Thursday, 2 January 2014

Being an Aussie

Growing up in Australia in the sixties was a very special time, and the carefree  memories of my childhood are precious. My most enduring memories are those times spent with extended family when I was growing up. Huge family gatherings on weekends, and on special occasions, such as birthdays and Christmas. We were always outside, in huge grassed back yards, playing cricket, doing cart wheels and playing with cousins. Being carefree kids, we took being Australian and growing up in our lucky country for granted. We didn't celebrate it...it was just how it was and what we knew.

I don't recall being a part of Australia Day celebrations until the eighties when my own children were growing up. The bicentennial of 1988 was the first time we formally celebrated Australia Day. Every year since then we have celebrated with friends somewhere in our beautiful country on Australia Day.
Barbecues, pavlova (See below for recipe!) and  green and gold iced cup cakes are a feature of the day. Always outside, and always celebrated somewhere in this beautiful vast land of ours.

I do love the tropics  but I am yet to spend an Australia Day up there in the summer heat. One summer we will brave the cyclone season and go sailing in our beloved Whitsunday Islands and celebrate Australia Day on the water. We have already organised our winter trip for 2014 and ...yes... I can feel another book coming on!


In the meantime... you can read about my favorite Australian holiday destination in Dangerous Desire.

















What's your favorite way to spend time with your family?
I love cooking pavlova when they come to visit, and we always have pavlova on Australia Day!
The recipe you ask?
Here it is.. with my own secret, special topping!


  • Ingredients 
  • 6  eggs, separated
    1 1/4 cups (270g) caster sugar
    2 tsp cornflour
    1 tsp white vinegar
    1/2 tsp vanilla extract
    300ml thickened cream
    2 tbs icing sugar mixture, sifted

    1. Preheat oven to 120°C. Line an oven tray with foil. Brush with melted butter and dust with cornflour, shaking off excess. Mark a 24cm-diameter circle on foil.
    2. Step 2
      Use an electric mixer to whisk egg whites in a clean dry bowl until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating well after each addition, until meringue is thick and glossy and sugar dissolved. Rub a little meringue between fingers. If still "gritty" with sugar, continue to whisk until sugar dissolves. Add cornflour, vinegar and vanilla and whisk until just combined. Spoon meringue onto the foil, using the marked circle as a guide. Smooth sides and top of pavlova. Use a small spatula to forms little peaks around edge of pavlova. Bake in oven for 11/2 hours or until pavlova is dry to the touch. Turn off oven. Leave pavlova in oven with the door ajar to cool completely. When completely cold, transfer to serving plate or store in an airtight container until required.
    3. Step 3
      Use an electric mixer to whisk the cream and icing sugar in a medium bowl until firm peaks form. Spoon cream onto the top of pavlova and then...Annie's special topping...
    4. Sprinkle with Tia Maria Liqueur and grated chocolate-covered honeycomb
    5. Step 4                  Enjoy!
Comment below to win a copy of The Romance Abroad Bundle...my three Affairs books in one bundle.

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January 1 Monique McDonnell
January 2 Sara Hantz
January 3 Annie Seaton
January 4 Imogene Nix
January 5 Caitlyn Nicholas  
January 6 Tima Maria Lacoba
January 7 Nicole Flockton
January 8 Wendy L. Curtis



January 10 Susan Horsnell
January 11 Susanne Bellamy
January 12 J'aimee Brooker
January 13 Victoria Purman
January 14 Ann B Harrison
January 15 Cate Ellink
 and
 Demelza Carlton
January 16 Jenny Schwartz
January 17 Donna Gallagher
January 18 Lily Malone
January 19 Tea Cooper
January 20 Fiona McArthur
January 21 Max Henry
January 22 Jennie Jones
January 23 Alison Stuart
January 24 Eve Rabi
January 25 Kendall Talbot
January 26 Annie Seaton-Prize draw

19 comments:

  1. That's very similar to my pavlova recipe but I don't used cornflour and use more sugar. I double it for Christmas and other family functions.

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  2. Hi Annie

    I have a recipe for a 2 egg pavlova that my family love but we top ours with fresh fruit although I think I am going to try your toping next time I make it :-)
    Our family celebrations sound very much like yours and I was in Sydney in 1988 with our 4 kids what a day to remembhave fun
    Helen

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  3. That recipe sounds so good. Thanks for sharing

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  4. Oooh! This looks delicious and it's gluten-free too! I'll have to try it! TU!

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  5. Love Pavlova!
    We have a family BBQ every Sunday night. You need a very good excuse not to attend ;)
    Cheers,

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  6. I've never had pavlova so I googled it. :) Not only does it sound wonderful, look great, but it has a bit of history, being named after the Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova. Gotta try it now! :)

    We love having a meal with our kids where we can relax and talk about anything... :)

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  7. Thanks for the recipe, would you like some snow, we have extra?

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  8. THANKS FOR THE GIVEAWAY AND HAPPY NEW YEAR! SHELLEY S. calicolady60@hotmail.com

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  9. Loved reading about your Australia Day, Annie. Great recipe.

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  10. Thanks for the giveaway and sharing. Happy New year. I don't think I ever had Pavlova it looks yummy but don't think it's on the diet.

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  11. I've never had Pavlova; it looks yummy!

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  12. I grew up in N.S.W, it was great.

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  13. Australia day is great! Not only are there cool activities to do, we can enjoy doing them since we don't have to be at work.

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  14. Love your recipe, thanks for sharing. We always seem to meeting at agreed destinations where there are plenty of activites for the children.

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  15. Waiting on your next book, Annie!

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  16. ok what is 1 1/4 cups (270g) caster sugar? Granulated sugar? Sounds really good. I might have to try and make it!

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  17. Sounds delicious! Thanks for the gveaway!

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  18. I've never made pavlova so thank you for the recipe.
    bituin76 at hotmail dot com

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