Monday, October 15, 2012

Hello spring!

Hello spring! Hello sunshine! Hello outdoor movies, lazy sunday afternoon beers and hello hayfever. But mostly, hello SPRING RACES! It was simmys birthday, and of course, the ever fabulous ever stylish sim chose a champange breakfast and a day at the races to celebrate her 24th. I volunteered to make her 'cake' - a collection of spring themed cupcakes.

So I whipped out my susannah blake cupcake book, went to coles to buy some ingredients and made a complete mess in mums kitchen cooking 24 cupcakes, and then icing them. Here is my recipe...

Spring Cupcakes (makes 24)
130g butter at room temp (unsalted is best)
130g caster sugar
4 eggs
4 tbsp milk
2 tspn vanilla essence

Preheat oven to 180 degrees and line two cupcake tins with cupcake papers.
Beat the butter and sugar together in a bowl until light and fluffy (use electric mixer - gets the best results).
Beat eggs in one at a time.
sift the flour in, and then fold in by hand.
Stir in milk and flavouring to make a creamy, spoonable mix.
Spoon a tablespoon of mix into each cupcake tin - it doesn;t look like much.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean and when the top is pressed lightly it bounces back.
Cool on a wire rack.

Icing + decorations
125g butter at room temperature
1 1/2c icing sugar
2 tbspn milk
vanilla essence to taste
food colouring
1 box of smarties
1 packet of marshmallows
100s and 1000s

Mix butter, icing sugar, milk and essence in a bowl (I use a wooden spoon).
Seperate icing into two-three small bowls and colour as desired.
Cut marshmallows in half.
Spread icing ontop of a cupcake using a knife.
Place a smartie in the middle.
Pinch the ends of a marshmallow to make a petal shape then dip the cut half of a marshmallow into the 100s and 1000s.
Place marshmallows around the smartie to make a flower.

Take to a party and impress all your friends with your amazing cooking skills :)

Monday, September 10, 2012

The Local Cafe

The Local Cafe
36 Paget St
HiltonWA 6163

So. You know how I mentioned there were two cafes that were really close together in Hilton? Well I went to the other cafe...The Local Cafe...with dan for our regular monday brunch date. It was too cold to sit outside, and lucky there was one table left in the teeny tiny cafe, so I sat on down to wait for dan.

Halfway through the west aussie paper he turned up and we turned out attention to the menu. I of course, chose the pancakes and dan had the eggs bennedict. Now, I don't think I have mentioned this before, but I don't eat eggs. So I highly rate a cafe on how many 'egg-less' options they have. Muffins, granola and toast don't count because I can make that at home. The only option on this menu was the pancakes. 

Now, when the meals came out...mine came first, and it was your stock standard pancakes...three medium sized ones with about 3 strawberries chopped ontop and some (good quality) maple syrup. THEN the EB came out...and it looked freaking amazing, with pesto-mayo, a pile of eggs and crispy bacon absolutely lathered in sauce. Made my pancakes look pretty boring, and I was jealous. 

Anyways, I dug in regardless and...well...the flavour of the pnacakes was spot on, not too sweet, not too airy, nice and fresh and slightly crispy with yummy fresh strawberries...but they were just a teeny tiny bit too thick, and so the middle tasted slightly uncooked. On the other hand, dan had a freaking awesome breakfast that he couldn't stop raving about. 

We also had drinks..a chai for me...but they used powder, so it was very very sweet, but still really tasty (and better than the syrup they use at my work...eugh) and dans coffee...well it looked alright, but definitely not one of the best coffees around. Also it came in a plastic cup. wtf.

Like I said, the cafe was tiny, only 5 tables...and they were full of ladies catching up for coffee. There was a bali-style theme, with bright cushions and wooden wall hangings. The owner (and coffee maker) was sitting with some friends at one table, and would get up to make coffee and supervise the young (thai?) man on the till when required.  I was charged $45 for both breakfasts and coffees, and after a think, went back to demand some money back, because that was ridiculously overpriced! I was right...I was charged around $8 more for some reason - but there was no problem, after three goes at adding up the bill, it was sorted and I got some money back. The EB was $16 and my pancakes, $13, with both drinks being $4.5 - rather pricey for a local cafe.

So...what can I say...the serving sizes were excellent, the pancakes weren't bad, just not excellent, the coffee was mediocre and they overcharged me, but happily refunded (and accepted my pancake cristcism). It was nice to try, but I won't be going back to the local. I would rather head up the road a bit to sweet ginger...or next door to the wholesale patisserie, that had a very impressive array of cakes.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Sweet Ginger Cafe

Sweet Ginger Cafe
Shop 7
308 south st, hilton.

Once upon a time, I went on urbanspoon and found these two awesome looking cafes just out of freo. I didn't write the names down though, and therefore forgot about them. But the day came when I was determined to find these cafes...and so I spent ages searching high and low on google. To my surprise, I stumbled across them, and with alex as my date I went there, and now, I have the chance to share with you.

At first, I was unsure about SG. Mostly because I couldnt find it. I saw the sign, and I knew I was in the right area, but I couldnt see the cute little cafe that the photos on facebook indicated. All I saw was a run down old shopping centre, with a barber and local grocery store. "Maybe it's inside?" I said to alex. So we ventured through the grubby sliding doors and into the shopping centre. To my surpise (and delight), SG was there, like a cave of wonders. We walked in and just stood at the counter in awe of all the amazingly delightful house-baked goodies on show.

I settled on the banana and honey bread (fresh out of the oven) after a much heated discussion with the f.o.h staff (who was very informed, chatty and lovely) over whether it would be better than the berry and pear bread (also fresh out of the oven) and a soy chai brewed in the pot (YES!). Alex had the fruit bread with jam and a long mac. It came to $20. WOOOO! We chose our table and started to gossip.

excited alex!

My chai was brought out on a silver tray in a beautiful china teapot and cup and saucer (so fancy). Our food arrived shortly afterwards and my bread was delicious. The banana was well blended through the loaf, so no surprise soggy banana bits, there was a hint of honey and it was soft and beautiful and went so well with my chai. Alex thoroughly enjoyed her coffee and fruit bread, which was full of nuts and dried fruit. Probably could have done with a little bit more jam.

i'm a laaaaady!

We sat and chatted and considered getting more food, coz there was a pretty amazing looking chocolate cherry cake on offer. will have to wait until next time.

The decor at SG is mismatched old-worldy, with high back chairs, long tables for friends, a kids corner with books and couches for parents to sit and supervise on. There is wallpaper on the wall, floral on the sofa and china teapots on silver trays. The colour theme is a rich orange-red with lamps to create ambiance. There are small vases filled with fresh flowers on the table and sugar pots. All the food is displayed on the front counter, the muffins in their pans, the sweet bread on a stand and the cakes under glass domes. There is a wide range of tea, and the blackboard has daily specials (ie: coffee + muffin for $8.5) and the queen sits at the front counter presiding over everything.

the queen approves (photo from SG facebook)

This is a super cute really well priced cafe that takes a step back in time (literally - purely based on the location). The owners have done a superb job of fitting out an unused space in a shopping centre and have made something really special for the community...including live jazz on saturday. So, get your butt out of freo and down to hamilton.

Monday, August 27, 2012

X-wray cafe

X-wray Cafe
3-13 Essex Street  Fremantle
(08)9430 9399

Ooooo that sounds nice doesnt it?! Just rolls off the tongue. Kinda sounds like pig latin. I was never any good at speaking pig latin. But that is beside the point.

It was monday lunchtime and Flash and I were due for a date. I caught the bus to freo and sat outside in the sunshine waiting for him. We didn't have anywhere planned to go, and when Flash suggested x-wray I agreed. I've walked past there many a time and it always seemed like a hippie hangout...just the kinda place I would feel comfortable in. Fairy lights, chalkboard menu, giant pots with fishes in them and lots of greenery, plus a sheltered area with plenty of sunlight.

We walked straight up to the counter to order, and I immediatley knew that I had to have a burger. I don't usually go out for lunch (because I think it's silly) but when I do, burgers are my go-to choice. So I ordered a beef burger, Flash got the haloumi burger and we grabbed some water and set up table in the sunshine (nicely protected from the wind by those see-through plastic sheet thingys).

I feel like this image speaks for itself. HOW FREAKING GOOD does this look?!

Our burgers came out in about 15 minutes and I was impressed. Hello freshly toasted bread roll. Hello colourful lettuce (no iceberg to be seen), home-made relish, fresh tomato and onion and HEEELLLOOOOOO BEEF PATTY...delicious non-greasy and not watery flavoursome beef patty. It was delicious. Came with a side of the best chips I have had in perth (aside from clancys), well salted wedges with the skin on and yummy yummy aoli. I was happy. Flash had his haloumi burger. I love haloumi, but I love meat more...and while his was delicious, there just wasnt that satisfaction that comes with a BEEF burger.

mmmmmmm CHUPS!

So we ate, and we talked, and we sat outside in the sunshine and it was lovely. I would like to go back here, as there were lots of signs for live music and amazing cocktails. It would be a place where you could meet all your friends, grab some food to share and a few drinks and then carry on partying - or get out on their dancefloor. When people usually catch up for a drink in freo its at little creatures. I think x-wray would be slightly less pretentious, cheaper and definitely more intimate. The staff were great - efficient and well adjusted, and I my only complaint is that I haven't been back... apparently their breakfast is pretty amazing too. So, here is to out-of the way cafes in fremantle, I will be back for sure. In fact...probably next sunday for my luna movie date...feel free to join me?!!

Monday, August 13, 2012

The Precinct - breakfast

The Precinct.


That is all.

But no seriously, I have been to the precinct twice for breakfast. TWICE. I hardly ever go anywhere twice because there are sooo many good places in perth to go.

The first time was with dan and sim. Again, I had heard good things and decided we needed to try it out.

Walked in on a saturday morning and were greeted by the staff and told to take a seat anywhere. Menus and water were delivered to the table and I poured over it. A suitabley hot hipster waiter came over to take our coffee orders and while we waited I comtemplated my potential breakfast choices...waffles, or bacon/banana/peanut butter toastie. It had been a while since I had waffles, so I opted for that. Sim chose slow cooked eggs with polenta and tomatoes and dan chose the breakfast cassoulet.
Our drinks arrived in about 10 minutes and I got to pouring my chai. The red teapot it came in was really cute, but it was weird that sims latte and dans long mac were served in a a small (branded) cup - which was a little off putting as they are usually served in glasses, and sans branding (no, I am not a fan of advertising on my coffee, unless it is a takeaway cup).

waffles with maple syrup and lime something or other

I can't really remember how long the food took, but I do remember being hungry. So lets say it took a little longer than I was willing to wait. But that was ok because there was much to talk about. The food came out and looked absolutely beautiful - the plates were black, which was funny, and I didn't like the sound my fork made on them - but the overall presentation was great. My waffles were crisp on the outside, fluffy in the middle, not too sweet and beautifully complimented by the lemon curd, which was the lightest lemon curd I have ever tasted. Sim loved her polenta, with roasted tomatoes (still on the vine) and olive tapenade. Dans meal...well...we had to ask the waiter what it was. It was huge. It was tasty (very manly) but we're still not sure what it was...something with beans and eggs and duck and pork and sausage and kinda like a stew.

Peanut butter, bacon and bananana toastie

So that was breakfast number one. Breakfast number two was with matticus. I had to wait for him, which was great as I had the newspaper (slight disappointment that there were six weekend wests but no weekend australians (with superior crosswords) on offer). This time, I had the toastie...again, well presented, hot crisp toast filled with very well cooked bacon, taffy like peanut butter and fresh banana. It was weird yet wonderful eating this, as the peanut butter just stuck to the top of my mouth, the banana just smushed its flavour everywhere and the toast and bacon crunched. YUUUMMMMM.

Price wise, TP is not that bad. I was expecting quite high prices, but TP hasn't gone pretentious, and kept them in a vic-park price range. My waffle was $12, toasty $10. Sim payed $16 and dan $20. I think coffee was around $4.5. I wouldn't go twice if I didn't think it was reasonable!

So, the food here is good. The price is reasonable. The decor is warm and inviting - there is a super cool mural on one wall, and another wall lined with wine bottles. Blackboards hang from the ceiling advertising the liquor/wine of the day and the kitchen is open air...great for people watching. The staff are hip and cool yet still attentive. The only bad things are the fork/plate sound clash, the fact that the bench seats are waaaay too low for the table, there is no weekend australian AND because the floor is wooden, some of the staff sounded really loud when they walked by - which was off putting. BUT the food is delicious and well presented, and really, thats all that matters :)

stay tuned for TP - dinner.

Little Pantry

I read about Little Pantry on the 1000's website and decided I better try it out. Love a good cafe.
Dan was in town, I needed a good chat and a cheer up, so he picked me up on the bike and we headed down the freeway.
 LP is located on nicholson rd, in subi, and its probably one of the prettiest streets in perth, with lots of trees and cute little cottages. All of a sudden, in suburbia is this area of shops - a post office, homewares, real estate and a couple of health places and of course, LP. We parked down the road and walked up to the cafe. It was cold out, and the front of the cafe was shaded, so we sat inside.
I could tell straight away the LP is alll about the coffee (may have been the shirt the baristas were wearing) and not so much about the food.
So we walked to the counter and I looked at the cake available and I asked the tall dude
"what cake is that?"
"eet ez zee zucchiiiiini cake"
"ahhh (points at another that looks like chocolate) - i'll have a slice of that"
"yeeez okay one pieze ouf peppermint slize...will you have coffeeee"
"no thanks, just a soy chai in the pot please"
"ahhh i zink we cannot doo that"
So I talked to the barrista and came up with a solution. Also, if you coudn't tell - the tall dude was french, and obviously didn't have much time for the customers. Its not that he was rude, or obnoxious, but I got the feeling it had been a looong day and all he wanted to do was go home and eat a croissant.
Anyways, our drinks came, and our slice/food came, and it was yuuummmooo. The slice was crisp on the bottom with chunks of delicious pappermint in it and a yummy chocolate icing. It wasn't really that satisfying so I went back for more (brownie - which could have been a bit gooeyer and had stuff in it). I also like my cake served with cream. But that's because i'm a fatty.
My chai came in a glass and tasted good too - but its not as fun when you don't get to pour the tea.

As for the decor - it was a very small cafe, nice blue paint, wooden furnishings and a fun bookshelf full of exciting things to look at. Plus a great range of newspapers. There were only 4 seats with a back (unless you want to sit outside) so it was lucky we got a spot where I could lean against the wall - because I'm not very good at sitting on a stool. The customers were coffee hipsters, dog walkers and a few couples. You probably wouldnt be able to sit a group bigger than 4 or 5 comfortably - its the type of place designed for takeaway.

The price was expensive - my tiny slice was $5 and dan payed for the rest of it, but coffee probably around the $4.5 mark. I guess that's what you get when you dine in subi.

I'm glad I tried it, and if I or a friend was in the area, I would recommend going there for coffee, and a piece of peppermint slice - definitely not a meal - but I wouldn't go out of my way to get there :)

Friday, August 3, 2012

Superstar Waffles

Ever since I was a little girl, on sunday, after church, mum would make a 'special' breakfast. Most of the time it was pancakes (coz pancakes are easy), and sometimes it would be french toast. But, if we were really REALLY lucky, we would get WAFFLES! Soon, I was allowed in the kitchen by myself, and I started to make waffles every sunday morning (they were actually easy mum).

I live out of home now, and have my own waffle machine. On the 25th of march, I always organise a waffle breakfast, because the 25th of march is international waffle day.

Since moving to australia I have come to the sad realisation that most people have grown up believeing gelare waffles are a 'real' waffle. GELARE WAFFLES ARE CRAP. CRAP I TELL YOU! I have spent many mornings making waffles for friends to prove this point.

The perfect waffle

The perfect waffle is hot. It is served with mayple syrup. It is crispy on the outside. It is fluffy in the middle, and when you break it open you should be able to see the steam. It has a slightly savoury, bland taste (like white bread) - you add maple syrup to make it sweet. Or, if you are in norway you eat it with fresh strawberry jam. mmmmmm.

Anyways this is all beside the point. When I heard there was a new waffle joint open in perth I knew I had to try it out - will their waffles exceed gelare and live up to my waffle expectations?

We walked in around 9pm on a saturday night (yes, I spend my saturday evenings eating waffles. so what?) to an empty cafe. SW is located down the alley next to ezra pound. Empty cafe is ok, coz it meant we would get served first - and quickly.

I sat down and looked at the menu (which I had already looked at online) and knew that I had to have the smores waffle with marshmallow fluff, nutella, and marshmallows on the side. My roomie, KC had the banoffie pie (caramel, banana and biscuit on waffle) with icecream. Janeo took a plain waffle with chocolate icecream.

In about 15 minutes our waffles arrived. I spent all of about 20 seconds taking a photo and then dived in.

CRISP WAFFLE. STEAM. FLUFFY INSIDE. INSANELY SWEET MARSHMELLOW FLUFF. and nutella. and a shot glass filled with baby marshmallows to add. It was insane. The marshmallow was sticky and sweet, the waffle was delicious and I was in heaven. The only problem was that I needed more nutella (the lovely waitress brought some over), the cream came out of a can (gross) and that I ended up with a sugar headache.

Janes waffle was actually amazing, even though I scoffed at the 'plain waffle with icecream' the chocolate icecream was quality, and the waffle was the perfect sponginess to mop up all the melted icecream. KC had a whole banana and yummy caramel - and even managed to fit in a scoop of icecream as well!

After our pig-out, we all sat around for a while, drinking water and digesting, before attacking the chalkboard - hilarity ensued.

All in all, superstar waffles is definitley a great example of a REAL waffle - made the american way with all the toppings. They have friendly staff, an open space that could fit up to 30 people, decent music, open late night and the coolest tip jar I have ever seen.

Late night dessert lovers, rejoice!

Monday, July 30, 2012


416 William St, Northbridge

The word Lido makes me think of italian food. Of pasta and tomato sauce, meatballs and parmesan cheese.
In this case, Lido is asian food. Delicious, delicious asian food.

It was saturday night. I was due to go out for dinner (read: wine) with Janeo, and while browsing urbanspoon for a nice looking restaurant, my roomie KC decided to join us. The plan was dinner, and then waffles (see next post).

KC and I were too lazy to catch the train into the city, so I volunteered to drive - note to self: DON'T DRIVE INTO NORTHBRIDGE ON A SATURDAY NIGHT! We ended up finding (free) parking just a couple of blocks away from Lido, which was awesome (and no, I'm not telling you where it is).

Lido lanterns
We got there around 7:30, lucky Janeo was early and had already got us on the waiting list. Yes, there is a waiting list, so either book, or be prepared to stand in line. We were seated around 20 min later and got straight into the ordering.

Chicken chow mein ($16), stir fry beef in coconut cream curry and a bowl of stir fry veges arrived at our table within 15 min, which was great coz we were HUNGRY. Now, I love my asian food - but the most disappointing thing is always 1) lack of veges in the curry and 2) overload of onion (I think they classify it as a vegetable). Not at Lido. There were so many veges in everything it was practically blinding to look in the bowls. The carrot was cut like a flower, the snow-peas were cooked so lightly that they were still crunchy, with big fat juicy peas inside. The celery was crisp, the cauliflower and broccoli was abundant and I couldn't find any onion! The chicken chow mein was full of juicy chicken pieces (real chicken, not out of a bag) and thick egg noodles. The beef curry, oh my lordy, the beef curry. Not chiilli spicy, full of wonderful spices and a rich creamy sauce that just blended with tender beef pieces and my rice so well. As I mentioned before, both of these dishes had so many veges in them that we really didn't need the extra dish, but I wasn't going to discriminate, and the veges were delish. All the meals were hot, tasty and colourful.

We left quite soon after, as we could see there were lots of people waiting for tables - the total for the evening coming to $60 (that was with a bottle of wine!) Absolute win. We were stuffed to the bazookas full of fresh, healthy food, and ready for a walk down to superstar waffles...

p.s the staff were amazing too - didn't talk much but super efficient! When can I go back?
p.p.s they have a menu online so check it out!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Little Willys

Little Willys..
267 William Street, Northbridge

Miss K and I were well overdue for a coffee date. I was working at sherbs, and she was in the city, so when she suggested LW in northbridge I was like...well heck, why not.

Bypassing the hipsters sitting outside with their long macs, Miss K and I ventured inside - her in gym gear and me in my cake-covered work clothes, well...we didn't fit in. But the super lovely french lady at the till made us feel welcome, and completely understood what I meant when I asked for a:


which is apparently, the way it is SUPPOSED to be done, and the way that LW does it. (p.s just a tiny shout out to Hannah, who introduced me to the CTWSMBIP). So we sat on the homemade tables and drank our chai and juice, talked about our amazing lives, sheltered from the cold and watched northbridge unwind on a friday afternoon - we then went to the perth supper club which was AMAZEBALLS.

About a week later, I was meant to go to the tuckshop cafe with dan - it was closed - so we headed on down to LW. The breakfast menu is short, but consists of non-egg food (yay!) and a great selection of muffins, croissants and friands and apparently the best breakfast burrito outside mexico - I have to admit, it was pretty good.

While sitting in the corner (this time appropriately hipster-ed out in my skirt stocking jacket combo) sipping my CTWSMBIP and eating blueberry coconut bread I realised that life couldnt get any better. BLUEBERRY COCONUT BREAD. It had so many blueberries, and the nutty coconut flavour just ran with it. Lightly toasted and crunchy with a good smathering of butter...mmmmmmm.

The staff are super-friendly-chatty, the decor is unusual, the chairs could use a few cushions to be comfier (the bench isnt quite wide enough for a full blown sprawl though), there is a steady pile of magazines/newspapers, the flowers are fresh, the food is tasty and my chai (and dans coffee) were amazing. Oh, and its also possibly the cheapest coffee in perth? $3.80 for a CTWSMBIP and $3 for the blueberry coconut bread is absolutely ridiculous awesome.

So little willys, you have won my soy-chai-blueberry heart. <3

I will(y) be back, and there will be friends coming with me :)

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Oh hello there!

Miss K and I caught up last night - and Miss K mentioned our blog. Our wonderful beautiful baby that has sadly been neglected for a couple (ok alot) of months. We haven't stopped eating, or baking, we just got BUSY (K got a boyfriend and I got another job). So, here we go...a promise to write something EVERY WEEK. I am currently working full time at sherbet (queen of icing here), so I don't have much time for baking, but I AM eating all the food in perth that I can - breakfasts especially. My camera is loaded, my tummy is empty and the words are on xx

p.s heres a few shots just to get you going...

breakfast at sayers

salad at aubergine

3 hours at king st reading the takiest (read:best) book ever

breakfast at hobart st

afternoon tea at lincolns