Ladies Trip!

Ha! You thought I’d forgotten my blog again….BUT I HAVEN’T! I have instead spent this past weekend in Sydney on a girls trip with my Mum and twin sister. Which made THE BEST CHANGE from being there for work.

We flew down on Friday afternoon, and after checking into a hotel that was much fancier than we are, took my Mum straight down to The Rocks, so she could see the Harbour Bridge and the Opera House (this being her first ever visit to Sydney). We had the most amazing burgers (truly, dirty smashing experience), shared a bottle of wine before wending our way back to our room.

Saturday morning, after a sneaky coffee in bed (one of the best things about travelling with my Mum, she’s up first and gets the kettle on!) we headed into Darling Harbour for breakfast and a walk around the National Maritime Museum (they had a Shackleton exhibit on!) and my sister getting seasick on the Endeavour replica (it was at dock…..).

Then we headed across to the QVB, because its a beautiful building and I wanted Mum to see it. For the first time ever I found the Zumbo stall….and as you can see it was just amazing.

We bought a cronut, decorated fondant, and some macarons to share. The macarons we ate on the go, but the rest we saved for breakfast Sunday morning.

After a bout of Pitt St shopping we then had our absolute favourite food experience. A late lunch at jones the grocer. We ordered a charcuterie platter, a bowl of hot chips (because we’re human) and a bottle of fizz, which went immediately to our heads.

The pork and pistachio terrine, the mixed meats, the most delicious olives….it was tempting to sit there all evening, with a second platter and another bottle….but we headed out and later bought woodfire pizzas and cheap fizz to have in the hotel room in our pjs.

Sunday (after the cronut of awesome and half the decorated fondant, too rich to eat it all) we headed on the ferry out to Manly, which was just beautiful.

We had fish and chips by the water then headed back across the harbour, and took a bus to an outlet mall. Once we’d had our fill of shopping we headed back into town with thoughts of going back to jones the grocer, but as it was closed we had to settle for Jamie’s Italian. The Plank we had was great, but just not on the same level. (If you have to go and buy more cheap fizz and a packet of crisps after a meal there’s something wrong).

All in all it was a brilliant weekend away, and I’m now researching where to find the amazing olives and antipasti we had at jones the grocer….as well as looking for a pork and pistachio terrine recipe….












Gird Your Loins. Christmas is Coming.

The last few weeks have literally been about preparing for Christmas, which is just as well given we're hosting. Hubby has set forth turning our shed into a Christmas wonderland. Hello 4,000 assorted fairy lights.

Aside from Ham Wars, I've been much more focused on 1) presents and 2) food preparation (not necessarily in that order). In an attempt to be prepared I've been either trial running recipes or making ahead and freezing.

I have bacon wrapped chipolatas, and two different kinds of stuffing in my freezer. Today I added cheese puffs which were a bit of a disappointment. I've pre-diced cheese to skewer with cocktail onions on the day, and today I took the gingerbread dough out of the freezer ready to bake on Monday when its defrosted.

I made my first batch of gingerbread biscotti, which is almost gone, but definetly earned itself a spot on the rebake list, and be still my beating heart, orange and cranberry breakfast scrolls. I adored these, especially loving the second rise in the fridge over night, ready to bake on the day part. Hubby sadly wasn't taken with the flavour, so a chocolate version will also be made on Christmas Eve.

I have my final grocery list with the perishables, which I'll pick up Monday with my sister-in-law, and then I just need a final run sheet (which will be taped to the kitchen cupboards and ticked off meticulously) and this show is on.

I'm trying not to stress, despite adding five extras to the guest list today (3 of which are vivacious children). But what can you do. I'm just about as organised as I can be, although, regretting working Christmas Eve.

This is still my favourite recipe so far. I only hope you enjoy as much as I do.

Orange and Cranberry Breakfast Scrolls – from SmittenKitchen

I followed Debs recipe to the letter, thankfully she includes weights for those of us not using US cups.

Mine didn't really rise in the fridge, but 20mins in a just warm oven took care of that. I then left them in there while the oven got to the right temperature. Keep an eye on them, in case they get to brown and you need to add an aluminum hat to keep them from burning!