Posts tagged For Him

Man Soup

I think that it’s entirely appropriate that my first bowl of  Man Soup was made by a man. I had a bad case of the cold, and was holed up under the covers feeling incredibly sorry for myself. I swear my life was flashing before my eyes, and I was absolutely starving, but wasn’t feeling up to cooking at all.

Enter the Man Soup – the modern man’s answer to sustenance, and bonus points if it’s made for a woman suffering from the man-cold!

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Mini Scotch Eggs

I think I have food ADD. I love food, but I crave the variety. Maybe it’s from growing up in an Asian culture – once you have dinners that involve a smorgasbord of different platters from which you can pick, you’ll never truly go back to single plate dining.

But I digress.

Ever since the Beak and Sons launch I attended the other week, I had sausages sitting in my fridge, and really, we all know I don’t just eat them straight if I had a choice. =)
Inspired by one of the canapés we had that night, I decided scotch eggs were in order.

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6 Things to Avoid When Planning Breakfast in Bed

Good breakfast..
Photo from Dorli Photography

With Mothers’ Day just around the corner, breakfasts in bed are the meal du jour! But hot food on an unstable surface? Excited kids jumping on the bed? Breakfast in bed can be a disaster waiting to happen. Here are 6 things to avoid when planning that perfect breakfast in bed!

1. Forget to feed everyone else

American Breakfast
Photo from Stephanie Kilgast

So you bring in a beautiful breakfast to Mom, on a hand-carved wooden tray for one. It gets placed over her lap, and she thanks everyone. She picks up a fork to begin eating…and everyone is staring at her hungrily awkwardly throughout the rest of the meal. Eating alone is not fun! Why not grab a picnic blanket and lay out breakfast for the whole family to have together?

2. Tall glassware

Photo from Susan Lucas Hoffman

Maybe you want to include a Mimosa to top off the breakfast tray, or maybe you want to garnish with a long stemmed rose in a tall water glass. Either way, tall glassware filled with liquid is your worst enemy when you’re mobile. Tall glassware = high centre of gravity. If you haven’t spilled it already while bringing the tray to Mom, it will spill while she’s having breakfast. Maybe use a low-ball glass instead? There’s also no shame in a covered coffee cup.

3. Biting off more than you can chew

242/365 smoke alarm - loud
Photo from Adrian Milliner

It’s not nice waking up to a smoke alarm going off. Don’t attempt a recipe for the first time on the morning of, with kids and pets underfoot. Not confident about making a hot meal? Yoghurt and fruit parfaits are absolutely acceptable, and something that anyone can throw together! She’ll appreciate something executed well more than an imminent disaster being created in the kitchen.

4. Give her flaky food

Wealthy Bakery Croissant 3-6-09 1
Photo from Steven Depolo

Buttery, flaky croissants may seem like a fantastic idea for breakfast in bed, but when all the little flakes fly out all over the bed, guess who’s the one who needs to clean it up? Besides, she’s the one who’s going to sleep in the crumbs later that night. And icing sugar? Yikes.

5. Serve in cookware

Baking in Cast Iron Skillet
Photo from Susy Morris

Individual ramekins of baked eggs look beautiful, and the frittata that is baked in the cast iron pan may look like something out of a cookbook, but it’s not a good idea to have scalding hot pans and bakeware while having breakfast in bed. See reason #2.

6. Stress out about it

Mother & daugther
Photo from Dimitris Papazimoulis

At the end of the day, Mom just wants to hang out and enjoy the company of her family. An easy, relaxed morning is so much more enjoyable than presenting a fabulous breakfast with a tense atmosphere.

So chill out, and feed yo’ momma! Or you know, mother of your children. I’m sure she’ll love it.

Beer Brined Chicken Wings

With Australia Day just round the corner, I have been racking my brain trying to create a recipe to serve up to my friends. After all, isn’t Australia Day all about kicking back in the sunshine with a cold beer in hand, barbecue sizzling away?

Then it hit me. How do you match the barbecue and the beer? Beer brined chicken wings, of course!
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Real A Gastropub, Hawaii


Gastropubs are not entirely a new beast of eatery, but it definitely ticks all the boxes for being trendy. It’s usually got creative, pub-styled food, and a large selection of gourmet and/or flavoured beers to go with this interesting grub. One such place that was recommended to me by my new found friends during my stay was the Real A Gastropub in Honolulu.

Their food menu consists of nearly 30 interesting dishes – some beer inspired – ranging in price from $3-$12. Three of us girls ordered 7 dishes, but that was mostly because we had piggy eyes – there was wayy too much food to finish and we had to take some of it home.

Fire pickles, $3

These babies are HOT HOT HOT!!! When we first ordered them, the waitress made very sure that we didn’t mistakenly think that we were ordering fried pickles, which would have been a complete disaster. But no, I saw the words ‘ghost chilli’ and I was sold. Ghost chillies, also known as Bhut Jolokia, rate at about 1,000,000 on the Scoville scale and are fiery to say the least. Slices of cucumber are pickled with these peppers, which are sliced open to let the capsaicin mingle with the rest of the ingredients. The result is a pickle which I couldn’t eat more than a piece at a time, all the while enjoying the intense prolonging burn in my mouth. This is not for the faint hearted, and I chickened out from eating the actual ghost chillies included in the pickle, as much as I wanted to try.


Beer Braised Brisket Poutine, $8

Have I mentioned how cheap I think all these dishes are. At $8, we got a whopping serving of fries, meat, gravy and cheese, topped with a sunny side up egg. While I love a good poutine, this particular dish didn’t quite cut it for me, and was a touch on the dull side.

Or maybe my tastebuds were just numb from the Fire Pickles.


Garlic Candied Bacon, $4

Bacon? Yes. Garlic? Double yes. Candied? GIVE IT TO ME NOWWWWWW. Just looking at the it I knew that the road to hell and heart disease had to be most definitely paved with candied bacon. This was sticky and salty all at once, and I especially appreciated how the waitress noticed that the bacon was darker than usual, and got the kitchen to prepare another serving for the table. This is everything that it promised to be – addictive and rich at the same time, and I had to take some home for breakfast the next morning.

FYI, it was just as delicious cold and out of the fridge as it was fresh from the kitchen.

Pipikaula Poke, $7

Pipikaula is, to my understanding, a sort of moist Hawaiin beef jerky. Lightly spiced, it’s mostly served as one of the sides to a main meal. Poke is a kind salad, usually made with raw fish, and seasoned. So what happens when you put the two together? A refreshing, funky, tangy mix that is perfect for a warm balmy night in Hawaii. One of my favourites, this one is also fantastic out of the fridge the next morning.

Chicken and Waffles, $7

A Southern classic, chicken and waffles usually consist of deep fried crispy chicken and warm fluffy-on-the-inside waffles, both drenched in a hearty serving of maple syrup. An epitome of the sweet salty tightrope that the South tread so well. This particular version unfortunately fell a little flat for me, especially when faced with all the other delicious food that this place had to offer.


Duck Confit ‘Corn Dog’, $7

I had no idea what to expect when I ordered this. Corn dog, one of the iconic foods of fairs and carnivals, usually consists of an ingredient, like a hot dog frankfurt, coated in a cornmeal batter and deep fried. On a stick. So I imagined that maybe they would just take a whole confit of duck leg and just coat it in batter and deep fry it.


The result was wayy more mind boggling than that. One bite into these delicious mounds on sticks revealed tender shreds of moist duck, and to be honest I’ve got no idea how they shaped them onto the sticks and battered them, because this literally fell apart in my mouth. And that Guinness mustard on the side? Genius. A must order dish.

Buffalo Fried Devilled Eggs, $7

These little bites were a great take on buffalo wings. Little crumbed devilled eggs were fragrant with tangy buffalo-wing aromas, and were topped with blue cheese ranch dressing and bits of celery to give you the essence of buffalo wings in a bite. Thoroughly enjoyable.

Besides all the food, there were also plenty of different beers to try and to choose from. Unfortunately, I’m not a drinking sort of girl, but I highly recommend the Real A Gastropub from a food perspective. Especially fun with friends, try to go after 11pm to take advantage of their late-night menu, which we ordered from.

We ate at:
Real A Gastropub
+1 (808) 596-2526
1020 Auahi Street, Building 1
Honolulu, HI 96814

REAL a gastropub on Urbanspoon

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Chur Burger, Surry Hills

I finally popped my Chur Burger cherry!! After being so incredibly tempted by all the instagram photos of people enjoying good burgers, I finally made it down there myself for a bit of that brioche burger bun action.

The first sight that greeted me when I walked in was a table of people, burgers open, picking out the filling!!! But why? Why would you not want to eat a glossy, buttery brioche bun?
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SPAM, aka shoulder pork and ham


Okay. I admit it. I really like SPAM. Short for Shoulder Pork and Ham, SPAM was introduced to me as ‘luncheon meat’. I fondly remember having fried, sliced luncheon meat on rice, with stir fried vegetables and sambal chilli on the side. It was a typical weekday after-school lunch that was amazingly comforting.

So when my challenge theme for this month was “Guilty Pleasures: Recipes Inspired By Cheez Whiz, Spam, Twinkies and Their Delicious Cousins”, I knew that I wanted to make another comforting meal, that’s maybe just a tad less guilty than my fond memories of SPAM.

Let’s have a look at their two components: Shoulder pork, and then ham. At about $5/kg, shoulder pork is one of the cheaper cuts of meat, with plenty of connective tissue running through it. Now usually, connective tissue means that this is a tougher cut of meat – hence the lower price. But when cooked low and slow, that connective tissue  (collagen) breaks down, and moistens every fibre of meat, making it juicy, tender, and absolutely heavenly.

What about the ham bit? Well, rather than using two cuts of meat, I was more inspired by my favourite ham glazes, which usually have maple and honey through it. Maybe a barbecue sauce with maple and honey?


Pulled Pork Shoulder with Crackling Chips, Maple and Honey Barbecue Sauce, and Slaw

Pulled Pork with Crackling

2kg whole shoulder of pork, skin on (bone in, if possible. My butcher only had deboned cuts)
1L Apple juice
50ml Apple cider
Fennel Seeds
Cumin Seeds
Dried Chilli
Ground Ginger
Whole head of garlic cloves, roughly crushed but unpeeled

Preheat the oven to 220C. Place the spices – I just included what I used, feel free to use whatever you want – in a mortar and pestle with salt and pepper and grind to a powder. Score the rind of the pork with a sharp knife, careful not to cut through to the meat. Rub the rind generously with salt, rubbing into the scores. Turn the shoulder over and pat the ground spices into the meat.

Place the meat into a roasting tray – try not to use one that’s too big or you’ll waste apple juice later on – and put into the middle rack of the oven for about 30 minutes, or until you see the crackling start to happen. Then take the tray out, and spoon out most of the fat. Place the roughly crushed garlic cloves into the bottom of the tray and fill it up halfway with apple juice. Cover it with foil, leaving a tiny corner open for steam to release, and place back into the oven. Turn the oven down to 160C, and roast for about 4 hours, checking every 2 hours or so to make sure that there’s enough liquid.

The pork is done when you can pull apart the meat easily with a fork.


At this time I remove the pork to rest, remove the rind, and place it back into a 180C oven over a rack on a flat tray to finish doing its thang.

And the juices from the bottom of the tray? Well I save about a cup of it for the sauce, and reserve the rest to keep the meat sitting moist after I’ve pulled the shoulder apart.

Maple and Honey Barbecue Sauce

500ml passata
250ml juices reserved from pulled pork
Roasted garlic from the pork shoulder
1 heaped tbsp of tomato paste
1 heaped tbsp of dijon mustard
3 tbsp Worchestershire sauce
100ml maple syrup
50g honey. I used a hot habenero honey that I was very generously given from Honeycomb Valley

Squeeze out the roasted garlic into the bottom of the saucepan, and add the rest of the ingredients. I like my barbecue sauce on the sweet side, but if you don’t, simply add less maple syrup. Cook down the sauce till the desired thickness, and take it off the stove.

Cabbage Slaw

Apple Cider Vinegar
Wholegrain mustard
Olive oil

Shred the cabbage, and finely chop the parsley. Season and mix in with the other ingredients to dress.


To finish, tear apart the shoulder by pulling at it with two forks, then place into a bowl and pour over the juices from the pan to keep it moist. Serve with buns, sauce, slaw, and break up the crackling into ‘chips’ – I simply cracked it along the score lines. 
I know it’s not exactly the SPAM of my childhood, but it’s my take on the comforts of days gone by. How about you? What’s your guilty pleasure? 

Jean’s Chilli Chicken, Eastwood


There has been a lot of brouhaha revolving around Korean Fried Chicken, but I think that there hasn’t been nearly enough recognition for it’s fiestier cousin – the chilli chicken.
I first had chilli chicken in Strathfield, after a night out at the bar with a few friends. The slow burn from the Korean Kochujang really hit the spot, and pieces of juicy chicken created an incredibly moreish and addictive mouthful, and left me loving that burn.

So I absolutely had to try the chilli chicken in Eastwood, after my Korean friend recommended it as being “very chilli, but very good”.

And it did not disappoint.

I ordered the chilli chicken with cheese, and it arrived in a sizzling hot plate with oozing, melted cheese draped over the top like a trophy wife. Fiery and decadent, the combination of punchy chilli sauce with chicken and cheese is surprisingly filling, even before you consider the sides.


It came with a lightly oiled rice that was dotted with various flavours like sesame seed, seaweed flakes and flakes of fish. The plastic gloves meant that you were meant to roll your own rice balls, which added to a sort of ‘hands-on’ element to the meal, though you could just as well eat it out of the bowl.

Creamy pasta salad and crunchy pickled radish both soothed and cleanse the palate from the relatively heavy – and heavenly – chicken. I wish there was more radish, but I’m really a pickle sort of girl.


In all, it was a very satisfying and filling dinner. The chilli chicken, which cost $38 at the time that we went, is really a meal for at least two people, but could easily feed 3-4. The staff are friendly and not in-your-face, which means that you’re left to enjoy your food in peace. There isn’t eftpos at the counter, but you can choose to pay at the bar of the hotel that the eatery is located in – which is where you’d have to order your drinks anyway.

Great for dinner, but better in a large group. Jean’s Chilli chicken is also open to the wee hours of the night, making it a perfect way to end a rousing evening out.

We at at:

Jeans Chilli Chicken
02 9874 1100
115 Rowe Street Eastwood, NSW

Jeans Chilli Chicken on Urbanspoon

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Stuffed Beaver, Bondi


Beyond the famous Poutine, I haven’t really heard much about Canadian cuisine. So when I got to go to the Stuffed Beaver in Bondi I leaped at the chance. Ready for fried pickles and clamato juice?

Beaver dam is a fantastic little diner/bar located on Bondi Road. It was a little quiet when I first arrived – just before the lunch rush – and we were greeted by a small team with wide smiles. As far as I can tell, the staff are actually from Canada, and they are just SO FRIENDLY. I guess that’s what they mean by Canadian hospitality.
Clockwise from left: Bloody Caesar, Frickles, Hot Wings

I LOVE myself a good bloody mary, and in the Stuffed Beaver I’ve found a version called the Bloody Caesar. It’s made with clamato juice, which is basically a mixture of clam broth and tomato juice. The flavours are bold and unapologetic, and this is reflected in all of the other food as well.

The hot wings – and I’m a chilli eater so I think I can say this – are HOT. It left my fingers covered and mouth stinging in all its hot wings glory. Thank goodness we had the battered and fried pickles on the side to balance it out. Sure, the wings were slightly difficult to eat because the wing tips were still attached – when you have to remove it when covered in slippery sauce, it can be quite a challenge – but it makes up for it in kick-you-off-your-seat flavour. The dill pickles were much milder, but surprisingly good and slightly moreish.

John Candy Combo

You can’t be in a bar without trying a burger, and with it’s slice of fried cheese – that’s not an egg in the photo – and brioche bun it promised me a juicy gooey flavourful burger. Well, this one delivered on the flavour, but was just a little bit dry. With fried bacon, beef patty, fried cheese and pickles, almost felt like it needed some sort of sauce.

Our sauce prayers were, however, answered with the next dish.

Classic Poutine

I think poutine is just one of those dishes that takes a classic and put a legendary stamp on it. Potato chips? Delicious. Chips and gravy? Awesome! Chips, gravy and cheese curds?

LEGEND – wait for it – DARY!!!! (NPH is awesome)

I like chips and gravy well enough, but I don’t crave it the way I now crave poutine. The poutine here is quite a bit on the salty side, but SO GOOD. I’d rather it a touch salty than a touch blah any day. If this is what poutine is like, then I think I’m booking the next flight to Canada.

Overall, the service was excellent and super friendly, the atmosphere was great, and the food was delish. Apparently a popular pick amongst the hungover crowd, Stuffed Beaver is somewhere I would go if I wanted a casual chilled out night with friends.

Or if I’m just craving poutine and hot wings.

Note: Tammi from Insatiable Munchies and her partner ate as guests of Stuffed Beaver and the Trish Nichol Agency

We ate at:

Stuffed Beaver
02 9130 3002
271 Bondi Road
Bondi NSW 2026

The Stuffed Beaver Dining Parlour on Urbanspoon

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Father’s Day Gift Roundup

Dad can be so hard to gift sometimes, especially because your dad might just be the stoic type who tells everyone not to make a fuss. Well, Dad deserves some pampering too, and if you are stuck on ideas, here are some cute, thoughtful ones that I’ve come across, that I absolutely love.

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