Saturday, December 31, 2011

Sunday, December 11, 2011

The Twenty-First Meredith Music Festival

Graveyard Train get the "The Boot"

As you might have noticed, I'm a music festival junkie (I've been to a fair few over the years!) - something about getting out of town, being in a crowd of people and listening to the bands you love, it's just brilliant. Anyway, this weekend marked the 21st birthday of the Meredith Music Festival so I thought I'd share one of my photos. It's a tiny snippet of a truly magical weekend, a phenomenon called "The Boot" whereby the audience raises one shoe in the air as a sign of appreciation for the band... immediately after this photo was taken my shoe was in the air too!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

White Rabbit Says

A friend of mine has some damn fine artwork up on Society6, including this gem:
I must start living by this.

Monday, December 5, 2011


You're probably aware by now of my slight obsession with Japan (have you seen my other blog?), so this recipe post shouldn't be a surprise. These are onigiri, which are Japanese rice balls. There's a neat little intro to them over here. おいしい!

I've adapted the recipe from a few places to come up with something that works for me. Now tested it out a fair few times so it's ready to be posted...

  • 2 cups sushi rice (I use SunRice brand)
  • 1 small brown onion
  • A handful of mushrooms (any kind will do; I use 4-5 button mushies)
  • 2-3 pickled gherkins (yep, the ones in a jar)
  • Small handful of frozen peas
  • 2ish tbsp Mirin
  • 1ish tbsp soy sauce
  • 1ish tbsp rice vinegar
  • Furikake to sprinkle on top (I use a vegetarian version. Cut nori sheets would work too, or no seasoning at all... they're still good)
Rice Preparation:
The full article on rice prep (including photos) is over here, but I cheat a little with the timing, and use a rice cooker (check the packet instructions if you don't have one).
  1. Rinse your rice like you've never rinsed rice before - put it all in a saucepan with running cold water, swishing with your fingers, then tipping out water and doing it again - over and over and over until the water runs clear.
  2. Set it aside in a strainer to drain for at least 30mins.
  3. Put it into your rice cooker (turned OFF) with 3 cups of cold water. Cover and leave to soak for at least 30mins.
  4. Turn ON the rice cooker and let it do its thing. Usually about 15mins but might vary.
  5. Turn OFF the rice cooker (i.e. don't leave on "keep warm" setting) and leave rice to cool for a few mins. Your rice is now ready to use.
Filling Preparation:
This is the bit I made up, but it works really well. There are some other filling ideas over here.
  1. Finely chop the onion, mushrooms, gherkins and pop into a small saucepan.
  2. Add the peas and sauces (mirin, soy and rice vinegar) then keep stirring until everything is warm and sauce has reduced a little (about 10mins).
  3. Take it off the heat and place in a small bowl, ready for serving.
Putting Together:
Someone else has already explained this better than I can, so go ahead and read their post then come back. In case the link ever disappears, here are the basic steps:
  1. Using a smallish bowl (8cm diameter or thereabouts), line it with Glad Wrap (i.e. cling film) so it overhangs the edge by quite a lot.
  2. Pop a pinch of salt in.
  3. Spoon in a good dollop of the cooked rice (almost a full cup, depending on how big you want your onigiri to be).
  4. Press down in the centre with a teaspoon so the rice gently spreads with a hole in the middle, but don't pierce through to the bottom.
  5. Spoon in 1-2 teaspoons of your filling.
  6. Gather the Glad Wrap and pull it out of the bowl so you can shape the ball, ideally so the rice encapsulates the filling in a triangular-ish shape.
  7. Gently unwrap the Glad Wrap and place onigiri on your plate.
  8. Sprinkle with furikake or just leave as is.
  9. Eat!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Marcel The Shell With Shoes On

Um. This is the cutest thing I've ever seen. Watch both.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

I Was Young

I've been yearning for new music recently, Shazam-ing songs left, right and centre, including this gem by Gossling. Incidentally, she's playing at the Northcote Social Club next Friday, with Jen Cloher too. Hmmm...

Friday, October 7, 2011

Things That Amaze Me

"I'm having one of those "it's an amazing world" moments. You know when you forget for a while then something makes you remember again? Yeah."
- me, just then, on Twitter.

Kinda just inspired myself to write this list! In no particular order...

Google Street View
Being able to take a virtual walk through a faraway city you've never been to. Google kindly provides some recommendations if you don't have a globe handy to spin and plant your finger.

You know the app that listens to a few seconds of a song and then tells you what it is?

I <3 my iPad & purple headphones!
My MacBook, iPhone, iPod, iPad... I know it's shallow to place so much appreciation on material objects, but they truly improve my life. Pretty much all of them. It seems particularly relevant today with the passing of Steve Jobs. What a brilliant man.

Google Goggles
Have you tried this? Take a photo of something and Google figures out what it is. Actually I suppose it's visual Shazam, huh? I know it's the second Google mention, but it's worth it. Trust me.

So I'm really saying, modern technology amazes me (among other things!). If you're reading this, you're in the 30 percent of the world population with access to the Internet, which is pretty damn amazing too. Consider yourself lucky.

In closing, I think everyone should listen to Louis CK's take on the modern world, just for a little perspective: "Everything's amazing, nobody's happy".

Goodnight x

Friday, September 23, 2011

High Noon

Street festivals are fun, aren't they? Something about the road being closed and a bunch of people in one place. This was the High Noon festival in Northcote last weekend. I spent most of the day just walking around, but something about it was just... nice.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Guilty pleasure

I'll admit it, I'm excited to hear new Florence & The Machine.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Oh, Japan.

I've just come back from Japan, and this has to be one of my favourite photos from the trip...


It was some kind of street art poster in Tokyo. I've also put up a few Fuji Rock photos on my Japan blog, and will probably update that with more tidbits over the next few weeks.

The only problem with going on an awesome holiday is that it makes you want another one. Immediately.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Blue Valentine

I watched Blue Valentine today - it tells the story of a relationship over a number of years, showing both its beauty and dysfunction. I'll warn you, it wasn't a rom-com but I really enjoyed it.

Friday, July 8, 2011


I'm rediscovering my inspiration, starting with this. I like the mood of the film, but for a better look at their clothes go to the Fall/Winter Collection 

Moonchild - E.C.H.O.E.S (FW 11-12) from moonchild on Vimeo.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Leave of Absence.

Not really posting anything here at the moment. Can't stop thinking about the impending trip back to Japan! Started another blog about that for me and my fellow travellers: Yeah Japan. Might get back to this one soon, not really sure.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Huevos Rancheros

  • 8 eggs
  • 8 plain tortillas
  • 1 can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 small brown onion, chopped
  • 1 small clove garlic, chopped
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp vegie salt (similar to vegie stock; use regular salt if unavailable)
  • Grated cheese (to taste)
  • Jalapenos (to taste)
  • Tabasco sauce (to taste)
  1. Fry the onion and garlic in a little oil until soft, then add the kidney beans, tomato, paprika and vegie salt.
  2. Cook until heated through then divide the mixture evenly between the tortillas.
  3. In the same pan, fry up the eggs.
  4. While they're cooking you can place the other ingredients on top of the bean mix (sliced avocado, jalapenos, grated cheese and tabasco).
  5. When the eggs are cooked, placed them on top of everything else.
Serves 4 hungry people, or 8 less hungry people.

One time when I was feeling particularly motivated I made the tortillas from scratch using this recipe (well worth the effort).

Thai Pumpkin Soup


  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 cups coconut milk
  • 1 tbsp red curry paste
  • 4 cups chopped pumpkin
  • 2 cups vegie stock
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/2 cup loosely packed Thai basil
  • 3 kaffir lime leaves, finely shredded


  1. In a saucepan, heat the vegetable oil with 1/2 cup of the coconut milk.
  2. Add curry paste and stir over low heat for 5 minutes.
  3. Add pumpkin and stock and simmer until pumpkin is cooked.
  4. Cool, then puree in blender (or with a Bamix) then transfer to a saucepan and season with sugar.
  5. Stir in Thai basil and remaining coconut milk, then divide between individual serving bowls and garnish with kaffir lime leaves.
Serves 4 as an entree.

Hot Spinach and Artichoke Bread Bowl Dip

This one's quite the party favourite. Having made it again for a party this weekend I thought I should record the recipe somewhere... this blog seems to have turned into my recipe archive so here it is!


  • 1 large cob loaf
  • 1 packet frozen chopped spinach, thawed but not hot
  • 1 jar artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup grated tasty cheese

Carve out the top of your cob loaf to make a well in the centre (careful not to cut through to the bottom). Put the loaf in a metal oven tray, with the leftover bread around the outside.

Combine all other ingredients in a saucepan and stir until well mixed and warmed through. Place this mixture into the well in the bread, and put the whole thing in a moderate oven for 15-20 minutes (the bread should be warm, but not too toasted).

Leftover dip can be put in a separate bowl to serve with corn chips or cracker biscuits. Turkish bread is great to serve with the bread bowl dip too.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Things I'm going to do when I go back to Japan

Go to Fuji Rock!

Visit Kyoto.

Eat at R Burger in Roppongi.

Hit up Golden Gai in Shinjuku (near where the photo was taken).

Pretend I'm Scarlett Johansson with a cocktail in the Park Hyatt bar.

Sing karaoke til sunrise.

And, if I don't run out of time, relax at an onsen.... aaah...

Fried Mozzarella Balls

  • About 3 cups vegetable oil (for deep frying)
  • 500g bocconcini cheese (drained & patted dry; roughly 2 small tubs)
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups plain, fine, dry breadcrumbs

  1. Triple coat the bocconcini by dipping in the eggs, then breadcrumbs, and repeating. Transfer to a bowl as you go (they can stack on top of each other).
  2. When all the cheese is battered, heat the oil in a heavy saucepan, being super careful not to let it spatter on you when it gets hot (this took about 5 minutes on high heat for me, until a breadcrumb dropped in will sizzle immediately).
  3. Fry in batches of 4-5 balls at a time, lowering in on a slotted spoon until golden brown, turning occasionally.
  4. Lift out and place on paper towel until ready to serve.

We also made a simple tomato sauce to go with these, by frying up 1/2 a brown onion (chopped), one clove garlic (crushed), 1-2 cups passata (tomato puree; a can of diced tomatoes would be fine too), and a splash of red wine.

Adapted from Epicurious iPhone App (credited to Gourmet, January 2009)

Tortilla (Spanish Omelette)

  • 1 onion
  • 275g small desiree potatoes
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 5 large eggs

  1. Peel and cut the onion in half, then thinly slice each half and separate the layers into half-moon shapes
  2. Thinly pare the potatoes using a potato peeler and slice them into thin rounds, working quickly so they don't brown
  3. Once sliced, rub in a clean tea towel so they're as dry as possible
  4. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large frypan
  5. When it's smoking hot, add the potatoes and onions
  6. Toss them around to coat in the oil, then reduce to the lowest heat, sprinkle with salt and pepper and put a lid on the pan
  7. Allow them to cook gently for 20 minutes or so, turning halfway and shaking the pan occasionally to stop them from browning (they should just stew in the oil).
  8. Meanwhile, break the eggs into a large bowl and lightly whisk with a fork (don't overmix)
  9. When the onions and potatoes are cooked, add them to the egg bowl
  10. Return the frypan to the heat, add remaining oil, then thoroughly mix the potatoes, eggs and onion before pouring the whole lot into the frypan
  11. Keep on the lowest heat and let cook slowly, uncovered, for 20-25 minutes
  12. Every now and then, draw the edge in gently with a palette knife to give it a nice rounded edge
  13. When there's virtually no liquid egg left on the surface, place a flat lid or plate over the pan and invert it, turning the pan over, then return pan to the heat and use the palette knife to transfer the omelette back into the pan.
  14. Let it cook for another 2 minutes, then turn off the heat and let it sit for another 5 minutes. It should be cooked through but still moist in the centre.
  15. Serve hot or cold, cut in wedges.

Adapted from Delia's How to Cook Book One (published by BBC Worldwide Publishing)

Roasted Tomato and Fennel Salad

This is the first in a series of recipes all made for my housemate's Spanish fiesta birthday dinner back in January. Unfortunately the photos aren't wonderful, but they're all I have!

  • 2 large fennel bulbs with fronds attached
  • 3/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 pints cherry tomatoes
  • Pinch of oregano (fresh or dried)
  • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 can cannellini beans

  1. Preheat oven to 200 Celcius.
  2. Chop enough fennel fronds to measure 1/2 cup and set aside.
  3. Trim fennel bulbs and cut in half vertically, then into 1/2 inch wide wedges.
  4. Heat oil in a large saucepan until very hot then add fennel wedges and sprinkle with a little salt.
  5. Cook until fennel begins to brown and soften, stirring occasionally; about 10-12 minutes.
  6. Add tomatoes, oregano, garlic and stir.
  7. Transfer to an ovenproof dish and put in the over for about 30 minutes, or until fennel and tomatoes are soft, stirring occasionally.
  8. Mix in cannellini beans and chopped fennel fronds, then bake for another 5 minutes to heat through.
  9. Serve warm or room temperature.
Adapted from Epicurious iPhone App (credited to Bon Appetit, August 2010)