We are nearing the end of a two week holiday on the Sunshine Coast......the end of a great, peaceful, refreshing, quiet time of doing a lot of nothing.
We are lucky enough to have friends that have a great house and pool and who just happened to be holidaying elsewhere, so we have had the opportunity to house sit. For us, that is so much better an option than a "holiday rental" mainly due to the fact that there's a thermomix here!! Ha Ha, seriously though, it's just so much more peaceful and I also thought that it meant that we could eat in or out whenever we felt like it. We've done a bit of both, but more in than out, mainly because I would prefer to spend my money buying really good produce and then having the pleasure of cooking it myself.
We have eaten out a few times and twice we've gone to some pretty swish places, which have had excellent food! Most of the time though, we've just bought top quality ingredients and had fun with that.
We've been eating quite a bit of seafood - the Mooloolaba Fish Market has some of the loveliest seafood and we've discovered Swordfish! It really is a lovely piece of fish - they call them steaks, and they do look a little like tuna. However the flesh is just soft and divine! The only farmed seafood we bought where the oysters, the rest of the seafood was local and wild caught!
We've been to Sunshine Coast Organic Meats at Forest Glen (they stock our pork) and bought a leg of organic lamb - we'll be buying some beef for dinner tomorrow night as we are almost sick of seafood! . Kunara Food store is our favourite place to buy vegetables, dairy and dry goods! There's a fabulous IGA up the road from where we are staying that is tiny but sells lots of gourmet goodies, including Walters Bread. This is fabulous bread that is made locally - sourdough as well as yeasted bread, but the sourdough is proper long fermented bread and is just lovely. Saturday we went to the Kawana Farmers market to get some fresh vegies and to see what else was there.......balsamic vinegar and other vinegars and verjuice made on the Granite Belt, Maleny cheese, a French stall selling baguettes, rabbit rillette and saucison (salami), which became our lunch that day. And turkey from Toowoomba - we bought some turkey sausages to try. There were other meat sellers too, but our favourite one is Kidaman Beef and they weren't there that day. They are our favourite because they sell their own beef (fresh and not frozen) and they have a really great product. They also sell our pork! Home made pickles, pasta, marinated olives.....so much great stuff!!!
One day when we went out for lunch and ate WAY to much!!! I did a simple thermomix tomato soup, which was a great light end to a foodie day! Most lunches we have are comprised of antipasto type stuff with fresh bread and a beer to wash it all down. We bought some lovely salami's made in Brisbane and cheese from further a field from a shop in Maleny! Wow, the choices there are amazing.
It's been a great opportunity for us to take some time out and to see what's happening on the food scene in the big smoke. Not enough grass fed / free range options, but hopefully that will change. I think that there is a change in the air and as a producer, it's exciting to be part of that.