Finally we entered the last month of winter in Sydney, and while it remained delightfully sunny for the better part of the past few weeks, it has been freezing by Sydney standards, especially overnight, hovering around 6-7°C most nights, even on the coastline.
August of course tends to be the coldest and wettest month in Sydney, so it is perfect for staying indoors, cooking for, or with, friends, visiting art galleries, and hanging out at cocktail bars and restaurants.
Many Sydney-siders also head north, to winter in Europe, and take advantage of the European summer, or towards Broome, in Western Australia, with its highly agreeable summer weather this time of the year.
For those left behind to endure the cold, this month’s cocktail is a Lychee Martini in celebration of impending spring.
25ml Paraiso Lychee liquor*
Method: Mix ingredients with ice in a cocktail shaker, shake vigorously, and serve in a martini glass. For pizzazz, decorate with a slice of apple.
* Use Paraiso Lychee liquor for its delicious, natural taste.
** Still prefer Absolut for that clean, fresh taste.
While you are enjoying your Lychee Martini, here are a few of my favourite tunes I am currently listening to …
‘The Man’ by The Killers
The Killers is an American rock band out of Las Vegas, fronted by singer Brandon Flowers. Flowers is a prominent and devoted Mormon, but we shall overlook this arguable shortcoming in favour of the excellent music The Killers have been producing for years.
Their highly anticipated new album ‘Wonderful Wonderful’ was released at the end of June, and ‘The Man’ is their first single off the new record.
‘The Man’ sees Flowers strutting his stuff as ‘the man,’ flexing his rugged muscles in a tight white singlet but crashing to earth, performing on stage but turning out a devastatingly awkward performance, looking devastatingly handsome in a tuxedo as a young, successful entrepreneur but alienating people around him, and strutting around in a cowboy hat while crapping out at a gaming table.
The video brings to life a series of over-confident male stereotypes lost in the chase for fame and their self-defeating egos, all crashing and burning, but the song itself is upbeat and funky, and perfect for a boogie, or a late night cocktail, and the video is both sexy and engaging.
‘Boyfriend’ by The Goon Sax
The Goon Sax is an indie pop group from Brisbane, Australia. Their debut album ‘Up to Anything’ was released last year to critical acclaim.
‘Boyfriend’ is the most adorable post-adolescence guitar pop single in which a young man dreams of having a boyfriend …
And if I had a boyfriend
I’d treat him so right
And if I had a boyfriend
I’d love him all night
‘People of the Red Sunset’ by B-Town Warriors
The B-Town Warriors are a group of young indigenous people from the remote Western NSW country town of Bourke. They written, recorded, and filmed ‘People of the Red Sunset’ over a 5-day period in April 2016.
The song is the result of a community project designed to encourage a dialogue-based storytelling process enabling young people to analyse ‘the real’, ‘the ideal’, and ‘the bridge,’ that is to critically think about how to create positive change for themselves, for each other, and for their communities.
The song is a celebration or culture, resilience, survival, and pride in a town that for a long time had been known as the most dangerous place in NSW, before it turned its image around.
‘The Silver Spoon’
If you prefer a literary journey with your Lychee Martini, this month my choice is an Italian culinary journey, ‘The Silver Spoon‘. As I noted above, August in Sydney is the perfect month weather-wise for staying indoors and discovering your inner master chef.
The Silver Spoon, also known as the bible of Italian cooking, has just released a brand new edition with 400 new photographs illustrating deliciousness.
The book is culinary journey of unparalleled proportions with 2,000 mouth-watering authentic recipes from across Italy.
The book will introduce you to the traditions of Italian cooking, from Italian culinary terms, such as antipasti, battuto, cacciatore, giudia, napoletana, semifreddo, and more, the tools and equipment you will need to create your Italian feast, and of course stunning recipes from sauces, marinades and flavoured butters to antipasti, appetisers, pizza, a delicious variety of first dishes, egg dishes and frittatas, vegetable dishes, delicious meals with fish, crustaceans, shellfish, meat, offal, chicken, and game, cheeses and desserts, and complete menus for festive occasions such as Easter and Christmas.
The book won’t just provide you with the recipes and handy hints on how to prepare the meals, but also general information related to food, from a handy guide to cooking seafood, to cuts of meat.
Even if you are not into cooking this amazing books makes for a great read (provided you are not reading it on an empty stomach) and it is certainly the perfect gift for a gourmet friend who loves spending time in the kitchen.