Mint slice cupcakes and Australian recess treats

closeMy primary school little lunches will stay with me forever. The company was pleasant enough, but it was always the food that got me excited (what a little piggy!)

There was a period of about two weeks when I was around 10 where we had those tiny little tubs of Nutella that you ate with a tiny paddle. Mum must have been feeling rich when she was doing the shopping, because my two brothers and I NEVER got those in our lunches. Continue reading

Watermelon smoothies and hot hot heat

glassThis past week has been unbearably hot. I love living in Australia, and I love Summer, but I do not love humidity. Today was the first day in a few weeks where we had glorious dry heat. It was amazing.

I made these watermelon smoothies early in December and forgot to post them. Today’s heat reminded me that I needed them in my life again. As much as I’m missing delicious baked goods, I find it hard to justify turning on the oven in this heat! Salads, beverages and ice blocks are topping my “to make” list recently.  Continue reading

Gumbo and rainy day comfort food

bowlThe weather has not been kind to Sydney this week. Earlier in the week it was so uncomfortably humid that leaving the haven of my air-conditioned house made me immediately hot – the air was syrupy with humidity. I made my watermelon and feta salad to cool down on Saturday and had planned to eat the leftovers today.

That was an optimistic plan, because today we had rain; persistent, cold and accompanied by wind.

On the plus side, it was good weather for baking! I baked a lemon and coconut cake similar to these little beauties, and one of my new favourite recipes, gumbo. Continue reading

Mango coconut pops and Summer tastes

singleThis recipe used up the last of the mangoes that I bought on my way down the NSW east coast. It was sad to see the last of the mangoes go, but these ice blocks celebrated the mangoey goodness thoroughly; the handful of ingredients and killer combination of fruits makes for a simple, delectable summer dessert.

Seriously, eating one of these makes you feel like you’re on some divine tropical island, lazing by the beach and being fed deliciously exotic fruits. Mango and coconut transport me to paradise.  Continue reading

Mango lemonade and Summer drinks

ice cubesSummer is definitely here. After a bit of a stormy start, Summer has reared it’s glorious head. I got burnt yesterday at the beach; I applied sunscreen (patchily, as it turns out) and have awkward sunburn patches on my back and legs.

On top of the 30+ degree weather, this sunburn makes me feel like I’m melting! I had a box of quickly ripening mangoes and was in need of something refreshing, speedy and healthy to ease the pain of the sunburn. This mango lemonade ticks all of these boxes and it tastes like a little bit of heaven. I’m in love with it. Continue reading

Champagne pop rocks cake and New Year’s Eve

aboveThis cake is an occasion cake. It’s two-tiered, it’s got champagne in it, and POP ROCKS! All those components make it just a little bit more special than the average cake. This cake really embodies New Year’s Eve traditions to me – it’s fun and unexpected, it’s got a little bit of champagne in it, and the pop rocks are like little fireworks for your taste buds. Continue reading

Mini mango cupcakes and Summer flavours

Mango is Summer to me. It is impossible to imagine one without the other. When I was at school I always knew that the holidays were close when mango prices had fallen enough for us to buy a box of them. To this day, the thrill of buying a box full of mangoes brings me a ridiculous amount of joy.

image2Which is why long road trips up (or down) the NSW coast also bring me great joy – there are countless roadside fruit vendors! If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll have seen my mango haul.

We bought them about four hours into our trip, and the sweet, syrupy smell filled our warm car, becoming increasingly enticing over the remaining two hours. Continue reading

Ginger spice cake and excitement

above sliceThe closer it gets to Christmas, the more excited I get. The more excited I get, the more I crave clichéd Christmas foods – give me pudding and rich spiced cakes, mince pies and roasts. It’s funny that Australians indulge in Christmas foods inspired by their northern hemisphere counterparts. Even though Christmas day can be stinking hot, we still want to have delicious cooking smells filling the house.

Christmas day is supposed to be humid and rainy this year, but that’s not going to stop me. Continue reading

Choc hazelnut biscotti and Christmas food

aboveThe first time I ever tried biscotti was when it was brought home as a gift. One of the great things about having teachers for parents is that holidays always mean gifts. My dad would come home laden with Ferrer Rochers and Favourites gift packs, while my mum was gifted tea cups – my brothers and I took great delight in teasing them, trying to gauge who was the better teacher based on the volume of presents that they received. Continue reading

Choc-mint dipped Christmas biscuits and small acts of kindness

aboveThis year I was invited to sign up for the Foodie Secret Santa. It’s run by Claire of Claire K Creations (she has a round-up here) and the timing could not have been better. If you’re not familiar with the concept, bloggers sign up to partake and are assigned three bloggers to mail goodies to. You receive a different gift from three bloggers in return. I made these little choc-mint dipped Christmas biscuits and sent them off to Melissa from House of Powell, Caroline of Shrinking Single and Clare from Life of Clare.

I received salted caramel fudge sauce from Melissa (we both got assigned one another!), porcini and garlic salt from an unnamed blogger and delicious, crumbly biscotti from another unnamed blogger. (I’ll update you with names when I know who the bloggers are.) I instagrammed the biscotti and caramel sauce here. Continue reading