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TRY THIS: Cupcake Espresso

Posted by admin on 22/07/2019
Posted in 南京桑拿网 

Cupcake Espresso. Picture by Jonathan CarrollTime for quick bite, sweets
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Address: Shop 2, 38 Bolton Street, Newcastle

Open: 8am to 5pm, Monday to Friday, and 10am to 2pm Saturdays

Phone: 49291990

Website: cupcakeespresso南京夜网.au

Owned by: Adriana Daley

ROW upon row of colourful cupcakes captivate customers who enter Cupcake Espresso, so much so that the cafe’s savoury menu is often overlooked.

Lunch is on the menu at Cupcake Espresso, in the form of wraps and pasta – tailor-made for workers on the run.

There are at least 16 different cupcake flavours on offer at any given time, with 15 permanent flavour options and others making surprise appearances.

The shop’s owners are hoping to open another Cupcake Espresso on Tudor Street, Hamilton early next month.

Wraps and sandwiches (all $7.90): New York rare roast beef, caramelised onion, baby spinach and aioli on olive and rosemary sourdough or wrap; chicken caesar wrap; roasted turkey breast, cranberry, Tasmanian brie and baby spinach on soy and linseed sourdough; roasted turkey breast, cranberry, Tasmanian brie and baby spinach wrap; chicken breast, shortcut bacon, avocado and aioli on olive and rosemary sourdough; chicken breast, shortcut bacon, avocado and aioli wrap; chicken breast, basil pesto mayonaise, sundried tomato and baby spinach on olive and rosemary sourdough.

Pastas (all $8.90): vegetable lasagne; spinach and ricotta cannelloni; beef tortellini in boscaiola sauce; ricotta ravioli in mushroom, sun-dried tomato pesto and cream sauce; chicken half moon in tomato and cream sauce.

Cupcakes: Banana; blueberry; white chocolate (GF); strawberries and cream (GF); chocolate orange (GF); apple pie; banana toffee; pineapple and coconut; triple chocolate; vanilla bean; salted caramel; raspberry white chocolate; peppermint chocolate; hazelnut chocolate; Turkish delight; lemon meringue; lemon; peanut butter; chocolate; cherry ripe (GF).

Macarons: Chocolate; raspberry cream; passionfruit; strawberry; chocolate mint; salted caramel; coconut rough; vanilla bean; hazelnut.

The magic of fresh pasta is well within reach

Posted by admin on 22/07/2019
Posted in 南京桑拿网 

KNEAD TO KNOW: Reporter Nathalie Craig and Mark Hankinson learn the basics of pasta-making at Sandalyns vineyard in the Hunter Valley.WHEN she was five years old, Luciana Sampogna’s nonna told her ‘‘Lucia, here in Emilia, if you do not know how to make pasta when you turn eight you will not find a husband’’. And perhaps her nonna was right: in Sampogna’s book she reveals that it was her ‘‘pici’’ pasta – made by rolling dough made from flour and water between the thumb and index finger – that won over the heart of her husband.
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Now pasta is a big part of Italian-born Luciana Sampogna’s life: she runs the Sydney-based cooking school Cucina Italiana and is author of the cookbook Light of Lucia: A celebration of Italian life, love & food.

As with many Italian women, some of her earliest memories rest with the age-old wisdom of her nonna unlocking the secrets of making the best fresh pasta.

While pasta is, unromantically, simply the Italian word for paste or dough, this basic ingredient is loved throughout the world.

Pasta has great versatility: it’s made in an abundance of shapes, sizes and textures and it marries perfectly with vegetables, herbs, cheeses, meats and seafood.

It can be transformed into one of the fastest meals – dried pasta placed in boiling water takes barely 10 minutes to cook – yet there’s something deeply enticing about the idea of home-made pasta.

Some may have tried making fresh pasta with varying degrees of success and failure.

My own first attempt resulted in dough that was pale, flimsy and full of holes, the pasta itself barely edible.

There’s no denying that there’s an art to it, but is it all that hard once you get the hang of it?

‘‘Like most things in life, it’s easy once you know how,’’ said chef Caiman Rea, who runs a Tuscan-style pasta course at Sandalyns vineyard in the Hunter Valley.

Mario D’Intino, from Newcastle, who grew up in the Abruzzo region in Italy and regularly makes pasta, agrees.

‘‘The first time it’s hard but then it becomes easier each time,’’ he said.

Pasta-making has become a ritual for D’Intino since his retirement. He even dons a chef hat each time he makes it.

‘‘Pasta is a hallmark for every occasion in our family,’’ said his granddaughter, Erin Cummings.

The secret to making successful fresh pasta seems to rest in the adage ‘‘practice makes perfect’’, but what are the best ingredients to use? There’s no simple answer as Italian cooking differs from region to region.

Sampogna explains in her book that in the Emilia-Romagna region, of which Bologna is capital, pasta has only two ingredients, egg and flour, yet further north in the region of Piedmont they may add white wine to the dough, while in Tuscany they add olive oil.

In Rea’s classes, he uses semolina and duck egg but tells his students that 00 flour and chook eggs can be used in place of these ingredients.

D’Intino believes any sort of plain flour will do and that an egg should be added for each person. ‘‘I don’t measure my flour, I just see how much flour the eggs will take,’’ he said.

Rea also measures by feel but says if looking for an approximate measurement, around 100 grams of flour to one egg is about right. This amount may vary slightly, depending on the humidity in the air and the size of the egg. Ingredients can be mixed together by hand on a clean bench or in a bowl. One universal truth is that the right texture of the dough is crucial. But what should it feel like? ‘‘You learn the feeling,’’ explains D’Intino.

Rea tells his students to aim for a texture similar to that of playdough.

Pasta-making requires patience, particularly in the process of kneading the dough.

‘‘If you do not knead it properly, you cannot develop the gluten … which gives it elasticity, and therefore no matter how long you cook the pasta, it will remain hard,’’ advises Sampogna’s nonna.

It’s important to keep your hands dry during the process to avoid sticky dough. This can be done by sprinkling your hands with flour.

Sampogna kneads her dough for about six to 10 minutes, advising not to work it for much longer or the pasta will be too soft. The dough should be rested for 30 to 60 minutes to let the gluten settle. Next it’s time for the smooth, well-worked dough to be broken into two balls and flattened by hand. The pasta machine should then be turned to the widest setting, then each slab of dough put through the machine, shaping it almost the same width as the rollers.

Let the dough run through on this setting three or four times, resting it on the back of your wrist as it rolls out of the machine.

The dough can be run through until it reaches the smallest setting on your machine although some types of pasta, such as fettuccine, work well with slightly thicker dough.

‘‘The thickness of the pasta, that’s just a personal preference. Some people like it very thin and others like it a bit more gutsy,’’ Rea said. Once you have made it this far and still have intact pasta sheets, there’s a good chance you will have a tasty finished product.

‘‘Once you know how to make the slab of pasta, you can then make all types,’’ D’Intino said.

Pasta machines often have fettuccine and spaghetti settings and other varieties can be crafted by hand or with stamps and cutters.

After allowing your pasta to dry for about half an hour it’s time to put it in a pot of boiling water and wait until it floats to the top; this should only take a few minutes.

The result should be silky, fresh egg pasta. If not, don’t give up, it will come with practice. ‘‘After growing up eating Nonna’s pasta, I’m a pasta snob. Nothing beats home-made pasta,’’ Cummings said.

There’s something magic about well-made, fresh pasta.

As Sampogna’s nonna says: ‘‘Good pasta can take you many places. It can win hearts too’’.

See today’s Good Taste for some delicious pasta recipes.

Life after children

Posted by admin on 22/07/2019
Posted in 南京桑拿网 

Almost 30 years ago my wife and I decided to go camping at the end of each year to create a family tradition, and we have done just that. But this year something was different and it took us a while to work it out.
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The holiday seemed a bit empty, a bit pointless, and after a few days we realised that it was the first camping holiday without children. Well, without dependent children – our 16-year-old son was with us but he didn’t need to be entertained or even supervised by us, with the result that for the first time we weren’t building our day around children. We didn’t rise to meet the needs of children, we didn’t need to do things to keep them occupied and entertained, we weren’t keeping track of children, watching out for them, dealing with the spats and crises and outbreaks that dot a family day. And, I suppose, we weren’t meeting the parents of other children.

Every year we’ve traipsed loaded with towels, bags and surf paraphernalia to the beach and a couple of hours later we’ve dragged ourselves back over the hot dunes to the camp, but not this year. Indeed, we didn’t go to the beach once!

Yes, camping seemed to be a bit pointless. Is this life after children?

Of course life will change when children leave the home, and in our case four of the five have left already. That has been a gradual change, made the less stark by occasional extended returns, whereas the holidaying change seemed sudden.

The big changes at home have been the elimination of noise, the huge reduction in time spent ferrying children about, and the subsiding of the bustle and busyness that fills a house of children. More time, I suppose, for parents, who hope one day to be grandparents, but time to do what? How have you handled, or will you handle, the change in your life when children fly the coop?

Former Jolly Roger Hotel marked for demolition

Posted by admin on 22/07/2019
Posted in 南京桑拿网 

DEMOLITION: Nightlife no longer.ONCE an icon of the city’s nightlife, now one of Newcastle’s worst eyesores, the former Jolly Roger Hotel has been formally marked for demolition.
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Newcastle City Council has advised owners it intends to serve a demolition order for the buildings at the old Jolly Roger site, which includes the former Hunter Village shopping arcade stretching between King and Hunter streets.

The site is approved for a retirement complex, including a 17-storey tower, but the group behind the proposal revised its plans late last year.

Hunter King Developments wants to convert the site in the heart of the Civic precinct into a 265-unit residential complex.

In June last year, Chris Chapman from Hunter King Developments said the site could be cleared and construction could begin by the end of 2011 if the project was supported by the council.

Mr Chapman said yesterday he was still waiting on approval from the council, which he hoped would come within the next three to four weeks.

‘‘I’ve got a firm quote to demolish the site and fence it,’’ Mr Chapman said.

‘‘We can be on site bowling it over within eight weeks of getting the DA approval.’’

Since closing, the hotel has become one of Newcastle’s ugliest and most maligned sites.

The council said it had received and investigated a number of complaints about the condition of buildings at the Jolly Roger site since October 2007.

The site has been used as a haven for squatters, boarded up several times, and is a magnet for vandals and arson attacks.

‘‘The condition of the buildings has deteriorated significantly over this time as a result of continuing vandalism, including arson, and from the partial demolition of the building,’’ a council spokeswoman said.

Newcastle’s billion-dollar building boom

Posted by admin on 22/07/2019
Posted in 南京桑拿网 

The former Star HotelNEWCASTLE’S billion-dollar building boom is showing new signs of life, but developers and governments continue to stall on more than a dozen CBD projects that would revitalise some of the city’s most embarrassing sites.
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A Newcastle Herald investigation has found at least 16 key CBD sites sitting idle despite being approved or earmarked for redevelopment.

The owners of three of those sites have flagged or lodged new development plans in recent months.

The latest application tabled with Newcastle City Council aims to transform the former Tattersalls Club and Surf City nightclub site on Watt Street into a $24.6 million nine-storey unit complex.

A council decision on plans for a 265-unit development at the former Jolly Roger Hotel and Hunter Village Arcade site is expected next month.

Developer Keith Stronach revealed last week he would invest up to $100 million to redevelop the remaining sections of the former Royal Newcastle Hospital site.

But while pockets of the city are moving forward, elsewhere plans have been left on the shelf.

They include the Legacy House site in Bolton Street, which developer Jeff McCloy has listed for sale.

The Legacy House site has approval for apartments, commercial space and car parking.

Mr McCloy said yesterday he was still looking at options for the site, but said conditions in the city were not conducive to investment.

‘‘I’m not sure what to do with [the Legacy House site] yet,’’ Mr McCloy said.

‘‘We’re waiting on some other progress [in the city] with GPT and the rail line.

‘‘If you talk to commercial builders there’s not much work in the town.’’

Other shelved developments include the now-derelict Star Hotel, which has approval for 12 storeys but has been listed for sale, on and off, since 2006.

Receivers for businessman Con Constantine have also put on the market a massive ‘‘gateway development’’ site in Newcastle West, including the former S&W Miller warehouse and Newcastle Region Museum.

The NSW Government has not announced any plans for the Empire Hotel site, a year after the old building was demolished, and a decision on the former Post Office building is eagerly awaited.

One possible reason for the stalled progress of many projects is uncertainty surrounding mine subsidence that would prevent large-scale development on some city sites.

Long-awaited subsidence maps showing potential development sites are expected to be released in the coming months.

Hunter Business Chamber chief executive Kristen Keegan said people would not invest in uncertain conditions. ‘‘In terms of the Newcastle CBD it’s all about creating the right investment climate,’’ Ms Keegan said.

She said barriers to investment included concerns about mine subsidence, planning regulations and the rail line.

Developer Chris Chapman, who is behind the Jolly Roger plans and the recently completed Grand Central Apartments, told the Newcastle Herald last month that residential plans were viable because there was growing demand in the CBD for affordable unit accommodation.

The development application for the Tattersalls Club site shows plans for 56 units and ground floor commercial space.

The site has an approved development application, but owner Chrysalis Holdings has asked for an additional floor.

‘‘The proposed development will respond sympathetically to the desired future city fabric and rather than fragmenting Newcastle’s character, it will provide a benchmark for future redevelopment in this part of Watt Street,’’ the application said.