Harvest Mylor Cafe

Hello,

recently I was on going for a country drive through Mylor and stumbled upon the Harvest Mylor Café. Tucked underneath some majestic oak trees, this charming cottage has been transformed into a vibrant modern café, whilst retaining it’s rustic charm. The outdoor dining area is a lovely cosy set up; with wooden tables and chairs accompanied by inviting colourful crocheted blankets, to keep toasty on those chilly mornings. Such a lovely location in a leafy and peaceful setting, certainly a way to experience the slower-paced lifestyle up here in the Adelaide Hills.

The menu is full of healthy wholefood options, ticking most dietary boxes. Harvest emphases their use of locally sourced seasonal produce, mostly made fresh in house. One of the things you will notice when exploring local cafes in the Adelaide Hills is the frequent warm personal service, Harvest is certainly true to this.

When we arrived late morning, my daughter already had a little breakfast at home earlier but was slightly peckish. We were served by Danielle who went out of her way to chat to my little one, suggesting to make her a custom mini egg and bacon slider to satisfy her little craving, at a smaller cost than the larger one on the menu. She kindly also made her a babyccino on the house which was not expected but a lovely gesture of her warm hospitality.

I ordered the buckwheat waffles topped with Harris smoked salmon, a softly poached egg, creamy hollandaise, dressed in a generous amount of sprouts and garnishes. It was delicious, nourishing and plated well, providing a lovely harmony of textures. My husband ordered the breakfast Brioche bun filled with fried eggs, crispy bacon, greens and served with a house made spiced relish …. and he certainly enjoyed every mouthful of this comforting breakfast, particularly the relish! We also enjoyed a coffee with our breakfast and I must say it is worth the trip up just for their amazing espresso, their crème was perfect. They also had an additional sweet waffle menu (not pictured) that will certainly satisfy those with a sweet tooth with several decadent options.

A trip to Harvest Mylor Café is a perfect way to start your weekend if you are keen on a little country exploring, and a great alternative stop on your annual pilgrimage to Hahndorf this Autumn (Mylor is only 10 min away). Visiting Mylor also offers the opportunity to check out the local Strawberry Farm ‘Walker Family Farms’ or go for a hike on part of the Heysen trail. Harvest Mylor Café is located on the main road of town, with plenty of parking next to the café and across the road at the main oval.

Harvest Mylor Café

240 Strathalbyn Road, Mylor

Opening hours: Thursday to Sunday 8:30am – 3:30pm

 

I hope you enjoy some lovely adventures in the hills this Autumn.

Have a lovely day,

Jacqueline

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Zesty Lemon and Lime Curd

Hello,

Recently I have been quite keen to make some homemade preserves, as there are many times during the year where we find a temporary oversupply of delicious fruit and vegetables. Making my own condiments with local produce has been a little dream since the beginning of our whole tree change adventure, a rite of passage for the country life! The funny thing is I have returned home many times with large quantities of strawberries, plums and tomatoes, intending to preserve them. However, they have always magically turned into cakes or soups!

I had a few lemon and limes remaining from a cocktail night, so today I would like to share with you how I turned them into the most delicious and zesty Lemon and Lime Curd. What I love about citrus curd is the harmony between sweetness, sourness and creaminess of the egg and butter. I have refined this recipe a few times to find the right balance between zesty citrus and that lingering creaminess.

This Lemon and Lime Curd can be used as a spread on toast, pancakes, pavlova and tart filling. I find it most ideal as an accompaniment with light and buttery scones topped with a dollop of cream.

Lemon and Lime Curd

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What you will need:

3 eggs

2 egg yolks

170g caster sugar

Juice and Zest from 2 lemons

Juice from 4 limes

150g salted butter (chopped)

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Directions:

  1. Separate egg yolks, finely grate lemon zest and extract juice  from the lemons and limes.
  2. Whisk together the eggs, the two yolks and sugar until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is well combined.
  3. Add the juice and zest and further combine.DSC_6133
  4. Place a double boiler or a bowl over a post of simmering water. Ensure the base of the top pot or bowl is not touching the simmering water.
  5. Add the egg and lemon mixture and cook using low to medium heat, stirring continuously for 10-15 min or until thickened.DSC_6135
  6. Add the chopped butter individually and whisking the mixture in between further additions.DSC_6134
  7. When thick and glossy turn off the heat and cover to cool aside.DSC_6138
  8. Serve when slightly cooled or store in a sterilised jar and refrigerate.
  9. Test the lemon curd regularly with a little spoon when no one is watching, just to check if still delicious!

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I hope you enjoy this recipe and have some fun making your own zesty curd preserve. Please note that I forgot to label the jar with ‘lime’, the featured curd is made from this recipe!

Smacznego and have a bright and zesty day,

Jacqueline

 

 

A local treasure: The Stirling Hotel

Hello,

One of the great things about moving to the Adelaide Hills is discovering all the great food haunts; be it quaint little cafes, trendy hotels or classy vineyard restaurants. I will be sharing with you the worthy mentions, starting with the award-winning treasure of Stirling: The Stirling Hotel.

The Stirling Hotel is a beautiful and trendy venue, nestled at the end of the main strip in Stirling (Mt Barker Road). It’s charming ambience draws in crowds all year round. However since Spring has arrived visitors have been flocking here to enjoy their modern menu, whilst basking in the sunny weather we have had lately.

I have dined here several times; for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and the service and food has been consistently exceptional. Their bistro menu caters to the traditionals, with some classy pub grub, to more modern experimental tastes with their tapas and signature burger menu. The multi-complex hotel caters to all moods, with a restaurant, a bistro, a pizza bar and a unique licensed patisserie that is located at the rear within the cellars (offering a wine or coffee with your fresh croissant!).

Breakfast has been my favourite time to venture here, to avoid the city crowds coming up during the day and evening. One of the highlights of breakfast is the pancake station that allows you to indulge in unlimited pancakes for $7.90, but get in early to avoid queuing up. My children love this and it is their usual breakfast choice when we come here. Recently I was here with them and we sat outside along the bench with the beautiful view of the main street all greened up on a sunny Saturday morning. I ordered the avocado and haloumi on sourdough dressed with dukkah and vincotto that gave it a lovely texture, it was delicious. For families, the deck area is ideal as it faces a lovely garden and lawn area where kids can run off their energy whilst waiting for their meals to arrive (yet remaining in full sight). I’m yet to experience the bar at night however I have taken note of their interesting cocktail menu, and inviting Sunday sessions on the deck (during my evening walks around town).

Visiting Stirling in Spring also offers the opportunity the wander around town which is right now in full bloom. The magnificent oak and druids provide lush green canopies and colourful bursts of floral hues are on display all throughout the town. A walk down the lovely leafy archway on Druid Avenue is definitely a must this time of year.

The Stirling Hotel is a great spot to mark on the “To Do List” this Spring and a great idea for those who wish to impress visitors or a new date. You can find it at: 52 Mount Barker Road, Stirling.

Hope you have a lovely day,

Jacqueline

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Our New Life in Stirling

Hello,

After much anticipation and planning, we have finally made it across from Perth to our new home in the beautiful town of Stirling, in the Adelaide Hills. We have been living here for nearly two weeks and our experience so far has been nothing short of magical.

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The absolute abundance of nature everywhere is so breathtaking! Everywhere you look the sky is filled with layers of various types of pine trees, luscious green ivy wrapping itself around anything in its path, beautiful bursts of remaining red Maple leaves, and the prettiest soft petals of pink and red Camelia’s sparkling with raindrops. While some trees including Elm and Oak are bare in the current winter season, their trunks are covered in the greenest moss and fit in beautifully with the evergreen trees.

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Growing up, I was always surrounded by gum trees so the experience of seeing bare trees is quite lovely as an Australian. Also quite distinct for Stirling, are the never ending Agapanthus plants lined up right onto the boundary of streets and roads. I cannot wait to see them flowering their beautiful blue blooms in Summer.

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Adelaidians who make the annual Autumn pilgrimage to Stirling and Hahndorf, would be really impressed by the sensory wonderland Winter has to offer here in Stirling. Taking the scenic route off of the main street is certainly worth it. I have made it a habit to take the longest way back home down some enchanting residential streets, after an errand or school drop off (even getting lost with low fuel this week! 😂).

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Our garden has been so exciting to explore. Our children especially love navigating around the rugged pine forest below our house, and the winding path towards the gardening beds at the top of our property. There is frequent drizzle of rain here, and while we have been lucky so far to escape the heavy showers (usually occurring in the evening), we have been surprised by how much time our children are spending in the garden. Some days, afterschool, they play outside until sunset and happily rug up and explore in their gumboots with their umbrella in hand!

Walking around our garden, my lungs are constantly filled with such lovely crisp fresh air with the occasional waft of comforting wood fires escaping chimneys that surround us. Gentle sounds of birds singing, rain water trickling into our creek, with bursts of majestic kookaburra calls; often draw me to pause and take in all that surrounds me.

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At the bottom of our property we have a winding creek that also runs through our neighbours’ properties, and it’s quite full at the moment after the recent rain. The cascading trees on the creek’s bank reminds me of that scene from one of my favourite movies “The hundred foot journey” where the two chefs form their friendship and love over their picnic by the river bank.

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Mark and I have enjoyed making countless plans for garden projects that we can’t wait to get stuck into and share with you here. For now, it’s been so wonderful just to enjoy and explore our new home amongst the great unpacking task we are yet to complete! Stay tuned for some more of our adventures in the coming weeks.

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Have a lovely weekend,

Jacqueline

Our Tree Change

Hello,

After 10 years of adventures living all around Australia, my husband Mark and I decided it was time to plant some roots so our children can grow in a place that is truly home.  After living in Darwin, Sydney, Adelaide and Perth, we made the decision to return to my home town in Adelaide, and we craved a more nature-based lifestyle. 

I still recall the afternoon I was standing in our backyard with Mark, in our current home in Perth, and he said “Wouldn’t it be nice to own a tree? A nice big leafy tree? Wouldn’t that be amazing!”

Mark grew up in a semi-country lifestyle in Nabiac in the central coast of NSW with various animals and 16 acres of land to explore and grow up in. I had quite the suburban life, but my parents owned a little shack at Swan Reach on the River Murray. I spent the best days of my childhood exploring the river, lake and riding my bicycle around in the luxury of freedom and nature. Over the years that we have been together, Mark and I have tried our best to maintain our involvement in nature, and we grew plants and vegetables where there was room. My solution to our lack of space in our apartment living in Sydney, was to grow my own hanging geraniums over our balcony. This has become a real therapeutic hobby for me, tending to my geraniums can lift any sort of mood I have (especially when people stop their car to take photos!).

We have realised how important nature is for the emotional, spiritual and intellectual development of our children. We long for a home where our children can explore, make a mess, climb trees, create, discover, experiment and have plenty of fun outdoors! We also believe in the importance of our children learning the skills of growing their own food and environmental sustainability, for our continual use in generations to come.

Since becoming a mummy to my wonderful son and daughter, I have felt a desire to preserve my genetic roots.  I aspire to uphold the culture, traditions and values of my Polish heritage and my husband’s German/ Polish heritage for our children. I have always been besotted by the stories of Poland my grandparents often spoke of, as a child. My polish heart adores the heart warming traditional Polish food I grew up with, and the mouth-watering Polish cakes filled with summer fruits, poppy seeds, cream and farmhouse white cheese.

Being Polish in Australia is a culture of its own. Ever since I can remember, my family made at least one annual pilgrimage to the beautiful Mt Crawford Forest in South Australia. These trips to the forest always stir much nostalgia and comfort from the motherland they all miss. The majestic pine trees and golden forest floor scattered with pine needles and pinecones, are always cherished. A day in the forest always included a hearty bonfire, with the tradition of roasting a juicy Kransky pierced onto a stick over the ember flames. In autumn it is a rite of passage for young children and their parents to learn the skill of mushroom picking from the elders in the family. This is an important skill as the wrong kind of mushroom can have terrible if not dangerous consequences! I have always loved forests and living all over Australia, I have always searched for a similar experience in the state national parks. Nonetheless, none could pull my heart strings like  Mt Crawford and the Adelaide Hills could!

We were so happy when we found our beautiful new home in Stirling… and our tree! Stirling is a pretty town in the Adelaide Hills, filled with majestic oak and pine trees and the experience of all four seasons, giving it a very european feel. I’m so happy that we have our own mini forest of pine trees at the bottom of our property, and some lovely terraced gardening beds to grow our own food and flowers, especially strawberries! Growing and eating fresh strawberries evokes fond memories of my Aunty Dorothy’s (Ciocia Dorota’s) garden as a child many lazy summers ago. Strawberries are one the most popular fruits in Polish baking and I hope to share with you some lovely Polish cakes I plan to bake with strawberries grown in my garden.

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Our new tree change adventure will begin at the end of July 2015 when we finally move from Perth back to my hometown in Adelaide. This blog will include our garden adventures, sharing some of my favourite recipes, our experiences exploring the treasures of the Adelaide Hills, and the discovery of my Polish heritage woven into these areas. I look forward to sharing our new adventure with you in our new wonderland…

Jacqueline