A busy weekend in Brisbane and Yatala Pies

I’ve just got home (Canberra) after a busy weekend in Brisbane to see my daughters. May is a big month for us, my father’s birthday is in May, my eldest two daughters both share a birthday in May (two years apart), it’s mothers day in May and my birthday is in May.

I arrived late Friday night and the girls were already in ‘bed’ ready to sleep. They had a big Saturday ahead of them.

On Saturday we got out of bed at 5 am and ate a quick breakfast. I had peanut paste on toast (I didn’t have time for a low carbohydrate meal) while the two youngest ones had Mum’s lemon curd on toast. We had to be on the road by 6.30 am and on our way to Yatala for the QGSSSA Cross Country championships. Athletics is not the favourite sport for Miss13 and Miss17 however, as all rounders they compete in as many sports as possible. The meet is held at Rivermount College which isn’t part of the QGSSSA. The college is at Yatala near the Gold Coast.

Just thinking back a bit, when I arrived Friday night I discovered that a tube of moisturiser (yes I have Ichthyosis) had ‘exploded’ in my bag and the shirt I was going to wear had been ruined. Mum said I should wear one of Dad’s shirts. She also said it would be warm so short sleeves wouldn’t be a problem. I always listen to my mother.

So we arrive at Yatala and it’s cloudy and cold. I’m shivering. Thanks Mum 🙂

[To get more detail out of the images, click on them, they should open in a new window with a higher resolution. I’m happy to receive comments on the photography. Some images were captured with a Canon PowerShot G16 and the others with a Nikon D7100. I shoot in manual and capture RAW files to allow some post processing in Adobe Lightroom. ]

Rivermount College GPS coordinates

Rivermount College GPS coordinates

Rivermount College GPS coordinates

Rivermount College GPS coordinates

The girls run well and enjoy themselves. The next stop is the Sleeman Sports Complex in Chandler. We have to get Miss17 there for gymnastics training. Even though she didn’t make the Queensland team this year she’s allowed to compete at the national championships this week in Melbourne. She has to train at Gymnastics Queensland headquarters in Chandler. Before we get there though, Miss17 suggests a spot of morning tea at Yatala Pies.

Yatala Pies is a bit of an institution in South East Queensland. Their pies are known far and wide. Funnily enough I’ve never eaten in the Yatala Pies shop. This was a first.

The Famous Yatala Pies shop at Yatala near Queensland’s Gold Coast http://yatalapies.m2media.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/feature1.jpg

Yatala Pies on Urbanspoon


Miss17 had a curry chicken and vegetable pie, Miss13 had a sausage roll and I elected to have a pasty. It’s been ages since I’ve had a good pasty. This one didn’t disappoint. I loved it.


Yatala pies pasty

Yatala pies pasty

Yatala pies takeaway box.

Yatala pies takeaway box. You can see Miss13’s sausage roll in the background.

Now regulars readers know me so it shouldn’t be any surprise that when I saw Vanilla slice I had to have one. Yatala Pies sells French Vanilla slices with a whopping big layer of French vanilla cream. It was gorgeous.

Yatala Pies French vanilla slice

Yatala Pies French vanilla slice

After a lot of driving back and forth between Chandler and Chermside it was a long tiring day. After getting the kids back to my parents’ place it was time to cook our special May dinner to celebrate so many birthdays and mothers day.

I said to Mum that I wanted to cook salmon and would be wonderful is Miss17 could make a salad. I also made a pumpkin cauliflower mash which I used to smear the plate and perch the salmon on.



#Dinner is salmon on a smear of pumpkin cauliflower mash with a green salad

#Dinner is salmon on a smear of pumpkin cauliflower mash with a green salad

For dessert, Miss17 had made an ice cream cake. The base was made with Ferrero Rocher, Chocolate Mint and Queensland nut (Macadamia) ice creams. The top had a combination of mixers added to make it a cake to remember.

Miss17 made me a Ferrero rocher, chocolate mint and Queensland nut ice cream cake with heaps of mixers

Miss17 made me a Ferrero rocher, chocolate mint and Queensland nut ice cream cake with heaps of mixers

After dinner we watched The Hunger Games on DVD. I’d never seen it before. It was good.

After a good night’s sleep Miss19 joined us after a busy weekend of working and studying. We had planned a special breakfast together. My daughters and me 🙂 We decided to head to Groove Train at Chermside because it was close and the last time we were there we enjoyed the food.

The Groove Train on Urbanspoon


I asked for poached eggs with bacon, hollandaise sauce, avocado and mushrooms. It was pretty good.

Poached eggs with bacon, hollandaise sauce, avocado and mushroom on sourdough toast

Poached eggs with bacon, hollandaise sauce, avocado and mushroom on sourdough toast

Miss13 asked for pancakes

Pancake stack with berries and maple syrup

Pancake stack with berries and maple syrup

After breakfast I had to take Miss17 back to Chandler for more training. I said my goodbyes and then caught a flight back to Canberra.

Dinner while watching Master Chef Australia was a nude burger with tomato, bacon and Coon cheese.

Nude Wagyu burger with bacon, tomato and Coon cheese

Nude Wagyu burger with bacon, tomato and Coon cheese

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Hope you had a great weekend and ate YUMMY

A big day for Chinese food | Noble Palace | Dumpling Inn

Yesterday was a much better day at work compared to Wednesday. I woke up feeling ill with a sore throat and a headache yet I was euphoric because Queensland had defeated NSW in  the first game of this year’s State of Origin series.

For lunch we went to the Noble Palace in Phillip. Seven of us enjoyed lunch to thank a dear work friend who had acted up for an extended period of time and performed superbly. We enjoyed Hong Kong roast duck, Crispy skin chicken and plum sauce, Sizzling Mongolian lamb, Peking shredded chilli beef, Pork fillet with chili lemon grass, and rice (I could have forgotten a dish). One of our party also had a vegetable and noodle dish which she generously shared. The Noble Palace is a well known Chinese restaurant in the Woden district and consistently produces high quality meals. They also do wonderful yum cha.

Duck, beef and lamb (iPhone)

Last night Bron and I went to the Dumpling Inn for dinner. This Chinese restaurant is a fantastic suburban venue. It’s relatively small but like the Noble Palace consistently produces high quality food including yum cha on weekends. Last night we enjoyed duck pancakes and fried flounder with rice.

Preparing a duck pancake (iPhone)

Finished duck pancake (iPhone)

Left over duck (iPhone)

Deep fried flounder (iPhone)

After dinner we had dessert at Bron’s. This was some leftover vanilla cheesecake with salted caramel sauce and berries.

Vanilla cheesecake with salted caramel sauce and berries (iPhone)

Because I can’t help myself I’ll share an image from a friend at work from today.


Enough said for now 🙂


Dinner—Quick and easy

Today I woke up and just didn’t feel right. I woke with a head ache and felt really tired. I’m not sure why, I had slipped in the shower yesterday and hurt my back so I haven’t been doing anything strenuous.

I had been planning for a little while to make pancakes for breakfast. I’d never made them from scratch and so many friends seems to be able to whip them up and have fabulous pancakes. I used a simple recipe that required a resting stage. I don’t think enough carbon dioxide formed. They were a little flat but not too doughy which was good.

During the day I did a little work, mainly going through some e-mail and sorting out some other matters.

This evening I had a piece of fillet steak that I soaked in whisky, soy and oil. I also had some pak choi, celery, peas, mushrooms, and cauliflower. It was simple enough to quickly cook them in my wok. I love my wok. I don’t regard myself as a Chinese cook even though I’m Chinese, I just seemed to have absorbed some basic lessons from Mum.

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