New Menu

Take 2: My Food Bag- Healthy Recipes‎ Made at Home

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What a surprise we are halfway through winter. With this cold season making feel a little insecure about my eating habits, we’ve become attached to My Food Bag, so that we can ease our way through to eating healthy again and reminding ourselves that there’s FRESH fruit and vegetables options for when we cook at home. 

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That healthy rainbow spread right at your door step.

There has been some recent improvements that My Food Bag product and experience made. 

New Monday AM delivery time – Enjoy delivery while you sleep! My Food Bag now offers their foodies the added convenience of a NEW delivery window, Monday 2:00am – 7:00am. Win back your weekend and wake up to a delivery on your doorstep! It’s all part of continuing to offer a convenient service to suit the busy lives of their foodies.

New planet-friendly packaging – My Food Bag is committed to delivering their foodies only the freshest seasonal produce available, in packaging which is planet-friendly. They’re now delivering the goodness in their 100% recyclable Chilltainers and Brown Paper Boxes, all kept cool by their new recyclable ice bricks. This new packaging has replaced their traditional bags to continue to ensure the best quality delivery service.

New suppliers – My Food Bag has teamed up with a number of new local suppliers to continue to bring their foodies only the best! While of course remaining free-range, organic and sustainably sourced (wherever possible)

Reduced recipe times – A team of nutritionists and dietitians have been working hard to reduce their recipe preparation time, while retaining variation and a healthy balance of ingredients

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No kidding about freshest local Australian produce, meat and fish.

Let’s experience first-hand the following changes… 🙂 Excited (*Insert* happy dance)

Now let’s start with delivery…I must say My Food Bag does keep you informed through email and text, even days before your order, so that you are aware your groceries are coming. Thumb up for that top quality service. Whilst I was in bed dreaming about the things I’m going to cook for that week I did receive 2 alerts on my phone; one for when they deliver and the other saying my groceries are in front of my door.

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Delivery came on time just before I head to work. Many ticks for that!

Unpacked my goodies around 8am and they were still nice and chilled. I could smell all the ingredients even before I had opened the brown box. Now that’s another thumb up for quality food supplies.

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Didn’t need to waste time hitting the markets to find fresh meat. Thumbs up for that effort!

I dare you to take a peek at the latest scrumdiddlyumptious creations from Nadia Lim and her team for easy recipes cooked in your very own kitchen.

Day 1: MEXICAN FISH & SWEET POTATO NACHO BOWLS

Taste: An old-fashioned favorite made with the freshest of ingredients. Enjoyed tasting the blend of vegetables with the marinated spice mix fish. It seriously was fresh from the fields to my dinner table. My tastebuds could separately taste the cubes fresh fish and veggies. The only thing that bugged me was my sweet potato wasn’t cooked as I followed the recipe. Other than that this was an earth friendly meal.

Verdict: Let’s taco bout this recipe baby, it felt like a fun Friday night meal that was super perfect for my boring Monday night in. I spiced up my nacho bowls with edible Old El Paso Stand ‘n Stuff soft tortilla bowls instead of using the suggested homeware bowls. I mean life is easier when everything is edible, right? Muahahaha. Saved myself from cleaning more dishes by adding my own idea to this dish and yes I was completely stuffed with two nacho bowls.

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There’s something fishy about this dinner…haha.

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Mexican Fish & Sweet Potato Nacho Bowls

Day 2: PARMESAN & BASIL CHICKEN WITH LEMON POTATOES & CHARRED GREENS

Taste: Might I say fresh, generous, and prepared to perfection, this chicken stuffed with parmesan and basil will leave you wanting more. I was stunned that I made this all by myself. It truly had extraordinary flavours that I never knew it was possible. Don’t normally eat chicken breasts because it always turns out dry for me whenever I cook it, but nope not these breasts. Super juicy because of the parmesan. Loved the fragrant of the basil, garlic and red onion whilst it was cooking in the oven. Gold medal for the rich and hearty flavour.

Verdict: I’m really not sure what to say because I have never been in this kind of situation before, but HEAVENS YES I’d make this again, any day. First time stuffing these breasts with an intriguing filling that I could not have imagined. A delicious and easy-to-prepare chicken breasts that makes a great presentation and fills up any big stomach. Felt guilty (NOT) eating parmesan for a Tuesday night but when it’s mixed with red onion, basil and garlic, you know you have to let the guilty card slide. Thank the veggie gods for arriving on time to balance this meal. So far so good! I think this has become my signature dish for when friends come over to eat.

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There’s there’s THERE’S parmesan in this dish 😀

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This is new for me…parmesan, basil, garlic, lemon and red onion mixed together…

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 Using toothpicks for this recipe. Don’t pick on my breasts! Haha

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Just winged it. Teeheehee.

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Parmesan & Basil Chicken with Lemon Potatoes & Charred Greens

Day 3: GARAM MASALSA BEEF WITH MUSHROOMS RAGOUT SPINCH & FLATBREADS

Taste: Sadly this dish was my least favourite (insert sad face) because it didn’t blend so well together. I wasn’t a huge fan of the sourness taste of the tomato base dish, then moving on to the creamy mayo flavour from the spinach and finally the garam masala beef strips. Don’t get me wrong, all 3 dishes had a full burst of flavour, but it wasn’t what I was expecting. On a much happier note I enjoyed dipping my Lebanese slice bread into the mushroom ragout.

Verdict: It’s a great destination meal for those who heart mushroom and cherry tomatoes. Would suggest to substitute the spinach with cos lettuce so it would marry so well with the garam masala beef strips. I had plenty of leftovers and decided to mix the mushroom ragout with brown rice and as for the gram masalsa beef it turned out to be a kebab using the bread and adding with spinach.

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Garam Masalsa Beef with Mushrooms Ragout Spinch & Flatbreads

Day 4: LAMB LEG STEAKS WITH CORIANDER PESTO LEMON KALE & RICE

Taste: Silver medal for this dish as there was no game smell of the lamb and who knew you could cook kale. I was shocked you could mix lamb with sweet chilli sauce. It was a great steak that was so juicy that you accidentally bursted the water pipe…well almost. Loved the subtle hints of sweet, chilli from the lamb and as for the kale…OH MY! Incredible flavour that I wished I found this sooner. As for the rice I totally forgot about that being there because I was so distracted by that lamb leg and veggies.

Verdict: I am very like VERY sensitive to wanting to cook lamb  in my own kitchen and eating kale during dinner time because both don’t mix so well in my books, but I was wrong. A winning pair of kale and lamb leg bursted intense flavors and alluring aromas. Loved the serving of solider carrots and mountains of kale.

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There’s lamb leg and kale on the menu…first time cooking these ingredients.

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Lamb Leg Steaks with Coriander Pesto Lemon Kale & Rice

Day 5: BACON & ZUCCHINI RISOTTO WITH PEAR & PARMESAN SALAD

Taste: This dish didn’t go bacon my heart…thank the food gods, instead it was warming my heart. This risotto covered in a decadent creamy texture and dusted with parmesan made me lick my plate clean. A healthy pile of greens with the added pear fruit as a side salad offered a bright crunch when paired with the risotto.

Verdict: I must say I’m surprised with this recipe. Risotto is something I don’t normally whip up in the kitchen because rice doesn’t cook properly, but it turned out very smooth and creamy.  As for a salad that has slices of pear in it, impressive. I do like pear salad now, thanks to My Food Bag!

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It’s so hot inside, I’m bacon!

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Bacon & Zucchini Risotto with Pear & Parmesan Salad

Thoughts about My Food Bag

Regards to the following changes that was mentioned at the beginning of this post, let’s see if it approved on the Nessy Eater radar.

  1. Delivery time – Spot on with timing and they text you before and after to confirm delivery to your home 
  2. Packaging – Can’t blame if it’s recyclable and helping the environment 
  3. Food Products – Still impressed with the high quality and fresh ingredients. I’m still intrigued with lamb leg steaks! YUM! 
  4. Reduced recipe times – 4 out of 5 recipes was super easy to assemble as it only required chopping and assembling the ingredients into one pot, so yes it did reduce 5-15 minutes. 

Other notes

  • My Food Bag menus use only fresh seasonal produce, so there’s nothing frozen and they choose free-range and sustainably farmed products
  • Nutritionally balanced meals for all 5 nights
  • Read more here

When it comes to purchasing a week’s worth of groceries, it’s frightening to try new things for example purchasing new meat parts, spices or vegetables because it’s very costly and it takes so much of your time thinking about what to make out of it, but with My Food Bag they’ve done the dirty work for you.

Overall my view on My Food Bag hasn’t changed even for my previous review. My Food Bag does an excellent job with providing fresh ingredients and delicious recipes that can cater for those who cannot cook (that’s me).

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Photos by Vanny Tang

Disclaimer: Nessy Eater received a trial of My Food Bag-Classic, thanks to My Food Bag.

Opinions are however, Nessy Eater’s own.

Check out other My Food Bag post I did. Click here.

Like to know more about Nessy Eater food adventures?

Follow Nessy Eater on Instagram / Facebook / Twitter or feel free to leave a YUMMY comment 😀

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Crazy for Candeloris |Smithfield

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The Candelori’s restaurant has operated for the past 36 years, and recently been reviewed by Gault & Millau 2015. Since opening in 1999, the restaurant has gained a reputation for providing delicious Italian food including house-made pasta made from scratch and with an atmosphere that feels extravagant and classy that suits both social and business occasions. Candelori’s is a true dining destination for all foodies who love Italian cuisine from the Western suburbs and beyond.

Candeloris_Nessy Eater (0)What a lovely restaurant to dine at.

We are off to a great start with these tall, fluffy garlic bread sticks ($9?) with the obvious ingredient…minced garlic. We sure took our time with these as it seemed so great to dunk these solider boys into the entree and pasta base.

Candeloris_Nessy Eater (1)Garlic Bread Sticks ($9?) 

I was a fool to think the pan seared scallops ($27) could be shared between two people along with Jerusalem artichokes, nduja and watercress. I was not trustworthy to evenly distribute the scallops as it turned out I had 3/4 quarters of this entree. Whoopsh!

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Pan Seared Scallops ($27)

There is no reason not to become a vegetarian anymore because the crumbed eggplant ($27) with Buffalo mozzarella served with pormodoro sure disguised itself as a BIG piece of steak. It’s extraordinary how the texture of this eggplant can almost, I mean ALMOST fit into the meat category. I was fooled by the presentation and AGAIN fooled by the texture. It really knew how to show-off that tomato surrounding.

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Crumbed Eggplant ($27)

Look what do we have here! Hand cut pappardelle osso buco ragu($29) – The ribbon egg pasta is made fresh daily at the restaurant and provides the perfect consistency of texture and flavour. A lot of muscle work goes out to these pastas and marinating the veal shank ragu, so make sure you lick your bowls clean, CLEAN I TELL YOU.

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Hand cut pappardelle osso buco ragu ($29)

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Only ribbons I’d eat!

We couldn’t miss the opportunity to give the squid ink tagliolini with scampi and scallops ($36) a try with baby calamari and cherry tomatoes. This ex-SQUID-ite dish may be a hit or a miss, depending how madly in love you are with having squid ink as your main ingredient. It certainly is a tad saltier than other pasta dishes, but married so well with the seafood.

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Squid Ink Tagliolini with Scampi and Scallops ($36)

Candeloris_Nessy Eater (9)Dive right into those tentacles…I mean tagliolini.

Candeloris_Nessy Eater (7)Hmmm fresh seafood in my belly.

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I think I wouldn’t mind having a few glasses of wine, please…

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Dining area at Candelori’s

Listen up kids. I turned into GODZILLA when the san valentino ($18) arrived. This dish took me to a HAPPY PLACE with the white chocolate mousseraspberry jelly and biscotti. My claws came out when there was only…

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That presentation of the San Valentino ($18)

Candeloris_Nessy Eater (14)Where do I even begin?!?!

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That inner photo…you like?

There may have been a little tension between me and my partner in crime when the indulgence ($18) had magically appeared at the table. With a total of 70% dark chocolate, passionfruit curd served with a chocolate moist biscuit it’s no wonder stacks were high.

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There’s a reason why this is called indulgence ($18)

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Ready for the next photo?

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OH BOY! Come to me baby!

What do we have here…12 hours baked meringue ($18) – Yes I slowly became vulnerable when snow white crisp shell vanished into thin air along with vanilla cream, rhubarb jam, poached apple, lemon powder and a zesty sorbet.

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12 Hours Baked Meringue ($18)

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I have a lot of explaining to do…but this was just SPECTACULAR! 12 Hours and not a single sign of sunburn.

If you don’t know already Candelori’s was named in the Gault & Millau Australia in 2015. That’s incredible especially when the deserve points for their quality of freshness of produce, the creativity and professionalism of presentation and can’t forget the harmony of the menu.

Candeloris_Nessy Eater (22)Well done Candelori’s!

Till next time Candelori’s and I will have that squid ink tagliolini with scampi and scallops to myself AND each of the desserts I order too.
Candeloris_Nessy Eater (23)Photos by Vanny Tang

Disclaimer: Nessy Eater attended Candeloris, thanks to Candeloris.

Please note: Nessy Eater visited in on November 2015. Desserts change seasonally. 

Opinions are however, Nessy Eater’s own.

Like to know more about Nessy Eater food adventures?

You can follow Nessy Eater on Instagram / Facebook / Twitter or feel free to leave a YUMMY comment 😀

Candelori's Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Gypsy Dining Experience at The Emporium |Parramatta

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This year Parramatta has transformed typical quiet urban spaces into a magical vibrant world of colours, sounds and tastes. The Emporium is one of many restaurants that invite people to experience unique nightlife and for food lovers enjoy everything from European inspired delicacies to Middle Eastern flavours. The vibe is rustic style eatery and has a classy edge – draped in greenery and filled with natural light. With three separate dining areas including two alfresco spaces, a coffee roaster and a bakery, this place caters for all guests.

The Emporium_Nessy Eater (1)This is what I call enchanting courtyard party at The Emporium.

The Emporium_Nessy Eater (2)You’ll notice handmade furniture imported from Venice.

The Emporium_Nessy Eater (3)People of Parramatta you better strap yourselves in to get a glimpse of the Mediterranean Feel.

The Emporium_Nessy Eater (4)Born in Italy, raised in Australia, the Purezza sparkling water

To start we had albacore tuna tartare with miso, corn and a generous spread of avocado with squid ink puffed rice paired with St Clair Gruner Veltliner 2012, Marlborough NZ. To satisfy the omega 3 lovers this may have been ridiculously addictive, we just kept dunking the puffed rice into that gloriously fragrant smell of corn and miso. I took great delight in seeing who could grab the biggest piece of tuna. Teehee.

The Emporium_Nessy Eater (5)Albacore Tuna Tartare

General manager Dominic Borel (ex-Gazebo and the Local Taphouse) shares his tales of how he was contacted by the owners John and Sam Ayoub, who are also behind the successful chain The Coffee Emporium.

The Emporium_Nessy Eater (6)Domonic Borel

Next we have waygu beef tartare that’s finely plated with kohl rabi, eggplant, black garlic, salt and vinegar tapioca puffs paired with Soumah Savarro Savagnin 2014, Yarra Valley Vic. To add that extra texture egg yolk puree was in the house. This was a pretty entree and had a perfect rare centre. The egg yolk had me swiping the plate clean of that precious liquid puree. What surprised most guests was the droplets of black garlic that seemed to twist a lot of people’s taste buds.

The Emporium_Nessy Eater (7)Waygu Beef Tartare

The Emporium_Nessy Eater (8)Stunning Italian-villa inspired garden.

How could I resist Petuna ocean trout with a healthier option that includes thin slices of fennel, radish, apple and raspberry matched with a glass of Chateau Riotor Cote du Provence Rose, Provence FR. It is clear the highlight of this dish was the splash of pink salad. Yeah I don’t know how that happened on the one plate but I’m sure I enjoyed this. This has got to be the perfect spring colour dish. The trout was reasonably cooked and the salad married so well with the flavours. I loved the crunchy bits of the fennel and apple. It made this plate more exciting!

The Emporium_Nessy Eater (9)Petuna Ocean Trout

On a heavier side we were served with pork hock that was slow cooked for hours and HOURS in secret master stock and matched with a glass of Jed Malbec 2013, Mendoza ARG. The pork was juicy enough that it didn’t really need anything else.

The Emporium_Nessy Eater (10)Pork Hock

That GLORIOUS side view of the pork hock had my heart skip a beat. My god how GOOD was the skin?! That fat could quietly kill me. The hock was so satisfying with the candied chilli and green paw paw salad but me thinks it was missing something. Coming from an Asian background I felt like I needed to order a bowl of plain white rice. Perhaps it was the salad taste that got me wanting rice. It was evident that I enjoyed this dish because I scraped the plate clean.

The Emporium_Nessy Eater (11)There’s a hulk in my pork.

The menu, in the hands of Head Chef Robert Cannon (ex-Pony Lounge & Dining) is contemporary Australian with a Mediterranean taste. Trained in the UK mastering classic English dishes, Rob brings a wealth of experience and skills to The Emporium.

The Emporium_Nessy Eater (12)Rob Cannon 

In addition to the mouth-watering savoury menu, The Emporium has a range of cheeses to get you into the mood for the cheesy side of you. The delice de cremier had a rich, indulgent triple cream cow’s milk texutre with a soft, sweet and buttery flavour. To accompaniment there was quince paste, dried sultans, granny apple slices and gourmet wafers. The refreshing and clean taste of Walnut Block Pinot Noir 2010, Marlborough NZ was epic.

The Emporium_Nessy Eater (13)Delice De Cremier

Dessert time and we had chocolate cremeaux paired with a lovely glass of Piggs Peake Suckling Pig Sticky Shiraz 2014, Hunter Valley NSW. We were SUPER cheerful to see this sweet treat however none of us wanted to share. I believe I fell in love with the honeycomb ice cream or maybe it was the chocolate soildulce de leche and espresso gel. Every spoonful I ate had a much more intense flavour and that espresso aroma was intoxicating in a good way.

The Emporium_Nessy Eater (14)Chocolate Cremeaux

The Emporium_Nessy Eater (15)Front Entrance of The Emporium

The Emporium_Nessy Eater (16)Parramatta’s European inspired restaurant.

The Emporium is the perfect addition to Parramatta’s thriving food and cultural scene and might I add it’s a must-visit food destination with an enchanting courtyard party full of gypsy swing tunes, sights and scents of thriving romance! The menu is designed to be shared amongst friends so you better bring your angel side along.

In other news The Emporium will be celebrating Melbourne Cup in style on Tuesday 3rd November with surprise guests, best dressed awards, sweeps, screens, hats, heels and many more. Spoil yourself with canapes and champagne in Erby Place for $50 per head or champagne and sit down lunch in The Emporium and garden courtyard for $75 per head.

The Emporium_Nessy Eater (18)Now that is what I call food styling.

Disclaimer: Nessy Eater attended Gypsy Dining Experience at The Emporium, thanks to Stellar.

Opinions are however, Nessy Eater’s own.

Like to know more about Nessy Eater food adventures?

You can follow Nessy Eater on Instagram / Facebook / Twitter or feel free to leave a YUMMY comment 😀

The Emporium Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Cooking with Kylie Kwong – Woolworths

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If you haven’t heard already Kylie Kwong who is an Australian television chef, author, restaurateur and was a guest judge for MasterChef Australia is now plating up her signature Chinese dishes to Woolworths customers. The oh so very new range of Chinese dishes includes Aussie favourites such as Mongolian style beef and stir-fried chicken with cashew nuts and if you LOVE Cantonese style dumplings then there is prawn dumplings with ginger and coriander that’s ready for you to make it yourself at home within minutes.

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Let’s get the party stared.

To celebrate Kylie Kwong’s partnership with Woolworths guests partied hard at Billy Kwong. The purpose of adding a new dedicated section in Woolworths stores is providing delicious Chinese meals in the space of your own kitchen at home. The experience of the meals will be the same fresh flavours you get at a restaurant with added authentic recipe secrets from Pauline Kwong’s unique approach to cooking Cantonese cuisine.

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Such a long LONG LIST for dinner. *Grins*

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Table is set!

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Billy Kwong’s open kitchen

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Started with a few glasses of white and red.

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Guess which object is Kylie Kwong’s instagram image?

Before we started our long-crazzzzzy tasting menu, Kylie tells us her stories of how she started her passion for Cantonese food and it’s all thanks to her mother, Pauline Kwong. Kylie jokingly tells us a story of when she use to attend Epping North Public School and how after school she’d go to her Russian friend’s house to eat their cuisine food and the very next day in exchange Kylie would bring her friends over to eat her mother’s cooking.

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Kylie tells us the history of how her passion started in her mother’s kitchen.

One Chinese classic dish that can grow better and richer over time would be the master stock eggs. Bathed heavily in pork stock you can tell these half sliced golden eggs have been soaked for what it seems to be hours, but really 45 mintues, said Kylie.

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Master Stock Eggs

We move on to the food kit that can be cooked from scratch and that is great value for money is the prawn dumplings with ginger and coriander. This is a great Cantonese style dumpling that combines a filling of seasoned chopped prawns and secret sauce. My mouth kinda fell open a little when this plate arrived looking so awesome. The sauce had an aromatic smell of fresh grated ginger and chopped coriander and it tasted exactly what I  had smelt.

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Prawn Dumplings with Ginger and Coriander 

Next up we deep-fried silken tofu squares with black bean sauce. The superstar ingredient of this dish was of course Kylie’s black bean sauce. This custardlike deep-fried tofu was simultaneously rich, creamy and light and married so well with the powerful taste of the black bean sauce. The sauce was a deeply savoury taste which had a pungent salty flavour.

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Deep-Fried Silken Tofu Squares with Black Bean Sauce

I had a weakness for the seared prawns when there was only one left remaining on the plate. It was crazy insane to see the perfectly tender prawn that’s been sweetly caramelised with honey and ginger sauce disappear and devoured in record time.

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Seared Prawns with Honey and Ginger Sauce

It was lovely guests had the opportunity to meet Pauline Kwong who is Kylie Kwong’s mother. She’s one beautiful lady who knows how to tell jokes. Pauline explains how every Chinese New Year and Christmas she’d be in her own kitchen for hours stir-frying or deep-frying to cater over 50+ relatives.

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Kylie introduces her mother, Pauline Kwong.

This fried rice is overloaded with nutritious vegetables that includes carrot, mushroom, buk choy and tofu. The fried rice is really simple and traditional, however I found it to be a tad soggy, but that didn’t matter because flavour was more important for my tastebuds.
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Vegetable Fried Rice

A popular Chinese stir fry with a spicy edge would be the stir-fried beef with black bean and chilli sauce. This was my least favourite because I can’t handle spicy food as much as I want to but I am trying. But if you enjoy the sharp, pungent and spicy flavours then you go for it because I did feel a punch to the mouth. Besides that wild flame on my tastebuds I really liked that somewhat syrupy flavour of the black bean sauce. I tell you this dish totes goes well with a bowl of plain rice.

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Stir-Fried Beef with Black Bean and Chilli Sauce? 

Something really simple yet I rarely see these days in Asian restaurants is the stir-fried chicken with cashew nuts. I was so easily distracted eating the cashew nuts because of its crunchy texture and the chunks of juicy tender chicken that I had forgotten my bowl of rice. It just shows how this dish can be on its own.

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Stir-Fried Chicken with Cashew Nuts

The stir-fried eggplant with black bean sauce was dangerously tasty. I mean WHOAH that black bean sauce goes so very well with eggplant. The slices of eggplant was evenly covered in the sauce and it contained a sticky outside and as you bite into it it was warm and gooey.

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Stir-Fried Eggplant with Black Bean Sauce

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Action shot of Kylie Kwong in her Billy Kwong kitchen.

It only takes seconds to notice the crispy chicken with sweet and sour sauce. The sauce are a deep red in colour and if you dunk a piece of the chicken into it then it’s going to be a satisfyingly sticky situation.

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Crispy Chicken with Sweet and Sour Sauce

Now Mongolian style beef is something I don’t often cross paths with but I do like the savoury flavours of the soy sauce and sweetness from the hoisin sauce. This dish is another perfect example of having it with a bowl of steamed rice. There’s a lot of bright colourful vegetables in this dish like carrot, red capsicum and spring onion.

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Mongolian Style Beef

Stir-fried chicken with honey and ginger sauce was really mind-blowing with chicken with thick strands of spring onions. And might I add that sauce was pure perfect comfort with rice as well.

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Stir-Fried Chicken with Honey and Ginger

Incredible fragrant of the pork belly soaked in master stock arrived soon after. It was hard to believe nothing was added into this dish for instance any extra spices or sauce because it tasted like it has been marinated for days.

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Master Stock Pork Belly

Even the vegetables in master stock provided the same full flavour. Kylie suggested if you use her ranges especially the master stock, it is best to let the meat, vegetables or egg soak for 30 minutes before cooking.

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Master Stock Vegetables

For our final savoury dish we were introduced with stir-fried mussels with black bean sauce. There was a lot of flavours going on with the fresh mussels and sauce. I was overjoyed for the first time to have black beans and mussels together.

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Stir-Fried Mussels with Black Bean Sauce

Not only was I super happy to meet Kylie Kwong but I also got to meet Lorraine Elliott from Not Quite Nigella. If you don’t know already I am such a FAN GIRL of her blog. Lorraine and I have crossed paths before at Maille High Tea, however I was sooooo nervous to introduce myself to her and plus it would have been freaky to go up to her and say I stalk your blog. Haha. Moving on! Lorriane is an incredibly talented food writer. She tells me her stories about her blog, her husband and how she started Not Quite Nigella. It was truly jaw-dropping to finally have a lonnnng conversation with ONE-OF-A-KIND full time food and travel writer. OH MYYYY GODDDDDD somebody pinch me I really can’t believe we took a selfie together 😀 😀 😀

Not Quite Nigella

Selfie time with the beautiful Lorriane from Not Quite Nigella

Photo credit: Lorriane from Not Quite Nigella

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Guess who’s got her very own personalised chopsticks?!

I had to take a photo with Kylie Kwong just to prove I wasn’t dreaming. But before a happy snap, Kylie was super-excited as she grabs my hand and gives me a personal tour of Billy Kwong’s open kitchen at Potts Point. Kylie is one passionate Chef who revealed her secrets and rewards of hard work. She gave us a glimpse of her family’s Australian-Chinese festivities and taught me how to use her NEW Cantonese cuisine ranges available only at Woolworths. I cannot wait to give these products a go at home. 

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Kylie Kwong with Nessy Eater Girl. 

Disclaimer: Nessy Eater attended Kylie Kwong’s Woolworths tasting menu, thanks to One Green Bean.

Opinions are however, Nessy Eater’s own.

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Bacon All The Rules at Cuckoo Callay Festival

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It must be true love that I am not a vegetarian because of bacon. No one else can break my heart like bacon can. I admit all my problems go away when there’s bacon right in front of me. So if you need a bacon fix maybe it’s time to bacon-ing your way to Cuckoo Callay. For 12 weeks they’ve created something astonishing for Newtown that no café has ever done in Sydney. It’s called BACON FESTIVAL. It’s for real, BACON FESTIVAL exists and you don’t want to go bacon your own heart if you missed out. If you totally HEART BACON like I do, you properly wondered off and I bet you are open to seduction as soon as you see that glossy piece of juicy bacon. I know it’s the sweet smells and varied pinkish colours, but that doesn’t mean you are not in control.

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (1)Pigging it out at Cuckoo Callay

And the Bacon Festival goes like this…

What a Croque of Bacon ($19) that tried to control me with its loooooooooooonnng strips of bacon and basil. Then when I closely looked into the vintage cheddar croquettes I was drunk by its diced pieces of bourbon bacon, pea puree and two poached eggs with that gooey sunrise yolk. If you want to know how to make a bacon lover smile, then this is it my friends. A dusting of breadcrumbs on the croquettes really makes this dish sing. It’s the crispy croquettes center filling that opens new flavours as the effects of bourbon bacon is deeply aromatic.

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (2)What a Croque of Bacon ($19)

What about that sexy long bacon strip? Well…there was a silent treatment at our table, so I’m not too sure what everybody was thinking, but for me, I was so high I didn’t recognise the fire that was burning in people’s eyes when I snatched the larger strip. Obviously full of flavour so that was pretty damn tasty!

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (3)You so fine bacon stripe! And oozy egg yolk inward shot.

Next up I may have ordered Shake ‘n’ Bacon ($9)! Super AMAZING and totally worth building up my calcium intake. Teehee. Can’t go wrong with bacon plus maple syrup, although the sweet syrup was glued at the bottom making a sudden burst of intense sugariness. Overall there’s so much DELICIOUSNESS hidden in this mason jar.

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (4)Shake ‘n’ Bacon ($9)

Can’t go wrong with awesome maple-caramelized bacon, right? I think this bacon milkshake is shouting “drink me!”.

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (5)Bacon sprinkles on me Shake ‘n’ Bacon *SCREAMS*

Rules for a happy relationship with bacon is getting the Bacon All the Rules ($24) dish. This is one engaging plate that is only suitable for happy pigs and inner oinkers to run wild. Every component on this dish is lip smacking and appealing to not share with your partner in crime. We start off with Black Forest Smokehouse maple bacon and bourbon bacon that floated happily atop. Next we dissected that fatty chunk of bacon steak that was really appetising that I had to go for seconds. OH! And whoever came up with bacon sausage is uber insane, yet one hell of a genius. You know you want it before anyone else can get it. It tasted absolutely perfect that there was no flaws about this sausage at all. I loved the bite-size pieces of bacon inside the sausage and saltiness was just right. All that bacon madness is also served with bacon-crumbed poached eggs with sourdough. This is one dish on the menu that you won’t go home hungry or disappointed. If you’re looking for a jam-packed bacon session, then this is it!

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (6)Bacon All the Rules ($24)

Need to wash all that bacon down? Why not give this Bloody Bacon Cuckootail ($14) a go! It’s insanely mixed with tomato juice, tabasco, salt, pepper and a shot of vodka. I was so out of breath when I sipped this cocktail. The level of spiciness is somewhat high for a person who does not often eat much spices. I spy with my eyes I see a strip of bacon and slices of pickles.

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (10)Bloody Bacon Cuckootail ($14)

Only one thing can make a hot dog on a summer afternoon better and that’s if it’s stuffed with maple glazed bacon sausage with gruyere cheese sauce, tomato and quince relish, crackling and dill mustard pickles. Ya I’m describing the Bacon Dawg ($16)!!! I was prepared but I think I didn’t prepare enough for this dawg. The thing about this is it did quite fit together. It was a little overwhelming with the sprinkles of crackle and relish as well as the dill mustard. Totes superior brunch eats.

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (11)Bacon Dawg ($16)

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (13)Smashed that bad boy!

Look what we have here… Don’t Go Bacon My Heart (NOTE: these babes were sample sizes) and OHMYGAWD these are unforgettable. I was incredibly happy when these kids size burger landed on the palm of my hand. The savory beer and tomato chutney, mustard aioli and slaw on brioche added another inch of flavour. Yes not healthy, but I’ve got my game face on! Without a doubt the popcorn chicken and beer candied bacon was noticeable. Hmmm it was the right ratio of chicks and pigs.

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (14)Don’t Go Bacon My Heart

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (15)You know you want this. Teehee.

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (16)Woah! This brioche is stuffed with a lot of meat.

By now I needed granny pants, if possible the XXXL ones. The amount of food coming in one after the other was fit for a King and Queen. So when Bacon, Get in Ma Belly ($20) arrived looking oh so scrumptious I had to do what was right, continue nomming. Lucky I followed my heart because the pork belly with fennel seed sauce with bacon, caper, coriander and lime salad was off the chain insane. Combine with a bowl of white rice would have been lovely. I was nervous when I attacked the slices of candied sweet chilli because between you and me I don’t normally touch chilli, but I did tell Michael from I’m Still Hungry that I will be practising my chilli levels this year. Wish me luck! Anyways back to that chilli…far out it was ADDICTIVE! I had such courage to even pop a few more slices in my mouth. It was seriously hotter than my first date. The one thing which lost some points would be the crackling skin, it was moist. There were signs of crispiness however the texture didn’t meat it. It must be the troubled Asian fusion flavour sauce that drowned the crispy skin crackle. Haha.

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (17)Bacon, Get in Ma Belly ($20)Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (18)That pork. Full Stop.

Here’s a morning breakfast for you to enjoy with your partner yourself; Ya Bacon Me Crazy ($20). This type of love is not rational, it’s 100% physical. Don’t cry if your calories start to sky rocket because every bite is seriously worth it. The caramel and cinnamon ice cream was heavily guarded by three handsome strips of maple bacon that’s drenched in maple syrup and chocolate coated bourbon bacon. Tucked underneath you can see the buttermilk waffles and MORE house-made bacon. Man, I love what you do but you know that you’re toxic, right? 😛

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (19)Ya Bacon Me Crazy ($20)

I told you I wasn’t kidding about the chocolate coated bourbon BACON SOILDERS heavily securing the caramel and cinnamon ice cream. PICTURE PROOF!

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (20)Bacon’s looking streaky, I LIKE! :p

Boy I needed another session of washing down all that tasty bacon, so I opted for Smokey Bourbon Bacon with fresh apple juice ($12). Sadly I couldn’t really taste the bacon, instead the sourness of the apple juice. But that’s cool I needed something refreshing to bring me back to Earth from this CRAZY BACON FEAST.

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (21)Smokey Bourbon Bacon with fresh apple juice ($12)

Introducing Drizzle Sticks (NOTE: sample sizes) that knocks your socks off! *HEAVY BREATHING* Maybe the streaky bourbon bacon drizzled in chocolate and hazelnut thought it could hide from this mama, but I could smell that greasy bacon scent from miles away. Oh bacon you can’t stay away from me, we are meant to be. At first I wasn’t too keen on chocolate + bacon, BUT I’ve learnt not to judge a book by its cover.

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (22)Drizzle Sticks

Picture this no touching, no kissing AND no good loving with bacon will be so cold. Life wouldn’t be the same, I’m telling you. Without bacon fire will burn through your soul. So what’s holding you back to visit the Bacon Festival at Cuckoo Callay?

Bacon Festival_Nessy Eater (23)Oh Yeah!!! Got the BIG piece. 😀

Photos by Vanny Tang

Disclaimer: Nessy Eater attended as a guest thanks to Wasamedia. Opinions are however, Nessy Eater’s own.

Check out my other Cuckoo Callay post I did. Click here and here.

Like to know more about Nessy Eater food adventures?

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