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Archive for May, 2010

Seal Bay Conservation Park on Kangaroo Island

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

The sea lions are at Seal Bay Conservation Park on Kangaroo Island (the island is Australia’s third-largest island and a short 45-minute flight from Adelaide).
The sea lions spend up to three days at sea hunting for food, then they enjoy a rest period lolling around the sand dunes soaking up the sun or surfing the waves. In winter they wander up to the scrub and take refuge under the bushes.

The sea lions are protected by law and you will be advised by a National Parks Ranger whether you can watch them from a boardwalk over the dunes, or whether you can go down on to the beach. They look cute and cuddly – but the males can be very aggressive and it’s best to watch them from a distance.

Tasting Australia

Monday, May 3rd, 2010

Yesterday, still in the Barossa Valley (South Australia), we called in to the Apex Bakery in Elizabeth Street, Tanunda, because we’d heard heaps about the Fechner brothers and their bread made the good old-fashioned way with unbleached flour, no sugars and no emulsifiers. The wood fired oven was built in 1924 and is Australia’s longest continually fired oven. It’s never gone out!

Brian (Nipper) Fechner proudly standing in front of his wood fired oven at the Apex Bakery
Brian (Nipper) Fechner proudly standing in front of his wood fired oven at the Apex Bakery

Vegetable pasties going in the oven to cook
Vegetable pasties going in the oven to cook

This was preceded by a visit to the Barossa Farmer’s Market, held every Saturday in the Vintners Sheds info@barossafarmersmarket.com
Barossa Farmer’s Market

Here you’ll find locally made breads, cheeses, sauces, pickles and condiments and locally grown olives, fruits and vegetables. The range of apple varieties was impressive and the little garlic seeds, from matured garlic flowers (just let the plants go to flower then seed) were a revelation. Hot and spicy and very more-ish!

Sour dough bread
Sour dough bread

And, one last pic – me at dinner with Paul Mercurio, star of stage and screen, including the movie Strictly Ballroom and television series Dancing with the Stars, at dinner at Yalumba Winery, Australia’s oldest family-owned winery in Eden Valley (close to Barossa Valley), South Australia. A few days more in Adelaide, then off to Kangaroo Island!
Julie Biuso and Paul Mercurio

Life of a Peach

Sunday, May 2nd, 2010

My washing debacle continues…

Life of a peach

Oh help! Son discovered his pink shirt – the one I turned a yucky mauve by washing it with something blue. When he found his new blue singlet last week he was curious, even bemused, but now he’s put two and two together… I hid the shirt before fleeing to Australia. But he found it yesterday and texted to say he was ‘really not impressed with the change of colour’. I replied ‘Eek! Twas an accident. Your blue jumper did it. Very sorry. Luv u.’ Then he replied, ‘Caught out. DISCOVERED. Haha. Love you too. Ya deeeek.’ I suppose my son calling me a dick is small price to pay. I had imagined worse.

But I had a conversation yesterday with a young thin blonde thing who berated me for still doing my son’s washing. You’ll make it hard for his girlfriend or future wife, she grizzled. Maybe, I said, but I like doing washing. In truth, even though I have a reputation for causing shrinkage and discoloration from time to time, washing, hanging it out to dry and bringing it in smelling of sunshine is one of those household tasks I enjoy. Son, for his part, loads and unloads the dishwasher, cooks great meals, puts the rubbish out, and, being 6ft 2”, is very handy at removing spiders from the ceiling and getting suitcases down from the top cupboard. I think the most important thing to teach is to SHARE the load.

That’s how I see it anyway.