Oven-Roasted Rhubarb & Vanilla Spiced Labneh

roasted-rhubarb-labneh

Rhubarb season is one of my favourites. There are a few fruit seasons that I always look forward to – cherries, blueberries, pineapple – and rhubarb is definitely right up there. It is my ultimate winter fruit (or vegetable, to be precise); perfect in baked goods and pie, delicious poached or, as I’ve recently discovered, most delectable when oven roasted. Although please be warned, this will not be the last rhubarb recipe this winter! Continue reading “Oven-Roasted Rhubarb & Vanilla Spiced Labneh”

Hummingbird Cake

hummingbird-cake-sunlight

A few weekends ago my brother and sister-in-law came up from Melbourne for a weekend visit. It was the first time they’d been up since W was born and it was especially lovely to watch them play and laugh with her. We didn’t do much – went to the market, cooked good food, ate good food, talked. My kind of weekend.

On the Saturday we spent most of the morning on the front verandah. S cooked us all up homemade baked beans and freshly brewed coffee and we lazed in the warm mid-winter sun. Having been up here in Brisbane for almost four years now, I’d forgotten what an incredible luxury hot sunshine in June actually is. Continue reading “Hummingbird Cake”

Lavender & Lemon Scones

lavender-scones-closeup

A few weeks ago S’s mum flew up from Maldon for a visit. Half of her bag was full of first-birthday presents for W, and the other half was full of home-cooked treats – spicy kasundi, anzac cookies, triple ginger cake (SO GOOD), and jam made from plums that she’d grown in her own garden.

The minute I see homemade jam, my first thought is scones. I rarely bake scones, but when I do it is usually around this time of year, when the cooler weather has started to kick in. We’ll pick up a jar of jam from a local market (or, in this case, be gifted one), and I’ll whip up a batch of scones to enjoy in the autumn sun with a pot of tea. Continue reading “Lavender & Lemon Scones”

Chai Spice Apple Cake

chai-spice-apple-cake

About a month ago now – after our camping trip in Girraween National Park – we spent a few nights in a wooden cabin in Stanthorpe. Autumn had just started and the leaves were turning all shades of copper and gold, perfect for catching the morning sun. The cabin had a wood heater and a deck hidden amongst the trees. There was no internet connection and no phone reception; we watched movies, ate chocolate in bed, and marveled as W took her first proper walk across the room. It was a most lovely way to spend a few days.

We also ate copious amounts of apple pie, went apple picking, and drank the best apple cider EVER. A big old tin shed filled with mismatched wooden tables and chairs, Sutton’s serves sweet and savoury pies and a selection of apple-themed takeaway goods – everything from apple juice to apple cider vinegar. The three of us strolled through their orchards, leisurely tasting apples right off the tree, slowly filling up a bag to take home with us. W definitely loved it – gorging on apples and falling over in the soft grass. Continue reading “Chai Spice Apple Cake”

Raw Cacao, Orange & Fig Energy Balls

energy-balls

Girraween National Park in Queensland sits on the border with New South Wales, and is a spectacular display of tumbling granite boulders and a hundred shades of green. Girraween means ‘place of flowers’ in the local indigenous language, although we’ve never actually been there in spring to see the wildflowers in bloom. There are fresh water streams running through the park, and a zig zag of walking tracks to stroll and plenty of mountains to climb.

This year was the third time we’ve gone out to Girraween to camp. Usually we shoulder our packs and spend two or three days hiking through the bush and camping by streams. This year though, with a 12 kilo baby to carry as well as all of our gear, we decided to hike in an hour to Underground Creek and make camp there, taking day walks and hanging out. Continue reading “Raw Cacao, Orange & Fig Energy Balls”

Rhubarb & Hazelnut Crumble Cake

Rhubarb & Hazelnut Crumble Cake

One of the reasons we moved somewhere warm and tropical after Melbourne was that we were sick and fucking tired of the endless Melbourne winters. Every year it seemed as though the bitter cold weather dragged out for longer and longer. Our small terrace house was narrow and old, and only had heating in the lounge room; in winter going to the bathroom in the middle of the night was an extreme sport.

Brisbane, on the other hand, has over 300 days of sunshine a year. It is warm enough to wear sandals most of the year, and even in the heart of winter there is really no need to wear gloves (my poor leather gloves have been sitting unloved in the closet for over three years now!). It is so lovely to live in a climate that doesn’t demand a scarf collection, but every now and then I miss the trappings of cold weather…

Continue reading “Rhubarb & Hazelnut Crumble Cake”

Espresso Nut Muffins

espresso-nut-muffins

S and I are both pretty particular about our coffee. I drink espresso coffee, and I like it straight up – black and without sugar. When you’re drinking coffee with none of the fixings, if the beans are burnt, or if the brew is bitter, it ruins the taste. That said, between pregnancy and breastfeeding it’s been almost two years since I actually drank a coffee (ahh, how I miss it).

S, on the other hand, is somewhat of a coffee connoisseur these days. Over the past two years he’s been trying a variety of different coffee beans which he grinds at home, and experimenting with various ways of making coffee using an AeroPress. Given the blistering heat that is Brisbane these days, he’s mostly been drinking 12-hour brewed cold press coffee – it is the colour of rich dark amber, and smells wonderful.

Continue reading “Espresso Nut Muffins”