It Just Has To Be Delicious

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Bib and Tucker – smoked salmon, poached egg, salsa, fennel and potato cake, broccolini

Fine Dining:

La Petite Mort, Shenton Park (amazing degustation)

St Michael 6003, Highgate (quality French food with some good value pricing options)

The Boatshed, South Perth (great food and amazing city views)

Nobu, Crown (next level Japanese food)

Smart-Casual Dinners

Satsuki, Subiaco (tuna tataki to die for)

Duende, Leederville (great tapas)

Neho Asian Tapas, Victoria Park (quirky and fun)

La Vida Urbana, Leederville (great Mexican)

Hunter and Barrel, Whitfords (good ribs)

Bivouac, Northbridge (great Middle Eastern options)

Casual and yummy:

Scents of Siam, Joondalup (amazing roti and mussaman curry)

Shou Japanese Cafe, Greenwood (wonderful value Bento boxes and great sashimi)

Katsuya, Joondalup (great katsu chicken curry and good sashimi)

Bunn Mee, Leederville (several wonderful authentic dishes from Masterchef’s Jenny)

Sun Kwong, Whitfords Mall (great noodle soups and fried kway teow)

Shehnai, Ocean Reef (the best curries in Perth)

Brunch and Brekkie

F5 Cafe, Belmont (great nasi goreng)

Chinta, North Perth (a zen oasis with quality innovative food)

The Little Pantry, Subiaco/Shenton Park (everything is lovely)

Bib and Tucker, North Fremantle (great views, good choice, and good allergy options)

The Shorehouse, Swanbourne (crab omelette is a must)

May Street Larder, East Fremantle (good for allergies)

Voyage Kitchen, Sorrento (feelgood atmosphere, Norma’s Salsa is a signature dish)

Sayers, Leederville (consistently serves great quality dishes, good menu choices)

Pixel, Leederville (wonderful breakfast options, beautiful presentation)

tbsp, Bayswater (Korean cafe serving great brekkie and a superb kim-cheese burger)

Good Things, Mosman Park (nice breakfast options in leafy surroundings)

Moore and Moore, Fremantle (wonderful menu in an art gallery)

Propeller, North Fremantle (middle eastern bold flavours)

Duck Duck Bruce, Fremantle (inventive dishes with an Asian twist, fun atmosphere)

Bread in Common, Fremantle (quality food, made with love)

Gordon Street Garage, West Perth (brilliant brekkies, crab omelette is amazing)

Best Gelato and Desserts

Gusto, Leederville (sublime gelato, has several dairy free and gluten free options)

The Milk Barrel, Hillarys (tiramisu gelato is amazing)

Measure, Mt Lawley (fine dining desserts from Masterchef’s Karmen)

Best Dairy Free Selection

Bib and Tucker, North Fremantle

May Street Larder, East Fremantle

Tartine Cafe, Trinity Arcade

F5 Cafe, Belvidere St, Belmont

Chakra, Inglewood

 

Amani Bar & Kitchen Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Opposite the Luna Theatre on Oxford Street, sits Amani Bar and Kitchen. We visited after work and it was already filling with Friday night socializers. A combination of high tables, a few lower chairs and tables, and a long bar, there’s a perch to suit everybody, and the music is retro funky, perfect for setting a carefree mood.

We had heard that their vegan/vegetarian selection was good, so we chose a range of tapas style dishes.

Starting off with a superb glass of Castelli Riesling while we perused the array of choices.20200313_164948

The first dish was most likely the star of the show – a beautifully soft and gooey mushroom parfait with onion jam and generous fingers of toasted focaccia. Everything melted into a wonderful combination on the tongue, and I would have been happy of this were my only dish of the evening.

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The next dish was cauliflower and walnut tacos with guacamole and a preserved lemon cabbage slaw. Again, each mouthful – pure joy.

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Next came miso glazed eggplant with hummus and coconut ‘bacon’, perfectly cooked, soft and luscious, and another tick in the excellent column.

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Our last serve was non-veggie – cajun prawns with charred corn salsa, guacamole, and white corn chips. Excellent finger food, plentiful prawns, and every scoop a delight.

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We had a really good time at Amani, there was a great friendly vibe, and the food was outstanding. There’s certainly plenty of dishes to suit most palates and diets, other dishes on the menu include charred pork shoulder, scallops, chicken liver parfait, fried chicken and maple bacon sliders, plus a variety of cheeses and dips. I’ll definitely be back.

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Pearfect Pantry Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Pearfect Pantry is a gem of a cafe near Herdsman Lake. It’s a bit hard to find, just off of Herdsman Parade. There is parking around the back by the lake and in some of the side streets off Herdsman Parade. Once you find it, it is a cave of vegan delights with numerous options for breakfast and great cakes. It’s quite quaint and casual – a place where the food is made with love.

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I chose coffee and a vegan lemon cake.

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On another occasion we chose the vegan Big Mack. This was really nice and came with hash browns and a great vegan sweet chilli/sour cream sauce. The bun was great, nice patty and tasty vegan cheese.

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We also chose the vegan nachos, made with jackfruit, lots of chilli, onions, avocado and pickles and tasty nacho chips. The pulled jackfruit was a little soft, but tasty and the vegan sour cream delicious.

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Here are some pictures of the food on offer.

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Kobe Sushi Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Kobe sushi has been serving up great Japanese options for many years at Whitford City Hillarys. There are a few vegan things on the menu – delicious vegetable tempura, and vegetable sushi rolls. There are bento box options and donburi as well as items in the cold cabinet. I chose the tempura with udon noodle soup. This was freshly made to order.

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The tempura veggies were beautifully crispy, a selection of onion, potato, broccoli, zucchini, and sweet potato served with a tentsuyu sauce. The noodles were nicely soft and in a delicious broth.

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Kobe is definitely a good choice for lunch when you are shopping at Whitfords.

 

Imli, Joondalup

IMLI Indian Restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Imli is an Indian restaurant on Reid Promenade in Joondalup. They have an extensive menu which includes several vegetarian and vegan options. We found that asking the wait staff to make the dishes dairy free, they substituted coconut milk and coconut yoghurt where they could.

Veggie samosas are a great starter option, but quite filling.

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Dhal is always a favourite and good for providing protein. Tarka dhal is delicious.

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Mushroom muttar is a delicious spicy curry of mushrooms and peas.

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The naans are great and beautifully prepared – pillowy and delicious. We choose methi naans with fenugreek leaves.

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The rice is always beautifully cooked too – lovely separate grains.

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Other vegan favourites are bhindi masala (okra) probably my go to dish on the whole menu. The bhindi is always fresh, not tinned or frozen.

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We also like the aloo gobi – potatoes and cauliflower.

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Imli has a great vegan and vegetarian selection and is consistently good. They also have the standard meat options for those who eat meat, so there is something for everybody and you won’t be disappointed.

 

Mashawi Currambine Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Mashawi continues to be a firm favourite for middle eastern fare in Currambine.

Vegetarian and vegan options are plentiful, although they have stopped providing pickles with the breads which is a shame. Hummus and baba ghanoush are great dip options, and vegan soups also appear on the menu.

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20191211_175024Hot tapas include a vegan moussaka and shakshouka, although we found the okra a little disappointing.

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There are several vegan tagines and our favourite is mujaddara, rice and lentils with caramelised onions and crispy cauliflower.

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Other tagine options include vegetable couscous, cauliflower and potato, sweet potato and zucchini, and black fez (tomatoes and eggplant with couscous).

Mashawi also provide non dairy smoothies. Lots of great options for plant based dining here.

 

I love tempura – the light batter and the soft veggies are such a great contrast. You can make your own dipping sauce for these kakiage, but I prefer to serve them with a nice thick homemade mayonnaise. Mine are a bit smaller than the traditional round ones that you see at sushi bars, but they cook fairly quickly and are great to be prepared in advance and then reheated in a hot oven for 10 minutes.

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Ingredients:

You can use any veggies, but I chose a combination of sweetcorn, broccoli, carrot and onion. This recipe makes 6 kakiage (plus a tester).

1 Onion thinly sliced
2 Small carrots cut into matchstick size pieces
1 Portion of kernels cut from the cob of one ear of corn (remove husk and silk first)
5 florets of broccoli cut into small pieces

8 tablespoons of plain flour
2 tablespoons of corn flour
1 teaspoon of salt
200mls of cold water (preferably from the fridge)

Enough vegetable oil to fill a small saucepan about a third full.

Method:

  1. While the saucepan of oil is heating, prepare the vegetables and place them in a bowl.
  2. In a separate bowl or jug, mix the batter ingredients – salt, flour, cornflour and water. Don’t overmix the batter – a few small lumps will be okay.
  3. Add the batter to the vegetables and mix well.
  4. Check that the oil is ready by dropping a very small droplet of batter into the pan. If it fizzes and rises up, the temperature is probably right.
  5. Using a very large metal spoon or heat resistant spatula, scoop up a large spoonful of the batter/veg mixture. Carefully slide it off the spoon and into the oil. It might look like it won’t hold together, but it will – don’t worry.
  6. After 3-4 minutes, flip the kakiage and cook for another 3-4 minutes on the other side. The kakiage won’t go really dark, but some of the veggies may look a little brown, The onion strands should be lovely and crispy.
  7. Drain on kitchen paper and serve immediately.
  8. Alternatively place in a an oven dish and cover with foil. When you are ready to serve, warm them up in the oven for 10 minutes at 190 deg C.
  9. Serve with mayonnaise, or tentsuyu sauce with grated daikon.

Other good veggies for this recipe are potato, sweet potato, green beans, eggplant, squash, mushrooms, cauliflower, broccolini, spring onion. I would always recommend using onion because it adds so much flavour and gives some nice raggedy crispy edges.

 

Vegan Adventures

I recently decided to change my diet to more of a plant based diet, and so far it has had some amazing health benefits such as dropping my blood pressure.

I am not totally 100% vegan, I eat eggs, but I don’t eat dairy or meat, and I am still having fish once a week, but I thought that it would be fun to share some of the new recipes that I am creating in the kitchen and some of the restaurant experience that I have had.

I do have some wonderful books for inspiration.

20200114_131731Planted by Chantelle Nicholson is a great book for when you need dinner party ideas. Everybody thinks of a vegan dinner party as a nut roast, but she has brought together a collection of sublime plant based recipes that will wow your guests.

The Global Vegan by Ellie Bullen is a collection of recipes from around the world and more of your ‘everyday’ dishes that you can prepare for midweek meals, She has a great vegan ‘fried egg’ recipe too.

I have found it quite easy to substitute dairy products except for cheese. It’s really hard to find a good vegan cheese substitute for lovely melty cheddar or mozzarella, but things are slowly improving and there will be a pretty close version very soon. It doesn’t help that I am allergic to guar which is often used as a thickener in vegan cheese and vegan ice cream.
I tend to use Nuttelex buttery instead of butter and Cocobella coconut yoghurt instead of regular yoghurt. I mix up my milks using a combination of soy, almond and coconut milk. Cream can be substituted with cashew/coconut cream and with a little effort you can get the lovely thick creamy consistency.

I am not a fan of vegan things that ‘look like meat’, because I am not missing the texture of meat, but there are are some good burgers and sausage substitutes around. Grill’d have a vegan burger as well as a Beyond Burger patty, and both are fairly good although the Beyond Burger has a slight tang of cat food about it.

If you are planning to go to more of a plant based diet, do your research and consult your doctor. Make sure that you get enough protein and that you supplement your vitamins appropriately.

Stay tuned – most of my blog posts from now on will be vegan based or mainly vegan.

Lemon Cake

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I do love a lemon cake, and this recipe makes a lovely light lemony sponge. The amounts for the frosting are approximate because I add and taste as I go along.

Set the oven to 170 deg C and grease and prepare two standard cake tins. I like to put baking parchment in the base and I tend to use springform tins because its easier to pop the cakes out once they’re done.

Ingredients:
Cake:
170g butter (or Nuttelex Buttery or other vegan butter/substitute if you are dairy free)
200g caster sugar
4 eggs beaten
320g plain flour
4 tablespoons of cornflour
Half a teaspoon of salt
One and a half teaspoons of baking powder
1 cup of milk (you can use soy, almond, coconut, or a mixture if you are dairy free)
A quarter of a cup (60 mls) of vegetable oil (don’t use olive oil – it will taste too olivey)
The zest of 2 lemons and 60mls of lemon juice (wash the lemons before zesting them)
Frosting:
Approx 150g of butter or non-dairy substitute
Approx 125g (1 cup) of icing sugar (powdered sugar)
Zest of 1 lemon plus some of the juice (see method)

Recipe:

  1. Set the oven to 180 deg C (or 175 fan assisted).
  2. Using an electric whisk, whisk the butter and sugar until light and creamy (2-3 minutes).
  3. Add the eggs and whisk again for a minute or two.
  4. Stir and fold in the dry ingredients – flour, cornflour, salt, lemon zest and baking powder.
  5. Stir in the wet ingredients – milk, lemon juice, and oil.
  6. The batter should be fairly liquid rather than thick . It’s okay if it is a little bit lumpy, but try to smooth out any big lumps.
  7. Pour the batter into the prepared tins.
  8. Bake for approx 20-30 minutes, but check them after 20 minutes. When they are lightly golden brown and a skewer or fork comes out of the mixture clean – they’re done.
  9. Leave them for 5 minutes, then take the cakes out of the tins and cool on a cooling rack.

Frosting:

  1. Using an electric whisk, whisk the butter or substitute until light and creamy.
  2. Add the icing sugar slowly – it should thicken up.
  3. Stir in the lemon zest.
  4. Add some of the lemon juice and whisk again. Keep adding the lemon juice until the frosting is spreadable but not too runny. If you add too much lemon juice, add more icing sugar to thicken it up again. Taste the frosting to make sure it tastes good and isn’t too greasy or too acidic – adjust the sugar and lemon juice as required. If too lemony, you can always add water instead of juice to make it looser.
  5. Place the base of the cake on a suitable plate or stand (you can line it with baking parchment if you like).
  6. Spread half of the frosting in the middle of the cake and sandwich the halves together.
  7. Spread or pipe the rest on top of the cake.
  8. Put the kettle on… it’s tea and cake time !

 

 

 

The Beehive is a typical English country pub in Horringer, Suffolk. It’s a very pretty location, very chocolate box-worthy.

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We visited for lunch on a lovely sunny day and enjoyed the old pub atmosphere and the warm welcome.

I chose thai style chicken which came with egg fried rice. It was nice but a little heavy on the salt.

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My partner chose lamb shank with mustard mash. This was absolutely delicious, and probably the best meal of the three.

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Our auntie chose a seafood linguine, which was good, but very hands on, with lots of seafood in the shell. She enjoyed it but found it quite messy to negotiate and it would have been good if the menu had mentioned that the seafood was shell-on.

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For dessert the chef made me a dairy free ice cream sundae with berries which was very good.

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My partner chose the sticky date pudding which he thoroughly enjoyed.

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The Beehive is a great location for an English pub lunch, and the food is prepared with love.

 

If you are at Vocal Booth Weekender, staying at the Palmera Apartments, you will most likely take the short walk up the hill to the supermarket at some point. Next door the the supermarket is a large bar and tapas cafe called Delpuerto.

We stopped off for a quick lunchtime bite and were pleasantly surprised to find lots of options on the menu. Bread is a given – fresh and local, served in a basket.

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We picked three dishes from the tapas menu. First to arrive was the prawn salad. This wasn’t quite as expected, mainly crabstick with just a few fresh prawns, but it was tasty nonetheless and really nice with the bread.

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I love potatoes and had a real hankering for some patatas bravas. Again they weren’t quite what I had in mind, but they were really tasty with a lovely spicy dressing.

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Our third dish was bbq chicken wings, which were the star of the show – crispy, delicious with a great sauce. I would order them again without hesitation.

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Delpuerto is well worth a visit – relaxed, friendly and a good selection of dishes.

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