The week in brief

Walk

Happy 2012! So this post is about last week (since it’s now Monday and all). That’s because I spent the first day of 2012 doing just about nothing. We sat on the couch and watched a couple of movies, and only left the house in the evening to go to the movies. We reheated leftovers for sustenance, so I didn’t even need to do any cooking. It was BLISS.

Feasting

I took the time off work between Christmas and New Years (yes – so back to work tomorrow, sob!). I thought that we would have lots of days to relax and not get up to much, but it turned out to be reasonably busy. One day, we headed over to I-Hua’s house with the usual crew. Her and her boy cooked us a feast – this is part 1. Note the fried chicken in the bottom left. They know the way to our hearts.

Feasting

And part 2. Notable for the pork belly in the upper left.

Feasting

And finally – part 3!

Trifling

Kat made a massive trifle, most of which minikatspat polished off by herself. 😉

After lunch the boys watched cricket O_o I’m not quite sure how that happened…

Steer

On Wednesday night Alastair and I went to dinner at Steer with April, Thanh and Michele. We ate so much food… this was four of the six starters.

We had: fried zucchini flowers with buffalo ricotta, scallops with confit pork, crisp calamari with roast corn and jalapeno aioli and finally warm salmon gravlax. My favourite was the zucchini flowers in the top right – the batter was so, so crispy.

Steer

And the last two starters: on top was a warm duck egg with Ibericoa ham, and the bottom picture is the slow cooked octopus wit smokey rosemary and confit tomato.

Steer

For mains we had steak – hanger steak, oyster blade, and two rib eyes. Along with mashed potatoes, salad, onion rings and green vegetables.

When I write up a proper post on Steer I’ll go into more details about the steak. It was interesting to see how different cuts of beef from cows fed different diets end up with such different meat. And it definitely confirmed for me that I prefer a meatier flavour from my steak over a melt in the mouth texture.

Also – the onion rings were AWESOME.

Steer

And then desserts: Reece’s peanut butter cup, passionfruit tartlet, mace and vanilla panna cotta with strawberry and a baked NY cheesecake.

Steer

Apparently four desserts weren’t enough, because April, Thanh and Michele demanded that we also order the Bombe Alaska.

(Note: we paid for our meal, but probably received special treatment because Thanh is friends with many people at Steer after spending a week there doing boot camp.)

BBQ

On Friday night we took advantage of the beautiful weather and had a BBQ with Kat and Tim. Bro was the BBQ king and grilled everything to perfection.

BBQ

We definitely overcatered for the five of us. In fact, I’m still eating from the bowl of leftover BBQ meats today…

Coconut ice pops

We had to have some kind of dessert – I made toasted coconut ice pops from a book that Dany brought me for Christmas. They were so delicious – sweet and creamy, with the shredded coconut giving a chewy crunch. The other bonus is that they were simple to make. I need to make them again and take proper photos so I can blog them! 🙂

Pork belly

For NYE, we were invited to a picnic by the river and I decided to take along mini pork belly burgers in brioche. I got a bit excited at the market and came home with several kilos of pork belly…

I think my reasoning was: if I’m going to roast pork belly, I may as well roast a lot of it. It seemed logical at the time.

The pork came out amazingly well – this was one piece of three!

Pork belly in brioche

I had also baked mini brioche buns that morning. When it was almost time for us to leave the house I sandwiched pieces of pork belly (all with crackling) into the buns with lettuce and a smear of hoisin sauce.

I’m not modest – folks, these were GOOD.

Picnic

We ate and drank – it was a perfect night to spend outside.

Happy 2012

And finally, when it was time to say goodbye to 2011, we walked up the hill and watched the fireworks on the city skyline. Happy new year!