Category Archives: Lifestyle

Lifestyle-related posts

The best books to help you eat seasonally

Seasonal eating is nothing new – just ask your grandparents and the generations before them. However, over time, with growing global markets and increasing supermarket competition, we have become accustomed to being able to eat our favourite foods year round. This liberty not only makes eating out of season foods expensive but our palate misses out on some glorious tastes that you only get when you’re eating the freshest of fruits and vegetables in the peak of their season (think juicy peaches in summer and fragrant oranges in winter).

As the weather changes across the globe (we can feel the impending winter here in Melbourne) so does the fresh produce that is available and this is a great time to start experimenting and trying new recipes or reworking those old ones. It’s with this in mind that we have had a poke around the internet and found some fabulous titles that will bring a little seasonal flair to your dinner table.

Food In Jars by Marisa McClellan

Stories of wild blackberry jam and California Meyer lemon marmalade from Marissa McClellan’s childhood make this book a read as pleasurable as it is delicious; her home-canned food, learned from generations of the original foodies”, feeds the soul as well as the body in more than 100 recipes.

Popular food blogger Marisa McClellan takes you through all manner of food in jars, storing away the tastes of all seasons for later. Basics like jams and jellies are accompanied by pickles, chutneys, conserves, whole fruit, tomato sauces, salsas, marmalades, nut butters, seasonings, and more. Small batches make them easy projects for a canning novice to tackle, and the flavours of vanilla bean, sage, and pepper will keep more experienced jammers coming back for more. Sample some Apricot Jam and Rhubarb Syrup in the spring, and then try your hand at Blueberry Butter and Peach Salsa in the summer; Dilly Beans and Spicy Pickled Cauliflower ring in the fall, while Three-Citrus Marmalade and Cranberry Ketchup are the harbingers of winter.

Greenfeast by Nigel Slater

Nigel Slater’s Eat was one of his bestselling and most popular books ever. Now he has written GreenFeast, the green follow-up to Eat, packed full of short, doable and fast vegetable recipes that are usefully divided into In the frying pan, In the hand, On the hob and Puddings. The GreenFeast recipes are for those who want easy recipes for eating more vegetable dishes throughout the week and there will be suggestions for changing up each recipe, as well as lists and lists of quick ideas. GreenFeast is split into two volumes: GreenFeast: spring summer (May 2019) and GreenFeast: autumn winter (which will be published in September 2019). This is exactly the food everyone wants to eat now, in the style everyone loved in Eat, all told in Nigel’s warm and unique signature style.

Around the World in 80 Food Trucks by the Lonely Planet

Lonely Planet has taken to the streets to bring you 80 fast, fresh and mouthwatering recipes from the most exciting chefs on four wheels. From sea bass ceviche and Lebanese msakhan to old-fashioned American peach cake, discover how to cook some of the world’s most crowd-pleasing dishes, meet the chefs and hear the stories behind their passion projects.

Run by passionate foodies, food trucks have nailed the delicate balance of merging the methods and flavours inspired by personal travels and experiences with family recipes, immigrant influences and local ingredients all the while celebrating sustainable and seasonal local produce. 

Starting up and running a food truck is a vehicle for expression and experimentation, a way to serve food that’s both personal to the cooks and popular with the crowd. After all, food trucks park where the people are no booking or dress code required.

Inside Around the World in 80 Food Trucks, you’ll find out how to recreate chicken and waffles from Nashville; Indian sliders from Melbourne; paneer poutine from Berlin; spicy lamb samosas from Killary, mollete of roasted pork from Gijón; San Francisco langoustine rolls; and burgers, shrimp and breakfast sandwiches from Cape Town, Bogotá and beyond.

No Crumbs Left by Teri Turner

As millions of people know, one of the toughest things about completing the Whole30 is figuring out what to eat next, the other 335 days of the year. Teri Turner, creator of No Crumbs Left, has healthful and great tasting answers. Food is Teri’s love language, and her approach to getting people into the kitchen, rolling up their sleeves, and cooking is contagious. Don’t be afraid to fail: it’s just food,” is one of her mantras. Teri’s passion is evident on every page of her first cookbook, as she leads readers through a discovery of new flavours and spice combinations and teaches people to trust their cooking instincts. Teri’s recipes, most of which are gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, and Whole30 compliant, are what makes No Crumbs Left so unique. Simple and incredibly delicious dishes such as Pistachio Pesto Chicken Breast, Shrimp Pad Thai, and Spicy Pepperoncini Beef are on the dinner table quickly. Teri considers this book a love letter to her mother, and woven throughout are tips and favourite quotes to bring you right into her kitchen, where there is always an extra seat at the table.

Hunter Gather Cook by Nick Weston

Hunter Gather Cook aims to set you on a fulfilling, lifelong path of culinary adventures and food DIY, and show you how to embrace the lifestyle that surrounds the 21st-century hunter-gatherer. It will make wild food accessible to you, and take away any sense of trepidation at making your first brew, burger or carpaccio. And if you’re already a 21st-century hunter-gatherer, then it will help you to expand your culinary repertoire, taking your experimentation and enjoyment to the next level. 

While there’s no doubt the world is a very different place to how it was 10,000 years ago, some things have remained the same. We are still hunter-gatherers, just like our ancestors. 

Winter by Louise Franc

When the temperature cools down and the nights become longer, we tend to crave our favourite comfort foods – slow-cooked meats that fall off the bone, rich chowders and hearty stews, succulent roasts with all the trimmings, and fragrant and warming curries served with steamed rice. This is the time of year when we tend to skip the salads, smoothies, and lighter meals, and the art of winter cooking comes into its own. Winter: Warm Recipes for Cold Nights, is a stunning collection of innovative cold-weather recipes perfect for this time of year.

From simple and warming traditional comfort foods like classic French onion soup, slow-cooked beef stroganoff, chicken cacciatore, rich osso buco, and a moreish tuna pasta bake to impressive modern cold weather dishes including Asian-style caramel pork, Panang chicken curry, roasted pumpkin risotto with brown butter and sage, and creamy Calvados chicken, as well as a host of decadent desserts, think dulce de leche and chocolate peanut butter puddings, slow baked spiced quinces, chai-spiced slow-baked rice puddings, and winter-warming dried fruit compote. Winter has a recipe to cover every occasion. With 140 recipes included, designed to not only taste amazing but to warm you up too, Winter is a comprehensive volume on cold-weather cooking. This season now promises to be that much more delicious!

Enjoy!

The best books to help you care for your house plants

The seasons are changing. Here in Melbourne, Winter is well and truly knocking on our door. The mornings are a little crisper, the days seem shorter and the nights are getting nippy. It’s a time when we pull on our slippers, bring out the wooly blankets, salads take a back seat as we begin to cook slow roasted dinners and we all retreat inside. 

One thing that doesn’t change, however, is our love for the humble indoor plant (and their popularity is on the rise). Whether it is the benefits of fresher air, colour in the room or the joy of watching something grow, most households have a pot plant. It’s also the one thing people tend to be pretty grim at keeping alive. So we have rounded up some of the best titles on the market that all aim to help us look after our indoor gardens. 

How To Raise A Plant by Morgan Doane

Aimed at a new generation of indoor gardening enthusiasts, this book is a perfect guide for anyone keen to see their plant offspring thrive. Plants have found popularity in the small home, and are being proclaimed the new stars of Instagram. This attractive little book is ideal for the novice ‘plant parent’, providing tips on how to choose plants, and above all how to care for them and keep them thriving. Indoor-plant experts and Instagrammers Erin Harding and Morgan Doane bring the subject to life alongside their beautiful photographs of happy plants in the home.

The Little Book of House Plants by Emma Sibley

House plants are having a moment. Inexpensive to purchase, easy to care for and a statement in any space they inhabit, growing these plants is virtually foolproof. The Little Book of House Plants and Other Greenery is a source of green inspiration for small-space gardening, featuring a directory of 60 of the most popular varieties of foliage to own. From dramatic palms and tropical leafy wonders to beautiful ferns and flowering potted plants – this book covers everything you need to know about nurturing and growing your own. Each of the 60 plants is accompanied by luscious photography and an easy-to-follow breakdown of all the essential requirements for that variety. This includes details on size, growth and flowering, along with any extra tips on caring for that specific plant.

Wild at Home by Hilton Carter

As the owner of over 200 plants, Hilton feels strongly about the role of plants in one’s home – not just for the beauty they add, but for health benefits as well: ‘having plants in your home not only adds life, but changes the airflow throughout. It’s also a key design element when styling your place. For me, it wasn’t about just having greenery, but having the right variety of greenery. I like to see the different textures of foliage all grouped together. You take a fiddle leaf fig and sandwich it between a birds of paradise and a monstera and. yes!’ You will be armed with the know-how you need to care for your plants, where to place them, how to propagate, how to find the right pot, and much more, and most importantly, how to arrange them so that they look their best. Combine sizes and leaf shapes to stunning effect, grow your own succulents from leaf cuttings, create your own air plant display, and more.

Leaf Supply by Lauren Camilleri

Flowers are great – everyone loves receiving them. But inevitably they’re already on the way out the door (and into the trash) by the time they arrive. Plants, living, breathing, life sustaining plants are where it’s at! Authors Lauren and Sophia really want you to fall in love with indoor gardening and growing. They provide specific care instructions with each of the listed plants, ensuring you learn and grow as your plant grows. But more than a plant guide, Leaf Supply also gives styling advice on choosing the rights pots and making the most of your indoor greenery.

Decorating with Plants by Baylor Chapman

Whether it’s a statement-making fiddle-leaf fig or a tiny tabletop succulent, a houseplant instantly elevates the look of your home. But where to begin? In Decorating with Plants, Baylor Chapman walks readers through everything they need to know to bring houseplants into their home. First, there’s Plant Care 101: from how to assess light conditions to tricks for keeping your plants alive while on vacation, Chapman gives readers the simple, foundational info they need to ensure their plants will thrive. Then she introduces us to 28 of her favourites — specimens that are tough as nails but oh-so-stylish, from the eye-catching Rubber Tree to the delicate Cape Primrose. Finally, she guides readers through the home room by room: Place an aromatic plant like jasmine or gardenia to your entry to establish your home’s signature scent.” Add a proper sense of scale to your living room with a ceiling-grazing palm. Create a living centrepiece of jewel-toned succulents for a dining table arrangement that will last long after your dinner party. From air purification to pest control, there’s no limit to what houseplants can do for your home and Decorating with Plants is here to show you how to add them to spaces big and small with style.

Plant Parenting by Leslie Halleck

No matter what kind of plant fan you are, it’s easy to make more of your favourite plants. Plant Parenting is a beginner-friendly introduction to plant propagation. Leslie F. Halleck details the basic tools necessary, demystifies seed starting and saving, and shares easy-to-follow instructions for the most practical techniques for cutting, layering, dividing, and more. She also provides additional information on controlling pests and diseases and transplanting seedlings and cuttings. Charming, richly illustrated, and accessible, Plant Parenting is for anyone looking to make more of their favourite plants.

In Bloom by Clare Nolan

This one is for those of you that just love flowers a little more.

Being able to step out of the back door and pick a single stem for beside the bed or pull together a posy for a friend is a joy. In this beautifully designed book, brimming with inspirational photographs, Clare Nolan reveals her secrets for growing a bountiful harvest as well as styling spectacular homegrown displays that will fill your home with colour and the gorgeous scent of the garden year-round. She takes the mystique out of what to grow and guides you through the entire process – from choosing the plants to suit both your garden and home decor and laying out your cutting patch, to planning ahead so you get your perfect palette of colour, texture and shape to play with at the right time. A whole chapter on arranging will inspire you to create spectacular arrangements for your home without the need for complicated floristry techniques.

Enjoy!

The top 5 books to read when launching your side hustle

Once upon a time Booko was a side business. True story. 

What started as a way for Dan to search for professional development books has become a service that now operates in 23 countries around the world helping people everywhere remain clever as they shop for books online.

There are a ton of titles available that discuss the transition from side hustle to business and even more that aim to give you tips and tricks along the way. Our team is constantly reading business improvement books and has gathered their favourites to share with you. 

Let’s dive in…

The Multi Hyphen Method by Emma Gannon

The world of work is changing and how do you keep up? You have the ability to make money on your own terms, when and where you want – but where do you start? If you’ve been itching to convert your craft into a career, or your side-hustle into a start up, then The Multi-Hyphen Method is for you. In The Multi-Hyphen Method award-winning blogger / social media editor / podcast creator, Emma Gannon, teaches that it doesn’t matter if you’re a part-time PA with a blog, or a nurse who runs an online store in the evenings – whatever your ratio, whatever your mixture, we can all channel our own entrepreneurial spirit to live more fulfilled and financially healthy lives. The internet and our phones mean we can work wherever, whenever and allows us to design our own working lives. Forget the outdated stigma of being a jack of all trades, because having many strings to your bow is essential to get ahead in the modern working world. We all have the skills necessary to work less and create more, and The Multi-Hyphen Method is the source of inspiration you need to help you navigate your way towards your own definition of success.

Side Hustle by Chris Guillebeau

The author of the New York Times bestseller The $100 Startup shows you how to launch a profitable side hustle in just 27 days. For some people, the thought of quitting their day job to start their own business is exhilarating. For many others, the loss of a stable paycheck is terrifying. But what if we could easily create new income without giving up the security of a full-time job? Enter the side hustle, a mini-business that earns you extra money. With Chris Guillebeau’s step-by-step guide, you can go from idea to income in just 27 days. You’ll learn how to brainstorm, borrow, and steal to build an arsenal of great side hustle ideas, apply `Tinder for Side Hustle’ logic to pick the best idea at any time. You don’t need an MBA, marketing experience or big investors. With Chris as a guide, anyone can make more money, pursue a passion, and enjoy greater security all without quitting your day job.

Start with Why by Simon Sinek

There’s a naturally occurring pattern shared by the people and organisations that achieve the greatest long-term success. From Martin Luther King Jr. to Steve Jobs, from the pioneers of aviation to the founders of Southwest Airlines, the most inspiring leaders think, act, and communicate the exact same way -and it’s the complete opposite of everyone else. The common thread, according to Simon Sinek, is that they all start with why. This simple question has the power to inspire others to achieve extraordinary things. Any organisation can explain what it does; some can explain how; but very few can clearly articulate why. Why do we offer these particular products or services? Why do our customers choose us? Why do our employees stay (or leave)? Once you have those answers, teams get stronger, the mission clicks into place, and the path ahead becomes much clearer. Starting with why is the key to everything from putting a man on the moon to launching the iPod. Drawing on a wide range of fascinating examples, Sinek shows readers how to apply why to their culture, hiring decisions, product development, sales, marketing, and many other challenges. Some naturally think this way, but Sinek proves that anyone can learn how.

The working women’s handbook by Phoebe Lovatt

We just love this book. It’s the ultimate guide to job satisfaction, filled with practical advice on developing and driving a working life you love. Bursting with actionable tips, this book outlines an agenda for making and managing money, setting goals, and establishing success-oriented routines, with worksheets, exercises, and fool-proof “how-to” sections to help chart your course. From the lowdown on launching your own venture to a bullet-point checklist for an essential self-care regime, it will teach you to manage any dilemmas that crop up, and take the stress out of setting a budget. This no-nonsense manual comes packed with author Phoebe Lovatt’s personal insights from her own career as a successful freelance journalist, moderator, and founder of The WW Club, the leading digital resource and global community for working women worldwide. It also includes words of wisdom from various creatives and industry leaders, such as Teen Vogue editor Elaine Welteroth, WAH Nails founder Sharmadean Reid, The Gentlewoman’s Editor-in-Chief Penny Martin, and rising fashion designer Sandy Liang.Whether a first-time freelancer, budding businesswoman, or dedicated professional looking to enhance your prospects, The Working Woman’s Handbook is a go-to career and lifestyle guide for ambitious young women everywhere.

The Culture Code by Daniel Coyle

What do Pixar, Google and the San Antonio Spurs basketball team have in common? The answer is that they all owe their extraordinary success to their team-building skills. In The Culture Code, Daniel Coyle, New York Times bestselling author of The Talent Code, goes inside some of the most effective organisations in the world and reveals their secrets. He not only explains what makes such groups tick, but also identifies the key factors that can generate team cohesion in any walk of life. He examines the verbal and physical cues that bring people together. He determines specific strategies that encourage collaboration and build trust. And he offers cautionary tales of toxic cultures and advises how to reform them, above all demonstrating the extraordinary achievements that result when we know how to cooperate effectively. Combining cutting-edge science, on-the-ground insight and practical ideas for action, The Culture Code is a ground-breaking exploration of how the best groups operate that will change the way we think and work together. It’s truly brilliant…read it immediately.

Next week we’re going to share the best titles to help you with your Instagram channel. Join in the discussion and be sure to follow us on instagram and facebook too. 

Enjoy!