Join me in my love a blogger challenge. Spend a little bit of time reading some of the thoughtful, inspired and intelligent writing on offer by your favourite blogger. Most bloggers write for the love of words and a desire to create something beautiful, so why not sit down and do some reading?
Today we are meeting Collette from “The Morning Drum.” Collette is blogger, writer, editor, Mum and a general all round clever-creative type. She writes about family life, grief, creativity and the pursuit and exploration of a rich life.
Collette and I met through a blogging course that we had undertaken together and I loved the cut of her jib from the get go. Smart, opinionated and willing to explore life in all its grit and glory, Colette’s writing always gets me thinking.
We both have children too, so when we met I had one of those “Ah-ha” moments that happen when you meet your own kind.
I am thrilled to feature Collette here at Eat My Street. Today she is talking all things food, cooking and adventure.
But first, a few of my favourite posts from The Morning Drum.
Collette from The Morning Drum
DB. Hi Colette. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
CB. I’m married with three kids (9, 8 and 3). I am a freelance writer – I do a mix of corporate writing, copy writing and feature writing. When I write features I write mainly about parenting and wellbeing. I live in Bayside Melbourne, which I love. I love to draw, am learning to paint, and sew. I want to learn to crotchet too (one day). I love food, love eating out, travelling and discovering new places. I am a recent convert (semi-convert) to camping, which I can see will take my family and I many new places. I love yoga, and am trying to become a runner (the C25K is helping me with this!).
- DB. What is your favourite recipe at the moment?
Right now, it is salami pasta. It’s currently my favourite because my husband makes salami from scratch and I use this in the recipe. I’ve come across a new method, which I’m really excited about. Rather than dicing the red capsicum, I whizzed it in the thermomix, with the onions and garlic, so it was like a paste. I then fried this in the pan with the salami and bacon, and added the tomatoes last. It made for a really authentic Italian flavour, with lots of depth. But ask me tomorrow and it could change – I am planning on making ricotta gnocchi from scratch, so if I succeed it may well be my new favourite.
- DB. What are your kitchen staples that you could not go without?
CB. Hmmm, avocado, goats cheese or feta, parmesan, anchovies, olives, garlic, all the vinegars (balsamic, Apple Cider, White Wine and Red Wine) soy sauce, sesame oil, dijon mustard, egg mayo (the real stuff). I could go on and on…
- DB. Do you have a secret vice?
So many! I love food. But chocolate in any form, as well as home baked goods. And champagne – although it’s not much of a secret.
- DB. Tell us about your most memorable meal
CB. When we were in London in 2013, we went to a fancy pants Micheline-starred restaurant in Mayfair called Pollen Street Social. We had the 8 course taster menu, which was a Heston Blumenthal-style menu with dry ice coming from our desserts and ice cream that looked like pop corn. It was the most money we’ve ever spent on a meal, but definitely the most memorable. It will be a long time before I’m back dining in Mayfair!
- DB.What are you currently drinking?
CB. Am always drinking tea, am partial to Pinot Noir with this cold weather too. My default is bubbles though.
- DB. We love a good tip off at Eat My Street. What is your favourite cafe or restaurant?
CB. I recently tried Cerberus Beach House in Black Rock, that was great, with fabulous views of the sea. Another fav is Hendricks Cafe – it opened about a year ago and was quickly named one of the top 10 in Melbourne’s Best New Cafes. Happily, it’s on the corner of my street, so a nice two minute stroll.
- DB. What is you favourite spot in the kitchen?
CB. The breakfast bar is my favourite spot in the kitchen. My kids sit up there every morning. When people come over they gather around this spot – it’s the central point of the kitchen, so you can cook and still be part of the conversation. The piece of granite that it’s made from came from a friend’s brother. He was ripping it out of his kitchen and was going to take it to the tip. Being closet greenies (well, not even closet greenies really) we couldn’t stand the thought of the waste so went and picked it up and stored it until we built a new kitchen. My husband designed the kitchen around the shape of the stone top.
Last but not least, Collette has been kind enough to share her all time favourite recipe with us. You will not be surprised to discover that it features chocolate.
Colette says she loves to make this on a Sunday afternoon, and I think that I might just follow suit. We all need a little extra something on a Monday morning right?
Favourite Recipe with Colette from The Morning Drum
I don’t think I can go past Bill Granger’s brownie for a recipe to share. I love it so much that I know request it as my birthday cake, instead of a traditional cake. I’m lucky that my husband is a beautiful cook, so can whip this up without too much trouble. It’s our default dinner party dessert if we are running out of time, or if your guests are fussy, it’s also our default Sunday-baking treat. It is quite possibly the most amazing brownie you will ever taste! It is the yardstick for all other brownies, but the result of that is that they mostly disappoint – this one will never disappoint!
- 350g (1 ½ cups) caster sugar
- 80g cocoa powder
- 60g plain flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 4 eggs, lightly beaten
- 200g unsalted butter, melted
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 200g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
Preheat the oven to 160ºC. Line a 22cm square baking tin with baking paper. Stir together the sugar, cocoa powder, flour and baking powder in a bowl. Mix in the eggs, butter and vanilla until combined, and then mix in the chocolate.
Pour into the tin and bake for 40-45 minutes. Leave to cool slightly in the tin, then turn out onto a wire rack.
Cut into squares to serve.
PS. I made the brownie. It is dangerous. I can’t stop. Yum.