Melbourne wasn't happy this week, and when Melbourne's not happy it usually pays to protect yourself from the elements by bunkering down inside and curling up with a few of life's creature comforts.
When it comes to comfort food there's nothing quite like a bowl of steaming hot soup, and it's all the more enjoyable when you've managed to roast the chicken to make the stock to make the soup. While it's often hard to find the time, once you've experienced the difference you'll know the importance of stock and understand that, while this nourishing bowl of farro lentil soup with harissa mightn't look like much, the taste really is something else.
After soup, meatballs would have to be pretty high on the comfort list, and you'll always get the best texture if you make your own breadcrumbs.
Spicy meatballs with coriander and sour cherries was certainly a curious combination, but one which worked surprisingly well, particularly when accompanied by some soft, buttery polenta and a few winter greens.
The miserable weather also provided an excuse to spend some time with another of my new obsessions, and one of the prettiest books I have ever seen.
While I've not yet had the pleasure of visiting Bourke Street, their book is a baker's dream, and if you're looking to make things from scratch it's hard to go past spiced fruit sourdough using your very own starter. Admittedly mine's been a little neglected of late (I like to think I'm letting it mature), but that doesn't mean it's not capable of producing some of the best bread I've ever made.
And while we're talking best, I have to say that their carrot cake is the epitome of ethereal goodness, and am prepared to commit all manner of food blogging faux pas by saying that the batter was truly luxurious, the crumb simply perfect, and the cake itself one of the most delicious to ever grace the benches of kitchen TPB.
Not a bad end to the weekend, really...