Unblogged

The Unblogged Files: June 2014

7/03/2014 11:10:00 PM

Another month, another Unblogged Files. And I'm pleased to say that June was nice and quiet - hooray! There were a few events and a couple of dinners out, but everything was nicely spread out and I got a lot of down time too - not like the epic eating endeavours of April and May!

Let's start with a look at some breakfasts!

Top row: Egg-fried Quinoa; Sliced avocado on rye toast
Middle row: Sliced avocado & boiled egg on rye toast; Coconut pikelets w/ stewed apples
Bottom row: Raisin Toast; Triple-grain porridge (oats, quinoa, rye) w/ LSA, blueberries & honeyed ricotta 

We go to my mum and dad's place once a week for a home cooked meal - here are some of the treats they cooked up for us this month!

Har Mee: spicy prawn and pork soup noodles with bean shoots, water spinach and hard boiled egg

Hong Bak: A Penang Nyonya dish of braised belly pork (and sometimes potatoes!) in bean sauce

Got fruit?

Ban Chang Kueh: Crispy peanut pancakes (same thing as the Apam Balik I told you about in my Langkawi 2014 post)

I attended a few events this month (disclosure: these were all complimentary invites).

There was a lovely dinner at The Atlantic in Crown (blogpost to come!) It's one of my favourite restaurants, and I've visited three times before this event (see previous post on The Atlantic here), so I was thrilled to be invited and to meet Chef Donovan Cooke!

Chef Donovan Cooke at The Atlantic

I also attended an early morning breakfast at Cecconi's for the launch of Olimpia Bortolotto's new cookbook: La Tavola Della Famiglia. There were lots of delicious breakfast canapes, including these gorgeous freshly-baked mini muffins with quince, cinnamon and mascarpone. Maria (Olimpia's daughter) kindly gifted me a copy of the book, so I hope to cook from it soon!

Quince, cinnamon and mascarpone mini muffins

One of the more unusual events I've ever attended was the Chobani Workshop, hosted by Chobani yogurt at the Sofitel Hotel. It was kinda like market research meets a cooking class, with lots of food and wine. We enjoyed some drinks and canapes, were interviewed about our opinions on Chobani, and cooked our own dinner under the instruction of Lee Atkinson, Executive Chef of the Culinary Academy Sofitel Melbourne. Fun! (Although I could have just said, "Want my opinion on Chobani? Positive. Refer to my blog and Instagram!" Hehe).

Chobani 2%, hardboiled quail eggs, asparagus, Parmesan crisps

Finally, my cousin and I went to the launch of the Old El Paso Stand 'n Stuff Tortilla Family Bar, which featured taco creations from chef Paul Wilson (of Acland Street Cantina), and a live Mariachi band. PS is it wrong that I like Old El Paso more now that they're using Danny Trejo in their ads? I frikkin' love that guy!

Old El Paso Stand 'n' Stuff Pop Up Bar

There also quite a few home-cooked dinners: it seems comfort food was high on the agenda!

Top left: Shepherd's pie
Top right: Mushroom risotto, sauteed peas
Bottom left: Egg & chips, cup of tea
Bottom right: Cheese and bacon burger with roast potato squares (I had salad with mine too!)

Top left: Double potato and halloumi bake (Nigella Bites)
Top right: Chicken wings with chilli, lemon and mint (Nigel Slater, Real Food)
Bottom left: Bacon spaghetti (Nigella, How To Eat)
Bottom centre: Broccolini with lemon and Parmesan (Nigellissima)
Bottom right: Bolognese made with defrosted burger patties (don't judge)

I made moussaka from Poh Ling Yeow's new cookbook, Same Same But Different, which is actually George Calombaris' recipe. It's really, really good. Best new recipe I've made in a long while!

Moussaka

When shopping in the city one day, I was beyond thrilled to discover that the Peter Bouchier counter in the David Jones Food Hall stocks Fleischkäse, (AKA Leberkäse, AKA German meatloaf of deliciousness). I'm really glad to have found it at a shop that's open 9-5 on weekends and that I can get to during the week on my lunch break. Normally, when I want my German smallgood fix, I go to Andrew's Choice in Yarraville or the Wursthütte in Malvern, but they're not open Saturday afternoons or Sundays at all - so I have to make a special Saturday morning trip and it messes up my weekend schedule. (Weekend schedule = sleep in, then gym, hehe). Now I can have Fleischkäse on weeknights - hooray! (Peter Bouchier also stock other amazing smallgoods - I bought some dry-cured streaky bacon too, ZOMG!)

Fleischkäse,  Brötchen, Spiegelei

I seemed to go for a cheap Asian meal often throughout the month (or, throughout my life). Here are the highlights:

Spicy beef on broad noodles at Noodle Kingdom (264 Swanston St, Melbourne VIC 3000)

Beef Pho at Pho Nom, Emporium

Pan-fried mini Shanghai pork buns at China Family Dumpling (176/10 Commercial Rd, Prahran VIC 3181)

This also happened. KFC Double Down!! I'm glad they only offer it for a few days every year, otherwise I'd be obese!

KFC DOUBLE DOWN

I made a few cafe visits - some good, some less so. I'm only gonna talk about the good ones!

I liked the food at Operator 25 (25 Wills Street, Melbourne VIC 3000). I loved that they had Brazillian feijoada (bean stew with ham hock), rice and toasted manioc flour as a special! The potato roesti with grandmother ham, poached egg and chive hollandaise were also impressive.

Clockwise from top left: Feijoada with rice and toasted manioc flour; cappuccino; house Benedict with potato roesti, grandmother ham, poach eggs and chive hollandaise; chips with aioli

We caught up with the lovely Food Trail Family one morning at Olio e Pane (328 Auburn Road, Hawthorn Vic 3122). Here's my proscuitto panino. It was really, really good!

Proscuitto panino

Moving on from the cafes now and onto a restaurant - one night, my parents took us to Cantina Centrale (11 Hamilton Street, Mont Albert Vic 3127). The pastas were just okay, but the pizzas were incredible! Check out this special of the day - gorgonzola, fior di latte, nduja (spicy sausage) & tomato. Argggggh look at that base! So amazing!

Pizza at Cantina Centrale

I did a little baking this month too - yay! One afternoon I baked this gorgeous French chocolate cake that I'd seen on Smitten Kitchen. It's really delicious, I highly recommend it.

Valerie's French Chocolate Cake

...and an old favourite, David Lebovitz' salted butter chocolate chip cookies.

David Lebovitz' 

The reason I made these cookies (but does anyone really need a reason for cookies?), was because a coworker of mine had gifted me some cultured and salted butter from The Butter Factory in his home town of Myrtleford. How nice of him! It's great on toast too.

Myrtleford Salted Cultured Butter

Finally, I took my dad to the Cloudy Bay "Duck and Pinot" dinner at David's Restaurant (4 Cecil Place Prahran, VIC, 3181) - six courses with matching Cloudy Bay wines for $85! Blogpost to come. (Disclosure: this was NOT a complimentary invite; I just know my dad loves Cloudy Bay Wine, so as soon as I read about the event it on the restaurant's Instagram I quickly booked us a spot!) It was a really fun night.

Cloudy Bay dinner at David's

And that was June! Plans for July: a little weekend away in the Dandenongs, my mum's birthday, and hopefully a little more baking!

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5 comments

  1. Recently made a moussaka too, love my eggplants so that dish was a bit of a winner (although I went "typical azn" and substituted all spice with 5 spice... bahahaha!!)

    And that KFC double down burger looks crazy but so worth a try... grrr missed out!

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  2. You can't go wrong with porridge for a winter breakfast :)

    And the Operator25 food looks delicious!

    So happy to have found your blog through the Chobani night x

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  3. I've got a feeling you've got a secret compartment somewhere, you can't be eating all that much and be so slim! So much food and happiness right here :)

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  4. You really know how to taunt a girl! Your breakfasts always look amazing and I'm totally not staring at the KFC double down!

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  5. Wait, since when has Danny Trejo become the poster boy for Old El Paso?! He's such an awesome actor.

    Love the round-up of photos, your breakfasts are definitely more diverse and exciting than mine!

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