Sunday, 25 February 2018

The Month That Was

As a former teacher, The Australia Day Long Weekend has always marked the end of the summer holidays (but unfortunately not Summer) and despite retiring the habit has stuck. Like many of you I find the lead up to Christmas a hectic time and it seems that each year it becomes more so. Consequently January has been a time to relax and regroup. It is not that I have been doing nothing but more going about things a little more slowly. So here is a snapshot of the the month that was...

In the garden. The colours of Summer, this year not as much red in the garden but plenty of yellow and orange.

An old favourite, this dahlia seems to flower for ages. 

At home with family. The joy of spending time with Oscar and introducing him to my passion.

Out and about.  My daily walk around the neighbourhood or around Lake Wendouree on my trip away.

Creative moments. Lots of altered papers for book making. Some stitching and 

a trip to Fibre Arts for a workshop with Lorie McCown which I wrote about in more detail in the previous post.

Happy times. A wedding for a long standing family friend. 

Sad times. A farewell to my Aunty Rey who sadly lost her long battle with illness. 

Some dining out. Pizza at El Toro, my go to quick meal when I do not want to cook.

A trip to a new vegan restaurant, Face-Plant This

A fun night at the Lorne Hotel. A pop up restaurant featuring Geoff Lindsay’s Crab Club.

Scaled back cooking, simple food. I didn’t give up cooking altogether, however, we worked our way through the casseroles, curries and other foods stashed away. Lots of guests but minimal effort meals and very little baking or dessert making.

The Australia Day BBQ lamb lunch served in a wrap

Easy cooked breakfasts,

Or something healthier 

Gnocchi from the freezer


Crumpets, these have become very popular.

And Stir fry, lots of these with steamed rice or noodles.

Ginger Beef with Broccolini and Beans
500 g thinly sliced steak
3 tablespoons soy sauce
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 small knob of ginger grated(1 tablespoon)
1 tablespoon oil

1/3 – 1/2 cup stock
1 teaspoon sesame oil


2 teaspoons cornflour, mixed to paste with a tablespoon of water

1 onion, sliced into thin wedges
250 g green beans
sliced and blanched/ cooked in microwave for 1 minute
1 bunch broccolini,
sliced and blanched/ cooked in microwave for 1 minute
1 large chilli, thinly sliced
½ bunch spring onions, thinly sliced

Combine beef, garlic, ginger, soy in a bowl and marinate. I like to refrigerate it overnight.
Heat pan/wok until very hot, add oil and then beef. Toss/stir for a minute or two until brown and nearly cooked. Remove to a clean bowl.
Add onions to hot pan, toss around and allow to cook a little then add chilli. Return beef to pan, add stock, bring the stir fry to the boil. Add beans and broccoli and toss together. Add the sesame oil and then spring onions.
To thicken sauce
Stir in cornflour paste and allow mixture to boil.

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