I've just realised I have a whole week's backlog worth of photos/things to blog about since last weekend. Where do I start??? If I could I would combine in all into one super duper long blog entry but really... I can't do that... it'll be overload. The ideal would be to start from last Sunday and work my way through chronologically, but I don't really want to do that. So I will start with what I did on my day off work on Friday.
Our first stop for the day was The Essential Ingredient at Rozelle. Since this place had moved to Rozelle from Chatswood I kept driving past but never been in. As we were a little early for brunch/lunch I thought we could kill two birds with one stone and pop by for a visit seeing as it's only across the road from our lunch destination. Upon stepping through the entrance I could tell this was a foodie's haven. All the latest gadgets and appliances, cooking utensils, gourmet foods, cake decorating supplies, cook books, even Ryan was pretty happy to be there. I swear I would be happy if this place was my home. I was just in awe and inspired by everything there. If I could afford it I'd buy everything in the whole shop! But then I would have the problem of where to store everything so living there sounds justifiable =D. They even had their own cafe and while I was browsing Ryan spotted some organic cola they were selling and just had to try some. It was good. To try and describe it the taste would be similar to LA Ice. I prefer this taste over Coke.
At about 11:40 we headed across the road to La Grande Bouffe where we wanted to have brunch. We'd been here twice before for dinner and it's become a little favourite of ours for when we want to eat something special. Having had read their breakfast and lunch menus I was curious and wanted to visit again during the day. According to their website breakfast was served until 10:30 and Lunch was served from 12. As we had arrived in between they were still only taking orders from the breakfast menu and upon looking at both bthe menus we decided to wait the 15 minutes until we could order from the lunch menu.
While waiting for 12 we ordered some toasted brioche with butter and jam. It was a fairly buttery bread, tasted like a cross between white bread and buttery pastry. The jam was top quality stuff and was absolutely delicious spread over the butter on the toast.
Ryan decided to have the "Cassoulet of Corn fed Chicken Maryland". The meat was very tender, the skin was absolutely crispy, just the way I like it! Reminded me of the Vietnamese crispy skinned chicken I always tend to order when we eat out. It was served on a bed of beans and some chunks of pancetta. Ryan commented that it would have been better served on a cooler/colder day. He wasn't expecting this to come out when ordering it. And it did turn out to be a very very warm day. He enjoyed it none the less and was even nice enough to give me a few nibbles of it here and there.
I have been craving a good baguette for a while now and was pulled towards the baguettes on offer on the menu. All the salads sounded quite interesting too. I ended up chosing the "Duck Confit Baguette with Cornichon". The duck was tender and moreish and the little pickles added a nice contrast. I really enjoyed my baguette.
After our lunch we made our way back to The Essential Ingredient so that I could pick up a few things seeing as our conversation during lunch on what we wanted to do for the rest of the day was sounding like we wouldn't really be coming back past this way. I picked up small bar of Belgium chocolate which we had to eat straight away because my car was scorching hot by the time we hopped back into it. It was a quite smooth chocolate, not too sweet, and contained small pieces of cocoa beans (from Ghana) mixed through which I found quite enjoyable.
I also picked up some other goodies consisting of a packet of Roses de Reims biscuits, a small tub of rose buds and a box of Rocher Noisette, hazelnut biscuits. The Roses de Reims remind me of the sponge lady finger biscuits. The rose buds end up on the top of some rosewater cupcakes I make the next day.