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Monday, April 27, 2009

10 April 09 - More cooking, more eating

My breakfast journey continued last weekend, in the traditional post-pump manner, at Van's Sidewalk Cafe in Cottesloe. I was a little apprehensive given the disappointment of Six Clicks West, and the fact that we were dining in prime bunch period on a Sunday but I am happy to report that a table was free when we arrived (only just!) and the menu was interesting! Hurrah!

I am getting quite picky with my breakfast menu critique, since I am perusing one at least twice a week at the moment, and words cannot describe my bitter disappointment at seeing the most interesting item on a breakfast menu is that there is the option of wholegrain bread with your full breakfast. Our joy at finding some interesting options on the breakfast menu at Van's was further enhanced when we discovered the "Morning" dishes on the menu (that is, all the breakfast style dishes) were actually available to choose from at any time of the day. This was a particularly salient point given that we were eating breakfast at 12:30pm.

I opted for the "breakfast bruschetta" and the only disappointment was that the waitress pronounced is "brooshetta" which normally annoys my inner food snob quite a lot but in this case she said it in such a friendly way I was able to overlook it. I have eaten all too many things between this breakfast and today (especially today) but I will try to recall my dish... I believe it was toasted sourdough (nice and thick, with no butter, yay), with a generous serving of spinach, shredded leg ham and creamy feta on top, with a poached egg and some crispy prosciutto. It was so wonderful to have some real, good quality ham after being served pre-sliced straight-from-the-packet ham in so many other places. The serving did not look huge when it came out, but turned out to be just the perfect size for my post-workout hunger. The long black was also good but not fantastic.

Sadly I cannot recall the dish of my dining partner but he was also very pleased with his meal. It was also quite a nice vibe in there. Lots of attractive, happy people out enjoying each other's company on a beautiful sunny Perth Sunday (and despite this, I didn't pick up on any of the snobbery you can feel in some of the hipster-laden parts of town). Of course, this may have been due to the endorphins I had been working up but I'm willing to attribute it to the location.

This is been quite a week of cooking for me, what with the 37 cupcakes of the last post and a morning tea I organised for Tuesday. I managed to whip up a batch of orange poppyseed cupcakes, Nutella lava cookies, and my newly favourite cake - a coffee lamington cake. I have photos of these on my camera but my computer's card reader seems to be on holiday so I shall add them to the post when I find the cable.

Today was also a big day of cooking, and an even bigger day of eating. It is a strongly held tradition in my family to eat one's weight in food, preferably seafood, on Good Friday. Unfortunately my sister shirked her responsibilities somewhat given that she is recovering from a nasty stomach bug/poisoning/grossness incident, but I reached deep and covered her shortfall. We enjoyed a range of tasty salads, fresh bread, oven roasted coral trout filled with a rice/olive/pistachio/currant/caper/etcetc stuffing, cray tails and prawns, smoked albacore, and a salmon and scallop ceviche. I made the ceviche, and was so pleased that it turned out well with all the flavours in happy harmony. All of the food was superb, as per usual, and of course everyone ate too much.

Not so much however that dessert was out of the question, which was just as well as I made a Hot Cross Bun and Butter Pudding. In fact, I made two. One using chocolate hot cross buns, and one using normal hot cross buns. They were served with blueberries, sliced peaches and pineapple and seemed to go down a treat. I think I shall be making these again, though I guess if I want to make it between now and next easter I should buy some hot cross buns and freeze them. Well, I can always make my own hot cross buns but it seems a bit of a waste of time to make the buns and then turn them into a pudding. Better to take up precious freezer space in the anticipation of pudding, I say.

Funnily enough, as I was preparing the pudding this morning we had Kerri-Anne on the tv and she had a cooking guest on who was making... hot cross bun and butter puddings. Mum and I agreed that my recipe was better, if only because it included brandy. I also cooked mine using a bain marie method whilst they said this was too difficult. Pah!

Ceviche photo update....


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