Happy New Years

Hi everyone, hope you had a great new years! I’ve been visiting with family in Melbourne. It’s not so much of a vacation, with so many people to see, but it still feels good to be away from home. So far we have been out and about a lot more this trip. We have had family dinners and BBQ’s, and have had a few meals out.

On my first night I was having  dinner with the family and I met the temptation of the beef ravioli. It was from a local pasta factory that my uncle had bought. Instead of eating this I used the Napoletana sauce, that my aunty made for the pasta, and added sauteed mushrooms and wholemeal penne pasta .  I didn’t really want what they had. I tried one just to make sure, but I am not really craving the taste of that anymore. I have got to the point that I can take it or leave it. Its only been since last september that I stopped eating meat daily and I am finally not wanting it at all.


I have been eating a lot of hummus, ajvar and bread. I also have been a bit of eating egg mayo, eggs and seafood. When I am home its easy to avoid, but when others are cooking I find it harder to hold back, especially if the alternative would only be eating green salad. I don’t feel too heavy, but my metabolism is not as fast as it was. I don’t think I would continue to eat these things regularly. As for dairy and meat, I have been able to avoid them, which is most important to me at the moment.  My family haven’t been a problem with my diet. They always ask me if I will be able to eat what they made. Some still think anything vegan is ‘gross’, but I am not going to try to defend my diet choices. Everyone finds their own way and unfortunately some have to find out the hard way.

On Saturday one of my uncles took use to a Italian Deli, Lakes Fresh Food Market at Taylor’s Lakes. This place had everything it was amazing. They had heaps of the fresh fruit and vege and many italian products that I remember in Milan. They even some Eastern European stuff too. We bought ajvar, braised pickled eggplant and lots of bread. I can’t believe how much cheaper this places was for this stuff too. Wish we had a deli like this in Brisbane.






On Sunday I was at another aunt’s house for a BBQ. My family prepared lots of meats. My uncle bought steak and sausages from the Italian deli. Luckily, my aunt prepared lots of salads. I had pita bread, hummus, BBQ mushrooms and onions, rice salad, potato salad and bean salad. Below is one of the recipe of the most delicious salad that I have ever had. I  couldn’t stop eating it. It’s vegan and very flavor some. The only thing I may do differently is roast or toast the cashews myself. I don’t know the exact recipe, but this is what my mum can remember, as they made it before I arrived.


Aunty Rina’s Rice Salad (vegam. gluten free)


cooked parboil rice

red & green capsicum, chopped

shallots, chopped

roasted cashews


coriander, diced

Ingredients for Dressing:

3/4 cup rice bran oil

2 tablespooon soy sauce

2 teaspoon sugar

8 garlic cloves, diced

2 teaspoon crushed ginger


1. Cook the rice and let it cool.

2. Chop the capsicum, shallots, coriander and prepare the dressing.

3. Combine the rice, dressing and capsicum, coriander, raisins and half of the cashews. Add the rest of the cashews on top and serve.


Yesterday for New Years Eve I got to go to Mr Nice Guy Bake Shop at Ascot Vale. We just happened to be around the corner, so we dropped in and had some afternoon tea. It was actually Ally from Made of Stars that told me about this place. The cupcakes on the website look amazing and I am really sick of watching everyone eat cakes and pavlova. This place was really cute little cafe. They staff were really friendly despite my uncle making constant jokes about vegans. To my family the idea of a vegan bake shop is strange, hippy or just gross. But I didn’t care this place was awesome and really worth the visit. In the end I think he liked it too.

I ordered the Red velvet and Beetle Juice cupcakes for me and Marco. My mum and uncle shared the Strawberry Champagne cupcake and a Cinnamon Bun. We all had coffees as well. I had a cappuccino with Hazelnut Milk. It was quite nice. I have never had it before. One litre to buy is $7 or more at health food shops, compared to $2 for organic soy/rice/etc.  Marco ordered a Peppermint Mocha, I think it had soy. That was really nice too. They also have another store at Prahran Markets. So if your in either areas I really recommend this place.






Beetle Juice, Strawberry Champagne, Red Velvet, Cinnamon Bun



Cappuccino with hazelnut milk & Peppermint Mocha

For dinner I went to Victoria Street in Richmond to have Vietnamese with another Uncle. This street is packed with Asian restaurants and Asian grocery stores and is a favorite place to eat for my family. We went to Thanh Hà 2. I had a lot to choose from here. Vegetable Colesaw, Vegetables with Garlic Sauce, Vermicelli Noodles with Vegetables  I ended having Fried Bean curd with Mushrooms and Steamed Rice. It was really nice. I don’t usually like thick sauces in stir fries but this was spot on. After dinner we went to watch the fireworks for New Years at my uncles apartment in Fitzroy. He has a penthouse apartment and the view was spectacular  Anyway hope everyone had a good time last night and will post again soon.





21 thoughts on “Happy New Years

  1. Happy new year! Your Aunty’s salad looks great.
    Yay! I’m so glad you got to visit Mr Nice Guy’s. Those cupcakes look amazing.
    Looks like you are having a great time.

  2. Your photos are tempting me. I really need to start looking out for tickets to Melbourne. 🙂 Thank you for sharing and glad to know you are having a great time. happy new year to you and your loved ones. looking forward to your many recipes in 2013!

  3. Happy New Year! Looks like you’ve had a great time! I love Melbourne (and Mr Nice Guy cupcakes too! They’re fabulous!). Here’s to a wonderful 2013! The best to you and yours! xx

  4. Pingback: Short trip to Melbourne | Live Blissful

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