Thursday, January 29, 2009

Lovely weekend spent with friends.....

Our friends Kelvin & Lyn arrived Friday night from Melbourne. We enjoyed a night of catching up and a good steak dinner.

On Saturday of the long weekend, we took a drive to the Coonawarra wine region (50kms from us). We visited the Rymill cellar door and did some tasting. K17, B15 and her friend T15 were let loose with my camera. They took some good shots.
B15 about to jump......No!!!

This stunning photo was taken by K18 of grapevines at Rymill.
This statue of rearing horses is the logo of Rymill Coonawarra wines.
This was my dessert at Upstairs at Hollick restaurant, caramelised peaches and honey marscapone cream.
Lyn & Kelvin enjoying themselves.
B15 - the long drive drenched in dappled sunlight. At this time of year the vines are lovely and green and lush.
We returned home and 'Weber' pizzas were on the menu for dinner. 'A' has a pizza stone so we tried it out, baking the pizzas in his Weber kettle BBQ. I made the dough in my bread maker and we were pleased with the result. Very tasty pizza with a thin crunchy crust.
This is another pizza cooking away on the pizza stone in the Weber.
Oh dear! Lyn decided she needed a 'goldfish bowl' to drink her red wine out of. No more said!
On Sunday, we went 4 wheel driving through the sand dunes to our favourite spot, Number Two Rocks. It takes about 1 hour to get there. We arrived and were disappointed to find someone parked in our favourite spot. The cheek of them, really! Anyway, we set up our possy and got the barby all organised for lunch. Then the people in our spot packed up and left! We decided to stay where we were as it wasn't too windy.
I tested out my camera, trying to catch shots of the waves crashing on the reef. I took about 200 pics of the surf! The ocean was really pretty.
Our little barby with lamb chops, hamburgers and fresh trout fillets (in foil)
Salads to compliment to barbecue.
The Risoni salad (top left) is really easy - boil Risoni pasta until al dente, drain. Finely chop red capsicum, red onion, cucumber, celery, add to risoni. Add a small can of corn kernels. Pour in about 1/2 cup french dressing or balsalmic dressing, season with salt and cracked pepper. Chill then serve.
Aussie BBQ plate - lamb chop, hamburger and salad.
We spent the afternoon watching the waves roll in, there were other families playing beach cricket and kids fishing in the shallows (they caught lots of tiddlers!)
We played Petanque (not very well, I might add). Rather unorthodox action, "A".
Petanque boules.
We flew the Aussie flag in honour of this great land...
Kelvin and Lyn lapped up the sun and sand. Don't they look relaxed?
More blue sea and rolling waves.

We stayed until early evening then made our way home by 8pm.
A small meal of Chinese takeaway was on the menu when we got home.
Kelvin and Lyn left for Melbourne on Monday morning. We spent the rest of the day recovering from a busy weekend.
Lovely to catch up with our dear friends - we all had a great time.

Cheers - Joolz

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Mulberry Jam soon...

I picked some more mulberries on Monday. I have frozen them at the moment and will keep adding to them until I have enough to make some jam. There is heaps of fruit on the tree but I have to wait for some more of the fruit to ripen. Can't wait for buttermilk scones, mulberry jam and cream!

Hot, hot, hot....

It reached 39C here yesterday. Today the forecast is for 42C. Pretty much the same for the rest of the week. I am thinking cool thoughts! Mmmm, icecubes!
Homemade icy lemonade!
I wish I could have a go on one of these!
...but all I have got to keep me cool in my office is one of these!!!
- Joolz

Friday, January 23, 2009

We are Australian......

We Are Australian

We are one
But we are many
And from all the land on earth we come
We share a dream and sing with one voice
I am
You are
We are Australian

I came from the dream time
From the dusty red soil plains
I am the ancient heart
The keeper of the flame
I stood upon the rocky shore
I watched the tall ships come
For forty thousand years I'd been
The first Australian

I came upon the prison ship
Bowed down with iron chains
I cleared the land, endured the lash
And waited for the rains
I'm a settler, I'm a farmer's wife
In a dry and barren run
A convict then a free man
I became Australian

I'm the daughter of a digger
Who sought the mother lode
The girl became a woman
On a long and dusty road
I'm a child of the depression
I saw the good times come
I'm a bushy
I'm a battler
I am Australian

I'm a teller of stories
I'm a singer of songs
I am Albert Namatjira
And I paint the ghostly gums
I'm Clancy on his horse
I'm Ned Kelly on the run
I'm the one who waltzed Matilda
I am Australian

I'm the hot wind from the desert
I'm the black soil from the plains
I'm the mountains and the valleys
I'm the drought and flooding rains
I am the rock, I am the sky
The rivers when they run
The spirit of the great land
I am Australian

We are one
But we are many
And from all the land on earth we come
We share a dram and sing with one voice
I am
You are
We are Australian

(Lyrics by Bruce Woodley & Dobe Newton 1987)

Wishing all Australians a Happy Australia Day for
Monday, January 26, 2009

Eat lamb chops (have a barby), pass us the Aerogard (these flies!!!!), drink beer (crack a tinny - Coopers Pale, XXXX, VB etc), drink tea (have a cuppa) with your mates, watch the tennis from a comfy armchair, have some friends around (G'Day mate!), see some of this beautiful country and fly the flag!

Cheers - Joolz

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Sparkling clean...

Spotless, sparkling clean windows. I did half last night when I got home from work and
the rest will be done tonight. Hardly looks like there is glass in the windows, does it?

Someone commented on our green lawns. We don't have rigid water restrictions where we live and because we live just on the outskirts of town, we have our own bore so we are self sufficient for water. Our lawns are watered at sundown, in the cool of the evening for about 20 minutes each night. We have a ride-on mower that mulches all the grass clipping straight back onto the lawn which helps retain the water in the soil - so a minimum sprinkle keeps them nice and green.

More cleaning tonight in readiness for our guests coming this weekend.

Cheers - Joolz

Monday, January 19, 2009

Buttermilk Scones...

Buttermilk Scones
2 cups SR Flour
pinch of salt
1 tblspn sugar
30gms butter, chopped
1 cup buttermilk
1. Preheat oven to 220C. Grease oven tray or use parchment paper.
2. Sift flour into large bowl. Add salt and sugar the add butter and rub in lightly until it looks like bread crumbs.
3. Pour in buttermilk and mix in using a butter knife, mix to a soft and sticky dough.
4. Overmixing at this point will result in tough scones.
5. Turn onto a lightly floured surface. Knead lightly for 30 seconds. Press the dough out to form a round about 2cm (1 inch) thick. Cut into rounds using a scone cutter or floured wine glass. Brush tops with buttermilk.
Depending on your oven, bake for about 6-8 minutes then turn the tray around then bake a further 2 minutes until golden.
I turn mine out into a large colander lined with a clean tea towel. I wrap the scones up and this makes them softer rather than crisp on the outside (that's how my Mum taught me who was taught by my Dad's Mum when she was first married.) - Joolz
I have made this recipe several times now and it is fail proof and fool proof. Big fluffy scones everytime.
This recipe is from Rhonda Jean at
Enjoy - Joolz

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Early morning gardening and a tidy home...

Bonnie cat was up early to help me do some gardening. Cat on a pole!
Feeling very pleased with myself. Got it all weeded and roses dead-headed by 9am.

This is sweet Tilly. I bought her from our local weekly market.

You can see she had 3 little kitties in her pockets.

This is our family/dining room. Neat and tidy for a change.
I love when I can tidy and no-one messes it up. Everyone was still asleep this morning when I took this pic.

Have a good week. We are having visitors from Melbourne for the Australia Day long weekend. Hope to do some four-wheel driving along the coast, maybe visit the Coonawarra for lunch at Hollicks and just chill out here a bit. Hope the weather is good.
Cheers - Joolz

Cupcakes, Scones and Mulberry Pie...

Cupcakes made by K18 - so pretty.
I made Buttermilk scones - get 'em while they're hot, they're lovely!

I am so excited - I have found a Mulberry tree (thanks Yas) that I can pilfer mulberries from. I haven't had mulberries since I was a kid. I went to the tree yesterday and half filled an icecream container with gooey fruit. I had the juice dripping down my arms. I stewed the fruit up with a bit of sugar then made this pie.
Ooh, the sauce is so rich and tangy - I could have licked the plate clean!!
Then 'A' made dinner - Garlic & Basil Chicken.
He split the chickens down the backbone and marinated them in
garlic, basil, butter and lemon juice.
The end result after being roasted in the Weber.
'A' also made a potato salad with egg mayonnaise, basil, garlic and sour cream & bacon.

- Joolz

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Friday, the end of another week...

Chicken Caesar Salad -Ingredients: 2 small Cos lettuces, dressing, grated parmesan cheese, box of prepared croutons, 2 rashers bacon, chicken tenderloins/breast & flour tortillas.
Wash then chop 2 small cos lettuces up, fry off the bacon, drain/cool on paper towel. Add a little oil and brown chicken in pan, adding drizzle of honey and squeeze or lemon or lime juice just as it is finished.
In a large salad bowl, combine lettuce, bacon, croutons, dressing and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. I left the chicken out but this could be tossed through also.
We heated the tortillas, heaped on the lettuce mix, chicken and parmesan and tucked in.
Yummy Friday night dinner!
Have a lovely weekend - Joolz
(We have nothing planned so I will just be pottering around - maybe read a book, scrap book my photo album, make buttermilk scones and some biscuits, dead head roses and maybe attempt that linen closet!)

Friday, January 16, 2009

A yummy Mexican dish...

The pictures are mine.
I'll explain the photos first then post the recipe below - the original recipe says Monteray Jack cheese but I use cheddar cheese and I also added kidney beans because I just love them. It is not a spicy dish but you could add chillies if you wanted.
Above is the pan with browned mince and onion, red capsicum, red kidney beans and mild salsa.
This is how the dish looks once cooked and ready to serve.
I served it with lettuce and tomato on the side with plain corn chips and sour cream.

4 medium potatoes, with peel
2 tblspn butter
2.5 tblspn taco seasoning mix
500gms minced beef
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 cup mild salsa
1 can red kidney beans
1/2 cup chopped capsicum (red/green)
1 cup grated cheddar cheese

Melt butter and add taco seasoning mix. Cut potatoes into bite-sized pieces and place in a large bowl. Pour melted butter mix over spuds and toss to coat.
Put potatoes into a lasagne dish/baking dish and bake uncovered for about 40 minutes in a moderate oven.
then stir...then bake another 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, brown mince and cook onion until soft, drain any excess fat.
Stir in salsa, capsicum and kidney beans and simmer for
5 minutes.
Pour mince mix over potatoes and stir through gently to combine. Sprinkle with grated cheese, bake uncovered for further 10 minutes to melt cheese.

Serve with corn chips & sour cream -
Nice warmed up for leftovers if there is any!

I hope you enjoy it - Joolz