What We Ate This Week- Pasta, Melbourne, Tennis and More!

So you may want to grab a cup of tea before you start reading, while the East Coast of the US has been freezing under a blanket of snow, we’ve been eating.  In the last 10 days, we’ve been eating and drinking- A LOT- and it’s all been pretty amazing.  So make yourself comfortable, this is a longer than normal post.

We’ve been in Melbourne for the last few days watching tennis and trying out the local restaurant scene- and the food down there is amazing!  I can honestly say in the last week, I’ve had two of the best meals ever- one in Sydney and one in Melbourne.   It’s been a great food week! Continue reading


So much has happened…. well, no, not really.

It’s been a pretty quiet week in the He Runs, I Cook household this week.  Other than steak last night and possibly pork tonight, I haven’t cooked a thing– very rare!  I haven’t even made it past Episode 2 of Masterchef Professionals so you know I’ve been busy!

Well, that and The Runner has been watching tennis all week.

When last I left you, we had just landed in Melbourne for a whirlwind, action packed weekend.  Well… Melbourne was awesome!    The Runner is tired of me saying this, because I probably said it about 100 times over the weekend, but I could easily live in Melbourne.  It’s such a great city for lots of stuff- especially food.  The Runner and I had a great time, he had the best Hot Chocolate of his life and I had the best sugar I’ve ever tasted.  Image

No, Seriously don’t laugh, I did!  It even looked yummy in the mini mortar sugar bowl and it was really sweet— don’t laugh at the blatantly obvious statement, but it was so sweet and so good!Image  (It was at Cafe Vue on St. Kilda Rd if you’re curious) 

I also had some super delish Croque Monsieurs (yes, plural, I had two in two days.  Don’t judge me– you never see them on the menu in Sydney).  We found a delightful little wine bar, Enoteca, in Fitzroy- a neighbourhood I LOVE!  Both The Runner and I managed to avoid temptation on Ackland Rd in St. Kilda.  I’ve never seen so many cake shops on one street, there were about 5 in a row, if not more and they all had windows piled high with yummy looking cakes.  I think it’s where Hansel and Gretel got lost and the witch tried to fatten them up.  I was tempted but I knew we had Mamasita planned for dinner and I didn’t want to ruin my appetite.  Mamasita by the way was good– not sure it would have been as good if we had waited for 90 minutes but it was good. 

The best part of the whole weekend……  The Runner let me go to Books for Cooks.

A word on Books for Cooks.  

Overwhelming.  Too much of a good thing is…  

A combination of heaven and hell.   Seriously, it was amazing but awful at the same time.  Literally, for a cookbook tragic like myself it was just too much.  I was overwhelmed, I didn’t know where to start or where to end or where to look.  It was literally a whole store full of cookbooks….and it wasn’t just new books, it was a combination of rare books, new books, used books,  anything and everything kitchen or garden or cooking related was there. (However, they didn’t have Spoonbread and Strawberry Wine so ha!)  I think I nearly hyperventilated.Image

I felt like Alice in Wonderland but it was too much.  I highly recommend it– as long as you have a few hours, thousands of dollars and no Runner reminding you that you have other places to be.  In the end, I selected two books– one, totally quirky and random, and the other, I’ll probably actually use to cook….  

ImageDon’t ask me what made me buy The Dead Celebrity Cookbook.  I think I panicked slightly in there….The Mexican Food cookbook has serious potential given my addiction to Mexican food, but there was so much in there, so much to choose from…..so many cookbooks, so little time.

So, in a nutshell, that was our trip to Melbourne.  Thanks to The Blackman Hotel for being a lovely place to stay.  We’ve now stayed at all three Art Series Hotels in Melbourne, and we love all three…. although there is some debate about what to do for next year.  I loved our weekend away, and am looking forward to Australia Day Weekend this weekend…..I’m making Cupcakes!!!!!!!  (BTW, you’re supposed to have Oprah’s voice in your head when you read that… try again) I’m Making CUPCAKES!!!!!!!!!!!!  (Better!)


Oh yeah, and we saw some tennis too while we were there….an unknown player named Roger…. it was pretty good!Image


Hello Melbourne!

Believe it or not before The Runner was a runner, he was a tennis player- and if his accounts are to be believed he wasn’t half bad. I grew up playing tennis too, mainly because of the cute outfits, lack of contact with dirt and mud and lack of contact with other players– yes, I am a girlie girl! There’s no denying or hiding it.

Tennis has always been a favourite sport of mine, apparently my parents used to put my stroller next to the court while they played and when I could walk I had my first job as a target, i mean ballkid. When I was about 4 or 5, I remember my Dad buying me my first tiny wooden Wilson junior racket and trying to teach me the first principle of the game- bounce and hit. I got the basics but never really progressed further than that despite years of tennis camp and playing on the high school tennis team. The Runner, on the other hand, was ranked as a junior player and can do all sorts of things like hit with spin and control where the ball goes on the court– Every Time! The Mom still plays as well, weekly even- in fact everyone in my family plays.

So it is really exciting that one of the annual traditions for The Runner and I is to come down to Melbourne for the Australian Open. It’s a great weekend away not just because we get to see the best players in the world (Tomic v Federer tonight!) but also because the food in Melbourne is crazy good! Last year we went to an amazing Latin American/mexican place in Fitzroy that my taste buds are still excited for even though I’ve forgotten the name. We also went to Naked for Satan which was an awesome bar with great flavoured vodkas. And Hardware Society, an awesome spot for breakfast. In short, it’s a place I could eat my way through if money and personal appearance didn’t matter. There are also amazing shops and it’s a great place to hang out.

For the next 36 hours, we’re here for the tennis and for the food and I’m excited!!! There are two downsides- one, it’s super cold and two, The Runner has already banned me from a shop. It’s called Books for Cooks and sells nothing but cookbooks. Sounds like heaven, but I’ve been told I’m not allowed in! Oh well….. There are plenty of other places I can get into mischief… And they have a website!
books for cooks