NB: This post says it was posted on the 12th of August but it was the 13th in Australia :D
CCU woke up, a grin widening from ear to ear. She was 17, the big 1-7? Naah, just 17 :D – the big one would be coming in a year but she was so not going to think of that!
She didn’t feel different, nor did she feel particularly older but OMG, she was 17 and she felt very very excited :D :D :D
To celebrate son anniversaire, she [had her daddy ;)] treat her whole family to a wonderfully big and luscious breakfast. Toast dripping with butter, pancakes… what else could a girl want to turn 17 with???
Yep, that’s right, it’s my 17th birthday today :D
Exciting, awesome and a little frightening (at the prospect of getting closer to 18) but hey, whatever right? Live in the moment thing happening right here no? :D
Anyway, as family tradition for any birthday, we all go out for dinner to a nice place. As you can see by my reviews, I have had more than enough dinners lately so I mixed it up a little and we all went out for a nice, local breakfast :)
It is so small, cosy and already the quality of food is evident when you see the fantastic array of cakes and muffins on display *birthday swoon!*
Can you believe that they prefer to have a booking on the weekends? Small it may be but unpopular it was not! Had we arrived only 10 or 15 minutes later, there would not have been space for 6 people! We were luckily seated and even though it was outside, the heater was very strong and warm to beat the August winds and the covering was sturdy. So many plusses!
Now we got to ordering. Drinks first of course! My grandparents and parents, being the adults they are, of course opted for the as-large-as-they-can-get cappuccinos. According to all, they were perfectly hot and with a beautiful flavour. I just love how it looks :)
Another thing that I love the look of was my own drink, the Vienna Chocolate. No, not hot chocolate. Way too low class :P – I mean seriously, can’t you see I am sophisticated now, a grown up? Geez, I don’t want marshmallows anymore!
*Everything in italics is a big fat lie! :P – who could ever be too old for marshmallows?
Anyway, getting back to the review, it was beautifully presented and I loved the flavour of the chocolate itself. I did however have an issue with them using the totally artificial tasting canned whipped cream on top and the chocolate itself barely burnt my tongue. Just a bit hotter would have been tonnes better, especially in the biting cold!
Next, we got served. Literally :D
My dad was the only meaty man of the day, and ordered the typical big breakfast with perfectly cooked sausages and crispy bacon, nestled alongside the classics like hash browns and buttery scrambled eggs.
My brother and Baba (grandpa) got the big vegetarian breakfast, which looked absolutely incredible. I loved the addition of avocado to it, as my mum pointed out, it was so well rounded and the perfect breakfast to kick off the day with – protein, carbs, good fat and vegetables! According to my brother, the avocado worked perfectly with the other delicious components such as the butter sautéed mushrooms and roasted tomato. My Mumma (grandma), shared with Baba and they also ordered an extra side of thick cut toast. Yum right?
Speaking of thick cut toast… ma and I shared two dishes. Let me talk of the toast first, which was fantastic, and the best dish second! (telling you what? That it is better than fantastic? You bet it was :D)
The toast is actually thick cut. Not semi-thick, not fat as a loaf, but perfect. White bread as it was a special occasion, slathered in butter, it really did not get better.
But then it did. We ordered one serve traditional pancakes, minus the whipped cream, with vanilla ice cream and maple syrup. Oh. Wow. These pancakes stole the show and were the apple of my eye for this breakfast. They were SO super fluffy, it is NOT even funny. This fluffiness worked in such a way that it soaked up the syrup. And then it became a delicious, slightly soggy, fluffcake. Doused in more maple syrup. Heaven…
- Friendly service, pretty efficient, though my mum’s second order for a coffee was forgotten (it seems to be a theme of forgetting the second drink, something all restaurants should work on!)
- Water was provided without asking, cutlery was given :)
- I think napkins on each table (extra) would be a nice touch
Booking: Recommended on weekends
Address & Contact Details
Shop 101, Stockland Mall
375-383 Windsor Road
Baulkham Hills, 2153
Phone Number: 9639 4446
Now, what is a birthday without a birthday cake right? Well, we did have a cake. My lovely grandparents very generously bought me home, 1 week early, a HUGE chocolate mudcake from Michel’s Patisserie, topped with ganache and beautiful white chocolate shells. I would have taken a picture of it but I was a little preoccupied with eating it…
But I am borrowing my neighbour, PDS’s photo, of when I gave her slice when we were studying together – Neighbour perks for the win :D
So I decided upon this crispy, delectable, spice filled, caramel flowing, nutty apple strudel. You heard me. Sounds like quite a treat right? :)
Yes, yes the flaky delicious golden puff pastry was not made by me BUT WATCH OUT, because when I get some proper time, that is my next quest ;)
When heated up, the caramel adds a whole new sweet dimension and you fall in love with the concept of a strudel all over again my friends, I promise you!
Caramel Apple Strudel
Adapted from: Beyond Kimchee
- 2 sheets puff pastry, room temperature (I had mine out 5 minutes from the fridge and it was fine, and this is in winter!)
- 4 pink lady apples, peeled and cored
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp allspice
- 3 tbs white sugar
- Few drops lemon juice
- 2 tbs orange zest
- 2 tbs flour/cornstarch
- 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
- 1/4 cup caramel chips
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 tbs golden syrup
- 2 tbs bread crumbs
- 1 egg + milk/melted butter (for brushing)
- Preheat oven to 190 degrees C
- Chop apples into small pieces (I left mine a little bit, next time smaller) – need to have 2 cups of chopped apple
- Mix together apple, spices, white sugar, zest, lemon juice and flour – set aside for 20 minutes so that the apples can release their juices
- In a separate bowl, combine nuts, chips, brown sugar, syrup and bread crumbs
- Roll out the puff pastries to make it as thin as possible (approximately 10 inches by 12 inches) – be very generous in how much you flour your bench, hands and rolling pin
- Sprinkle half the nut mixture in a column near the middle of one pastry and top generously with apple mixture
- Lift up the front side of the pastry and cover the apples and then start rolling all the way
- Pinch the ends and tuck underneath. Repeat with the remaining pastry and mixture
- Place both logs on a baking sheet with baking paper on it, seams down
- Brush the top with chosen wash.
- Slit a few holes to allow steam to escape
- Bake for 35-40 minutes or until pastry is golden brown – serve warm as desired with cream/ ice cream/both :D
- If you can, keep the pastry at room temperature inside an airtight container because the fridge makes the pastry soggy and not as crisp – this is a good method for up to 2 days
- To reheat, preheat oven to 190 degrees C, cover with foil and bake for 10-15 minutes – remove the foil carefully (very hot) and serve
- The caramel may leak out of the pastry and that is ok but it is boiling hot so be careful taking the strudels out of the oven