While it’s not quite dumpling weather yet given the lengthy warm, sunny days, I have been eating dumplings at various places including my local favourite Golden Dragon Palace in Templestowe which has consistently good yum cha – I always book the last sitting at 1.30pm so it doesn’t feel as rushed.
My current work colleagues (pictured above) also love dumplings and we regularly visit the Polaris Dumpling Kitchen whenever we feel like a bit of comfort food including last Thursday when we were celebrating a colleague’s birthday. They’re pretty basic and so is the service but if you’re wanting something quick and easy – it’s a good go to place.
If you’re ever on campus at La Trobe University in The Agora you’ll find a great dumpling cafe upstairs (take the external stair case up from the Commonwealth Bank) where they make their own dumplings right in front of you as well as do a fantastic Hainanese chicken rice – great on a colder day. Again, they’re even more basic (order at the counter and take your number with you) but the food is great.
When I left my veganism lecture last Wednesday night, panelists Mo Wyse and Matt Ruby as well as some of their young friends were trying to work out where to go and I overheard ShanDong Mama in Bourke Street being mentioned, who apparently do vegan dumplings. Most Asian restaurants do vegetarian dumplings of some kind but it was the first time I’d heard about somewhere doing vegan ones.
I’ve nearly finalised my lecture topics for the second half year of the Bold Thinking Series keeping in mind the need to appeal to young people so that’s been an interesting exercise and I’m looking forward to locking them in and nabbing some relevant external speakers to complement our academics.
It’s going to be a dog of a year or rather, the Chinese Year of the Brown Earth Dog is pattering in this Friday and given dogs have a reputation for being honest and loyal, as well as trustworthy and reliable – I’m looking forward to the coming 12 months especially as we now have a dog of our own (although not so happy about the hole in my leather couch).
Locally you can celebrate with the Lunar New Year Festival this Friday night from 5.30 – 8.30pm outside WaterMarc in Greensborough. From lion dance troupes to stilt walkers to ribbon and fan dancers to a fortune cookie giveaway – there’ll be lots to see and do.
My favourite yum cha restaurant, Golden Dragon Palace in Templestowe is also holding a number of special Chinese New Year banquet dinners this Thursday and Friday nights with two sittings at 5.30pm and 7.45pm.
Speaking of food, if you’re a fan of CERES and organic fruit, vegetables and other products, you can now order online at ceresfairfood.org.au and pick up from Jen and Olley in Rosanna between 5 and 8pm on Wednesday nights.
CERES Fair Food is an online grocer and carbon neutral food delivery service in Melbourne helping to create healthier, happier and more secure local food systems. It’s also a social enterprise that employs and trains a team of hard-working people who haven’t always had the easiest time finding a job. Certified organic food from local farmers and artisans delivered locally – I call that a win win for us lucky local residents in Rosanna and a big thanks to Jen and Olley for providing this service.
Apparently, this was the full moon we had last week although it doesn’t refer to the colour of the moon as such but a spring flower – the moss pink herb. It’s also the name of a Nick Drake album that Mr Rosanna and I have. I hope you had a happy Easter – it was also Greek and Jewish Easter at the same time so lots of celebrating all round. If you managed to get away over the break, I hope you had a great time.
As for my family, we had a staycation here in Melbourne but enjoyed catching up with both sides of the family for hot cross buns and Easter dinners. It’s taken Mr Rosanna and me a lot of time to set up our boys’ separate bedrooms so for us, there’s been trips to Westfield Doncaster and Ikea Richmond and I daresay we’ll be traipsing out to Freedom Northland at some stage too – it’s been quite a process and we are also still de-cluttering. I’ve started reading Marie Kondo’s ‘The life-changing magic of tidying up‘ and trying to enact some of her suggestions such as starting with getting rid of clothes before moving on to books.
I also bought myself a copy of Zoe Foster Blake’s Amazinger Face not so long ago but have yet to find time to pick it up and read it. At the risk of sounding very vain (!), you can take the girl out of beauty PR but…well, you know the rest. It’s such a small world in Melbourne that I have re–connected with one of my ex-Aveda colleagues Donna as we both now work at La Trobe University. While one part of me will always be interested in beauty on the outside, it’s more important to be beautiful on the inside. In my take on Yves Saint Laurent’s famous words… beauty fades, but intelligence is forever.
While we were at Westfield Doncaster, we managed to co-incide exiting the cinema with the 1.30pm yum cha session at Secret Kitchen and have managed to have brunch there and Golden Dragon Palace in Templestowe in the past fortnight. I always like the 1.30pm sessions if you can hold out that long, as you don’t get kicked out early given it’s the last session of the day. Secret Kitchen has lovely views if you do book although Golden Dragon Palace has the better food. If you’re at all squeamish about live seafood in the fish tanks then Secret Kitchen is also not the place for you. Have a good week – it’s a short one!