Beaches, Babies, Beers and Brides (Part One)

It’s Monday the 31st of October… Halloween. It’s a perfect 20 degree day with the sun shining brightly over the backyard. Alistair’s cactus has bloomed, and Darcy has consequently bitten the flower since then (Darcy is Mum’s dog, not a human – that would be weird). Baker’s Delight have started stocking their fruit mince pies and we’ve snagged a couple to eat while watching Love Actually. My backpack is packed, my final catch ups completed, my stomach content and my heart is so, so full.

Our two and a half week trip home is nearing an end, and a little part of me is relieved. To say it’s been busy would be an understatement. However, it has been so worth the long journey home.

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We hit the ground running seeing family, friends and the familiar sights of our home town. I think on day two I was already back at Jacob’s ladder, simultaneously checking out the city and struggling to breath.

We visited our beloved beach and fought against the sea breeze to ride down to Yelo for a coffee and breakfast. I never realised how much I love our seaside until we were away from it for an extended period of time.

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The first week we stayed with Andrew’s parents, his sister Chelsea and their cat named Tess. I must admit it was lovely to wake up and have the house full of people running off for bike rides, or making coffee, chit-chatting the whole time.

One quiet day in the middle of the week we thought we’d play tourists in our own city and headed out to hike a little at Lesmurdie Falls.

This hike was quite the opposite of those we’ve done in Canada, but it was just as serene. Nothing makes me feel more at home or more relaxed than hearing the birds chirping, insects buzzing and kookaburras laughing in the middle of the bush. This day was such a nice reminder of why we will eventually return to this beautiful part of the world.

I was also lucky enough to spend a decent chunk of time catching up with my favourite gals. My beautiful Brianna was back in town for a weekend (she’s moved to Melbourne since I’ve been gone) and we all celebrated over wine and pizza at the Beaufort Street event Beauvine.

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The wine tasting was warmly welcomed, the food was tasty but the company was what made my night worth it. There’s something to be said about a friendship that can pick up right where it left off no matter how much time has passed. I’m fortunate enough to have eight of these, and seeing all of these faces makes me one happy gal indeed.

More to come on our time in Perth, if you can believe it our second week was busier than the first!
For now, Mum and I are celebrating Christmas instead of Halloween and making up for lost time.

Hanbel.
x

What Could Be More Important Than a Little Something to Eat?

There’s something unnerving and interesting about being a tourist in your own city. Quite often we live our lives in our comfort zones. We get in habits and frequent the same areas for catch ups, dinners and shopping.

Before we take off to explore new land, I really wanted to head down to Fremantle to explore some old land. Though it’s only a half an hour drive, we very rarely get our butts down to this end of town. And what a mistake that is, Freo = foodie heaven.

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With two of my best gal pals in tow, we wandered around the town, through the markets and around the marina. If anyone is wondering, three is the magic number for food sharing. We were able to sample so many things without getting ridiculous with the portioning.

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Chimek, What the Bao and Muffle & Co stole our hearts, wallets and stomach capacity. The New York Buffalo Wings are deeeelightful! Spicy and saucy, with the crunchiest fries on the side. I suggest you follow this up with some bao buns; we recommend the Crispy Skin Duck, Soft Shell Crab and Korean Beef.

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After you walk off the first round of food, and wash it down with a drink at one of the 27,000 bars and pubs around, it’s time for dessert.

Enter: the Muffle. A thing of beauty.

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Waffle mix (which tastes more like pancakes?) with a surprise in each bubble, forming a cone which is then filled with toppings and ice cream. We got the banoffee to slide us right into a food coma and craving an afternoon nap.

Thank you Anh and Rach for our mini Freo tour, I’ve loved hitting up some of the best spots in Perth with the best company.

IMG_0198IMG_0196My hot dates

Now, get yourself down there and try those bao buns!!!

Hanbel.
x

 

The Bucket (of Food) List

It is quite common to have a bucket list; something to work towards, to plan around, or just to check off occasionally on holiday.
I have one of these in my head, with some items checked off (visit Disneyland, get a tattoo, backpack around Europe) and many more to go (live in a different country, sky dive, make a difference).

However, the list that is currently taking my attention is one steering towards my palate. I am obsessed with researching restaurants, bars, cafes and recipes to try out. My entire day revolves around my next meal, that new place down the road or that one restaurant I’ll make it to… one day.

I’ve tried to narrow it down, because – lesbihonest – I could go on FOREVER.

2015-11-04 11_40_15-Lune Croissanterie (@lunecroissant) • Instagram photos and videos
2015-11-04 11_17_41-@26grains • Instagram photos and videos2015-11-04 11_27_48-Varsity Burgers Northbridge on Instagram_ “burgers American style🇺🇸 🍔 🍟 📷_

1. Sauma, Northbridge WA (Indian Pub Food, I’m so curious!)
2. Lune Croissanterie, Fitzroy VIC
3. 26 Grains, London UK (porridge bucket list!)
4. Varsity Burgers, Perth WA (how have I still not been?!)

2015-11-04 11_34_07-by CHLOE. (@bychefchloe) • Instagram photos and videosVovovroom2015-11-04 11_36_23-In-N-Out Burger (@innout) • Instagram photos and videos2015-11-04 11_21_02-OatMeals
5. By Chloe, New York USA (Mainly for Celeb stalking, but also – healthy!)
6. Gelato Messina, Fitzroy VIC (I’ve been to one in Sydney, but it is necessary to try it in a different state – right?)
7. More Burgers – In-N-Out, Los Angeles USA
8. Oat Meals, New York USA


2015-11-04 11_30_32-The Kettle Black (@kettleblackcafe) • Instagram photos and videos2015-11-04 13_31_47-The Itinerary - The Fat Duck

9. Sweet Green, All over USA
10. The Kettle Black, Melbourne VIC
11. The Fat Duck, London UK (ONE DAY, maybe..)
12. The Plaza, New York USA (specifically for High Tea)

*All images courtesy of the restaurant’s website or instagram, links are provided

Well, I’m sure you can tell what my favourite places are.. or where I’d really like to visit. I couldn’t have added in any other locations or we’d all be here for far too long. Gosh, I’m salivating just thinking of these.
I’m off to Melbourne this weekend to check a few off this list – catch you on the flip side! (With plenty to blog about I’m sure)

Hanbel.
x

Why You So Obsessed With Me?

It’s been a while since I’ve done up one of these lists, I know you all must be dying to know what’s on my mind right now.

So, without further adieu, current obsessions include:

  1. The Urban List
    Since Urbanspoon was bought out by Zomato, I am in desperate need of restaurant advice.
    Enter The Urban List. Not exclusively food orientated, this website offers tips and reviews on cafes, bars, pubs, shops, health clubs and online purchases throughout this fine city.
    Best Restaurants Perth Things To Do Perth
    I’m currently eating my way through their “50 Meals You Should Have Eaten If You Live In Perth“. 12 down, so much deliciousness to go.
  2. THESE NUTS
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    My new snack. So much crunch, a little bite of salt and not too moorish (so I don’t devour the whole packet in one sitting). Perfect for mid-morning, when it’s far too early to scoff down lunch.
  3. This Updo
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    My hairdresser is a magician. How she managed to create an updo with these baby hairs is beyond me! I had this done for a wedding, and it stayed in place for around 12 hours. If you’re in the Northern suburbs and in need of a hairdresser, look up AZ Hairstylist on the book. She’s a gem!
  4. Scar Tissue
    96647I’m re-reading this bad boy, and it still astonishes me how Anthony Keidis is still alive. The amount of drugs that have gone through his system, combined with downright dangerous situations is a recipe for disaster, but instead he produced incredible music. Great read!
  5. Pumpkins!
    Can you tell that Halloween is around the corner? I know as Aussies we’re not big celebrators of the holiday, but I still love a little festivity.
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    My little guy from 2011..

    My favourite American bloggers have been visiting pumpkin patches this week, and making me super jealous. Love, Taza and her littles,  Barefoot Blonde and her babe, and Emily from Cupcakes and Cashmere has it on her to-do list. One day I’ll get to do that…
    For now, I’ll settle for cooking something pumpkin based, watching Hocus Pocus and making Andrew carve a pumpkin or two with me.

And those are just a few of my favourite things. This week at least!

Hanbel.
x

Why You So Obsessed with Me?

My latest obsessions and addictions are of the health variety (I know, I’m sorry!).

Lately, my aim has been to get healthier and fitter. Which has probably been my aim for about 10 years now…
In the past few months though, I’ve shifted my focus towards living a healthier life in general, as opposed to trying to lose weight, and it seems to be working!

So, without further adieu, here are my current faves:

1. Deliciously Ella
www.deliciouslyella.com @deliciouslyella
This London gal is a great source of dinner inspiration. I’m constantly stalking her instagram for salad and roasted vegie ideas. I can’t to try out this Warm Sweet Potato, Mushroom and Spinach Salad.

2. Netball
Even though it can be quite brutal, I love this game. A few of my favourite girls and I started a casual team years ago, and after a little break, we’re back at it. The Sweaty Betty’s tend to, uh… not win a lot of our games, but we try so hard and have a lot of fun. I’ve recently begun playing in GD, which means more running than I’m used to – but I am loving it!

3. BodyWise App
www.bodywiseapp.com
BodyWise iPhone AppI literally downloaded this yesterday, so this recommendation may be completely false. However, I like all the aspects – being able to log workouts, rating how happy you are everyday and the way you can track what you’re eating.
Instead of counting calories, which can be an excruciating activity, it tracks your vegetable/fruit/meat/grains intake, as well as caffeine/junk food/alcohol/soft drink intake. This is such a healthier way to look at what you’re eating!

4. Tone It Up
www.toneitup.com @toneitup Tone It Up – YouTube
tone-it-up-runningOkay, so these two are super perky. There… I’ve warned you.
HOWEVER – take a look at their bodies and you can see why I put up with the perkiness. The workouts they upload to their youtube channel are serious business. Give the HIIT a try and you won’t know what hiit you 😉
I love these workouts for rainy days, or post-run when I want to work a little harder. One day I’ll have abs like them!

5. MY NEW BIKE
IMG_5479Yep, I did it. I’ve committed to this mountain biking thing and gotten my very own bike. She’s so beautiful and all I can think about is taking her out on the weekend! Wish me luck…

Have a happy and healthy weekend everybody!
Hanbel.
x

People Who Love to Eat are Always the Best People

“I’d be so skinny if I didn’t love food so much” Hannah, every day.

But I do, I do love food. So SO much. I have an obsession with needing to try everything, find new combinations, hit that latest breakfast spot, create a new dish at home.
I’m not an overly talented cook, but I am trying and improving! I am, however, an exceptional eater.

Therefore, Mum’s suggestion of hitting up the Good Food and Wine Show this past weekend was a no brainer.

Perth Good Food & Wine Show Tickets

In short, this is a huge event for foodies and vendors alike. With hundreds of exhibitors, master classes, Celebrity presentations and more, the Convention Centre gets packed out quickly. Which is why we decided to get in early (before all the free wine samples settled in).

IMG_5272 The fourth cheese along there (wrapped in a vine leaf), was delicious! It was the Bruny Island “Oen” and it was also ridiculously strong, and we smelt of cheese for the rest of the day; rookies.

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This was the only product all day that tempted me enough to buy it. Good, old fashioned peanut butter to add to my collection.
If you have a nut allergy, don’t come to my house; I’ll come to yours.

IMG_5276We kept the wine sampling to minimum, as it was still morning, but Mum couldn’t go past her favourite – Mr Riggs.
The McLaren Vale Shiraz was heavenly, and concreted my decision to visit that wine region one day.

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Feeling a little more peckish, we visited the Grazing Garden where our old friends Comida Do Sul were serving some new creations.

IMG_5278We snacked on this Banana/Coconut Ceviche while getting our seats for the Theatre. It was zingy, smooth, sweet, savoury and a few more contradictory flavours! The punchy lime dressing and vibrant red onion were mellowed out by the banana, with the coconut and coriander topping it off the create a surprising palate explosion. Was it a dessert? Was it savoury? Who the hell cares, it was delicious!
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The timing worked out well for us to sit down and watch Adam Liaw (former Masterchef winner) cook up a storm. He introduced the session by explaining that he wanted to have a conversation with us, and proved it by answering all questions, walking out into the audience and running way over time because he was trying to explain things so thoroughly.

I learnt so much in his 45 minutes on stage about Asian cooking, and general kitchen tips.

1. When assembling a rice paper roll, don’t let the rice paper soak for too long. It should be the consistency of a child’s raincoat.

2. Put your rice paper rolls filling on one side, and the prawns towards the other. That way when you are finished rolling, the prawns will end up on top, and your rolls will look restaurant standard.

3. When creating a sauce, and trying to find the balance just begin with two ingredients. Mix your sweet and sour together until they tastes pleasant, and then add in savoury. Keep it simple!

4. Don’t forget about the 5th taste – Umami. Google it, trust me.

Thank you Adam, just thank you!
IMG_5282Once Adam had finished up, we decided to grab our last morsels and GTFO because it was getting hectic.
We began a hunt for dumplings, because why not? Mum spotted the Jumplings stall and I did a little internal cheer.
Having eaten these a couple of times already, I remembered exactly how delicious they are!
We grabbed the duck dumplings, because I couldn’t bring myself to pay $24 for lobster with truffle shavings. Although now I’m thinking about them and getting massive regret.

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We finished up with another old favourite, Chicho Gelato, because we couldn’t walk past the new flavours they had on offer. Both of us plumped for the “Roast Fig, Marscapone with Balsamic Caramel”, which didn’t taste of fig or balsamic but was delectable all the same.

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All in all, a great way to spend a frosty morning in Perth. We came, we ate, we conquered.
And I was complimented on my lipstick, so… winning!*

Happy eating all, enjoy your food, enjoy your life!
Hanbel.
x

*It’s Morange AA2 from MAC, if you’re curious.