Easter bunny is almost here…

Three days before the Easter Bunny arrives and I am still busily planning my menu for Easter Sunday lunch. If you could just see my dining table…I have open Donna Hay magazines strewn everywhere, a Nigella cook book on the floor, Gary Mehigan’s book flipped open to his crazy delicious brownie recipe and a carton of colourful rubber eggs that I picked up from Bed Bath and Table; perfect for MM’s first Easter egg hunt on Sunday as I’m trying to be a good Mummy and go steady with his chocolate intake! I’ve definitely decided on a starter to get the palate salivating but deciding on what’s to come…wish me luck!

For a while now, I have been enjoying making goodies to give at Easter, just like at Christmas too when I made a big batch of my Gourmet Chocolate and Apricot muesli and bottled portions of it up in glass bottles to giveaway. The smiles from people who are on the receiving end are so much bigger especially when they realise it’s homemade! And so I add this to my Thursday madness as while I am not attempting to make chocolate eggs, I may be planning to make something gooey which involves chocolate of course and maybe a bit of peanut butter…I will keep you posted ūüôā

And yesterday out of all of the chocolate shops in Sydney, I paid a visit to the one I love best – Scrumptious on Cross Street in Double Bay. Quite close to another love; Papier D’Amour and two doors down from an endless love; Simmone Logue, Scrumptious is just as its name describes…utterly scrumptious. It is a small shop filled to the brim (especially around this time of year) with so many goodies; both edible and ornamental that it’s an overload on the senses. The scent of chocolate is amazing and the collection that the owners, Nicole and Briar, have amassed of glassware, bunnies, biscuits, eggs, vases, birdcages and baskets is truly extraordinary. On this particular visit, I picked up bits and pieces to decorate my Easter Sunday table and of course some chocolate to top it off.

I must now stop procrastinating and make some important decisions as to what to cook so I wish you all a beautiful Easter and hope you spend lots of time with family and friends relaxing over this long weekend, eating lots of chocolate and also taking some time out for yourself!

Happy Easter!

Scrumptious @ 4 Cross Street Double Bay NSW 2028

Simmone Logue @ 2 Cross Street Double Bay NSW 2028

Papier D’Amour @ 8 Cross Street Double Bay NSW 2028

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Published in: on April 4, 2012 at 11:50 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Sipping a thick shake in sunny Sydney

Summer has finally arrived and boy is it showing off in Sydney!! Temperatures are finally above 30degrees and I am loving it. I also love Baskin Robbins Chocolate Peanut butter ice cream and having a thick shake of the flavour is actually a bit too much. Oh well at least that’s my chocolate fix for the week! Happy Friday!!

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Published in: on February 24, 2012 at 4:09 am  Leave a Comment  
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the eat week that was

Adjusting to my LOL (lady of leisure) lifestyle with BIT (baby in tow) addition whilst omitting the breastfeeding, nappy changes, nap time and tummy time; one still needs to eat! And looking back at the week that was there have been quite a few lunchtime highlights and with the weekend just one sleep away, I urge you to go, stop by and feast.

Monday; first stop ~ Piato on Blues Point Road, McMahons Point¬†situated amongst the row of shops with the black and white striped awning. Feasting with Lizzy and BIT and roasting in the gorgeous midday sunshine, we were both famished and admittedly coming off the back of dining at a new but oh-so-nasty-n0-go cafe the weekend before (another post altogether about when you know you will never¬†go¬†back somewhere when you leave feeling like you have been ripped off and taken for granted as a customer) and so in other words, we were eager to eat. By 1pm, most of the sidewalk tables laden with sunshine had been taken bar one which we quickly swooped on and with no time to waste with Lizzy in “lunch hour”, orders were placed.

After a short exchange of gossip and a peep and¬†ooh¬†at a sleeping baby, our lunch was ready and laid before us. I had ordered the Saffron Pappardelle and Lizzy had ordered the Homemade Cannelloni. Immediately I was impressed with the generous serving of saffron-tinged pappardelle ribbons accompanied by bite sized chunks of chicken, olives, chorizo and capsicum. The plate was alive with colour and texture and after a sprinkling of freshly cracked pepper, I began to devour it. Meanwhile, Lizzy’s cannelloni had every essence of “homemade” injected in her lunch. Cheese was oozing and bubbling on top and the cannelloni tubes were trying to burst out from underneath the blanket of mozzarella – visibly filled to the brim with a steaming bolognese sauce. Conversation halted and silence emerged between the two of us as lunch was undoubtedly enjoyed and we made a pact to go back!

Wednesday; second stop ~ Bonds Corner Fine Food Cafe on Sailors Bay Road, Northbridge situated just past the golf course. The sunshine was out again under cloudless blue skies, but the wind was more fresh on the skin. With most diners already been and gone by 1.45pm and with their soup and¬†lasagna¬†sold out, I ordered crispy skin salmon on a bed of pea and lemon risotto. Taking a moment to sip my hot cappuccino and loving the shaved chocolate flakes resting on top of the foam, the cafe’s position is bathed in sunlight and warmed my back, making winter not that bad! The salmon arrived shortly after and the plate again was alive before me with the skin golden and crisp to bite into and the risotto was creamy with lemon zest bursts and a smattering of peas. For a cafe slightly off the beaten track and away from the hustle and bustle of the plaza, I loved the personal touch and evident passion for food from this cafe and am bound to be back soon.

Tomorrow I leave for the snow with Mr ELG and BIT and in frosty 2 degree weather, I look forward to apres-ski moments of mugs of hot chocolate, toasted marshmallows, buttered popcorn and having bowls of my freshly made batch of chocolate and hazelnut toasted muesli (see prior post for recipe). I look back on this eat-week-that-was with fond memories and am already thinking about when I can get back to these two hot spots to enjoy, eat and devour more!

Piato @ 123 Blues Point Road, McMahons Point NSW 2060

Bonds Corner Fine Food Cafe @ 2/395 Sailors Bay Road, Northbridge NSW 2067

Published in: on June 24, 2011 at 2:01 am  Leave a Comment  
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Inspired by Farmer Jo gourmet muesli; decadence emerges on a Sunday morning

On a solo trip to Eveleigh markets one Saturday morning, I walked past the blooming flowers and mountain of meringues, past the grain-fed lamb and skipped over the lemon and garlic oils to find myself in front of a stand of what I initially thought was humble muesli. Farmer Jo was the brand and tubs were stacked up in piles showcasing a couple of different varieties. As a taster, there was a creamy looking apple bircher in tiny cups. As I ate a portion of the soaked muesli I immediately tasted the complexities; the crisp apple flavour with a sour lemony edge. Delicious I thought. However it was the orange and chocolate hazelnut pot of wonder that I walked away with, fascinated by the inevitable decadence that this muesli could bring to my humble mornings. It didn’t let me down and as I tentatively shared some with Mr ELG, I savoured the textures, tastes and¬†fragrance¬†of my morning purchase. I didn’t want the wonder pot to end, with my portions of muesli getting smaller and smaller as the days went on. Unfortunately I couldn’t get back to Eveleigh the next Saturday so the pot sat in my pantry empty. Thankfully the muesli memory lived on.

So this morning with some time up my sleeve as baby rested in his rocker I set out to re-create decadence in a bowl. Using a recipe from this month’s Delicious magazine as a starting point; I was inspired:

ELG’s Sunday decadence in a bowl

2 cups of rolled oats

1 cup shredded coconut

1/3 cup pumpkin seeds

1/3 cup hazelnuts –¬†roughly chopped

1/3 cup almonds –¬†roughly chopped

1/2 cup golden syrup

1 teaspoon cinnamon

200g dark chocolate –¬†roughly chopped

1/3 cup dried apricots –¬†roughly chopped

Pre-heat oven 180 degrees. Combine oats, pumpkin seeds, coconut, nuts and golden syrup together. Spread over a lined baking tray and roast for 15-20 minutes, turning every five minutes for even colour. Once cool, add chocolate and apricots. Serve with chilled milk.

As I got to the end of my bowl slurping the last remnants, the old Coco Pops jingle entered my mind “Just like a chocolate milkshake only crunchy!” The muesli was heaven in a bowl and what’s even better is there’s heaps left over for tomorrow….oh how I love to eat!

Published in: on June 5, 2011 at 7:09 am  Leave a Comment  
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