Tuesday, 19 August 2014

[GIVEAWAY] CoYo prize pack and a special announcement!


Sydney's weather has been atrocious. (Yeah I started a post talking about the weather, +1 for social skills right here!) The rain gods must have been very upset... with me, because it would pour as soon as I stepped outside or started driving and stop/return to a small drizzle as soon as I was warm and cosy indoors. I have and will always be a summer girl, I can't wait for all this icky weather to be over! It has been torturous seeing Instagram of the beach and amazing weather!

Bad weather aside, I wanted to finally announce some tweaks to my blog! It's been a while since some change and It was starting to look a bit patchy, but Thanks to Angel Poon, she came to the rescue and completely revamped it for me. What do you think of the new look? I'm lovin' it! (Not endorsed by maccas btw!)  And have you noticed Milkteaxx is now on a new domain? yep! Thanks sydney.com!

Back to tropical weather, as we are still a fair bit away from toasty warm weather and being able to enjoy the beach , I wanted to take you on a virtual tropical holiday, to a place called CoYo.


CoYo is a range of coconut milk based diary alternatives for the vegan and lactose sensitive, not only are they delicious, they are also gluten, soy and added sugars free, making this a guilt-free treat! Mmmm! Their yoghurt and ice creams come in a range of sizes and flavours and are made from creamy coconut milk and plant fed probiotic cultures.

I tried out the passionfruit CoYo yoghurt and it was thick and creamy, just how a delicious yoghurt should be!

So can I tempt you with some CoYo? Yes?

To celebrate the new blog, the lovely peeps at CoYo,have a CoYo sample pack up for grabs today!


The awesome prize pack includes:

1x 400g CoYo yoghurt
2x 250g CoYo yoghurt
2x100g tub CoYo yoghurt

It is a short giveaway open to Sydney readers only (Sorry rest of Aussie-land and international peeps!)., so hurry up and enter. You can enter once daily. The competition will end Saturday 23rd August 2014, Midday, so be quick! The prize will have to be picked up in person as the products are perishable. 


Want to know more about CoYo? find out here

Don't forget to leave me comment on which CoYo products tickle your fancy! 

Till next time, 

Milkteaxx

Thursday, 14 August 2014

PAZAR Food Collective, Canterbury.


What do you get when you combine a police officer and a passion for good food? 

Pazar

Formerly La Lupita, followed by a brief stint at The Basement, Circuar Quay, Atilla Yilmaz is back at the original warehouse-esque location along the busy Canterbury road serving mouthwatering Mediterranean. 

You may have stumbled along the lifeless rows of shops along Canterbury Rd before and have completely missed this little gem. I wouldn't be surprised though, the only indication of its existence is a simple sign bearing the words PAZAR and social media icons. But don't be fooled by its simple signage, step inside and it you are instantly transported to a lively Bazaar, Atilla's concept of combining good food and selling exotic produces. 



What catches my eyes is the massive black and white image of the Day of the Virgin of Guadalupe Festival on one side of the diner.


 A quick scan of the venue and I choose to sit at the bar, here you can catch all the action in the kitchen and do a lot of food watching and oh, the fabulous looking wood fired oven churning out fresh pide and flatbreads.




As there were only 2 of us, I had to be sensible when ordering (who am I kidding?!?). 
We persued the brief yum cha-esque menu and the specials board and decide to share a few items. 


We are told that the menu is no longer just Mexican, like it's previous life, instead, you now get a delicious mix of Turkish with a healthy dose of Middle Eastern and Mexican thrown in. Atilla tells us that his Father was a big inspiration for his cooking, teaching him how to cook up some Turkish classics which he till this day, still makes quite often. 

The food arrives promptly and we begin with a garicky smoked eggplant and tahini dip (Hello vampire breath!). The dips come with some fresh Turkish bread which we saw exiting the oven just a few mere minutes ago. (Oh how I love warm fluffy bread!)


Next up was the smoked wood oven roasted lamb. We simply couldn't resist it as we saw plates of it going out to all the other diners! The lamb was so tender and flavoursome, the pickles gave it a great tangy contrast. Atilla later tells us that the lamb is first smoked and roasted over water to retain moisture, the juices from the cooking is then lathered over the lamb itself and the durum bread. No wonder it was so scrumptious!



As always, I over-order and we were stuffed to the brim. That however didn't stop me from ordering a pide (because one can never have enough bread). 

I quickly persued the menu again and the words sucuk and haloumi caught my immediately, I guess it was made to be that I ordered the sucuk haloumi pide. 




To say this was delicious would be an understatement. I've had my fair share of pide back in my uni days, but these freshly made pide was nothing like those premade, reheated ones. Asides being piping hot (I burnt my tongue on the first bite), PAZAR uses quality gourmet ingredients. The squeaky salty cheese and sucuk had me swooning, we even fought over the last piece! 

Atilla saw my dining buddy toting a massive camera and asked if we would like a tour of the kitchen, seriously, how could I say no? Atilla showed us around the place and his currently small section of goods for sale and told us on weekends he would have group events out the back. 




It was a cold night and Atilla treated us to some Turkish tea which was delicious with an aromatic sweet touch. He even bought out the swinging tea tray to show us some tricks! 



As always, good times fly by and with our bellies stuffed, we rolled ourselves out, vowing that we will be back for their ever-changing menu. (Psst.. they do special Turkish breakfasts on Saturday mornings!)


If you would like to pay them a visit, make sure you check their opening times, they are opened for dinner Wednesday to Friday and all day Saturday. 

PAZAR Food Collective on Urbanspoon


Thoughts? Leave me a comment! 

Stay warm and keep eating, 
Milkteaxx

This meal was independently paid for.
All photos in this post are by Michael Zhang of Maikeru Nirvana Photography unless otherwise stated. 


Friday, 8 August 2014

Guest Post: Taste the Mediterranean- Baker's Delight & De Bortoli Wines

Hello Lovely humans!

I've been waiting for the weekend all week! Hope everyone has an amazing weekend ahead!

Let's get straight to business! So, I have  treat for you guys today, (a Milkteaxx first!)

Drum roll......

We have guest blogger in the house! Please welcome Lilian of Weekend Notes, the Queen of nerdy humour and epic metabolism.

Lilian is the go to if you need a laugh, spend some time with her and you'll be in stitches, literally (Psst... She is a doctor in training!)

Let's pass it on to Lilian shall we?

I shall be back in a few days!

sit back and enjoy!
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Monday, 4 August 2014

Matcha azuki bean magic custard cake- A 2 in 1 dessert.

Magic. 

you would generally associate with pulling bunnies out of hats, coins behind your ears and sawing people in half (I quite like watching the latter).Whilst magic shows are fantastic, I sometimes wish the magic would apply to other areas, like dirty dishes disappearing and assignments completing themselves.

As we all know, that won't be happening (anytime soon) so I'm going to introduce you an equally good (if not better) alternative. Matcha Custard Cake- featuring, you guessed it, azuki beans. 


Magic & cake? If you didn't think cake was already magical, I present you with the Magic Custard Cake. 
This recipe was first spotted on White on rice couple's blog and is adapted from Raspberry Cupcakes recipe

How magical is this cake? think rainbows and unicorns. Yes, that magical. Otherwise, how would a humble cake batter transform into 2 luscious layers of cake and custard? (hrrm... It could be the unicorns or Harry Potter..)

Is this magical cake hard to make? not at all!

Ingredients

1 cup plain flour
3 tablespoons quality matcha powder- for intense matcha flavour
110g butter, melted
2 cups milk
4 eggs, separated
pinch of cream of tartar
a squeeze of lemon juice
1 1/2 cup of sweetened azuki beans
1 tablespoon water

for decorating:

dabs of sweetened azuki bean paste
1:1 ratio matcha powder and icing sugar, sieved. 

Method

1. preheat oven to 150°C and grease and line a rectangular baking tray.

2.combine flour and matcha powder and mix well (I'm lazy and don't sift stuff)


3. in separate bowls, melt butter and heat milk to lukewarm, set aside. 

4. In your mixer bowl, whip egg whites with a pinch of cream of tartar and a squeeze of lemon juice until stiff peak, set aside.


5. in a separate bowl, whisk egg yolks and sugar until pale yellow and thick, add in butter and water and mix until all incorporated.


6. add in the flour mix and mix until homogeneous.


7. add in egg whites in 3 batches and gently mix until incorporated (this step tests your patience as the mix seems to be forever lumpy)

8. pour the cake batter into prepared tin and bake at 240°for 45 minutes or until top is golden. (careful not to over-bake because you want the custard layer to still be wobbly)

9.remove cake in baking paper from tin and allow it to cool completely before cutting. Before serving, dust liberally with icing sugar and matcha powder mix.


This cake is delicious on it's own, but it is out of the world with ice cream. 
(Confession: I snuck downstairs after a late night studying session and had mine with homemade matcha ice cream.)

So if you are an avid matcha azuki bean lover like me, this is the go to dessert. I put some of the cake mix into a mini cast iron pot for individual serve, perfect for giving away! 

Happy baking!

Milkteaxx 


Like to know more about Milkteaxx and her food adventures? 
Check out Milkteaxx on Instagram / Facebook Twitter!



































Wednesday, 30 July 2014

SoCal, Neutral Bay- California here I come!


I need a holiday.

I've been wanting a US trip for a while now but am lacking time and money.
But alas,  no time and budget calls for another alternative.

A relatively close alternative is to visit an Californian inspired restaurant with some tasty good eats. why?

1. I needed to eat (drink) my heart's sorrow away
2. Pretend I was on holidays

That is how I found myself at SoCal Neutral bay.

The brains behind SoCal are Hamish Watts and Ben Carroll from Applejack Hospitality, SoCal came about when they returned from an eating, drinking and surfing trip in California, it oozes the southern California surf vibe and theme. 


Cali inspired decor 


the "outdoor" seating

The delicious food and drinks menu here is extensive and is a reflection of what can be found along HWY101. Head Chef Zac Smart sure lives up to his name, delivering an electic mix of share foods menu. Make sure you bring a few more friends! 


Saturday, 26 July 2014

Winter begone! Azuki Bean & milk popsicles

When cold, eat ice cream.

yep, you read it right.

I have to admit that eat more ice cream and frozen treats during winter than during good old summer time.
weird cos I complain about frozen extremities every 3 seconds but eating ice cold treats in winter is like celebrating the impending summer.

(Have I mentioned how much I LOVE summer yet?)

 And I won't be complaining of being frozen when eating ice cold goodies in winter. At least not when when azuki bean & milk popsicles are involved.


These popsicles are something I grew up eating, they were delicious but unfortunately they weren't homemade and had a bunch of additives, colour and a crazy amount of sugar, so I decided  I would give this a go. Think about it, if I can bake a cake, making popsicles should be easy as!

This recipe is easy as a breeze and flavours are completely adaptable to your taste preference.

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Barilla and my journey with pasta + Good food and Wine show 2014 highlights.


If you have read my previous posts, you know how much I loathe making fresh pasta (have had countless pasta disasters, lets not go there) so when it comes to cooking pasta, dried pasta is my go to simply because it is fuss free, convenient and it can sit in my pantry, ready to go whenever I need it. 

Barilla Pasta has always been the go to brand in my household, it was the brand I picked up when I first cooked pasta 10 odd years ago, till today, you can always find at least one Barilla Pasta product in my pantry.

Barilla Pasta is one of the most well known pasta brands, So there is no surprises there when it is the best pasta you can find in Italy, the home of everything Pasta. (I haven't been to Italy yet, but am definitely making plans for the near future, this will have to do for now!)

Barilla not only has an extensive range of dried pastas but also sauces too.  (Psst their pesto is addictive and all things delicious) 
They are forever expanding (as is my waistline) and now even have a cooking school in Annandale!
You can find their extensive product range, some mouth-watering recipes and read more about their latest adventures on their webpage

I think the people at Barilla knows that I love my carbs and were running low on pasta, because they kindly sent me a lovely hamper of goodies, including my favourite pesto, yum! 



Barilla hamper

So today I share with you guys, 2 of my go-to meat-free dinners, that can be easily made with a few simple ingredients. I work crazy odd hours so when I get home late and want something warm and comforting, I whip up one of these for a quick dinner and keep leftovers for lunch the next day. Both these recipes are quick and easy to whip up and are easily inter-changeable for your favourite pasta swirls and shapes.