Saturday, December 10, 2011

Melbourne trip 2011 Part One & Banana Oat Pancakes

Melbourne, capital of the state of Victoria in Australia. One of the places that I have eyed on for awhile to visit. My family and I finally made a trip there and it was a wonderful experience and a nice get away indeed! Mid November's weather is like Spring to Summer season, so the temperature was really nice too! In our stay, we got to experience both the colorful city life in Melbourne as well as some quiet stay in the nearby seaside cities which is only a couple hours drive away. However I realize  I didn't really capture many nice pictures this time....perhaps I was too busy taking care of my kids, lol! Anyway, bare with me and hope you will still enjoy viewing them. ;)
Flinders Street Station is the central railway station of the suburban railway network of Melbourne.
(GPO) General Post Office Clock Tower, one of the prominent buildings in the CBD area.
One of the highlight in Melbourne is a visit to their famous Queen Victoria Market.
An abundance of fruits all over the market. Not only that, it sells all sorts of stuff over there too! I even heaved back a 10 inch pie dish, 4 ramekins & a 24cm cast iron roasting dish! Why? Because it was so cheap...the cast iron roasting dish only cost me AUS$24.90! Ok ok, will show you all once I cook up something with them. After I returned to the hotel then I realised that I've forgotten to take pictures of the store. It's located in the far end corner of the market. Haiz...gotten too excited about my purchases!
A showcase of Artisan breads there. Looks good isn't it, but I didn't get any since I decided to eat this instead....

How good does this look?! I realize that Aussies love their bacon and ham...I have at least one serving of bacon or ham every other day...:P Yum!

It wouldn't be right if you don't get to see a real koala when you are in Australia. In fact that is basically what my kids wanted to see most of the time while we were there. (*_*)"
It took me so long to get this shot. Some koalas simply just shy away from the cameras and it seems ages before they move an inch. :P
Since this trip was a visit to a koala conservation center, the animals are always at a safe distance from the visitors. So seeing them through my camera lens is as"close" as it gets. :P
Look at this cuddly cute baby koala bear! It's sleeping so comfortably in it's mummy's arms. (^_^)
I'm sure anyone that had been to Phillip Island before knows about the "No photography" rule on the penguins when they do their "penguin march" back to their young on land. But we were so lucky that we spotted one baby penguin the day after! Good thing it was bright day light, so no flash was used, heehee!
The Nobbies, one of the most breathtaking spots we visited.
Caught my little one gazing out into the blue ocean. Wonder what she is thinking...
These eye catching and colorful boat sheds are at the lovely beach in Mornington, a small seaside town. I love how quiet this place is, there are only a handful of people at the beaches there on a weekend afternoon. And those 3 are my husband and kids!
We are practically the only people there. (^_^) Finding such a nice, clean, quiet beach is like finding a treasure...I love it!
We even found small starfishes near the beach sides! No worries, no sea creatures were harmed in the "making" of this post, hehehe..
On our ferry ride from Mornington to Sorrento, Queenscliff, we actually saw dolphins swimming along side the ferry! It's too bad I didn't have my camera with me. (-_-) Sorrento is yet another small quiet town with many gracious old buildings, definitely a nice place to get away from the hussle and bussle of city life.
We stop at this really nice place call The Pear Cafe for lunch. Love the ambiance there. 
Warm toasty bread with steak ham and juicy tomatoes plus gooey mozzarella....a simple and satisfying lunch.
Best of all, with a cup of Mocha. Frankly speaking, I'm not a coffee person, but this cup of Mocha is super yum! It's creamy rich, fragrant and chocolaty (yes, chocolaty). Hmmmmm!

Before I keep going on with more photos of my trip, I think I should save it for my next time. Else this post will be super long! More photos will be posted next time with scenes from the Great Ocean Drive! So stay tune!
What's a food blog without any food?! So here it is; I want to share with you all a simple, delicious and healthy breakfast that you can easily whip up for you family; Banana Oat Pancakes.
I got this recipe from the special edition of "The Australian Women's Weekly Christmas Entertaining 2011" magazine. I usually love to buy the local food magazines whenever I go traveling, and Women's Weekly is definitely one of the good ones to get.
These pancakes are so so good! You would think that oats will make the pancakes heavy, but no, oh no, they are light and creamy, almost melt in your mouth! Really! I was a little worried my kids will shy away from them because of the oats, but luckily, they each had 4 pancakes...doubled what they usually have. ;) I did slight modification to the recipe, here is my version:

Ingredients for Banana Oat Pancakes: (serves 4 adults)
375ml fresh milk
80g unsalted butter, cut small
100g quick cook oats (original calls for 140g)
60g plain all purpose flour (original calls for 50g)
40g brown sugar (original calls for 1 tbsp)
1.5 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
pinch of cinnamon
2 egg,s separated
1 tbsp cater sugar
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
3 small bananas, about 150g (original calls for 340g)
cooking oil or butter
butter, maple syrup and fresh fruits to serve together
  • Combine the milk and butter in a small saucepan over medium heat until the butter melts and bubbles appear around the edge. Remove from heat and stir in the oats. Set aside for 10 minutes.
  • Sift flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and cinnamon into a medium bowl. Whisk egg yolks and vanilla extract into oats mixture; add flour mixture and stir until just combines.
  • Mash bananas; fold into the pancake batter. Beat the egg whites with 1 tbsp of caster sugar till stiff peaks, then fold into the oat mixture until just combined.
  • Heat a large non-stick frying pan over medium heat; spray with cooking oil to grease. Drop 1/4 cups (60ml) of the batter onto the pan; cook for 2 minutes each side or until cooked through and browned both sides. Remove pancakes from pan; cover to keep warm. Repeat with remaining batter. Serve while still warm.
I love oats, so these pancakes are perfect for people like me. :) I'm not exactly a health freak, but if you are...better still, you'll love it! It's that nutty, creamy taste from cooked oats that's just so good! You gotta try this out and you will know what I mean. And I am very sure these pancakes will be on my breakfast plate very often from now on. :)

Okay, hope I didn't bore you all with my super long post! Have a good weekend all and stay tune to my next post. ;) Cheers!


Awayofmind Bakery Hoiuse said...

nice photos and love the pancake too :) thanks for sharing!

Elin said...

Bee Bee , thanks for sharing such nice pics of your trip to Melbourne :) and the oat pancakes looks good...thanks for sharing the recipe :)

鲸鱼蓝蓝蓝 said...


ICook4Fun said...

Very nice pictures Bee Bee. I was there in 1996 and I remember going to the market and watching the penguin march at night. Can't remember much of other places ha ha.. I hope to go there again someday. Actually my family is visiting there now. Should be home in two days :) Love the light fluffy pancakes.

WendyinKK said...

Sounds like so much fun... my kids are so small now, dunno when can I go on holidays, real holidays.
Oats are actually very nice when used in bakes, not dense at all, but gives bakes a fluffy moist texture. Your pancakes look delish! and that cube of butter, oh yumz. LOL

lena said...

i'll see if i hv time to visit victoria market the next trip when i'm there. The last time when i was in aust, not really interested in cooking then so i know i missed out lots of things selling in victoria market...yes, and also their magazines!

Edith said...

In Australia, I love Melbourne the most. Nice place and nice pple as well.

Enjoy your hols.

Love that pancake. Going to try it soon.

Meatloaf said...

Awesome pics! Just love your blog :)

Passionate About Baking said...

Wow! These are good memories! Queen Victoria market is really nice. Looks like you had a great trip! Makes me miss the place...

Banana oat pancakes look very healthy and yummy!

Unknown said...

好想去哦。。可是孩子还小 :(

Jo said...

Hi BB, great pics and reminds me of my trip in April. I love your photos of Vic Market. Unfortunately I went on a Easter weekend and the place was super-super pack. Didn't have a chance to walk around much due to the crowds.

Zoe said...

Oh! You came to Melbourne! I'm glad that your family and you enjoy your Melbourne trip.

Not forgetting...your pancakes look awesome!

Sonia ~ Nasi Lemak Lover said...

Thanks for sharing, these information is useful for me as I also planning to visit this place in Mar next year, can't wait to go Victoria market, hehehe ..

Anonymous said...


nice photos and nice pancakes! would like to ask, r the quick cooking oats same as those instant ones? thks

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Hi octapusmum, yes you can use instant oats too, no problem, but not rolled oats.

Anonymous said...

thks! am going to print the recipe out and once i have oats, will try it! octopusmum