Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Picnictimes with slices at Araluen Botanic Park

It’s Spring time which means the blossoms are blooming.

Email exchanges seeking the best place to see blossoms in Perth lead to picnictimes at the Araluen Botanic Park on Saturday.

With the grand final on and the start of the Royal Show, we figured we would have the whole place to ourselves….we were wrong, there were quite a few people around but we found that everyone else left really early after lunch while we stayed on till closing time.

How to have an awesome picnic

  • Bring a picnic basket

  • Bring something to sit on
Like a checked picnic blanket, a blanket with a family of tigers on it or a ridiculously big blue tarp.
  • Bring food
Antipasto, bread, salad, slice, salad, cheese and crackers.

  • Bring some bubbly
What’s with bubbly attracting flies?

  • Bring games
…hacky sack
  • Make friends with the local residents

  • Being at one with nature
  • Let boys be boys
(the boys decided it would be fun to shake all the flowers off this tree)

  • Delegate the food duties
I put up my hand to do sweets and made some slices which I thought would be a nice picnic treat.

Apricot and Coconut Slice

250g plain sweet biscuits, crushed (I used Digestive biscuits)
1 ½ cup chopped dried apricots
1 cup desiccated coconut
395g can sweetened condensed milk
100g butter, chopped
200g white chocolate
2 tablespoons butter

Line ~23x23cm slice pan with greaseproof paper.

In large bowl, combine biscuit crumbs, apricots and coconut.

Combine condensed milk and butter in saucepan and stir over low heat until smooth. Pour over dry ingredients and mix well.

Press mixture firmly into pan, refrigerate for about 30 minutes or until set.

For the topping, melt white chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl over a small saucepan of simmering water until smooth. Spread the white chocolate over the slice base and refrigerate until firm.

(This recipe was adapted from a Women’s Weekly cookbook. Adapted means that I added more quantities of the apricot and coconut. I think that next time I make this I will include some crushed walnut or macadamias)

Raspberry Oatmeal Slice

½ cup (113 grams) unsalted butter, softened/room temperature
1 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 ¼ cups plain flour
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
2 cups wholemeal rolled oats, divided
1 cup raspberry jam or preserves (homemade or store bought)

Preheat oven to 175C. Line ~23x23cm slice pan with greaseproof paper.

Beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla extract and beat until incorporated. In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Add to the butter mixture and mix until well combined. Stir in 1 ¾ cups of the rolled oats.
Press 2/3 of the dough into the bottom of the prepared pan.

Spread the raspberry jam (preserves) over the oatmeal base. To the remaining dough add the remaining ¼ cup of rolled oats. Crumble this mixture evenly over the top of the raspberry jam. Bake for about 25 - 30 minutes or until nicely browned. Cool and then cut into squares.

(Recipe from Joy of Baking)

Gifts from New York

My friends A and M just came back from a holiday in New York and bought us back all souvenirs. They wanted to buy us all I Love NY tshirts but it would have added to much to their luggage count and I doubt we would all wear the tshirts out at the same time (it would either be really weird or totally awesome). Instead A and M bought us all I Love NY pencils! And some novelty gum, with each pack specifically chosen for each person.

I'm a political nut so I was given the politically themed gum box

My friend N loves cats so she was given the cat inspired gum box (!)

I discovered that you can never take enough photos of flowers.


  1. That's my friend getting married, I think she had the same idea about the park being quiet on that day too!

  2. I was surprised that someone would get married on grand final day. Their friends must not be big footy fans but it doesn't matter now since the game was a draw!