Monday, October 24, 2011

Armchair Collective (Monavale)

My bestfriend friend took me to a local cafe in her area called "Armchair Collective" for brunch a few months ago - i absolutely loved it! Inside the cafe there are lots of things on display for purchase like kitchen accessories, homewares, flowers, everything interior. They also had an assortment of cakes, breads & muffins to choose from take away or eat-in (with a coffee would be perfect!)

It was about 11am on a saturday morning and the shop was bustling with families, couples, a few people looked like they had just finished a jog or came from the gym, a very positive vibe in the air everyone was chirpy with smiles on their faces, a really great atmosphere for catching up.

I really loved all the flowers that were around, its such a smart way to brighten up the cafe/shop, and to have them available for purchase too, we had this white lily(?) on our table which was sooo pretty.

It took about 15 minutes before we got a table, after a lot of eye hawking people to finish their meals, standing close by looking at things so we didn't look suspicious of stealing their table as soon as they stood up to leave (haha, it felt a bit wierd doing this but it was the only way to get a table!)

soy mocha

A really lovely mocha which i wish was served in a bigger cup! hehe.

pot of chai tea $4.50

This was served in a very stylish set up: on a wooden board with a funny tea pot (that yielded 3-4 cups of tea) with two mini dishes of honey and cinnamon. I didn't try any but Ann is a huge lover of chai and she gave this a thumbs up.

spicy scrambled eggs on soy linseed toast w spinach avocado + roasted tomatoes $16

My eggs were scrambled nicely but i saw no hint of spice at all! The spinach was bland (some kind of dressing would be nice) and my avocado half had the little hard head of pip still attached on it (i find this annoying, do you?). Also, my toast was plain i would've liked some butter but at that point i was just too hungry and just dug in.

the collective baked breakfast of eggs, spinach, beans + sausages $18

Ann's meal was quite substantial and at this price i think its reasonable, she couldn't finish the beans or the sausages though, a very big serving indeed.

I'd love to go back one day and try the "brioche french toast w berries, mascarpone + maple syrup $16" as that sounds delicious! And i'd like to have a look at the pots and teapots again, i just love exploring homeware shops i can't wait to have my own home i'll decorate it so nicely!

On a completely different topic (still food though) here are a few different bento boxes i found online- they are sooo adorable!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Healthy toasted coconut muesli

Has it been almost a month? I apologise for disappearing, life has just been a bit crazy, although i won't go into detail.. i will try harder to post more often :)

Inspired by Maria's sugar-free coconut granola, i went out to buy some coconut flakes and made my own version.

What i love about Maria's food blog is not only her photo's (which are always gorgeous) but all her recipes are healthy and good for you, i know she is a bit of a health nut so i have courage in trying her recipes and sharing with my friends who are also health conscious.

What i found about this recipe was that with my oven, it required about 4 times of turning before it got to the colour that i wanted, so you could even turn it once every 15 minutes and you would be safe, it won't burn!

I made 2 batches, one for my lovely couple friend Ann & Chris, (Chris i know likes granola/toasted muesli) and Stella, my girlfriend who cannot eat gluten and so i omitted the quickoats, and so i hope they all like this!

Healthy toasted coconut muesli

1 cup quick oats
125grams coconut flakes
50grams almonds (unroasted)
30grams chia seeds
30grams pepitas
30grams sunflower seeds
35grams coconut oil
1 teaspoon cinnamon

(serve with any type of milk that you like)

1. pre-heat oven to 140 C (lower to 120 C if you have a fan forced oven)

2. mix everything together and spread onto a baking tray lined with paper

3. bake and watch it at either 10 or 15 mins and turn batch over with a spatula, and put back into the oven, keep doing this until you get the colour that you want.

* * *

I was a bit bored, so i calculated the kilojoule count and ended up with:

including quick oats 1870kj/100gram serving
without quickoats 1570kj/100gram serving

So even though it is quite high, and a bit higher when you add milk, you will know that your mix has no preservatives, extra sugars, or anything nasty as you have made it all yourself :)