Sunday, February 28, 2010

Bali Part I

Seems like ages since I posted! Every now and then blogger doesn't recognise any of the new photos that I upload and I have to restart my computer. But to restart my computer means I have to close the million and one web page tabs that I have opened! So that's why I haven't posted. Good enough reason?

Anyway, finally a post about Bali. As I've gone to type this I have remembered that half of the photos are on the little netbook that I took with me (I missed my Mac though!) so I'll have to get my act together and transfer them onto my Mac and post again.

When we first arrived in Bali it was early in the day and we needed to wait until the afternoon to get into our rooms. What better way to waste a day than in the pool around the bar! The girls were itching for a coconut drink and spend their first rupiahs on one.

Next door the the hotel (we stayed at Bali Garden) was a restaurant that had vegan food specifically labelled on the menu.

Both of these dishes were very nice but it was expensive and not local food. The downfall of the restaurant (well all of them in fact) was that smoking was allowed at the tables. So my inconsiderate sister and B-I-L decided to chain smoke between dishes (and thoughtfully shared the smoke) and I found that really disgusting! Not only were my 3 children there, but also my nephew (my sister's boy), my second cousin (who's about 5) plus my mother and myself who are non smokers! So very rude I thought!

A few days after getting there we found the delicious and cheap local food and gave all the deep fried Western food a miss (sorry, most photos on the netbook!). Eventually we found this amazing fruit salad, which cost well less than $A1!

Jump forward to the last day and the girls decided to get their hair plaited before we left. We also got manicures and I got a pedicure. YM just got bored!

Don't think that YM missed out! He and I spent a few hours together surfing!
Mum and son time!

Sorry that it is such a jumbled post! I took 2 cameras with me - a little point-and-shoot as well as my good camera. I started off with my good camera but I found it way too much trouble to carry it around in the heat and changed to my little camera. That's why the photos are a bit higglty pigglty but I'll fill in the gaps on the next post.


Thursday, February 11, 2010

Hearty Breakfasts

I recently told you about how we are having a hearty breakfast in the mornings, a good-sized lunch and a small dinner. It seems to be working really well and the kids are loving the lunches that don't involve sandwiches!

Here are some breakfasts we have been enjoying.

This was amazingly delicious! I was inspired by Green and Crunchy's breakfast sundae post and made it for us all. So good! This will definitely be on our regular rotation. Very sweet - just the way I like it!

This were called Johnny Cakes and they come from 1000 Vegan Recipes by Robin Robertson. They were made with polenta and were good! Robin suggests drizzling them with maple syrup, but I had none, so I sprinkled them with coconut sugar.

I like breakfast muffins. These again came from Robin Robertson's creative mind and were Banana and Walnut Breakfast Muffins. I had no walnuts so I used almonds. And I actually forgot to add the sugar into them and they were still good.

This morning I made 2 giant batches of pancakes - one lot of Flaxseed Blueberry and the other was Spiced Banana, both from Robin again but this time from her Vegan Planet book. I didn't take a picture because I was running a bit late as I was heading off to my first day back to work.

Notice a theme here? They are all sweet! We do actually have savoury types of breakfasts, like scrambles, but we much prefer the sweeter side of life.

On another topic, Girl on Raw has a giveaway from Living Raw Magazine Australia. Go check it out if you want to win!


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Tempeh Shopping

Last weekend I wanted to test out a dish that I am hoping to take to Steph and Danni's Chinese New Year's Eve vegan pot luck (is that still on???) and I needed tempeh. I was sure that last time I purchased said product it was from the Wooloworths/Safeway down the road. Obviously not!

Panicked, and wondering where the hell I got it from, I called on my old friend, the internet. Nothing came up locally (there MUST be more than 1 decent health food shop in my locality!), but I was inspired to jump in my car (seriously! I NEVER use my car!) and head to Vincent Vegetarian Food in Footscray.

My trusty GPS showed me the way and before I knew it, I was staring at freezers and shelves lined with mock meats! Now, I have had this discussion before somewhere, but my take on the whole mock meat thing is this: I am not trying to replace anything that I 'gave up', rather I find it fascinating and exciting that we have the ability to create some really amazing foods. I don't even dwell on the fact that it is supposed to represent meat in any way, I just enjoy the novelty (which is another point about processed foods - it is something we do very infrequently). So what I am trying to say is DON'T HATE.

Anyways, I picked up a couple of things (how could I not, especially after driving there) as well as the mysterious tempeh.

I made a rather tasty coconut cream dish with the 'seafood' and also tried out the pot luck dish (which was a keeper, too). I bought the packet of BBQ Char Siew (Siu) to try as Steph tried the one I usually use and said it was average. And since I am definitely NO expert on Char Siu, I thought I would try another brand!

Can anyone tell me of a closer place to purchase tempeh and other goodies instead of having to use my car to go to Footscray? I'm looking at Preston, Northcote, Thornbury, Brunswick, even Fitzroy areas (as a matter of fact, I can go as far as the city, I can ride my bike that far!). I know there are plenty out there, but because I am relatively new here (BTW how long can I get away with saying that? I've been in the Northern Suburbs for a year now and Melbourne for two years. Is it time to stop the helpless newbie victim talk??) I do not know where they are and which ones are good. It is usually only by the roll of the internet that I stumble across anything.

Now I know you are waiting for my Bali post(s), but the truth is that I am putting it off because of sheer laziness! I have to transfer the photos from my little net book (so no disk drive) to my Mac and although it probably will be quite quick and simple, I haven't got my head in that space yet. Nearly...


Friday, February 5, 2010

First Tiffin Lunch and First Day Back to School

Hey all! We are back!

We got back very, very early Wednesday morning and I have spent the last few days catching up on some sleep (and washing!!). More about Bali, our holiday and their food next time.

Today the kids went back to school. They really wanted to go yesterday but they were still up and down at all hours of the night before that, so I let them sleep in and they didn't wake up until well after 11am!

I got up early this morning to prepare some lunch, then breakfast for the day. For lunch I roasted some cauliflower, steamed some broccoli and made a batch of mac 'n cheeze to put in their tiffins.

YM's tiffin is made up ready for school in the back and Baby's tiffin has been pulled apart to show the contents.
As it is the first time we have used them, I am not sure how warm they will keep the food (although my kids will eat this stuff cold anyways) nor do I know how secure the tiffins themselves are (fingers crossed for no mess in school bags!). If it doesn't keep the food at least a little warm, then it isn't really much better than individual containers (except that I am not using plastic). I'll keep you informed.

I briefly met the kids' teachers this morning. I mentioned to Tweenie's teacher that I would be back in in a week or so to have a chat to him. He said that parent/teacher conferences were coming up in a few weeks anyway. I said that's fine, but I wanted to discuss stuff other than education such as our veganism and I got an odd look! The look said 'I have no idea what you are talking about'!! At least it wasn't 'bloody crazy hippy'! so there is a little hope!

Well, I still have a lot of housework catch-up to do around here. Back to it.