Tuesday, 28 August 2012

It's Been Far Too Long


Left you in the dark cold night, didn't leave a note, didn't say where I was going and for that I give you my sincere apologies.

I have no rightful excuse, I have no dying confession to make, no life threatening disaster - I have simply been idle and much too preoccupied with my personal life - sorry!

So what has been happening since last I saw thee. Well the answer to that is a resoundingly boring one.

I've been tired and all together a bit of a slob. I'm sure we all get those moments (if you say no to this than I'm sure you are not being honest with yourself or you are not human). Too preoccupied with the inner workings of my brain with little energy to string words together. In truth, I have been a little lost and asking myself the most silliest of questions but alas I have returned.

Ok, so nothing of life changing weight has ravaged my little world so let us catch up on the small life of me:

Apart from sleeping, eating, sitting on buses, boring my way through uni, getting the boot from my comfortable job (if you aren't a Queenslander you won't get this - but low down is that public servants are getting the sack as our new government tries to fix our ginormous debt...long story and much too tiresome to repeat again). But apart from that I have turned yet another year older!

I think birthdays are really important things. Without them we wouldn't exist. I haven't exactly grown up in an environment which spoils you with birthday surprises. I was infinitely jealous of my school friends. Come their birthday they would tell tales of waking up to breakfast in bed, balloons outside their door, kids would open their lunch boxes to the sight of a slice of cake, confetti, their favourite treats or a surprise card from mum, complete with the tacky familiar song as they open it with happy hands.
Again, a generational and cultural gap stands between the healthy relationship of daughter and parent.
I do believe I just needed to rant on that for a bit as this state of mind tends to conquer my world come each birthday. Self loathing is indeed much too unhealthy.

Thank god for friends and siblings who understand birthdays are a time of joy. As the song goes - we could be heroes just for one day.

But enough enough I'm going to drop some honesty.

I still adore writing, I still am entirely in the dark about my future but I've come to realise as is the rest of the world (well. Most)

So be optimistic and place your faith in my hands for I will remain writing whether people say yes or no to me - maybe it is the one thing I like doing (that isn't a waste of time rewatching the best of my tv collection)

So yes, this semester I may be a little fleeting - like those hip pop up restaurants or spontaneous theatre productions, an unexpected sun beam through the window - I will be here as much as I can and as long as I have something worthy to tell thee.

I will post something more tasty within the week but surprises as to what day...


Tuesday, 21 August 2012

TT: The English Way

To keep calm and carry on? To talk about the weather constantly? To have a stiff upper lip?

Yes all the above but today I'm talking about the fine English tradition of my favourite afternoon activity - HIGH TEA!!!

These days you can get any generic high tea at any local cafe or hotel joint but sometimes nothing beats the quiet intimacy of your own backyard. With a little touch of individuality and always a lot of class.

I decided to christen our new outdoor extension with sweets and cucumber sandwiches amongst close friends - what a way to say hello.

It's always good to have options - so a serving of plenty is key. Coconut tea, lemongrass & ginger and of course the obligatory yet classically traditional English Breakfast tea. Then there's all the savoury deliciousness found in the beauty of tiny bite sized sandwiches, I also went a little fancy and rolled a few smoked salmon numbers. Baked fresh that morning - some lovely buttermilk scones, flourless brownies, mini vanilla cupcakes and coconut and apricot fingers.

Dress your table up - note to self - buy more pretty things!
And you have every right to keep calm and have one delightfully smashing high tea.

PS: Sorry about the lack of post on Sunday.... not going to lie but this might be happening a little bit as this uni semester is more cramped then a Japanese subway - so my palm are sweaty, my tension high and my spare time short.


Friday, 17 August 2012

FF: Goodbye London

Oh Great Britain - I still love you (always have, always will).

The Olympic closing ceremony was something the dear ol' Brits should be pretty proud of. The English should be pretty darn chuffed with the past two weeks, in fact maybe the closing ceremony makes up for that horrible opening number.

In essence - a mass concert filled with the best of the British. Granted I had to deal with seeing One Direction yet again, and yes maybe Jessie J hogged the light a little with two numbers but all in all I was rather impressed. I mean Eric Idle singing Always Look on the Bright Side of Life that is absolute gold - and unlike Hey Jude, a rather fitting song. Random man being fired from a canon, ballet dancers, The Who, Wonderwall - I say top notch job.

Two words - Spice. Girls! They sure spiced up my life.

And they delivered what I asked for - black London taxis! What would make that even better? light up taxis with the Spice Girls riding on top.

Kate Moss - how is it that I can hate and love you at the same time? A celebration of all the super models this land has given the world -

This is what I wanted! Showcase your great monuments and have Shakespeare quotes sprawled across the stage - thank you!

For more click here

Images are from nymag.


Tuesday, 14 August 2012

TT: Cupcake

This is my little nod to the Ekka. The inspiration was those iconic Strawberry sundaes.

It's white chocolate cupcakes with a raspberry butter frosting! Thought I'd use my pretty new candy cane striped paper cups for they screamed happy days and childish whimsy - fond memories of mind blowing excitement as a child counting down the days till I was playing around at the Ekka, eating as much fairy floss as my stomach could handle and nagging the parents for more showbags (these are bags which you can purchase filled with all sorts of goodies - mainly lollies and novelty toys - it's a heaven for the young).

I'm back Friday with the last of my Olympic obsession.

PS: As part of a unit I'm studying in journalism I have to keep up a weekly blog - so yes double work for me but just in case the world of online journalism is a random curiosity of yours check it out here. (and there will be no missing or late posts for assessment is my underlying motivation)


Sunday, 12 August 2012

SS: Country Meets City

I have returned from another day at the wonderful EKKA - for all you non locals the Ekka is an annual show where country meets city - think school fate on steroids, or village carnival on crack. Long story short it's actual official title is called the The Royal Queensland Show.But as I never forget to tell you - we Aussies are extremely lazy and we can't help but shorten absolutely everything.

Sorry I get a little distracted with everything that is on offer - free tastings, ridiculously fatty foods - huge apologies in this department - you see, you can't go to the Ekka without eating a Dagwood Dog (google it) It's pretty much a deep fried sausage coated in this holy extremely sinful batter on a stick, doused in tomato sauce. Unfortunately I have no photo as my stomach and eyes said hell yeah way before the word photo every sprung to mind. It's a celebration of our wonderful outback, it's a bringing together of country folk and city folk. It's got it all and it is indeed an institution.

Here are a few happy snaps! Sorry that these images don't truly encapsulate the whole atmosphere of this gigantic event but believe me - it's definitely quite something.

This is it - THE strawberry sundae. Another thing that is unique to this show. I should also mention strawberries could be deemed the icon of the Ekka - there is no doubting the sweetness and ore inspiring quality of these delicious berries. I have always had this theory strawberry fields have two sections - one for general annual selling and the other reserved for Ekka. So let me explain - an ice cream cone, filled with vanilla ice cream, followed by freshly cut strawberries, topped with strawberry ice cream, topped with a little bit of whipped cream and that famous Ekka strawberry to finish the pretty picture.

Ok, so there are countless competitions ranging from dog breeding, knitting, best bird in show, cuts of hanging meat, photography and a dear favourite - cake decorating. It's epic stuff - it's legendary. People are amazing and skills are forever inspiring. These are two fine examples of cakes that are much much too pretty to eat.

Yes - that is a cake - all of it - a CAKE!

ANIMALS!!! These little cuties are a big part of my love of the country. Who wouldn't want a miniature horse.

This was taken in the feeding area - where for a $1 you walk amongst sheep and lambs of all sorts, I love getting close to them and this little baby stole my heart away.

See - I told you it was outback meets city. This is the wood chopping - got to be one of favourite parts. Yeah as in big burly men with axes hacking at wood. It is a feast of masculinity and rugged terrain. So yeah - the Ekka also has a lot of that typical Aussie idea - the man in jeans, shirt and akubra hat, possibly carrying a whip...

Signing out because I need to sleep off all that fatty food and Ekka excitement.


Saturday, 11 August 2012

FF: Fashion on the Big Screen

Sorry this is a day late I seriously had it all ready for yesterday - you can blame my preoccupation with the Olympics. Damn you Usain Bolt - why must you be so charismatic!

I love a good movie - actually I'm prone to spend my days off cuddled beneath the sheets watching movie after movie - repeat after repeat.

The fashion of the big screen has long been a fascination and I would jumps leaps and bounds to get a glimpse of a Hollywood movie set wardrobe.

I'm sure I'll miss some of my countless favourites but here are a few breathtakingly memorable frocks and looks that spontaneously spring to mind -

Typical me - Miss Audrey Hepburn is my Queen of timeless style. The minute she came on screen in this beauty, Sabrina was destined to become a classic -
She deserves a list of her own when it comes to iconic frocks

The Notebook - this is my kind of era. So many beautiful outfits from both leads. oh Allie and Noah, you really are heaven.
Why don't they make bikinis like this anymore?

Atonement = beautiful movie, beautiful actors, beautiful costume design. The gorgeous James McAvoy would not be human if he could resist Keira in that. This dress showed of Miss Knightley in every possible fashion and girls the world over wanted a replica. I for one had dreams of this. Give me a shade of green as perfect as this and I'd cower beneath anyone's feet.

Anne Hathaway really did steal my heart in The Devil Wears Prada - this is one dangerous credit card movie and I will never tire at ogling at this aesthetically beautiful film. Each outfit is absolutely wow factor - I mean can you imagine thigh high Chanel boots! Sorry, I couldn't just choose the one - it felt illegal and unforgiving.

Sticking with The Sound of Music, wasn't Liesl just stunningly innocent in this ethereal timeless frock. All those years ago my innocent wiles just wishing to be sixteen going on seventeen - again sadly being let down by reality and the deceitful promise of movie fantasy. Eager young lads and rogues and cads will offer you food and wine .... I think not. More like maccas and cheap booze

Singin in the Rain an all time favourite musical. Debbie Reynolds simply shines alongside the magical Gene Kelly. This romantic number always makes me sigh.
There are some seriously amazing frocks throughout the film and I'm itching for a rewatch.

Another Audrey film - My Fair Lady oozed feminine from every angle. Everyone always talks about THAT Ascot dress but I earn for simplicity.
This peachy number got me dreaming of clouds and sun kissed afternoons. I would love to walk on the street where you live in that.

Pretty Woman - I'm sure most of us secretly wanted to be a call girl after watching this (if only movies really did depict life accurately)... Don't we all just love this scene. She's perfectly adorable! and he's perfectly rich and wonderful.

Titanic - the great epic it was, the great dream, the romance of the tale, the tragedy of it all. Rose was every bit the perfect depiction. Yes there was the blingy dresses and the oversized hats but for me it had to be this dress.
Thanks to my special feature fetish I can tell you the costume designers spent countless days and nights perfecting this dress to make sure it looked stunning both dry and wet.

Sorry, I couldn't resist another Hepburn classic. Discovering the city of Rome on a Vespa wearing this is definitely a fantasy of mine. It is so simple and yet so covetable.

Ok, that's enough! I better stop before it get's messy and my fickle minds starts clicking the add to cart button.


Tuesday, 7 August 2012

TT: Experimental

... and here it is!

Each year I turn my kitchen into a wannabe masterchef bench. This year is slightly different - I truly was masterchefing the pants off it.

For the first time in my small culinary history I decided to go without a recipe. Yep - I decided to use my gut instinct and my somewhat learned brain to come up with my own little invention - it truly was an "invention test" and I think I may have just succeeded with minimal kinks in the armour.

Baked lime cheesecake, topped with lime sour cream, coconut milk ice cream, raspberry jelly, a sour cream and lime jelly and a pistachio praline.

So this is the result -

Too much gelatine in the sour cream, too little gelatine in the raspberry, probably a little too thick on the cheesecake base. Super chuffed about my simply yet delicious ice cream and finely crushed pistachio praline which added that lovely textural crunch to the dish - tre Masterchef indeed.

My creative juices were flowing as I decided to set my home-made jelly in the empty lime shells.


SS: More Foodie Scenes

Round 2 -

Here are some more shots from Regional Flavours - just like the food, the people were looking pretty damn delicious!

Loving these pants. Sometimes nothing beats comfort.

Run chef, run!

Absolutely digging this girl's comfortable yet stylish cardi and jean combo

Just had to take a photo of this carefree family -

There will always be those who throw away the rule book. No inhibitions, unconcerned about the opinions of the cruel world - they may be the bravest of us all.

Random shoes...

Stick around for today's TT....


FF: Olympic Style

Yes it might be not be Friday or Sunday but I am bombarding you with three posts today - better late then never right?
So here goes -

Well we can't talk Olympic style without mentioning THE gorgeous duchess. Absolutely loving her constant devotion to her job. I couldn't stop at one outfit for there are simply too many to aww and wow about - well done yet again Kate -

She's really been over wearing these wedges and blazer - but hey we all do it and it's just working and I love how appropriately casual and understated British the whole story it -

For the dressier occasion - she annoyingly shines yet again

Another royal - a favourite of mine... blue shirt = epic win! ;) Simply compare the two side by side - A perfect example of how a man wears his clothes rather than the clothes wearing him.

An older yet still classy duchess. She gets a lot of cop but I would like to put in a good word for her -

I absolutely love Stella McCartney's Team Great Britain's uniforms, they are super stylish and, modern and despite the controversy of the union jack being only blue- I say bollocks to that, this uniform is pukka! O and a massive congratulations to Andy Murray - you've done your country proud.

Love the touch of the union jack sweatbands

Patriotic tendencies are in full swing and so they should be - now that's what I call some serious star spangled bling -

Another American star - Michelle Obama continues to be the ever dazzling first lady -

You know what we don't get enough of - glittery synchronized swimmers. Now that's some industrial strength waterproof makeup. Russia paid homage to the late and great MJ - I'm looking at the women in the mirror...