Archive for July, 2012

You will need

2kg pork roast

Fennel seeds

4 large granny smith apples – peeled, cored, large chunks

Salt flakes

2 large zucchini

5 yellow squash

5 shallot onions


olive oil

2 cloves of crushed garlic

Heat the oven to 250 or as high as it will go

In a casserole dish – place the apples, sprinkle 1 tsp fennel seeds

Place the pork on top

Score the skin with a sharp knife

rub 1 tbsp of sealt flakes and 1 tsp of fennel seeds into the skin

Put in the oven

Bake for 25 minutes

Then reduce to oven to 170 degrees

cook for 40 minutes per kilo at this point

An hour before serving time

Chop all the veggies – place in a plastic bag

Sprinkle librally with paprika, salt, pepper, the crushed garlic, and a good lug of olive oil

Shake the bag to distribute evenly for 2 good minutes

Pour into a casserole dish

Bake for 45-55 minutes till tender

Serve with the pork

When the pork is ready

Allow it to rest for 10 minutes

Pull off the crackling layer and cut into manageable pieces

Remove any excess fat before carving

Give the apple mixture a good mash with a fork and serve as an alternative to gravy

The apples will have caramelised in the pork juices

Serve with steamed green beans – toss through with some olive oil, fetta, and sprinkle with Zataar

And potato and herb salad



Read Full Post »

Best made in advanved and then warmed to serve

You will need:

750ml red wine (a good way to use the cheap red wine that comes in hampers)

1 cup water

1 cup sugar

2 oranges thinly sliced

1 lemon thinly sliced

2 cinnamon sticks

6 whole cloves

optional – 6 black pepper corns

a pinch of nutmeg

Bring all ingredients to the boil and then immediately bring down to the lowest possible temperature

Cook for 30 minutes

Set aside or serve warm

Read Full Post »

You Will Need


800g tin of plums

2/3 cup unsalted butter

3/4 cup treacle

1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar

2 1/2 cups of plain flour

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

2 eggs

1/2 cup milk

1 1/2 tablespoons of ground ginger

2 teaspoons mixed spice

1/2 packet of crystalised ginger


1 vanilla bean

500ml milk

6 egg yolks

1/2 cup caster sugar

optional – splash of brandy

3 level teaspoons of corn flour


Prehat fan forced oven to 170

Line the bottom of your tin with baking paper

Then lay out the halved plums – no pips

Sprinkle over the crystalised ginger

Cream 1/2 the butter, eggs sugar with an electric mixter

In a heat proof bowl over a saucepan of boiling water warm the other 1/2 butter and treacle

Into the creamed butter add the flour and baking powder

Then add the warm treacle butter mixture

If the mixture is too stiff, pour in the milk

Pour the batter over the plums and ginger

Bake for 45-55 mins until cooked through

Serve warm with custard


In a heat proof bowl over a saucepan of boiling water bring the milk, sugar and vanilla bean to the boil

Reduce the heat

Add egg yolks

Whisk until incorporated

Add the cornflour

Whisk until incorporated

Add the whisky

Whisk over a medium heat until the desired thickness has been achieved

Read Full Post »

The Astor is the only place to see the Grindhouse double feature as Rodriguez and Tarantino intended.

The two movies are screened back to back, complete with false trailers.

Both films were released on DVD, but these are different edits (unusually for dvd, these edits are much longer than the cinema release and are a very different watching experience)

The films are played with the scratched negatives and missing reels which is a rather delightful experience for the jaded HD movie goer

Fake Trailer – Machete

Danny Trejo plays Machete, in the ultimate massacre movie.

Cheech Marin is the gun toting priest

It just looks plain awesome

Rumour has it that they’re turning the concept into a video game.

Planet Terror – d. Robert Rodriguez

The music is great, Rose Magowan at her best, and Freddy Rodriguez is just so freaking awesome.

He is the only person who can lookawesome and sexy whilst riding a tiny motobike with his knees up next to his ears

It’s just so much fun, it’s gross, it’s politically incorrect, it’s cliche and it rocked my socks

Normally I wouldn’t be able to handle the amount of (for want of a better term) ‘gross-ness’, but somehow I just enjoyed it so much

It’s not just another Zombie film, but I don’t think it would be fair to compare it with a film like Shaun of the Dead, because this is another kettle of fish completely.

Read Full Post »

Joy Cupcakes

Joy Cupcakes

Southgate Shopping Complex Ground Level

$4 each



Orange and Polenta Popcorn – (Vegan & Gluten Free) Orange and Polenta Cake with popcorn and orange frosting.

The cake tasted of lemon and was quite pleasant.  The popcorn and frosting, once you shoved the whole thing in your mouth – which was a challenge in itself – was ok.  The lemon (or orange as it was supposed to be) needed to be much stronger.  All the flavors seemed muted.

Toffee apple – Spiced buttermilk cake, red apple and toffee butterscotch cream

So disappointing – the apple slice on the top was sickly sweet.  The butterscotch cream was absolutely flavorless. The spiced buttermilk cake was bland and heavy and should have had chunks of spiced apple through it.

Sticky Date – Sticky date cake, butterscotch Syrup, Vanilla Mandarin Cream

This was the best of the three.  The cake was soft, and light, and tasted of dates. The vanilla mandarin cream was light, and zesty without being overpowering. 

Joy Cupcakes on Urbanspoon

Read Full Post »

Kamel for Brunch


19 Victoria Avenue, Albert Park





Hump Breakfast – 2 poached eggs, toast, sauteed spinach, garlic mushrooms, crispy bacon, roasted tomatoes + lebanese snags + fetta


Chocolate Sharing Plate – Chocolate Baklava, Chocolate parfait, Chocolate and rosewater mousse with pistachio creme

I love Kamel, the staff are helpful, the menu is always imaginative and tasty.

They serve Breakfast Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays

Otherwise it’s lunch and dinner – which are also fabulous.

I love the HUMP breakfast because it pretty much has everything except the house made beans (I was sad the full madames was not on the menu – a very tasty breakfast bean dish)

I love the spicy little Lebanese lamb snags they have, which marry perfectly with the salty creaminess of the feta.

The eggs were perfectly poached and not vinegary.

If anything, I would like the tomatoes without the dried herbs – but it’s far from a complaint.

We arrived at 11am and they happily allowed us to chat, finish brunch, drink tea, order dessert, and chat some more until we left at 2:30pm.

They didn’t rush us out the door, or throw the bill down on the table.

I think it helps now they have the outdoor area at the back – so many great spaces to accommodate any number of diners.

As for the dessert – very hit and miss

The chocolate and rosewater mousse didn’t quite have enough rosewater, so it just tasted like off chocolate cream.

The chocolate parfait was nice but not pushing any boundaries – would be nice with some salted caramel sprinkled on tom or some roasted coconut and almonds for texture.

However – the chocolate baklava was heaven – hot, sweet, sticky, crunchy pastry, warm gooey luxurious chocolate.

I love Kamel, I will keep coming back.  Time for one of the banquet dinners again – great value too for 4 people $35 per person – like a low key Maha but just as good.

Be thoughtful and courteous to the staff – if you make a booking – do the right thing

That means turn up, or call ahead to cancel when they’re  kind enough to be holding a table for you.

Also good to know that you can reserve a table for brunch


Kamel on Urbanspoon

Read Full Post »

Century Brownies

Today was my 100th physio session

So the right thing to do, is to bring in morning tea for the physio crew

You will need:


3 blocks of cooking chocolate

(I use Lindt 70%)

250g salted butter

1 1/2 cups caster sugar

2 tsp vanilla extract

4 large eggs

1/2 cup plain flour

1/2 cup SR flour

1 bag milk chocolate chips

1 bag dark chocolate chips


250g superfine chocolate

1/3 cup cream


Preheat oven 150degrees

Melt chocolate and butter in a metal or glass bowl over a simmering pot of water until smooth and glossy.

Remove from heat and stir in sugar.

It is very important you let this cool for 1hr.

Stir in eggs and vanilla.

Fold in flour with a wooden spoon.

Then add the chocolate chips.

scoop into brownie pan – approx 20cm x 30cm – lined with baking paper.

Bake for 1hr.

Cool for at least 1hr so that the chocolate can solidify.

Meanwhile, make the ganache

Combine chocolate and cream in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Stir with a metal spoon until smooth. Remove bowl from heat.

Set aside at room temperature to cool, stirring occasionally, until ganache is thick and spreadable.

When the brownies have cooled, Cut into 3cm cubes.

Makes approx 24.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »