Thursday, 15 September 2011

Bits and pieces

Yes – you’re right – we DO need some new posts! I will rectify this soon, I promise. Meanwhile, I have eaten out but only at places I have previously reviewed, and whose standards haven’t changed from last time I ate there. Or at places in Melbourne, where, realistically, no one from here, is likely to go in the foreseeable future.

Dinner at Orizuru Sushi Bar (at Mures) was, once again, fine. We shared a Bento Box, small maki platter and a mains tempura.

Lunch with Christina at Taste Café at Bahai Centre the other day, again, was fabulous. This little treasure of a place quietly ticks along, producing fine food at a reasonable price. It is my most highly recommended lunch spot in Hobart, by the way. Christina had the wallaby pie, and I had the scallops. Both were to-die-for in gorgeousness.

Drinks at the Atrium Bar were perfect, in a relaxing and picturesque environment, prior to eating at Orizuru.

Lunched last week in Melbourne at a Thai restaurant in Lygon Street, called Lemongrass. We had eaten dinner there the week before, but I had bowed to peer group pressure and let others order the food, so when the food arrived with the dishes ranging in taste and flavour from ordinary to very disappointing, I was inclined not to return there.
We did, however, luckily, and had a gorgeous lunch, with food selected which we knew well couldn’t be screwed up! Their flame grilled chicken satay with accompanying sauce was gorgeous; their roti (?? – on a Thai menu? Go figure!) and peanut sauce (totally different to the satay sauce) was mouthwatering; the prawn and holy basil dish outstanding, and the green papaya salad ditto.

The evening meal at a middle eastern restaurant was pretty average, with the service being nearly non-existent. We selected a banquet menu, for ease of ordering and serving, but found the flavours and cooking expertise way too boring and predictable, and quite frankly, not all that tasty. I make a lot of hummus, baba ganoush, tabbouleh etc at home (especially since I have had my Thermomix). I love that style of food and have always patronized restaurants who offer it. So I recognized a halfhearted attempt at middle eastern food when I saw and tasted it! Staff were way too busy servicing the outside tables of youngsters who all were smoking hookahs as prepared and started off by restaurant staff. Thought to myself, “That would NEVER happen in Hobart”!

Meanwhile I am lining up some new places to eat out at while I save up my money. This frequent dining out is costly, you know!
Posted on by Rita


rockoyster said...


Rita said...

Am feeling fine thanks rockoyster! x

Christina said...

Our lunch at Taste Cafe was beautiful!
My Wallaby Pie was in a pastry case made with creme fraiche and served on a wonderful bed of sweet capsicum and onion. I can still taste it!
Then Rita just FORCED me to eat one of her scallops served in the shell with mushrooms and a Pynegana cheese sauce, heaven in a shell!
My wonder at the winter vegetable salad was well deserved. Every vegie could be tasted and enjoyed. A truly beautiful dish.
Rita you neglected to mention that tiny (he he he) elderberry sorbet that you enjoyed so much.
So I sat in the sun today and enjoyed my Rhu Bru and remembered our lovely meal.
Too hard to decide on a meal as every single item on the menu sounded wonderful.... so wanted to try the potato and pynegana cheese soup, but another table did and the smell was enough to make me wish I had!
So coming from me.... the wine queen, even though Taste doesn't serve alcohol, I couldn't recommend this beautiful, peaceful, calming cafe any higher.
Rita thank you for the invite and I enjoyed our lunch immensely.

Rita said...

Thank god you added those salient details Christina! My medication works well on my heart but not on my memory! You're correct - the meal WAS beautiful, the soup smelled gorgeous, and the pastry was indeed creme fraiche (I couldn't remember for the life of me when I wrote the post!!). We need to do that again.

Vineyard Paul said...

I would love to hear more about your Thermomix. Any good, what does it do/not do? What implements does it replace?

And the most important question, Do I have to have one?

Rita said...

Hey Vineyard Paul - at first I thought your comment was from a friend, who was taking the piss. Then I tracked you on Twitter and found you're not a friend wanting to take the I will now publicly confess I have just this week decided to be a Thermomix demonstrator, so you might say I have a vested interest in answering your comment. However the only reason I decided to do the demonstrating is because:
*I have had my TM for around a year and used it heaps
*I love it, and everything it can do (ie processes food, makes a sorbet, cooks food, steams food etc)
*It makes impressive food quickly
*I could never 'con' people into buying something so expensive without believing it is a worthwhile investment
*I believe everyone should have one

It replaces your food processor, an ice cream maker, a bread maker, an electric coffee grinder, a spice mill, beaters, a stick blender, a steamer, milkshake maker, juicer, rice cooker and other things I can't think of right now.

It means the food you make is only as healthy and nurtitious as what you buy, so by buying good ingredients, you get good food from the TM.

I used to buy stock cubes, but now make my own (vegetarian) stock mix in the TM, made out of veges I have bought &/or grown, and which I add to all soups, casseroles and sauces.

It doesn't shred or grate, for instance, carrot. I use my food processor for bulk carrot grating, but it chops things. There is a standard TM recipe for a beetroot salad which I love , and make often. The raw beetroot and other ingredients are chopped, as opposed to sliced or grated.

It makes an instant hummus for visitors who pop in (as long as you have a can of chickpeas and some tahini in your cupboard), as well as other great easy dips. It minces meat/chicken, heats milk, soups etc, sautes onion/garlic, makes a great roasted dry spice mix that you can tailor to your own tastes (I love the garam masala mix), kneads dough for bread or rolls, and makes great butter in minutes, to which you can then add garlic or fresh herbs to have your own frozen butters. It also makes a mean daiquiri, margarita, lassi, milkshake etc too.

It makes a great tomato sauce, and sweet chilli dipping sauce, as well as arrabiata pasta sauce. You can also cook rice in it, and make your own Thai red curry paste.

With some product training, I will be confident demonstrating my TM to people outside my kitchen!

lemon curd said...

Sorry, jumping in on the bandwagon!
We've had our TM for a couple of years now, and are so happy with it. For starters it lives on our kitchen bench, never goes away into the cupboard. I use it for prep work (peeling a whole heap of garlic - yes it peels garlic! chopping onions etc), and make a heap of pasta sauces that I can freeze with it.
I even made seafood stock paste with left over prawn heads over christmas which lives in the fridge - a great flavour addtion to so many things.
We use it a lot to make sorbets for dinner parties, the worlds best custard (no nasty additives here, simply vanilla, egg, corn flour and milk!), bread and heaps of curry pastes.
Check out for some great recipes, but also lots of helpful advice if you're thinking of making the purchase. It will last you a lifetime - a mutual friend still has one that dates back to the late 80's that has been used its whole life in a commercial kitchen!
Going now - before it really sounds like we're forcing you to drink the cool aid....!

Hospo Old-timer said...

Hey Rita
Found it interesting yesterday there were two apprentice competitions going on at the same time in Hobart. Workskills Regional Comp run by Peter Henderson at Drysdale and an ACF one run out at Guilford Young College. Both I understand had relatively poor turnouts. Funny if these were run on different days and perhaps a week apart there would have been more competitors at each event. I wish people in this city/ state would talk to each other when organising events that benefit the Hospo industry and its apprentices.