20 September 2011

Review: Soda Cafe - North Beach

Andreas and I went for a drive along the coast a couple of weekends ago when the weather was perfect. Being pregnant I kept changing my mind about where we wanted to eat (I'm sure Andreas was ready to kill me!). We decided on The Wild Fig but luckily it was too busy and we u-turned back to a cafe I'd seen called Soda Cafe. It didn't really look like much from the road but in this case looks were definitely deceiving.

It looked more like a restaurant than a cafe and the prices did reflect this, not that I would consider what we ate to be overpriced but it wasn't the cheapest spot to go for lunch. When we got there it was pretty busy and the only spot they had was a table in the sun (yes please!).

Now forgive me because this was a couple of weeks ago and pregnancy brain is finally starting to get the better of me - 'the videos are in the dishwasher' is just one of the funnies that's come out of my mouth. The reason I'm asking for forgiveness is that I can't really recall what the names of the dishes were or the costs. (ok I've now uncovered the menu on their website so you can check that out...pregnant brain strikes again)

What I did like about the menu was that you could nominate a main size or entree size. Suprisingly this pregnant lady has been going for smaller servings lately (I've finally learnt that my eyes are too big for my stomach!). I order the squid and Andreas ordered the burger. My squid came with a corn salsa, fried jalepenos (oh my god I could have eaten an entire bowl of them they were that good) and sour cream. I finished the entire meal which rarely happens (especially if a salad type thing is involved). Andreas' burger came with chips, yummy, and whilst he wasn't 'raving' about the meal like me he did enjoy it. I ordered an iced-coffee which has become my beverage of choice and it was pretty strong but I enjoyed it. I can't really remember much about it so it obviously wasn't amazing but the meal definitely stood out.

So if you're looking for a yummy place to eat, great service (the waitresses were great, attentive without being pushy) a good view and don't mind spending a little extra I highly recommend the Soda Cafe.

Soda Cafe on Urbanspoon

16 September 2011

Exotic Sides

Peas are my 'something green', seeing as I'm always trying to get more veggies on our plate at dinner time. Unfortunately there are only so many peas you can heat up in the microwave and throw on the plate before you get bored so I turned to the good ol' internet to solve the problem. And solve the problem it did (plus added some extra greens in the form of spinach as well). In stepped the Vegeta website, because it was a side I didn't go as snap happy as I usually do so please appreciate the end result! This accompanied a steak and some yummy (if not very well done) potatoes.

  • Enough peas and spinach for however many people you need to feed (keep in mind the spinach will wilt)
  • 1tbsp butter
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1/2 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp lemon rind
  • 2 tsp fresh mint
  • 2 tsp vegetable stock powder
  • 50ml water (the recipe also suggested adding 30ml sherry too but I don't have that in the house!)
  1. Cook peas (follow instructions on back of packet) - unless you're really gourmet in which case why are you reading this blog!
  2. Melt the butter in a large pan (over medium heat) and throw in all the other ingredients (except the water) - stir them all together.
  3. Add the water and simmer for 10mins . Just before the end add the peas and stir.
This was definitely a yummy surprise in our house and I'd highly recommend it if you're looking for something to jazz up your sides. It's also pretty handy because most people will usually have most of the ingredients in their cupboards and if not it'd be easy to make substitutions.

12 September 2011

Review: Posh Pizza, Bicton

I thought I'd add some reviews in amongst the recipes and 'life' posts. I think it's nice to find out which places people are eating at and if it's worth handing over your well deserved moolah.

In the case of Posh Pizza it's definitely worth it. Saturdays have officially been declared a 'kitchen-free zone' in our house which means we'll either be gobbling up a take-away meal (and in this case Andreas will use the kitchen because he's a sucker for utensils, I on the other-hand am a pig haha) or dining out.

Now Posh Pizza is the perfect place for me because I am a pizza snob! I will shout that from rooftops because I think places like Dominoes and Pizza Hut etc... are disgusting. Sure they're a cheap option if you're having a big party or if you're hungover but I'd rather chip in some extra $$$ to eat something enjoyable.

They have shrunk their menu (which was unfortunate because some of the pizzas they used to have I would've loved to try) but it still contains really yummy pizza and on Saturday we settled on the oldie but goodie 'Hawaiian'. Andreas was concerned when he opened the box because it looked like a plain cheese pizza (he HATES cheese) but I pointed that they'd just put a lot of YUMMY cheese over the toppings and there definitely was enough ham and pineapple. I thought it tasted amazing, Andreas was on the fence but that didn't stop him from eating the majority of it.

It is still a staple takeaway option in our house - when I can let myself not think of all the calories and I recommend you check them out if you're in the area.

Posh Pizza Bicton on Urbanspoon

07 September 2011

Not Father's Day Pancakes

Sunday was Father's Day (here in Australia at least) - with my Dad down south, Hubby's dad in America and Pecan still in my belly (and staying that way until mid November little Miss or Mister!) we didn't do a special breakfast on Sunday. Instead I switched it up and cooked pancakes on Saturday because what else do you do when you wake up at 630am!?

I got this recipe off www.taste.com.au specifically: 

They were thick because of the self-raising flour and if you prefer thinner pancakes I'd use plain flour (all purpose) but I'm starting to enjoy the thicker American style of pancakes so I went with the self-raising. Also take note that you need to let the batter rest in the fridge for 30 minutes! This fed the two of us well (or 2.5 I should say), I'd double if you're planning on cooking for more than 2 hungry people.

  • 2 cups Self-Raising Flour
  • Pinch of Salt
  • 2 cups Milk (+ extra if required)
  • 2 eggs
  • 60g melted butter + extra 'grease' butter
Extras to Serve:
  • Strawberries
  • Maple Syrup
  • Sugar
  • Lemon



1. Sift flour & salt into a large bowl. Make a well in the centre (why does this remind me of childhood cooking!).
2. Whisk together milk & eggs. Add the milk mixture to the bowl (pouring into the well) and whisk constantly until a smooth batter forms.
3. Stir in the butter. Cover and put in the fridge for 30 minutes to rest.
4. Heat a large frypan over medium heat. Add a little bit of the 'grease' butter. Pour 1/3 cup of the mixture into the pan - or alternatively do what I did and pour in what you think is good!
5. Cook for 2-3 minutes (and don't worry the first one is always a dud) or until bubbles appear on the surface. Flip and then cook for 1-2 minutes
6. Transfer to a plate and cover with a tea-towel to keep warm. Repeat the above mentioned steps whilst your fellow pancake comrade or comrades set an awesome table for you!

01 September 2011

pH Risotto

Yes a little bit of a geeky title but I am married to an awesome nerd!

This risotto dish has been adapted from a recipe out of one of my Mum's amazing Italian cookbook's (I'll post the title here later). It always reminds me of family and definitely not of our 'catch and kill your own' nights - I'll save that for another post ha-ha.

This was an after work cook-up so there aren't as many photos and I did forget to get a photo of all the ingredients WHOOPS!

  • 6tbsp butter
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 4 cups boiling chicken stock
  • 2/3 cup white wine
  • 1.5 cups arborio rice
  • 2 cups frozen peas
  • 1+ cups spinach (as much as you want remember it will wilt)
  • Ham (I used 2 of those sandwhich packs which resulted in a lot of ham so you could probably just use 1 large pack)

1. Melt 4tbsp butter until foaming in a large pan and then add the onion stirring for roughly 3 minutes. (Make sure you've got your stock simmering away at this point!)
2. Add the rice and keep stirring until the grains start to burst then add the white wine. Stir until the wine is almost gone and then commence pouring the stock in little by little.*** Also add salt & pepper to taste.
3. Add frozen peas and spinach towards the end.
4. When the peas are pretty much done add the ham and remaining butter.
5. Serve with parmesan if like me you have a cheese hater in the family otherwise stir the parmesan in when you're putting in the ham and butter!

Serves 4 (or 2 people with lots of leftovers). It provided me with dinner and then lunch for the next 2 days which I always like.

***this is where I get angry at the book what is a little?! I wouldn't recommend just using a ladle which I did because it took me over an hour to cook this and after a long day at work that's not fun. I'd do 1/2 cup if not a full cup but entirely up to you and how much you love slaving over an oven.