A Thank You Post/Tuesday Night Dinner

So…. as you may have heard on the grapevine, The Runner and I got engaged a few months ago… don’t laugh, I did apparently have 1 Facebook friend who somehow hadn’t heard last week.  Weird.  Very weird– and actually it’s more of a Facebook acquaintance, but I digress.  So, we had our engagement party last Saturday night- and it was AMAZING!  

It really was fantastic.  There’s something about having more than 50% of the people who you consider close friends in one room at the same time that is just amazing.  It was a really special night.    We were lucky enough to receive some very nice presents from our lovely friends so this week, I’ve been writing my Thank You notes like a good little girl.  Yes, Mommy, you raised me well!

We love all of the gifts we received, but I’m actually using one tonight so I wanted to say a big thank you to the person who gave it because although cards are nice, there’s no better way to show how much you appreciate something than to actually use it!  

PS-No offense to anyone else who is wondering why you haven’t seen us making pancakes, drinking champagne or red wine, burning candles, or using your gifts too.

 I’ve been DYING to try my hand at pie making– like proper, savoury pie making.  Definitely not something I grew up with in the US– unless you count frozen pot pies, which were not awful, but not exactly gourmet.  Savoury pies are extremely Irish/English/Australian and I’ve been meaning to try one for a while….. Small footnote, I didn’t actually grow up baking sweet pies either- we were more of a cake family (not really), but that’s a different story for a different day.  

But finally, I can (hopefully) bake a nice, delicious chicken or steak or pork pie for dinner.  Well, let’s face it I may not be able to but at least the pie will look appealing in a gorgeous pie plate.

So a big thank you to my favourite Doctor and one of my best friends for the gorgeous pie dish– notice how there is a cute saying at the bottom.  One day, I’m sure my daughter will look at it and say it’s so retro….sigh.  Thank you to Bill Granger, my favourite Aussie Chef, for what hopefully will be a  really tasty pie recipe.  It’s from his book Feed Me Now, which will be exactly what The Runner says when he gets home from training in 45 minutes!  I should probably stop writing and finish cooking!

I won’t go on too much about how much I adore Bill Granger’s cookbooks and his restaurant Bills, but  I don’t think I’ve ever had a kitchen disaster using one of his cookbooks.   I can’t even think of anything that’s been questionable out of one….. so I’m pretty sure this pie will be at least a 6/10 for taste and a 10/10 for looks!



Wish me luck!


NSFW- Topless pie shot below!






And yes, based on how good this pie looks, I’d totally want to marry me too!


Now to make a salad, pour a glass of wine and try to undertake the mammoth task of putting music onto my new phone…

Do you Fondue??

We do!  Or at least we will be shortly.  

You may remember from my post on chili con carne that fondue is one of my absolute all time favourite foods, and one of the foods that according to my mother is a “winter only” food.    Well, seeing as we only have 5 more weeks of winter — and the weather hasn’t exactly been wintry– I figured that tonight would be fondue night!

I will admit to taking the lazy route– although I have made my own cheese fondue before– and it’s delish.  I’m not tonight. Our local deli in Randwick sells fondue in a box and that’s what  we’re test driving tonight.



I know, it’s pathetic for a girl with three fondue cookbooks to use fondue in a box and I really should make it from scratch, but it’s been a hectic few weeks and fondue making was not on my agenda for tonight.

In truth, I would LOVE to find a good fondue restaurant in Sydney so that we could actually have three courses of fondue– cheese, meat, and chocolate– because let’s face it, I LOVE fondue.  I went to one years and years ago– Eiger Swiss on Parramatta Road, and it was….obviously not somewhere I’ve been back to in the last 10 years…..hmmmm.  

 First hurdle- apparently Sterno is virtually unheard of in Sydney– or at least in the four shops including Coles and Woolies that I went to.  I asked and got completely blank looks– even though one store actually sells fondue pots and the other is a kitchenware store.  So, we’re going to try menthylated spirits and hope that we don’t burn the house down in the process.


Secondly, I don’t have fondue plates.  Yes, there is such a thing and yes, my mother, goddess of all kitchen utensils, has them– a whole set from the 1970s, and they’re super cool.  I envy them and covet them, but sadly don’t have my own.Image



So fingers crossed everything else will go to plan and we’ll have a lovely evening of cheese fondue.  It’s been a big couple of weeks in our household.  I ordered my wedding dress yesterday (squee!!!!!!!!!!!!! excited!!!!!) and we had our engagement party last weekend (so much fun!) and now we’re on the 12 month countdown.  This time next year, I will be leaving Ireland to head to DC for our wedding….  Very exciting!  Must make a mental note to bring back Mom’s fondue plates next year…..shhhhh don’t tell her!