Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Switzerland Sky

It is a generally accepted idea that everybody has a favourite colour. Therefore it must logically follow that everybody has seen that colour before, at some point.

I hadn't, until this morning.

When I was nine years old, my mum bought a house. We moved in over the summer and started doing simple renovations. First, we replaced the sad-looking brown carpets with clean white tiles. Next, we wanted to paint the walls. To start fresh.

"What colour are you thinking of, dear?"
"It's hard to explain, mum."
"What do you mean?"
"I don't want just one colour. I want a colour made up of many colours."
"Well it's a bit difficult to do that. Can't you just choose from what we have here in the booklet?"
"But it's not here."

Anthony had already picked the paint he wanted: a dark, serious blue. But I remember spending hours poring over pamphlets from the hardware store containing rainbows of swatches, ripples of tiny coloured squares that went from jet black to emerald green to butter yellow to pure white. I would run my finger over the purpley-bluey-pinkey section if there was one, but could never find exactly what I had in mind. I settled for a light shade of lavender in the end.

I am now twenty-two years old. I painted my room thirteen years ago. And this morning, as the plane was flying away from Paris over Switzerland, I turned away from my movie so I could look out the window.

There, in front of me, was the colour I had wanted.

Laid out over the earth was the exact hue of purple I'd imagined: fresh, light and so alive that you could almost hear it breathing. It melted into a soft, baby blue, the colours dissolving so perfectly that your eyes would get lost in them. Then, the best part: a layer of rose petal pink that sighed along the curve of the earth, touching both ends of the sky with its fingertips. I sat with my forrid against the freezing glass, mesmerized, drinking it, filling my eyes with it.

Too often, we let others convince us that what we see in our mind can never exist.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

"What do you desire?"

I have been so busy over the past 12 months, travelling non-stop, not to mention the small issue of trying to survive the final gruelling years of my law degree in Australia. I haven't had time to devote to my blog, which makes me sad, but I know the time will come around again when I'll be able to pour more of my time and energy into my passion for food. Until then, I have to focus on my priorities.

That being said, I will post something up on here once in a blue moon when I feel it is particularly awesome or important. This is one of those times.

The comic below is based on a well-known YouTube video of Alan Watts delivering a speech. I watched this video a few years ago in my early years of university, and found it so moving that you could say that it changed my life.

It was a combination of that video, many mistakes, a lot of traveling and some amazing people I met along the way that made me realise that I don't want to be a lawyer. Not in the immediate future anyway. I've enjoyed learning to master words by studying law, learning how to argue, learning how to think critically. But my real passion is food.

I don't light up when I'm talking about Constitutional Law the way I do when I'm talking about a pastrami sandwich in New York. I don't burn with yearning when I flit through a law firm pamphlet, but I do when I flit through a Michelin Star restaurant's menu online. I don't see myself sitting at a desk for 10 hours a day, Monday to Friday, 48 weeks a year for the rest of my twenties. But I do have a dream of opening a café that serves the best brunch in town.

No, I won't make enough money to pay for a big house or a nice car. No, I don't know exactly how I'm going to achieve it. And no, I don't know if it will be successful or not. I'm 22 years old. I don't know much about anything really.

But I know what I love.

And as long as I know that, I think I'm going to be okay.









Disclaimer: Image is not mine, it was taken from here

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Guest Blogger: Jon's ultimate guide to Californian Wines

I am very proud to introduce this blog post - this is the first time I am featuring a guest blogger on Why yes, I do eat constantly! Most people barely want to be affiliated with me when I start taking photos of my steak at a restaurant. So this is all quite exciting for me.

Jon and I met in Perth two years ago when he was visiting Jeremy, who he met in Shanghai. With my Dory-esque memory, I don't remember everything we chatted about - but I do remember him being an incredible guitar player, extremely disciplined (he was in the Canadian Reserves) and thinking he was amazingly down-to-earth and easy going for a lawyer (he specialises in Intellectual Property). Oh, and he's a Certified Specialist of Wine. He sat an exam for his certification which basically tests how much of a badass you are with wine, covering Physiology of Taste, Wine Composition & Chemistry, Viticulture & Enology and Food & Wine pairing to name a few.


Figure 1: Photo hi-jacked from Jon's Facebook Page without permission

Jon recently did a 7-day trip through the Sonoma and Napa Valley in California, tasting 200 wines in 30 wineries. Naturally, when you've accomplished a feat like that, you want to share it with others - so he's done up a report on his adventure detailing every single freaking wine he tasted complete with a scoring system, some comments on each winery's decor, and his thoughts on joining wine clubs. Or, in his words, a report designed to be "a time-saving and professionally vetted resource for serious oenophiles who are contemplating a similar trip".

Here's a snippet:


To read the full report, click this link: http://bit.ly/napavalleywinereport

To contact Jon about his wine experience or any wine-related stuff, you can email him at jc1762@gmail.com.

Was lovely to hear from you Jon! Thank you for sharing your food experience with me, and I hope other people heading to California for wine tasting will find it useful. And on a final note... see you on Saturday!


Figure 2: What the fluke?

That's what I love about food: it connects people and keeps them connected across borders.

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Voyager Estate Sparkling Grape Juice

Sparkling Grape Juice
Voyager Estate

+61 8 9385 3133

As a professional Cadbury (glass and a half, that's all it takes), I am always on the look out for a non-alcoholic substitute that isn't Coke or a lemon lime bitters. I just may have found my answer. 


Figure 1: "Made from exceptional quality fruit" 


Figure 2: Food Blogger Perk #47 - surprise deliveries from wineries!

I was super delighted this month to receive an email from Voyager Estate in Margaret River, asking if I would like to try their Sparkling Grape Juice. My little present arrived on a Thursday morning, and I couldn't help but tear open both boxes right on my front doorstep. 


Figure 3: Red and white

I love the little story behind this product. If you read the back of the bottle, the label reads:

"What do you do when you are passionate about growing grapes and making wine, but don't drink alcohol? When faced with this conundrum, Voyager Estate founder, Michael Wright, created a drink he could truly love whilst still sampling the fruits of his labours - his own sparkling grape juice. And, believing that he might be onto something, we make sure there is enough to share with anyone with a sympathetic palate."


Figure 4: Date night

I cracked open a white one first (it's been freezing in Perth lately, it didn't even need chilling). It wasn't at all what I was expecting. It was crisp on the tongue, clean, and had lovely tones of apple and honey. Light and refreshing, I think it would be perfect to take in a basket to King's Park for a summertime picnic. 

The white grapes that Voyager Estate uses is machine-harvested at around 14 to 15 Baumé (280 to 300g/L sugar). Once harvested, the grapes are crushed, chilled and pressed immediately. After filtering and adjusting, the juice is put into tanks to be pressurised with carbon dioxide to fill the juice with bubbles. The juice is then bottled under pressure and passed through an in-line pasteuriser that will sterilise the product to ensure the long life of the finished grape juice. 


Figure 5: White Sparkling Grape Juice 


Figure 6: Colour

Then I cracked open the red one. When I poured it and the light came through it, it became this crazy fuschia colour before cascading into my glass, all pink and bubbles. Slightly denser texture than the white version, and flavours more like blackberry and lemon. 

The red grape juice is made the same way as the white, but the skins are left on the grapes for 6-8 hours after crushing to maximise the extraction of the red colour and make the finished product a soft, rosy pink. Out of the two, I probably preferred the white, which was lighter and tasted slightly less sweet to me. 


Figure 7: Red Sparkling Grape Juice

If I had to sum up this product in one sentence, it's be: "Soft drink for foodies". And if any foodies out there want to try it, I have two boxes of this stuff sitting in my living room, just waiting to be given away. 

Email me here if you'd like to take some off my hands! 

Monday, May 12, 2014

Pearl of Shelley

Pearl of Shelley
Shop 8, 17 Tribute St West
Shelley 6148

(08) 9384 8115



Figure 1: The Battleground

I get really grumpy towards exam time. Partially because I'm trying to cram 13 weeks worth of legal theory into a 7-day study week, but also, and most importantly, because I have less time to eat well. I'm a foodie and I eat like it - but when I'm stressed out and strapped for time, my diet quickly deteriorates into McDonalds, triple shot flat whites, Shin Ramen instant noodles and Arnotts Chocolate Coated Scotch Fingers.

But not this semester. 


Figure 2: Salvation 

I have recently discovered Menulog, an Online Takeaway website that lets you search your suburb, select a restaurant, choose your items and bada-bing-bada-boom your meal is delivered to your address. Menulog recently emailed me to offer a takeaway meal in exchange for a review, which I was more than happy to accept! No trawling through Google to find a restaurant that delivers, no leaving the house half way through study to find dinner, no walk of shame through a restaurant in your study outfit to grab your take-away. Let's face it guys. Nobody likes being seen in pyjama pants. 


Figure 3: Effort required - zero

On a Wednesday night, I ordered from Pearl of Shelley through Menulog, and exactly half an hour later, my doorbell rang (didn't even have to pay the delivery guy, it's all done online when you order) and I danced to the dinner table holding the bag of goodies I'd ordered for mum and I. I'd ordered a Mango Kulfi ($4.5) for dessert but I ate it first, because life is too short. Kulfi is an Indian kind of ice cream, but not ice cream - it's much more dense and creamier, so technically it's a 'frozen dairy-based dessert'. I just love the texture of kulfi, which can vary depending on where you go, but this one had squillions of little icicles in it that crackled and snapped, like a mango party in my mouth. 



Figure 4: Mango Kulfi


Figure 5: Naanandnaan

For dinner, I'd ordered Garlic Naan ($4) and Cheese Naan ($4.5) to have with some Lamb Korma ($14.9). Mum popped the breads under the grill for a bit to crisp them up, which gave the naan just the texture I like - doughy and dense, but crisp and crackly on the outside. The cheese naan had the added ooze factor with melted strings of cheese all through it, giving it the perfect moisture and flavour.


Figure 6: Lamb Korma 

I'd order the Lamb Korma again - it was mild, sweet, creamy, nutty and had sultanas in it which went perfectly with the lamb. Lamb korma is prepared by searing the lamb meat first then braising it at a low temperature for a long period of time to prevent it from toughening. Our lamb was cooked perfectly - really lovely and tender. Gathered into a little mouthful between some cheese naan and mango chutney smeared on top, it was just delicious. Not bad for a Thursday night meal, not bad at all. 


Figure 7: Baa 


Figure 8: Menulog's user friendly interface

So if you're like me and have a hectic month coming up - maybe you should give Menulog a try - they're currently No. 1 for Online Takeaway in Australia with more and more people jumping on the bandwagon every day.

To check out some other Menulog restaurants in Bull Creek, click Bull Creek Take-Away Restaurants.