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Monday, March 30, 2015

Lately, in Pictures #65

 

I farewell-ed a friend at the Bank at Newtown last weekend - I ordered the Pulled Pork burger. It was really, really delicious. But it really hurt the wallet at $18. It was tasty, but I don't know if I would repeat the experience at that price.

 

Our local Woolies was clearing out veggies, so everything in the above photo was just 50c! We grabbed a little of everything - including rhubarb which we've never tried before. 


I have really been loving making my own smoothies with my George Foreman Mix and Go Pro - it's virtually no-mess, cheaper than buying them and quick and easy. I am mindful of how much sugar smoothies can contain, so I try to have them more as a treat.

 

My friend Rai had her 21st two weeks ago - she hired a Catamaran boat and we went out in Sydney Harbour for a couple of hours. On the way out in the harbour, we went past the Opera House, and the cute Sydney seal that sun-bakes on the steps! The weather was absolutely perfect, and the water was so warm and beautiful. I'm not much of a boat/water person but I would absolutely do that again - it was the perfect Saturday.



Last weekend J and I went mini-golfing. I am atrocious - the children were seriously doing better than I was. Hitting straight is apparently something I find very difficult. It was still a really fun little date-activity - the centre we went to had great props and cool trick-shots, and there was a 'bonus' round with a very narrow ramp, and if you got a hole-in-one then you won a free game, which J was successful at!

 

I am loving my new job - the long hours have taken a bit of adjusting to, so I make sure to regularly break my day up with tea and coffee breaks. A pot of T2's 'Detox' tea on my desk always perks me up mid-morning. 
 

Found Rommy's new hiding spot - in amongst my clothes. He would be impossible to find if it weren't for his big yellow eyes poking out <3 p="">

 

Really making an effort to organise monthly posts - I usually take time out each month to plan the month ahead, but for a variety of reasons those posts don't always go ahead. So I'm also scheduling in time each week to try and get all posts written up and scheduled in advance.

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Thursday, March 26, 2015

OOTN: Baby, I Got the Blues


Last weekend I had the perfect occasion to wear my gorgeous new cobalt blue skirt from Popbasic.
Although it was a really fun night, it was a sad occasion, as it marked the farewell of one of my good friends who is leaving us for Europe indefinitely.


The length of this skirt is perfect on me, hitting just above the ankles. It's sits high on my waist, so I paired it with one of my favourite crops. I really love this combo - the bright blue contrasted with the black and white pattern just work really well together.


I also thought it was the perfect opportunity to wear my new HFB Interwoven clutch. I think the laser-cut pattern on the clutch works really well with the pattern of my shirt. And to tie it all together, I wore my new black flats with gold-bow detailing from River Island.


Crop - Dotti
Skirt - Popbasic
Shoes - River Island
Clutch - Her Fashion Box

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Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Haul: Priceline 40% off Sale


Even when I feel like I'm restraining myself, I somehow manage to always walk out of Priceline's 40% off sales having spent more than I intended.

There were many more things I convinced myself to not buy than what I did buy, so I am happy about that. Sometimes Priceline's catalogue sales are actually better than 40% off (e.g. when their Maybelline mascaras are $10) so I tried to not get swept away in the hype.


I picked up two colours from Essie's Autumn collection; Dress to Kill (on the left) and the Perfect Cover Up (on the right). TPCU is a really beautiful deep, dark green that almost looks black in low lighting. I was also especially drawn to 'Rule of Plum' from the Sally Hansen Autumn collection. 


Revlon released some new lipsticks; the 'HD Lipstick', so of course I had to get a few shades. I think it's a bit cute that every shade in the collection is named after a flower. 



I was thrilled that my local Priceline still had plenty of the 'Miss Manga' Loreal mascara - I am really keen to test the 'Mega Volume' claims.
Annnnd some practical purchases - I always take these sales as an opportunity to stock up on my favourite foundation (because I refuse to pay RRP and it's always amazing to have backups on hand). 

I have actually been loving the Loreal Volume Million Lashes mascara the past few months, but it was nowhere to be found in-store. So I picked up the trusty old Maybelline Falsies. 

Can you tell I like volumising mascaras? 

What did you pick up in the sales? Share your haul with me in the comments below! 


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Thursday, March 12, 2015

Recipe: Spiced Pumpkin and Pine Nut Ravioli with Sage-Butter Sauce


I wish I could claim credit for this delectable dish. I took it off Taste.com.au, but I thought I would share the recipe with you all anyway, with my own added tips and advice. I've made this meal a couple of times, and the first few times were almost disastrous, so this way you can avoid the same mistakes as me! 

INGREDIENTS
- 500g butternut pumpkin, peeled and chopped
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/3 cup pine nuts
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 1/4 cup parmesan, grated
- For the pasta: ration of 1 egg / 1 cup of flour
- 200g butter, chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh sage leaves
- 2 tbps fresh lemon juice

METHOD
1. Start off by making the dough for the pasta. In a bowl, place a mound of 1 cup of flour. Create a well in the centre, and add 1 egg. Use a fork to whisk the egg, gently adding in flour from the edges of the well. Once it's all mixed up, take it out of the bowl and onto a bench and use your hands to knead it until it becomes elastic. If you press the top of the dough and it springs back, then it's ready! Wrap the dough-ball with glad wrap and pop it in the fridge.

2. Steam the pumpkin until it gets soft enough to be able to mash with a fork. Once it's cooked, mash until smooth. 

3. While it's steaming, heat the oil in a small frypan and fry the pine nuts. These cook really quickly, so stir them quickly and do not leave them unattended, or lest they shall burn! Add the garlic and cumin, stirring through until aromatic. 

4. Add the pine nut mixture to the mashed pumpkin, and add in the parmesan cheese. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. 

5. Take the pasta dough out of the fridge and using a pasta machine, roll it out into thin sheets. I normally take it to level "2" on my pasta machine - that way it's not too thin that it will break easily, but it won't get too thick when you add two sheets together. 

NB: We have a ravioli maker - this is the best because it makes it really easy to make sure that all ravioli pieces are the same size, and it makes it really easy to not overfill the parcels. Whether you use a ravioli maker or do it free-hand, make sure you use plentyyy of flour on your workspace. This will stop the pasta sticking and make it easier to work with. Making sure all the parcels are the same size will ensure consistency when cooking. 


6. Lay one sheet of pasta flat (if on a bench, or in the ravioli maker) and then spoon about a teaspoon of the pumpkin mixture into the centre. Lay another sheet of pasta over the top, and shape into ravioli parcels. Here is where using a ravioli maker comes in real handy - there is spiky edges that cut the ravioli into the perfect shapes when you use a rolling pin over it, and seals the ravioli into parcels. 
If you're not using a ravioli maker, use a small glass that will leave a sufficient edge outside your filling. Add a line of water around the edges of the parcel, and use a fork to press the edges together.

7. Cook the ravioli in salted, boiling water for about 6 minutes on high heat to get al dente pasta. Remove with a slotted spoon. 

8. At the same time, to make the sage butter sauce, melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Once the butter is melted, add the sage, and continue to cook, stirring occasionally. You'll know when it's done because the sage will get really crispy, and the butter will be golden-brown. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice.

9. Divide up the ravioli, and add about a tablespoon of the butter-sage sauce to each dish, with some of the crispy sage for texture. 

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