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Showing posts from January, 2017

Is this tasty treat Australia's national cake?

It's time to set one thing straight, to wave off the contenders and just say it how it is - lamingtons are Queenslanders!

Scorned at high teas but the backbone of sporting club fundraising, lamingtons – the cube of sponge cake dipped in chocolate and swathed in coconut – are an Australian institution. And like all famous faces, many lay claim to its origin including Harlaxton House in Toowoomba and even New Zealand.

But when it comes to the lamington, QUT historian and Old Government House curator Dr Katie McConnel says there is no dispute.

”It was definitely first concocted at Old Government House by French chef Armand Galland,” Dr McConnel says.

”It’s all in the use of the chocolate and coconut and because Lady Lamington herself credited Armand Galland with this popular cake.

”Monsieur Galland came to Australia with Lord and Lady Lamington in 1900 and cooked for them until they left in 1901. The lamington was born of necessity – it was Monsieur Galland’s answer to the perenni…

5 top tips on how to cook the perfect sausage

Do your snags taste as good as they should on your plate?

Wondering what you are doing wrong when it comes to tossing a sausage on the barbecue?

Here's some tips from Errol, a trusted barbecue master cook who knows how to get the best out of a sausage.

Errol says-
Always have the plate on a low temperatureTurn the sausage regularly to make sure it is cooked thoroughlyKeep the moisture inside your sausages cook them slowly, so they are succulentDon't prick or cut them open or you'll end up with dry sausages.Cook over low heat for longer than you might think (10 to 15 minutes for a thick sausage)

Of course, it always helps to start with a great sausage.

My best tips arePut quality ahead of price - sausages are fairly inexpensive, and you can afford to buy the best available.Try unusual combinations - pork and fennel are my favourites but how about moroccan lamb and raisin, pork apple and cinnamon, or sweet chicken and corn?Always read the ingredient list when buying pre-packa…

Why international chefs are jealous of Australia

When international chefs, such as taste trail blazer Rene Redzepi, learn about Australia's wealth of bush tucker they go green with envy.

Coming from countries where most of the flavours have been tried and tested for centuries, it's like having a magic box of new toys to open and explore.  

With the organic superfood obsession sweeping across the nation, it’s a wonder that more of us haven’t foraged in our own backyards for some natural flavours like Wattle Seed, Lemon Myrtle and Quandong, also known as the desert peach.

According to Jude Mayall, native bush food expert
 and owner of Outback Chef, all it takes to turn your Aussie 
backyard into a superfood haven is just a tipple of

“I learned a lot about bush tucker from Aboriginal women who explained how their foraging process works through their vibrant and colourful paintings," says Mayall. "These paintings not only increased my knowledge, but they also fuelled a desire to go further with Australian na…

New Australia Day tradition - the ultimate Aussie rum cocktail

Looking for the perfect drink to wash down those sizzling snags straight off the barbie or the ultimate prawn sanger?

It’s got to be something with a little guts, a real Aussie brew that will put hair on your chest (only if you want it) and a smile on your dial.

Ryan Lane from The Gresham, one of Brisbane’s favourite bars, has devised two cocktails that speak to your inner true blue. They are rum inspired of course and they are top of the menu at the newly re-opened Beenleigh Distillery today to go with their free tours of the heritage-listed site.

So picture yourself wrapping your lips around a Working Class Man or slip down a Queensland Colada. Here’s the recipe or mosey on down to the distillery.

Working Class Man

45ml Beenleigh 5-year Double Barrel Rum
20ml Fresh Lime Juice
20ml Grenadine
Topped with Fortitude Golden Ale

Method:  Shake the rum, lime & grenadine together in a shaker. Before pouring, add beer to tin, then pour into glass. Garnish with a double orange slice.


You'll be amazed at this cupcake heaven

If your idea of heaven is cupcakes 24/7, I’ve found your people,
Here in Las Vegas, Sprinkles Cupcakes have an ATM which will automatically dispense cupcakes on demand.With a bank of 600 cupcakes to draw from, you can be pretty sure your favourite flavour is going to be there when you need it.
Sprinkles stores are located throughout the USA at 17 loctions although not all outlets have ATMs. Check the website to see if you are going to be lucky.The first cupcake ATM opened in Beverly Hills in 2012.
The Las Vegas store is located just off the strip on the mall that leads to the High Roller, next to the LINQ Hotel.

The ATM operates easily and my cupcake was dispensed without a hitch.The cupcake was dense and moist, obviously recently cooked.
Some, but not all flavours (notably my favourite salted caramel flavour) are available as cupcake kits so you can enjoy the Sprinkle experience at home.
I’ve been searching for the perfect cupcake since they first came to prominence about eight yea…

Celebrate Australia Day with an Aussie icon - the Pav!

Expect oohs and aahs when you place this crowd pleaser on the table for Australia Day dessert.
It is not too hard to make but it does need an oven with a good low temperature.

Also, don't ignore the tips about using a scrupulously clean bowl and metal spoon. You want those egg whites light and fluffy.  I also like to have the eggs at room temperature when I start, so get them out early.
Here's a recipe from the good folks at Merlo which gives the pav a coffee kick. I'd be inclined to add a few shards of chocolate on the top at the end. Merlo Coffee Pavlova with Summer Fruits Ingredients 75g icing sugar 1 shot of Merlo Espresso 4 eggs, whites only 110g caster sugar 425ml double cream 450 g summer fruits, such as strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and passionfruit Method Preheat the oven to 140ºC and line a large baking tray with good-quality greaseproof  paper.
Sift the icing sugar and coffee powder into a bowl. Then, in another spotlessly clean bowl, whisk the …

The perfect picnic is easier than you think - 10 top tips

Weekends and holidays are a great time to get out and about and enjoy a picnic with family and friends, but there's a lot to think about.

Here's 10 top tips for organising the perfect picnic this festive season.

1. Prepare just a few things and do them well. To ease up on the cooking visit your local deli and top up with a few goodies like olives, beautiful cheese and crackers.

2. Put small bottles of water or juice in the freezer for a few hours. These can then double-up as chiller-blocks to keep food cool and when you reach your picnic spot, the drinks will still be cold.

3. Choose foods to serve all at the same time. The fun of a picnic is to spread all the food on the blanket and let everyone laze around, helping themselves. Pack plenty of fabulous picnic ware to add extra style.

4. If you are going to serve a decent wine then it seems a waste to serve in plastic glasses. Take some real glasses with holders that stick into the ground.

5. Got any leftovers? Take aham or ro…

Noosa's new cafe is filled with local produce

Noosa's newest eating space is a cafe deli combination called Providore on Hastings just inside Netanya Noosa at the National Park end of Hastings Street.

With a tree-shaded outdoor deck filled with tables overlooking a water feature and more seating inside, this cafe offers an attractive new way to dine at Noosa.

It's also a haven for anyone seeking locally-made goods, with freshly made artisan bread, local coffee, regional cheeses, pastries, charcuterie items and more.

“All of the produce is Australian and – wherever possible – it is locally sourced,” said Netanya Noosa general manager Graham Bradford.

“Unlike the plethora of restaurants and cafés on the tourist strip, Providore on Hastings gives residents and holiday makers a genuine deli-style experience.

“We have 280 different deli items that people can take away to enjoy in their own apartments as well as a selection of ready-made meals prepared with the products we stock.”

Providore on Hastings also is licensed and …