Marquise au Chocky Gilbert

Australian Survivor, Australian Survivor: All Stars, Dessert, Snack, Sweets, TV, TV Recap

Previously on Australian Survivor, 24 All Stars were abandoned on the shores of Fiji looking for revenge, redemption, a combination of the two, or simply to retain their crown in Shane and Jericho’s case. Though sadly for them, their second chance ended before it even began as the Olympian became the first boot and was followed out the door by the cookie monster. They were followed by Daisy, Michelle and Henry in quick succession before the tribes switched things up. After an attempt on her scalp, Shonee took revenge on Abbey, Lydia and John before Mat was bundled in on the deal, I assume solely because he too was an athlete. We then entered the darkest timeline and lost three OGs back-to-back-to-back with Queen Phoebe, fourth place robbed goddess Flick and Nick all just missing the merge. The latter because Jacqui hulked out in the immunity challenge and kept ruining it for the tribe.

We checked in with Mokuta the next morning where Zach was ritualistically carving Nick’s initials into a tree as Sharn reflected on turning on her close ally Nick. Even though it feels like she doesn’t have the right, though maybe I am just bitter. Completely jubilant however was David who had managed to take control of the switched tribe, had an idol that his allies know about – and more importantly, fear – and a secret idol that can keep him safe. Oh and he is going into the merge with a 7-5 advantage based on swap tribes, and an in with the OG Vakama tribe. Not wanting to rest on his laurels, David called an all tribe meeting to plot for the upcoming merge, convincing them to play up that he is on the outs so that he can try and get back in with Vakama, blindside them and fully take control. And drag Zach along for fun.

Forgoing any chatter from Vakama, the tribes joined Jonathan at the top of a hill where after Harry and Shonee processed the pain of losing their bestie Nick, the tribes were officially no more as the tribes merged. AK and Moana were thrilled to have finally been able to make the merge and become an eligible bachelor and bachelorette respectively. Moana was even more motivated to win the money for her family, while David was ready to destroy his competition.

On that note, Jonathan tasked them all with their first individual challenge for an advantage in the upcoming immunity challenge. All they would need to do is hold a clay pot tethered to a rope over a ledge with the last person standing taking out the prize. Almost immediately AK dropped his pot, followed closely by David who immediately started catching up with Brooke and AK. Harry soon dropped out, joining the catch-up while Shonee dropped and was all alone down the other end, silently willing her friends to return to her side. David continued to sell Mokuta’s prearranged lie before Tarzan and Brooke dropped from the challenge. After an hour, Jonathan grew tired and forced everyone down to one hand, leading to Sharn dropping out, followed by Moana, Locky and Zach, leaving Jacqui and Lee to battle it out. After another hour in the sun Jacqui showed her first sign of weakness, while David continued to reel Vakama in with his eyes. Oh and then out of nowhere Jacqui dropped, handing Lee an advantage. Which he won’t learn about until the immunity challenge.

The merge tribe arrived at their new camp – the former Mokuta – with Tarzan thrilled to finally make the merge, Shonee was thrilled to make it again – and be one step closer to some Gucci – and AK was just thrilled about the palatial digs at the new camp. Oh and the huge feast awaiting them by the shore. Locky was screaming, the tribe were grabbing at things, Moana was cracking the booze and Shonee was just thrilled to have cutlery again. After toasting to their successes, Sharn suggested the tribe name of Kalokalo which allegedly means star in Fijian. Everyone agreed, though I assume not because they cared per se and more because they were too interested in smashing the food and eyeing up the competition.

Kalokalo slowly migrated back to the shelter where everyone was mingling, with Brooke chatting to Brooke and Lee, though not that Moana has anything to worry about given she is the Godmother and is fully in control. And she was willing to paint Mokuta as a fractured tribe to stay there. She and Sharn told Brooke about Dave being on the outs, and the need to keep him happy to blindside him. Though really, her plan was to get revenge on Locky who spent the first two weeks of the game targeting her. And voted out her bestie Mat. With that, she pulled Dave aside to lock in the vote against Locky deep in the jungle, with him thrilled by the idea given getting rid of Locky is in his best interests.

Shonee meanwhile was nervous to be in the minority and as such, decided it was time to find two people that she can flip to their side and take control. She caught up with Brooke by the well, who agreed that Dave and Zach were their best hopes and as such, Shonee got to work reminding Zach how much he loves her. She told Brooke that an easy in with Zach is birds, given he has a passion for rescuing birds and has heaps of averies. With that she loves birds and Brooke too now loves birds, regaling him with tales about hand rearing birds and honestly, I can’t actually tell if she bred birds. David could see that they were desperately trying to flip him, glad that Zach too was playing along. As such, he pulled Locky aside to see how they can take control, with Locky spilling Vakama’s entire plan and assuring Dave that Shonee is confident that she will be able to flip back and keep them all safe. Later that night Vakama 2.0, Zach and David caught up to lock in their plan for the upcoming vote, eventually settling on Sharn as Locky wished for chaos, as that is where he does his best work.

Jonathan returned for the first immunity challenge of the season where they would each have to balance on see-saw and take blocks from a dish on one end and stack them on a tray on the other, with the first till nine winning immunity. Well not Lee, as his advantage was to remove a block and only go for eight. The tribe all stepped on to their platforms and while everyone struggled to find their feet, Shonee was like a statue and quickly stacked eight like it was nothing. Sadly she lost her stack though, forcing her to restart. Thankfully she also set off a chain reaction as everyone else lost their balance allowing her to start things up again and build her second tower at lightning speed before everyone followed the trend and dropped again. Ultimately Shonee quickly built her third tower like it was nothing, securing immunity like the freaking icon that she is.

Thanks pilates!

Back at camp the tribe celebrated Shonee’s athletic display of dominance, while the icon was just thrilled to know that there is no way that she is going home. Oh and she let us know that she is just great at balancing and hasn’t even done pilates in over a year. While Locky would have preferred to have won for himself, he was glad that immunity was at the very least in his alliance’s hands and as such, can target Sharn with the help of David and Zach and take control. He then got way to confident and hot damn – Locky, you in danger girl.

Almost like I manifested it, Moana pulled Sharn and Lee aside to lock in the vote for Locky and tee up Sharn to play the fool and pretend to slip that they are targeting AK. With that, she pulled AK aside to let him know that her alliance would be voting for him tonight. And given he has no reason not to trust her, took the information to David and Locky and reconfirmed that they were still on for voting out Sharn, nervous about going home himself should their plans fail. The only person more cocky than Locky at the moment was David, giddy to be in the swing vote position and safely in the majority no matter which side they select.

He caught Zach up on the plan and returned to play mind games with Vakama 2.0 but was proving to be so convincing, that Tarzan started to panic that he had actually flipped. This made him nervous enough to call Moana over and the duo approached him to stress the importance of the upcoming vote to prove their loyalties. Moana was nervous, Locky and Brooke were confident and while it feels obvious, it is so obvious that Locky will go, that maybe I am wrong?

At tribal council Harry spoke about the intricacies of navigating the first post-merge tribal council, before Jonathan threw shade at AK for not making it before. AK spoke about his surprise at how few people approached him after the immunity challenge and truly felt like nothing had changed and everyone was locked in their alliances. David spoke about someone potentially being blindsided, given everyone is keen to make a statement and take out a big player first. Locky admitted to feeling on the bottom as the former Vakama, though was hopeful to have found enough cracks to save them. Sharn spoke about splitting cracks and honestly I get distracted by such innuendo.

Harry continued to prove how dangerous he would be if he gets the chance to plead his case at tribal council, calmly outlining the importance of not only surviving but also impressing the jury enough to win. David agreed but pointed out that you need to get there, oft by making smart decisions, to even get to plead your case. He then spoke about Mayan sacrifice and it got real dark, real quick. Zach had a slip of the tongue, alluding to the vote coming down to old tribal lines. As he desperately tried to play the fool and bumble around who could be aligned, you could see him desperately wanting to crawl back into his avery.

Harry said that they’re at the point where some people haven’t had the chance to play the game yet and as such, looks forward to them showing what they are made off. Locky urged people to step up, while Moana slyly reminded him that she has. Tarzan spoke about the importance of loyalty, while his ally Moana preached the virtues of making the safe move. Locky interjected and told her that there is no way that he will vote for her in the end then. She tried to defend playing it safe, before Locky schooled her about the pre-merge not really counting, since they aren’t around to reward the big moves and as such, she needs to step up. Moana schooled him and asserted that a quiet game doesn’t mean it isn’t a good game. Sharn was confident, Locky was confident and shock horror, David was feeling confident. With that, the tribe voted and poor Locky discovered that his was misplaced as Mokuta 2.0 stuck together to send him out of the game and over to the jury.

Likely not to vote for Moana.

Oh dear, sweet, beautiful Locky – I hate to see him go, but hot damn watching him leave truly floods my basement. He entered Loser Lodge just as it upgraded to the Jury Villa, so I took him into my arms, realised I am devoid of upper body strength and got him to take me in his arms and spin me in a circle like a rom com.

“The King of the Jury needs his queen, and I am forever yours,” I whispered into his ear.

He giggled, maybe awkwardly, maybe a little nervous, I don’t know. What I do know, however, is that Locky is straight up the most interesting player of his archetype besides Malcolm. Good strategically, charming and likeable, athletic and built like a God, he is perfect for this game and could have taken out the season, had Dave and Moana not had control.

His eyes welled up with tears as I told him all this before he started giggling again, this time at the sight of my Marquise au Chocky Gilbert.

 

 

Velvety and smooth, sweet, rich and oh so delicious, the marquise au chocolat melts in your mouth. And is the perfect thing to distract from post boot pain, in bed with your love.

Enjoy!

 

 

Marquise au Chocky Gilbert
Serves: 2 lovers that can also be friends.

Ingredients
255g dark chocolate, cut into pieces
1 tbsp espresso, cooled
1 tbsp amaretto
100g raw caster sugar
5 eggs, separated
175g unsalted butter, melted
cocoa, for dustin’

Method
Line a loaf tin with cling.

Place the chocolate in a heatproof bowl with the coffee and amaretto and place in the top of a double boiler – well, if you don’t have steamy, unbridled sexual tension with your mate – and cook, stirring until the chocolate has just melted and everything has come together.

Meanwhile combine the caster sugar in yolks in a bowl and whisk for a couple of minutes, or until light and fluffy. You could do this in a stand mixture, but I like to watch Locky whisk shirtless and I got him to give me a hand. Fold through the chocolate and butter until well combined. Leave to cool.

Finally whisk the egg whites in a stand mixer until stiff peaks form. Fold through the combined chocolate mixture until it forms a homogenous, shiny mixture. Transfer to the lined tin, cover with cling until airtight and place in the fridge to set for a minimum of 12 hours.

Once set, turn out, cut into slices and serve, dusted lightly with cocoa. They devour, on plates, or Locky’s chest. I went with the latter option.

 

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Irish Creem Daly

Drink, Survivor, Survivor: Edge of Extinction, TV Recap

Previously on Survivor wait, no, what – when will I learn? New season, new rules, same ol’ chain of Fijian Islands. While last season we went biblical to distract from the fact Survivor lives in Fiji, leading to a glorious season with David toppling Goliath, this time we’re journeying to the Edge of Extinction which I have numerous reservations about. But you know what else I thought would suck? David vs. Goliath and look how wrong I was.

We ominously open on a barren island with a lone figure walking around before finding 14 newbies on a sailboat in the middle of the Fijian ocean. We first meet Wardog who I want to like but no I will struggle with for the first few episodes since we’re going to be calling him Wardog. In any event, he is from the military but is now on his way to being a lawyer and, obvi, plans to keep that hush, hush, hush. Swap meet vendor Wendy is super excited to be here as a super mega best value fan, before even finding out that she will be competing against David, Aubry, Kelley and Joe who are returning for another shot at the title. Joe finally realising that being a challenge beast is intimidating and as such, he plans to lay low and uplift people. And TBH, as much as I want to hate him, I can’t help but love him.

I am basic and I don’t care.

Joining them in making their triumphant return is a hybrid of the Outcast and Redemption Island twists, where once you’re voted out you can either sit on the aforementioned island and wait around for a chance to compete to reenter the game, or continue on your merry way into Ponderosa. In any event, this season is a logistical nightmare for me and I appreciate your care and concern.

Foregoing any form of introductions, Probst welcomed the newbies to Survivor and then told them that someone is going to be booted within 72. He then elaborated and tried to sneak in the twist by telling them they’re always on the edge of being booted, or extinction if you will, before reminding them that even good players can’t win. And as a matter of fact, he has four past contestants that have lost 7 times between them back to the competition for another shot.

We then met Lauren who is a superfan of Kelley and like me, thirsts for Joe, so she was thrilled to see them. Ron loves David, Julia loves Aubry and everyone was jumping out of their skin with excitement before Probst ran through the returnees’ report cards, filling Kelley with rage given he made her and Aubry sound like the biggest threats. Kelley and David were sent to join the Manu tribe, featuring Wentworth superfan Lauren while Aubry and Joe will lead the Kama tribe. From the very first moment, given the tribes were tasked with looting the ship before making it to their boats. Amongst the madness Ron from the Kama tribe found a secret advantage and poor little Keith came close to drowning until Lauren, thankfully,  saved him.

We arrived at the Manu tribe where everyone introduced themselves and congratulated themselves on surviving the marooning. They then started to wonder whether they will survive Rick, who started telling themselves about his life as a news anchor and made a bunch of jokes that it appeared no one actually found funny. Amongst the introductions, the tribe got to work setting up the camp with Kelley and David lamenting that it is so hard to trust anyone. Instead of making an alliance with each other, Kelley got to work approaching Lauren to form an alliance and generally make as many bonds as possible. David and his newfound confidence seemed to be finding his footing, as did Wendy who shared the fact she had tourettes with the tribe and instantly endeared herself to literally everyone. Myself included. Wendy 4 lyf.

Meanwhile over at Kama we met Victoria who desperately loves survivor. Speaking of loves, Joe tried to hide the fact that he is amazing, however proceeded to feed everyone and start fire with Aubry as soon as they landed on the beach. I mean, he even stole Aurora’s heart and she is gay. Julie proved to be the most relatable, hating the outdoors and totally struggling in nature. Well until she started chopping wood and vowed not to be perceived as the weak older woman trope. Sorry Wendy, but you’ve been usurped.

Wait, no. I love them both.

We then caught up with Ron who vowed that Kama was the greatest tribe of all time, which let’s be honest, didn’t bode well for, I want to say Jacob on Ghost Island. Though given they had a tonne of food next to a roaring fire, he is kinda right. He took a quick moment away from the dream tribe to read the note to his advantage, which he followed to the well and dug up to discover he won himself a menu, where he can either steal a reward, get an extra vote or get immunity … but it expires by the third tribal council.

Joe joined fellow zaddy Eric and Gavin to discuss what the hell Edge of Extinction could mean before checking in with Aubry to see how she felt. While she agreed that they’re both getting good vibes, they won’t need them around to make fire forever and as such she needs to lay low until the right time to strike. And I feel like I’ve already seen more of Aubry this episode than we did during all of Game Changers. Gavin and Eric meanwhile were discussing how long they will need to keep the returnees around, vowing to get rid of Aubry ASAP and keeping Joe around as a shield for as long as required.

Back at Manu Reem went to check on the washing she put on the shore to dry, which she thought was helpful but was actually pissing everyone off. Except Keith who tried to bond with Reem because she is a mother figure and he is a literal kid, however she didn’t want to be seen that way and kinda shut him down. Though she then taught him to swim with Wendy and I love them so much. As did Lauren who was proud of Keith learning to swim. That didn’t stop her from being thrilled by the fact they isolated themselves, allowing the other six – featuring a total zaddy who I think is Chris – to joke about being the majority.

My boy Jeffrey returned to the screen for the first immunity challenge of the season where the tribes were required to run through a rope obstacle before someone rings a bell and everyone crosses a balance beam, release a bar to make the beam wider, climb a crows nest, drop a slide and then, obvi, solve a giant slide puzzle.

Chris hopped through the ropes in his jocks – swoon – before battling Joe to climb a rope and ring the bell and let me tell you, these boys are ringing my damn bell. Joe made quick work of the balance beam giving Kama an early lead while Manu floundered, except for challenge beast David who got across while everyone else struggled. Kelley in particular who fell off the beam and literally smashed her damn face. Kama continued to extended their lead, working on the puzzle before Manu even crossed the rope bridge. Despite David’s best efforts to guide Manu through the puzzle, their comeback was too late as Julia – I think, she hasn’t been shown otherwise – figured out the puzzle and coached her tribe to victory.

Back at camp Kelley was devastated to be heading to her second first tribal council, knowing that one tiny thing can send you home when you’ve only been around people a couple of days. Keith, Reem, Wendy and Rick caught up by the well, with Reem pushing hard to take out Lauren or Kelley whose bond was obvious. Though given how hard she is pushing the point, it got Keith offside, who them went and told both the girls, Wardog, David and Eric about the plan. Which solidified their plans to get rid of Reem, given Wendy is stronger in challenges.

Speaking of Wendy, she approached Wardog – I’m trying to get into it – and David about getting rid of Lauren, though they told her that they will be getting rid of Reem tonight. Wendy told them that no matter what, she will vote with Reem out of loyalty which rubbed Wardog the wrong way, as he said it was proof of her being stubborn rather than a super loyal ally he could pick up the next day. Wendy then took the information back to Reem, who got super angry and approached David to save herself though was holding a machete and kind looked wild.

At tribal council Rick spoke about factions quickly forming based off which jobs they were doing before Reem immediately started to spit fire, pissed that her name has been thrown out there. Kelley explained that is part of the game and her name had been thrown out, before Reem explained that it was because she was a legend and she should be honoured. Kelley countered that being voted out doesn’t make it an honour, while Reem continued to dig a hole for herself, saying that she is a target due to age discrimination and would like to wrestle to prove her strength. Probst then questioned whether she has a passion for confrontation before Zaddy Chris said that she may be a little too much and it is pissing people off, which she immediately got defensive about before Wardog – who I will now write without cringing – said he felt she was too much and wished she would just stop moving people’s shit.

She defended trying to help everyone out and while Wardog agreed him clothes were dry thanks to her, she needs to stop dwelling on the one issue. Wendy admitted that she likes Reem for all the reasons everyone else is struggling with her, due to her close bond with her mum. Reem continued to rage, wondering why they didn’t just ask her not to touch their stuff. Probst admitted that it seems like everyone is pretty much against her, and Wendy agreed that they’re likely losing Reem tonight which lead to Reem talking about how painful it would be and while I feel sorry for her, she should be in for a pleasant suprise if it comes to fruition. Which it did, making her the first person voted out.

And potentially the winner if she makes it back in. Who knows.

While the smart of ironically – is it Alanis? – being reemed by her tribe and becoming the first boot was dulled by discovering she has a chance to return to the game, it wasn’t until I was tucking an icy cold bottle of Irish Creem Daly in her bag – don’t tell Abi, but I think Peih-Gee tried to steal it – to get her through the first few days alone that I saw a fire return to her belly. No doubt because of the alcohol.

 

 

Like Old Gregg before me, I am quite partial to drinking Baileys, though preferably not from a shoe. Though I totally would in a pinch, or Tom Schwartz level blackout. Packing a punch of whisky, a hit of coffee and the sweet, sweet nectar known as condensed milk, there is no better way to usher in retired life.

I can retire at 32, right? You know what, so what, who cares – enjoy!

 

 

Irish Creem Daly
Serves: 1 lonely first boot sitting on an island alone in a downpour.

Ingredients
1 cup double cream
395g can sweetened condensed milk
1⅔ cup Irish whiskey
2 tbsp chocolate syrup
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp fresh espresso, cooled

Method
Chuck everything in a blender – or a magic bullet or something if they were so inclined to sponsor me, but they’re not – and blitz for a minute or so, or until smooth.

Transfer to a bottle and leave to chill in the fridge before downing.

 

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Cophie Clarke Ice Cream

Dessert, Snack, Sweets

While my boy Probst may not agree, my friend, goddaughter and spirit animal Sophie Clarke is up there with one of my favourite survivor victors. And as such, is the perfect person to help continue our countdown heroically healing hustler countdown.

I’ve known dear, sassy, witty Soph since she was a wee babe, being an old friend of her father, journalist Thurston Clarke. We met at Yale and became the closest of friends, with him eventually asking me to be the godfather of his daughter Sophie.

Way back in 2010-11 – a time when Australian Survivor was yet to be rebooted for the second time – I decided that Sophie needed to compete on, and obviously win, Survivor to fulfill my dream for me.

While I was completely shooketh when I got out to Samoa and discovered that Probst had neglected to tell me that my sweet goddaughter would be competing on a rigged returnee captain, redemption island season. Thankfully for me, my sharp-tongue and athletic prowess had rubbed off and helped propel her to day 38, where she defeated challenge beast Ozzy and sent him out of the game.

As much as I hate to admit it, Coach did play a strong game in South Pacific – I will always prefer his performance in his Tocantins boot episode – Sophie destroyed him at final tribal council (like Michelle did to Ben on Monday night) and clearly articulated why she was better and therefore deserved the win.

Given she’s been hella busy with med school, we haven’t seen as much of each other as we would have liked recently so she jumped at the chance to fly on over and mark the beginning of the new season … and casually gloat about now being Dr Clarke.

We used to spend a lot of time together, wandering around New York over a cup of joe, so I knew there was only one thing I could possible whip up – a delicious Cophie Clarke Ice Cream.

 

 

Shamelessly – and mildly – adapted from Nigella’s recipe, this sweet treat is near perfection. Particularly when you half the instant and switch out the liqueur for espresso. Who would have thought I’d cut out alcohol?

In any event, enjoy!

 

 

Cophie Clarke Ice Cream
Makes: 1.5L.

Ingredients
600ml thickened cream
395g condensed milk
2 tbsp instant espresso powder
¼ cup fresh espresso, cooled

Method
Whisk all the ingredients together until soft peaks form.

Transfer to airtight containers and freeze overnight, or for six hours or so.

Then devour, greedily.

 

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Mochate Temby Ice Cream

Australian Survivor, Australian Survivor (2017), Dessert, Snack, Sweets, TV Recap

Previously on Australian Survivor, 24 strangers were marooned in Samoa with Locky continuing to buck my trend of only backing middle-aged women to be my firm favourite. Emphasis on firm, given his second straight episode of nudity. Tara, Jacqui and Henry were also amazing, the latter two finding the Asaga idol together. At Samatau Adam wasn’t so lucky on his idol hunt, with AK snatching it from under his nose, questionably playing it on Jarrad, and Adam becoming the second boot.

Back at camp Samatau congratulated AK on his move slash surviving tribal and it seems the plan to secure Jarrad’s loyalty was paying since Jarrad is too nice to turn on him. Sadly Locky kept his pants on for the entire pre-credits scene. Should we start a prayer circle? Dearest RuPaul … sorry, wrong show.

Just like that, Luke and Jericho had some nocturnal cuddles through the night at Asaga and my belief in RuPaul, gay god, was reconfirmed. On the hetero end of the spectrum, Sam and Mark snuggled through the night and made themselves targets. Isn’t it nice that Survivor is the one game where being a heterosexual couple is considered an issue?

The next day, Locky and Jarrad spoke about Tessa and Kate being on the out, finally introducing us to Dr Tessa … who was well pissed about Tara flipping on their alliance. The boys were feeling very confident in their misfits alliance – I love living in a world where someone that looks like Locky is a misfit – while Tessa and Kate cornered Tara to find out where they stood, and we learnt that Tara is more across everything that is going on than her tribe mates give her credit for.

Over at the couples retreat that is Asaga, Mark W spoke about having a crush on Sam, though acknowledged she was dangerous. Michelle was jealous to not have that kind of love on the outside – it is day seven Mich and this is not The Bachelor – while Henry and Jacqui discussed the possibility of using their idol to get rid of Sam and break them up. Side note: wouldn’t that be an amazing twist on The Bachelor? Jacry entering the mansion to sabotage budding couples?!

Wanting to putting an end to my corporate cross-promotion of the Bachelor, JLP arrived for the reward challenge where Jacs thought getting rid of Adam was a dud move on Samatau’s part. Anneliese tried to defend the decision, but her umming and ahhing wastn’t overly convincing. Continuing in the killer challenge tradition, the tribes had to push a giant balls through obstacles, push it over a bridge, have two tribe members mount and ride it between two platforms, toss some rings to drop a ramp and allow the remaining tribe mates to push it up an incline and into a hole, for comfort and a tarp. Which is pretty much what I do with my balls for comfort, so it all makes perfect sense.

Asaga got out to an early lead with the obstacle before Jarrad dominating riding the balls, overtaking Jacqui and giving Samatau the lead. Despite Jericho’s best efforts to catch-up, Samatau took out victory … and almost Ziggy, as she followed the ball into the hole. Locky was not happy – swoon – about the her almost injury and told Mark H he needs to listen and pull it back, setting up a feud that I’d rather not witness as I kinda dig Australia’s Tarzan. Plus if anyone needed to be yelled at, it is Locky … for keeping his pants on.

Back at camp Mark H – who henceforward I will agree to called Tarzan – spoke about Locky feeling threatened by him and decided to have some fun, throwing shade at Locky’s shelter building ability. It may be my rose coloured glasses, but I feel like Locky still came off as the good guy in this sitch.

Meanwhile over at Asaga, Sam started to realise that being a coupled up control freak isn’t the best in this game. She then proceeded to approach literally every person in the tribe about whether they have heard her name thrown around, which Odette, Jacqui and Kent handled with ease and Sarah went up in my books by telling her straight up, that running around talking to everyone is making her look paranoid.

Kate and Tessa were still scrambling over at Samatau, plotting about which crack to target to get an in with the tribe – enter AK, stage right! Kate pulled him aside to point out that he is on the bottom of the current majority and should flip, which is completely logical except she was kinda patronising about it, so I don’t know if he’ll actually listen. While this went down, Tarzan and Locky brooded at opposite ends of the beach, post-fight, which Tessa used to her advantage, seeing if Tarzan was feeling ok and seamlessly transitioned into propositioning him to go idol hunting with her later on, as people wouldn’t question him poking around the jungle.

Back at Asaga, Sam continued to act extremely paranoid and pulled Henry and Jacqui aside to reconfirm their alliance by the fire. While it was hardly a success, she was perceptive enough to notice that Henry and Jacqui are closer than people think. Playing the role of guard dog well, Mark W followed Jacry to the well to make sure they weren’t plotting against them. They then returned to camp and were greeted by Kent informing them Mark was definitely sent on Sam’s behalf, firmly planting the target on her back for Jacqui and Henry vowing to throw the challenge. Mark – no pun intended – my words, don’t cross Jacry.

On that note, JLP returned for said immunity challenge where Henry reconfirmed that he will be throwing the challenge, Ziggy and Peter pointed out their reward tarp was quite small and Michelle mentioned she hates roughing it, which I get, but it’s a terrible thing to say before an immunity challenge. Said challenge, required the tribes to row a raft out around crates, diving into the water to retrieve keys, returning to the shore, releasing wood and working the wood into a bigger tower than a guide pole.

Samatau got out to an early lead thanks to Locky’s lead, while Asaga fell behind thanks to Henry’s deliberately awful leadership. Despite poor Kent’s best efforts with the knots Samatau returned to the beach well before Henry left Asaga tethered to the mooring and then acted as a brake on the row back to the beach. Asaga returned to the beach while Samatau’s tower was well above the height of people, but miraculously caught up and took home immunity, much to Henry’s dismay.

A defeated Samatau returned to camp to commence scrambling, with Tessa and Kate clearly on the outs as the mega-alliance of eight decided to get rid of Tessa at tribal. As soon as they broke up, Tessa pounced on AK and Jarrad and got to work trying to convince them to flip and get rid of Tara with she, Kate and Tarzan. Not wanting to rest on their laurels, they then approached Locky to try and get him to flip for shits and giggles. Tara and Tessa got together to acknowledge they were both targeting each other, with Tara rightfully pointing out that she told Adam she was out and didn’t actually flip and the tension kind diffused … which obviously meant it was time for tribal.

Jonathan started off by rubbing salt in their wounds, pointing out they have a habit of blowing early leads. Aimee was too focused to notice Asaga catching up, aye, while Tarzan pointed out that it sometimes is just the luck of the day and that the tribe definitely needs to come together as a single tribe. AK agreed, which got some laughs from JLP since he was on the bottom last episode, before Tessa launched into an attack on Tara which backfired completely, with her allies coming to her defense. While Kate played the situation quite well, Tessa continued to attack Tara for flipping which Peter pointed out is ironic, since that is what she wants AK to do to save her.

The votes quickly piled up on Tessa and Kate, with Tessa somehow surviving the vote and Kate sent out of the game as the third boot. I’ve known Kate for years, meeting in Västervik in Sweden while she was working as an investment banker. While she deemed me and my plan to sell naked images of my boyfriend Skarsy a bad investment (something about needing his consent, which was not part of the business plan), she did appreciate me trying to sweeten the deal with some Mochate Temby Ice Cream.

 

 

This no-churn ice cream is the perfect dessert, requiring minimal effort for maximum gain. The intense coffee flavour smacks you in the face, while the chocolate biscuits soften the flavour and give some much needed crunch. And, well, the entire mocha element I guess.

Enjoy!

 

 

Mochate Temby Ice Cream
Serves: 6-8.

Ingredients
600ml double cream
395g condensed milk
¼ cup instant espresso powder
¼ cup cooled espresso or Tia Maria
250g chocolate biscuits, crushed

Method
Whisk the double cream, condensed milk, espresso powder and coffee or Tia Maria until soft peaks form. Do not over whip or it will become too firm.

Fold through the chocolate biscuits, decant into an airtight container and freeze overnight.

Then, if you were able to wait, devour.

 

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Adam Pumpkin Spiced Latte

Australian Survivor, Australian Survivor (2017), Drink, Snack, Sweets, TV Recap

Previously on Australian Survivor JLP marooning 24 new castaways on Samoa where Locky quickly became my favourite by taking off his clothes, with Tara a close second for her relatable thirst and AK a distant twenty-fourth for being insufferable. After an epic immunity challenge – where not-military man Mark W dominated on the very military rope obstacle – targets were firmly painted on Joan and Kent’s back after losing the puzzle. Despite a last ditch effort from Luke to flip the script on control-freak Sam, Joan became the first boot of Survivor and Kent lived to see another day.

Back at camp Kent got to work winning everyone over telling them there were no hard feelings and he wouldn’t kill them in their sleep that night. After that faux pas, Sam quickly confirmed that she was pissed off about the votes not falling how she was expecting and Luke continued to look like some that’s been drinking heavily since lunch but is trying to play it cool in front of the in-laws.

Over at the triumphant Samatau, a sadly clothed Locky was feeling the love and basking in the glow of the fire while AK realised he screwed up within the first few days and broke down on the beach by himself. Secret poker player Adam went to see if he was ok, though didn’t actually care which makes Adam a tad more likeable.

Meanwhile Sam was still seething back at Asaga, despite being in an almost-majority alliance with Mark W, Henry, Sarah and Jacqui. Meanwhile Michelle, the one that Sam trusts the least, is spearheading a counter alliance with skittish Luke, Odette, Jericho and Ben, leaving Kent in the middle like Malcolm. Side note: he kind of looks like an old man version of Frankie Muniz, no?

Giving up on pursuing Sharks, Mark decided to go fishing while Adam went fishing for the Samatau majority, pulling in Tara, Kate, Peter and Ziggy, which makes my boner for Locky concerned despite five does not equal a majority. Feeling screwed, AK decided to try and fool Jarrad into believing that he had a – and I quote – chicken idol, which for some reason Jarrad bought, spreading it to Anneliese, Aimee, Locky, Tara and Adam spooking literally everyone.

I think sensing my growing anger at AK, JLP returned for the first reward challenge of the season – for fishing gear and an outrigger canoe – requiring tribe members to square off against each other greasing up like Willie and racing down a slide to grab a ball and stick it in a hole.

First up were Locky and Mark W where Locky quickly scored the first point for Samatau, Adam quickly scored over Luke, Jericho beat Peter followed by Queen Jacqui tying things up against Anneliese. Mark H quickly won my heart, dacking Ben and giving us our first bum of the challenge. Shocking no one, waterpolo champion Ziggy scored for Samatau, Jarrad smoke Kent and Aimee extended their lead before AK used his walk up to the start with Henry to tell him how badly he is doing, before getting salt rubbed in the wounds with Henry dominating. Sam and Sarah continued to catch Asaga up before Locky and Mark W arrived for their second battle where the latter became my second favourite castaway, quickly pulling Locky’s pant completely off, leaving him to dive for victory in uncensored glory.

Praise Channel 10 not pixelating! I’ll be back in five, bare … with me. Seriously, this is two episodes from two with Locky’s arse and I am LIVING FOR IT.

Back at Samatau, Locky was glad to have secure the win despite losing some dignity. But seriously Locky, NO, dat ass – YAS GAWD. Never apologise for that. While going through their loot, AK noticed an idol clue hidden in the outrigger, as did Adam, leading to Adam getting his allies to distract AK to take it for himself. He quickly shared the clue with Kate, discovering that the idol was hidden on an island off their beach, securing them only AK rage.

Meanwhile over at Asaga, Luke continued to act skittish and therefore decided it was a great idea to channel Tony and build a spy shack. Thankfully Jacqui brought some dignity and excitement to the affair, snatching the idol clue from the well with Henry which the latter hid down his pants, making me realise that I’d really like Mark W to dack him sometime soon. After a quick search around camp, Henry and Jacqui secured the Asaga idol and became the improved Australian Survivor power couple – move El and Lee, I think we’ve found our Romber!

Over at Samatau, we finally met Peter where he spoke about hating nature which is in an instant win in my book. Adam quickly took the attention, searching unsuccessful for the idol – which was directly under his hands – in plain sight of the remaining tribe members who were busy building their house. AK then went over to search for the idol while Adam started threatening Queen Tara, Kate and Ziggy, saying that if they don’t help, they are against him. The girls quickly shut him down, correctly pointing out shelter is more important that proving their loyalty to one person of the twelve person tribe.

Ziggy and Locky went with Adam to try and put a stop to AK finding the idol, where Locky quickly discovered the string to the immunity idol wrapper. Assuming that Adam either found the idol from the very obvious clue or is a completely moron, Locky and Ziggy kindly went with the former. Wanting to continue painting a target on his back, Adam then decided to threaten them to vote him out. Seriously, he and AK should align to get booted back-to-back.

After all the idol excitement, JLP returned for a downright dirty – hopefully in a Locky writhing around naked in the sand kind of way – immunity challenge where the castaways had to race through a mud pit, through some bamboo, then through a wall, play an island version of whack-a-mole and knock down tiles with a club. Samatau got out to an early lead with (a sadly clothed) Locky dominating the obstacles for his tribe, while Asaga was held back by Kent who was the polar opposite to my lover, Lock.

Samatau continued to dominate with the pegging section, before Adam blew a fraction of their lead not knowing how to open a draw. Despite throwing the clubs with an Olympic water polo player, AK quickly knocked out Samatau’s first three idols before Henry and Jacqui finally got in the game. Being the power couple we all deserve, Jacry quickly caught up and took out immunity for Asaga.

A defeated Samatau returned to camp where Anneliese was feeling nervous after choking in the challenge. Adam was also feeling anxious after his earlier idol faux pas, which was confirmed as Locky – again, sadly clothed – told the girls while washing the mud off his torso that if AK doesn’t play an idol tonight, Adam is guaranteed to have the idol.

AK continued to pretend he had the fake chicken idol, which nobody was buying at all which I think is a ploy to attract votes so he can play his real idol and get rid of a threat. Anneliese, Peter, Locky, Aimee and Jarrad plotted to split the vote between Adam and Kate, while Adam tried to win back Tara and secure some numbers. Thankfully for him, AK continued to act hella sketchy and made Jarrad uncomfortable just before leaving for tribal council.

Jonathan quickly got to work needling the tribe with Aimee, mate, talking about how much the rain was hurting them, mate. Ziggy and Tara spoke about trust, the latter quite awkwardly trying to avoid the truth, before quickly doing an about face and explaining that AK and Adam were acting paranoid and crazy the day before. AK and Adam had a little back and forth arguing about who has the idol before Aimee finally became likeable, roasting AK for his shitty attempt at a fake idol and confirming Adam is playing way too aggressively.

Adam tried to backpedal – off topic, but I think Peter and I have the same glasses – before he and AK fought a bit more and Anneliese announced that she felt expendable as they headed off to vote. Oh and nope, Peter and I do not have the same glasses. Proving my two-pars-ago theory correct, AK pulled the actual idol out of the bag – where do you think he got the string for his chicken idol? – and then PLAYED IT FOR JARRAD. The votes rolled in for AK, Anneliese and Kate, before piling up on Adam and sending him out of the game as the second boot. Despite feuding aggressively on the Queensland poker circuit, I couldn’t be too cruel to my frenemy, low-rent-Parko, so took him in a tepid embrace and whipped him up a kind, yet non-committal-date-esque Adam Pumpkin Spiced Latte.

 

 

The Pumpkin Spice Latte is probably Starbucks’ most famous holiday flavoured beverage and for good reason, it is sickly delicious (and coffee in America sucks, so you need syrup). While my version isn’t as sweet, it is just as amazing with the delicate hint of vanilla, whack of pumpkin and spices perfectly mingling with the coffee to make me consider supporting Christmas in July as a thing.

Enjoy!

 

 

Adam Pumpkin Spiced Latte
Serves: 1.

Ingredients
1 cup milk
1 tbsp pumpkin puree
1 tsp muscovado sugar
½ tsp vanilla
pinch of cinnamon and nutmeg
2 shots freshly brewed coffee

Method
Combine the milk, puree, sugar, vanilla and spices in a small saucepan over low heat and whisk until piping hot. I mean, it doesn’t get too foamy like a latte should, but it will do.

Pour the shots of coffee into a latte glass, slowly pour in the milk, sprinkle with cinnamon and devour.

Well down, but devour is kinda my thing.

 

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Bananarama Bread

Baking, Bread, Dessert, Snack, Sweets

I can’t believe it has taken me this long to reconnect with my girls, Sara, Keren and Siobhan – aka Bananarama. Late last year I started receiving voicemails from all of the girls individually, asking to drop by and talk.

“Hey Ben, it’s Sar! Give me a call, I’d love to reconnect. Don’t make me Bobby D for you!”

“Ben – its Kez. I hear its been a Cruel Summer in Brisbane, call me back we need to talk.”

By the time Sio-b-han called to confess her guilt of love in the first degree, I knew what they were playing at and was equal parts excited and terrified. As you should already know, Siobhan returned to the group earlier this year and as the other founding member of Bananarama, I knew they’d be desperate to get me back.

I attended St. George’s School for Girls with Sez and Kez, and we became the fastest of friends. Sara and I then met Siobhan while studying fashion journalism and the band was quickly formed. Fun fact: I convinced them to name the band after my passion for penis … which ultimately led to me leaving the group.

Oh, I should clarify – I convinced them to name it Bananarama without explaining that it was also a festival I held in the West Village in the late 50s / early 60s.

The truth got me kicked out of the group in the early 80s for lying to them – they loved it, thus keeping it, but the betrayal cut deep – and we didn’t speak until 1987 when they wrote the hit song Love in the First Degree as an apology. While our friendship was renewed, I couldn’t rejoin the group as Maggie Thatch had banned me from the U.K.

While we’ve stayed in contact throughout the years, we haven’t seen each other in close to a decade. I guess there was always a part of me that knew that they’d want to reform but due to the nodules I shared with Julie Andrews, I wasn’t sure I could bring myself to sing again.

After holding each other for what felt like hours, we quickly caught up on life and laughed the night away. Sure the girls were disappointed that I couldn’t bring myself to rejoin the band – they don’t have to know I’m a bee’s dick away from convincing Celine Dion to start a duo – they were just thrilled to see me and share a delicious Bananarama Bread.

 

 

Like Apu and Mandula, I am a firm, firm believer that banana bread solves all of life’s problems. Throw in some walnuts and chocolate? Well I guess you’re in for a damn delightful treat.

Enjoy!

 

 

Bananarama Bread
Serves: 8.

Ingredients
4 very ripe bananas
1 tbsp vanilla extract
pinch salt
150ml vegetable oil
2 eggs
150g raw caster sugar
¼ cup fresh espresso, cooled
200g plain flour
½ tsp bicarb soda
½ cup chopped walnuts
½ roughly chopped milk chocolate

Method
Preheat the oven to 170°C and line a loaf tin.

Mash the bananas in the bowl of an electric mixer with the vanilla and salt. Using the paddle attachment, mix on low while adding the oil. Add the eggs one by one, still mixing, before adding the sugar and coffee.

Remove the bowl from the mixer and add the flour and bicarb and quickly stir with the paddle until the mixture binds. Return to the mixer and stir on medium for a minute. Remove again, fold through the walnuts and chocolate, and pour into the loaf tin.

Place in the oven and bake for 45 minutes to an hour, or until golden, risen and a cake tester comes out clean. Remove from the oven, allow to cool in the pan for fifteen minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely … if you can wait.

If not, just devour.

 

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Zach Braffogato

Drink, Grammy Gold, Grammy Gold: Golden Little Pill, Sweets

No doubt your first thought when you heard about Grammy Gold was finally, Ben’s friendship with Zach Braff is finally going to get the coverage it deserves.

So yes, I’ve opted not to zig or zag and instead do as you predicted and include my dear friend and famed Grammy winner, TV actor and director Zachy B in this Grammy celebration … despite our infamous falling out after my name was mysteriously struck from the Garden State soundtrack credits, losing me my chance at a Grammy.

Despite promising that neither he nor his other bestie/Scrubs co-star Donald Faison were involved, it begged the question, why even mention Don?

What resulted was a bitter decade-long feud – on my part – with me trying to bring him down at every opportunity. However after successfully getting Scrubs axed in 2010 and blocking studios from funding his follow-up film Wish I was Here, I felt unfulfilled and donated $100,000 of my grifted funds to help him make his movie and rekindled our friendship in the process.

It was a slow process to rebuild our relationship – particularly with him forbidding me from getting back with my ex / his new frequent collaborator James Franco – but we’ve finally got back to how it was in the good old days and he jumped at the opportunity to drop by, chat the Grammys – he is backing Straight Outta Compton (named after a song I co-wrote) to take out his old category – and catch-up over a perky nana Zach Braffogato.

 

zach-braffogato-1

 

Ice cream in coffee aka an affogato is delicious and perfect – the ice cream makes it sweet and thick and balances with the sharp coffee. Perfect, right? Well try coffee ice cream in your coffee … that is truly perfect.

Enjoy!

 

zach-braffogato-2

 

Zach Braffogato
Serves: 1.

Ingredients
double shot of freshly poured espresso
a scoop of coffee ice cream

Method
Pour the espresso in the cup – bucking the traditional method, I know – and add in a dollop of ice cream.

Down / devour.

 

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