I have an alcohol problem.
I’m not an alcoholic or anything. It’s just that when I bake, I seem to always drift towards recipes laced with wine, vodka or something else only accessible to those of legal drinking age. – I figure if you’re going to go all out and indulge in loads of sugar and butter, you may as well spike it for good measure.
I feel like October is the perfect time for picnics, no matter where you are in the world. In the northern hemisphere everyone’s getting excited about autumn leaves, pumpkins and tartan blankets. Down here, we’re making the most of the sun and warm weather before the heat gets completely insane.
Picnics are social, fun and eating outside is actually good for you, but so far this season, I’ve found it hard to organise one. People are happy to go out for breakfast, sit in the park with sushi or even organise a full blown barbecue at home, but everyone seems to think picnics are hard. And I blame Pinterest.
These days, it’s like you didn’t actually have a picnic unless your perfect plaid blanket was covered in supermodel friends, an elaborate cheese platter and a butt load of pastel macarons with champagne flutes and silver knives. But let’s be real – you really just need some snacks, a patch of grass and just other person you really like.
Armed thanks to the lovely people at Talking Tables*, I think I’ve managed to find the perfect balance. Here are my tips for pulling together a picnic that looks cute AF and and takes next to no effort, so you can sit back and actually enjoy the food and sunshine.
Getting back my fit, 2012, boyfriend-in-Afghanistan-for-six-months-and-I-had-too-much-time-on-my-hands body is on my list for this year. 2015 me is going about getting it a different way, however. And that way is low carb.
I realize how tragic this sounds. Once you rule out grapefruits and the ice cream cleanse, Atkins is the easy target of all diet jokes. I’m not on the Atkins diet, nor Healthy Inspirations or paleo. I’m basically just eating lots of protein and even more veggies, with nuts and the occasional piece of fruit thrown in. Like clean eating, but with cheese and a relaxed attitude to treating yo’self.
After two years of trainers saying “you need more fuel!” and prescribing brown rice with every meal, this took some getting used to. Unfortunately starchy carbs aren’t nicotine and they don’t make quitting patches, so I’ve been making do with a certain white veggie who has been my transition buddy over the last 5 weeks: cauliflower.
I love Australia Day. As much as our national holiday gets a bad rap, there’s just something that sets it apart from our other long weekends. There’s no pressure for it to be a religious/serious/family-based affair – just the last public holiday of summer where you’re allowed to eat as much pie, prawns and pavlova as you want, listen to Cold Chisel and INXS (and the Hottest 100, but only after the first 50 dud songs are over)