Chocolate Brownies

Cookbook Challenge 2011: Fortnight 6
Theme: American
Recipe: Chocolate Brownies
Cookbook: The Kitchen Diaries

The next theme for the Cookbook Challenge is “American” and so I asked my brother, the American food expert in this house, for ideas. He gave me TONS of great ideas, which I then disregarded so I could make brownies. Sorry Bro!

But brownies? Who can say no to brownies?
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Chillipadi Mamak Kopitiam

How many Malaysian style restaurants can Flemington support? Judging by Laksa King, Chef Lagenda and newcomer on the block – Chillipadi Mamak Kopitiam – at least three seems to be a reasonable answer! Though Penny says that Chillipadi does Tamil Muslim style Malaysian food, so it is a little different from the other two restaurants at least.

Alastair and I have eaten at Chillipadi Mamak Kopitiam several times now, the first time being a couple of days after opening, when there were still some minor issues to be ironed out, and a lack of a liquor licence (which was finally granted last week).
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Mini lamb pies

Cookbook Challenge 2011: Fortnight 5
Theme: Outdoors
Recipe: Mini lamb pies
From: Arabesque

Oh no! I’m late for last fortnight’s Cookbook Challenge theme, which was “outdoors”. I cooked my dish, which we took to the Avalon Airshow, but ran out of time to write the post and edit photos. Still, here I am – better late than never.

Because I had planned to take my dish to the Airshow, I needed something that I could make ahead of time, that would be okay eaten cold. I decided to make mini lamb pies, from Arabesque, to add to a little picnic that I packed for the day.
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Nelson, NZ

Some pictures from our trip to Nelson over Australia Day (as mentioned briefly in the Cafe Vue post). Only a little bit of food content here folks, but there is a cute cat photo. That doesn’t grab your fancy? Well, there’s also numerous shots of beer. Is that better?

Alastair and I had a lovely, relaxing visit in Nelson – visiting Annette and Terry, Alastair’s mum and step dad. We didn’t do terribly much. We did a lot of this – having a quiet drink on Annette and Terry’s deck, watching the view.

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Macaron making session

Are macarons the new cupcake? They’ve been sweeping the foodie world over the past year and I must admit that the fad has mostly passed me by. But then I freely admit that I’m late to a lot of trends!

While I would class myself as a fairly confident baker, I’d never attempted baking macarons. Reading numerous reports from other bloggers on how difficult it is to bake them successfully scared me off! But recently I joined several other bloggers for a macaron making support session: Cherrie (and her gorgeous daughter, Deanna!), I-Hua, Liz, Kat, Penny and Thanh.

Are they as hard to make as everyone claims? Were we successful? Read on….


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The Premises 2

Alastair and I are quite different, but we have a really good relationship. Part of that is because despite our differences, we have the important things in common. We hold similar political views, are non-religious, and most importantly – neither of us are morning people!

Even though we’re not morning people, we’ve recently started getting up earlier in the weekend. And you know what? There are so many more hours in the day! The day never seems to end! It’s amazing!

Recently on one of our “get up early” Saturdays, we returned to The Premises for coffee and lunch. Because we had been up for several hours already, we had eaten toast for breakfast at home several hours before.
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