that i get a good start to the uni week. so a shout out to aunty w :) LOVE YOU!! i'm sure it put my mums mind at ease too, knowing that at least one night a week i was eating a proper meal.

anyways, outdoor cinemas = picnic food. picnic food has 3 qualitites:
1) can be eaten cold
2) can be eaten without cutlery or plates
3) can be made in large quantities and s h a r e d

not having ingredients for anything savory, i decided to stick with dessert (funny that) and in homage to my mum, made her white choc chunk brownies (with a twist) these brownies are heavenly. absolutely MOORISH. and easy.

White choc chunk brownies

220g of duo chocolate (the cadbury brand with half milk and half dark choc)
150g butter
1/4c castor sugar
2 eggs
2 tspns vanilla essence
1/3 c plain flour
1/4 c SR flour
100g white chocolate, roughly chopped
1/2 c pecans roughly chopped

Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Line a slice tin with baking paper. Melt butter and dark chocolate in microwave. Stir in sugar. Mix in eggs one at a time (make sure the chocolate mix isnt too hot or you will end up cooking the eggs!). add vanilla essence and mix. sift in flours and mix well. fold through white chocolate and pecans. Pour batter into prepared tin and bake in oven for 30-35 minutes or until skewer comes out clean.
Leave to cool on cake rack and slice into 3x3 squares when cool.
Serve as is, or for a dessert, with fudge sauce and icecream. mmmmmm.

Use dark chocolate instead of duo for a more bitter brownie
Use macadamias/almonds/cashews for variations in the nuts
Skip the nuts and add 3 tbspns of wet coffee for a mocha brownie (note: i havent tried that i just think it would work really really well)
If you dont have the right size tin: use rice to fill one end (see photo below - like i did) innovation!

I'm making banana pancakes, pretend like its the weekend now... [k]

When I get the time, I LOVE putting that little bit more effort into breakfast. Not that these options are difficult to make per se, but rather, extra effort with respect to the ingredients to use, the presentation, and the people - its most fun when others are around. Lazy breakfasts with friends = the perfect way to start a day.

There's an idea. WANTED: Breakfast club members

Whenever I bake, I'm always looking at ways to make the recipe a bit more... 'wholesome'. I can't help it, its the dietitian in me - but don't worry, my inner gastronome will make sure that texture and taste isn't compromised. And so far so good. This banana pancake recipe is fantastic - its similar to the versions I found off another fantastic food blog ( and some martha steward site.
In case you're new to some ingredients - here's a bit of background:

  • Wholemeal flour - made from the whole grain; hence the brown 'flakes' in the flour, which you just return to the mix after sifting the flour. I find it makes baked products a bit more denser with a 'nuttier' flavour. For some recipes, it is best used in combination with plain wheat flour (ie. white flour) to prevent the end product being too heavy or dry.
  • Buttermilk - often there is the misconception that buttermilk is milk high in fat and buttery. This couldn't be further from the truth! Buttermilk is the residual liquid which remains after butter is churned, ie. milk from the butter. Thus it is actually lower in fat because the fat has been taken out to make the butter! Buttermilk is slightly sour, reminiscent of yoghurt and has a slightly thicker consistency than normal milk. 

    (don't worry, I didn't eat them all myself)

    ------ Banana Buttermilk Pancakes 
    • ¾ cup wholemeal flour
    • ¼ cup plain flour
    • 2 teaspoons baking powder
    • ½ teaspoon baking soda
    • 2 heaped tablespoons of caster sugar/light brown sugar
    • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 40g butter, melted
    • 300ml buttermilk
    • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
    • 1 very ripe banana, mashed * see notes
    • sliced banana and maple syrup, to serve

    1. In a large bowl, sift and combine the flours, baking powder, baking soda, sugar and cinnamon.
    2. In another bowl or jug, combine the melted butter, egg, buttermilk and mashed banana. Make a 'well' in the middle of the dry ingredients. Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients and whisk until just combined.
    3. Heat a large non-stick frying pan over moderate heat, spray lightly with cooking oil spray and pour 1/4 cup of batter into the pan - often I use a large serving spoon to approximate the batter measurementDepending on the size of your frying pan, you can cook more pancakes simultaneously. When bubbles are formed evenly over the surface, flip over and cook for a further 20 seconds or so.
    4. Once all your pancakes are ready, top them with sliced banana and serve with maple syrup.
    * Notes
     - The riper the banana the better. How can you tell? Strong banana smell, lots of black spots on the banana skin, and a little too mushy to be eaten by itself. If the banana is leaking weird smelling juices - I'd probably say its a lil too ripe.
      - Martha Stewart suggests, instead of adding mashed banana to the batter, add sliced banana to the pancakes whilst they are cooking in the fry pan. This way, the banana nicely caramelises, and are evenly distributed over the pancakes. I say, combined them BOTH! the more banana the better I reckon.

    RAWRRRR! ..easy tigerrr.... [k]

    if you know me well, you know just HOW badly I have wanted to go to tiger tiger cafe! like real bad. Why? because I've only heard rave reviews about its 
    "awesome laneway location"

    "funky decor and atmosphere"
    "goooooooood coffee". 
    It can be dangerous hearing such can set your expectation for a place sky high.

    so finally, I popped my Tiger Tiger cafe cherry (yes, first time - the rest of u got punk'd on fb) and went yesterday - and what better occasion than to have an epic catchup with my other half, over our favourite meal of the day; breakfast!

    Tiger Tiger is cute! in a funky kinda way. As you walk down the laneway, the morning sun peeps through the outdoor patio-style covers; wooden tables and benches are arranged casually, with the odd vintage chair or two. Being a midweek morning, and its CBD location the usual work crowd was there getting their caffeine fix, but Tiger Tiger attracts people of all sorts.

    Onto the food - the menu is simple, short and sweet. You've got the usual beans/egg/toast options, yoghurt & granola, fruit toast - OH but then they put a nice twist on it by having a few unique options... such as the chicken, bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich - ally t's choice. Thick pieces of bread, moist chicken with mayo-style sauce, decent amount of veg - it was a big breakfast, presented well.

    I was feeling a bit more traditional this morning, and opted for an egg option. Btw, Alex doesn't do eggs, and I don't do bacon, so if the opportunity every arose, we would totally make the perfect pair to share eggs and bacon for breakfast - win-win situation!

    My breakfast - 2 poached eggs, with salmon on sourdough. Ok, so it doesn't look pretty like ally's but, here, with three of my fav foods for breakfast I had to try it! Also, its a pretty simple breakfast - so I wanted to test quality. Soft poached eggs, with runny yolk? check. Slight tangy aftertaste of the sourdough? This is crucial! and...check! ever so slight, but definitely there! which is hard to say for so many other 'sourdoughs' i've come across. Thick crispy slices were added to the enjoyment! Unfortunately, I didn't really rate the salmon - it was probably the same type of salmon you buy in those sealed packets from the supermarkets. Nothing wrong with that per se - tastes fine, and plus, to my knowledge, large amounts of cold, ready to eat salmon isn't readily available any other way, except if you want salmon for sashimi ($$$). So taste was fine, texture was smooth, but nothing out of the ordinary. You obviously pay extra for the salmon, yet seemed like it was plonked on the bottom of the plate, under the bread and eggs (I moved the salmon for the sake of the picture). I'm a big believer in the saying 'you eat with your eyes'...the way food is presented can impact our enjoyment of the meal - adding to the whole experience, or detracting from it. Believe me, I enjoyed my breakfast, it was tasty; yet how hard would it be to arrange the bread on the plate, pile the eggs on top and balance it out with the salmon, finished off with a sprinkling of fresh dill or parsley. Visually enhanced, eye pleasing food - I personally enjoy taking time to appreciate such 'art', and then go on to continue my appreciation for the dish's flavours and textures.

    Ohhh.. its getting late, and there's so much more to say! But, I must comment on the coffee.. and i'll keep it short. Honestly, I was disappointed. I grabbed a takeaway soy flat white after breakfast, and .. ahh I'm feeling sad just thinking about it! The coffee had an almost sour after tang to it - something that I expect from sourdough not coffee! and no, the milk wasn't off. UGH and it was WATERY!! not strong enough AT ALL. ok I don't wanna talk about it anymore - it was just...bad. Perth has some pretty decent coffee places, so you gotta be good to be in the game.

    All in all, did Tiger Tiger hit the mark? or was it all just hype? Yes, for the funky, cute and quaint cafe that serves up tasty food, decent portions at affordable prices. No, for the weird, unexpected coffee experience.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010

    shout - outs

    Just a short and sweet post to say 


    Thankyou everyone for reading, commenting, posting (yes THANKS ALEX for posting all but 2 of the blog posts), and hopefully trying out the recipes or cafes that we've written about..

    We feel there's really something special about the foodlovers community - and who knows, hopefully one day cafe couture will become a reality ... 

    and then YOU ALL will be the ones dining on some SWEET AS food.

    Continuing to tickle your foodie-bone,
    miss k & ally t

    Wednesday, February 3, 2010

    choocolate cupcakes with coffe icing (a)

    Its robs birthday...(well it was on monday)


    and i kinda managed to convince him that dinner with mates would be a great way to celebrate turning 23. originally, i offered to cook dinner, but this turned into a celebration at his house. i was a bit cut that i couldnt cook for him, but, i was asked to bring sweets (again) at about 1 hour before i had to catch the bus to get there. knowing that berti was a fan of coffee, i thought chocolate cupcakes with coffee icing would be the perfect addition to dinner...whatever it was. i also didnt have enough time to make a cake.

    (changes to post: this was written about 3 wks later...) i thought i didnt have a photo of my cupcakes, but berti, amazing as he is, took a photo (with his amazing camera hence it looks so good) and even got it printed for me :D LOVE!

    anyways, these cupcakes are really really good (and easy) trust me, so good they went in one night. after we had already scoffed 2 salads a roast turkey, roast lamb, roast potato, pumpkin and chocolate cake. soft and light but not too sweet with a real hit of coffee in the icing. i topped them with a shard of dark chocolate, which really clashed with the sweet icing.

    Chocolate cupcakes

    113g butter softened (I cut off 150 g and used the leftover 37g in the icing)
    1 c sugar
    2 large eggs
    3/4 c flour
    1/2 tspn baking powder
    1/4 tspn baking soda
    1/4 tspn salt
    1/2 c cocoa powder
    1/4 c milk (or water...but seriously?)
    1 tspn vanilla essence

    Preheat oven to 190 degrees. Prepare muffin/cupcake tray. Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, until well combined. Sift dry ingredients into butter/egg mix and combine. Add milk and vanilla essence. Mix.
    Scoop about 1 1/2 tbspn of batter into each cupcake case. (warning: do not eat batter because it tastes amazing and you wont end up with any cupcakes left) Bake for about 20 minutes or until skewer comes out clean.

    Coffee icing (momentous day...I MADE ICING THAT WORKED!!!!)
    Leftover softened butter from the 150g cut off for the cupcakes (about 37g)
    1 1/2 c icing sugar
    1 tspn instant coffee
    2 tbspns milk

    Dissolve instant coffee in milk in small glass (yes it does work with cold milk!) Place butter, icing sugar and coffee mix into bowl and mix until combined. it should hold shape. if too runny, add more icing sugar. if too much icing sugar, add milk (about a tbspn at a time)

    When cupcakes are cool, ice with coffee icing and shove a shard of dark chocolate in the top.

    Tuesday, February 2, 2010

    Passionfruit Sponge (a)

    Argh all this food talk is making me hungry. But I kinda dont want to eat because I am planning an epic dinner. I dont know what, but its going to be good. infact, i think steak is on the cards. yeahboiiii!!!
    anyways, what i am really meant to be talking about is passionfruit sponge. Like i said, I made two cakes for hannah's birthday, and this is the second cake. being delightfully creative, i decided that because i was making a rich-ish chocolate cake, the other cake should be light and fruity. i had leftover passionfruit syrup in the freezer, so figured that would be a good way to go.
    this passionfruit sponge was again, sooo easy to make and really light. it was probably a tiny bit dry though, so maybe a bit less time cooking, or get it all creamed up sooner so the cream can soak through.
    can i just say, that i love the word sponge. i think it fits this cake perfectly. when you press down on a sponge and it springs back, just like the word rolling off your goes down on the 'spon' and then slowly rises again 'geeeeeee'. perfect.

    Passionfruit Sponge

    4 eggs (seperated)
    3/4 c castor sugar
    3/4 c cornflour
    2 tspn self raising flour
    1 1/2 tspn baking powder

    Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Prepare two cake tins (same as for the devils food cake) Beat egg whites into stiff peaks. Add sugar gradually, continuing to beat. Add egg yolks individually, still beating. Sift dry ingredients. Fold dry ingredients into wet mix. Divide the mix between two cake tins. Place into oven and bake for 20 minutes. Do not open oven while cakes are cooking!! (the wait nearly killed me). Cakes are ready when you press lightly on the top and they spring back. Allow cakes to cool before icing

    1 cup cream
    1/4 c passionfruit pulp
    2 c icing sugar

    Beat cream until stiff. Use the cream to fill between the two cakes or do what I did and cream the middle + all the way around the cake.
    Mix the passionfruit and icing sugar and pour/spread overtop of cream/cake

    No tips for this cake, its pretty straightforward and I dont think you could stuff it up!! :)

    devils food cake (a)

    Its hannahs birthday. (well it was hannahs bday on the weekend)


    So, for hannahs birthday I decided to bake her a cake. well, two cakes. because there were 20 people coming and i didnt think one would be enough. the first cake i decided to bake was a devils food cake. why? because hannah requested a chocolate cake. i got the recipe from david lebovitz, this random guy who lives in paris and has written books about chocolate. i think thats pretty cool!
    now, ive always thought that devils food cake would be really hard to make and would involve lots of crazy ingredients. turns out, its actually pretty easy, and all the ingredients were in my pantry! YAY!
    this cake is moist, not too crumbly, and definitley not as heavy as the raspberry ganache cake. its not a mudcake, but its heavier than a chocolate sponge. pretty damn yum if you ask me.
    so pull out the cocoa and have a go at:

    Devils Food Cake

    9 tbspn cocoa powder (unsweetend if you can find it)
    1 1/2 c flour
    1/ tspn salt
    1 tspn baking soda
    1/4 tspn baking powder
    113g butter
    1 cup sugar
    2 large eggs
    1/2 c coffee
    1/2 c milk

    Preheat oven to 190 degrees. Prepare two cake tins (i used 2 different sized ones coz i didnt have the same sizes - used spring form and buttered the side, put baking paper circles on the bottom) Sift all the dry ingredients into a bowl. In another bowl, beat cream and sugar until creamy. (i used an electric mixer for the first time to do this. epic fail. will now stick to the wooden spoon. class.) Add the eggs into the butter and sugar mix one at a time, combining well. In a small bowl/glass combine the coffee and milk. Add 1/2 the dry ingredients to the wet mix. stir. add the milk and coffee. stir. add the rest of the dry ingredients. stir. Divide the cake batter into the two tins and bake for 25 minutes or until skewer comes out clean. Allow cake to cool completely before icing.

    Chocolate icing
    again, my icing was an epic fail. if you check out davids website you can see what the icing is SUPPOSED to look like. my icing was runny and i didnt have time to let it cool properly so i just poured it over the cake. still tasted GREAT.
    250g chocolate(dark choc ftw)
    1/2 c cream (or water, but seriously...water??)
    90g butter (use softened to make it easier)

    Melt chocolate in microwave. Let it cool for about 5 minutes. Add butter and stir well. Add cream, making sure you stir continuously so that the cold cream doesnt make the chocolate go hard. If you have time, let the icing sit until completely cool. If you dont, pour icing over the bottom cake and ice the sides. place other cake ontop, and pour icing over again. actually ends up looking pretty cool :)

    to write on a cake, combine icing sugar + water until a little runny but not too much (about 1/2 c icing sugar and 2 tbspns water). place icing into piping bag, or plastic sandwhich bag (cut a small corner off and pipe icing through that) and write on cake!!