5 Ways To Pimp Your Hot Cross Bun

Despite the fact they landed on shelves around Australia three months in advance, hot cross buns are (almost) everyone’s guilty pleasure. But sometimes the old faithful ‘toasted with a smear of butter’ can get a little boring. So i’ve come up with a few alternative ways to enjoy your festive, fruity bun.

#1 Ice-cream Sandwich

If you’re a smart shopper that tends to avoid the ‘naughty’ isles where temptation looms then you probably aren’t aware that Coles now sell their own brand of ‘frozen custard ice cream’, the perfect addition to a hot cross bun ice cream sandwich. Simply halve the hot cross bun, toast under the hot grill, add a few scoops of the custard ice cream and top with the remaining half. If you’re feeling super fancy, melt a few squares of chocolate and drizzle over the top.

#2 Creme Egg Surprise

If Cadbury’s Creme Egg’s are your favourite chocolate at Easter, then you’ll love this combo. Fire up your sandwich press and slice your hot cross bun in half with a coating of butter around the outside. Place the bottom half of the bun on the sandwich press, a creme egg in the centre and the remaining half on top. Close the sandwich press and watch the sugary egg ooze all over the bun.

#3 French Toast Twist

If your’e searching for the perfect Easter Monday breakfast idea, this is it. Whisk together 2 eggs, 2 tablespoons of milk and some orange zest and soak the hot cross bun halves in the mixture. Heat a non-stick frying pan, add a knob of butter and fry each half for about 1-2 minutes each side. Remove from heat, plate them up and top them off with some creme fraiche and a drizzle of maple syrup.

#4 A Savoury Delight

Sometimes (not often) we simply can’t do sweet. So i’ve come up with an alternative way to enjoy your Easter treat that won’t give you a sugar rush. Simply cut open your fruity bun, add a few slices of unsmoked streaky bacon and some mature cheddar cheese then toast. Lunch at your work desk never smelt so good.

#5 Bread & Butter Pudding

This one requires a recipe and a bit of time, but it’s totally worth it – especially if your pantry is full of discounted hot cross buns you managed to snag the day before Good Friday. Using chocolate hot cross buns, celebrity chef Nadia Lim has created one crazy good bread and butter pudding that you won’t be able to stop eating. Check out the recipe here.

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The Best First Date Bars In Perth

So you’ve swiped right, matched and exchanged some banter. Now it’s time to meet your true love  face-to-face. But we all know first dates are never easy. There’s always that fear you’ll insult them, bore them, or talk too much to fill that ‘award silence’. But thankfully you can make your first date less nerve-racking by dabbling in a few drinks at one of Perth’s best first date bars. The key is to pick a bar that matches the vibe the two of you have been sharing. And if that doesn’t seem to work, there’s always the ‘fake phone call’ get-away.

The Standard

The Standard is a tiny but mighty bar that you’ll end up leaving hours after you’ve met your date (provided all goes well). But on the rarity the two of you can’t stand each other, the bartenders here know how to make some seriously strong cocktails to help you survive the evening.

28 Roe St, Northbridge WA 6003

Bob’s Bar

Rooftop bars are always a good idea for a first date. Bob’s Bar provides a large open space with plenty of fresh air and strong alcohol, making it a laid-back way to find out everything there is to know about the mystery guy/gal. And if your date turns out to be a total flop, you can always have a chat to the friendly bartenders about how you wish you could have ‘accidentally’ shoved your tinder match over the edge.

125 St Georges Terrace, Perth WA 6000

For more Rooftop Bars in Perth, check out the Perth Rooftop Bar Guide

Henry Summer

This relatively new bar in Northbridge is always packed, so if your date is a no show, there will plenty of other possible candidates around. With five bars and no shortage of space for drinking and dining, you can easily spend a solid few hours here finding out each others deepest darkest secrets. If the two of you get hungry, they’ve got a few grazing boards on offer, and if you feel like trying something new, they’ve even got wine on tap – makes for a good conversation starter. 

69 Aberdeen St, Northbridge WA 6003

No Mafia

The best thing about No Mafia is that it’s located right next to Franco Forte, so whether the date is going impressively well or horribly wrong, you can grab a bowl of pasta to collect your post-date thoughts. Being an Italian bar, you can expect some notable wines and antipasto.

189 William St, Northbridge WA 6003

The Cabin

Whether it’s a hot summers night or a cold winter evening, The Cabin is a great spot to meet a complete stranger for the first time. The interior boasts a real cosy cabin feel with its low lit lighting, decent sized fire place and couches aplenty. And if it’s getting too heated inside, the balcony provides just the right amount of fresh air to sit down and enjoy a few drinks with your soon-to-be partner.

174 Scarborough Beach Rd, Mount Hawthorn WA 6016

Clarences

If you’re after a subtle romantic vibe, then Clarences is the spot to check out. With soft candle light and cosy booths, the atmosphere couldn’t be more warm and welcoming if it tried. Partake in a wine or two and peruse the menu, there’s a different meal special every day, so you can charm your date on a budget.

566 Beaufort St, Mount Lawley WA 6050

Coast

With a view of the beach and an impressive line up of food, you’re practically guaranteed a second date after an evening spent at Coast. Soak up the chilled-out casual vibes whilst sipping on a few Port Beach Mojito’s with your date. And if you run out of stuff to talk about, you can always marvel at the sun setting over the beach.

42 Port Beach Rd, North Fremantle WA 6159

Little Creatures

When is Little Creatures not an appropriate place to kick back and enjoy a house-made beer or cider. The vibe is so chill, you can easily spend a few hours getting to know one another. And if all goes well after one drink and you suddenly develop an appetite, the pizza’s here are ideal sharing size.

42 Mews Rd, Fremantle WA 6160

What You’ll Be Eating (And Drinking) In 2018

It looks like kale, kimchi and coconut water are so 2017. Popular American Grocer, Whole Foods recently tapped into its global buyers and experts to determine the food trends for 2018, and it’s recommended you hoard your taco shells!!

1. Floral Flowers

It seems that piping hot lattes with a side of pretty flowers are all the go for 2018. We’ll be seeing an increase of edible flowers such as lavender, rose and hibiscus being included in lattes, granolas, marshmallows and of course Instagram posts! The American grocer has named elderflower as their MVP (Most Valuable Petal).

2. Powders

If you’ve been brunching around Perth this year, the phrase ‘matcha latte’ is nothing unfamiliar to your ears. Next year we can expect to see powders like matcha, maca root, cacao and ground turmeric included in everything from baked goods to soups and even nutrition bars. The taste is certainly an acquired one, but your body will reap the benefits.

3. Mushrooms

You either love or hate this little Fun-guy, either way this vegetable is not going anywhere in 2018. In fact, it’s changing up its function. It’s rumored that we will be seeing varieties such as ‘reishi’ and ‘chaga’ (commonly used as ‘wellness ingredients’) appear in beverages like coffee and tea as well as body products like soaps and body washes. Holy Shitake!!

4. Middle Eastern Cuisine

For the love of Hummus!! Next year we can expect to see the Middle Eastern fare hit the mainstream market in a big way. But sadly this isn’t to do with hummus or falafels. While the core products will still be very much available, we’re expected to see an increase in spices such as harissa, cardamom and za’atar. It’s safe to say this will definitely spice things up in 2018.

5. Transparency

It looks like the food market in 2018 will be a heck of a lot clearer with consumers gaining additional information about their food. It has been reported that from next year, manufactures will be filling their food labels with more information. Some of the changes we’re expected to see on labels are whether or not a product is GMO-free, responsibly grown and part of fair trade.

6. Plant-based Products

It looks like vegans and vegetarians won’t be the only consumers of plant-based foods next year. Better food technology is working on making plant-based foods more appealing to meat and dairy eaters, so you and your vegan friend will be able to enjoy your ‘plant-based burger’ and nut ‘milk’ together. If that isn’t bonding, I don’t know what is!

7. Pop And Puff

Thankfully, this has no link to rice bubbles, so snap, crackle and pop are still very much safe. In 2018 there will be a new way of processing and combining ingredients. Puffed, popped and drying of ingredients will see some extremely bizarre combinations of food come together and surprise your taste buds. Think along the lines of Quinoa Chocolate Chips and Pea Crisps, healthy AND tasty!

8. Shell-less Tacos

Before you go stocking up on Taco shells, please read on. There is certainly no global shortage of Taco’s, in fact it seems that the world is loving taco’s so much they’ve created an alternate version. It has been reported that Tacos eaten at all times of the day are going to be the norm. Chefs will be pushing boundaries on what can be used as a wrapper AND filling for the Mexican treat. Dessert taco anyone??

9. Less Food Waste Is More

We’re all guilty of wasting good food, especially manufactures. But 2018 simply has no room for food waste. Next year, manufacturers will aim to use every part of a plant or animal, to help eliminate the waste, including the stems and the rinds. Pickled watermelon rinds are just one example of what we can expect to see next year.

10. Carbonation

With the no-sugar trend hitting the market globally, consumers are shying away from soft drinks and are instead turning to low-sugar alternatives. 2018 will see sparkling drinks like water or cold brew coffee increase their popularity significantly.

Linen Pieces You Need This Summer

With the warm weather starting to kick in, your wardrobe is in desperate need for a spring/summer update. This season everyone’s loving linen, and it’s not hard to see why. Taking out the crease factor, the light, breezy fabric practically screams summer. So I’ve picked out five of my favourite linen pieces you can easily pair with almost anything.


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The Linen Jumpsuit

Trust me when I say, this linen jumpsuit will be your go-to this summer. It’s perfect for those cool summer nights, and completely effortless. Pair it with some slides during the day or dress it up with some wedges for an evening look. And the winning factor, you can eat as much as you like because nobody can sense a food baby under that outfit!


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The Linen Crop

This little white linen crop is worth all your savings. Pair it with a denim skirt and some hoops and you’ll feel like a whole lotta woman! Amp it up even more with a loud pair of printed shorts. It’s a wardrobe staple that you’ll wish you got your hands on sooner!

 


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The Linen Skirt

Aside from the fact that red is a HOT colour this season, this wrap skirt is a must-buy. Designer and director of the brand Rue Stiic takes her inspiration from her travels between Bali, Southern California and coastal Australian cities. For a casual look, pair the Desi Mini Skirt with a plain white tee. But if you’re feeling a little over-confident, rock a bit of red on red with a lip to match.


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The Linen Slip Dress

One can never have too many slip dresses. And this nude linen slip dress ticks all the boxes. With an affordable price, a simple style and a subtle colour, it’s a core piece this summer. Throw on a pair of sneakers and a t-shirt underneath to get you through the day, or chuck a denim jacket over for those cooler summer nights. Consider your ‘first date’ outfit sorted.

48 Hours At COMO The Treasury

We’re officially into the second half of 2017, and I think it goes without saying that we’re all in need of a little getaway. But with most of Perth having used up their annual leave to experience that European sun, some of us can only afford a two-day weekend escape. Thankfully, I’ve come up with the ultimate not-so-getaway that will have you returning to work on Monday feeling refreshed and relaxed. All you need to do is cancel your weekend plans and pack your overnight bag.

Nestled in the heart of Perth’s CBD is COMO The Treasury. This urban hotel was awarded Gourmet Traveller’s Hotel of the Year in 2016, and you can certainly see why. Taking over what was formerly a post office and treasury, the hotel is housed in the 19th century state buildings. It contains over 40 rooms and suites all boasting a serene retreat away from the hype of the city, giving off that ‘home away from home’ vibe.


DAY 1

9AM

Leave your car in the hands of the hotel Valet and head over to the 24-hour concierge to grab the keys to your very own suite and begin your mini holiday. Once you’ve unpacked that overnight bag and tested out the custom-made king beds draped in Egyptian cotton bed linen, head downstairs to Post for brunch.

10:30AM

Treat yourself to some lemon scented pancakes with banana, berries and cashew maple cream, or opt for something light and healthy like the egg white and kale omelette with mushrooms and roasted tomato.

12PM

It’s time to unwind and be selfish. Check yourself into the COMO Shambhala Urban Escape for some ‘me time’. Specialising in hands-on-healing and holistic treatments, they offer a variety of different massages as well as facials and hydrotherapy. Once you’ve finished being pampered, take a dip in the 20m heated indoor pool to cool off.

2:30 PM

Replenish your energy levels and fuel up on caffeine downstairs at Telegram Coffee. The head barista here has spent 20 years perfecting his brew, so you can expect a nice smooth latte. If you’re feeling peckish, they’ve also got a few treats on offer like Honest Goods coconut bread – 100% guilt free.

4PM

Head back to your room, roll up those Roman blinds and take in the view of Perth city through the oversized windows before running yourself a nice long bath in a German deep-form Kaldewei free standing tub.

6PM

It’s been a long day, you deserve a drink (or two). Head up to the fourth floor and order yourself a signature cocktail from Wildflower. The Wildflower Martini with West Perth Vodka, Gerladton wax and Victorian vermouth goes down nicely while admiring the view of both the city and the Swan River.

8PM

After you’ve quaffed down a few cocktails, it’s time you fill that hunger in your stomach. The menu at Wildflower boasts dishes that revolve around the indigenous six seasons, and is driven by farmer and forager style. For entrée you can expect dishes like salt baked heirloom beetroot with whipped goats curd and native thyme, and for main there’s options aplenty, from line caught wild fish to wood grilled Arkady lamb. Finish off your feed here with something sweet like the Whipped Bahen and Co Chocolate with wattle seed cream and Geraldton wax sorbet.

10PM

Head back up to your room and get comfortable in that king bed, taking full advantage of the Samsung LED television with endless movie options.


DAY 2

10AM

After that sleep in you’ll need something satisfying for breakfast. Get dressed and head down to Petition Kitchen for their signature baked slow eggs with beans, ham hock and kransky sausage. If that’s too much for 10am, their oatmeal porridge with mandarin and rhubarb is light and warm and perfect for those cold wintery mornings.

12PM

Now you’re out and about check out some of the little boutique shops within the building. Lust over some of the amazing luxury jewellery at Rohan Jewellery where they specialise in working collaboratively on bespoke pieces for their clients. Once you’ve picked out some of your favourite pieces, stroll over to Ginger B where you’ll find gifts aplenty (in case you needed even more reason to spoil yourself). From gourmet hampers, to facial and body products and even gifts for friends with newborns. Everything here is locally sourced, organic and eco friendly, so you can feel good about your purchase. The next stop is Sue Lewis Chocolatier aka coco heaven. Here you’ll find some of the world’s finest coverture chocolate all handmade with care and passion. The salted caramel block is a must try. With 70% Valrhona dark chocolate encasing a soft buttery caramel flavour throughout and pink Murray River salt flakes sprinkled on top, it’s hard not to finish the whole block.

3PM

It’s time to take a wander around the historic building and check out some of the art. The white sculpture standing before St George’s Cathedral is an abstract interpretation of St George and the dragon and was created by artists Marcus Canning and Christian de Vietri in 2011. The name it takes has an interesting history that you can read more about when you head over there. Another interesting piece of art is Dirty Deeds. It illustrates exactly where the two holding cells for the Police Court used to stand, and shows the kind of people who spent time there.

5PM

After experiencing some old history and culture, it’s time to fill your belly. Head over to Long Chim for an early dinner and be prepared to eat your body weight in Thai food. Long Chim means to come and taste, and that’s exactly what you’ll end up doing here. Indulge in dishes like a coconut and turmeric curry of chicken, deep fried squid with garlic and peppercorns and fried rice with roast duck. Wash it all down with a Thai inspired cocktail like the Pomelo Spritz, made up of pomelo, grapefruit sherbet, Aperol, vodka and bubbles, then finish off the night with a palm sugar pudding topped with grated coconut.

8PM

If you’re feeling up to it, head over to the Treasury Lounge and Bar for a nightcap. Located on the ground floor, it spans three interconnected rooms with high ceilings, timber shuttered windows, and a drinks menu that’s available until late. Order yourself an old fashioned Cosmo before heading up to your room to pack your bags and run yourself one last bubble bath.


DAY 3

9AM

It’s time to check out, but before you go make sure you book yourself in for another stay, because chances are you’ll be needing another inner-city getaway in a few months!

For more info and details on COMO the treasury check out their website.