Friday 28 March 2008

Bloggers Banquet, The Sequel.

Just a reminder to all fellow bloggers that BBII is NEXT Sat, that's Sat 5th April.

12.30 onwards.

BYO everything.

If you still haven't RSVP'd, or you've lost the address, just email me at

minor(underscore)deity1 (at) hotmail.

The outdoor oven will be fired, and obviously indoor cooking facilities will be available if ya needs them.

There's also a 8 burner BBQ with wok attachment if you need it.

This event is open to all food bloggers.

If you haven't applied, it's not too late... send me an email, with a link to your blog, so I can check it out.

Looking forward to catching up.


Wednesday 26 March 2008

Come and spend an hour in my tower, with no power!

Ok, it's a cheesy title, but I couldn't resist combining a bad 70's pick up phrase with an agent of social change.. I'm kinda like that.

Anyhoo.. Earth Hour.

It started with a question: How can we inspire people to take action on climate change?

The answer: Ask the people of Sydney to turn off their lights for one hour.

On 31 March 2007, 2.2 million people and 2100 Sydney businesses turned off their lights for one hour - Earth Hour. If the greenhouse reduction achieved in the Sydney CBD during Earth Hour was sustained for a year, it would be equivalent to taking 48,616 cars off the road for a year.

With Sydney icons like the Harbour Bridge and Opera House turning their lights off, and unique events such as weddings by candlelight, the world took notice. Inspired by the collective effort of millions of Sydneysiders, many major global cities are joining Earth Hour in 2008, turning a symbolic event into a global movement.

For more info go here.

As part of my family's commitment to SOLE and all that it entails, we'll be taking 3 of the kids into Melbourne (Yeah, I know.. carbon emissions.. but the 4th kid has a function in town, and we made the decision to stay in the city for the duration of the party, and then pick her up, rather than make 2 return trips).

Before we leave, we're turning off all out appliances at the wall (except fridge and freezer), and we're packing a SOLE picnic dinner to have in town. We have spoken to the kids about Earth Hour and why we're doing it.

I am hoping to find out if there are any candle powered events in town, at Birrarung Mar or Fed Square. I'd appreciate it if anyone knows it there is anything on in town, otherwise we'll just find a park, or have our picnic in Fed Square. Any Melbournites are welcome to bring a basket and join us!

So, what are YOU doing for Earth Hour??

Tuesday 25 March 2008

From pizza to jambalaya via omelettes.

you've seen enough pics of my pizzas to know what they look like. However, what the hell does one do with enormous amounts of left-over sliced tomatoes, onions, mushrooms, anchovies, antipasto, ham and capsicums??

You make omelette's for breaky, thats what.

Take 4 organic, free-range eggs, break into a bowl and add a splash of milk, a twist of pepper and some salt. Pour mix into a hot cast iron pan, seasoned with some browning butter. Here's the key to perfect light fluffy omelettes. LEAVE THE BLOODY THING ALONE. Don't poke it, prod it, swirl it, just stand back and wait until the sides pull away from the pan and the mix is mostly set. Then whack in a handful of grated cheese and pop under a griller until fully set and the cheese is melted.

While this is happening, grab random handfuls of ham, tomatoes, onions and mushrooms and fry off in another pan until all smooshy and juicy. Add more cheese, (in the vain hope of getting thru all these bloody leftovers. Sigh meaningfully when you realise that you STILL have 3 kgs of cheese and enough sliced tommies left over to fix the World's hunger crisis)

Serve the omelette topped with the meat mix and scoff. Believe me, this will get you thru a long day of cleaning up after the day before and preparing your house for the winner of Menu for Hope next week.

FINALLY make it home to GW and unload everything you loaded into the car only an hour ago. Eventually find time to think about dinner. Decide to freeze the remaining ham, but using the leftover prawns as an inspiration, come up with a jambalaya kind of thing.

Slow braised the remaining onions, tomatoes, capsicums and mushrooms in some of the left over sun-dried tomato oil, until completely broken down. This took me about three hours. Add 2 leftover anchovies for depth. If the mix becomes too dry, add a slurp of white wine. When all lovely and smooshy, add some arborio rice and let this absorb all the juice. When rice is cooked, add the left-over prawns and top with a sprinkle of Louisiana's finest "Slap yo Mama!" jambalaya seasoning. Serve with a wedge of lemon.

Families are weird creatures.

yes indeed they are. My history is littered with times where I haven't seen **ahem** eye-to-eye with my fam of origin. Because of various ishews.. some clearly self-inflicted and induced, there has been a history of being on the outer of my fam.

So I was both shocked and chuffed when Furry suggested we invite the fam to Chez Fur for Easter lunch. And equally shocked and chuffed when, en masse, the accepted.

Being the cuckoo in the nest, particularly in regard to food, I dithered furiously over what to serve.

I erred on the side of caution and went with pizzas in the outdoor oven. My table was laid with a variety of goodies, ham and salami, onions, mushrooms, tomatoes, capsicums, prawns, cheeses, sun dried tommies, grilled capsicums and anchovies.

**side SOLE note** A V slicer is a SOLE-ful way of preparing veggies. 6 large end-of-season beefsteak tommies can be sliced fine enough on a V slicer to provide pizza topping for 20 people.

$200 got me everything I needed, and as per my previous post, only the pizza bases, anchovies and pasata was not locally sourced. The mushrooms were Victorian (Northern Melbourne).

I am thrilled to say the whole day was a huge smash hit!! Cousin JJ manned the oven like a pro! for a family often obsessed with hygiene, eating with the fingers, from communal platters proved a huge hit. Aunties and SIL's bought fresh fruit and meringues, Mater Beige made her marvelous iceream slice, chocolate googie-eggs abounded and much laughter, mirth and merriment was had by all.

It left me to thinking, about families and all, that despite glaring differences (whether they be religious, ethics, social justice or politically based), that sometime food really IS the great leveler. And that eating together really does (re) inforce bonds of blood.

Thursday 20 March 2008

SOUL lunch for 25

It's Easter, Eostre, Samhain (here in the Southern Hemi).. whatever it is you celebrate at this time of the year... and like Christmas, it's essentially a Christian holy-day that most people celebrate in an increasingly secular way.

Most Easters in our house mean a trip to Dromana where Furry and I have our wee shack, and also my family has its holiday house, dating back to 1967. Usually we catch up, do an Easter egg hunt for the kiddies and then go out to lunch somewhere as a family. Memorable outings have been the Cape Schanck Country Club, but last years visit to the Safety Beach Golf Club left us all with a bad taste in the mouth. This is a family that consumes my darling mother's Cat's Vom Stew, but even people with taste buds ruined by that particular dish baulked at the swill that was served last year.
So this year, now that the oven is up and running, I have offered to have all the fam to our house. About 25 people all up.

And this is my challenge to myself..

I am going to do a lunch based, as much as I can, on SOLE.

I have ordered my smoked ham and bacon from Coolart Smokehouse (8 Erramosa Road, Somerville, ph: 5977 5733) who source all their beasts from a single sourced free range herd in Hastings.

I am off to the farmers market on Sat morning for the last of the season's tommies, capsicums and asparagus (if I'm lucky)

My sources have yet to find a mushroom supplier down on the MP, but I hold out great hopes of my Greek friends knowing where to get some.

A quick trip to the organic shop on Cape Schanck Road for some free range googie eggs and a few other titbits.

And home via Red Hill Cheesery for some fetta and cheddar

Shopping SOLE-y AND having a lovely relaxing drive at the same time!

Now... if someone can tell me where to get SOLE pizza bases or pita breads, so I don't have to make my own dough I'll be a happy camper!

Wednesday 19 March 2008

Food Porn Meme

Smokey Mountain Breakdown: Food Porn Meme Friday ~ The Food Porn Meme

I just got tagged in my first meme!!! Huzzah!!! And by a long time lurking fan!! I feel like my wee little blog is all growed up!!

Initiated by Rosie, over at Smokey Mountain Breakdown.

"she is a writer of Southern Gothic fiction and erstwhile keeper of goats. I'm laying the blame for the following nonsense squarely at her feet! Food Porn she has requested, and food porn she shall get."

from Kazari over at "I think I have a recipe for that."

So, thanks to my tagger, Silver Moon Dragon, over at Dragon Musings, I present my answers!!

1. What food do you consider the best “date” food? In other words, what meal or food item do you think is sexiest to eat in the company of someone you would like to look sexy around?

Hmm... Well, there's "sexy" food, AND then there's date food. Things I consider a complete no-no on first dates are thinks like slurpy pastas and exploding souvies. If a snog is a possibility I avoid anything with garlic or onions. Furry once told me, early on, that he loved to watch me eat, as I do it with "gusto", but we've been together long enough that I get still get a shag, even if I've had the chilli garlic ginger onion bhaji's and he's gone the salad.

Sexy date food (as opposed to early on "I-might-get-a shag-or-at-least-a-snog" date food) is anything that makes you moan, anything that makes you dribble a bit of sauce and have to lick it off your chin.. or your forearm, anything that makes you sigh.

Eating with your hands is sexy. Getting messy is sexy (all those thought of cleaning each other up, hmm...), so I am voting for a cold, local Mornington Peninsula seafood platter, with various dipping sauces

2. What well-known person would you like to share a meal with—with or without clothing. (saying whether or not clothes are involved is optional).

I want to eat Bruny Bay oysters off Angeline Jolie's naked body. Johnny Depp, also nekkid, will be waiting in the wings, smeared with chocolates and studded with Red Hill organic strawberries, for dessert.

Is that sharing??

3. What does your perfect breakfast-in-bed look like? (Food AND the details, please. Candles? Music? Flowers? Hot tub? Dancing girls?)

The Age and the Australian Sunday papers, unlimited time to do the cryptic crossword, sourdough bread, toasted, 2 perfectly poached eggs, some smoked salmon, some crispy bacon, a grilled tommie or two, with a side of grilled organic filed 'shrooms, out Chez Fur on a winter's day. The rain is hammering on the tin roof, the house is warm and Furry's made the breakkie.

After completing said breakkie and crosswords, I roll over and go back to sleep

Not very porn-y, but hell, I am a working mother of 5.. this is about as luxurious as it gets!!

4. What do you consider the best application of whipped cream to be?

I don't DO whipped cream, except as an ingredient in ice cream or chocolate Cointreau mousse.

But if Johnny and/or Angelina turned up at the door, BEGGING me to lick it off, well... I guess I'd force myself.

(Hell, if Johnny or Angelina tuned up covered in someone else's snot, and begged me to lick it off, I'd do it!)

5. Oh-God-No, Biff, the yacht is sinking! You are sent to the galley to retrieve the food. What luxury food items do you snatch first? The champagne? The caviar? Smoked Salmon? Truffles? Chocolate? Or something else?

Biff, daw-link.. the yacht is sinking! Send a servant to the galley (cos I have no idea where such a place would even BE!) and grab the Jamon Iberica haunch, the 18 doz Bruny Bay oysters, the Iranian Special Reserve Beluga, the Monte Cristo No. 2 Cuban cigars, the kilo of Alba truffles!! Angelina, Johhny and I will meet you in the life boats!!

And I tag:

Gobbler (cos I reckon he's a bit of a naughty lad, and I'd like to see his answers)
Squishy (cos she's a mum of a blended family like me, and I reckon her answers would rock!)
Duncan (cos he's another dark horse, whom I suspect has a "naughty" side)
Possum chops (cos I'd like to get to know her better)

and in the spirit of my meme predecessors, someone I lurk at, but have never had any contact with:

Stone Soup (cos she's recently started snogging a cute Irish boy, and may have more to add....)

Tuesday 18 March 2008

Garden Street Cafe

Garden Street Cafe.
Crn Garden Street and Powder Works Road
North Narabeen, NSW
02 991312 33

fig and chocolate meringues

A HUGE selection of teas!

Get this stuff toasted for breakkie!!

Read about this here

On our recent sojourn to Sydders, we stayed with lovely friends in the Tree house... and the best bit of all?? Across the road was this wee place. Go and say Hi to Marrianne, and get some of her banana bread toasted, or a REAL chai... not that crap powdered stuff. She makes her own muesli (ask for the Under the counter stuff.. not as pretty as the one on display, but MUCH better) and does a mean trade in bacon and egg rolls. Her vegetarian frittata is da BOMB! and her fig and chokkie meringues are UNBELIEVABLE!!! She'll whack you up a chicken and vegie rissole on ciabatta or a smoked salmon sanga. Excellent value and quality food!

Random pics that I'll never blog about.

Sigh.. that's the thing with blogging.. particularly about food.. you end up with more ideas that you could ever hope to blog about. I knew I was a food obsessive when Furry went from complaining that I took photos of food, to pausing and waiting before tucking in, so I could get "that" shot.

So, on cleaning out my camera, in preparation for this Sunday's SOLE/localvore luncheon, I realised that I have 197 photos on my camera, and only 2 of them contain a human face.. and then, only unexpectedly!! OH.. and one was of a spider web for the never-written "Sunday arvo on the balcony in the tree house" post.

So, dear reader.... sigh with the possibility of all that might have been, and make up your own stories.

Saturday 15 March 2008

Best Laksa EVER!!!

To's Malaysian Gourmet

Shop 3
169 Miller St, North Sydney, NSW 2060
(02) 9955 2088

I am a laksa eating fool. Seriously, laksa is good for whatever ails you. It's perfect Summer food. perfect Winter food, perfect snack food, perfect hangover food. It's also bloody easy. Which is why I am often disappointed with the quality of what is passed off in some establishments as "laksa". Note to readers: The crap that is sold as laksa in most suburban "food courts" is not LAKSA.

So I was chuffed when, last week in Sydney, the delicious Grocer asked Furry and I to accompany her to her fave laksa house. Jokes about my syntax and typing skills aside, we had a wonderful time. The laksa served here is the real deal. The balance between sweet and salty was perfect. The fish sauce was subtle, but present enough in the second note to perfectly compliment the coconut milk. The chicken was fall-apart tender, and the skin tofu was generous. A super generous helping of smokey chilli paste added another dimention.

Furry, who was suffering through the 2nd worst hangover of his life was initially skeptical, but a serve of their AMAZING spring rolls and some deep-fried tofu skin wrapped around sweet pork, set him aright!!

A quick jaunt back to Grocer's to meet WORLD'S BEST DOG (Hi, Fella!!) and to sample WORLD'S BEST MILK, made for a most excellent day!

Tuesday 4 March 2008

Heading North...

Unfortunately NOT to Alaska, but instead to the beautiful Sydney!! Hopefully to catch up with Grocer and stay with some mates.

Stand-by for pie reviews as we head up the Hume, maybe a burger review or two, and plenty of food porn from our holiday.

See y'all next week!!