Monday, 24 July 2017

Recipe Round-Up: Chloe's Kitchen

Time for another recipe round up! This time we are heading back to Chloe's Kitchen by Chloe Coscarella. You can see what else I have cooked from this book here.

Chloe's Favourite Five-Minute Salad Chloe uses a combination of mashed avocado and sushi vinegar as the dressing, which was delicious! The salad itself had mixed greens and tomato in it, I left out the scallions, but you could really add anything into it. Chloe said it served 6, which I guess if you served it in a thimble would be true. I got two side serves out of this (served with some boxed vegan lasagna), but really you could eat the whole thing on your own.
Rating: :D

Chloe's Favourite Five-Minute Salad

Classic Roasted Vegetables: This is a fairly straight forward recipe, using cauliflower, broccoli and carrots as the vegetables. She calls for 1/4 to 1/2 cup olive oil, though I used a lot less - just enough to lightly coat the vegetables. Using that much seems like it would have just been drowning in oil.
Rating: :)

Classic Roasted Vegetables

Teriyaki Wok Vegetables: Chloe provides a simple teriyaki sauce recipe to mix up for these veggies. Chloe suggests using carrot, bok choy, onion, mushrooms, zucchini and snow peas, though you could really use anything you fancied. I didn't have any onion so I left that out, and I also added some dry roasted cashews at the end. I only needed to add about half the amount of sauce for the veggies. This served three over rice.
Rating: :)

Teriyaki Wok Vegetables

LA-Style Chimichurri Tacos: I could only seem to get terrible photos of this yummy dinner. It has three components for the filling - tomato rice (which I adapted to make in the rice cooker), a chimichurri sauce, and a mushroom and black bean filling. The sauce was a bit runny, though I used a mix of pasta water and oil rather than the full 1/2 cup of olive oil (I don't have anything against oil in general, but personally things that have a lot of oil in them tend to make me feel sick). I topped them with some Sour Cream, also from the book. It is a tofu based sour cream, and at first had quite a strong soy taste. However it mellowed quickly.
Rating: Tacos :), Sour Cream :)

LA-Style Chimichurri Tacos

Baked Sprinkle Doughnuts: Confession: deep frying terrifies me, so I have only ever made baked doughnuts. These ones are delicious! There is an option between making a chocolate glaze or an old fashioned glaze, and you can see I have tried both (I coloured the old fashioned one pink), and I have topped them with all sorts of things. The recipe calls for piping the doughnuts into the doughnut pan, and while this does give a nice smooth all over appearance, sometimes I skip the step and just spoon it into the pan. I've made these a few times for bake sales, and they are definitely popular. I generally do a triple dip of the glaze to ensure a nice, thick, smooth covering.
Rating: :D

Baked Sprinkle Doughnuts

Baked Sprinkle Doughnuts

Iced Apple Cake Squares: These are so delicious! It rises quite high in the pan, giving the squares a definite cake vibe rather than a slice. They have a great flavour, and are wonderfully moist (sorry if that word creeps you out). They are topped with a simple icing. As always, I would have preferred it without the icing. Though I was making them for a bake sale and I know how people like their sugar!
Rating: :D

Iced Apple Cake Squares

Sea Salt Toffee Bars: I thought these were just OK (though disclaimer, toffee and caramel aren't my favourites, I was making these for a bake sale). The base is quick to make, but I found needed an extra 10 minutes to go golden in the oven. I had some issues making the caramel following the instructions as written, it didn't almost burnt and then ended up quite thick and hard to spread. Granted I haven't made many caramels, so if I had more experience I would have had a better intuition about how to handle it, but the instructions for a novice may not end up well. As always, be sure to put on lots of salt!
Rating: :|

Sea Salt Toffee Bars

Cute Kitty Photo of the Post

Sahara's 7th Birthday

Last week was five months since Sahara passed away. Time goes too fast.

Friday, 14 July 2017

Melbourne The First 2017 - Part 3

I've been having a bit of a rough time, so it has been a while between posts. But here is the final part of my early July Melbourne trip!

After the epic carb fest of Saturday breakfast, brunch, lunch, and afternoon tea, we had a bit of a late dinner. Our friend Michelle came over and we watched the latest episode of RuPaul's Drag Race, as well as ordering all of the food from Loving Hut Northcote to be delivered. We ordered A LOT. Clockwise from the top left: lemon chicken (though they forgot the sauce!), two lots of fried rice, mushroom and tofu stir-fry, noodles with veggies and mock duck, rainbow salad, rice paper rolls, spring rolls, Mongolian beef stir-fry, Japanese curry. It was a lot! Alas, the Mongolian beef and the Japanese curry ended up being a bit too spicy for me, but the rest was very good. We are so much. Not going to lie, after this day of eating my tummy was less than impressed with me... but it all tasted so good.

All The Food from Loving Hut Northcote

Plate of Food from Loving Hut Northcote

Sunday morning a light breakfast only was in order. I had my Smith & Deli apricot danish, a banana and a mandarin. Then we went to a special advanced viewing of Kedi. If you haven't seen it, I highly recommend it. It is very bittersweet, and very well done. I cried.

Afterwards we went for lunch at The Snug Public House in Brunswick, which had received some good blog reviews. My friends, I will not be going back. First of all, it is tiny and full or drunk people drinking Guinness and being noisy. Secondly, the food was not the greatest. Poor Leigh ordered a Battered Sausage (literally a deep fried Tofurky sausage, no sauces or anything came with it) and the Curry Cheese Chips. These were a disgrace. The chips themselves were OK, but they were covered in a runny sauce that tasted of nothing except perhaps the very faintest wiff of old Keen's curry powder. A lot of salt made it a bit better, but it was Not Good.

Battered Sausage at The Snug

Cheesy Curry Chips at The Snug

My Bangers and Mash was better, and I did enjoy it. The mashed potatoes were actually really good. The sausages were Italian-style Tofurky sausages, which were kind of spicy and not the right flavour choice for this kind of dish. There were two of them, on top of a huge mound of potatoes. It really was too much food, though The Snug seems to pride itself on obscenely huge servings. The gravy was not bad, but was oddly sweet. Thankfully the potatoes were nice and salty so it balanced it a little.

Bangers and Mash at The Snug

That night we ordered in again, following an afternoon of watching cooking shows followed by watching She's All That (Leigh had never seen it) and Not Another Teen Movie. This time we ordered from a Japanese place in Brunswick that I had been keen to try. Unfortunately, their delivery menu is very limited compared to the actual restaurant menu. There are three vegan options, and we both got the vegan gyoza bento. It said it came with rice, salad, pickles and stir-fried vegetables. The vegetables were just bean sprouts with soy sauce, the pickles were some sort of spicy cucumber rather than the tasty Japanese pickles we were hoping for, and the salad included a suspect creamy potato salad (that we avoided just in case, there is no vegan potato salad on their regular menu). So eh, but still tasty and something a bit lighter.

Vegan Gyoza Bento from Misoya Sake Bar

The next morning we went to Wild Timor Coffee for a light breakfast. I started with a Beetroot Ginger Latte (on soy, no honey), which was pretty and pink and mostly tasted like ginger. Leigh got the vegan option on the Breakfast Burrito, which she enjoyed, and I had a delicious Buddha Bowl (roasted sweet potatoes, beets, brussles sprouts, and baby carrots with avocado, beans, turmeric pickled cauliflower, fermented red cabbage and balsamic reduction). It was amazing.

Beetroot and Ginger Latte at Wild Timor

Breakfast Burrito at Wild Timor

Buddha Bowl at Wild Timor

Before I headed to the airport, I stopped by True North and picked up a vegan reuben to take away. It had housemade pastrami, vegan cheese (which was kind of tasteless), mayo and sauerkraut. I ate it at the airport with a Matcha smoothie from Boost Juice for lunch before my flight. I have heard varied reports about this reuben. It was OK, mostly it tasted like caraway and sauerkraut. Not terrible, but there are much more exciting reubens out there.

Vegan Reuben from True North

Vegan Reuben from True North

Of course no trip to Melbourne is complete without bringing home some treats! First up, a little box of yummy Middle Eastern sweets from Al Nada Sweets, an all-vegan sweet shop that was near Leigh!

Al Nada Sweets

And my haul from visiting Smith & Deli and The Cruelty Free Shop. The two big Smith & Deli bags are full of peanut butter pretzels!

Melbourne Haul

I have actually been back to Melbourne since this trip for OzComicCon, so that was a very different sort of experience. I will get around to sharing that trip soon!

Cute Kitty Photo of the Post


Of course the highlight of the trip was getting to meet this awesome little dude. Chia has since made the move to Sweden, and is now living the high life as a Swedish kitty!