28 June 2011

devonshire tea

When we were in Melbourne in the Dandenong ranges there were tea houses advertising Devonshire tea everywhere. The weather was perfect for a hot cuppa and a couple of scones so when we stopped in at Sky High a restaurant at the top of the range. Josh managed to demolish two scones in a matter of minutes before proceeding to ask me if I was full so he could have one of mine.
I was going to make pecan pie today but Josh managed to convince me to make scones instead.

Before I continue with the scones I just wanted to share with you my awesome sandwich that I had for lunch today!


Ingredients


4 cups self raising flour
2 tablespoons icing sugar
60g butter
11/2 cups milk
3/4 cup water


Preheat the oven to 220 C. Prepare an oven tray and line with baking paper.
Sift flour and sugar into a large bowl and rub in butter with finger tips. Try and keep your hands cold so that the ingredients stay cool. 
Make a well in the centre of the flour mixture and add the milk and water. (I only used 1/2 cup of water but you may need to add a bit more).


Use a knife to "cut" the milk and water through the flour, mixing to a soft sticky dough. 
This is important as you don't want to over work the dough as this will turn it into rock cakes when finished.


Knead dough on floured surface until smooth, once again being careful not to over work.


Press dough to 2cm thickness. Dip 4.5 cm round cutter in flour and cut as many rounds as you can from the piece of dough.


Place scones side by side just 1cm apart on the tray. 
Knead scraps of dough together and repeat pressing and cutting of dough until all is on the tray. 


Brush the tops with a little extra milk and bake for 15mins or until scones are just browned.


Best served with jam and cream or butter and golden syrup.
I picked up this tasty jam from "Honey World" at Currumbin down the Gold Coast, delicious!

24 June 2011

strawberry upside-down cake

When I was starting my blog I looked at a number of other food blogs to get inspiration. 
The first blog that was shown to me was Joy the Baker. Her blog is ah-mazing and after looking through the hundreds of recipes she has posted it made my blog idea seem childish.
 So what better recipe to do but her Strawberry Upside-down cake with Cardamom

I made this cake a week or so ago for a friend's birthday and it was amazing. 
I shared one piece with her however this was not enough...I had to make another for me to engulf whole. 
It is super tasty with the cardamom flavouring the cake amazingly and when turned out it's topped with the most luscious jam like topping.


It makes sense with strawberries in season to make this delicious cake.




 


Served best with this winter cider....mmmmm....ps i'm not an alcoholic...


Find the recipe on Joy the Baker's Site



21 June 2011

melbourne

I've just returned from a visit to Melbourne. It was a nice long weekend get away and I truly wish it was longer. 
I'm not really a big shopper so I can't say that I came home with loads of new belongings. However I did manage to visit Chapel Street and if I were to recommend anything it would be a visit to the Bazaar Antiques. 
I could have spent hours in there rummaging through old clothing, jewelry, chinaware, furniture and an assortment of other brick-a-brack items from the last 100 years.

So what did I spend my time doing? 
Well I'm much more into food, as you can tell by this blog. I'm not really a city sort of girl so I can't say I spent that much time in Melbourne city itself. 
However the day trips that we took to the Mornington Peninsula and Dandenong Ranges were much more up my alley. So needless to say I will be returning to Melbourne in the future to spend at least a week on the Mornington Peninsula visiting all of its attractions. 

I'm just including a few photographs of my food and adventure highlights from my long weekend.

We went to Ashcombe Maze and Lavender Gardens. I love lavender!


I bought some lavender candies and potpourri. Due to the widespread use of lavender fragrance in cleaning products (such as toilet cleaner) the taste of these candies reminded me of a clean bathroom. 
I also was scared to tears a number of times when my boyfriend and his brother snuck up on me around corners in the maze. Imagine Harry Potter 4 minus the hedges that move around and the vines that eat you whole.


The beautiful autumn colours of the leaves never ceased to amaze me, so beautiful! 
This butter scotch sauce and maple syrup from Red Hill not only taste amazing they have given me recipe ideas, stay tuned!



Mornington Peninsula olives from one of the olive groves. The green ones were the best!


Unfortunately we didn't have enough time to visit either of the dairy farms on the peninsula but we found a shop that sold the local spread. I recommend these two. 
Caprino - sharp like a crumbly Parmesan. Merricks Mist - mould cheese, like a Camembert, very creamy!


Not only was there amazing gourmet food but amazing views as well. 
Imagine rolling hills with grape vines and views of the ocean/bay.


I miss Melbourne already!

11 June 2011

coconut cakes with dark choc glaze

 I love coconut! Cherry ripes are my particular favourite. So naturally when I see a coconut cake recipe I just have to try it out. I must also be going through a dark chocolate phase as most of the sweets I've chosen to cook lately either contain dark chocolate or are topped with a luscious dark chocolate gnash. So today I cooked coconut cakes with dark chocolate glaze. Incredibly easy to make and amazingly easy to eat. Soft and fluffy on the inside, crispy on the outside topped with chocolate...what more could you ask for?


recipe from Donna Hay Fast, Fresh, Simple

Ingredients


125g butter, melted
1 cup desiccated coconut
1 2/3 cups icing sugar, sifted
1/2 cup plain flour, sifted
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
5 egg whites
dark chocolate glaze
150g dark chocolate chips
1/2 cup cream


Preheat oven to 180C. Place butter, coconut, sugar, flour, baking powder and egg whites in a bowl and whisk to combine. 
Divide mixture into well-greased 12 hole muffin tin. 
Bake for 15 mins or until cooked in centre when tested with a skewer.
Stand cakes for two minutes in tin then remove from tin and cool on wire rack. 
For the dark chocolate glaze bring the cream to the boil in a small sauce pan. Remove from the heat and mix in chocolate until smooth. Let the mixture cool slightly so that it thickens to an icing consistency. Spoon over cakes and serve.




No need to say that these things didn't last very long. 

9 June 2011

creamy pumpkin soup

It was a little bit nippy in Brisbane today which is what led me to cooking this perfect winter warmer. To be exact today was the coldest recorded 9th of June for 11 years so no wonder I was shivering in my slippers. 
This pumpkin soup is my go to winter recipe and I must admit I am all class with my powdered chicken stock and master foods spices, but lets be honest with ourselves who actually has the time to make their own homemade chicken stock...that’s what I thought.
My mum’s vintage pots and pans have starred for the first time with this recipe as well as my awesome mega mugs that I got for $5 at Big W. They hold 500mls each...perfect size for a cup of tea if you ask me. However I found them the perfect size to serve this tasty soup in too. 


Ingredients

50g butter
1 large onion
3 large potatoes
1kg pumpkin
2 tsp paprika
2 tsp turmeric
2 tsp Cajun spices
1 litre chicken stock
½ cup pouring cream
Salt & pepper to taste

First finely dice onion. Peel potatoes and pumpkin and chop into smallish pieces.
Next, fry off onions in pan with butter until translucent. Add pumpkin, potato, chicken stock and spices.
Bring the pot to the boil then turn down to half heat and simmer for a minimum of 30mins. Ideally the longer you can let this soup sit and simmer the richer the flavours will be.
Once the pumpkin and potato are soft remove from heat and blend until smooth with stick mixer/blender. Add cream and season to taste. I find I usually don’t have to add any salt or pepper but Josh likes his extra salty.
Serve in a big bowl with crusty bread. I would usually have this with Turkish bread but it was too cold for me to venture out to get some. x

to blog or not to blog

So I decided to start a food blog which I thought would be a pretty simple process right…cook food take photographs of it and post it online. However I didn’t anticipate how difficult it would be to name my blog. 
After hours (well really 30mins) of brainstorming blog names I came up with a few that suited my purpose. However much to my disappointment, these names were already taken. 
Anything from “food for thought” to “salty sour bittersweet” to “when hunger strikes” was considered. 
However when my boyfriend Josh came out with “fork my food” there was no way I could go past this, so it stuck. 
So please stay tuned for some food experiences hosted by me and I encourage you to try the recipes – as they will be super tasty…bon appetite!
ps. please don't judge my photography skills... I appreciate that my $150 camera will sometimes not do any justice for my scrumptious creations!