Thursday, May 31, 2012

What I've enjoyed this month: May 2012

May has been a month of cooler nights paired with brilliant sunshine during the day. There has been a work trip to Sydney, some recipe hits and misses, lots of running (more on that tomorrow), lots of planning (wedding and otherwise), and new chocolate discoveries.

Here are some specific things that I've enjoyed.

Lemon

The combination of the lemon tart I made for bookclub and a current cold (which is making citrus look particularly appealing) has led to a renewed love of lemon of late.


This was aided by the fact that the the lemon tart froze brilliantly. I put the last few leftover slices in the freezer, and the filling turned to a creamy, mousse-like frozen lemon dessert. I see a recipe variation coming up soon, because I really want to eat it again!


Sweet potato and edamame beans


These are two vegetables that I go through stages with.

Sometimes I can't get enough of them, and then I generally over-dose and need a break before they appeal again.

Right now? Definitely in the 'can't get enough' stage.





More work lunches

I talked earlier in the month about trying to get more balance into my work lunches. Your ideas and suggestions following the post were incredibly helpful, and it sounds like many of you rely on leftovers to keep lunch time varied.
Colourful stirfry, thanks to purple carrots and yellow capsicum

I've continued with that stance, and am also getting better at quick 'throw together in the morning' mixes. Yesterday's lunch was made before work in under 5 minutes: chickpeas and corn with salsa layered under spinach leaves, paired with some wrap bread.


In truth, no more difficult than cereal.

Finally getting to some 'classic' books on my To Read list

I read Cold Comfort Farm (Stella Gibbons) when I was in Sydney, and I'm now a few chapters into The Mill on the Floss (George Elliot). I've always read a lot, but my reading of older books has been a bit patchy and these two have been on my bedside table for a while now.


Now I just need more time to read this one...

(More) chocolate discoveries

In addition to the new Lindt blocks, I found this range of dairy-free chocolate-covered fruit:


Miss Sweetie Yum Fruits. In addition to the dark chocolate coated dried grapes (sultanas, for us Australians), the range includes dark chocolate coated grapes with honey (not sure of the difference to the plain grape variety...), dark chocolate coated apricot, and dark chocolate coated mango.

The grape variety was highly enjoyable, and unlike certain chocolate brands, there is no unnecessary dairy. The price is a bit steep at $4.95 for a 100g pack, but comes in as just about justifiable for an occasional treat. These are popping up at independent supermarkets around me so I imagine they are Australia wide.

Now, it would seem, we are up to June, and I have no idea how this is the case. None at all.

What has May looked like for you? And are you a reader of classics, or mostly modern fiction?

17 comments:

  1. That chocolate sounds great. I haven't seen it in Sydney but I'll have to look out for it. You are right - you don't need dairy in chocolate! I haven't cooked with endames but notice they are popping up in recipes everywhere. I must give them a try. xx

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    1. Actually, I haven't cooked with them either - I tend to eat them straight from the pod! I should really get around to trying them in recipes too.

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  2. There'll be no butter in hell!

    Definitely both modern and classic in my world.

    Also, for crying out loud, "grape"? That's almost as bad as that recent push to call prunes "dried plums". Call a spade a spade! :P

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    1. Oh so true - and in this case, worse than dried plums, because they didn't actually specify dried grapes on the packet. Indeed, they write "whole juicy grapes"! Oh marketing, how I dislike you.

      I figured you would have both book bases covered :)

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  3. I love reading EVERYTHING. Some of my favorites are classics, some are randoms. It depends on my mood at the time!!

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    1. Sounds like a perfect approach!

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  4. I love your quick work lunches - I really have to grab something - though I can throw together a good sandwich if everything is there!

    Do you have a good source of endamame - I don't think they have it in the supermarket so we only eat it when I remember to buy it at odd places.

    I confess to starting a George Eliot novel (middlemarch) once and never finishing it - though I have often started books only to putter out and pick them up another time and love them - maybe one day. Haven't read much older literature lately - would love to read more jane austen but I don't fancy losing another summer to a doorstopper like Le Miserables (much as I loved reading it).

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    1. I will confess to reading about a quarter of Le Miserables as a teenager and not getting any further than that! It is such a dense book! I'm impressed you persevered over summer - I think I could give it another go in winter time in front of a fire, but even that seems a tad daunting.

      It took me ages to find edamame, but it turns out that most reasonably sized Asian supermarkets stock them in the frozen section. There are a couple not too far from me so I just have to remind myself to visit them - I also find them quite cheap relative to other vegetables, and they're so easy to prepare.

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  5. I definitely read a lot of modern stuff, but I'm really trying to round out my classics knowledge. I love the orange pengins classics, they just have everything.

    I'm with you on the lemon, I think I will be making these again on the weekend, so easy, so very, very yummy. http://www.eatliverun.com/big-sur-lemon-bars/

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    1. The orange penguin classics provided me with Cold Comfort Farm :) It is lovely having such an accessible range to remind me of what I haven't read.

      Those lemon bars look wonderful! Thanks for the link - I may have to give them a whirl and experiment with egg options :)

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  6. there really can never be too many ways to reuse and reinvent chocolate!! :) May looks like a tasty month to u and i'm a huge fan of stir fries too! may for me was a reintroduction to the track for me! yay and OUCH! ;) but it hurts so good...lol

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    1. Sometimes there is a perverse pleasure in pain! I hope those work outs get easier though.

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  7. I went through a big phase of reading classics when I was commuting to work on public transport but these days I don't find enough time to read. I'll have to get back into it one day. I go through phases with edamame too!

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    1. I always used to envy people who could read on buses / trains. I have only ever commuted using buses and I always seemed to get nauseous if I tried to read!

      Glad I'm not the only one who had intermittent edamame bursts :P

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    2. Ooh - I'm with you on the bus-suck thing. I would love to be able to read in cars and on buses, but it does not end well.

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  8. Where do you get your edamame? I can't seem to find it here, but I also don't look very hard. I've actually just planted some soy beans in the garden. I don't know if we have the climate for them to produce, but at the very least the plants will make good nutritious mulch and compost.

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    1. Do you have any Asian supermarkets / grocers in your vicinity? I've always found mine there, in a freezer section. Often even the tiny stores stock them but I've never seen them at regular supermarkets. How cool would it be if you grew your own though?!

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