Thursday, April 23, 2015

Thriving on Thursdays - Linky Party # 129


Welcome to another week and Thriving on Thursdays. A place to find heaps of fantastic recipes, crafts, tips and advice, all to help us thrive from day to day. I was so glad to send my children back to school from just over 2 weeks vacation on Monday but as much as I love the peace and serenity, the mad school rush gets to me. Here we are, Thursday already, and I haven't got anything done like I've wanted to. The week has just flown by with appointments and ducking out here and there. Hopefully next week will be more productive. 

This Saturday, the 25th April, is one of the most revered and honoured holidays in Australia. This year we commemorate the 100th anniversary of the landing of the ANZAC soldiers on the shores of Gallipoli in World War I. We give thanks to the service men and women who have served in every conflict since. A time to remember. Lest we forget. Here are my top 3 food and non food posts from last week's party.


Gingerbread Doughnuts | Strength and Sunshine @RebeccaGF666 #doughnuts #baked #breakfast #dessert #glutenfree #vegan #grainfree #paleo #soyfree #gingerbread

pink coat, white shirt, geometric print trousers, black snakeskin slip-ons, look of the day

Thanks again everyone for linking up each week. I really do appreciate it and enjoy seeing every single one of your posts. If you were featured, please feel free to grab a 'featured' button. Now, onto this week's party. Let's see what you've been up to.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Aussie Works Burger

I consider myself very lucky to have grown up in a time when there wasn't a 'Golden Arches' on every street corner and my dear Mother used to cook everything from scratch and takeaway was a very rare treat. One such treat was a good old fashioned hamburger with the lot, or, as us Aussies like to call it, an "Aussie Works Burger". But I prefer to cook them at home, just the way I like them.

It still happens to be one of my favourite takeaway options if I'm ever out and about and short on time or won't be home. It beats any burger chain hamburger hands down and that's why I don't eat them. They don't even come close to tasting like a real hamburger. There are a lot of variations of the good old Aussie Works Burger. Some fancy cafes like to jazz it up a bit with things like 'Wagyu beef', for instance, or 'caramelised onion jam' which is all just too fancy schmancy (and very overpriced) and not at all necessary.  With some basic pantry supplies that we all have, you can easily recreate your own burger at home.

It starts with your basic hamburger bun. I usually have a supply in the freezer for a quick weekend meal. You can choose white, wholemeal or wholegrain bread rolls or even sliced bread for that matter. The buns are split and lightly toasted under the griller (broiler).

Next step is the meat. I usually use ground beef and add nothing but salt and pepper. If the meat is a little too crumbly, you can add a beaten egg to bind. I just form the meat into patties and fry on a pan until cooked. You can substitute the beef for any ground meat or use a thin piece of steak.

Bacon and sliced onions are then cooked in the same pan while the beef patties are kept warm in the oven. 

Next, fry an egg, in the same pan to your liking. (I usually omit this for myself as I'm not a big fan of eggs.)

While the pattie, bacon, onions and egg are cooking, return one half of the bun to the griller with a couple slices of cheddar cheese and melt. You are pretty much now ready to assemble the burger.

Some people might have different ways of assembling it but I always prefer to have the salad on the bottom. Start with lettuce, sliced tomato (add a sprinkling of salt and pepper to the tomato), sliced beetroot (sliced, canned beetroot is HUGE in Australia - we couldn't imagine a burger without it), a slice of fresh or canned pineapple then add the hot items.

Add the meat patty, egg, bacon and cooked onions and lather with your choice of sauce.  In my case, it's always barbecue (or similarly known as HP Sauce) sauce. Tomato sauce, or ketchup, is the other most common sauce added to our burgers.

Top with the other half of the bun which has the melted cheese and you're done. Now, the biggest problem you have is how you're going to get your mouth around it. Good luck! You'll need a bath after eating it as the sauce will ooze out but it will be worth it. A typical Aussie favourite that is best recreated at home.

Aussie Works Burger
  • hamburger bun (one per person)
  • ground meat (beef, chicken, pork, veal, lamb)
  • bacon rashers
  • onion, thinly sliced
  • eggs
  • cheddar cheese, sliced
  • lettuce
  • tomato
  • beetroot, sliced
  • pineapple, fresh or canned, sliced
  • sauce of your choice, barbecue or tomato
  • oil for frying
  • salt and pepper

  1. Toast buns until lightly golden.
  2. Lightly season your ground meat with salt and pepper and form into patties. Fry until cooked through.
  3. Fry bacon rashers, thinly sliced onions and eggs.
  4. Return one half of the hamburger bun to the griller and add sliced cheese and melt.
  5. Assemble the burger with lettuce, tomato, beetroot, pineapple, meat pattie, bacon, egg, sliced onions and sauce.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Thriving on Thursdays - Linky Party # 128


It's Thursday and time for another week of Thriving on Thursdays. A great place for you all to link up your favourite blog posts for the week. I'm on the homeward stretch of these school holidays and I think after 6 years of schooling, I'm starting to see a pattern forming with my children. It takes at least a week for them to unwind from their daily routine (me too) and by the time the second week comes around, they're raring to go, more at ease, relaxed and can make their own fun. I guess as they get older, the curriculum gets harder for them and it is a lot to take in. As for me, I'm feeling a lot like Lili Von Schtupp (aka Madeline Kahn) when she did this scene in Blazing Saddles.

I do thrive on routine and can't wait to get back into next Monday, catching up on all my unfinished and new projects and getting back to a more regular blogging schedule. In the meantime, here's my top 3 food and non food posts from last week's party. 


Sweet Potato Latkes Pancakes low carb

Menu Planning on $30 a week


DIY No-Slip Hangers on Diane's Vintage Zest!  #free #organization #tip

This is for the Birds!


All of the posts were so fantastic last week. It was really hard to choose just 3 for each category. Keep up the great work girls. Can't wait to see what you've all been working on this week.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Grow your own plants for your wedding

With more than 12 months still to go until I get married in May 2016, the wedding planning merry-go-round is well and truly at full speed and not about to stop. It's like I can't get off. I'm trying though. We've booked the photographer and the caterer and about to meet the marriage celebrant this coming week and once that's done, I'm going to try my hardest not to look at anything wedding related, that is, until I had this idea.

I'd been looking at bouquets, florists, real flowers, fake flowers, silk flowers etc etc etc and it just becomes mind boggling. I've always loved lavender, in every form, and want to go with something simple. I figured, when the time was right, I could enquire at a wholesale flower market as to how much it cost and then I thought, why don't I just grow my own? I can buy some already established potted plants from the nursery and nurture them until the wedding. I can use some of the pots directly on the table and use another bigger pot as my cut flowers. As we're already in autumn and coming into winter, I may have missed the boat but because I live in a warm climate I might be lucky.

Blue salvias are another favourite of mine and are so hardy in my sub tropical climate and so easy to grow. There are many different varieties, annuals or perennials, so finding the right one for the right time of the year to harvest them for your wedding will be crucial.

The Easiest Indoor Plants That Won't Die On You -Areca Palm grows to 7ft or can be stunted by keeping in smaller pot, likes indierct sunlight and dryish soil watering only on alternate weeks .
And as you would imagine, I'll be styling the wedding myself, cutting corners and expenses at every possible opportunity and I have many potted palms and other plants which I'll use for decorating the reception area (which is being held at home).

Beautiful White Rose Bouquet! Photography by, Floral Design by
Of course, if you'd like to have full on roses in your bouquet you might have to rethink growing them yourself or if you're trying to cut costs, maybe think of an alternative. I've been reading that some of the silk varieties in a lot of different species of flowers are very realistic. Don't think I'll go down that path but a lot of people have and they look beautiful. 

My Daughter's Vintage Wedding: Decorations and Floral Design | BlogHer love vintage and simple!!
Gypsophila (or Baby's Breath as it's also known) is also very easy to grow. I love the simplicity of the plain white small flowers in the above bouquet and might use them for my attendants.

Whatever flowers you have in mind for your bridal bouquet and other flowers for attendants, think about growing them yourself to save money. Just think how much more sentimental it will be on the day. I'll be sharing how to make your own bouquet as the time gets closer because I've already looked in to that as well. (Promise, no more looking at wedding stuff for at least a couple months. Well, I'll try. It's so hard not to.)

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Thriving on Thursdays - Linky Party # 127


Welcome to another week of Thriving on Thursdays. Hope you all had a wonderful Easter break. Ours was a nice break and a great way to ease on into 2 weeks school holiday vacation for my 2 children. I did have prepared a whole bunch of school holiday boredom buster ideas to share but they failed miserably. Seems my kids are getting older and not into those 'fun' planned activities anymore. I put together a small basket of activity books, games, colouring pencils and all sorts of bits and pieces and they had gone through the whole lot in two days. I printed off this fantastic Nature Scavenger Hunt and it lasted all of 10 minutes. They are having more fun being couch potatoes watching TV, wrestling with each other, riding their scooters, jumping on the trampoline and going on the occasional outing with me. What happened to my babies? 

I did create these "Holiday Rules" and so far so good. We've used up a couple of the vouchers but those vouchers that mention chores for an extra hour on their electronic devices aren't getting used up in a hurry. I wonder why? Oh well. One more week to go and then I'll be complaining about the school routine again. Never a happy medium. Now, onto my top 3 food and non food posts from last week's party.


Chicken Lettuce Wraps recipe (soy free)




Fat Quarter Shop Charm Box Blog Hop @ Quilting Mod


Thanks so much to each and everyone of you for linking up each week. I get so much inspiration from you all. Feel free to grab a featured button if you like. Now, onto this week's party. Can't wait to see what you've all been working on. Have a great week!

Monday, April 6, 2015

Cinnamon Swirl Banana Cake

Anyone tire of Banana Cake? I must admit, I do. It might be one of those 'go to' recipes for a lot of people because, like all of us, we've all got a heap of black bananas in the freezer. I buy them, with all good intent that my children will eat them but as soon as a black spot appears, that's it. They won't. "Back in my day....." we wouldn't have had a choice. It was that or nothing and I think they actually taste sweeter when they're a bit ripe. Anyway, my children drive me nuts sometimes but that's another story. 

To tell you the truth, I can't remember where I got this recipe from. I thought I'd try something different apart from my usual No Fuss Fudge Cake recipe which I use for just about any cake. Without any disrespect to the writer of the recipe, I did find this one a little dry but it still got eaten. 

It's just basically your normal banana cake with a mixture of cinnamon and brown sugar sprinkled on top of half the batter and then the remaining batter poured on top and baked. You can leave it like that or run your knife through it to get a 'swirl' effect, like I did. I bake most of my cakes for the kids in a square pan. It's easy to slice into even pieces and what I do is slice it and wrap in cling film and pop in the freezer, ready to grab for the lunch boxes.

This cake was received well and is just a little different to your normal, plain banana which, don't get me wrong, can be very nice but I get a little over it. (Another thing I do to change up a banana cake is to add 1/2 a cup of peanut butter or any other nut butter you have. Nutella is also nice.) I've got to keep on top of my game when it comes to my kids or things just get wasted. Just use your favourite banana cake recipe and see how many different combinations you come up with. Maybe you've got a favourite way to adjust the good old banana cake. I'd love to know.

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