Sunday, April 28, 2013

Baked ricotta

I went to silo for lunch the other day, and had their fig and ricotta salad. The baked ricotta was light and added a wonderful contrast to the salad, so I decided to try and bake ricotta at home for a starter. Turns out it is the easiest thing and there are probably a heap of recipes out there but this combination seemed to make sense and ended up tasting wonderful.

Take about a cup of ricotta and mix in a clove crushed garlic, some lemon zest, and thyme (if you have it handy) Season with salt and place into an oiled ramekin.

Drizzle a bit of olive oil on the top and bake in an over (around 180) for around 15 - 20 minutes. 

The same stupid moon

And with that, I run out into the cold night air and look up to the sky and stand under the big full moon. It is comforting at first knowing that wherever time has brought us, and no matter what - we are always under the same moon. And then I realise the foolishness of the moment with these thoughts and tears come to my eyes. And then I think it's stupid to share such sad silly thoughts. But now it is too late. It's typed and done.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Ox Eatery

I went to dinner at Ox Eatery tonight. Ox Eatery is part of the new renaissance of carnivore restaurants in Canberra. Big fuck off rotisserie, centre stage, with slabs of pork, beef, lamb and chicken happily spinning around. It's the second time there - and to be honest, it aint bad at all. Tonight the beef was probably the best beef I've eaten in a long time. Thin slivers of pink, encased in char grilled goodness. Well rested and extraordinarily tender. It reminded me of the time I ate a Salisbury steak in Vegas. Not really, and to be honest that is an entirely other blog post.

Back to Ox.

So while the food is great, the fit out is delightful too with some very comfortable leather booths which provide an entertaining view of the kitchen. Which is great if you are a woman who has a PhD in celebrity cooks, and by default is now an expert in observing the goings on of a kitchen. Queue story about my mother.

My mum has this cute habit of talking about all the celebrity chefs with cooking shows, like they are her super bff. Jamie this, Bill that...Kylie, Jill, Stephanie, Maggie - the whole gang! And with this intimate relationship brings a firm knowledge about food. An expertise you might say. And watching in real life....oh my. So many questions about who is doing what. Not in a bad way...just in a mildly TV show commentary way. If only there was a camera panning in for the close ups.

Which did lead me to think - before all the TV shows about chefs, cooking and produce and the like....when chefs were just people who, I don't know... were skilled in a trade, did anyone care about anything they did? Probably not. But now everyone is an expert thanks to reality TV. Everyone has an opinion, everyone is a critic and everyone thinks chefs are demigods or rock stars (or both). 

I've never worked in a restaurant, but I'd say it would be anything but glamourous. Maybe I'm wrong, but either way - the hospitality world should ride this thing for as long as it lasts. I'm sure chefs, cooks and kitchen hands are all milking this thing for what its worth. Will it last? Probably. And if it does, good luck to them.

PS, next time I go to Ox, whilst observing the chef folk, I plan to eat a whole pig with 17 of my closest friends. Who's in?

Monday, April 22, 2013


Happy birthday E to the K.


Ages ago I wrote a post about Gunning. Turned out to be one of my more popular posts, and I think that is because I mentioned Max Cullen. Who knew Max was THAT popular! Anyway, Gunning is great and that is a Max Cullen screen print at the top, so conveniently I get to mention him again. 

Saturday, April 20, 2013


My mum made this a lot throughout my childhood and still makes it from time to time. I have memories of sitting on our balcony, overlooking the suburbs and eating gitterkuchen for afternoon tea. A very Austrian thing to do in a Northern Beaches setting of bright blue sky, hot summer sun and rainbow lorikeets swooping between the houses.  

I thought this would be a great thing to make as part of my contribution to Harmony Day, which was held in March....which feels like a million lifetimes ago! 

Even though I'm late posting this - I always forget the recipe so wanted to jot it down so that the next time I make it, I'm not making it up. Please note though, the following is actually made up.

About 600 grams flour and a teaspoon of baking powder
300 grams icing sugar
300 grams butter
Some vanilla if you have it
About 3 tablespoons milk
Any type of jam (though plum and apricot works best)

Mix all the ingredients (except the jam) to form a dough. Add milk if it is all too dry.
Roll dough and place on baking tray (keep some dough for lattice). The dough should be just over a centimetre thick.

Spread jam onto dough and then roll out remainder of dough to make lattice.

Criss cross it so it looks pretty and then if you can be bothered glaze with an egg wash (I didn't). Put in an oven at just under 180 degrees and bake for about 40 minutes (check at the half hour point if your oven cooks like a demon).

Friday, April 19, 2013

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Holiday list for Japanland

I wrote a friend a quick list of things to do in Japanland. He ticked off all but a few, which is a pretty good effort given it is such a sketchy list. Now he's back, converts nicely to a travel diary.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

My Friend Trixie

My friend Trixie went to Sri Lanka

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Vale Jim Shepherd

Dear Karin,
Thank you for allowing me to use your popular blog to write about the passing of Jim Shepherd, who was the director of Frew Publications.
Frew has been publishing the Phantom comic in Australia since 1948 and I sincerely believe that I would not possess the enthusiasm for comics I do today were it not for the newsagent next to my Dad's restaurant that used to give me Frew Phantoms.
One of the most endearing qualities of these particular comics is that Jim himself would write an introduction to each issue. I do not know how familiar your readers are with the story of the Phantom, but he is the 21st in a long line of crime fighters. Often, issues will focus on the heroic deeds of past phantoms, and in these issues Jim would usually provide a little more detail on the historical setting, which was a nice touch. Other times, he would simply speculate on the direction of the story, and what lay ahead for the 'Ghost Who Walks'.
Most of all, his introductions betrayed the fact that he was a genuine fan of the Phantom. In an era where comics are an increasingly cynical medium driven by merchandising and licensing, it was nice to know that there was still someone who had a genuine regard for the character, and respect for the readers.
I understand that Jim died today after collapsing whilst out dining. I am saddened by this loss, but happy for the humble legacy he leaves.
Thank you again for publishing this. I would also like to encourage your readers to seek out the Phantom at their local newsagent or comic book shop. Its a great book and suitable for men and women of all ages.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Celebrating the opening of Zara Canberra

New winter fashion modelled by Ms E to the K.

Rust and Bone

A handsome brute, a big fish, complicated relationships and 110 minutes of heartbreak (with glimpses of hope). What appears to be an unbelievable story, turns out to be quite a wonderful and engaging film.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Tschua Tschussi

Beautiful package from Leipzig. Check out

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Bye Bye Olive

Heard news today that my oldest friend passed away on Sunday. Not old as in the one I've known the oldest - but old in an old way. This isn't so sad because I think 93 is pretty good, don't you think? She got to spend her whole life in her little house and for that I'm glad. 

I'll always remember her pretty pink nail polish and her gentle gruff way. Our trips out for coffee which would make her smile. And before we became friends, the random sneaky bits of chop tossed over the back fence for the barky Barney dog. 

I'm told she wants to be buried in her pyjama's which I think is probably pretty sensible. You want to be comfortable for these occasions. And also her lilac dressing gown. And slippers. Bless.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

The Loneliest Planet

I'm going to say something risqué here....the more I thought about this film the more I liked it. Mind you, this film had a touch of the 'good listener'. Did I ever tell you about the time I saw the Good Listener with my pony friend? For the life of me I could never remember the movies name (which was actually the Lives of Others, an excellent film). I called it the 'Good Listener' for so long but in fairness it is a film about listening (and they do a good job in listening = Good Listener). Downside of this literal approach is both me and my pony friend have to work backwards from the 'Good Listener' to remember what the film is actually called. True story.

But I do go on and that's because I can't ever remember the name of this film, the Loneliest Planet.  'Into the Wild', then 'the Wildest Planet' then to 'the movie with that good looking Gabriel guy' seem like good working titles. And the movie itself? Well it is beautiful, but slow...a subtle film. It is kind of about nothing and everything. My movie companions thoughts:
'was shithouse' 
'picturesque but too long'

I don't know if I'd recommend this film. Go if you have patience and an eye for beautiful scenery. Maybe.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Yellow polka dot birthday

We celebrated my mums birthday at the yellow house in yellow polka dot style. While  these photos make it look like I'm a woman obsessed with shabby chic and yellow....I'm not. So don't get any ideas. Also bunting is not craft. 

But I digress. Look at the cake! A wonderful cranberry and citrus coconut cake courtesy of It look nothing like their version, but is pretty enough for a birthday afternoon tea and the recipe is easy. Make it.