Creamy Salmon Pasta

In this post I mentioned that I had tried a delicious Salmon pasta at a restaurant in Darwin and wanted to give it a try and on Saturday night I gave it a go.

I’m not too confident on following recipes as I worry I will get them wrong or it won’t taste very nice because I’ve never tried it before. I also tend to use lots of pre-packaged mixes like pasta sauce rather than try to create it myself as we don’t really have a way of storing the ingredients you would need and it would be too expensive to keep buying them every time.

I started off by following this recipe or at least that is the one I found online standing in Woolworths trying to work out what ingredients I would need. When I looked a bit more I liked the look of this recipe as well so this dish is a bit of a combination of the two!

The ingredients for 3 people are:

Pasta of your choice – enough for the number of people who will be eating the dish
500g of smoked salmon – I used the pre packed sliced version but the salmon fillets would work and probably be a bit better as they would be more flaky
300ml of thickened cream
A spoonful of garlic paste
A couple of tablespoons of lemon juice – but add to taste
A handful of chives
Half a chopped red pepper (capsicum)
Half a chopped green pepper (capsicum)
Half a chopped medium sized onion
A handful of mushrooms roughly copped.

Salmon Pasta Ingredients

The Method:
I cooked the pasta and whilst it was cooking chopped up the peppers, mushrooms, onion and salmon into smaller pieces. Then when it was cooked I used the olive oil spray to cook the peppers mushrooms and onion altogether in the frying pan until softened.

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Then I added the pasta which had been drained back in to the pan and cooked it for a minute with the vegetables before adding all of the cream and cooking for a further minute making sure all of the ingredients were cooked in the cream.

Next I added the garlic paste, lemon juice and chives in to the mixture and cooked for a further minute.

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Finally I turned the heat off and in the salmon leaving it to cook for about a minute before serving it up.

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The final result was good, it wasn’t like the version I had tried during the week but I think that was because I had added lemon to the dish and I am definitely not a chef. It was tasty and full of flavour which was good as I worried it would taste a bit bland. I might experiment a bit and leave out the lemon next time but we quite enjoyed it and there are left overs which will definitely be eat up over the next few days!

Grateful Heart Monday Part Two

The Grateful Heart Monday event is run by Emily of Ember Grey and today I wanted to post about how grateful that I am that my family and friends both in the UK and Australia have taken the time to help us with this damn visa application (it gets called various insults these days as it’s taking so long to get everything together).

Whilst we float along on a bubble of, maybe we’ll be ready next week and then another week passes they have been writing statutory declarations about me and us as a couple to help support our application. As I have mentioned before we have to prove we have been in a serious relation for more than 12 months and that we are a genuine couple so these statutory declarations are so so helpful.

I can imagine how hard it must be to write them as well, when doing so and having my application accepted, means I will be staying in Australia beyond August this year but they have done it and written such lovely things I have felt extremely touched.

So I am grateful for their help and also want to say thank you as it means the world to me.

Ember Grey

Ice Cream Days

It seems like it’s been a busy week but we haven’t done too much really and now we have a whole weekend with no plans which is pretty nice as we haven’t been home on the weekend for probably a month or longer. I’ve bought the food we will need for dinner so don’t really even need to go out unless it gets too hot and I feel the need for some air conditioning which is always a possibility.

Between working which has been hectic for both of us it’s been a dinner and ice cream sort of week though which is always fun (but expensive).

Somehow we ended up going out for dinner a few times. Monday night might have been due to my comment that I can’t be bothered to cook tonight and the Aussie claims he cannot cook, but I blame the 4am start for that one as we drop the Aussie’s brother off at the airport on a Monday morning for 6am so by the time I finish work all I want is to sleep sometimes. The rest of the week, not my fault!

We went to a restaurant in Palmerston on Monday called the Hogs Breath Cafe and the food in there is always pretty good with amazing steaks, it’s on the must visit list when my family gets here.

On Tuesday we went to a really nice Italian restaurant called Salvatores Cafe in Darwin City. I like it here because the Chef always comes out to check the food is good and will talk to you about how he cooks it or how much he loves creating the food. We’ve been here before and I learnt then to order an entree portion of pasta as the main course is huge! I had a gorgeous salmon pasta and I am going to have a go at re-making it this weekend for us. The Aussie had a very nice looking steak as well.

They also have really good looking desserts but we popped to an ice cream shop around the corner called Trampoline Gelato, I had a passion fruit and Eton mess tub which was very very good. I can highly recommend this shop!

Trampoline Ice Cream

Thursday we had to pick the Aussie’s brother up from the airport at 8:30 so headed to Stokes Hill Wharf which has great views of the city and out to sea as well as a good selection of shop/stalls where you can buy dinner. There are usually pretty good fish and chips available there which we opted for and of course we had some ice cream after, purely to fill the time before we had to go to the airport of course.

View from Stokes Hill Wharf Darwin
View from Stokes Hill Whard

Finally on Friday I had dinner with a couple of friends at a restaurant called Nirvana whilst the Aussie went for a drink at our favourite Friday night spot, Dinah Beach. I’ve never been to Nirvana before and we decided to choose 3 different dishes (butter chicken, Malaysian sauteed beef and Thai Beef Mussaman so we could all have a bit of each and it was such a delicious meal. I didn’t take any photos as the food was too nice and the chatting non stop.

They also had live music during dinner which was good although we were chatting so much we forgot to clap a lot!

We decided that it would be a good idea to FaceTime my Mum at dinner so my friends could meet her. Unfortunately she wasn’t available so we called my brother as well which was funny and he owes us a drink now I think! I am really looking forward to everyone meeting when my family arrive in 29 days!

Literary Junkies: May 2014

Well this is my first month participating in the Literary Junkies event but I saw a post about it by Megan on Semi Charmed Kind of Life which seemed perfect for me as I work my way through my ever growing list of books on my iPad.

They also have suggested reading and you can join the discussion on Twitter each month to discuss the books if you join in. I probably won’t do that for now as I am trying to complete the Summer Reading challenge but it’s a perfect way to meet other bloggers and discover new books.

Here are my answers for May! I’m hoping I manage to remember to join in next month as well as it was fun answering the questions.

1. What are you currently reading? Tell us about it!

I literally finished reading A Long Way Down by Nick Hornby this evening between cooking dinner. The book starts on the roof of a building in London which has been nicknamed “Toppers” because people have jumped from the roof before. We meet the four characters of the book here on New Years Eve, Maureen, Martin, Jess and JJ and all have gone with the intention of jumping. The book then tells their stories and why they have reached that point and also how this odd ball bunch of strangers become connected.

I have started a book called The Hundred Year Old Man Who Climbed out of the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson and quite looking forward to seeing what this story has in store for me.

2. Do you judge a book by its cover? What cover elements make you not want to pick up a book?

I think so, if the cover grabs your attention and the title is really interesting sounding I definitely want to know more. I think a dull cover or one that doesn’t really work with the title would put me off a book, although I would probably still read the back just in case!

3. Do you participate in any other bookish link-ups? Tell us about them so we can join next time!
I am trying to participate in the Summer 2014 Reading Challenge that Megan of Semi-Charmed Kind of Life is running. I’m up to 35 points so far and book 3 from my list so I’m pretty hopeful to get through them all.

I am also doing the Goodreads reading challenge for 2014 which isn’t a link up but you set yourself a challenge of how many books you’ll read this year and then use the website/app to keep track. I’ve challenged myself to 45 and am upto 15 so it’s not looking hopeful!

4. Have you ever watched a movie that was better than its book version? Explain yourself!
Aaaah I am notorious for thinking that the book is better than the film! I hate when things get changed so it’s not like the book at all (Beautiful Creatures is an example and I was so so disappointed as I loved the book). I think maybe the Monuments Men might be better than the book as I loved the film but cannot get in to the book!

5. Summer is here! Do you read more often during any particular season?
I think I probably read the same amount all year around because I work full time so enjoy reading in my down time. If I’m on holiday though I would read more than normal and plan of having a stack of books to get through on my flights to and from the UK later this year.

6. What is the worst book you’ve read this year? Why?
Well I read all 3 books in the series, mainly because I wanted to know what the heck was going on but The Game trilogy by Anders de la Motte is probably my least favourite book(s) so far this year. It’s all very conspiracy theory which I don’t mind but it was very very far fetched and also seemed to be an attempt at mimicking the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo which I loved so was disappointing.

Pink Heels Pink Truck

Visit from a Green Tree Frog

So this afternoon I decided I was going to “pop” into the city (aka drive 70+ km’s) as I wanted to look for some gifts to send to one of my blog link up partners.

I popped in the shower, got out wrapped my hair up in a towel, shook my other towel to make sure there were no bugs or spiders in it and got dry. Then I walked through the house, had a chat with the Aussie and then looked for something to wear. I sit down on the bed looked to the right, spot the green tree frog sat on my shoulder. Yep sat there like it’s the most normal thing in the world.

I of course screamed and knocked him or her off my shoulder before remembering that I actually like green tree frogs a lot (except when they pee on you – yep one did that when I was trying to take a photo once) and that if he stayed in the house he’d die because of the lack of water.

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I tracked him down eventually and the Aussie rescued him and put him back on the shower rail outside where he sat there looking a bit shaken which is not surprising given his ordeal and let me take some pictures.

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I love his expression in this photo, it’s very you just screamed at me and threw me on the ground, I appreciate the rescue and all that but do you have to take photos!?!

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Fun for all the Family!

After a morning take photos of Calisthenics with my camera club me and the Aussie headed off to the Fred’s Pass Rural Show. You might remember that in this post I mentioned dropping of some photos for a photo competition they were having so we had to pop down and take a look.

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The whole event was really good fun and we met up with some of my friends and their families which was lovely. There were all sorts of animals which were very cute and some had some very funny names. I also loved that my reaction was on occasion much like a young child with lots of awww look its a baby goat etc!

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We had a wander round and met some of the animals (I heard someone say there were puppies there but I couldn’t find them – or the Aussie led me away from them!) and also got to see the “pimp my ute event” though I think I made up that name as well as some wood chopping competitions. I think that whilst looking at my sunburn I almost bid on a wooden owl that had been carved with a chainsaw, so also learnt don’t move during an auction unless you actually want to buy something.

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It had rides for kids and adults, though they were very pricey and from the ride my friends went on, lasted about a minute so not worth it at all!

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The food there was great and there was so much to choose from so we sampled a few different things that were available and delicious.

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The day was topped of with some live music from Shiane Hawke was is from the Northern Territory and was apparently on X Factor, Dave Garnham & the Reasons to Live and Ian Moss who is from Cold Chisel!

I really enjoyed Dave Garnham and was so annoyed my phone battery ran out during a cool demonstration by Mick’s Whips as I would have liked to take some photos and videos.

Here is a Youtube video I found showing how good Dave Garnham and the Reasons to Live are.

The finale was Ian Moss and he was amazing. I had never heard of him or Cold Chisel and the Aussie told me he would only go if he sang Tucker’s Daughter which seems to be his most famous song! He did that song as the final song and then came back and did an encore which was even better than the first half. He was really very good and at the end we went and met him whilst he signed CD’s for us. He was lovely although seemed to think I sounded Scottish rather than having an English accent so not sure what’s happening with my accent as a few people have been confused about where I come from!

Here is a video of Ian Moss singing Tucker’s Daughter as well from Youtube!

Oh and I found out that one of the photos I entered into the photo competition came First!

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I was very pleased when I found this out!!!

Photo Competition

This is the photo that won 🙂

The Bridge