31.3.11

A Spoilt Letterbox



It was our overcrowded fridge door that made me realise how many lovely cards we have received from friends in the post lately. So lovely, I felt they deserved their own blog post. A favourite from the collection is the folk letterpress design 'You Are So Sweet' card from Dutch Door Press (I think I will find a little frame for it). Also, the clever girls at Poppies for Grace have recently produced the coloured string + tie envelopes - they are just too cute to use if you ask me. Speaking of good stationery, check out more brilliance over at Zed + Bee – the girls have loaded up images of their latest invitation designs.

29.3.11

Pears for Lunch





For my regular readers, you will know by now that my husband does most of the cooking in our house - where as I tend to cheer on the sidelines and take photos. We enjoyed one of his feasts with friends on Sunday (complete with homemade bread). I saw it as a good excuse to decorate our outdoor table and use the Alphabet Garlands that have been sitting in the cupboard waiting for a reason to make an appearance. A fellow foodie was one of our guests, and the last photo is of the gift she arrived with - a care package of her Bircher Muesli complete with yoghurt and honey. So sweet, and such a lovely idea.

27.3.11

Roasted Peaches with Sugared Walnuts

Something about the words 'Sugared Walnuts' had me hooked as soon as I spotted this recipe. I came across it on Oprah's website (not sure how I ended up there), but it's super easy and quick (and delicious). I figured – if it's good enough for Queen Oprah....
You will need:
1 cup walnuts
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
5 tablespoons brown sugar
6 peaches, halved
1/2 cup thick cream
Method:
Preheat oven to 180°C. Line a tray with baking paper, set aside. In a bowl, toss walnuts with 2 tablespoons butter and 2 tablespoons brown sugar. Spread walnuts on to tray. Roast 5 minutes; turn and continue roasting until browned and crispy, about 10 minutes. Remove from tray. Place peaches on same tray; brush tops with remaining 2 tablespoons butter and sprinkle with brown sugar. Roast until sugar is bubbling, about 25 minutes. Place 2 peach halves in a bowl, top with cream and the toasted sugared walnuts. Serves 6.

24.3.11

A week of shopping






I've had a great week sourcing props and furniture for a television commercial we are shooting on Saturday and Monday. A 'buying' day can't begin without a handbag containing the following: Camera, Petty Cash, Tape Measure and Notebook. Simple, really...but without them, I might as well stay at home. I file away the receipts from my purchases like they are liquid gold, misplace those receipts, and I'd have an expensive little day on my hands. The brief for this particular job is a lovely one - decadent kitchens and dining tables with delicious feasts. First stops were shops like the The Bay Tree and Parterre, and how gorgeous are the Mud Australia teacups? I feel a bit like a walking and talking gift guide sometimes, there are so many good little presents out there (for you and me).

21.3.11

A Busy Weekend








The crazy weather in Sydney over the weekend didn't stop us from putting the party shoes on. On Saturday, we celebrated with red balloons and polka dots at my cousin's engagement party. A polaroid camera was doing the rounds on the day, and I love the one that captured my gorgeous Nan with six of her seven grandaughters. On Sunday, it was off to a baby shower for a special friend. The smiling baby (also a guest) is Georgia, the little girl I mentioned in this post. As you can see, she is now the picture of beautiful health. We finished Sunday off with dinner that included amazing chocolate souffl├ęs made by a clever cook and friend. Life is good...

17.3.11

My New Favourite Cake




I documented my last baking adventure here. If you remember, it didn't go too well. I'm determined to be a better baker, so I decided to attempt an orange cake (also to show off my new $4.00 cake stand, purchased from Summer Hill Vinnie's). I'm yet to master neat icing, but - hooly dooly, did it taste good. Here is the super simple recipe:
You will need:
2 small oranges
125g butter, melted
1 cup milk
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1.5 cups self-raising flour, sifted
1 cup caster sugar
1/2 cup almond meal
Orange zest, to decorate
Method:
Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease a 24cm (base) fluted ring pan. Place oranges in a saucepan. Cover with cold water. Bring to boil. Drain. Set aside until cool enough to handle. Roughly chop oranges. Remove and discard seeds. Process orange until smooth. Transfer to a bowl. Stir in butter, milk, eggs, flour, sugar and almond meal until combined. Pour mixture into prepared pan. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until a skewer inserted in to cake comes out clean. Stand cake in pan for 10 minutes. Turn onto a wire rack over a tray. Cool. To make the orange icing, combine 1.5 cups icing sugar, 10g butter and 2 tablespoons of orange juice. Spread on cake and top with orange zest. Enjoy.




15.3.11

Victor Churchill Window




I completed a fun little project yesterday. The dazzling butchery Victor Churchill asked me to create a window display to promote their kid's cooking classes that are held on weekends. I decided to get in to the head space of a child and tried to imagine how they would decorate a window. As you can see, I had fun creating a mini kitchen with cardboard boxes, the 'clever cow' logo, vegetables and a bit of finger painting. I hope the kids approve.

13.3.11

Tea Parlour



I had such a great week guest blogging on The Design Files, but it's good to be back (hello to all my new subscribers, it's super to be writing to you). I spent Saturday afternoon at Tea Parlour in Redfern. The bubbly was flowing and the food delicious, making it a perfect venue to kick off a very special bride to be hens day. The owner Amelia has decorated the matchbox size space with her collections beautifully. It's unpretentious high tea with good music, and a tarot card reader often sets herself up in the corner. So lovely.

5.3.11

The Blog World II

Exciting news. The mac-daddy of all blogs, The Design Files has me on board from Monday for a week as a guest blogger. As you can imagine, I am just a little bit thrilled. I will be missing in action from here this week, but please do drop in and see my daily posts here instead. I will be writing about my treasure hunting in a town called Mudgee, and I have a great giveaway on Tuesday, so I hope to see you over there.

3.3.11

MoMA Coasters


Running out of coasters is never going to be a problem at our house. As you can see, I am gaining a bit of a collection. It was love at first sight recently when I spotted the MoMA coasters at the MCA. The lovely timber and bright felt make them almost too perfect to use. I'll stick to using the older ones for now - all picked up from Salvo's over the past few years.

1.3.11

A Good Sunday



I just love a productive, busy Sunday. We made the most of my favourite day of the week last weekend and headed in to the city to visit Sydney Cellar Door in Hyde Park. My husband was in heaven with the wine tastings on offer, and I was in heaven with the pork belly, leek and aioli bread roll from the Bodega Tapas Bar stall - it was seriously one of the tastiest lunches of my life (maitre d' Sarah served us too, and I think her rockabilly style is so gorgeous). The day was capped off with a Manly Fast Ferry ride home. Just like a mini holiday.

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