Monday, April 09, 2012

Easter Weekend

With four days off work I'm really not sure if we've been overly productive. Is relaxing productive?
Melbourne has been hosting the UCI World Track Cycling Championships so I've been in front of the tellie quite a bit. A bit of gardening and some regrouting of our tiled floor were both on my list with a few other things that I didn't get to.
Did manage a few rides that put over 250 kms back into the legs.

The cycling was very exciting with some great performances from the Brits, Aussies, French and the Belgies. I'm always impressed with the sportsmanship from cyclists with the losing opponent always congratulating the victor. Once the race is over, rivalry is replaced with friendship.
The UCI World Track Cycling Championships in Melbourne.
Several of my friends volunteered their services over the week as did Craig on the derny bike leading the riders in this photo from the official website.

Recently it was my birthday and Sue presented me with my first cook book - well I did say that when I retire I'd like to spend some time in the kitchen. My regular kitchen duties are cleaning up and making coffee, and serving port afterwards.
I've now graduated to preparation albeit with much supervision. The cook book is called Easy Gourmet - for me not so easy. As for Sue, she's already saying, "I wouldn't do it that way, we'll do it this way."
She likes to tinker.

Well, in my defense. I bought Leon this book because it had some nice pictures of yummy looking food and the word "easy"was on the cover. I thought it might inspire him. And, it has. BUT  some of the recipes read a little tasteless, or seem to do things the hard tinker.
Leon has been helping occasionally in the kitchen for about 6 months I guess. At first I hated it because he didn't know where anything was and would just do things any old way. (anal? moi?)
But now it's kinda cool having a sous chef! When I ask for fine, he does it fine. Yesterday he learned what a food processor was. We are definately making progress here. It's fun.
Next lesson is that he can't bask in the glory of making something and take ages to photograph it while the next part is burning on the stove top.
Still, one thing at a time. And at least I don't have to learn how to ride a bike!!!

I wonder how many of the recipes we'll get through
before I can actually do one on my own.

First recipe - Veal, eggplant and pasta timballo with cheese sauce.

It even looked yummy in the preparation stages.

And it looked as it did in the book.
I'm afraid I had little to do with the success of the course but I'll try harder next time.
What else is in this book that I can try? Let you know soon.

The wine I chose for the night was just our local South Australian Jacob's Creek bubbly while cooking - it's well priced and consistent for a "at home" sparkling.
I did choose however a very nice Cabernet Sauvignon from the historic winery of Tahbilk. We have some good memories of what was then called Chateau Tahbilk. The winery is situated up in the north of Victoria and gains its name from the aboriginal word Tahbilk Tahbilk meaning place of many watering holes. The first vines were planted in 1860 and although not the oldest Winery in Victoria, it is the oldest family owned winery. It also has the only existing pre-phylloxera vines that survived during the period when much of wine industry was wiped out.
The early buildings and underground cellars still exist and with Heritage listing.

Hope you all enjoyed the Easter with friends, family with good food and drink.


  1. Ha ha, your duties in the kitchen sound much like Nigel though he is trying. He makes pasta at least once a week no with me not having a look in,that is as long as he has a sauce ready for him to heat up. Also curry is OK, again as long as the sauce is ready for him to add to the cooked meat. He has got cooking rice taped :) He has made cherry clafoutis (under supervision) twice, so he is getting there. He also has the same problem as you with a wife who reads the recipe and then says I would do it this way!!

    Yesterday we spent the day watching the Paris / Roubaix. Tom Boonen made it look a bit like a walk in the park. It was his 4th win now and he won by 1min 39secs.

    Not long now...... Diane

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    2. I forgot to add that Nigel also makes an excellent Boeuf Bourguignon, problem is he uses the recipe that his sister gave him, which says onions 1 inch in diameter so the tape measure is added to the kitchen implements! It takes him all day, and there is a lot of washing up, but the end result is magnificent. I have not got the patience to make it the way he does!! I am used to short cuts:)

  2. I bet you improve on the recipe by tinkering as Sue does. She says that Nigella has her times wrong. Claims that some recipes are bland and need tinkering and as an expert taster, I have to agree. I'm afraid that my ineptness in the kitchen is due to being shooo'ed out and of course being completely spoilt.
    Missed Paris Roubaix as it was on in the wee hours and I fell asleep. Never mind, I'll find it on you tube.


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