Wandering through Southbank with my fiancée and his parents a couple weeks ago we were torn over where to go for lunch.  We decided to try Amicis as the menu looked good and the place was pretty busy compared to the places around it.

The decor at Amicis is conventional, the staff friendly and the food comforting. The was a great family atmosphere. Definitely a place you can got for a relaxed meal with friends and family.

We were seated at an outside table, and although there were a lot of people at the tables around us it was still easy for us to converse. After looking through the menu we decided on the Garlic Bread to start. The Garlic Bread was a good light choice and set the taste buds flowing for the rest of the meal. It wasn't too heavy on the garlic or butter.

For main I had the Soup of the Day. It turned out to be Mushroom Soup. The soup was amazing. It was a great balance of cream, mushrooms and herbs. It came with a few slice of turkish bread and butter. It was a nice light meal, but still filling.

My fiancée had the Chicken Parmigiana. It came with a choice of chips and salad or potato and veges (all the other mains at out table did). The serving was huge. I was a large oval plate with nearly all the surface covered. Definitely value for money. He thoroughly enjoyed the real chicken breast coated in lovely crumbs with a tasty tomato sauce and covered in bubbly cheese.

Future mum-in-law had the Chicken Avocado. It was a moist and delicious chicken breast served with avocado and a hollandaise sauce. She really like the sauce and chicken, although as it was also a large meal she ended up taking some of it home to enjoy later. The salad served with the meals was dressed with a nice whole grain mustard based sauce and was enjoyed by all the table.

Future dad-in-law had the Rump steak with Mushroom sauce. He ordered medium-rare but it came medium-well done. He still enjoyed the meal but was slightly disappointed not to get the steak how he ordered it.

We all really enjoyed our meals and I will definitely go back again. Maybe next time I'll try one of their freshly made pizzas or the Pasta Marinara. In fact now that I'm thinking about it I really want to go back and try their Antipasto plate for two. It comes with cheeses, vegetables, and cold meats with toasted focaccia. Amicis was a great experience and reasonably priced for a nice relaxing time with the family. Amici's on Urbanspoon
Last June, with only a days notice, we found out about the Brisbane Cheese Awards. Lining up on the Sunday morning to enter I was thrilled to see so many people out for a fun day of Cheese tasting, classes on cheese and wine, and plenty of cheese to buy. I was particularly thrilled to see Will Studd from the ABCs Cheese Slices program. As one of my favourite food shows I was so happy to see him and he was very approachable.

Now it is time for the Brisbane Cheese Awards again. This Sunday, 9 September 2012, is Peoples Day down at Portside Hamilton. Will Studd is going to be there again.  I can't wait to enjoy all the oozy, wonderful cheeses. So many local cheesemakers geared up with different cheeses to try. Everything from Haloumi to Feta, Brie to Blues and everything in between.

Standout favourites for me were the Udder Delights Heysen Blue, Locheilan cheese Triple Cream Brie and the 'Raclette' which grills cheese which can then be scraped off and onto bread.

It is $10 for entry and really is a lot of fun. Expect it to be crowded, but it is definitely worth it. Hope to see you all there.

Firstly, I must apologise for lack of blog posts this week. I am one of those people who firmly believes that family always comes first, and this week family has needed to take the front seat.  However, I wanted to bring you some of the inspiring ideas that I have found this week.

I love Heston Blumenthal. A fact that my boyfriend appreciates is only the love built from admiration of pure genius. Heston is one amazing, wonderful person. Everytime of watch one of his programs or read his recipes in  Heston's Feasts I feel immensely humbled. His ideas, the way his mind processes the concepts of flavour, appearance and presentation really inspire me to think about food in a different way. Lately I have watching "How to Cook like Heston". I really appreciate that he is taking the time to show people fantastic ways to prepare and cook everyday food. In fact, I have started to cook  my steak how he suggests. It is simply superb. This week I watched his episode on Chicken and I cannot wait to try some if it. The idea of setting the chicken in a brine in order to help it maintain the moisture content is something I would never have known to explore without him.

Over the last few years my mother and I have made my nieces birthday cakes. These cakes have been anything from a fairy garden to Space to nature inspired.  I am always on the lookout for a new idea for baking and cakes in particular. Just today I found a new blog, Eat Cake for Dinner, and only because of the following cupcakes. I love the idea of creating these wonderful bright and fun cupcakes.  Just take a look. I also really like the look of her Crockpot Hot Fudge Cake and English Toffee.

As everyone who reads my blog can tell I have a massive sweet tooth. And while this can be what initially attracts me to a blog or cookbook.  Recently I have been craving caramel and toffee. I have been experiencing terrible difficulties with toffee. I cannot get it to colour, and it granulates upon setting. I can remember my mothers toffees as a child and this never happened. She would make these wonderful toffees and coconut ices for our school fetes. They were always a huge favourite (along with her piklets). I don't know what I am doing wrong yet but I am determined to find a recipe that I can do. So as I am contemplating the wonderful world of sweets, toffees and caramel I found Eat, Live, Run. I am quickly falling in love with this blog. From the the recipes to the design of her site and her cooking. This site is pure joy. At the moment I am particularly looking forward to try the Salted Caramel Chocolate Mousse. It looks and sounds amazing.

As an Aussie, we do not always have access to all the different cooking programs on television all over the world. This being said I am particularly glad to have stumbled across The Pioneer Woman. Ree Drummond cooks hearty wonderful food with a lot of love. I am really enjoying the way she tells a story with food. I am really interested in trying her Stuffed Mushrooms recipe. This looks and sounds delicious.

So this is it for me this week. I hope you all enjoys these recipes and ideas as much as I do.
Hi everyone. So this week has been really tough personally. I have a very ill relative and I have been unable to complete any blog entries this week. I'll try to get my normal entry up later this afternoon, but my Geek Week will have til another time.
I've had a pretty good week blog wise. I'm trying to be more consistent with my entries and explore more aspects of my Blogs design. Over the next few weeks there will be quite a bit of change as I try to make my blog more attractive and something that really suits me.

So this week I've looked at a local coffee shop, talked about local events in Brisbane, and posted one of my own meals. I'm hoping to look at another couple of cafes and places around Brisbane this week. In fact this week is going to be Geek Week on my Blog, looking at some of the shops and sores around Brisbane that cater to the Geek.

Enough about that. Time to look at the recipes that have inspired me this week.

Firstly we have Arroz Con Pollo from Simply Recipes. This was a really easy dish that was very tasty. I substituted a few of the ingredients (as I always do) and we loved it. In fact my boyfriend said he would have eaten the rice as a meal on its own. This is a huge comment as I've only recently started to introduce vegetarian meals into our diet. I really enjoyed this one. All it involved was a quick sautee of the veges and rice, placing them in an oven proof dish, browning the chicken and placing it on top of the rice. cover the rice with a mixture of stock and tomato sauce or puree. Easy and delicious.

I stumbled across a tumblr site this week called Lovin' Life. With lots of photos of different products this site is full of inspiring ideas. The one I really like the most is the Spa Water. As a drinker of home made ice tea I am always on the look out for ideas on how to flavour water that will increase my likelihood of drinking it. Spa Water is a fantastic idea. Using fruit to infuse the water with flavour and the dispenser makes it a beautiful experience as well as a generally healthy one. I am definitely going to try something at home like this. Just wish I had such a beautiful dispenser to place it in.

 I've been looking for more salad recipes this week, as well as healthy delicious recipes. I came across SkinnyTaste.com. I really like this collection of recipes and photography on the site is an inspiration. I particularly like the look of the Grilled Chicken Spinach Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette. I am going to try something similar this week for dinner. I also like the look of the Black Bean, Avocado , Cucumber and Tomato Salad.  I can see serving along with a good Steak. I think I would probably substitute the black beans for kidney beans (just a personal preference). Overall I really like this site as it provides healthy recipe alternatives.

The last recipe I want to share with you this week is from Stone Soup. This blog has recipes with only 5 ingredients in them. As a fan of Indian Food I really want to give the Butter Chickpeas recipe a go. It is a really quick 10 minute recipe with only 5 ingredients. Stone Soup helps us to understand that tasty food does not need to be complicated and that using good and basic ingredients can be flavoursome and good for us.

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