Hungry and Frozen the Cookbook

Hungry and Frozen Cookbook

It’s finally here! The Hungry and Frozen cookbook that Laura spent much of last year creating, writing, loving; that Kate and Jason and Tim and I spent a couple of months photographing and styling and project managing. It’s really here.

I couldn’t be more proud of Laura for making her dream of being a cookbook author come true! And I’m so grateful she invited me to be part of the fun.

I had such a good time photographing her delicious food, and eating it wasn’t a chore either. I’ve had a sneaky PDF of the book for a while now and have really enjoyed whipping up some of the fast and easy recipes (especially noodles with miso butter, and pasta with rocket almond sauce). Now that I have a hard back version I’ll be getting into the feasts and projects chapters. (Looking at you halloumi cheesecake, pulled chicken, and pain au chorizo).

Hungry and Frozen Cookbook

There’s a release party on Tuesday at Unity books so I’ll link to them for your Hungry & Frozen: 150+ Oh-So-Delicious Recipes, from Fast to Fancy purchasing. Go forth and cook!

These are some of the photos taken over the course of two months that aren’t in the book. Anyone else feeling hungry?

Hungry and Frozen Cookbook

Hungry and Frozen Cookbook

Hungry and Frozen Cookbook

Hungry and Frozen Cookbook

Hungry and Frozen Cookbook

Hungry and Frozen Cookbook

Hungry and Frozen Cookbook

Hungry and Frozen Cookbook

Hungry and Frozen Cookbook

Hungry and Frozen Cookbook

New Orleans’ Sunday Jazz Brunch, Logan Brown

Logan Brown

It’s that magical time of year when Wellington on a Plate is back in town. Last year we went to the fantastic Whisky Breakfast at Arthur’s, this year we decided on the New Orleans Jazz Brunch at Logan Brown. It was an obvious choice, and having never been to Logan Brown a chance to experience food usually priced out of our reach.

We were seated upstairs in the private dining area. Only four tables are up that narrow winding staircase, thankfully Sarah-Rose, Laura, and Tim were seated next to us at the balcony edge, rulers of the land. I have no idea how the staff manage to carry hot plates up those stairs.

Logan Brown

The $70 ticket included coffee & beignets to start, a cocktail, main, and dessert. Everything was incredible, the beignets were soft and lightly dusted with icing sugar, the coffee good. Our cocktails – one each of the double rum Hurricane, and the mint julep – were strong. I don’t like to be coddled with my cocktails, I want to taste the alcohol, so these were perfect.

Our choice of mains: seafood and sausage gumbo, eggs crawkitty, and sticky fried chicken seemed like perfect New Orleans choices. My gumbo was rich, the sausage added spice and I tried what was potentially my first oyster. Par cooked in the gumbo it was sour but excellent, the texture however left me glad I’d never had one raw!

Though I’m avoiding sugar at the moment it would have been rude not to eat the pecan pie dessert.

Logan Brown

Logan Brown

The service at Logan Brown was some of the best I’ve ever experienced. Our waiter was attentive & kept our water constantly topped up. When our food started to get cold because we were with the tarot card reader our dishes were sent back to be made again!
Even the bartender took time to point out all the sea creatures in the rock pool built into the bar.

Unfortunately for you the event sold out ages ago. If you didn’t manage to get a ticket you should absolutely give Logan Brown’s Dine menu a chance. Your lunch or dinner may not be accompanied by the Valley Stompers Jazz Band but you should be able to catch a glimpse of the wee cray hanging out at the bar.

Logan Brown

Logan Brown

Logan Brown

Get pickled

Holy moly. Last night we went to Pickle with Brendan’s family.
We were lucky enough to try the Pickle Dinner Party which we’d seen on the menu last time we were there. Basically you choose either the $35 or $45 option and talk to the chef about what you particularly like on the menu, what you dislike, and declare any allergies. The $45 menu gets you some fancier ingredients and a couple of extra treats.

Our table of six was easy, the Pickle menu is always amazing so we all took turns reading things out and exclaiming yummmmmm. The chef could do what he liked as far as we were concerned.

It was pretty much amazing. You get to try an incredible number of dishes without getting overfull and the price makes it easy to give it a go.

Here’s what we had, all food was shared on the table, except for when it obviously couldn’t be.

  • Frickles (whole fried pickles)
  • Sliced raw vegetables with avocado and ash salt - Pickle

  • Raw sliced vegetables to dip in avocado and ash salt
  • Asian salad with pulled pork - Pickle

  • Individual Vietnamese salads with pulled pork
  • Soy soba
  • Carne salada with rocket and parmesan - Pickle

  • Carne salada with rocket and parmesan
  • Kingfish ceviche
  • Crumbed fish sliders with tartare
  • Clear tomato soup - pickle

  • Clear tomato soup
  • Salmon with cucumber balls in a butter sauce - Pickle

  • Warm salmon with cucumber balls in butter sauce
  • Lentils with fried cheese and grilled vegetables
  • Duck on black rice with orange and sesame - Pickle

  • Duck on black rice with orange, and sesame crackers
  • Chicken with basil pesto - Pickle

  • Chicken with basil pesto
  • Mini creme brulee in egg shells - Pickle

  • Creme brûlée
  • Jars of chocolate mousse with salted caramel fudge - Pickle

  • Chocolate mousse with chocolate crumbs
  • Salted caramel fudge
  • And a white chocolate, raspberry, and peppercorn chocolate bar to take home.

Phew!

(sorry about the photo quality dropping dramatically as the sun went down.)

Wayward, Newtown

Wayward Newtown

Smoked meats and giant chunks of bread, American whiskey, outdoor dining. Joe and Mike nail it again at Wayward with a small, perfect menu. Everything is affordable and unpretentious, so much so that some of the beer is offered in cans and probably what you were drinking 10 years before craft beer became a thing. (If you’re really buggin’ for a wider range of craft beer you can head inside to Monterey.)

My favourite was the spiced rye – a $6 shot of Wild Turkey Rye with spices added by the Wayward crew. It was sweet and almost worryingly easy to drink.

The fries were crispy, the smoked brisket tender and smokey, the sauce and coleslaw added moistness to dip the giant chunk of bread in. Everything served on wooden boards which made for easy cutting and scooping, and thankfully with the outdoor setting I didn’t feel too bad for being an incredibly messy eater.

Wayward Newtown
Wayward Newtown
Wayward Newtown
Wayward Newtown
Wayward Newtown
Wayward Newtown
Wayward Newtown

Wayward Newtown

Arthur’s Whisky Breakfast

I’ve been eagerly awaiting the Arthur’s Whisky Breakfast since booking tickets back in June.

On arrival at Arthur’s we were taken up the stairs and shown to our designated seats…not with our friends. We hadn’t booked tickets together but had naively assumed we’d be able to sit wherever we liked. Thankfully the team at Arthur’s (and Martha’s!) know service well and didn’t let it register on their faces just how annoying we were being messing up their seating arrangements. It was all okay in the end, Brendan and I sat at “the best table in the place” with Laura, Tim, and Paul.

Cranachan

A menu sat at on our plates showing us what to look forward to and coffee orders were taken (not included in the price but rich and delicious). An introduction to the Whisky Breakfast and Arthur’s was made by co-owner Anita (McLeod, wearing the McLeod tartan) and we were given a brief history lesson on the building. Courtney was introduced as our taste master for the morning and our first course of cranachan was served with Macallan whisky.

Kedgeree

Next the kedegeree was served with a Japanese whisky. We’ve been wanting to try Japanese whisky for a while and this one bought out spiciness in the kedgeree beautifully. Courtney told us to save out money for something better though. The Yamazaki has taken advantage of recent awards won by Japanese whiskies and flooded the market. I loved the smell of Yamazaki, it reminded me of fruit mince, and the taste was fine if a bit sharp. But Courtney suggested us buying one less bottle or saving a bit longer to get something better like Nikka Yoichi.

Rabbit Pie

A rabbit pie with whisky onion jam was served with the Islay classic Laphraoig. I love Islay whiskies with their strong smokey peat flavours.

Finally we were served a whisky hot chocolate with shortbread. Ardmore whisky mixed with dairy milk chocolate that we just didn’t want to end.

Despite the incredible food and whisky on offer the highlight was hearing Courtney talk about the whiskies and her job as the spirits equivalent of a sommelier.

Selling spirits for Moore Wilson’s she sometimes had a few hundred open bottles sitting on her shelves, Courtney refused to let a customer spend big money on stock without having tasted the product. Likewise she said she doesn’t approve of people selling spirits if they don’t like drinking themselves, and she’s sick of bar staff at good establishments knowing long histories of their cocktails and nothing about the whiskies behind the counter.

Arthur’s Whisky Breakfast tickets sold out weeks after going on sale but if you’re attending on either of the next two Saturdays you are in for a treat!

Whisky Breakfast menu

Everything else Melbourne

Templestowe

Op-shopping

I’m no expert on vintage brands or styles. I don’t even know much of anything about current brands and styles. But I like what I like, and I like what Melbourne has to offer.

While there we stayed in the heart of Melbourne’s gentrified bohemian scene – Fitzroy/Collingwood. The area is dominated by excellent cafes and vintage shops. I spent $100 on a second hand dress from Vintage Garage in Collingwood, mostly because I loved the pattern and it fits perfectly, but also because I really loved the shop. It’s curated by a number of collectors and arranged beautifully with rows hanging clothing racks and glass cabinets displaying all manner of accessories and collectibles.

Vintage Garage really was a delight to shop in and we were left to explore the store as long as we liked.

A few streets over in Fitzroy is Brunswick Street’s Red Cross store. It stood out enough that I made a note on my phone to remind myself of the great selection, cute staff, and good music.

You really can’t go wrong if you just spend a day exploring everything on Smith and Brunswick streets.

The majority of my Melbourne purchases were made at a couple of Savers stores. Savers is a long established warehouse style recycled clothing chain with most of its branches in Melbourne. I first visited the branch in Footscray and found a blouse that I’ve worn a lot since. But one of the Kiwi staff from the Proud Mary cafe suggested I catch a tram to the Brunswick branch. (Note that Brunswick St and Brunswick are completely different areas. Every fucking name in Melbourne is duplicated at least once and it can get very frustrating and confusing!) I’m so glad I did! I picked up a huge amount of swag, including 2 pairs of shoes.

National Gallery of Victoria

I do like art, but I can’t spend a long time staring at a single painting or a small collection. I get bored. But the National Gallery of Victoria has free entry and once inside I realised I do actually love art, mostly 19th century, mostly dark.
While exploring the National Gallery I fell in love with the salon style Victorian Room. In a top corner hung Anguish by August Schenck, one of the most beautiful and distressing paintings I’ve seen.

Napoleon
NGV

Markets

The Queen Vic Market is a must visit if you haven’t been before. The food is excellent and the trinkets will make you appreciate just how much crap you could possibly have in your life. If you’re looking for cheap clothing you’ll find it here. And at $5-$10 off inner city prices (for the exact same item).

For something more special you should check out the Rose St Artist Market. It’s a handmade market open on Staurdays in Fitzroy. We left with a Carey Potter painting and a Write to Me stationery brochure.

Extras

  • If you like movies then you have to see something at Astor Theatre. It’s big and old and beautiful and has a resident cat.
  • Olympic Donuts at Footscray Train Station cannot be beaten.
  • The pho at Hien Vuong (Pasteur), 146 Hopkins St, Footscray is excellent. The large size bowls are ridiculously HUGE.
  • Dumplings from Shanghai Street Dumpling, 342 Little Bourke St are worth waiting in line for.
  • Rooftop Bar on Swanston St is moderately priced and has excellent views. The novelty of being so high up without being pushed around by the wind was not lost on this Wellingtonian.
  • The State Library of Victoria is quite stunning if you’re into architecture. We didn’t look at any of the books but spent some time looking at the exhibitions.

Sunrise
Untitled
Green
Alley
Girl and Elephant graffiti
Yarn bombed
St Kilda
Roller Coaster
Carousel
Luna park and wolf
Untitled
Baby dino
State Library of Victoria
Books
Birdman Eating
Untitled
Sebastian
Burgers and Fries
GOD
Train Station
Stop
Sunrise in Collingwood // Fitzroy // Vine covered house // Bars in alleyways // Graffiti // Yarn bombed bike // St Kilda // Luna Park // Melbourne Museum // State Library of Victoria // Birdman Eating // Alleys // Sebastian // Burgers and Fries at Rooftop Bar // St Paul’s Cathedral // Flinders St Station

Wellington on a Plate

A Monday night, dark and wet as most of them are at this time of year. My friends in high places are at the 2012 Wellington on a Plate launch, but I’m somewhere better…in bed with the WOAP site and at least 30 tabs open to investigate the offerings.

The offerings this year didn’t grab me as quickly as 2011, there’s a lot of hapuka (fish) and Parkvale mushrooms on the menus (delicious no doubt, but not exciting), but the more I look the more I like.

When the printed programme was released I painstakingly went through it marking the tastiest sounding dishes in the Dine section. I gave extra points for a menu that made me want to eat everything.

There are surprisingly (and sadly) not many vegetarian entries this year. Especially in the burger section which was won by a vegetarian burger in 2011, and yet there are three dessert burgers on the menu. Was this a result of the collective unconscious or are dessert burgers being paraded on the NY food catwalks?

My picks for each section:

Event

Arthur’s Whiskey Breakfast – $80

This will be the first time I attend something from the WOAP Event section and it really wasn’t a hard choice. Breakfast and whisk(e)y, two of my favourite things. A four course breakfast with matched whiskeys sounds like heaven.

I’m super excited to be attending on the 11th.

Burger

Mexi Jalapeño Popper Burger – $17.50

Lower Hutt’s Hot! Like a Mexican! (formerly Las Margaritas) burger is going to get me on a bus, that’s how good it sounds. Beef, jalapeno, onions, salsa, and sour cream with a side of corn chips and guacamole.

It’s also the only burger in Burger Wellington that has a vegetarian option.

Dine

Fork & Brewer Lunch – $25

This was by far the hardest section to pick just one offer from. But the Fork & Brewer know how to win a girl’s heart: with mac & cheese. Or more precisely – Mac & Beer-Cheese: Macaroni served with a Scotch ale beer–cheese sauce and smoked pork lardons.

Their lunch menu includes 2 courses and a glass of Wellington regional beer. I’d pair the mac & beer cheese with beer brioche pudding and a dark beer that will compliment the rich meal (go big or go home!).

This August is going to be an expensive month with the NZ Film Festival and WOAP both on. But they’re worth saving your dollars for.

Awesome shit that you should think about gifting to the people you love #2 – Recipes


+ // +

Everyone loves food. Delicious home cooked food is even better. Delicious home cooked food that mixes in all the best ingredients – best ever!

A pretty parcel of salted caramel cookies tied with a bow. Chocolate mixed with berries and chilli set into the shape of unicorns. Pint sized rainbow cakes in mason jars (if you do it right they will keep unopened for AGES so you can make them well in advance). Mini pulled pork or bacon and egg pies. Olive and rosemary bread. Jars of bacon infused whisky. The possibilities are endless and interesting.

However.

You could go one better for your people that love to cook.

Instead of making them something how about giving them the recipe and ingredients. Hand craft a fancy recipe card from card stock, doilies, and fat felt pens – you could even laminate it so the butter and flour wipes right off.
If it’s cookies or cake you could layer the dry ingredients in a jar. All they need to do is tip it into a bowl and add eggs and butter.

If you’re super amazing (and have lots of time) think about making a collection of your favourite recipes.

If you’re like me you’ve got recipes bookmarked all over the internet, post its in your cookbooks to mark pages, and print outs that people have emailed you. Type them up, scan them, or work on writing them out over the course of a year. Print them in a book. Stick them on themed recipe cards and present in a wooden box. Hand out card stock to everyone and get them to write up their favourites.

If you go the recipe card in a box option make sure you include a few blanks for them to fill in later. Note the size of them down for yourself and you’ve got xmas and birthdays sorted forever!

Boom.

Artichokes

We scored three artichokes for $1.50 in the sale bin at the supermarket yesterday which is a saving of $4.50 PER ARTICHOKE apparently.

I love artichokes but I’d never actually cooked and eaten them whole like this before, usually I’d have artichoke hearts with an antipasto platter or on a pizza. Brend reached back into his mind grapes to remember how they ate artichokes in Spain. People would turn up to parties with bags full of them and they’d steam them and eat them with nothing else!

We steamed ours for about 20 minutes until they went dark green, then dipped the edible parts of the leaves and the hearts in a butter, garlic, lemon thyme, and basil sauce. So good.

Make sure you get rid of all the fluffy stuff in the middle (the choke) before you eat the heart, it gets caught in your throat big time. No fun.

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Glamingtons

Green Lamingtons

Did you know that making lamingtons is super easy if you use store bought sponge?

I’d only made these lamingtons once before, and they were the classic kiwi raspberry flavour. This time I decided to treat my friends to some lime lamingtons for our election gathering. Lime is green and most of us are Green voters. Geddit?

What you need:
1 store bought sponge cake
1 packet of jelly
Dessicated coconut

  • Make jelly up with 1 and 1/4 cups of boiling water (instead of the 2 cups the pack asks for). Let it cool in the fridge till it just starts to set.
  • Trim the dark edges off your sponge and cut it into about 12 pieces.
  • Dip all sides of the sponge cake in cold jelly mix and then roll each piece in coconut.
  • Repeat for all of your pieces. Cut a slit in each lamington and add cream if you like it like that.
Take the dark edges off the sponge
Sponge
Lime Jelly
Jelly and coconut
Put the sponge in the jelly
Green Lamingtons
Green Lamingtons

How easy is that!