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Chocolate Almond Tree

Toblerone and Roasted Almonds, mmmmmmm…

Some years ago, before we had children and had a lot more time to spend creating ridiculously time-consuming dinners at home, we used to host an annual ‘festive season’ dinner. I would spend days and days choosing my turkey, debating stuffing versus no stuffing, scouring magazines for the best plum pudding recipe (and found it!), trying out various Christmas cakes and researching the perfect mince pie.

And all the while, searching for a decorative edible non-Christmassy Christmas tree.

I had seen a picture in a magazine of a chocolate tree and I was besotted with the idea – a textured chocolate to resemble bark, and nuts to hold it all together. That was it!!

You can make the tree a couple of weeks ahead, just cover it with foil and store it in the fridge. I have tried it with peanuts instead of almonds (great, except for the allergy factor) and chocolate crackle mixture (great, until it was put on the table in the Sydney summer heat and proceeded to fall apart before our eyes).

Be patient when making it. It is much easier when the chocolate is at room temperature. And make sure you allow enough time for each branch layer to set firmly in the fridge before assembling.

Let’s Lunch (#LetsLunch) is a twitter-based virtual lunch club where anyone interested can join this monthly ‘lunch date’. A topic is posted at the beginning of the month, everyone now takes it in turns, and all posts are made on the same day by this random but lovely group of food bloggers, writers and people who just love cooking from all around the world. Anyone can join at any time – just join us on twitter by searching and adding the hashtag #LetsLunch. Check out the others’ posts – they are wonderful!

Lisa’s Chocolate Almond Tree on Monday Morning Cooking Club

Grace’s Spiced Shortbread Cookies at Hapa Mama Grace

Anne Marie’s Ornament Sandwiches on Sandwich Surprise

Betty Ann’s Mini Bibingka on Asian in America

Lucy’s Peppermint Candy Tray at A Cook and Her Books

Pat’s Lemongrass and Pandan Sugar Cookies at The Asian Grandmother’s Cookbook

Tammy’s Chewy Gingerbread Cookies at Insatiable Munchies

Vivian’s Festive Gingerbread Cookies at Vivian Pei

Linda’s Merry Kale Trees at Free Range Cookies

Annabelle’s Pecan Caramels at Glass of Fancy

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Chargrilled Sourdough, Tomato and Haloumi Salad

A Luscious and Healthy Salad, Full of Goodness

We are celebrating the season of (Northern Hemisphere) Spring as well as Daffodil Day in the U.S.A, supporting cancer awareness. In Australia we celebrate Daffodil Day  in October, our Spring.

It’s a time of hope, when we join together to help fight cancer by raising funds and increasing awareness. It’s a time to educate everyone across each country, to ensure that each and every person affected has the best care and support possible, and then to beat this thing once and for all.
We can all support this endeavour wherever we live, whatever we do and whichever season we are in!

At home, we try to nourish ourselves and our families with wonderful food. We  choose organic vegetables rich in colour and antioxidants, the best extra virgin olive oil we can find, and ingredients from sources we trust. And then simply put it all together with a good dose of love, the essential ingredient.

When I think of Spring, I think of bright, vibrant food that awakens the palate and the soul. This salad is a mouthwatering feast for all senses, full of colour, texture and immense flavour.

We’ve made a short video to go with this recipe – one minute only!




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