Sunday, September 1, 2013

Monet's Garden, Giverney

Confession time.  I've had a severe case of writer's block since I returned from Europe. I think the problem is that I have so many ideas for posts, so many wonderful photos and so much I want to share that it is not coming together the way I would like it to! 


I have started a number of posts.  Bastille day in Saint Remy de Provence, my obsession with French supermarkets and the wonderful Les Halles de Lyon Paul Bocuse indoor market - just to name a few.  Works in progress.

So, in an effort to just start somewhere I thought I would do a non food post and share some photos of one of the most beautiful places I have ever visited.  The famous and fabulous house and garden of Impressionist painter Claude Monet.  I visited on a wet summer's morning which explains the slightly misty quality to some of the photos. (And the murky water!)

I have always loved Monet's work and visiting his home in the quaint town of Giverney was definitely a highlight of my trip.


Photos of the interior of the house are not permitted but the kitchen and dining room in particular are gorgeous.  (The copper pot collection is To.Die.For.)   There are photos online if you are interested.

A few weeks later I visited the Musée de l'Orangerie in Paris which houses Monet's Water Lilies (Les Nymphéas).  It was magical to see these stunning paintings after having seen the pond and water lilies in person.

I hope you enjoy and I promise there will be more food and travel posts coming very soon.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Pud Thai vs Pho

Shop 4, 60 Siddeley St
Docklands, VIC 3008

This small Thai/Vietnamese restaurant is a lovely little hidden gem.

Located in the WTC (World Trade Centre) Wharf precinct on the north bank it is just a few steps away from the Seafarers Bridge which links to the South Wharf restaurant/shopping precinct. 

I have dined here a number of times but I must admit I have not tried their Pud Thai or Pho!

Rice Paper Roll - $5 each
The prawn rice paper rolls were delicious.  Full of fresh vegetables and herbs. I love the translucency of the rice paper.

Dumplings - $5
The steamed prawn dumplings with a soy dipping sauce were very moreish little morsels.

Spring Rolls
And .. Spring Rolls

Now I didn't have the spring rolls but according to my friend who ordered them, she definitely ordered spring rolls on two different occasions, but as you can see they arrived looking quite different!  Maybe different chefs on different days?  Either way she enjoyed both versions.  Neither of us can remember what she was charged but the online menu says $5 per serve.

Thai Beef Salad - $12.90

I have had this Thai beef salad a few times and love it.  Its light, has lots of beautiful fresh salad and herbs and a very spicy dressing.

Lemongrass Beef - $11.90

I also really enjoyed this lemongrass beef dish.  The sauce was delicious and you add as much as you like to the bowl.  Fragrant and tasty.

BBQ Pork - Flame grilled marinated pork neck - $15.90

My friend had this pork dish which was served with sweet chilli sauce and jasmine rice.  She really enjoyed it and said she would order it again.  I thought it looked a bit dry but I think that is more to do with my average photography skills than the actual dish!

Tom Yum Noodle - $10.90
And finally on a cool day I ordered the Tom Yum Noodle which is described as soup noodles with vegetables, tomato, lime leaf and chicken (you can also chose beef or seafood). This was my least favourite dish though there was nothing wrong with it - it just wasn't quite what I was expecting.  But having said that it was a very generous serve and great value for money.  I struggled to finish the bowl and it was packed full of noodles and vegetables.  I just felt the flavour of the broth was missing something. 

Maybe I should have ordered the Pho!!

Pud Thai Vs. Pho on Urbanspoon

Sunday, June 16, 2013


Just a quick little note to explain my lack of posting lately. I am currently in Europe for six weeks and before that was just slightly manic getting ready for my trip, battling a bout of bronchitis and finishing up things at work!

My holiday has a number of different, equally exciting, parts. Some time in beautiful Paris, a quick trip to vibrant Barcelona then back to Paris to join the Cruise for Mates Avalon river cruise through France. The final part of my trip will be two weeks in Provence staying in a gorgeous villa. I hope to do some posts whilst I am here though the Wifi situation will influence that somewhat. You can also now follow me on Instagram - a link is on the top right of this page. 

Au revoir. 

Monday, April 29, 2013

Fig, Goat's Cheese and Prosciutto

My sister's friend passed on this recipe a few months ago and I have been obsessed with it ever since.  This is a simple, delicious appetiser.  Just three beautiful ingredients - very easy and tasty. 

Pre heat your oven to 180 degrees.  Trim and halve your figs. 

Dollop on a generous amount of goat's cheese.

Wrap the fig and cheese in a thin slice of prosciutto.  I generally halve the prosciutto slices - half is usually wide enough.

Place the wrapped figs on a tray lined with baking paper and bake for 15-20 minutes. 

The end result - soft gooey figs, creamy cheese and crisp prosciutto. An impressive, delicious outcome for little effort.


Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Mornington Peninsula

As I have mentioned before it doesn't feel like summer if I don't spend some time on the Mornington Peninsula.  This year a relaxing break included lots of time sitting on the deck doing this..

and watching this..

and gazing at this..

We visited some wineries for tastings but as the designated driver I was more interested in the gorgeous vineyard surrounds.

At Paringa Estate these cute guys completely captivated my attention as I watched them waddle around.

The magnificent view from Tuck's Ridge

And lastly the view from Red Hill Estate winery.  It was a very hot day so I was standing in the cool shade.  Love the glimpse of the ocean in the distance.

So, lots of clear blue skies, endless ocean, gorgeous views and sunsets.  And, of course, some yummy food!


Cafe Jett
197 Point Nepean Road
Dromana 3936

Cafe Jett is opposite the beach at Dromana not far from Pier StreetOffering the usual cafe fare of burgers, wraps and all day breakfast we all enjoyed our meals however I think my Dukkah toast was the pick of the bunch.  Delicious!


That's beetroot on (and in) the ciabatta ;)

Cafe Jett on Urbanspoon

173 Point Nepean Road
Dromana 3936

A little bit further down the road is L'Aqua.  There was a large group of us lunching at L'Aqua and so we got to try a wide selection of the menu.  Everyone enjoyed their meals, though I found my Thai prawn salad to be a bit bland and boring.  I didn't write down what everyone had but the pictures are pretty self explanitory.


One of our group got the "Stonegrill".  The super hot stone is delivered to the table with your choice of salmon or meat and then you cook it yourself. One way of making sure your meat or fish is cooked to your liking!

L'Aqua on Urbanspoon

So, that concludes my 2013 Mornington Peninsula post.  I hope you enjoyed it as much as I enjoyed reliving my summer holiday :)