Friday, November 13, 2009

New friend II (Luca's cave + Napoli in Bocca + Jet's cafe + Menya)

Another day, Mr. B and I took a trip to Jenolan Caves by Train. I was so happy since I have been here, I have never been to somewhere outside Sydney (except Melbourne).

We catched a 7.15 am. train (so sleepy) and got off the train at one stop (forgot the name ^ ^'') then bought the ticket from the tour agent in that area. While waiting for the bus, just had a light breakfast in the cafe.

I didn't take many pictures at the cave since I felt that the pictures from my camera + my skill wouldn't turn out good anyway. Here are the pictures from Mr.B's (only the bottom left is from mine). Anyway, the picture that I took for him is not bad :P

We went back to the Strathfield and Mr's B friends picked us up and headed to Italian restaurant in Haberfield, Napoli in Bocca

Mukul & Megha

Couldn't remember much, but there were Veggie pizza, chicken and cheese and pumpkin ravioli.

The deco is so homely.

Such a nice meal but I had to quickly go back home since I had to work in the next day at 6.30 am. I missed desserts T_T

On the next Sunday, Mr.B had to buy some stuffs to take back to Thailand. We started our breakfast at Jet cafe since we wanted to have some nice iced coffee (and most of the cafes are closed on Sunday, poor Mr.B :P)

Turkish toast came out sadly hard and dry & the banana bread was like sitting there for a week ago.

Fortunately, our iced mocha was very nice... strong, (not too) sweet and creammy !

We walked a lot and bought so many things, our lunch was at Menya, my best ramen place that how come I have never blogged about it yet (I have never tried Ryo's noodle but keen to)

Chicken karaage & my mini rice with charshu pork.

The charshu pork and hard boiled egg on rice were delicious, only too little sauce on it.

Mr.B ordered dry spicy ramen and he was happily eating and said that it was the best meal he had in Sydney so far... ieie

His last day in Sydney, I came to meet him after finished working. Having a cup of tea and iced chocolate at Lindt cafe.

Chai latte & (one of)The best iced chocolate

Thanks Mr.B for giving me some my beautiful pictures from your DSLR lol

Napoli In Bocca
73 Dalhousie Street, Haberfield NSW 2045
Tel : (02) 9798 4096

Shop8tg / 8 Quay St, Haymarket, NSW
Tel : (02) 9212 1020

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

New friend I (Glebe St. Festival + Red chilli + Watson Bay + Pancake on the Rocks)

I found out that a couple years recently I always have new friends due to my blog and webboards (of course food-related). Most of them are very great friends and became my close friends now. This time again, one of my friend in Thailand introduced me to her friend, Mr.B, who is coming to Sydney for holiday. First we, Mr.B, P'Ta and I, went to Glebe Street Festival. (Some of pictures below are from Mr.B)

The weather was nice that day.

But there were not many food stalls which made us so disappointed. Most of them were clothes and accessories.

We ended up having a quick break at Clipper Cafe.

So happy having my pictures using DSLR camera..hahaha
We were still hungrily heading to China Town to find somethings to eat and chose Red Chilli Sichuan Restaurant.

Laziji : Deep fried chicken with dried chilli
Mapo Tofu: Hot and spicy silky tofu with minced pork
Stir fried Vegetables and pork.

My homemade Lemon tart & workplacemade Macarons :P
After late lunch, P' Ta went back home so Mr.B and I decided to go to Watson Bay (also my first time there)

My lemon tart & P'Ta's oreo mousse.

Then we took a ferry back to city arrived almost 8 pm. and had a light dinner at Pancake on the rock (it was my 2nd time after 2 years)

I like this picture taking by Mr.B (cuz my camera can't take like this)

At first time I had dinner here I thought it was just alright but this time it was worse..hehe. The pancake was far away from The Pancake Parlour in Melbourne.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Lemon Cream Tart II (Tartine recipe)

Obviously I am addict to making tarts now. After I still have lemon left from making the lemon tart from Bourke Street Bakery, I am keen to try other lemon tart from other recipes. One of them is from Tartine that I bought from Amazon long time ago but never tried to make any.

The actual Tartine Lemon cream tart is garnished with whipped cream but since I wanted to give it to my friends, its definitely easier to decorated with Italian meringue.

Sweet Tart Dough
by Tartine (for 9-inch tart shells or twelve 4-inch tartlet shells)

1 cup + 2 tbsp (9 oz/255 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup (7 oz/200 grams) sugar
1/4 tsp salt
2 large eggs, at room tempterature
3 1/2 cups (17 1/2 oz/500 grams) all-purpose flour

1. Using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter, sugar and salt and mix on medium speed until smooth.

2. Mix in 1 egg. Add the remaining egg and mix until smooth. Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula.

3. Add the flour all at once and mix on low speed just until incorporated.

On a lightly floured work surface, divide the dough into 4 equal balls and shape each ball into a disk 1/2 inch thick. Wrap well in plastic wrap and chill for at least 2 hours or overnight or freeze 3 for future use (this dough will keep for up to 3 weeks).

To line a tart pan, place a dough disk on a lightly floured surface and roll out 1/8 inch thick, rolling from the center toward the edge in all directions. Lift and rotate the dough a quarter turn after every few strokes, dusting underneath as necessary to discourage sticking, and work quickly to prevent the dough from becoming warm. Cut out a circle 2 inches larger than the pan. If the dough is still cool, carefully transfer the circle to the pan, easing it into the bottom and sides and then pressing gently into place. If the dough has become too soft to work with, put it in the refrierator for a few minutes to firm up before transferring it to the pan. If the dough develops any tears, just patch with a little extra dough, pressing firmly to adhere. Trim the dough level with the top of the pan with a sharp knife. Place the pastry shell in the refrigerator or freezer until it is firm, about 15 minutes.

If you are making tartlet shells, roll out the dough in the same way, cut out circles according to the size of your pans, and line the pans. The rest of the dough, including the scraps, can be frozen for future use. (from the pictures, I still got four 3.5-inch tart shells left in the freezer)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.

Dock (make small holes in) the bottom of the tart shell or tartlet shells with a fork or the tip of a knife, making tiny holes 2 inches apart. Place in the oven and bake for 7 to 10 minutes for a partially baked large shell or 5 to 7 minutes for tartlet shells. The pastry should be lightly coloured and look dry and opaque.

Let cool completely on wire racks. The pastry shells will keep, well wrapped, in the refrigerator for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 2 weeks.

Lemon Cream
by Tartine (about 2.5 cups /625 ml)

1/2 cup + 2 tbsp (5 oz/155 ml) lemon juice
3 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
3/4 cup (6 oz/170 g) sugar
pinch of salt
1 cup (8 oz/225 g) unsalted butter

1. Pour water to a depth of about 2 inches into a saucepan, place over medium heat, and bring to a simmer.

2. Combine lemon juice, whole eggs, yolk, sugar and salt in a stainless steel bowl on top of double boiler. Whisk ingredients constantly for 10-12 minutes until the mixture becomes very thick and registers 180F on a thermometer.

3. Remove the bowl from over the water and stirring from time to time to release the heat.

4. Meanwhile, cut butter into 1 tbsp-pieces. When the cream is ready, using either a regular blender, or an immersion blender, add 1 piece of butter at a time to lemon mixture, blending after each addition of butter. The cream will be pale opaque yellow, and quite thick.
You can use the cream immediately, or pour it into a storage container with a tight-fitting lid and refrigerate for up to 5 days.

Italian Meringue
by Bourke Street Bakery

200 g caster sugar, plus 20 g extra
100 ml water
4 egg whites

1. Put the sugar and water in a small heavy-based saucepan over high heat. Bring to the boil, stirring until the mixture boils, then stop stirring, as this will cause sugar crystals to form.

2. Brush the sides of the saucepan with a wet pastry brush every couple of minutes or when you see crystals starting to form. Allow the mixture to keep boiling until it reaches 118C on the thermometer, then remove from the heat immediately.

3. Put the egg whites in a very clean blowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Start mixing on high speed when the sugar reaches about 110c until the egg whites become foamy, then add the extra sugar and whisk until soft peaks form.

4. With the mixture still running on high, slowly pour the sugar syrup (118c) into the whites, adding care not to pour the syrup directly onto the beater to avoid spraying boiling syrup over yourself. Once all the syrup is added, turn the mixer to low speed and keep mixing for a further 10 - 15 minutes, or until the meringue is cool. (I used the hand mixture)

To assemble the lemon cream tart:

Have the tart shell ready for filling. Pour the lemon cream directly into the cooled tart shell. Shake the tart pan gently to smooth out the top of the filling. Chill the tart until firm, about 2 hours, before serving.

Use a piping bag to pipe the meringue onto the lemon tart, completely covering the top of the tart - then use a palette knife to create a less formal shape. Brown the meringue with a blowtorch or place it under a very hot grill for 30 - 45 seconds, or until browned - make sure you watch it carefully as it will burn very quickly.

I gave the big tarts to friends and leave the mini ones for my housemates... They looks so cute, aren't they?

Have to try one for myself of course, yummmmmm :D

Sunday, November 8, 2009


The night we had been waiting for, we, P'Ta, Ping, Betty and I went to Marque restaurant in Surry Hills because of the reputation of the head chef Mark Best, SMH Chef of the year 2010 . The degustation was not cheap - $145 per head, with matching wines a further $75 per head

6.30 pm. on Saturday 7 November 2009 was our booking time.

We were served with the opt between white sourdough bread & rye with caraway.. I went for both :P and a glass of white wine each. My wine was sauvingon blanc from France $22 (the most expensive glass-white wine on the list and the taste was not so different from others T_T)

The famous Chaud-Froid Free Range Egg served with salted grissini

I have no idea about the ingredients but it was sweet, salty, hot and cold all at once. I did enjoy eating it however I don't really know wheater I like or dislike it... Interesting !

Almond Jelly with Blue Swimmer Crab, Almond Gazpacho, Sweet Corn & Avruga

At first I didn't know it was sweet corn inside, I thought it was the egg yolk but taste was not ! I cound't remember about the almond jelly but I don't really like this dish since the crab was a bit too fishy for my liking. (but Ping loves it)

Cured Kingfish with Celery, Vanilla, Lime & Green Tea
The Kingfish was fresh as it should be, again we had the celery sorbet and it was very refreshing. The white thing is lime meringue which I like.

Steamed Scampi with "Fish Floss", Scampi Anglaise, Campari & Turnip
The scampi was lovely texture, very fresh, well accompany with the earthy thin slices of mushroom. The tiny cubes of turnip soaked in bitter bitter Campari was quite strong. (too bitter for me)

New Season White Asparagus, Duck Ham, Duxelle, Parmesan and Potato

Can you see how pretty the dish was? The asparagus was soooooo flavourful. and duck ham gave the saltiness to the dish. I like the very crisp thin purple potato.

Slow Cooked Pork Jowl with Spinach & Pacific Oyster (and Oyster emulsion)

My first bite, OMG, ''Its too small'' said by me. The pork jowl was very tender and had the beautiful amount of fat. When almost finished it, I understood why Chef Mark Best gave us this small piece... It was almost too fatty for me. I also like the spinach and oyster.

Wagyu Sirloin with Black Olive, Earl Grey Ash, Burnt Cucumber and Onion

The beef was nice and tender but nothing spectacular... The best beef I had so far in Sydney were at Tetsuya's and Teppanyaki. The black olive puree didn't interest me as well as the earl gray ash. However, the cucumber was another hilight of the dish.

Ping & Ja

Ta & Betty

Sauternes Custard

The silky caramalized custard was simple and perfect. Ta & Ping love it and want more. On the otherhand, I can't take anymore than this, very sweet.

Goats Cheese, White Chocolate, Sorrel & Lemon Sorbet
(sorry about the quality of the lighting)

The lemon sorbet was super delicious and very very sour. My eyes closed every bites I took.... eating with the white chocolate bits which was swet is perfection. I had never thought about white chocolate and lemon before....I love it ! The Goats cheese ball seemed to be the least favourite of our tables but I don't mind it at all.

Petit four : Salted Caramel Chocolates & Bitter Bon Bons

The salted caramel chocolate was nice but the bon bons made us so disappointed... just not our taste at all.

For me, it was another nice meal but not yet satisfied.

Marque Restaurant
4/5 355 Crown Street, Surry Hills NSW
Tel: (02) 9332 2225