Wedded bliss down under…

For the past 3 weeks, I’ve had the complete privilege and absolute joy of being a part of my sister’s wedding in Sydney. Sunshine, thunderstorms, tears of joy, tears of stress, frocks and sweatpants, pizza and Michelin stars, hen parties and belated Christmas dinners…this time away has had it all and, astonishingly I know, there’s been a fair amount of food related bliss tumbled in with everything else…

From personally branded ostrich burgers on the bbq (possibly one of the greatest gifts someone can get her brother-in-law apparently) to cheese and wine in the glorious Hunter Valley, the culinary delights of this trip have run the gamut from messy and fun to fine dining with the best silverware and everything in between.

Two of the biggest events though from an eating point of view (which, let’s face it,Β is how most of my days are planned and carried out) were undoubtedly the hen party and the wedding dinner. One I can claim partial credit for creating. One I can claim partial credit for devouring.

My beloved bridey, T, had a twp day hen do that was truly awesome – starting with in-house beauty treatments and an afternoon tea spread followed by drinks and dancing from the clubs to the beach finished off with the ferry into Sydney, a picnic in the botanical gardens and bubbles in the Opera House Bar and it was at the afternoon tea stage, that I entered, apron in hand and plans drawn up from 10’000 miles away.

The oven was baking. The stove was cooking. The food processor was chopping. The blender was whizzing. The fridge was creaking under the weight of its contents. The Maid of Honour (or MoH as had become my title) was in full-steam-ahead, Monica Geller get-out-of-my-kitchen-but-come-help-me-at-the-same-time mode. It ended, as is the way of all good things, with a spread of dainty, elegant, colourful food and a glass of bubbly…

…double layered white chocolate, caramel and macadamia nut slices…

http://www.food.ninemsn.com.au/recipes/other/8349829/macadamia-caramel-slice

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…Lorraine Pascal’s skinny tarts filled with vanilla yoghurt and fruit…

http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/the_skinny_tart_74715

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…apricot and almond rugelach made with cream cheese pastry…

http://lindaraxa.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/almond-and-apricot-rugelach.html

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…mini banoffee pies…

Our favourite: Mini Banoffee Pies

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…cinnamon sugar, filo pastry twists…

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And then, a mere 3 days later, on February 13th 2013, my baby sister got hitched. She got herself a ball and chain. She said I do. She wore the dress of her dreams. Everyone cheered and cried and oohed and ahed. In short, ’twas perfect.

At a reception high on the cliffs and overlooking the ocean, everyone dined by dusk light, fairy light and then warm summers evening star light. A tasting style menu from Jonahs delivered one perfect dish after another and although there were some things I’d never tried before, although there were some things I’d never heard of before, every plate was cleared and every ingredient was loved.

…cured ocean trout with a salad of beetroot, fennel, orange and yoghurt espuma was clean and refreshing; ocean on a plate…

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…pumpkin and feta tart with a sage and beurre noisette dressing was earthy and sweet and so delicious I had to restrain myself from going around afterwards licking the other plates clean like some small child the morning after her parents’ dinner party…

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…deeply satisfying marinated chicken breast accompanied by garlic soubise, pancetta, wild mushrooms and lentils…

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…melt in the mouth seared beef fillet with creamy dauphinoise potato, green beans and a nicoise dressing…

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…passionfruit tart with toasted meringue that was in equal parts zingy and gooey…

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Here, I’m afraid I’ll have to ask you to imagine if you will, a large elephant with a truss round its tummy, staggering from the table to a chair, probably with a petit four and another glass of wine in its hand as this is what I currently resembled.

To be honest though, although the food, location and delivery was sublime, this was such a perfect time full of love and laughterΒ that it wouldn’t have mattered if we’d had haute cuisine, fish and chips or a peanut butter sandwich. Well, the last one might have mattered to the nut allergy bearing groom…

2 thoughts on “Wedded bliss down under…

  1. Oh Alex – this is absolutely perfect πŸ™‚ those three weeks were the very best three weeks ever in the history of time, and the food at both hen do and wedding was just… Well, still perfection! I could really go for a cinnamon twist or four for brekky this morning… Thank you for such a beautiful blog πŸ™‚ xxxxxx

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