Monthly Archives

September 2011

Omega Brazil Nut Crackers

September 29, 2011

I don’t really recall where this recipe idea came from, but all of a sudden a few months ago I found myself on a cracker mission, determined to make healthy, crispy crackers. It took quite a few trials to get the texture and taste just right, which all seemed to come together when I thought of rolling out the dough super thin between two sheets of baking paper. And thus, came about these Omega Brazil Nut Crackers, using an abundance of fantastically nutritious ingredients.

I created this recipe as part of my work with Melrose, so I’m using a lot of their products here (look for them in health food shops and some Supermarkets). The Brazil Nuts in the spread and oil provide a valuable hit of Selenium, a mineral with antioxidant action. You’re getting a dose of Omega-3 ALA Fats and Fibre from the Flaxmeal, as well as more Omega-3 goodness from the OmegaCare Gold Spread.

So, yes, they’re really healthy. And they’re incredibly fun to make. Despite the lengthy process outlined below, they’re not difficult either. They key is to be confident. Plus, what is more impressive than homemade crackers? Well, I suppose the answer would be healthy homemade crackers

Omega Brazil Nut Crackers


Makes 2 sheets of crackers

Ingredients

1 Flax Egg (made using ½ tablespoon (~12g) Melrose Organic Golden Flaxmeal and 1 ½ tablespoons Water)
1/3 cup (60g) Wholemeal Plain Flour (and extra to flour your bench top)
1 heaped tablespoon (~15g) Almond Meal
2 heaped tablespoons (~48g) Melrose Organic Golden Flaxmeal
½ tablespoon (~6g) Chia Seeds
½ teaspoon Salt
¼ teaspoon Sweet Paprika
1 teaspoon Pure Maple Syrup
1 ½ tablespoons (~52g) Melrose Omega Care 3 Table Spread
1 tablespoon (~50g) Melrose Brazil Nut and Linseed Spread
2 ½ tablespoons Water
2 tablespoons Melrose Wild Crafted Brazil Nut Oil
1 tablespoon Sesame Seeds
Sea Salt, for seasoning

Equipment

Rolling Pin
Flat Baking Tray
Baking Paper
Spray Water Bottle
Wire Rack
Pastry Brush

Method

1. Preheat your oven to 180 Degrees Celsius, Convection setting.
2. To make your flax egg, place the ½ tablespoon flaxmeal and 1 ½ tablespoons water in a small cup. Stir to combine and let it sit for a few minutes (it will gel together).
3. Into a large bowl sift the wholemeal flour and almond meal. Add in the 2 tablespoons flaxmeal, chia seeds, salt, paprika, maple syrup, omega spread and brazil nut and linseed spread (a little of the brazil nut oil from the jar is fine too).
4. Next add 2 ½ tablespoons water to the bowl and mix well with your hands – get in there and squish it all together, it’s the best way to mix all the ingredients together!
5. Gather the dough and knead for ~30 seconds on a lightly floured surface, juts to help bring it all together. It should form a ball that is slightly sticky but not overly so. If your dough is too sticky add a little more flaxmeal and knead it through the mixture. Cut the dough in two and set half aside.
6. Line a flat large baking tray with baking paper. Place half the dough in the middle of the tray. Cover the dough with a second piece of equal-sized baking paper.
7. Using a rolling pin, work your way around flattening out the dough. You will need to pick pieces off and place them in a different position, in order to get one thin, even sheet. Do this until the dough is as thin as it will go while still being joined together. The goal is to make a flat, super thin sheet of cracker dough. Some of the edges will be uneven, that is fine – let’s just call that a ‘rustic’ appearance 😉
8. Once at the desired level of thinness, remove the top layer of baking paper. Using a spray container filled with water, spray to moisten the top very lightly, and give it a good sprinkle with sea salt.
9. Place the tray in the top third of the oven (yet not right up the top). Bake for 5 minutes, then rotate the tray and cook for a further 3-5 minutes or until lightly golden in the middle – mine cooked in 10 minutes. Watch it and be careful, as the crackers will burn quickly. The outer edges will be more cooked, you can discard those edges – just ensure the main section is cooked well. Undercooked crackers will not ‘snap’ appropriately, and will turn out a little soggy.
10. Once cooked, remove the tray from the oven. Pick up the baking paper to remove the crackers from the hot tray and let it rest on the wire rack for 5-10 minutes (or until cooled completely).
11. Now you can roll out your other dough in the same fashion and cook the remainder of your crackers, or alternatively freeze the dough for later use.
12. After the crackers have cooled, brush them with brazil nut oil (1 tablespoon per cracker sheet) and scatter with sesame seeds oil (½ tablespoon per cracker sheet).
13. Cut into your desired cracker shape using a sharp knife. Sometimes I like to just break them up by hand to get a variety of shapes and sizes.
14. Store in an airtight container and eat them with dips, cheese or with salad. * Note: be sure not to re-heat the crackers, as brazil nut oil cannot be heated.

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My favourite way to use these crackers is to scatter them, lightly crushed, over salad – just like delicious, healthy croutons. I make up a salad with grated carrot, baby spinach leaves, fresh basil, cucumber, cherry tomatoes, olives, tuna and goats cheese. I dress it generously with lemon juice and then scatter the crackers over the top. Delicious!

Heidi xo

Keeping Fresh in NYC with Acai Bowls and Green Juice

September 27, 2011

I’m sure you can gather from my San Francisco posts that I did a lot of eating on my recent USA trip. Often this food was more ‘indulgent’ than my usual diet choices – you know, a few more pastries, bagels and fried food thrown in. And I was fine with this. My body, however, would often scream out for something a little ‘cleaner’. Once you get the hang of listening to your body, it really does know best.

In New York City, when my body told me it wanted something fresh and full of nutrients I went to one place. It was a little street shack right near the 2nd Avenue Subway Station, on the corner of 1st Ave and Houston.

My girlfriends had been in New York for a few days before I arrived, and they were in love with the Acai bowls at this shop (Bhey, our friend who lives in New York, made sure to introduce the girls to this little gem of a place straight away). They also make a strong iced-coffee, a necessity to power you through a day of exploring the City!

In the humid New York City Summer, a bowl of frozen pureed Acai Berries was a brilliant heat remedy – almost a necessity, I would say. They should put that in travel brochures. Topped with sliced fresh banana (hello, where have you been all my life?), frozen berries and a scattering of granola, this was one refreshing, nutritious and invigorating breakfast.

I recommend eating your Acai bowl in First Park next to the subway station, sitting on a park bench with your girlfriends, planning your day and pinching yourself that you’re actually in New York City.

Another good way to keep fresh in New York City, when you’re body is craving vegetables, is with a Juicy Lucy’s Daily Green Juice (also found at the Acai Shack). This is a supremely efficient way to feel fresh. Every now and then I would down a bottle of Kale, Parsley, Celery, Cucumber and Ginger Juice and feel as fresh as a daisy.

You need to drink this baby fast. Just Get. It. Down. because it is gross. Seriously gross.

Note the concentration.

I was the only one who felt better after drinking the juice – my girlfriends did not partake in this activity. They thought it was foul. I’m certain others will find this Green Juice tip useful though. I honestly felt fantastic after drinking this Green Juice. Afterwards. Not during. After.

Here’s another tip, make sure you’re doing something fun while you’re drinking your Green Juice, just to make the experience a little more pleasant. I recommend catching the (free) Staten Island Ferry while you do so. It’s a great way to see the Statue of Liberty from afar.

It’s also a great way to see the City from a different angle.

Sharing a pretzel with your friends is a lovely thing to do while on the ferry. Just note: it may lead to Green Juice cravings. I’m just saying. But boy, the pretzels and pastries are worth it.

Heidi xo

My Birthday Lunch at Movida

September 24, 2011

Do you remember how I said that I was going to take the entire day off on yesterday to celebrate my birthday? And that I predicted it would all be rather marvelous? Well, it was indeed a marvelous day. I couldn’t have had a more lovely time, thanks to all the wonderful people in my life. I’m feeling very spoilt, special and grateful right about now.

Although yesterday was a decidedly chilly day, the soft Spring sun decided to grace us with it’s presence. This allowed mum and I to wander the City at a leisurely pace, hopping cafes and browsing the shops. I was searching for a dress to wear for the Brunch we are hosting the morning after our Wedding. And I found it, right where I thought I just might. It really is true what they say, when you put on your Wedding dress (or other special occasion dress), you really do know it’s the one.

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Just after noon, we casually walked into Movida, with hope in our eyes yet no expectation of securing a table. Rather we predicted we would be directed next door, to Movida Next Door, which works on a no reservations, first come first served policy. However on this day we were very lucky and were able to snag a table for three. When it’s right, it’s right, just like the dress, I suppose.

Mum, Ben and I had a beautiful lunch. It was my first visit to Movida, and it absolutely met my expectations for quality, gusto, confidence and honest deliciousness.

Loving the excuse for a cheeky wine at lunch. “Happy Birthday to me…”

Some beautiful bread with olive oil to start.

Two serves of the Empanada with Prawn and Chorizo Tapa (a special) – this pastry was insanely delicious, super flaky and well salted. Wow. Wow.

One serve of the Brioche with Sardines and Creme Fraiche Tapa (another special), the brioche was quite thin and melba toast-like. I found this to be lovely but not quite as ‘wow’ as the previous Tapa.

For our first Racione (main sharing plate) we ordered a special, the Barramundi with Clams, Broad Beans and Jamón. The fish was just spectacular, cooked perfectly, and the broth was intense, more like a slightly sweet reduction. Divine.

We also shared the Slowly Braised Beef Cheek in Pedro Ximenez on Cauliflower Puree, which was so incredibly, utterly rich and soft, it just fell apart. Truly beautiful.

And lastly the Catalan Seafood Stew. The saffron in this dish was a little too strong for my taste, but it was an incredibly beautiful dish – in terms of the quality of the seafood, the technique, the flavours and also, the nostalgia. Eating this dish yesterday took me back to sitting at a bar at the back of the bustling Mercat de La Boqueria in Barcelona, devouring a fresh seafood platter with generously poured glasses of vino. Oh, and just look at all those juices ready to be mopped up by a second round of bread.

We declined dessert (I’m not such a huge Churros fan after all), rather choosing to eat Macarons on the street. Pimm’s and Pomegranate flavour for Ben, Salted Caramel for mum and Bastille (Moet et Chandon and Blackcurrant) for me. These lovelies were from La Belle Miette on Hardware Lane, and were truly delicious.

Ben then headed back to work while mum and I delighted in more coffee and wedding chatter. It’s all about the decorating details at the moment. I’m leaning towards White Hydrangeas for our flowers. I never expected planning to be this much fun. I am so incredibly excited for February. Mum and I had such a lovely time together. We’re at a really fun stage in our relationship, in that we’re truly great friends yet she is also a mentor in many areas of my life. We talk about everything, and I love that. We don’t always agree, mind you (I can sometimes be a bit stubborn), but I so value my mum as a person and her opinions. I cherish our time together. Thanks for the beautiful day, mum.

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Later on in the evening I met up with a bunch of friends for dinner at Izakaya Den. This restaurant is seriously cool. We were seated on the large table at the back and we all shared little plates. The food was absolutely delicious. Standouts were the Fried Chicken and the Sweet Corn Fritters.

Mark bought me Sake…my first try. I must say it tasted like warm, sweet vinegar to me. I can see it growing on me though. Fantastically funky bottle too.

And look at this…

Sometimes he’s just too much to handle. Ben organised a bunch of Mini Cupcakes with candles that spelt out ‘Happy Birthday’. It was far too gorgeous. Ben bought them from Little Cupcakes on Degraves Street, and we had a whole range of flavours – from Red Velvet to Passionfruit to Lamington. They all went down a treat.

Afterwards we went out for some more drinks and chatting, plus a little dancing. I feel very loved and lucky to have such beautiful people in my life. Thanks to my mum, Ben, Jackson and my friends for making my day so very very special.

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Tomorrow we’re down in Red Hill for some more family birthday fun – it’s a busy time for us, with all our birthdays within 6 weeks of each other. There will be a lot more celebrating to come, folks…

Heidi xo

A Birthday Treat

September 23, 2011

Hi there, lovelies!

I’m feeling particularly chipper today…you see, it’s my birthday. And I’m a firm believer in doing whatever you want on your birthday. So that’s what I’m going to do.

Luckily I work for myself on Fridays, so I was able to take the day off for some birthday fun. 26 is an important birthday after all, it deserves a lot of attention and celebration – well that’s how it goes in my head anyway…

I’m being joined by my beautiful mum, who always believes in taking full advantage of the birthday situation and took the day off too! We’ve decided to treat ourselves to a day of lunching and, well, I’m not quite sure yet. We’ll see where the day takes us…Then later this evening I’m meeting friends for drinks and dinner. It’s all going to be rather marvelous.

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This year I firmly instructed Ben and my family to go easy on the presents (I have my Wedding coming up in 5 months, which doesn’t exactly come free). I did request a few cookbooks, however, and am super excited to dive into Good to the Grain and Plate to Pixel.

Another book I requested is Hungry, by Guy Mirabella. Not only because I adore Guy’s recipes (his cookbook, Eat Ate, is well used in my kitchen – do you recall this Rhubarb and Ricotta Tart? I do…), I also requested Hungry because Guy honoured me with a little mention in one of his pancake recipes. My family knows Guy and his Sister, Rosa, and I’m sure mum slipped in at some point about my blog. Anyway, it turns out he kind of likes it… *blush*

I can’t think of many more cooks or chefs that I would be more thrilled to receive praise from. Guy’s passion and talent, beautiful home-style Italian recipes, and his emphasis on cooking with family are all incredibly inspiring. And I love his new book, it’s divine. Just looking at the cover, clearly a rustic, casual family lunch, I melt with feelings of joy and warmth. As you devour the pages of Hungry you will be filled with a real sense of love – love for food, love for family, love for life. The full title is ‘Hungry, food from my heart’ – and it really is.

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Last night Ben and I made a simple recipe from Hungry, the Walnut Pesto. Pesto is one of my favourite things to make, the process is very cathartic, and takes me back to renting an apartment in Ortygia, Sicily, for six blissful days two years ago.

I really enjoyed this recipe, which is said to be common in Genoa. The walnut addition gave an earthy and refreshing flavour. We served this pesto with spaghettoni and spinach leaves (which wilted perfectly and gave an extra hit of veg, snap). Next up, I am itching to make the Stuffed Squid. With the Lime and Cranberry Cake for dessert. Yes, lovely.

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And so, as a Birthday treat, I am giving away one copy of Guy Mirabella’s Hungry to one lucky reader. What can I say, I’m a little excited about the mention and just want to share this beautiful book! I will announce and contact the winner in one week, on Friday 30th September (be sure to email me your contact details if you don’t have them easily displayed).

All you need to do is leave a comment below, telling me what is your favourite dish to cook for your loved ones. But you know what? It can even be a favourite dish you cook for yourself. As long as it’s made with love

Heidi xo

Denita and Tim’s New Hampshire Wedding

September 20, 2011

Riopel Photography
My friend, Denita, is one of the most beautiful people in the world. I feel so lucky to call her one of my best friends. De brightens my life, she tends to have that effect on many people, and she always always makes me laugh. We’ve helped each other through hard times and danced through the good. I couldn’t be happier that she’s found the love of her life. And last month she married him…

I can’t quite begin to explain how magical our five days in New Hampshire were. We were so spoilt by De and her now husband, Tim – the man is amazing, so friendly, fun and laid-back, it’s like he’s an Aussie. De’s family and a few of her friends made the journey to New Hampshire for the wedding, and we were really well taken care of, staying at Tim’s parent’s stunning Inn. It was like Switzerland, so lush and clean and green.

Tim and his incredible parents (wow, two of the most lovely people you’ll ever meet) showed us around his home town. We went to Waterville Valley, took a boat ride on Squam Lake where we ate Lobster Rolls, had burgers and shakes at a Diner and enjoyed their family’s musical talents at their open mic night. We had such a wonderful time, I just want to do it all again.

I know some of you are keen to see Wedding pictures, so I asked De if she would mind me sharing her day with you (not at all!) I thought I would bump this post up the list and show it before my New York City adventures. Don’t worry, there are a lot of New York posts to come, and I will most definitely be showing you our New Hampshire Diner experience – that was awesome. But first, the Wedding…

The Day Before

On Friday, the day before the Wedding, all us girls went to get our nails done at the Spa. It was just want we wanted – a little pampering and chatting with mimosas.

Emma, De and I.

That night Tim’s parents hosted an open mic night. What seemed like countless family members performed songs and jammed together, it was quite amazing the amount of talent in that room. I could have jumped up and played the recorder (hello grade 3 music class), but I resisted and left it to the professionals. Tim played two songs he wrote for De. It was beyond gorgeous.

Some of the musical action.

De with three of her five bridesmaids. Emma, Harriet and I. We school friends kept pinching ourselves that we were actually there, so far from home, a part of De’s Wedding. How special.

That was the night I also ate my first crab cake and deviled egg. I was very excited by this and promptly tracked down those who made these delights to thank them. I don’t think they thought I was too odd.

And the rest of the yummy eats… unfortunately I did not snap the hotdogs we ate (quality ones, my friends). My camera was away at that point, but trust me, they were delicious!

Wedding Day

The morning of the Wedding was perfect. We buzzed with excitement as we helped arrange flowers in mini vases under a stunning blue sky. The sun got a little too keen later on in the day, but that was ok – we sought refuge under the beautiful big Wedding Tent.

A little Eucalyptus for an Australian touch…

We then headed in to town for our hair appointments. That was fun – watching De get all done up, before having the treatment ourselves. De then went off to get her make-up done while we took turns with our hair. I was thrilled with my hairdresser, she gave my hair body and it lasted – what a miracle (my hair always falls straight and flat, it’s incredibly stubborn).

We then headed back to the Inn where we did our make-up and got dressed before heading into De’s room for a champagne toast with all the ladies of the family. It was really beautiful. Hot tip: wear waterproof mascara at your friends’ Weddings…

For some reason we decided to pose like a 50’s girl band. I think it was the dresses (which were from Review, by the way).

All us girls together – Emma (maid of honour), Harriet, De, myself, Mel and De’s sister, Taryn (maid of honour).

De looked absolutely stunning. I suppose when you’re that happy, excited and full of love, you’re going to look amazing. She really did have that Bridal glow.

De and her beautiful mum…

…and her lovely Dad.

And then it was time…

Riopel Photography

Tim and his amazing mum…

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Happy.

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Riopel Photography

Riopel Photography

Riopel Photography
De and Tim had Vermont Maple Syrup as their wedding favour, which was such a great idea – this stuff is liquid gold. I was tempted to take a whole case home.

This is as far as my food shots go – the pretty starter salad. What can I say, I was having too much fun to point and shoot. Forgive me. I’ll just have to tell you what we ate – we delighted in beautiful Steak and Grilled Salmon, a variety of lovely Vegetables, a Vegan Pasta and more Salad. It was all so fresh and fabulous. For dessert there was White Chocolate Mousse, served in champagne glasses (brilliant!) and garnished with a strawberry. At first I tried to drink it…then I saw the spoon. Awkward.

Riopel Photography
Emma’s toast made me cry. My goodness we’re going to miss De…we already are…

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Riopel Photography
Ski bunny cake toppers, how great are these?! De was an Aerial Skier and Tim was in the US Ski team, so naturally skiing is a big part of their lives.

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Their stunning Wedding Cake. It was a Carrot Cake, and the best I’ve ever eaten. I was seriously in love with that cake, we had a moment (or two)…

Riopel Photography

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I felt so special to be a part of De and Tim’s day. Spending the week with their family, seeing it all come together and everyone celebrating…it was like a fairytale. The room really was just filled with love and hope and happiness.

Thanks for the incredible experience and the beautiful memories, De and Tim. Here’s to many more special memories you will create together and the wonderful adventures ahead of you.

Riopel Photography

Heidi xo

Nopa Burger Brioche Love

September 17, 2011

Well, it seems I’ve come to the end of my San Francisco posts. I had a marvellous four days in the Californian foodie city – just me, my camera and my journal. And a whole lot of beautiful food.

I loved that I had to walk so far to get places, it really helped to build my appetite, which I enthusiastically fed with stunningly sweet fruit, beautiful bread and beignets, fresh salads, divine pastries, wacky and wonderful ice-cream and well, this brioche bun burger.

My final meal in San Francisco couldn’t have been more fantastic or representative of the exciting food I experienced during my visit. I snagged a seat at the communal dining table at Nopa, a popular restaurant that was recommended to me by a local, and which was undoubtedly filled with locals (tick).

Upon settling on my stool I went about selecting a glass of wine, something refreshing. It seemed prudent to go local, and so my very helpful and friendly Waiter suggested I try an organic Sauvignon Blanc from the Russian River Valley. It was cloudy, like an unfiltered apple juice, which was something completely new to me. And it was just lovely.

A complementary slice of peach, dressed in balsamic was heavenly. This city truly has some of the best produce I have ever tasted.

As soon as I saw the following item on the menu I knew that I would be ordering it. It was just absolutely going to happen.

Grass-Fed Hamburger, Pickled Onions, French Fries. Yep.

The burger was completely melt-in your mouth, a true quality, super juicy patty cooked perfectly medium-rare. I chose gruyère for my cheese – the options were blue, gruyère or cheddar. And the bun…brioche divinity. Luckily the burger was not huge, as it was a very rich meal. The pickled onions were delicious and the fries were lovely, not too crisp and not soggy. The basil aioli was also gorgeous. Yet I didn’t spend much time on the fries and aioli. Let’s be honest, it was all about the burger…

p.s. this meal, wine and tip included, cost 28USD. I know. Naturally I’m finding it difficult re-adjusting to Australia’s exorbitant food prices.

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But this post isn’t all about the burger. It’s also my farewell to the city. Here is a final snapshot of my hours spent wandering San Francisco.

It started with Hot Waffle and Latte from Blue Bottle Coffee at the Ferry Building Market Place.

Before heading to The Castro District.

Seeing the Golden Gate Bridge was a highlight…

As was lying in Dolores Park reading, eating plump Strawberries for lunch and snoozing in the sun…

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While I must admit that New York City stole my heart more than San Francisco, I felt like this city breathed a new light into me – I was given the gift of travelling independently for the first time, in the sunshine, with these happy tunes on repeat…and with a Tartine treat in my pocket. I felt alive.
And happy to be living my life.

Heidi xo

Humphry Slocombe

September 15, 2011

Humphry Slocombe. No, I’m not just saying random words that are wonderfully melodic and a little humorous (go on, say it out loud). Humphry Slocombe is an ice-cream store.

Possibly one of the worlds cutest ice-cream stores, with a black and white checkered linoleum floor, red vinyl swinging stools and pictures of Campbell’s Soup with ice-cream flavour names on the walls. It’s kind of like a funky vintage ice-cream diner. They even have ice-cream sundaes on the menu – how cute is that?

I first read about this store when trawling through David Lebovitz’s blog for San Francisco food recommendations. He mentioned it as a place to get a one-of-a-kind ice-cream experience (word, was he spot on). I just want to say, thank you, Mr Lebovitz.

I have spoken before of my love for gelati, and yes this fondness does extend to the creamier cousin, ice-cream. Perhaps my affection is not so poignant as Ben’s – I am very likely having an ice-cream Wedding Cake, my friends, after much insistence on Ben’s part. I even recall him saying, “It’s my day too” – true story. Even so, I do adore it in my own little way, with a loving, quiet affection.

And so this little ice-creamery, which is decidedly out of the touristy area, made my San Francisco ‘must visit’ list. Humphry Slocombe has a range of weird and wacky flavours, all incredibly enticing, I had a really difficult time choosing what to have. The Secret Breakfast (with cornflakes and bourbon) looked devilishly delicious. As did the FlufferNutter (although I’m still not sure what was in that one…)

In the end I went for Salt and Pepper, as I knew my Dad would love to try this flavour (he loves making his own ice-cream and is always one to try interesting creations). I also chose Brown Butter – do I really need to explain why I went for this one? I didn’t think so.

The Salt and Pepper ice-cream was…exciting! Tasting flavours that you originally would think should just not be in ice-cream form and experiencing such a foreign flavour combination – what a revelation that is. Ultra creamy ice-cream with pungent pepper flecks and a sprinkling of salt – each mouthful tasted more and more intense. As a result, I could only make it through about a third of my generous scoop. But, wow, I loved every crazy mouthful.

The Brown Butter ice-cream was just flat-out ridiculous. A super rich and creamy base, that still somehow managed to feel light, was lovingly folded with a divine, sultry, buttery, caramel train. Food-gasm, people. There’s no other way to describe it.

I really need to get friendly with my hand-me-down ice-cream maker…

Heidi xo

A Sunday Picnic

September 13, 2011

Sometimes it’s the simple, throw together meals that are the most special. A little sunshine and a picnic rug can be the ingredients that take a meal from a last minute afterthought to something surprisingly perfect.

The recipes below may be incredibly basic, but you know what? They are also incredibly wonderful. So I decided to share them with you. If for no other reason than to inspire you to dust off your picnic rug, assemble some simple, beautiful ingredients and enjoy a Springtime sunny meal outside.

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The following two recipes are best enjoyed alongside a Strawberry and Raspberry Fruit Salad, the Sunday Papers and, if you’re very lucky like me, a loved one. Please excuse the recent gushy posts. I guess I’m all loved-up due to Wedding Planning. Only 5 months to go. I promise I wont let it get too out of hand. He’s just rather great, that’s all…

Raspberry and Watermelon Juice

for two

Ingredients

3 big scoops Watermelon (which is probably just over 2 cups)
1 cup Frozen Raspberries

Method

1. Purchase watermelon and frozen raspberries
2. Put them in your blender
3. Blend until juicy
4. Pour
5. Drink
6. Smile in delight

Bagels with Cream Cheese and Smoked Salmon

for two

Ingredients

2 Fresh Bagels (I bought my plain from Huff Bagelry on Koornang Road. Finding a good bagel shop will make all the difference!)
100g Smoked Salmon
2-3 tablespoons Light Spreadable Philadelphia Cream Cheese (depending on how thick you like your spread)
* tomato, cucumbers, dill, capers and red onion would be lovely toppings also.

Method

1. Halve bagels and toast them under the grill to crisp them up a little (only 1-2 minutes on each side)
2. Spread the bagel halves with cream cheese
3. Top with smoked salmon
4. Eat outside on your picnic rug with your Raspberry and Watermelon Juice

Heidi xo

The Perfect Way to Start Your Weekend…

September 11, 2011

The perfect way to start your weekend is with food made with love. Yesterday, this meant homemade cookies that a special someone made for me the night before while I was out drinking wine at a girlfriend’s house. True story. Ben wanted to thank me for being extra helpful this week, and just generally being fabulous, I suppose 😉 And so while he was home Friday night doing some work he baked me a batch of giant cookies. I know, I’m a lucky girl.

The perfect way to start your weekend is with a giant homemade chocolate chip and walnut cookie, a small pot of yoghurt and cinnamon, a bowl of diced strawberry and grapefruit and a cup of peppermint tea.

Reading back issues of Gourmet Traveller is also a good idea.

Cookie recipe link. These are not nutritionally healthy, ‘everyday’ cookies, but you know what? Everything in moderation. That’s my dietitian note for you. I maintain that food made with love is indeed the perfect way to start your weekend. Yesterday that food just happened to be cookies. And it was indeed perfect.

Heidi xo

Beignets in the City

September 9, 2011

Here is another San Francisco snapshot for you. This time I’m taking you on the journey of my Sunday spent walking (and walking and walking) around the picturesque areas of the City. Aside from walking I also took a lot of pictures. And ate Beignets. But we’ll get to the Beignets later. First, the City…

I had quite the glorious time getting lost up keen hills and around pretty corners, lusting after potential houses and imagining my would-be San Francisco life. Naturally if I lived here I would be able to eat at Tartine all I wanted…

For my brother…

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There are only so many steps one can walk before needing nourishment.

Boulette’s Larder, a cafe in the Ferry Building Plaza, is famed for it’s Sunday brunch, with their Beignets garnering particular praise. And so on this Sunday in San Francisco I delighted in Cocoa Sugar dusted Beignets for lunch. Oh yes I did.

This was my first foray into the fantastic deep fried pastry dough balls that are Beignets. I knew they were associated with the Southern states of America and I knew they were fried. Other than that I was keen to learn more. And I was quite pleased with what I found in my paper bag.

These beauties were very delicious. Crisp outer coating, generously doused (doused seems a more accurate description than dusted, really) in cocoa-spiked sugar. Warm, melting batter goodness.

Granted I could only manage a few of them before my body screamed for something clean and nutritious. Enter Cherries and Greek Yoghurt.

Enjoyed while sitting on a bench outside the Ferry Building, soaking up a little Vitamin D and listening to Vampire Weekend on repeat. Happy. Happy with my Beignets in the City.

Heidi xo