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Apples Ain’t Apples

Apples Ain’t Apples

On a recent food and wine trip, with my husband, to the Southern Highlands* for a few days I had the good fortune to visit a very special apple orchard – actually a farm consisting of three separate apple orchards: the oldest of these dating back to the late 1800s – that today produces a truly yummy, vintage, organic, sparkling cider. It’s called Pomologist Cider.  The current owners purchased the property, not far from Robertson, almost 20 years ago and after a subsequent trip to England, where they sampled some locally made, organic ciders, returned home and set about creating their own Southern Highlands’ version.

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Autumn Plum and Walnut Cake, and a Bowl of Gorgeous Poached Plums

Autumn Plum and Walnut Cake, and a Bowl of Gorgeous Poached Plums

I don’t know about you, but I love plums. A bowl on the kitchen bench glistening in the morning light; the autumn colours reminiscent of precious gems. They are delicious as they are, or so versatile to cook with. Every year, at the end of their season, I make what seems like a bucket of plum jam – it’s become a bit of a ritual for me. I feel like I’m preserving a little jar of sunshine to see us through the winter.

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Chocolate and Children

We’ve just returned from a few days away. A working trip for me, but an event I look forward to every year, open day at the Castagna vineyard in Beechworth Victoria. I spend my time doing what I love doing most… cooking, with a fair amount of wine tasting thrown in for good measure.

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Lavender Ice Cream with Honey Madeleines

Those who know me already realise that I am obsessed with those delicious little pillows of joy called Madeleines. Having tried many recipes over the years I always come back to the same one, Stephanie Alexander’s recipe of honey madeleines in her wonderful book The Cooks Companion.  These need no accompaniment but should you wish to over indulge they do go splendidly with Lavender ice cream, another recipe inspired by Stephanie Alexander.

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