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recipes | reviews

Friday

4

October 2013

0

COMMENTS

Recipe: Banana And Nutella Wontons

Written by , Posted in Recipes

Banana and Nutella Wontons

In Anna and the French Kiss, one of Anna’s favourite French meals are crepes with Nutella and banana. I love the Nutella and banana combination, but crepes? I’m not exactly a fan. Is that weird? I think it probably is, based on the fact I’ve never met anyone else who dislikes crepes, but I just couldn’t bring myself to whip up a batch.

Instead, I made banana and Nutella wontons. The flavour combinations are still there, but instead of a soggy, slightly slimy crepe there’s crisp pastry. These are delicious on their own, but would also be great on top of ice-cream or as an accompaniment to tea and coffee.

You can also play around with the filling – chocolate and berries, or even more savoury combinations, like cheese and apple, would also taste amazing!

Banana and Nutella WontonsBanana and Nutella Wontons

Ingredients

Makes 12.

  • 12 wonton wrappers
  • 20g butter, melted
  • 100g Nutella
  • 1 banana, sliced into rounds 0.5cm thick
  • 50mL warm water
  • Cinnamon and icing sugar, for dusting

Method

  1. Preheat a fan-forced oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
  2. Assemble the wonton parcels by placing one teaspoon of nutella and one slice of banana in the lower half of a wonton wrapper.
  3. Using the tip of your finger, wet the border of the wonton wrapper. This will help the edges to stick together.
  4. Fold the upper half of the wonton over the lower half and press down on the edges to seal.
  5. Brush the parcel lightly with butter.
  6. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden and crispy.
  7. Dust with cinnamon and icing sugar and serve hot.

Adapted from here.

Tuesday

17

September 2013

4

COMMENTS

Top Ten Tuesday: My Autumn (or Spring) Reading List

Written by , Posted in Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke And The Bookish. This week, it’s the books on our autumn TBR list. Of course, living in Australia I’m saying goodbye to gloomy winter and getting out my summer dresses from storage, so for me it’s the top books on my spring reading list.

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Mad About the Boy by Helen Fielding

The new Bridget Jones book is released in a month and I can’t wait! But will it be able to live up to expectations? I hope so …

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Goldfinch by Donna Tartt

When an author only releases a new book every decade or so, a new novel is a pretty exciting event. Goldfinch revolves around the life of a young boy who becomes obsessed with a captivating painting that reminds him of his late mother and all early reviews are pointing to it being amazing. I’m counting down the days until I can get my hands on a copy.

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Monday

16

September 2013

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COMMENTS

Recipe: Toasted Brioche Sandwich with Chocolate, Brie & Raspberries

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Toasted Brioche Sandwich with Chocolate, Brie & Raspberries

It’s just a coincidence that I reviewed two French-themed books one after another, but who could ever get tired of French food? Not me, that’s for sure. I’m a sucker for anything creamy, chocolately, and laden with more fat than you should ever eat in one sitting. Luckily, this toasted sandwich made with brioche, brie, chocolate and raspberries ticks all those boxes.

Petite Mort is a book with a major twist, so why not play around with typically French ingredients and turn them into something a bit unexpected? This sandwich is weird, I know, BUT IT TASTES AMAZING. Don’t be put off my poor photography skills; this may be difficult to photograph, but that’s the only difficult thing about it. Cheese and fruit is a match made in heaven, and brioche and chocolate is a pretty classic combination. So why not mash them all up in one delicious sandwich? It’s sweet, but the slight tartness of the raspberries and the creaminess of the brie stops it from being tooth-achingly sugary.

Toasted Brioche Sandwich with Chocolate, Brie & Raspberry
Raspberries

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Monday

9

September 2013

0

COMMENTS

Book Review – Anna and the French Kiss

Written by , Posted in Reviews

6936382Title: Anna and the French Kiss

Author: Stephanie Perkins

Pages: 372

Genre: Young Adult, Romance

Published by: Speak

Goodreads summary: Here

Rating:

 

Anna and the French Kiss explores Anna’s year in Paris after transferring from her Atlanta high school to a boarding school in Paris. There, in the city of love, she meets the handsome and charismatic Etienne St Clair. Sadly for her, he’s already taken. But, then again, maybe so is she …

 

Perhaps it was because the hype around this book had given me unrealistically high hopes, but Anna and the French Kiss left me distinctly disappointed.

On paper, the novel ticked all the boxes: Paris, check. Charming love interest, check. Nicely paced plot, check. Unfortunately, the frequently cheesy dialogue and Anna herself let the book down for me. Often selfish and prone to mawkish bouts of self-pity, I found it hard to connect with her and immerse myself in her romance.

One thing I did really enjoy about the novel was the slow development of the relationship between St Clair and Anna. Although Anna had a crush at first sight, they begin a very believable and realistic friendship before launching into anything deeper. I really appreciated this element of the story; so many relationships in real life start off this way and it also allowed us to see a lot of St Clair’s personality over a prolonged period of time.

Speaking of St Clair, he was great. I definitely do understand the fuss surrounding his character, and it’s well deserved. He’s not the stereotypically tall, dark and handsome love interest often seen in romance novels, but instead he’s a friendly, approachable lead who makes up in charm what he lacks in height.

Anna is my main problem here. She’s the type of character that is in a constant state of “woe is me”, and for no real reason. Much of the drama is either of her own creation or exacerbated by her lack of concern for others. She’s also, in my opinion, pretty superficial at times and lacks the depth to be a truly compelling protagonist. A self-confessed film buff and supposed connoisseur of the cinema, Anna has never heard of any French films nor its history or reputation. Seriously? She then spends the rest of her time in Paris watching American films because that’s what you do in a city known for its culture. To each their own, I guess.

She’s also a really terrible friend. I can forgive the cinematic ignorance and the moping about boarding school (after all, I went to a mixed day/boarding school so I know how acutely some people get homesick) but her actions towards her friends are selfish in the extreme. A final chapter acknowledgement of her behaviour is just too little, too late for me.

Is this one example where you actually need to be a teen to fully appreciate teen fiction? After all, I’m getting old. Maybe this is what passes for a grand romance amongst the kids these days.

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Or, rather, is this a case of word of mouth ruining what is otherwise a good book? Maybe it’s a bit of both, but I probably would have enjoyed Anna and the French Kiss much more had I stumbled across it blindly. Instead, based on other reviews, I was expecting something really special and I suppose it was inevitable that I was going to be disillusioned.

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Saturday

7

September 2013

0

COMMENTS

Weekend Reads

Written by , Posted in Uncategorized

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Sorry for the lacklustre updating this week! I’ve been completely overwhelmed by uni assignments – I’m one of those people who leave everything to the last minute. I’ve told myself that it’s not going to happen next time but … I already know it will. Anyway, here’s what I’ll be reading this weekend now that I have some free time again:

The folks over at Incredible Things have found these beautiful illustrations depicting untranslatable words from different languages. So gorgeous!

Sick of reading about ‘sexy’ vampires, dragons or wizards? The Guardian has created a list of the top ten unusual fantasy novels. Are they missing any of your favourites?

To celebrate the publication of Margaret Atwood’s new novel, MaddAddam, Flavorwire have shared 7 things you didn’t know about her.

After just having read Petite Mort, this article about 1950s movie gimmicks definitely struck a cord with me.

These peach pie popsicles are getting me very excited for summer!

I’ve always wanted a treehouse and this feature by Honestly WTF takes my love to a whole new level.

Enjoy your weekend, and if you’re Australian, don’t forget to vote today!
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