don’t sweat the technique

Back in May, we were utterly bedazzled by this method of cooking steak (and the wonderfully wonderful photos) on Amy’s most excellent blog.

Tonight it was way too cold to step outside to the bbq, so we we finally gave it a bash.

Wow. Amazing results – the perfect steak.

And while you think there would be a good deal of smoke, there was barely a wisp – certainly much less than using oil in the cast iron pan. Though our much-better-than-we’ve-ever-had exhaust fan helped, I’m sure.

We’ll be sticking to this.

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foodly happenings

As you will no doubt be aware, we abandoned wcoic 2014 after the group stage because life kind of got in the way and we rarely had a quorum of bodies in ThePalace(OfLove) to make seeking out recipes worthwhile.

But we’ve still been making an effort to try new things. When we were meal-planning, Joe/Frank suggested duck and pineapple red curry from the really excellent abc delicious: more please

I was somewhat doubtful because of the pineapple, but it was amazingly good, extremely simple and so very quick!

We halved the recipe and it was perfect for the 3 of us. Essentially half a bbq duck, some red curry paste, coconut cream, lemon-grass, spring onions, lime leaves, brown sugar and fish sauce in a wok.

Perfect Friday night food – this will be entering the repertoire.


Bessie was keen to expand her cooking repertoire from all-cakes/bikkies/slices-all-the-time and branched out into crackers. Don is in heaven!

crackers with zataar, thyme and fennel seeds

Really delicious! I (along with my waistline) will be delighted to follow the savoury adventure.


And last evening, Don cooked us an amazing corned beef which he’d been brining/pickling all week. I believe mostly from Ruhlman’s Charcuterie

I cannot even convey how wonderful it was. Surely the best corned beef we’ve ever had.


And while cooking, as ever, we’re surrounded by adorable, always-hungry kitties:

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7kg medicine balls

Buildings of Bourke Street Mall

Yesterday I ducked out of SML a little early to catch-up for drinks with Dishy(ex)Boss who was down from bucolic spendor for the afternoon. We’d been in periodic email contact, but I’d not actually seen him since, I think, April 2013. He kept remarking how wonderful I looked – probably because the last time he saw me I had only just started to lose some kg and still rather resembled a pudding. We barely drew breath in the time we were together. It was so, so brilliant to see him. We were both a bit “squeeeee – this is so great!” and we’re making a boozy lunch date for some time in September. I really very much miss having him around.

Unfortunately one of the side-effects of the catching up was that I had the teensiest hangover this morning and my session with the FatController was hard (well, it is always hard). I’m 6 sessions in now and he commented on how much I had improved in that time (though obviously there was no jumping involved – I still suck massively at that). Because he is always sneakily ramping up the weights and difficulty I barely notice any improvement because it always hard, so it was excellent to hear. Five more sessions remain of my block, but I’m definitely going to take another block of 10.

As a consequence of the impossible training session (which involved hauling the GiantTyre via the GiantRope up a great height & using the sledgehammer), I am completely exhausted and have pretty much resembled a sloth for most of the day. Apart from essentials, very little has been actioned. Well, apart from the couple of hours spent ridding my computer of the rather nasty and intractable malware infection which Don inadvertently gave it last evening while watching the british open. Clearly TheUniverse was trying to tell me to back up my files to the external HD, though the 19 hours it claims are remaining is not a little daunting!

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50before50 (2)

Buildings of Bourke Street Mall: Diamond House

I’ve been horrid about getting to the gym during the week (forever), so told myself if I made it there this evening for a short, sharp burst of cardio, I could reward myself with a glass (or two) of wine.

Worked brilliantly.


And I’ve been giving a little more thought, in an idle kind of way, to the 50 things to do before I turn 50 (1,230 days) project.

Already on the list:

  1. visit Vietnam and Cambodia
  2. run in a half-marathon
  3. participate two runs (of any distance) that are not in Sydney
  4. stay (well) under 70kg (154lbs) for the next 1,254 days
  5. gtfo of SML (or resign myself to seeing out my days there and shut the hell up about the horror)
  6. 100 proper push-ups in a row (currently I can do about 5, okay probably 3)
  7. sign up for a pilates class(es)
  8. make a patchwork quilt
  9. make a garment for myself and wear it (pyjama pants don’t count)

    And adding to the list

  10. visit Japan
  11. build a wee model boat (still so bitter that my parents would not allow me to buy a kit)
  12. go skiing
  13. complete the painting of ThePalace(OfLove)
  14. see a decent production of Macbeth
  15. construct something with electricity – building a computer doesn’t count
  16. learn to complete a cryptic crossword

34 items to go!

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cost cutting

Today it was so utterly freezing at SML, actually colder indoors than it was outside, that I was forced to Hot Dollar to buy a $10 blanket to cover my shivering, blue-fingered self.

Then I sat about like a Nanna.

Unfortunately there were no meetings to take blankie along to, but there is always tomorrow when I have a three hour process review workshop.


Tonight we dragged the babies out to the very excellent Oxford Tavern to celebrate Joe/Frank’s first day at TAFE and Bessie’s impending first semester university results.

You may recall that the venue was until relatively recently a notorious strip club, so I was delighted to encounter a geniously appropriate swizzle stick in my mojito:

We should do this much more frequently.

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teeny teeth marks everywhere

I’m currently sitting about recovering from my 10km run on the treadmill this morning, the running of which was just as boring as you’d imagine. Once I get past the first 35min I find I settle in and lose the “I really hate running on the treadmill” thing … slightly. I feel very virtuous.

Last evening we dragged ourselves out to watch the Ducks play Carlton with around 34.5k other people.

It was very cold:

And then it got colder (blanket not pictured):

The Ducks won convincingly after a very, very slow start. That makes 12 wins in a row, the first time since 1935. If this keeps up we may make the Grand Final – and Holy!Goodness! we have vowed to not miss out on attending another one – hang the cost.

We arrived home about an hour after the usual evening kitty feeding time and they were obviously very glad to see us. While they were waiting they had attempted to fend for themselves by opening Don’s bedside drawer, dragging out two bags of kitty treats and chewing through the plastic! Clever monsters.

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Buildings of Bourke Street Mall

I think Saturday mornings are now my (almost) favourite time of the week. I adore seeing what sort of impossible activities the FatController has dreamed up for me. It is such hard work and I was so utterly exhausted at the end of the today’s session that when we were boxing I forgot the duck in the left, right, duck, right and was duly punched in the head. Fortunately it was more funny than anything.

Afterward, Don and I went to ikea to pick up some led bulbs for the new lights in the bedroom (which we will have to return because they are weirdly sized and don’t fit) and bunnings for some painting supplies and such for the rusty balcony. There was not a great deal of achieving on my part other than that. Don attacked the rusty balcony with a wire brush and applied rust converter. I lolled about on the InformationSuperHighway and did the guardian quick crossword.

I blame exhaustion for the fact that I washed a new white dress together with a new navy dress. I now have a new grey-ish dress.

Ducks game tonight. I’m really not feeling it, but will go along (and freeze) anyway.

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