Fossicking Adventures, Tofu and Coconut Cake

If you ask my family what I always wanted for Christmas and birthdays when I was a kid, they’ll answer in unison: a powerful telescope, a metal detector and a Stable Table.  Well, they ended up buying me one of those three.  In my thirties.  Folks, let me tell you I’m still not doing any stargazing or living out my Indiana Jones fantasies (digging up artefacts, people!).  But I am enjoying tv dinners in stable table style.

A few weekends ago, we had a family lunch at my uncle’s house which is about an hour’s drive out of Melbourne.  Such a beautiful place that backs out on to the State Forest.  Check out their view. Ahhh, Australia!


My uncle got the fires going:



Being the only vegan in the village, and my sister now being vegetarian, we took our own food.  I made two firm tofu recipes from Dreena Burton’s Let Them Eat Vegan: the Cumin Lime Tofu and the Orange Sesame Tofu.  Delicious!  These were cooked up on a flat plate with some zucchini and mushrooms:


We ate our lunch on one of the many picnic tables my aunt set up:


I also took a cake along.  I made Dreena’s Coconut Cake with the Coconut Dream Frosting.  Which wasn’t coconut-dreamy  at all, as I didn’t realise I had zero coconut essence.  And I also dropped in too much almond essence.  So it ended up being coconut cake with more of an almond dream frosting.  Regardless it was still yum and fortunately the people who tried it love marzipan so they said the almond frosting was great:


My brother in law recently bought a metal detector and brought it along.  I was so excited because I am a massive dork that way.  There was a dry creek bed near my uncle’s house, which may have seen some action in the gold rush days.  We started digging when the detector went all beep beep woowooowoooo.  We spent half an hour digging and sifting through small piles of dirt only to come up with absolute crap.  But we did find this, which was kinda fun:


And this was the walk back to the house:


I’m definitely a city girl but I can’t deny that being out there in these surroundings really does good things to one’s spirit  🙂

6 thoughts on “Fossicking Adventures, Tofu and Coconut Cake

    • Yep my uncle has a beautiful place, unfortunately nothing like what we have here in the city. If I could have a property like that, within half an hour train ride from our city then I’d take it!

  1. I spent a childhood finding the idea of living in a city weird – even now I sometimes think it odd we are bringing up sylvia in a city – love seeing the bush photos – I never hankered after a telescope but I think I would have loved a metal detector and I loved visiting my grandparents because they had stable tables and were so cool.

    Do you think coconut cake really needs coconut essence – I want to find a good coconut cake recipe but have never bought coconut essence (or almond essence either) and would like to make it without it.

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