Surfers Paradise Beach Cafe, Surfers Paradise QLD ($)

Address: 4 The Esplanade, Surfers Paradise, QLD

Tel: (07) 5527 6183

Website: http://www.thesurfersparadisebeachcafe.com/

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The day after we visited Muse, MC and I stumbled across Surfer’s Beach Cafe on our morning walk to the beach.

Atmosphere

It was quite crowded as it was peak breakfast period and the cafe is located at an ideal spot, right opposite the beach.

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In order to order we needed a table to sit at, so we stood around for a few minutes waiting.  We were a bit disappointed that there were about two to three tables of families that were taking up more space than they needed.  If they had moved down the table a bit we would have had plenty of room to sit.

Despite the wait for a table, we eventually found a seat by the entrance.

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The cafe has a lovely laid back surfer atmosphere.  There are surfboards on the wall and lots of yellow, blue and white around the room.

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The tables are a sort of old, worn white and the place gives off a very calm and chilled out vibe, except for the hustle and bustle of the busy diners.

Service

Service wasn’t very prominent as you have to order at the counter, which is probably a good idea given how popular the place is! Despite this, our food came out within about ten minutes and the staff were quick when we asked for things like serviettes and salt.

Food

I ordered a Tropicana Smoothie which was a very tropical combination of mango, pineapple, passionfruit and banana, some of my favourite fruits.

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Tropicana Smoothie, $8.50

For breakky I had the Big Beach Breakfast and MC ordered the Stack of Pancakes.

The breakfast was great, it was colourful and tasted flavoursome, the eggs were perfectly poached, the hashbrowns were crunchy, the bacon crisp and the tomato fresh.

Overall it was a pretty darn good fry up.

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Big Beach Breakfast, $19.50

MC’s pancakes were amazing, some of the best I have had.

I am a big fan of the thick, fluffy pancakes, the McDonald’s style ones that soak up all the syrup and just melt in your mouth. None of this crepe business.

These pancakes were all that and more.  They came with a side of butter, maple syrup and whipped cream and they were absolutely delicious.

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Stack of Pancakes, $9.95

Summary

Surfers Beach Cafe is one of those great finds that has a great view, a lovely atmosphere and a fantastic menu.  The wait can be a little frustrating but it was worth it for the view!

Rating

I would rate my experience (out of 10):

  • Service-  4
  • Food-  8
  • Atmosphere- 8
  • Value – 7.5

The Surfers Paradise Beach Cafe on Urbanspoon

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Banoffee Pie (serves 6)

Banoffee pie is one of those recipes that is growing increasingly popular. I had heard about it from friends, seen it on other websites and blogs, and finally, a colleague made one and brought it into work.

A banoffee pie is basically a biscuit base, a caramel or dulce de leche filling, topped with bananas, whipped cream, and dusted with cocoa powder.

I decided to try making one myself and used the Carnation recipe with condensed milk to speed up the caramel cooking process.

I was surprised at how easy this was to make and I’ll definitely be trying it again as everyone loved it! Such a change from the usual chocolate or lemon tarts.

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Ingredients:

  • For the base:

100g melted butter
250g digestive or plain biscuits, crushed

  • For the caramel:

100g butter
100g brown soft sugar
397g tin condensed milk

  • For the top:

4 small bananas
300ml thickened cream, whipped
Grated chocolate or cocoa powder, to dust

Method:

1.  Pulse biscuits in a food processor until they resemble breadcrumbs.

2. Grease a 20cm loose bottomed cake tin.

3. Put the biscuits in a bowl and add the melted butter, mix well until combined. Then spoon the mixture into the cake tin and press into the sides to make a pie shell. Chill in the fridge for 10-15 minutes.

4. Melt butter and sugar in a non-stick saucepan over low heat, stirring until sugar has dissolved.

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5. Add condensed milk to the butter and sugar mix and stir rapidly. Bring to the boil (for at least 1 minute) and stir until a thick caramel is formed.

6. Spread the caramel over the base, cool in the fridge for 1 hour or until set.

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7. Remove the pie from the tin and place on a serving plate.

8. Top with sliced bananas, then whipped cream. Dust with cocoa powder or grated chocolate.

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The Butcher’s Block, Wahroonga ($$)

Address: 15 Redleaf Ave, Wahroonga NSW

Tel: (02) 9487 8136

Website: http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Butchers-Block

Opening hours:

Sunday- Closed

Monday – Saturday: 6:00 am – 5:00 pm

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Prowsey and I decided to catch up for some Saturday morning brekky. Prowsey is one of my best friends and although we are both pretty busy with work and other commitments we have been making more of an effort to catch up regularly.

We decided to head over to Butcher’s Block to try out the brekky menu.

I had been here before with ClareBear and really enjoyed it and Prowsey has been a few times as well.

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Service

I arrived at Butcher’s Block at about 10.15 am. The plan was to meet at 10.30 am and I expected that Prowsey would be a bit late – as she usually is- but wanted to get there early to get a table.

When I got there I stood around the front for a bit before finding the person with the “magic clipboard” which would get you a table. After writing my name down on the list, I waited about 30 mins standing outside.

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I must admit that the system at Butcher’s Block is not the best. If I had not been there before I might have been waiting outside for a long time before I realised that I needed to put my name on a list. I think a better system would be for the person with the clipboard to either wait outside to greet guests or for them to have the clipboard outside with a sign telling people to write their names on it (similar to that at Sushi Hotaru).

Either way, despite the poor organisation of the “magic clipboard”, Prowsey arrived at about 10.45 and we finally got a seat inside.

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Service was pretty good – our food was brought out quickly and everyone was really friendly, helpful and polite.

The one issue I had was that they seemed to be hurrying us up to leave. We felt that they would constantly come over to us and ask us how we were going or clearing plates as soon as we put the fork and knife down. Understandably they are really busy and want to get people in and out, but you certainly feel it! Not the place to go when you want to take your time eating and drinking.

Atmosphere

Atmosphere was lovely and exciting, full of the clinks of forks and knives and people talking. The cute decor is perfect for the spot (see my previous post on The Butcher’s Block for more details), and luckily it wasn’t raining so the beautiful sunshine was streaming through the windows and open outdoor seating at the back.

Overall it’s a pretty nice and peaceful spot and quite cosy too if not for the fact that it is so busy!

Food

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Prowsey decided to order the Big Breakfast with a side of mushrooms. Prowsey loves mushrooms and was pleased with the large quantity of mushrooms she got for only $4.00. She also enjoyed the sourdough bread and lovely eggs. She also had two skim cappuccinos which were beautifully presented and which came out really quickly.

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I ordered the Ricotta Pancakes with Caramelised Bananas and Cream. The ricotta pancakes were soft and thick, deliciously puffy and melt in your mouth good. The bananas were cooked in the pan until they were just soft on the outside, and the caramel on top was crunchy and hard, adding a bitterness to the starchy bananas and sweet pancakes. The dish was delicious and I thoroughly enjoyed it, would definitely get it again.

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The coffee was delicious and although I don’t drink coffee that often I had two cups- a latte and a capp! They also do takeaway which seems to be popular with the soccer and rugby mums in the area!

Cost:

Overall my meal cost $23.00

Rating:

I would rate my experience (out of 10):

  • Service- 5.5
  • Food- 8.5
  • Ambience- 6
  • Value –6 

The Butcher's Block on Urbanspoon

Healthy and Easy Blueberry & Banana Muffins

These are the easiest blueberry muffins around! It took me about 5-10 minutes to prepare the mix and then 20 minutes to cook it.

The muffins turned out delicious and soft in the centre and were the perfect treat for morning tea! Try this recipe out for yourself!

Ingredients:

  • 2.5 cups self raising flour
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 Tbs caster sugar
  • 3/4 cup milk + extra milk
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1 Tsp vanilla essence
  • 1/2 Tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 Tsp nutmeg
  • 1.5 smashed bananas
  • 1/2 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1/4 cup rolled oats

Method: 

1. Preheat oven to 180C and line a 12 hole muffin tray with baking paper or patty pans.

2. Combine the flour, caster sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and oats in a bowl.

3. Add milk, egg, oil, and vanilla and mix until just combined.

4. Fold in blueberries and mashed banana. If the mixture is too dry add a little more milk.

5. Spoon mixture into the muffin tray and bake for 20-25 minutes until the tops are golden and a skewer comes out clean. Leave to cool for 1-2 minutes then transfer to a wire rack.

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Enjoy!

Easiest Date & Walnut Banana Bread

Today I decided to make some banana bread. Being the first time I’ve ever made banana bread, I was a little worried but it turned out fine. One thing I would change would be the time I baked the bread for- next time I’ll put it in the oven for about 5-10 minutes less as the top was a little crunchy.

Here’s the recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups self-raising flour
  • 1/3 cups brown or raw sugar
  • Handful of chopped walnuts and dates
  • 1 Tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 eggs lightly whisked
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 large mashed bananas

Method:

1. Preheat oven to 180C and line a 20 x 10 cm loaf pan with baking paper/oil.

2. Sift the flour, bicarbonate of soda into a bowl.

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3. Add sugar, walnuts, dates and stir to combine.

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4. Add the milk, whisked egg and banana and fold using a spatula until combined.

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5. Pour the mixture into the lined pan and bake for 45-50 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.

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6. Let the pan rest for 15minutes then transfer to a wire rack and allow to cool completely.
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7. Cut slices and serve (great with a cup of tea or coffee!)

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Cafe Neptune, Brighton le sands

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Cafe Neptune, Brighton le sands

Address: 87 The Grand Parade  Brighton-Le-Sands NSW 2216

Telephone: (02) 9567 8590

Website: http://www.cafeneptune.com.au/

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Everyone knows I am a HUGEEE chocolate fan so it was no surprise when I wanted to order this delicious nutella banana crepe at Neptune’s AFTER dinner!

It was delicious, if not a little rich, and I highly recommend it to chocolate lovers anywhere!

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Cafe Neptune on Urbanspoon