Eating my way through L.A.

IMG_3311 My first trip to America, junk food was always going to happen! Here are a few snaps from my recent trip to LA. Continue reading

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Healthy Coleslaw

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So, in continuing with my salad-loading, tonight I put together a healthy version of coleslaw. To be honest, I have never been a fan of the traditional mayonnaise-based coleslaw. I have always found it too heavy and creamy. However, I love red cabbage and wanted to create a way to eat it that I would enjoy. So, this version of coleslaw is delicious!

Here’s what’s in it:

2 Tbsp white wine vinegar

3 tbsp natural greek yogurt

1/8 red cabbage (3 cups)

1 carrot

2 Tbsp almonds, halved

salt and pepper

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Shred the red cabbage finely. Then, grate the carrot and place on top. (Note: instructions not really needed for this, but I included them anyway!)

Put the almonds in a pan and toast for a few minutes until golden. Then, mix the salt, white wine vinegar and yogurt together. Toss everything together and serve. This would also be lovely with some smoked salmon or trout layered on top.

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Vietnamese Chicken Salad

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As Summer is rolling around way too fast here in Australia, all I can think about is forcing as much salad into my body as possible, in preparation for swimmer weather! However, I don’t know about you guys, but I find the thought of salad for lunch and dinner terrifying, although necessary. It has to be done to shed those kilos that piled on unknowingly during Winter. It’s so hard to say goodbye to comfort food; to those big bowls of cheesy pasta, to curries, to bread… the list is seriously endless. But, do not fear, there is a solution! If I am going to force myself to eat endless amounts of salad, I am going to make sure that they are the most interesting and tasty salads possible. So, first on the list of interesting salads is my Vietnamese Chicken Salad. The mix of sweet, sour and spicy is sure to at least bring me to the dinner table.

So, here’s what’s in it:

1 Carrot

1/2 Bunch Coriander

1/4 Wombok

1 Cucumber

2 Red Chillies

1 Tbsp Roasted Almonds, halved

1 Chicken Breast

1/4 red onion

1 Tbsp Sesame Seeds

2 Tbsp Fish Sauce

2 tsp Sugar

2 Tbsp Lime Juice

2 Tbsp Rice Wine Vinegar

Slice All the vegetables finely and add to a large bowl.

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For the dressing, place fish sauce, sugar, 1/2 cup boiling water, lime juice, rice wine vinegar and chillies into a small bowl and stir.

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Coat the chicken breast in sesame seeds, salt and pepper and bake in a 200 degree oven for 25 minutes.

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Shred the chicken and leave to cool, then add the chicken as well as the dressing to the salad. Garnish with almonds and chilli.

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Dessert | Healthy Sticky Date & and Oat Cookies

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I have a huge sweet tooth, and as such have recently restricted myself to no junk food! But I have been craving dessert like crazy! So I developed this recipe for an extremely healthy, nutritious and filling cookie that will satisfy my sweet tooth.

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Dinner | Marinated Steak with Greek Salad and Lentils

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I will admit, this post is a rather boring one about a standard week night dinner. However, when it comes to cooking mid-week, all my ideas fly out the window and I am often stuck between a rock and a hard place, or should I say a Bolognese and a Stir-Fry. I have my ‘fall back’ recipes that are so boring to me, and are often not very healthy, but more so comfort food. So, in an effort to help me, and you dear reader, have a collection of ‘go-to’ recipes that are nutritious and tasty, i’ve decided to post a few week-night dinner recipes. These are nothing flashy and certainly are not ‘Instagram’ worthy, but they are simple, easy, healthy mid-week meals.

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Travel | Meal Times in Paris

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Obviously, meal times in Paris meant a mission to eat as many ‘typically french’ dishes as possible. It also meant a week of eating high fat, high carb, highly delicious food! After a long walk around the ground of Versailles, I was starving and my stomach was screaming for crepes.

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Travel | The French Breakfast

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Without a doubt, the most exciting thing about visiting Paris for me were the breakfasts. There is no hiding the fact that I am a complete breakfast LOVER, I never go a day without breakfast, and cannot function normally without a complete breakfast in my stomach. I was talking to my friend the other day about how when we have sleepovers with friends that aren’t crazy about breakfast, it’s devastating, and a trip to the local cafe on the way to the bus stop is crucial. She even said that she’s known to have a ‘full english’ on those days – I can definitely relate!

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Travel | The Best Sandwich in Paris

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As jet lag is slowly killing me, and getting back into my normal routine is looking to be impossible, it is that time that I begin to reminisce about my amazing Paris adventures that I had last week. I was incredibly blessed to escape the rush of Sydney life and re-kindle my love for one of my favourite cities in the world. But more importantly, to try some tasty French food. So sit tight and get ready for a few posts recounting my unforgettable food experiences in Paris.

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Travel | 20th Birthday Foodie Adventures

Travel | 20th Birthday Foodie Adventures

On Monday the 23rd June it was my 20th birthday! I was so excited to finally end my teenage years and begin the rest of my life. Sadly, my one uni exam for the semester fell on this day, right smack bang in the middle of MY day! It was the last thing I wanted to do on my birthday, however, I made a plan to have as much fun as possible before and after the dreaded exam.

I began my day with a trip to The Grounds of Alexandria with my Mum. I had always wanted to visit the grounds, so many of my friends had been there, and the pictures they had uploaded of the food looked incredible! So off we went, in an attempt to cross one restaurant off my long list of restaurants i’m dying to visit!

It was in a really strange location! I had never really explored Alexandria before, so driving through what seemed like an industrial area wasn’t exactly where I would expect to find a happening breakfast spot, and foodie destination! However, in amongst the factories we found a gem! We walked in to what looked like a country village, filled with a flower shop, gourmet grocery store, a bar and of course the cafe! It was such a cool little country escape in amongst industry and the city! There was a bit of a queue for a table, but we didn’t mind seeing as it gave us time to explore. As the waiter lead us too our seats, the vibrant atmosphere got me so excited! There were loads of people enjoying their meals, stands packed with freshly baked bread from their bakery onsite, bread and jam tasting, a dessert stand, there was just so much going on that I didn’t know where to look. There was such a fabulous vibe. I ordered the Brioche Brekky Burger with Polenta Chips and Mum ordered the Brekky Board. I also had their freshly squeezed watermelon and pineapple fruit juice. We were seated right near the kitchen, and I watched all the food being prepared and assembled. Everything looked incredible and made to so keen to come back and try the rest of the breakfast dishes!

The Brekky burger was so delicious! The Brioche was so soft, and surprisingly, the burger was quite light on my stomach.

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Later on in the day we went to a place called A Tavola for dinner. I had read reviews for this restaurant and decided to tick yet another restaurant off my long list of places to visit. I had heard about their freshly made pasta that they hang around the restaurant to dry before service, and as we walked in, my eyes were immediately drawn to the pasta drying on the racks. We were greeted with some freshly baked focaccia and chilli olive oil, which immediately excited me as it reminded me of a traditional european restaurant (not the stingy Australian versions where you pay extra for the bread). Dad also ordered an Italian red wine (not sure what it was called as Italian wines come in so many unfamiliar varieties) which was spectacular. I ordered the Pappardelle with Wagyu Ragu and so did my mum and dad. My sister ordered the Mushroom Ravioli with Truffle Sauce. Both dishes were incredible, the pasta cooked al dente which is always promising, and we were given such a generous serving of the hearty Ragu.

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For dessert, just for the sake of jamming one more foodie destination into one day, we went to Riva Reno on Crown st for Gelato. Riva Reno is an Italian gelato chain that has many stores in Italy, but a few in Australia as well. It is by far my favourite gelato in Australia, and is possibly better than the gelato I had in Italy. It has such a thick creamy texture, that it reminds me on eating Nutella. The gelato is kept in metal cylinders to keep it from being exposed to bacteria etc. but also because natural, authentic gelato doesn’t have any preservatives or nitrogen, and so cannot be piled up high on display as we find it here in Australia. To me it makes more sense to store the gelato this way! I would absolutely recommend visiting this place!

I had a fabulous birthday, even though I had an exam (notice I didn’t mention the exam in my recount of the day? It doesnt deserve a mention!)

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The Grounds of Alexandria: http://groundsroasters.com/

A Tavola, Bondi: http://www.atavola.com.au/bondi/

Riva Reno: http://www.rivareno.com/ita/

Dinner | Italian Poached Octopus

Italian Poached Octopus

A while ago we were out for dinner with a few of our favourite Italian friends. They were describing how they cook Octopus, and how it is one of the most delicious, must try dishes. I’ve always thought large Octopus to be to difficult to cook, and impossible to soften. But the words of a passionate Italian always linger, and before long, Mum and I had purchased our first Octopus.

Here’s what’s in it:
1 Octopus (about 1 kilo)
1 large bunch of parsley
1 long red chilli
2 garlic cloves
1 lemon
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
2 cups red wine
1 cup balsamic vinegar
2 litres water

Fill a large pot with water, balsamic vinegar and red wine. Bring to the boil, then place the Octopus in the pot, place the lid on, and reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer Octopus for 1 hour, until it becomes tender.

Chop the parley, chilli and garlic and add to a mixing bowl. Then add the olive oil and juice of 1 lemon. When the octopus is cooked and tender, slice into this pieces and immediately toss it with the prepared dressing. Serve with a tomato salad and fennel salad, or tossed through pasta.

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