favourite thrift finds

It's no secret that I'm obsessed with thrifting. In fact, it's probably safe to say that I come from a family of well-seasoned thrifters – my grandma is a regular at her local op shop, and forever adding to her already huge collection of clothes! While I don't condone hoarding, there's definitely something addicting about the thrill of finding something you love at a bargain price. Anyway, here are some of my favourite thrift finds I've amassed over the years:





Striped t-shirt: In my eyes, there are only two kinds of people – those who don't wear striped t-shirts, or those collect them by the bucketload. I definitely fall into the latter category... Striped tees are just so easy to throw on, and pretty much go with everything in my closet! This one's oversized and has a sturdy fabric, which is a refreshing change from the super-thin t-shirts I tend to see in the shops nowadays. I'm also loving the navy, which has slowly been taking over my monochrome wardrobe...



Denim jacket: I'll have to be honest, this jacket sat in my closet for a long time after I bought it. It's originally from the men's section and super roomy, but one day it just clicked and I haven't stopped wearing it since! I love that the fit's perfectly oversized, with just the right amount of heaviness to take me through all four seasons.

      

Striped midi skirt: While I usually go for miniskirts, this midi skirt is slowly becoming one of my go-to pieces. The print kind of reminds me of a barber's pole, and since it's monochrome it goes with most of the tops I own already. Oh, and did I mention that it has actual functioning pockets?! I'm not usually fussy, but that was a total dealbreaker for me.



Vintage print dress: I wore this dress in an outfit post awhile ago, but I'm still very much obsessed with it! It's rare that something from the thrift store fits me so well, so I obviously couldn't leave it behind. Even though I rarely wear prints I also thought this one was super cute, and something that will stand the test of time.



Sportscraft wool jacket: To be honest, I could've dedicated a whole post to my love for this jacket. It just may be my favourite item in my whole closet, and to top it all off it was the insane price of $20! Even though I don't tend to wear brown, this coat is so great for making any old outfit look polished. Now I just can't wait for colder days, just so I get the chance to wear it again...

There are sooo many things I could've included on this list, but left out for time's sake! Anyway, is anyone else out there an avid fan of thrifting? If you are, I'm dying to know – what's the best thrift find you've ever come across? Until next time!
Posted by : Mani

sydney snacks iii

For someone who loves eating so much, I'm really bad keeping up with food trends. In fact, while Sydney tends to be a breeding ground for them I've always been the type to visit the same places over and over... hence the idea for Sydney Snacks, a series in which I do mini reviews of the eateries I like to frequent! Most of these won't be new to you if you're following my Instagram, but I thought an update was in order since my last roundup was a while ago. Anyway, onto the food already!

      

Ever since Spice Alley opened just a few steps away from Central Station, I've been obsessed. In case you didn't know, this little slice of Asia is tucked away in a small side street in Chippendale. Its selection includes some amazing Malaysian, Thai, and Chinese vendors, with new additions constantly being added to the mix. My personal pick is the popular char kway tieu from Old Jim Kee, which had me sweating despite my love for all things chilli!
Kopi-Tiam Spice Alley Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato 



      

Out of all the Korean options in the CBD Sydney Madang has to be my go-to place, and I'm sure I wouldn't be the first to say that! It's at the end of an alleyway that's easy to miss, but that doesn't stop the joint from being packed on most nights. Hotpot, savoury pancakes, Korean BBQ, and (my personal favourite) dolsot bibimbap... You name it, they have it and it's guaranteed to be good.
Sydney Madang Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

      

The Choc Pot is the latest to join the line up of dessert cafes in Regent Place, and it's a very welcome addition. There you'll find things like decadent s'more hot chocolates, or fruit shakes if you're after something more cooling (I had the lychee one, which was super refreshing). I've heard their namesake dish is pretty good, but hear me out – this crepe was amazing. The combination of TCP's chocolate spread and crunchy praline nuts totally made my sister and I regret sharing it.
The Choc Pot Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

      

Passionflower is a cute little ice creamery tucked away in Capitol Square, and has been around for as long as I can remember. That's not to say it's lost its charm, though – I mean, where else will you find green tea, black sesame, taro, and Thai milk tea ice cream in the same place? I definitely need to make a return visit and try all the flavours soon!
Passionflower Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
Posted by : Mani

pad see ew recipe

So, remember how I resolved to learn more practical recipes in my last post? This has to be one of the few that I do have under my belt! In fact, if I had anything close to a signature dish it would probably be this – pad see ew, or Thai stir fried noodles. Don't get me wrong, nothing ever beats the glorious wok hei flavour that comes with ordering it in a proper restaurant. However, even if you don't have an industrial stove on hand the homemade version's pretty decent, if I do say so myself! Besides, it's cheap, easy and done in fifteen minutes flat (even less if you have everything prepared ahead of time). What more could you ask for?



Pad see ew recipe:
Ingredients:
½ pack flat wide rice noodles
1 tbs oyster sauce
1 tbs kecap manis
1 tbs dark soy sauce
½ tsp Golden Mountain sauce
½ bunch of Chinese broccoli, chopped
1 cup thinly sliced beef (or other protein)
1 egg
Thinly sliced garlic clove
Canola oil
1. Combine the sauces in a small bowl. In my opinion it should be tangy with just a hint of sweetness, but you can adjust it to your tastes.

2. Heat up the oil in the wok and sauté the garlic until slightly brown at the edges. Then add the beef and cook until the exposed sides of the meat are sealed.

3. Shift the beef to one side of the wok by tilting it, then add more oil and crack in the egg. Using your spatula, scrape the sides of the wok and mix the egg so that it scrambles.

4. Add in the half packet of noodles and the sauce. Toss everything around until the sauce coats all the noodles.

5. Add the Chinese broccoli, and cook for 4-5 minutes or until the greens are wilted. Finally, serve it straight out of the wok!





Some tips you might want to keep in mind:
  • Try not to use the noodles straight after you buy them. I find that they don't absorb the sauces as well when they're fresh, but one or two days in the fridge should fix that.
  • You can use any protein instead of beef, such as pork, chicken or even seafood! Whatever you use, just don't overcook it before adding the noodles or it'll become tough.
  • If you're vegetarian you can always substitute the meat for tofu or veggies like baby corn, carrots, mushrooms, etc. The oyster sauce can also be replaced by light soy, or something similar in taste.

     



Just a fair warning – if you do make this, be prepared to feed a crowd! Cooking a whole packet of noodles (two batches) easily serves my whole family with leftovers to spare. I'm pretty sure they're getting sick of me making it all the time, but hey! I like to cook what I know.

Is anyone else out there a diehard fan of pad see ew? Also, what's your so-called signature dish, if you have one? I think I need all the inspiration I can get to start cooking proper meals. Anyway, until next time!
Posted by : Mani