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Confessions of a naughty knitter June 30, 2007

Posted by Sarah in knitting.
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See this? p6290015-small.jpg and this?p6290016-small.jpg

I have a confession to make.  I made this lovely cushion cover a while back, and ran out of yarn very close to the end of the project.  No worries, I’ll call the store.  Nope, out of stock.  Great!  Ok, I’ll just cast off and work something out.  Well, three weeks have passed and I’ve been knitting everything else I can get my hands on, all the while glaring at this from the other side of the room.  I finally bought a cushion insert on Thursday, learnt how to stitch it up, but its not working.  So, I think I’ll follow Joh’s suggestion and just turn it into “a very smart hood”.

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Lindt Chocolate Cafe June 30, 2007

Posted by Sarah in cake, chocolate, dining out, food.
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We left the Craft Show grumpy, tired and hungry.  What to do… what to eat… Chocolate of course!

Neither of us had been to the Lindt cafe before so expectations were high.

It was raining outside, the automatic doors wouldn’t close, and we had to wait for 10 minutes to be seated.  Good start.

Once we were seated we were presented with a menu consisting of chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate.  I actually was feeling like a little bite of something savoury first, but they had run out of sandwiches.  Cake it is then.

I ordered the Black Forest Cake and a Lindt Hot Chocolate.  The cake arrived about 30 seconds after we ordered, before our drinks.  It wasn’t a very exciting cake.  It tasted of tinned cherries, cheap cream and overly sweetened chocolate icing.  And at $11 I was expecting something a little more tasty.  The hot chocolate was very nice though, and as I looked around the restaurant I noticed plenty of people who had ordered just a hot chocolate.  Smart.  $5.50 for the hot chocolate but its enough for 3 cups, they give you a little jug of melted chocolate (your choice – milk or dark), and about 500ml of hot frothed milk.  They could have swapped the prices around – cake $5.50, hot chocolate $11 and I would have been happy.

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My buddy ordered a mocha ($5), which came with real chocolate in the glass and sprinkled on top.  It was declared the best that she’s had in Sydney!  Profiteroles ($11) were three tiny cream filled balls, covered with chocolate ganache, sitting on a disk of pure chocolate.  I think the disk of chocolate was what made this a winner.

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Verdict – go for a hot drink and a chocolate, but give cake the flick.  You can have mass-produced cakes anywhere in Sydney.

Sydney Craft and Quilt Fair June 30, 2007

Posted by Sarah in craft fair, Uncategorized.
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This show should really have been renamed “Old ladies interested in quilting exhibition”. OK, so I was a little naive expecting this to be a whole new world of craftiness. And perhaps I shouldn’t have gone on a Thursday when every Nana in Sydney was having a day out. I don’t mean to sound rude, but, man, old ladies can be really pushy!

I bought a few bits and pieces, there were some very nice wools available, but really, with so many half finished projects in the house I really shouldn’t be buying more. Damn me and my responsible mind.

The Quilt Show itself was quite cool though, it is amazing how much effort people make. There were some really beautiful Quilts, people are very talented.

This quilt was made by a 7 year old boy! p6280005-small.jpg

There was a golliwog stand, with heaps of old golliwogs. All really nicely looked after. There were some pretty creepy cultural reflections from that time though, I’m not sure if that was the point, or was it just someone showing off their doll collection? Weird.

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The stamp they gave you was cool :)

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Now, being someone who is looking to purchase a sewing machine in the near future, I’m constantly being told that I don’t need one with all the bells and whistles, with quilting stitches. I know, but really, look at these! This was part of a whole wall dedicated to Egyptian scenes. I really should have taken more photos.

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I’m glad I didn’t pay more than $16 for my entry, but probably wont go again next year.  Not without borrowing someone else’s Nana.

My Mum’s the coolest June 26, 2007

Posted by Sarah in fabric, gift, Uncategorized.
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I’ve just picked up a parcel from the post office that my Mum sent me.

She’s the coolest lady ever – look at the cute fabric that she sent me. And three packets of tim tams! Golly – looks like someone was quite taken by these and has decided to share her love of the great chocolate coated biscuit. Which to try first though? Sticky toffee vanilla sounds good.

Now I have to decide what to make with my new fabric. This just makes me want a sewing machine even more now. I hope I don’t end up impulse buying one while i’m looking for a cushion inner this afternoon.

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$35 the organic way… June 22, 2007

Posted by Sarah in dining in, food, organic, Uncategorized, vegetables.
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I’ve just received this weeks box of organic fruit and veges from Abundant Organics
One of my tiny pears was bruised, otherwise so far so good. I like that they put a bottle of frozen water in next to the milk that ordered to keep it cool in the courier van.
Posts on what I cook with these goodies will be coming soon.
Brussel sprouts anyone?

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Venison Sausages for dinner June 21, 2007

Posted by Sarah in dining in, food, vegetables, venison.
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Wow. What a fantastic meal Joh and I just sat down to.

Joh has been sick today so I thought it an appropriate time to pull the Venison sausages out of the freezer and make a warming winter meal. We were anticipating the delivery of our organic veges today, but we got our days mixed up and have to wait till tomorrow afternoon for them. Just as well we had some ideas up our sleeves.

Pine nut and apricot studded venison sausages. Delicious. Joh made some delicious hassleback potatoes. As Joh said, it turns out that they were no hassle at all. I made a big pan of caramelised onions to accompany the sausages. A salad of raw sliced bok choy, slivers of sweet navel oranges and smashed kalamata olives was made just before serving. Juicy whole roasted radishes completed the plate.

The bottle of Bago vineyards 2005 Petit Verdot we had been keeping for a special occasion matched the meal beautifully.

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Recipe for Pear and Cherry Crumble June 19, 2007

Posted by Sarah in crumble, dining in, food, recipe.
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A certain Rondoner I know wanted the recipe for this crumble.

First, make this but omit the anise.

Then, poach some peeled, cored, quartered pears in a syrup.

Make this from equal amounts of caster sugar, cider and water. Bring to the boil to let the sugar dissolve, then turn down a little and carefully put in your prepared pears and let them cook in the syrup until soft, but not mushy. Remove from the syrup and cool. Keep the syrup. They can be stored in the fridge (in their syrup) for about a week and used whenever you like.

Next, heat the oven to180 degrees celcius.

Cut up your pears, or leave them in quarters and place in the bottom of an oven dish. Open a jar of pitted cherries in syrup, drain off all that nasty syrup, rinse even. Use fresh cherries if in season, be sure to stone them first. Then scatter as many as you please onto your pears. Pour in a little of the pear poaching juice so that the bottom of the oven dish has a thin layer of juices (only about 1mm).

Crumble over as much shortbread mix that you want. Cook in the oven for about 30 minutes, or until golden on top, and you can see the fruit bubbling from underneath.

Serve warm with cream.

Sydney Good Food and Wine Show June 19, 2007

Posted by Sarah in Uncategorized.
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I might still be in pain today, but boy am I glad that I got my butt out of bed on Saturday morning and went to the gym.

This Saturday was the Food show. It’s a fun day out, and a good opportunity to get some of your favorite products at bargain prices.

I liked it, but I thought that the food stalls weren’t really that great. I didn’t see anything new there that I haven’t seen before. I’ve been to many of the food shows in Auckland and they were actually better than this one, with a much bigger focus on the food stalls. Sydney was half food half wine.

Having to use a plastic shot glass to taste wine because the swap centre ran out of fresh glasses was a definite annoyance.

I managed to resist buying Lindt chocolate at really reasonable prices, but I did come home with a lot of organic tea, soup and corn chips.

Oh, and a much adored bottle of Olive Grove Avocado and Horopito Pepper oil.  Yummo.

Tantrum central – I want my Mum! June 14, 2007

Posted by Sarah in crochet, knitting.
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So, its been raining all afternoon and I’ve been trying to work out how to crochet. I have a how to crochet book, several online tutorials, and still I can’t work out if what I’m doing is right or wrong. I’m about to just pull it all apart and start again. I’m going to send a photo of it to a flickr pool for crochet and hope someone will answer my cry for help. Please?

Why didn’t I just read a book today? Or finish my llama?

On a slightly less bitter note – I’ve started on a new knitted cushion cover today. It’s done in Knit 1 Purl 1, the first attempt for me at this stitch. Easy peasy it turns out.

Look what I made yesterday June 14, 2007

Posted by Sarah in baking, cake, craft club, felt, home made, llama.
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Orange, almond and quince cake

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Brown bread

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The beginnings of a crafty llama fridge magnet

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