Wednesday, 30 November 2011

My favourite fast food.

There are some days where I want to potter about the kitchen for hours, just relaxing and getting into everything, cooking and baking and all that delicious nonsense.

.. Aaaaand then there's day I cook because people are over, and we need to be fed. This usually happens after our grocery shopping, which takes places in the afternoon.
When we get home around 5, 6 o'clock, I know that I want food, as soon as possible, as easily as possible. And this is when I love having good convenience products at my disposal.

I know I've spoken about Henry Langdon's products before, mainly their delicious cocoa, but their salt rubs make dinner as simple as:
  1. Get meat, chicken or fish
  2. Apply spice or salt rub
  3. Shallow fry until cooked, serve with salad or steamed veggies.

Seriously. This is my current rushdown cooking, and my favourite combination so far has been the coriander, kaffir lime and chilli salt rub on fresh flake fillets, fried, with a tangy green salad with mixed beans and balsamic dressing.
The coriander doesn't overwhelm anything, like it does in the fresh form, and the lime and chilli are perfect in the warming weather, a real slap to the palate.



This post isn't sponsered by Henry Langdon, but I wouldn't say no if it was. Their products are fantastic and full of exotic flavours.

Saturday, 19 November 2011

Moving along.. Super-easy chocolate truffles.

The last week or two have been a time of relaxation and rebuilding, for me. I've been thinking a lot (which hurts), trying to exercise even more, and sorting out things with people and myself.

Soooo, of course, along the way, I need sustenance. And at this point and time, it is chocolate I want. And not in any sort of practical amount, I want full-on chocolate. I want chocolate with chocolate, with more chocolate.

.. Yes, I know,  kind of counter-acts the whole 'exercise and health' thing. BUT. I have been good. I haven't started wallowing in cocoa and deliciousness. I have been (somewhat) restaining myself.

That being said, I made some chocolate truffles a while ago, and while I have made them before, these ones came out the best. Getting the ratio of chocolate and cream has been my issue in the past, and due to different recipes (and my sieve-memory), things haven't always gone.. Quite right. Chocolate seizing is not pretty, or tasty.

For an easy chocolate fix, for munchies or for a gift for someone, make chocolate truffles yourself. All you need is 4 ingredients, and some time for them to set.

Dark chocolate truffles   -   makes roughly 20

Ingredients:
375g packet dark chocolate chips (70% cacao is tastiest)
180ml thickened cream
1 tbsp port, or other liquor like it
Cocoa for dusting (if you have to use hot chocolate in place of cocoa, make sure is it good quality)

Method:
  1.  Place the cream and chocolate in a large stainless steel bowl. Have another bowl or glass dish ready
  2. Bring a small pot of water to the boil. Fill it only about a third of the way
  3. Take the pot off the heat. When the water has stopped boiling, then place the stainless steel bowl on top of the pot. Do not let the water touch the bowl directly
  4. Stir the chocolate and cream together occasionally with a spatula, unti melted together. Add the port and stir in until completely combined
  5. Pour the chocolate mixture into the glass dish. Allow to cool to room temperature, then plac ein the fridge to set, for about an hour or two
  6. When the mixture is firm enough to touch and not stick, pour a good amount of cocoa powder onto a plate or chopping board
  7. Roll teaspoonfuls of the chocolate mixture into balls in your hands, then roll them in the cocoa powder. If your hands start to heat up too much, wet them with a small amount of water in between
  8. Store them in the fridge. Give as gifts, or eat with any excuse
This recipe works with milk chocolate as well, as well as variations of cocoa. My favourite combo was dark chocolate, with port, rolled in chilli cocoa powder. 
The important part is the ratio: any amount of chocolate, half the amount of cream.

 And pardon the typos, so tired. Bluh.

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

October madness.

.. So. October was a crazy month. Not just for me, it seems, but for everyone I know. Full of ups and downs, it is a month I half want to forget, and half want to celebrate.

The downsides are typical, but were painful for me. Same as before, looking for work stressed me out to the point of a breakdown (followed by lovely heartburn, ugh), and I had to reconsider my future and life, and my choices.
My girlfriend has been stressed to her eyeballs, finishing her advanced diploma of fashion. I've tried to be supportive, as well as realistic, and frankly, I can't decide who is going to be more relieved when the course is over.

I tend to worry about my friends a lot, some of whom are going through the same fun of looking for work, which I can really sympathise with. Then there's health problems, not just mine, but some members of my family as well.

But that's the downsides. Getting those off my chest and talking about these things with people has been one of the better aspects of this ugly October.

Now, the best parts of the month:
  • Two friends and I went to see Blind Guardian in concert. It was, in a word, amazing. They played one of each of our favourite songs, and the gig left us all with sore necks from headbanging, as well as sore throats for the next few days.
  • I had some catering work to do! The lovely Katie from 'Sew, Cook, Laugh' gave me the pleasure (and the excuse) to bake up a storm, once for some gluten-free sweets for her brother's wedding, the second time to do the desserts for her hubby's birthday.
  • I've had some lovely products to work with. Katie has been supplying me with duck eggs (and chicken, but the duck eggs are the best), which make the most amazing baked goods I've been practicing (tee hee) my steak-cooking skillz with gorgeous meat from LaManna Direct in Essendon, and I've been raving about Henry Langdon's awesome spices and cocoa so much I think I'm going to explode.
  • Even though it was techincally September, I got to bake for my sister's birthday, and made a silly-but-delicious gluten free, dairy free chocolate cake, which was one of the tastiest gluten-free things I've made. Dense and moist, with rich creamy chocolate frosting, I was really proud of it.
  • I've been indulging my nerdy side and playing more videogames, and loving it. Replaying BioShock (1 and 2) has been providing me with plenty of fun suspense and brick-shitting moments.
    RockBand has been great for getting out energy and getting a bit of exercise, and I've been hanging out with a good mate and learning to play fighting games again. I might even be enterting a small local tourny next time it is on! Fun stuff~
Also, I have applied to study patisserie next year! I can't wait to start. 

Things are looking up now. I'm taking time out from looking for work, and focusing on my health and my own pleasure. I needed a wake up call, and I got it, so now I'm looking forward to what I want to do in future.

Now, pictures from the aforementioned fun. Onward, toward 2012~

Some of the catering I did. The desserts for the birthday, including choc cheesecake, profiteroles, trifles, and the best lemon cake (thanks Mum <3).
Also,gluten free jam tarts from the wedding. I was so proud of these! Om nom.

 

A beautiful but GIANT duck egg.

  

A porterhouse steak from LaManna, cooking in my favourite pan. Mmm, griddle marks.

 
One of Katie's chicken eggs. I like making them stand up. Hee.


My sister's gluten free, dairy free birthday cake! This was fun to make, and delicious to boot.
Tee hee.

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Under the weather.

Bluh.

It is that time of year again. Hayfever, colds, stomach bugs.. All coming out to play. I love Spring, don't get me wrong, but it always seems to attract the bugs that skipped Winter. Not to mention pollen is everywhere, the windy days pick up dust, and the sun starts getting a real bite to it.

I try to avoid taking medication for colds and stomach problems and the like, since I take regular medication already. So I generally like to pick up natural remedies, within reason, and give them a go.

The ones that I really believe in are, much to my pleasure, tea related.

For heartburn or reflux, I take some fresh spearmint leaves steeped in boiling water. I prefer spearmint of pepper or normal mint, as it has a natural sweeter flavour, and isn't too strong.
You can leave the leaves in if you wish, but either way, the resulting tea has that menthol cooling effect, and it takes the edge off the acidic burn.



 For relief from cold, flu, hayfever or sore throat symptoms, I drink one of my favourite mixtures. 
English breakfast tea, strong, with heaps of lemon and a teaspoon of honey. 
The only 'must-dos' with this, is the lemon juice has to be fresh, not plastic stuff, and you must drink it hot, or as hot as you can stand it. It soothes the throat, helps any mucus build up move along, and if you have any fresh ginger, grate some i to add extra flavour, and to help fight off the bug.
This amber liquid is also one of my favourite drinks in general.

Friday, 7 October 2011

Perfect brownies, also gluten free!

Whew!

Okay, so today was busy with baking, and all of it gluten free for a lovely friend's brother's wedding. Specifcally, chocolate mousse shots, jam tarts, chocolate chip cookies and brownies, for afternoon tea.

It was all good fun, despite me working myself into stressing, but overall, I'm happy with how things turned out.. Unfortunately, I didn't take any photos, as I just wanted to get it all done, but I must share this recipe for chocolate brownies.

I have never made brownies before, but I have eaten a lot of them (more than I care to admit). Some have been dense and sickly sweet, some have been cake-ish and crumbly.
This recipe, is in a word, perfect. It is fudgy, without being heavy, rich without being sickening, sweet without hurting the teeth, with a tiny bit of crunch on the top and intense chocolate pleasure all the way through.

The recipe is from my current second favouite cook book, 'High Tea: Recipes with a sense of occasion', tweaky slightly to adapt to my taste, and to the dietary requirements.

Chocolate brownies   -   makes 16

Ingredients:
125g dark chocolate, chopped (Whittaker's 50% cocoa was perfect)
90g salted butter, softened (the salt in the butter balanced the flavour, I find)
230g caster sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs
85 gluten free plain flour
30g unsweetend cocoa powder, sifted (I use Henry Langdon's pure cocoa, and you should too, it is that good)
1/2 tsp baking powder (make sure it is not derived from wheat)
Pure icing sugar, for dusting
Method:
  1. Preheat oven to 180C. Grease a 17cm square baking tin, and line the base with baking paper, extending the paper to go over the sides for easy removal later
  2. Put the dark chocolate in a heatproof bowl. Fill a medium sized pot with water from a boiled kettle (or boil some water, but take it off the heat), place the heatproof bowl on the pot and allow the steam to melt the chocolate. Stir occassionally.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar until lightly and fluffy, then add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each. 
  4. Stir in the melted, slightly cooled chocolate (it will be safe to add when it is safe to touch, is my rule)
  5. Fold in the sifted cocoa in two batches, then sift in the flour and baking powder. If using flour that contains gluten, do not overwork the mixture, as it will make it tough
  6. Pour into the prepared tin and smooth the surface with a spatula. Bake for 25 - 30 minutes, until a skewer comes out with crumbs clinging to it, but not liquid
  7. Cool in the tin, then remove from the tin carefully.
    If you're having trouble lifting it out, place a wire rack on top of the tin, place on hand on each side and flip over. Remove tin and baking paper, flip the brownie onto the underside of the tin, then slide back onto a chopping board right-side up
  8. Cut into 4 rows, then 4 pieces per row. Dusting with icing sugar
  9. Devour

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Homemade marshmallows~

Marshmallows are something I've been wanting to make for a long while now, but have been putting off. Even though I know the process and the technique, there's something a bit daunting about attempting to make such a well-loved, commercial foodstuff.

But when a craft day with a couple of awesome ladies came up on my calendar, I finally decided to do tackle these fluffy delights. With the help of the ever-faithful KitchenAid, called Nigella (shut up),and a good-quality sugar thermometer, these were a joy to make, and a joy to eat.

I used a recipe from the River Cottage Family Cookbook, which a friend had recommended, and even though I made a few adjustments, they came out great. Sweet enough without being sickly, with a nice hint of vanilla, and the texture is the sort of plush squishiness that makes me giggle while eating them!


Homemade vanilla marshmallows   -   makes 42

Ingredients:
1 tbsp icing sugar
1 tbsp rice flour
Vegetable oil for oiling tin and knife
25g gelatine powder
125ml hot water
1 tsp vanilla bean paste OR 2 tsp vanilla extract
2-3 drops (optional) red food colouring
2 egg whites
500g caster sugar
250ml water
Must-have equipment:
Free-standing mixer
Sugar thermometer
Butter knife
20cm square cake tin
Sieve
Method:

1. Sift the icing sugar and rice flour together in a bowl. Grease tin all over lightly with a few drops of oil and dust liberally with flour and sugar mixture on all sides. Set aside

2. Mix the 125ml of hot water with gelatine, red food colouring and vanilla with a wooden spoon until the gelatine has all dissolved. Set aside

3. Stand the food mixer on the bench near the stove (if possible). Put the egg whites into the bowl of the mixer

4. Put caster sugar and 250ml water into a medium sized pot. Stir with a wooden spoon over a low heat until sugar has completely dissolved, then stop! 

5. Rinse the sugar thermometer in hot water, then stand it in the pan. Increase heat to high and allow to boil. Meanwhile, switch on the mixer and whisk the egg whites until they're completly stiff, then switch to low. Don't worry about them too much, the air will collapse, but can be beaten up again!

6. The sugar need to boil until it reaches 122C (called 'hard ball' stage), so watch it carefully. Once it reaches this temperature, remove from the heat immediately. Take out the sugar thermometer

7. Pour the dissolved gelatine into the pan of syrup and stir with a wooden spoon until all combined

8. Switch the food mixer back onto high, get the egg whites firm again, then switch to low. Pour the syrup into the eggwhites, avoiding the beaters themselves. The mixture will turn creamy. Once all the syrup is poured, increase the speed and keep beating the mixture until it reaches 'ribbon stage', about the texture of semi-whipped cream

9. Pour the marshmallow into the prepared tin. Cover with a plate or another dish, and allow to set in a cool place (not the fridge). Give it about 2 hours, until slightly tacky to the touch, but firm.

10. Dust a chopping board with the rest of the flour/sugar mixture. Coat butter knife in a little oil, and run it along the edges. Carefully ease the mashmallow out of the tin onto the board using your hands, and the butter knife. It should peel out in one wobbly piece.
Using a sharp knife, rubbed with a little oil, slice the marshmallow into 7 strips, then each strip into 6 3cm x 3cm pieces. Dust the marshmallows all over with icing sugar, then eat!




Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Rainy days.. Wholemeal date and bran muffins.

After a hot, blustery day yesterday, today was a pleasant change to wake up to. With a gorgeous rain scent on the air and nothing particularly planned to do today, I set about relaxing, drinking tea and sending out job applications.

And.. maybe watching some 'Kitchen Nightmares'. It's a guilty pleasure.

I felt like something sweet, but healthy, so I turned to my favourite muffin recipe and baked these for the family to enjoy. The weather is still switching from rainy and windy, to sunny and full of Spring, but these have hit the spot as usual.

This is my favourite muffin recipe. Wholemeal or white flour, brown sugar or caster, frozen berries or dried fruit, this recipe is reliable every time I use it. It is simply wet ingredients into dry, and the batter can be whipped up in under 10 minutes~

Wholemeal date and bran muffins  -  makes 10 medium sized muffins

Ingredients:
220g wholemeal self raising flour
120g brown sugar (I didn't have any castor sugar, either will work)
100ml vegetable oil
150ml milk
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
150 added flavourings (in this case, 100g chopped dried dates and 50g bran cereal)

Method:
  1. Preheat oven to 180C. Line a muffin tin with 10 patty pans
  2. Put flour, sugar and dates into a bowl and mix together
  3. In another bowl, mix oil, egg, milk and vanilla together until well combined
  4. Pour wet ingredients into dry and mixed together gently. A lumpy batter makes a light muffin, so use a folding motion and don't beat too roughly
  5. Lastly add the bran and fold through gently
  6. Fill the patty pans 3/4 full, or with a heaped tablespoon
  7. Into the oven for 15 - 20 minutes, until a skewer comes out clean from the centre. 
  8. Enjoy warm with a cup of tea, best on a rainy day~




Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Baking to de-stress, orange & polenta cookies.

So I've been tackling the fun task of applying for jobs. This has been stressing me out, as indeed it tends to stress anybody out, so a bit of baking was in order to calm my nerves and my sweet tooth.

.. The only problem being that I seem to have a sudden shortage of ingredients. No cinnamon, no self raising flour (not a big deal, but still annoying), none of my favourite margerine.. I was stumped for a little while. Not to mention my brain was still screaming "WORKWORKWORKJOBSARGH" at me.

After checking a few cook books, I settled on a recipe from a book called 'High Tea: Recipes with a sense of occasion', which is full of awesome slice cakes, fancy little petit fours, brownies, cookies, etc.
I wanted something sweet, but not sickening, with more of a cake-ish texture than a snappy-biscuit.

These turned out exactly as I hoped, nice and light, lots of citrus and the polenta adds a nice texture sensation.

Orange and lemon polenta cookies  -  makes 18

Ingredients:

125g unsalted butter or margerine, softened
80g caster sugar
Finely grated zest of 1 orange and 1 lemon
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs, lightly beaten  (I used duck eggs, as I had them and they are fabulous for baking <3)
165g plain flour
80g fine polenta
Method:
  1. Preheat the oven to 200C. Line two baking trays with baking paper
  2. In a large bowl, cream the butter, sugar, zest and vanilla until light and smooth
  3. Gradually add the eggs, beating thoroughly. If the mixture splits, add a tablespoon of flour and beat to combine
  4. Add the flour and polenta bit by bit, until all combined and it forms a sticky dough
  5. Transfer the mixture into a piping bag fitted with a large star nozzle, and proceed to pipe into 10cm long cresent shapes., leaving a 2cm gap between each
  6. Put into the oven for 15 minutes, until golden and coloured on the base
  7. Allow to cool on the tray for a minute or so, then transfer to a wire rack.
  8. Enjoy with a cup of strong coffee or tea.






Saturday, 3 September 2011

Once more, with feeling.. [Ramble incoming]

I've believed for a long time now, that what you eat is how you feel, in that your diet can really impact your moods and general wellbeing.

May sound a little bit obvious to some, but to me, it never rang true, until I changed the way I ate in Year 12, after a nasty bit of foodpoisoning. I went from having two hotdogs with cheese (and way too much mustard) and around a litre of vanilla Coke a day, to baked muffins, fruit and -actual- meals.
And amazingly, I noticed a change in my moods. I changed a lot that year, for other reasons as well, but the health kick certainly made a difference.

When I did try to have some processed rubbish again out of sheer laziness, in the form of a nasty school hot dog, I felt wretched afterwards, and was in a completely foul and bleak mood for the rest of the day.
So after that, I cut down and focused, mostly, on whole foods. Well and good.

But even though I eat fairly well now, when I'm lazy, I take shortcuts. Lately, I've been forgetting to eat whole meals, due to outside factors as well. Which has been making me feel, frankly, crap.

Which makes me have no energy and become lazy. Which makes me take shortcuts and not eat properly.

Which makes me feel crap.

Yeah, the pattern is obvious. For a few hours today, I just wanted to go home and mope. Not go anywhere tomorrow. Nope. Just sleep. And maybe cry a little. Pathetic.

After having a seemingly insignificant lunch of a sundried tomato, cheese and chive wholemeal muffin, I near-instantly felt better. Even later after a proper bangers and mash dinner (mmm, chilli sauce), followed by a nice glass of red wine, I look at my mood earlier today and begin to think that my moodswings have been absolutely stupid.

The more stupid thing? I know this all along. Yet we all let ourselves fall into bad habits, only to dig ourselves out, wag our fingers, then slowly slip back.

Maybe I just need to smack myself with a newspaper and get over it. Maybe I need to not be so emotionally linked to food?  Maybe I just need to get into a new health kick and boot myself up the arse.. Or maybe a bit of everything.

Right now? I'm finishing a glass of wine, and somewhat enjoying the fact that eating well makes me happy. Not matter how silly it may seem.

Thursday, 1 September 2011

This is getting out of hand.

Two more, these both filled with wheat so they stand on their own.



I better get some more baking done soon, or these dudes will take over!

Sunday, 28 August 2011

Possibly a new hobby..

I can see myself making more of these.


I've never sewn anything before in my life. It took, on and off, about 2 hours. I didn't follow all the instructions, stabbed myself a few times with the needle, but after all that, I made this lil' dude.

He's from this book, Felties, and I can't wait to have another go at making more little critters.

.. Even if they are a little cutesy.

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Shifty shortcut: Quick caramelised onions

I love caramelised onions, but I'm too impatient to stand around and wait for it to all happen naturally, the onions softening, the sugars finally coming out and going dark and glassy and delicious.

So, I found a shortcut that I adore~ Thinly slice a red onion, throw it on a screaming hot griddle with a tiny amount of oil (not too much, or it will smoke like crazy) and cook it until it softens a bit and gets a little colour.

Then, splash on a good lug of balsamic vinegar. It doesn't have to be top shelf stuff, but something half decent, and allow the vingear to bubble up and reduce a little.
The sugar in the balsamic will sweeten the onions, the acid will soften them, and they come out beautiful, and have a fantastic smokey-sweet flavour.

If you have cooked some meat to go with, do this process in the same pan, as the vinegar will pick up the meat juices and flavour, and add that to the onions.  
So. Good.

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Healer's Market, plus vegan cupcakes~

For a couple of months now, I have been doing the food stuffs for the monthly Healer's Market in Moonee Ponds, while the lovely Sally (who offered me the spot) does awesome coffee and drinks.

It is generally pretty fun, and gives me a rather good outlet for experimental baking, especially concerning dietary requirements. Though after my first market, it because clear that while I had predicted that a mostly-vegetarian menu would be best, a lot of other allergies had been brought up.

So far, I have managed to accomodate for vegans, coeliacs (gluten intolerant/allergy), lactose intolerants, onion intolerants, people who avoid vegetables in the nightshade family (that one I learned on the job; i didn't expect it!)..
I'm pretty happy with what I have been able to put up. But finding something sweet and portable for vegans, apart from a very easy gluten-free vegan shortbread (which I will post at a later date), was beginning to shit me. I'm stubborn, what can I say.

So, I bit the bullet, and tried a simple vegan cupcake recipe. The idea of doing a cake without egg did my head in a teensy bit, but the result left me giggling like a little kid. I was very excited!

Cinnamon vegan cupcakes  -  makes 10

Dry ingredients:

1 1/2 cups plain flour
3/4 cup castor sugar
3/4 tsp baking powder
 1/2 tsp baking soda (bi-carb soda)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon

Wet ingredients:

1 cup soy milk
1 1/2 tsp apple cider  vinegar
1/3 cup rice bran oil (vegetable, canola or sunflower seed would work also)
2 tsp vanilla essence

Method:
  1.  Preheat oven to 180C. Line a 12 capacity muffin tray with patty pans
  2. Measure up all ingredients, wet ingredients in one bowl, dry in another. 
  3. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry. Beat until smooth.
  4. Place 2 tablespoonfuls of batter into each patty pan, or until filled 3/4 of the way up
  5. Into the oven on the middle shelf, for 20 minutes, or until golden and a skewer comes out clean
The result? Beautifully risen cupcakes! Quite moist, perfectly lovely normal cake taste..Everyone is happy.

.. Okay, except the coeliacs, soy intolerants,  OKAY OKAY.

Anyway. I also iced them with a vanilla glaze, because I was dead tired and lazy. 

Icing sugar, with 1/4 tsp vanilla bean paste, hot water and a tiny bit of lemon juice. I find lemon juice really brings out the white in the icing, and adds an almost sherbet-y taste.


Also YAY FIRST RECIPE.

Saturday, 13 August 2011

Cooking backwards? Whoops~

I hate it when you suddenly realise that even though you've done something a few times before, and it has worked fine, it turns out that you've been doing it the wrong way.

I had that with a chocolate ganache icing I made for some wholemeal chocolate and orange cupcakes. I've made it at least a dozen times before, and it siezed on me (went grainy and hard) when I added the cream to the melted chocolate.

Confused, I consulted Mum, who I bounce off of a lot when it comes to anything culinary, who suggested to add more cream.
With my best mate watching in amused, I proceedly to curse and beat the living hell out of this stupid ganache, adding cream until it because silky and smooth.

I triumphantly spread the rescued ganache onto the cupcakes, though a little voice was in the back of my head nagging me. We all ate one, and they taste amazing.
But while everything tasted great, the ganache ended up splitting. This doesn't affcted the taste, it just means a bit of the fat from the cream comes to the surface, which ruins the shine of the ganache.

After a bit more swearing, I figured out that I've been doing it completely backwards. The 'proper' way is to heat the cream, then pour over the broken-up chocolate and stir until it is melted and reaches the right consistency (thanks Larousse~).

So yeah. That's my fuck-up. But it still tastes good. Bah humbug.

Note: If you want a drinking chocolate with a difference, check out the range from Grounded Pleasures. Their orange-scented drinking chocolate converted me to the pleasures of citrus and bittersweet chocolate.

Thursday, 11 August 2011

Beginnings.

Nothing is more intimidating to me than a blank page.. A good way to start is to explain a bit more about myself, and where I'm coming from with this blog. So here we go.

Over the last two years or so, I started trying to figure out what I wanted with my life. I started my first job in a cafe, my formal training as a chef, and my next job waitressing. A lot of these changes scared the bajeezus out of me to be completely honest, and none of it was very smooth to start with.

I ended up quitting my job at the cafe, but I learned a lot about myself, and it inspired me to go on to formal training as a chef, which I did a few months later. I still visit that cafe a lot, and they're all awesome people.

I got into waitressing to get a bit of extra cash, and even though it is one of those jobs that cops a bad name, it helped me come out of my shell and has easily been one of the best things I have ever done.
While customer service can be painful every now and then, it is definitely good for building people skills.

I started my training at William Angliss in 2010 with fear, and ended it in 2011 with a passion for food, and oddly enough, an even stronger passion for baking in particular. I used to be scared to make cupcakes, for crying out loud, and now I can't wait to have an excuse to whip up another batch.

But almost as much as creating food, I love talking about it. I have been considering making a blog for years, and now that I have a bit of a break between study, I figured it was about time to get started.

While I will most likely ramble on about food, music and videogames are another two hobbies of mine that I love as well. I tend to love having music on as I cook, and while listening to screaming men and loud guitars might not be everyone's cuppa.. Eh, it works for me~
 I love baking for friends and family, and considering some of these lovely people have some food intolerances or allergies, it can be rather.. Interesting sometimes, to try and work with that. I like to share these recipes and ideas, because it is becoming an issue in our culture now a days.

So, hopefully I'll be able to keep this blog rolling. I didn't want to restrict it to purely food, so I could update without having to stress about having pictures or anything like that. And let's be honest, we all get distracted and/or need to have a rant about random stuff every now and then.

Well, that's a bit about me, and about the blog, and I'm in dire need of tea.
So see you around~