Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Revolver-esque breakfast

breakfast 2
Originally uploaded by haydnfj
Thanks to my mother's group, I have discovered a wonderful cafe called Revolver. It's in an old general store in Annandale. It's not in a strip of cafes or shops, it just regally sits on a corner on a residential street. And oh what wonderment it holds!

I have neglected taking a pic of the breakfast I love there. I think I am too excited when it arrives to do so. The breakfast is a bunch of things, which is why I love it. I still don't particularly like eggs, so there needs to be much there to hide it. This breakfast includes scrambled eggs, sourdough toast, roast tomatoes, rocket (arugula), something called Danish feta (more creamy texture than regular feta)...and half of an avocado. But not just any avocado. The hollow from the seed is filled with pesto. So simple, but such an extra special little touch.

A couple weekends ago, Haydn came up with his own spin on the Revolver breakfast. Scrambled eggs on toast, chili beans simmered in crushed tomatoes, bacon and...that lovely little avocado + pesto combo.

- chunkytoast

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Thursday morning

reach for the toes
Originally uploaded by haydnfj
A quiet morning here on Carlisle Street. It is soupy humid out. The kind of humid where I put sheets to hang on the line and they just don't dry but stay sort of damp. Georgie seems to have discovered the wonder of her toes recently and is happy to grab them and have her own conversation of gibberish, so I'm perched on the couch and letting her entertain herself.

We might head out to the movies later because I am afraid we could get a bit housebound otherwise. The 'Babes in Arms' session is Eat, Pray, Love, which I don't really have much interest in due to the quasi--not-quite-new-age-self-help nature of the book. It was one of those everyone gushed about because the author went on such a soul searching journey when her marriage broke up. It all sounds rather indulgent if you ask me. But James Franco is in it, so there is that.

I remember Elizabeth Gilbert as a writer for SPIN when I used to subscribe to that in high school and college, before it shrunk and shrunk in size.

We'll see where the day takes us...
- chunkytoast

Monday, August 23, 2010

Reuben bagel at Bagel House, Rozelle

reuben bagel at bagel house
Originally uploaded by haydnfj
As any chunkytoast reader knows, upon my initial arrival in Australia, I was fixated on finding Mexican food. Without a substantial Mexican population, it turns out a country probably doesn't really have an established Mexican restaurant scene. While there still isn't anything of the more casual sitdown dining ilk like Madison's La Hacienda, Chicago's El Tapatio, or Manhattan's El Rey Del Sol (RIP) -- there is a movement in the more Qdoba part of the Mexican spectrum with Guzman and Gomez and a couple of places in Surry Hills that are always jam packed with hipsters/burrito enthusiasts on their way to somehere else..

But I digress...because the point of this post is that I have started to yearn for American diner food instead. Grilled cheese, Club sandwiches, crinkle fries, salads with glugs of Ranch dressing, little runny scoops of coleslaw, and the DILL PICKLE SPEAR. Alas, it is not a garnish here. So sad.

I got my Club sandwich fix (with battered fries!) a month ago at The Olive Cafe in little quaint Tamborine, Queensland. It was glorious. It got me thinking about another great sandwich: the Reuben. I have never been a huge Reuben enthusiast but have from time to time been compelled to order one. I'm not sure if it's the Swiss cheese or the sauerkraut that is the main drawcard but it's usually because of those fixings more than the pastrami.

After Georgie and I hit Monday 'mum and bub' yoga in Balmain, we usually go strolling down Darling Street to try a different coffee place and take a peak in at St Vinnie's and the Salvation Army shop. I have been eying Bagel House for a few weeks and decided to try it today. It's very basic, all take away but with a few tables inside. There are a number of bagel options (sesame, onion, everything) but it seems like there aren't flavored cream cheeses - just plain.

Interestingly, Bagel House has a Reuben 'bagelwich' on the menu. I mulled over the menu options and decided to go for it. And it was a treat. Of course it's not really true deli / diner style but who cares - there are pickles that aren't Gerkins finally! And the Swiss cheese was so melty. The sauerkraut did what it is suppose to do and add a little zing. And the pastrami was good without being piled on too thick. The 'everything' aspect of the bagel was very much to my liking too.

I had Georgie asleep in the Baby Bjorn so I put a napkin over her head so that it wasn't covered in poppy and sesame seeds by the time Mama finished her lunch!

-- chunkytoast

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Flat White in Surry Hills and sunshine in Leichhardt

Just enjoying a bit of quiet time here on a Thursday afternoon. Trying to get nap times carved into the day. It's not very easy if Georgie isn't in her pram or in the Baby Bjorn, but we're getting there.

I'm having a listen to Bon Iver's For Emma, Forever Ago. Haven't listened to it in forever and heard it playing at the cinema this afternoon as we left after seeing Cairo Time. While I think of the album as a winter album because it was recorded in a cabin in Northern Wisconsin during the coldest of months, it is really hitting the spot on a warm, windy afternoon. The doors to the backyard are open and the sun is coming in.

I'm not actually having the pictured flat white as I write, it was a coffee Haydn had on Saturday at a cafe in Surry Hills. I just love it when they do the little flourish in the coffee. I take it to mean there is a genuine barista at the the helm of the espresso machine. Sometimes it might just mean they have that little stenicil/motif tool to pour milk over. I'll go with the former.

Hoping that if nap time gets instituted in increments of longer than 20 minutes, I can get a bit back into the blogging more regularly too. Time to flex some creative muscles, write down some thoughts and put it out there.

-- chunkytoast

Thursday, August 05, 2010

First time at Straddie

walk on the beach
Originally uploaded by haydnfj
Georgie and I have been in Queensland for almost two weeks now while Haydn went to work on the Splendour in the Grass Festival. Haydn's parents have been taking very good care of me and Georgie. We headed to our beloved Stradbroke Island on Monday and Haydn joined us on Tuesday for a few precious days of leisure for him.

I took this picture this afternoon on a nearly deserted beach. In the summer, this stretch of beach is full of walkers, dogs, runners, swimmers, and sand castle builders but in the off-season, it's pretty quiet. The days have been sunny, low 20s C / 70s F and pretty mild. Yesterday we spotted whales in the distance and pairs of dolphins doing summersaults in the waves.

For the pic, Georgie is sporting her "Paris Hilton traveling tracksuit," as a Qantas flight attendant noted, and cuddled up with her Daddy. She falls asleep in the Baby Bjorn on average in 10 minutes. But maybe this time it was the fresh ocean air that lulled her to sleep.


Saturday, July 17, 2010

pooped out

pooped out
Originally uploaded by haydnfj
This photo was so funny. We were checking out the old wares at Doug Up On Bourke and Georgie was very well behaved while perusing the library card catalogue cabinets, old school desks, and kitchen bric a brac. As we headed down the stairs to leave, I was behind Haydn and could watch as her eyes went droopy and more droopy til they were closed. Asleep.

This little way she likes to be held we call her Koala or Koalie pose. At 11+ weeks it's the new way to hold her when she needs a cuddle. Works wonders.


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

she seems to like the sling!

It's a rainy day. The plan was to do some housework - I kept her in the sling and plugged in the vacuum and voila! she snoozed away - eat lunch, afternoon feed, a bit of time to be restless and then plop her in the pram and head down Norton Street.

But wow, it's really raining. So I'm watching Relocation Relocation with the space heater cranked. Georgie is sleeping in the vibrating chair. Oops, Georgie is waking up from the vibrating chair.

It's nice to have these rainy days though. How often when it rains and you're at work do you go thru the whole "I want to be at home with my remote control and a blanket,"? And here we are, comfy and dry at home. Now, we just need to stay content. It's all hour by hour these days...

- chunkytoast

Thursday, May 13, 2010

big enough to wear some new clothes

Georgie Frances Johnston in her new onesie and generally enjoying life at 2 weeks old.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Chicken and Leek Pie

Originally uploaded by haydnfj
I have officially become a housewife for the next 9 months. But as I'm also nearly 9 months pregnant, I'm not really fulfilling my job description unless you count the whole bon bons and daytime tv part of it. In other words, Haydn is doing a the majority of cooking and cleaning and various furniture assembly duties.

On Saturday night, he made this chicken and leek pie from a Curtis Stone recipe. There's nothing quite like something savory baking in the oven on an autumn evening. It gets dark early and the anticipation for dinner sets in. The leeks, grain mustard and tarragon are what make it flavorful and comforting. Delicious.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Baby indie cred thx to Kara

The smaller Converse All Stars to be found in New South Wales. Sourced by the lovely Kara.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Flat white artistry!

Flat white artistry!
Originally uploaded by haydnfj
I've been apartment hunting the last 4 weekends...the last three on my own while Haydn has been on Big Day Out. For the most part, it's been a series of mild disappointments. You are ready to pay more for more space, more amenities and yet there are many a cruddy apartment out there masquerading as something special based on the online real estate photos.

Well, this morning I nearly hit a wall when I found a beautiful apartment, in a really nice location, with closets and a dishwasher and a car spot and...up on a 5th floor building with no elevator.

I asked the realtor if I missed an elevator by chance and he said no, but I could quit my gym membership if I moved in. I told him I'll be pushing a pram (stroller) around in a few months so the stairs make things a bit hard. Then some old broad who had been gabbing away to him said the stairs were all the more reason to get the kid walking early.

And with that, I said thank you and sought a bit of peace and quiet at the lovely little Bondi Junction cafe, Sugar. Peaceful, friendly and a menu with many options. I ordered a BLAT and a coffee. When the coffee arrived, I couldn't help but feel very thankful for that little bit of beauty the barista gave it.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Polly's taco dip

Polly's taco dip
Originally uploaded by haydnfj
It's Australia Day, a nice hot sunny day and there is a helicopter circling Bondi Beach with an enormous Australian flag. I keep thinking there must be shark patrol, but nope, it's just a huge flag. The upstairs neighbors are playing crappy 90s music, singing loudly and it smells like an ashtrash has been dumped on my front step.

And it's only 1:20 pm. Happy Australia Day!

I think getting out of this neck of the woods and heading to Liesl's party in Paddington will save the day. As will my mom's blue ribbon taco dip.

- chunkytoast