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pindarrrrrrrrrrr

Back in Canada, autumn is my favourite time of year and so October was my favourite month. Mostly because of Halloween. I love the colours and the smells, the cool weather, the abundance of pumpkin and dressing up like a fool in order to get candy from strangers. That’s totally normal.

However, the tables have turned… or rather the seasons. Because now Spring is in October, the leaves are not turning, the pumpkin is not aplenty and strangers have stopped giving me candy. It’s a dilemma. None of these things are happening, HOWEVER, the days are warmer, the sun is ridiculously bright, the air smells of eucalyptus and the ocean is calling, nay, it is screaming my name. So… you’ll have to excuse me as I have a date with the coast this weekend. We’re going to frolic, we’re going to knock down each other’s sand castles and we’re going to make each other’s hair unbearably tangley with salty sea breeze.

So while I do that, you can take a gander at some photos from a  hike that Sean and I did a couple weeks ago.

We took a train to a top secret location (you have to request the stop upon boarding) and then we hiked for two hours to Pindar cave.

We slept in the CAVE!

We set up our tent and we were visited by rats in the night. They’re weren’t gross though and I only saw their tails. buttt I could hear them trying to chew through our packs.

We took pictures of the crazy rocks.

We made fires and we cooked soup and made garlic bread.

We also drank cider.

Then we hiked back and flagged down a train.

And we stopped for coffee and some communal knitting in Brooklyn. Sean was mad that his fingers didn’t fit through the cappuccino cup handle.

Anyway, that was that. It was a really lovely camping trip.
Coming soon: The breakfast that fueled us for the hike to Pindar! 🙂

And after that, photos from my date with the coast.

xxx

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Jurassic Park

Summer is coming! I know this because over the weekend we sprang forward. The sun now sets at 7… and getting later everyday. Too bad I’m abnormally tired. I feel jet lagged. It was only one hour though… I don’t… I don’t understand.

Anyhoo, with warm weather and longer days comes summer fun! Swimming, hiking, camping, and lunches on the dock!

A couple weeks ago Sean and I took a hike in Kuringai Chase National Park. We hiked to Resolute beach and back. I spent about an hour numbing my feet in the freezing cold waters and taking pictures of rocks and yachts. The water was paradise blue. Had it been even a degree warmer, I woulda jumped in.

By the time I spotted the wallaby, he was hopping away down the beach. I only saw a bum. Lame.

But then we spotted this GINORMOUS yellow-bellied black snake. By far the largest snake I have ever seen in real life. Not poisonous, but still scary. He’s a python so he’ll strangle his prey. This one was about 1.5-2m long. AHHH.

And though it may be hard to see in this picture… I also saw a dinosaur. I know you think they’re extinct, however -little known fact, they do still exist in the wild bush of Australia. My knowledge of dinosaurs is obviously extensive, as I was an avid watched of The Jurassic Park trilogy when I was young. True, the first one made me scream in terror and drop my extra cheese pizza all over my lap, but I soon ‘grew up’ and was able to watch the following two movies while experiencing only minor panic attacks.

Side track. Anyway, from my studies of  the ‘Saurs I know this to be a compsognathus. Der.

After experiencing the Jurassic period first hand, Sean and I found our way back to an old favourite. A lovely restaurant on the dock at Church Point.

His and her post-hike refreshments.

Kuringai never ceases to impress me. 🙂

Next week? Camping in a cave = Awesome Sauce.

In other food news, I have a granola recipe coming up that is delishhhhhhhhh! Check back soon!

xxx

 

 

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carrot fingers

Do you know what my all-time favourite vegetable is?

I think if you had a look at my palms and the soles of my feet you might be able to guess. You see… I eat a lot of this vegetable. Quite a lot. And it has a tendency to give my skin an orangey glow. It seems that this vegetable is quite high beta-carotene, and since I eat so much, my body has an overload of it and so I store that extra beta-carotene in my skin! And thus it turns yellowy-orange.

Funny Story: I was meeting a friend a couple months ago and as I was walking up to her to with open arms she started laughing. She grabbed my hands and exclaimed: ‘You used fake tan and forgot to wash your hands after… DIDN’T YOU!?’

Awkward.

Have you figured it out yet? My favourite veggie? That contains lots of CAROT-ene?
Carrots!
Yum. Raw, with hummus, roasted. It doesn’t matter! I’ll take them anyway. anytime.

So let’s talk breakfast…

Maybe you’d fancy some Carrot muffins? Perfect.

Carrot Muffins
Adapted from this recipe

2 c. spelt flour
3 tbsp sugar
1.5 tsp all spice
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 c. raisins

2 tbsp chia seeds
1/2 c. non-dairy milk
1 c. shredded carrot
1.5 tsp vanilla
1/4 c. maple syrup
1 c. unsweetened applesauce
1/4 c. coconut oil

Instructions

Preheat oven to 375F. Mix together dry ingredients. Mix together wet ingredients. Add the wet to the dry and mix until combined.

Bake at for 25-27 in a lined muffin tin!

Serve with a some tofu-cream cheese (cause then its more like carrot cake. aka the best dessert ever.)

Enjoy a year round tan! With NO skin cancer! YAY!

ps. Did you ever see that youtube video called ‘salad fingers?’ Jeeez. if not, don’t look it up. Salad fingers haunts me.

xxx

And just for fun, a sneak peek at some of the hotness I’ve been photographing lately.

boom!

more to come…

x

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Filed under Adventures in Australia, Breakfast, Muffins

puppies, pimm’s, and popsicles

It’s not quite summer in Australia. However I’ve been hoarding some summer recipes for the last couple months, so when I was in Toronto very unexpectedly last week and it was 30+ degrees outside, I whipped out my warm weather recipes and made it happen.

In the form of popsicles.

and cocktails!

Yum…

What’s better than a Saturday afternoon cocktail? followed by bbq’d corn and a boozey popsicle?

Maybe lounging in the sun with your puppy dog?

lucy

Yeah. Well nothing beats that…

Meet Lucy. The most photographed dog in history.

dog

She enjoys napping on the counter, drinking from my water glass and sharing popsicles. (the non-boozey kind)

She works the camera.

Sometimes I wondering if this dog thinks I have a camera for a face.

ANYWAY…cocktails and popsicles!

Pimm’s is best paired with painted toe nails and lounging in muskoka chairs.

If you haven’t tried this cocktail, then you haven’t sipped summer from a glass. It’s a must do.

Pimm’s Cocktail:

Pimm’s

Sparkling lemonade

Cucumber

Strawberries

Orange

Lemon

Mint

Slice all the fruit and veggies and put them in a jug.

Add 1 part Pimm’s and 2 parts lemonade. (although I prefer a 1:1 ratio… haha or maybe 1: 1.5 if you want to make it past 1 cocktail. :P)

Add some mint, stir it up, serve over ice and drink. Crazy straws are also encouraged.

On to the ‘sicles!

Pina colada!

Pina Colada Popsicles!?

Ohhhhh my goodness, so delicious.

Put this on your to-do list as well. You should totally make these. You should also check out this food blog, cause her recipes are delightful! Pina Colada Popsicles! The only alteration I made to her recipe was using Maple Syrup instead of sugar. I’m Canandian. This is what I do.

the fam (and our kick ass backyard)

Oh sweet summer. It was nice to have a little bit of sun on my shoulders and ice coffee in my cup.

It was short and very sweet. I miss you Toronto! I’ll try and visit soon. 😦

stay cool doggie.

xxx

ps. MIYOSHI! LOOK! I did it again! (the bee)

bzzz

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Cocktails, Desserts

it’s the JAM PLAN. and the queen loves it!

Did you know that I’m British?

Yeah, I’m just being real with you.


Me and the queen, we’re buds. Kate and I, (Middleton of course) we go way back. Sometimes she comes over for tea and scones and we discuss British things… like scones. and… the queen. And her excess of hats!

Are those the only British things I know? hmmm…


I’m not actually English at all, but I didn’t have a Scottish Flag tea towel on hand. Sooo…


I save my fine china for the Royals, obviously. And I’m also speaking to them about adopting a vegan diet. I think this is what British people do. We bake scones and clean our houses in case the queen comes for tea.

And when she does come,  (because she will) we serve her homemade scones, with homemade jam and whipped coconut cream. Totally vegan. and the queen is PUMPED about it.

Pip pip. Cheerio.

You know my scone recipe already. So just sub the cranberries for raspberries! It’s your call!

Jam though… JAM is a new addition.

It’s the Jam Plan!

20 minute JAM PLAN!

Strawberry/Raspberry Jam
(Adapted from OhSheGlows)

3 c. of strawberries and raspberries (I used a combo of fresh and frozen)

1.5 tbsp. chia seeds

2 tbsp. maple syrup

boiling

Bring the maple syrup and fruit to a boil in a saucepan. Stir frequently because the fruit will burn/stick to the pan. Allow it to simmer for 5-10 minutes and then add the chia seeds. Allow mixture to simmer and firm up for about 15 minutes. Keep stirring!

Put the jam in your finest china bowls and wait for the queen.

If you make the jam and scones, she will come.

xxx

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Filed under Adventures in Australia, Breakfast

broke into the old apartment…

This is where we used to live…

42 steps from the street.

So this is the old apartment. And for the record, I did not break into it. Come on… BNL references anyone? YES! (My next post is going to be pictures of ‘me in grade nine’… get it?) No? You DIDN’T used to stalk Ed Robertson? Well this is awkward…

Back to the apartment.

I don’t think I ever posted proper picture of it. I made sure to take some before we started packing up.

It was our first apartment together.

It was my first apartment period.

It was my first home that didn’t also house my parents.

It was the first home I ever paid money to live in.

It was a first. That’s for sure.

why did you paint the walls?

It was cozy. Not small.

It was compact. Not cramped.

It was New York-sized. Yes. How chic.

It was a studio. A bachelor. It was a badass place to dwell.

why did you keep the dish rack?

It had water ‘glimpses’… if you stood in the bedroom and viewed them through the mirrored wall, at an angle, and through the neighbour’s balcony.

It took about 30 minutes to clean from top to bottom.

It was centrally located.

It was perfect, with all its imperfections. I loved it.

this is where we used to live…

But we’ve moved. For many reasons. Maybe we do need a little more space. Maybe a wall here and there isn’t such a bad thing. Maybe a kitchen with a four element stove top and a full sized fridge isn’t so bad.

Maybe we don’t have any water glimpses… but we DO have a cockatoo that helps us make breakfast.

duncan

Scratch that, we have four.

the birdies!

They’re determined. And a wee bit cheeky.

They reach for crumpets and tomatoes on the windowsill. They jut out with beaks with such confidence and each time are surprised to discover a magical invisible force field hindering them from reaching the food. It is of course, the window. But that doesn’t deter them.

If at first you don’t succeed…

baaaaaaaaahahhahaha

We were greeted by only one, but he soon invited his posse. Anyway, we named him Duncan, he is the feistiest.

the duncs.

They are loud and they are bold. I love them already.

Recipes from the new kitchen to come once I sort my internet out… I may or may not be sitting in an outdoor mall in the rain taking advantage of free wi-fi in order to post this.

Ahaha. May or may not.

And I may or may not be going home to continue watching season one of The OC. Which may or may not belong to my boyfriend. Say. word.

I think we belong together.

Stay Jazzy.

xxx

(And stay warm. and dry. Will this rain ever stop?)

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all the answers to life in one small serving of flour and sugar

Life is weird. Obviously.

Have you even had those moments where your brain stops for a second… and it says ‘Wait a tick… what the hell is this?’

And ‘this’ is not referring to any specific activity, or event. It’s not an object, or a feeling… it’s just life. What the hell is it? Honestly.

I have those moments. Riding the subway to school, walking along a street in the sunshine, sitting on my couch writing a blog.

I look at my hands and I think they look so weird.

Everything looks weird.

What’s the point of all… this?

I think about my stress and it seems so inconsequential.

What is it? What does it alllllll mean… why am I worried about my job? Why is it necessary for me to do the laundry right now? Why do I have these extremities? How did I get on a piece of machinery that somehow propelled itself into the air and carried me across the planet? Why do I sometimes scratch an itch… and then feel it in another part of my body? And for the love of god, why does scratching an itch feel sooo good?

It just makes no sense to me. Why?

I don’t mean to get deep and philosophical. I have no intentions of figuring it all out… but it makes ya wonder. It’s makes ya wonder and then in makes you feel a bit queasy.

So that’s when I make scones. When I feel like there is nothing else to do, cause honestly, what’s better than making scones?

Another deep and philosophical question. The difference here is that I know the answer to this one. Nothing. There is nothing better than making scones. And when you think about it, in the GRAND scheme of this ridiculous ‘life’ caper we have going on… aren’t scones just about as important as anything else?

so so delish

And just to clarify, making scones implies you eat them also.

Boom.

cranberries!

Lemon-cranberry Scones

My usual is date scones, but sometimes life (or my mom) just begs for a little something lighter. And tangier.

3 c. flour

2 tbsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1/4 c. -1/2 c. raw sugar

1/3 c. coconut oil

1 1/4 c. non-dairy milk

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 c. frozen cranberries

zest of 1 lemon

lemon sugar

Mix the lemon zest with the raw sugar to infuse it with lemony goodness. I think this helps to spread the lemon flavour.

Mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Create a well for the wet ingredients and pour them in. mix gently until just combined and fold in the cranberries. Scoop 1/4 c. of batter onto a baking sheet per scone.

Bake for 15ish minutes on 400*C.

Eat them and then forget about all of life’s unanswered questions. And stop looking at your hands, because apart from all those hangnails… they are perfectly un-weird.

xxx

perfection

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Filed under Adventures in Australia, Breads, Muffins