Archive | August, 2010

Dahlia

31 Aug

How can you not be intrigued by this beautiful and perfect Dahlia shape?

The above an interchangeable seat object Dahlia, bowled me over with its clean aesthetics. A fold-out thick wool felt seat that allows for various styles that suit your fancy. Too many guests? Join up another Dahlia with strong magnets and expand the party! It will be the seat that your guests admire and gaze longingly at as they enter your lounge room. An organic object in a room full of rigid furniture never fails. Designed by Kai Linke.

If you don’t need a stool, what about an acrylic Dahlia lamp called Skitsch? (even the name is cute!)

That translucent purple will fit in to most modern homes, but I think I’d prefer this in a slightly kitschy or Scandinavian style home, in which I will invite you guys over to in the next twenty years when I buy myself a house. It’ll be decked out in birch/cream/white furniture, with the occasional splash of colour from the soft furnishings and art work (and multi-coloured kitchen goods). This gorgeous lamp will hang over my sun-drenched dining table. As I eat my muesli with a cuppa in the morning, I’ll raise my eyes and admire its beauty every now and then.

You can buy it here.

I love geometrics.

In sync with nature

27 Aug

This is how I feel like. Except much smaller. Negligible.

Covers from Gebrauchsgraphik magazine
Title: Jan Tschichold

These are some kind of lovely that I find comforting. Perhaps it’s the hand drawn nature of these illustrations, and the slightly unsaturated colours that do not attempt to stab my eye, but meld together so gently and those block shapes; they resemble paper cut-outs.

Via But Does it Float.

And my current desktop:

Thai Green Curry

26 Aug

What do you do when it’s so damn cold out here?

Eat curry.

It’s the one thing that I’ve been wanting and wanting and wanting… and finally got down to making it. I stumbled upon the above can of vegan green curry paste at Minh Phat, which was the cure for my lazy bones. No pounding and additional washing up.

Thai Green Curry
serves 4

1/2 medium eggplant, cut into small chunks
1 large carrot, 1cm slices
1 potato, small chunks
1 large handful of green beans, halved
200g firm tofu, small chunks
1 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tin of green curry paste
1 can (400ml) of coconut milk
bunch of fresh Thai basil, shredded
Raw sugar, salt and pepper to taste

1. Spend a bit of time chopping up all the ingredients. If you’ve got other veggies lying around that you need to get rid off, then use them too. (I added bean sprouts)

2. Heat 1 tbs of oil in wok, fry onions until translucent. Add the garlic and green curry paste. Fry for another 2 minutes or so.

3. Toss in the carrot, eggplant and potato, and fry for a while, until slightly browned on the edges.

4. Tip in the coconut milk, and half a tin of water, and let veggies simmer for a bit until softened to your liking.

5. Add tofu and green beans, and cook this for a little while, say a minute or two. They don’t take too long to cook. If mixture gets too dry, add more water.
6. This can get pretty spicy, so taste and adjust level with sugar to suit your preference. Season with salt and pepper.

Toss in the basil just before eating, with a side of brown rice. Roti will be pretty fantastic too.

Quinoa Avocado Salad

24 Aug

This past weekend had been very exciting, doing loads and getting in the much needed fresh air and sunshine. I love myself a good citrusy and balanced salad. By balanced, I mean grain, green, savoury, sweet, tangy and nutty. I like that combination.
Let me just tell you, make this. Make this make this make this. The avocado provided that lovely creaminess unlike any other creamy (often bad fat-laden mayo) dressing, and the balance of sultanas and almonds was delightful. The lemon-cumin dressing was also light and will definitely be one that I will be using often.

Quinoa Avocado Salad (adapted from here
serves 4
3/4 cup raisins
1 cup red or white quinoa, rinsed well
2 large lemons
3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp. ground coriander
1/4 tsp. ground cumin
1/4 tsp. sweet paprika
2 medium firm-ripe avocados (6 to 7 oz. each), pitted, peeled, and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
5 sprigs coriander, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup almonds
4 tbs white sesame seeds (optional)
Freshly ground black pepper

In a medium bowl, soak the raisins in hot water for 5 minutes. Drain and set aside (I didn’t do this, but if yours are rock hard, then you should)

Heat saucepan and toast almonds until brown. Turn off heat and crush almonds with a mortar and pestle. Toss in sesame seeds in pan while pan is still hot, and toss it around till brown. Remove from heat.

In same saucepan, bring water, quinoa, and 1/2 tsp. salt to a boil over high heat. Cover, reduce the heat to medium low, and simmer until the water is absorbed and the quinoa is translucent and tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Fluff with fork and leave to cool.

In a small bowl, zest and juice lemons. Whisk in olive oil, coriander, cumin, paprika, and 1/4 tsp. salt.

In a large bowl, toss vinaigrette with the quinoa, raisins, avocado, coriander, and almonds. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve.

Peanut Butter Filled Chocolate Cookies

21 Aug

I don’t suppose this post needs any form of description.
I made this for two important people in my life and shipped it across the ocean.
These cookies took seven days to arrive.
But I think they held up all right. These were extremely delicious when I ate some straight out of the oven.
Depending on the type of peanut butter than you use, adjust amount of soy milk so that both cookie dough and filling form into balls easily without crumbling. The chunky PB in which my recipient is a fan of, was drier and needed more soy milk. But I’d say, smooth PB FTW. Come on now, tell me which PEANUT BUTTER CAMP are you in?!

Peanut Butter Filled Chocolate Cookies (adapted via Desert Culinary)

Cookies
A:
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup dutch cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
B:
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup peanut butter
1 egg replacer
1/4 cup soy milk
1 teaspoon vanilla

Peanut Butter Filling
3/4 cup sifted confectioners’ sugar
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup soy milk + more

Preheat oven to 350F/180C

A: Sift together in a medium bowl.

B: In a small bowl, prepare “egg” as per box instructions (whisk 1 tsp + 2 tbs water) In a large bowl, beat together butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and peanut butter until well combined. Add egg, soy milk and vanilla. Beat well.
Gently mix in the flour mixture about 1/3 at a time until incorporated. Form into 3cm balls, approximately 24.

For the filling

Combine confectioners’ sugar, 1/2 cup peanut butter and soy milk in a mixing bowl and beat until smooth. Form into 24 balls.

Working on a silpat or parchment, gently flatten each chocolate ball. Top with peanut butter ball. Carefully fold chocolate dough over the peanut butter ball and seal the edges. Roll dough into a ball and flatten with palms.

Bake cookies for about 8-10 minutes,until the surface begins to slightly crack. Let cool for 1 minute on the sheet. Transfer to wire racks and cool completely.

Susie WIP

19 Aug


16.08.10 Colour pencils on paper
Meet Susie; a sketch in class when it got too boring.

Yong Green Food

15 Aug

I don’t think I’m the only one who’s got difficulty leaving the house, especially in winter. But having company for lunch is a good incentive, and I finally bought some fresh produce from the market in preparation for the upcoming war (with school), including Pho spice mix and 4 cute yellow squash(es?) (have never eaten it).

The last time I was at Yong’s, I’d just given a presentation for a major assignment (which turned out really well), and met up with Bry for a Raw Blueberry Cheesecake and almond milk sweetened with agave nectar. Cheesecake? A+. Almond milk? Meh… it was too gritty and perhaps it was kept next to the savoury food station, it had hints of smokey soy sauce.

The savoury mains on my second visit did not disappoint. Cheryl ordered the Chilli Bean Wrap ($8.50) filled with baby spinach leaves, avocado and cheese and reported that it was pretty good. My raw cashew bread ($10) with tomato, avocado, cucumber, beetroot spread and tomato sauce with a side of salad was DELISH! I could not get enough of the tomato sauce and the dressing on the salad was light and refreshing. Don’t be fooled by the size of the two small pieces of “bread”; this was surprisingly filling.

But my greedy self could not leave without trying the highly recommended Raw Green Tea Cheesecake ($7.50), made from a cashew and coconut base. It was so rich, I felt like a millionaire. I was going “oohh.. I’m full…” *nom* “Can hardly move…” *nom* And then the plate was bare.

As we were leaving, we spied several orders of warm rice and hot curries. We know what we’ll be back for.

Yong Green Food
421 Brunswick Street
Fitzroy