Obsessions

Current Obsessions, 5

7/18/2018 08:43:00 AM

Blue Bean Love Restaurant, Daylesford

Time for another Obsessions Post. It has been a crazy few weeks; general busyness, lots of family, lots of work, lots of running around!

Here are my latest obsessions. Let's start with something serious and then move onto the fun stuff.

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I, like the rest of the world, have been absolutely gripped by the Thai Cave Rescue. After the boys were initially found and the rescue was unfolding, I was constantly refreshing news sources on my phone to follow the progress of the mission, hoping for good news. I couldn't imagine the fear those boys and the coach would have felt, and was amazed by how Coach Ekk managed to keep himself and the boys calm and safe, and in awe of the huge collaborative effort of people from all around the world to save them. What an incredible relief that they all came out safely! I won't share any photos of the boys because, as much as I want to acknowledge the amazing rescue (and of course the sacrifice of Thai Navy SEAL Saman Gunan who died on the mission), I also don't want to contribute (even in my tiny way) to any kind of media storm around the boys, especially now that they're safe and recovering. However, I did want to share this cute cartoon by Sisidea, a really sweet way of acknowledging the different parties contributing to the mission.

Cartoon of all the participants in the rescue mission by Sisidea

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Ok, onto some lighter topics! I love Mary Berry! Her programs are so engaging, and her recipes always look so delicious and achievable. I love her practical approach to cooking, and all the tips and tricks she shares. I have a few of her books (all bought for me by Sandra, yay), and her recipes work really well. In particular, I'm a big fan of Mary Berry's Baking Bible - I got it a few weeks ago and sat down and read it cover to cover! So far I've made the lemon soufflé pudding and the walnut coffee cake, and have my eye on many more. (Also fabulous is the loaf cake with apple and cinnamon from Mary Berry Cooks). I only started watching Great British Bake Off this year, after getting into Mary's cooking programs, and feel like I have a lot of catching up to do.

Some of Mary Berry's books, Coffee Walnut Cake

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The Beach Boys. Random I know, and I'm also about fifty years late to this bandwagon! Foxtel Arts was screening the Brian Wilson and Friends concert the other night, and I had it on in the background, and I got totally sucked into the concert. Of course, I'd heard The Beach Boys's music before, but I'd never really listened to it. I'd always thought they were just mindless pop songs about surfing and cars and girls (which isn't wholly inaccurate), but I'd never taken the time to appreciate the lush harmonies, the ridiculously catchy melodies, their wholly unique and immediately identifiable sound, Brian Wilson's pioneering recording techniques. I've now got Pet Sounds and The Beach Boys Greatest Hits (2012), and have been listening to them on repeat. What else of theirs should I be listening to?

Source

Here's a clip of Good Vibrations from the Brian Wilson and Friends concert. I'm amazed that Brian Wilson is still going after everything he's been through (look up his story, it's fascinating), and the band (including original Beach Boys' member Al Jardine) are amazing.

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My favourite gelato of all time (and I've tried a lot), is the pistachio gelato from Piccolina Gelateria. I used to avoid pistachio gelato, afraid I'd get a big hit of awful medicinal-tasting artificial pistachio essence, but Piccolina changed all that. The pistachio gelato is made in-house (like all of their gelati), and they undertake the laborious process of roasting and blending the pistachios from scratch, before blending it into the gelato base. It tastes fantastic - not overly sweet, so roasty and just of pure pistachio! All their flavours are great, but the pistachio is the clear winner for me.

Pistachio Gelato from Piccolina

I was actually invited along to a behind-the-scenes gelato making experience at Piccolina earlier this week (my response was an instant HECK YES), to launch their new vegan specials, one of which was pistachio! So I got to see the pistachio making process first-hand. (Check out that roasted pistachio butter, omgggg). The vegan version is based on almond milk rather than dairy milk, and the result had that signature pure pistachio taste that you'd expect from Piccolina, whilst being impressively creamy. I did a side-by-side taste of the vegan and the regular pistachio gelati, and the regular version just had the edge for me, as it was less sweet and the roasty pistachio flavour was more pronounced - but I'm just splitting hairs here - both are still top notch.

Behind the scenes of the vegan pistachio gelato making process

Any vegans or dairy-intolerant folks out there, the vegan specials are on for this week only, and the flavours are pistachio; hazelnut; almond with almond croccante; and peanut butter with dark chocolate stracciatella.

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Last obsession for today! Agathé Patisserie! They make my favourite croissants in Melbourne, but all the baked goods that we've tried from them have been really impressive. The plain lemon loaf cake in particular is a stand-out. The below photo is from a croissant-frenzy of a brunch that we had with our friends Surya and Jean so that we could share and try lots of flavours. Whenever we go shopping at South Melbourne market we end up buying lunch in its entirety from Agathé (whoops), and now that I've found their petite shop in Royal Arcade in the CBD, I've started eating them as an occasional weekday breakfast treat. (Usually just one at a time though). My faves so far: lemon loaf cake, plain croissant, almond and chocolate croissant, pain au chocolat, custard and salted caramel cruffin. But really, I don't think you can go wrong! So buttery, so flaky, so incredibly delicious!

Agathé Pâtisserie

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That's it for today! Coming up on the blog: more pancakes, a fancy degustation dinner, more travel, restaurants, and some sweet treats!

You can see all my Current Obsessions posts here.

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1 comments

  1. You Agathe posts always make me so hungry! And yes I find a lot of pistachio gelato made using almond and pistachio paste so it doesn't taste great. But real pistachio gelato is amazing.

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