V&Tree Magazine is Digitally Published!
Remember this piece of work? Last summer I printed for my final major project, the first and probably only V&Tree Magazine. Alan and I planned to extend the issue after graduation and then distributed it at expos, but that never happened because we got picked up for work at Devilfish. OF course then we did our final show in October 2013 and called it quits until we finished our current life’s work, the graphic novel project.
But I got an email recently, from people trying to offer collaborative work, in trade for no payment, which I find frankly unacceptable nowadays. But I did discover from this fanzine proposal, the website it was self published on called issuu. Where now thanks to that I am releasing V&Tree Magazine to read online as a digital publication for free!
Its taken ages to come around to, which I apologise for, if only I knew of this sooner (then I might have been able to submit a decent print amarite?) but I hope you enjoy it. It has all of the energy and wonder of this blog, accompanied by new stories, recipes and wonderful graphic art and design work by us in Alovera Studio.
My Pancake Day 2014
This pancake day I wanted to try and do something special. I have been a big fan of youtube chefs, jamies foodtube, frenchguycooking and Barry from myvirginkitchen and they all have done such great pancakes. Jamie asks for something neat for #mypancakeday and so I couldn’t disappoint.
Back in my childhood summers in Australia with my family, Mum and my Aunty Pat went crazy for this one pancake stand that sold mini pancakes dusted in icing sugar. They also must have sold the pan because we have one just because of it! So I gave Mum a call and went over with Alan for pancake day to rustle up some super cute treats for the occasion.
I thought we would be making pancakes for lunch and dinner, but Mum was in desperate need for some savoury before hand, so we went into town and ate something pretty… awful to be honest. Which made us even more eager for these little pancakes! Sadly it went dark by the time we started cooking, but I hope the lighting doesn’t seem too bad in the end.
Its really tough making these little ones, I stirred up the one cup batter easy but these guys need constant attention. The cast iron pan heats so slowly at first and then its suddenly raging inferno! They get stuck and burnt easily and we were flipping them as fast as we could, with little tiny picks. But they turned out all well and dandy in the end and are so much easier to eat than having a whole stack to yourself. We doused them in lots of icing sugar, golden syrup and fruit and ate them through the rest of the day. There was also plenty of left over to take home as well and they even worked great the next day with a full english - Delish!
My Pancake Day 2014 - prt2
Little pancakes made for this years pancake day. Enjoyed with dusted icing sugar, golden syrup, fruit or even savoury in a Full English! Lots of work but plenty of fun <3
Sugruman & Cat Figurines
It was my friends birthday the other day and he always has been the guru of all sugru and so I decided to make something special this year. Sugru is a sort of rubber clay dough that you use to fix things, we were introduced to it at design uni and basically he’s never looked back. So I needed to make a sugruman just for him, but out of what? Clays not cheap to acquire and I don’t really want to use real sugru, its so expensive! Scalpy is also not worth waiting to order. So I used the good ol’ flour, salt and water, bake it dough.
I went full art attack on this project, carefully shaping it to my sketch, the dough was hard to mould into place. Once baked solid I did a few tests on other bread sculptures I made, but they turned out to still be water soluble and the paint would just absorb into them instead of sticking. It needed 2-3 coatings of mod podge varnish before the surface became easily paintable, shame on who wrote the recipe for children! Then I just had to outline everything which really made it look like Neil Buchanan worked his magic on it, finishing off with a felt sewn, rounded corner cut cape. I also worked on his cat sidekick and a little packet of sugru for batman style weaponry! - YEEEEAAHHHH!!
I send it in the post for his birthday and he was pleased as punch to receive it. See his unboxing video here on his youtube channel. Look out for this comic con for his cosplay! The future needs fixing!
Valentine’s Ramen @ Tonkotsu London
Hi all, sorry for the sudden slow update of posts. See in February when I planned the months menu, it seemed like every dish ended up making turned out yellow. Yellow of all textures and tones, which was not as flattering in photos as I would have hoped.
So come Valentines day was a good chance to get a pic of another meal. We actually planned to go to a restaurant weeks before hand but upon arrival realised that the meal we wanted didnt start until evening, which we did not want to be waiting for. So we left the place in the pouring rain, with my flats completely soaked, I thought we should try out the place called Tonkotsu in Leicester Square, since we were in the right place at the right time.
Ever since my taste of ramen in Tokyo, I have been unable to find its par. Its closest at best was char sew law mein in Greenwich Market, but thats a different dish all together, while all else have failed my expectation. We came here because apparently this was the place to get ramen in london, so we ordered up two bowels with sides and gave it a go.
In my opinion, this does come close, but still not really enough. They make a big deal of their noodles being “hand made” but really I think their too thin. They are made by a machine without love or care. The broth is thick, but gravy thick, its meant to be the consistancy of maybe a good miso soup, not gravy. Eggs were too salty, I have made soy eggs before and marination time is key. Finely the pork too thin, I ordered extra as I wanted more but still it was not as tender as it should be. All in all I guess 7/10 for it. I love my food london, I have felt heaven with this dish before and I want it again. It was well flavoured, but to the point of being salty rather than delicious.
Hourly Comic Day 2014
This is my Hourly Comic Day set for this year. This is actually the first time I have done this, completely unintentionally too as I only found out about it by 8PM later on. Last year was spectacular, with Goofy Movie type disasters, but I was so busy with uni work I just left it off too long and then forgot about it. I think this year I was particularly driven to draw my day as Alan was carsick and actually threw up on the street getting out the car, which was the first! So please enjoy my day as I have enjoyed reading many of yours too!
Homemade Rocky Road
During Christmas we were given a tonne of sweets from mum, one of which was coconut covered jumbo marshmallows, which wern’t very good in hot chocolate. So we went out and bought some digestives, chocolate, raisins, peanuts and meringues from Paul Rhodes bakery in Greenwich and made this beautiful concoction!
I followed the video for Rocky Road Kill on Jamie’s Food Tube, but everything did not combine as well as I hoped, probably because I had too much stuff in it. So I mixed each in a small bowl and microwaved it, so that the marshmallow would combine everything nicely, which it did. We gave them out to our friends and colleagues at work, which they really enjoyed. They make lovely gifts.
Christmas Day 4 (Maybe 5?) with Ali
We cant get enough of Christmas, I guess there are too many people who we want to celebrate it with but they all live so far apart. Our friend Ali came over to share and swap gifts, however I had left the turkey out for too long and it had reached its life limit, but we ate most of it so no worries. Instead we made delicious Mountain Meatballs from Jamie’s America which he was equally as happy to accept. His gift to me was Frank Pick’s London, a book about designing the London Underground and he gave Alan is 2DS a few months back before in advanced. We looked for clothes for him and found in a vintage fair a jumper that looked like a kermet the frog design. We are trending gifts to him, which so far have been green, dinosaur and muppet themed, so this gift made sense, he looks so nice in it too ^_^
Christmas Day 3 with Rory
We stayed the night at mums, in the same fashion we did on Hourly Comic Day then returned to our flat the next day. I had my friend Rory over to be with us for Christmas 3 givings and of course more food! So we still had a lot of the turkey left and new ingredients which we did up for lunch. Now I bet you are all thinking how strange it is to eat the same meal this many times, but I can assure you that not only we ate this meal more than 3 days in a row, we never got tired of it. Everything we ate was delicious once more and we had sweet mulled wine to enjoy alongside it. Also we opened our crackers together, unveiling each silly prize inside.
Christmas Day 3 with Rory (prt2)
Oh yeah I forgot to mention, all our Christmas presents were at home and not with our family and so it wasn’t until the 27th we could open them! Most of which were from Alan and I, I decided to wrap all the gifts in bows. I gave Dan a sketchbook pad pencil travel set and jumbo pencils (arty not novelty), Alan got a framed print and I got a Japanese street food cookbook I have been looking forward to opening.