Monday, April 26, 2010

Wonderful Waiheke

I have been very quiet on the recipe front lately - not for lack of trying new things and keeping things fresh, just lack of time!

Things have been hectic with so much going on in the world of Kate - I like to call it my "in between" time . . . in between jobs, in between boyfriends, in between housemates and in between best friends! (The in between boyfriends reference relates to a book that Bree gave me a few years ago - it's a much nicer way of phrasing 'single'!)

So I thought it was time to report on my NZ adventures and share a gorgeous recipe I picked up over there. Flea and Gak (Fern's sister and brother-in-law) spoilt me rotten during my stay on Waiheke Island, just out of Auckland - we ate like kings (and drank like jokers!). I just wish I hadn't been so tipsy with my camera to forget to take photos of all the gorgeous food we gorged on. I did take some pics, but they don't do it justice - call it champagne goggles!

Flea introduced me - a non mango lover - to a gorgeous avocado and mango salad that I shared with the JKL at our Easter dinner. Divine! Pic is the top one, followed by some great local cheese, gorgeous green curry mussels, beautiful roast veggie salad and a great pear, rocket and parmesan salad with some yummy tamari roasted sunflower seeds. Yum!

Mango & Avocado Salad (I'm going to call it Waiheke Island Salad)
1 iceburg lettuce, roughly chopped
3 large ripe mangoes, thinly sliced (canned works okay if you're out of season)
3 large ripe avocadoes, roughly chopped
1 medium red onion, finely diced
2 Tbspns each of mint and coriander
3 limes, juice and finely grated zest
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 Tbspn sweet chilli sauce
1 Tbspon sesame oil
1 1/2 tspn fish sauce
Combine all chopped salad ingredients. Mix dressing in a bowl and pour over dry salad. Ah-mazing.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Let's do the happy hen dance!

When it comes to hen's days, I'm in my element. Especially when you combine some pretty cool theming, a stunning venue and ah-mazing food.

Which is exactly what we were treated to when we celbrated Michelle's hen's day a couple of weeks ago at Hentley Farm in the Barossa. OMG. What a beautiful setting. My photos simply don't do it justice, but hopefully you get the drift.

We stuck with black, white and yellow for our colours, with stripes, polka dots and florals featuring heavily in our decorating. The fun started on the bus ride up and then guests were treated to pre-lunch drinks and nibbles on the verandah of the recently renovated farm house at Hentley, before finding their seats at the long table under umbrellas.

Lunch was divine - Phoebe sure spoilt us, and the game of bocce after we indulged was good to get us out of our chairs to work off some of the decadence of lunch! The 'survival kits' were a God-send - equipping our guests with water, jelly beans and Hydrodol - anti hangover tablets. Talk about investing in the next day! We had all bases covered.

It was a gorgeous day all round and thank you to Beth and Kelly for all the trouble they went to to help pull it off.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Bowerbird Bazaar

We've finally hit the big time! The little old Rad has embraced design and good taste and showcased a plethora of gorgeous goodies at the recent Bowerbird Bazaar at the Queens Theatre.
I bought some stunning greeting cards and prints for my slowly developing cluster wall - one which I intend to focus on next week during my break between jobs.
Bree's cousin Austin lapped up the Bowerbird bizzo, manning his Two Halves stall. Love love love his Jack and Jill hooks - would make for great kids presents. What cool bag or coat hooks in a little one's bedroom or in the laundry?
As for the Queens Theatre . . . wow, what a venue - imagine how stunning it could look for a wedding or black tie ball, stunning! Needs a lot of work, but so much potential.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Putting the 'kitsch' in Kitchen Tea

It's been a long time between drinks but during ad breaks in tonight's Underbelly premiere, I found the motivation to download some pics that have been clogging up my memory card lately.

I've had a crazy busy yet very exciting past few months and it's time to share some of the love! First of all, here are some pics from the gorgeous kitchen tea we hosted for Michelle at my parents' place a month or so ago. It was Cath Kidston inspired, with a vintage flavour helping to theme the day. Think polka dots, china tea cups and frilly aprons. Gorgeous!
There was a bolognaise taste test challenge, recipe swaps, melting moment take aways for the guests and cheeky punch that had quite the kick to it!