Wednesday, 28 November 2012


I'm afraid to say that I have been somewhat shirking my housewifely duties recently while I have been living through my flower/gardening obsession. This has been causing my husband some angst as dinners have tended to be tediously repetitive, usually something with salad.....every single night of the of the week and because he just doesn't understand my gardening fixation.....he doesn't hold back when he says that it makes me seem prematurely middle aged. Insert snort of derision from me.

In my dreams I live in an utopian idyll where in my suburban backyard I grow all of our fruit and my reality my vegetable patch is somewhat neglected and choked with inedible lettuce and coriander that has bolted to seed. I console myself with the fact that many of the flowers that I tend with such care....nasturtiums, pansies, borage and marigolds can be mixed into a salad and eaten, conveniently, as can the dreaded weed, oxalis. In my quest for self sufficiency I still long for a sheep....although my husband points out that I struggle to look after the 2 adults, 4 children, 2 geriatric beagles and 1,000 worms.....safely ensconced in the worm farm.....that are already in my care. I live in hope.

I used to find cooking everything from scratch therapeutic yet now I'm flabbergasted that I ever had the time. So, at the end of my tether last week I succumbed I bought Jamie's 15 Minute Meals: 

I must say that I was sceptical, yet so far it has passed my intensive testing and give or take 5 minutes, everything that I have made has been on the platter within the 15 minute timeframe and quite frankly, the food is delicious.

On Friday I made 'Golden Scallops Sun - Blush Mash & Greens':

On Saturday it was 'Chorizo & Squid Greek - Style Couscous Salad':

On Sunday 'Glazed Sizzling Chops Sweet Tomato & Lasagnetti':

And last night 'Incredibly Delicious Chicken Salad':

I've since learnt on Instagram that Jamie's 15 Minute Meals is available at Kmart for $25, so as a convert I might have to go and buy a few copies as Christmas presents.

As proof that we really aren't boring, staid, stay at home forty somethings, on Sunday we led a family expedition to David Walsh's free concert 'Standing in the Shadows of MONA' a Motown inspired sing along accompanied by the Southern Gospel Choir on the lawn at MONA. Most of Hobart was there from oldies in wheelchairs to newborn babies and EVERYONE in between.....there was barely a blade of grass to be seen:

Let's face it, MONA, David Walsh's own temple of art and hedonism has made Hobart cool. Thanks David!

My children are always embarrassed to see me sing out the supermarket....along with the radio in the car......on the lawn at MONA. Yet how could I resist as they worked up a rendition of one of those old disco anthems, The Jackson Five's classic 'Don't Blame it on the Boogie'. Memories of how wee used to boogie on down to this song at Launceston's nasty nightclub 'Hot Gossip' or rather 'Hot Vomit' came flooding back. For me this one song brought back in vivid detail the halcyon days of the early nineties.....on the multicoloured chequerboard back lit dance floor al la 'Saturday Night Fever' when we knew all the moves. I restrained from demonstrating them publicly on Sunday.

Brian Ritchie, one of the Violent Femmes was also on stage at MONA, as he too calls Hobart home. Remember the Violent Femmes? To me one of their albums takes me back to the year when a friend on a local B & S organising committee gave me and a couple of the girls a gig cleaning all of the dirty plastic glasses from the year return for a free ticket. The things that you do. There were sights in the bottom of some of those glasses that I wished I'd never clapped eyes on. Anyway, the night before the party, in a shearing shed somewhere in a paddock, the Violent Femmes was playing at full volume on the ghetto farmer kept turning it down....because his grandmother, who lived 8 kms up the road, might hear it and be offended by some of the lyrics. True story.

And this weekend I have another opportunity to regress back into my misspent youth, when we go to see Blondie live.....with a friend who used to know every single word to the rap part of 'Rapture'. I wonder if she still does.



  1. I have already bought my kids one each for Christmas! I hate most things to do with cooking, apart from making the odd sweet thing, so am not the slightest bit interested in reading the recipes, but would be happy to partake of some! x

    1. Yes, the recipes that I've tried so far really are delicious and when they only take 15 minutes the incentive is more than there.....Rx


  2. NOW you've done it. I have 'Don't Blame It On The Boogie' going around and around in my head. Miss Romy, you have the BEST taste in music. Feel we should give you the job of DJ on the bus.
    Did you see the cover story on David in the Good Weekend, or The Australian? (One of them) It was interesting to see how he made his money from gambling and then used it for such a good cause. I admire the man.

  3. Sorry! I fear if you let me loose I'd be unceremoniously booted off the bus!
    David is a v interesting man and I really admire what his vision has been for is unashamedly a monument to himself in an amazing building, surrounded by a top rate restaurant and cafes and a vineyard where they make wine and beer....what more could you want?! it really has to be seen to be believed....and here it is in the outer suburbs of Hobart! Rx

  4. I'm planning on doing a trip to MONA at some stage..... its on my lengthy to do list. Oh you should definitely have busted out the moves in front of your kids. That's what parents are supposed to do. I can remember my mother twisting to "twist and shout" and the enormous embarrassment that my sisters and I endured as a result. Will have to check out the new Jamie book. I love his cook books, everything works and the recipes are very easy for family meals xx

  5. I have added that cookbook to my Christmas list!
    I have another Jamie Oliver cookbook that I love.
    And the 20 minute meals app is good too!

    And now I have Violent Femmes in my a blister in the sun!

  6. I saw Blondie Live in 2004 and she was FAB!!!! Esp when she sang Hanging on the telephone.

    I know all the words to all Violent Femmes songs because that cassette was played a LOT in 1985 which was my 1st year at boarding school.

    I am already panicked about my May 2013 wardrobe. PANNICKED I tell you x

  7. also, all my meals take about 10 minutes to action. People are taking longer?????

  8. Of course I remember the Violent Femmes! Even saw them in concert while at university - great concert, the set list read like their "best of"! Thanks also go out to Mother Down Under for getting Blister in the Sun stuck in my head, too...

  9. Will have to check out the book- love watching Jamie on TV!

  10. Definitely remember The Violent Femmes. So many dance floors in so many dodgy night clubs....

    The Farmer and I frequently embarrass our kids - we consider it our parental duty.

    I made some sort of burger arrangement from the 15 Minute Meals TV show. It involved beer and seeded mustard in the patties and was yummy and everyone ate it. (I left the mustard out of the children's patties.) I honestly think it took even less then 15 mins if that is possible.

    Take care.

  11. One word. Blister. That. Is. All. J x


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