Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Ideas in Food + Atelier

I don't write about other people's food often.
I have to admit that I am hard to please.

I had a fabulous dinner last night.
You must:

go to atelier.
read ideas in food.
follow foodie prints here and here.

It was more than just a meal, it was a visual exploration. I want to one day do food this beautiful.
I took the time to think, and smell and admire. I ate 15 courses even though it was about 3 hours before my usual 'dinner time'

I had a great 'date', my most fantastic moment was when Don served me pieces of the whole fish to share family style - it is great to reconnect with the person in front of you and stop staring at your plate. It is also fantastic to look up at the person across you and simply smile, no words needed, because you are both blown away by it all.

It was also heartwarming to meet chefs who are still humble. I have been following Alex's blog for awhile and was a fan of atelier before it even opened, I love people who are adventurous, curious. It just gets your imagination flowing and obviously makes you smile.

**ps. will send a massive email with grapefruit bar recipe, had no idea i would get such a response!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Two hands & one heart per human.

Where to start?
It has been more than a month since I have last posted. How long since I have posted a recipe? A good picture? Thank you for being so patient, I know a lot of you have been wondering how I am.

I should start by saying that I am good.
My mum was a tad sick and I took some time to be with her. I thought I was losing my mum and I am so thankful that she is well again. Thank you for saving her heart.

Things happen that make you think differently. Have you ever stopped and looked at a stranger and wondered what their life is? What are they presently living as they are driving that car? Why are they smiling so much, or why do they look so sad? Life just goes on, whatever you are going through. I walked a long hospital hallway and sobbed openly one day. The other, I watched a friend cry and could do nothing more than put a hand on her back, a few soft strokes in her hair and a hug. If only there was a window into other people's lives to understand them better.

Music plays a big part in my life, nowadays and always.
What does this have to do with food? It influences my moods. My thoughts. It inspires. I have a 'song phrase' for many moments in my life. Good and bad. (umm. good and sad)

This was a very Tori month.

Desserts at the shop went from a very reasonable amount per day to 'how can my two hands produce this much?'

Full display in the morning, empty at the end of the day. You can't hope for anything fresher - and I would not want it otherwise... I come in early every day and do it how it should be for any pastry shop.

(insert here Tori singing 'baker baker, baking a cake, make me a day, make me whole again...)

I love doing desserts. I secretly wish this was my job, 8 hours a day.

And how to do all day brunch without thinking of 'here in my head' - Tori sings: breakfast, any hour, it could save the world...

Brunch has been getting busier since xmas. Familiar faces. Oooohhh and aaaahhh. Camera phones. Lineups.
But when breakfast gets too intense, for tooooo long, I hear Tori singing Slayer's 'raining blood'

All this silliness aside, I have to admit that it is hard keeping all the pieces together.
Take-home food has really been taking off. Need to produce more. More.

These delicate king oyster and bok choy dumplings I loved...

Thinking of the take-home food, the day-to-day menu, the desserts, the brunch, soups, salads... Then putting in orders, shopping, cooking, accounting, paperstufffff, taking pictures, returning emails, cooking some more. And most of this as there are people in the shop, talking to me, eating in front of me. Radiohead surrounds me and I keep replaying 'In Limbo' - Nowhere to hide, trapdoors that open, I spiral down.. I lost my way... I lost my way.

But then I have these great moments. I make people smile.
I make myself smile.

These little sweets made their first appearance this week and it was love.

Nutmeg beignets filled with lemon curd and rolled in cinnamon sugar.

Grapefruit bars (email me for the recipe!)

Honey fig and blood orange cheesecakes.

Other things that make me smile? The fact that Lynne and Katie eat potatoes as no one is watching. That means that they really want them. I love you ladies. ( I think Lynne kept those in her apron pocket... )

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