Monday, June 30, 2008

A Weekend of Chow and a Recipe

This past weekend was a divinely gastronomic one. It started on Friday night with a decadent modern asian meal accompanied by yummy wine at one of my favourite Canberran restaurants; the Chairman and Yip, in celebration of my first paycheck.

After dinner I bought a brand new teapot and restocked my supply of my new favourite tea: Stockholm blend (from the Tea Centre), and drank gallons all weekend. Aren't they both beautiful?

On Saturday, while I attempted the first chapter of my thesis, the boy sweetly made me a most delicious and visually appealing fruit salad:

On Sunday, after a long afternoon of antique and furniture shopping (which resulted in the purchase of a few more ice cream coloured pieces to match my teacups), we had a delicious afternoon tea at the markets of roasted chestnuts from the man in the little red van, my favorite Margarita pizza from the Italian deli, and fizzy elderflower cordial from the organic shop. A simply perfect combination.

The elderflower was so delicious that I bought a big (and expensive) bottle of concentrate and have been drinking it non-stop since. It's especially refreshing with sparkling mineral water and ice. The boy and I have been planning some kind of elderflower-watermelon cocktail concoction ...I'll let you know how that goes:

The only thing I actually cooked all weekend was my famous Japanese Fried Rice for Saturday night's supper:

This is the kind of fried rice that masterful Japanese chefs make at Teppanyaki joints and then throw at you. As a result, I'm not sure how much of it actually gets eaten but what does is usually beautifully garlicy, buttery and utterly tasty. I came up with this recipe after watching it made in front of me at Wasabi Teppanyaki in Dickson and reconstructed it somewhat from memory, but largely using my own genius and making my own improvements. I know fried rice isn't the most exciting or exotic of dishes, but trust me, this one's special. The first secret is to use LOTS of butter, and the second is to use the soaking water from the shitake mushrooms as stock. These give it a lovely depth of flavour, and nutty creamyness. This recipe is also cheap, easy and relatively nutritious (save for the butter). It is delicious on its own, or as a side to terriyaki chicken or salmon, if you're so inclined.


1 handful of sliced, dried shitake* mushrooms
1 cup Japanese rice
3 happy free range eggs
1 tablespoon of butter
1 medium sized onion, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, diced
250g bean curd/tofu*, sliced
1/4 cup Japanese soy sauce
1/4 cup mirin
1 tablespoon sake
1 teaspoon sugar
2 medium sized carrots, finely diced
two or so handfuls of frozen edamame beans* thawed
toasted sesame seeds, sliced green onion or pickled ginger, for garnish


1. First, cook your rice using your preferred method (as I use a rice cooker, I'm not going to impart any advice here). Once cooked, I like to stir through a little butter, but you don't have to.
2. Soak the shitake mushrooms in about 1 cup of boiling water for about 30 minutes or until soft.
3. While the rice is cooking, beat your three eggs together with a touch of salt and pepper. Heat some vegetable oil in a medium sized frying pan or wok (around 28cm) and pour in the eggs to make a thin omelette. I usually find this omelette to be so thin that it doesn't require flipping, so simply cook it till it looks set on top. Flip the omelette out onto a chopping board, roll it up, then slice into thin strips. Put aside
3. Melt the butter in your frypan or wok, then sautee the onions till transparent.
4. Add the garlic and tofu, fry till slightly golden
5. Add the soy sauce, mirin, sake and sugar, fry for one minute. I like to put the sauces in now so that they get soaked up by the tofu, but if you prefer you can put them in with the rice.
6. Add the rice, edamame, carrots, omelette shitake mushrooms and soaking liquid, and fry, tossing constantly for a few minutes, or until everything is heated through. Taste, and if you feel that it needs more flavour, add more soy sauce or mirin, and a touch more butter if you like.
7. Serve, garnished with the sesame seeds, sliced green onion or pickled ginger, if desired.

*These ingredients should all be easily found at an Asian supermarket. Edamame are Japanese soybeans, and are usually in the freezer section They come in big bags (much like frozen peas) either podded or still in their skins (and make delicious snacks on their own with salt and beer). My favourite brand of bean curd is Hhu Quijnh "Fresh Bean Curd Made Daily" - it's extra creamy on the inside but crispy on the outside, not too silky, not to firm and utterly delicious, but I've only ever seen it at "Lucky Price" in Erindale.

NB: You may have noticed that inbetween all the chowing, I've also been playing around with photos. I haven't been using my Holga (still haven't worked out how it works), but an excellent, and very fun online photo editing thingymajig called Picnik.

And 'cause you know how I love food-themed songs:

Gameboy/Gamegirl - Fruit Salad (Mp3)

Friday, June 27, 2008

Things that go bump in the night.

I think there's a ghost living in the top of my cupboard.

Here's a mix to help me decide whether this is a good thing or not...

*Links lead to a lepricorn sized pot of gold.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

So like a dream...isn't it?

Air France have a new EP out called No Way Down. It's pretty brilliant. Pitchfork Best New Music brilliant. They've been compared to the Avalanches, and rightly (and somewhat obviously) so. They have that whole dreamy, sample-y, retro summer feel, which, all though right now it's freezing and I'm a tad stressed and exhausted, does, when I close my eyes, conjour the memory of the warmth of the sun on my bare shoulders, the smell of suncream and frangipanis, and the taste of limeade.

Some of us here at Number One Millionaire are probably experiencing the exact sensation right now in Noosa, a fact of which I am immensly jelous. Similar of us are soon to be experiencing it again in Thailand, and you already know how I feel about that.

NB: I tried to find an image by a tallented artist which captured the pure warmth, joy and freedom evoked this band, but don't think anything can really top the EP's cover image (as above). Perfection.

Air France - Colapsing at your doorstep (Mp3)

Air France - No Excuses (Mp3)

In other news, I've been thinking, and have decided that it's high time I moved here:

I promise to invite you over for croissants.

{Speaking of which, I also promise to share a recipe or two with you soon. Just haven't been all that inspired recently. You understand, I'm sure}*.

*curvey parentheses are so much more glamorous than regular ones, don't you think?

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Stranded in the open sea

I know this post might come off a bit "dear diary", but, dear diary, I've been feeling glum. The new job is going well, but I can't stop thinking about how it's kinda fucked up that all this money budgeted for "Indigenous Australians" is actually going to fancy buildings and over-paid public servants in Canberra. I mean, you could feed an Aboriginal child well for a week with the money I make in one hour of sitting in a comfy chair in a warm office, researching stuff, typing stuff, drinking tea, chatting with co-workers, sneakly checking my facebook... I know I really shouldn't complain, and I guess my young, idealistic self is simply discovering the absurdity of bureaucracy, but still, it gets you down... It also kind of motivates me to go out into the world and do something at least a tiny bit tangible.

I've been trying to get started on my thesis again. Really, I have. But I've kind of forgotten what it's about and don't really know where to begin. And really, the last thing I feel like after a long day at the office is more research and more typing. The first thing I feel like is Arrested Development. I think I want to marry George Michael Bluth. I just love his little shirts and the way he calls his grandparents "Pop-pop" and "Gangy"...

My firefox keeps on doing that annoying thing where it opens a "Find" box whenever I strike the apostrophe key. Ugh.

In other, more uplifting (superficial) news, this job has meant that I have finally been able to buy my three favourite albums of the year so far:

Beach House's Devotion

The Dodos' Visiter

Fleet Foxes' Self Titled
(featuring beautiful artwork by Pieter Bruegel the Elder)

Fleet Foxes - Quiet Houses (Mp3)

Fleet Foxes - Meadowlarks (Mp3)

The last two arrived in the mail today from Amazon with the following personal message - from the lovely gentleman friend who did the ordering - on the front:
maybe now you don't have to buy a boy from korea?
(which was, in fact, a response to this blog post)

I can only wonder what the postie must have thought...

NB: for more fabulous work from The Dodos and Fleet Foxes, see this post.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Morning Mix

The Pillowig by Youn Joo Paek

This is the mix I've been waking up to lately, which, thanks to my shiny new job, has been a little earlier than ideal. In fact, prior to said job, mornings scarcely existed to me at all, so you can understand, friends, that I might need something extra special to make rolling out of bed bearable.

So this is my version of a strong cup of coffee, without the unpleasant aftertaste or mid-morn crash, and has become part of my rather sacred morning ritual. It may or may not have been produced by someone with whom I may or may not be in an intimate relationship of sorts, but I promise that I'm only posting it because I simply love it, and want to share it with you, my lovelies. May it impart a touch of magic to your mornings* too.

1. The Dixie Cups - Iko Iko

2. Ratatat - Wildcat
3. CocoRosie - Rainbow Warriors

4. Chromatics - I Want Your Love

5. Chicks on Speed- Wordy Rappinghood

6. Glass Candy - Miss Broadway
7. Belle and Sebastian - Your Cover's Blown

8. Hercules and Love Affair (feat. Antony) - Blind

9. Chromatics - Hands in the Dark

10. Mu - Destroying Human Nature

11. Cut Copy - Future

Tom Tomz - Micromix (Mega Upload - left click through to link, follow instructions).

*The Morning Mix is also advisable taken at any time of day.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Lettuce be lovers.


These pictures are pretty and so are you.



Oops, how did that get in there?

Till next time sweet loves,



Sunday, June 15, 2008

Vintage Finds

I couldn't resist sharing these adorable antique tea cups I bought from Down Memory Lane -- a Number One Millionaire Favorite -- yesterday. Aren't they just darling?

Kanako Sasaki, and a lament for the end of youth.

Tomorrow I enter the world of full time work. Tomorrow my six months of dreamy, goverment funded unemployment ends. And, to be honest, I'm a touch nervous. Plus, I'm just downright lazy and the thought of having to get up at 7:30am every morning makes me feel a little weepy. On top of all of that, the thought of somehow having to shuffle a 4000 word essay, and after that the first chapter of my thesis, around full time work while my dearest and nearest (including my two fellow millionaires) are off in Thailand, Singapore and Malaysia shopping at Top Shop and visiting my beloved Chatuchak market without me almost makes me wail.

This job is an amazing oppurtunity (not to mention the pay - much of which I've already spent pre-emptively) and one which I'm still pinching myself at having recieved. I'm just not sure if I'm ready for the real world yet, you know? I still feel like such a little girl. A lazy little girl, who enjoys sleeping in, daytime television and baking whenever she feels like it.

In an effort to procrastinate from said 4000 word essay, and to soothe my worrysome soul, I thought I would share some gorgeous images from Japanese photographer Kanako Sasaki. His works kind of remind me of Haruki Murakami's novels (if you haven't read any of them, you should. Start with The Wind Up Bird Chronical or Kafka on the Shore, or if you're pushed for time, his short stories), not because they're both Japanese, but because of something of the quiet mystery, and often almost surreal quality of these photographs, a quality which is also captured beautifully in Murakami's prose.

Yellow Leotard from the Wanderlust series

Morning from the Wanderlust Series

Angela, Wein, Austrial from the World of Groping Series

Ieva, Riga, Latvia from the World of Groping Series

Afternoon # 28 from the Test Height Size Series

Afternoon # 35 from the Test Height Size Series


Friday, June 13, 2008

Tonight, my mood is black

Picture found at this street art site.

I'll be honest with you dearest readers, i'm not very happy tonight. I'm in a very dark mood after a nasty shift at work and my thoughts are being clouded by some not so great personal stuff.

A few years ago when 'black' moods were common, i used to find salvation in Post Secret. Though maybe a little cliched now, Post Secret is a blog where people send decorated post cards revealing a secret they've been keeping which they've told no one else. I used to find myself identifying with different secrets and i used the site to shift the focus of my egomaniacal thinking. I find the honesty of the secrets very refreshing, as when you find something you identify with, for a few moments you know that you are completely understood, even if by someone you'll never meet. It's a very special thing to have when feeling utterly alone.

Post Secret was also a source of hope and inspiration for me. The joy that is conveyed through some of the post cards is inspiring, fuel used to help me strive towards achieving the same degree of happiness.

Tonight, for whatever reason, i found some of my favourite secrets that i'd saved for a rainy day. I hope you enjoy them and if you're in a dark and stormy place, take solace in the fact that there are lots of us out in boats battling the same storm, the clouds are just too thick for us to see each other.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Wild, white horses. They will take me away.

Now to reclaim a little of the street cred i let gurgle down the drain from my last post...

This is an amazing cover by Radiohead of 'The Rip', one of my favourite songs from what is currently my favourite album of the year, 'Third' by Portishead.

I feel 'The Rip' has qualities that are similar to aspects of Radiohead, maybe that's why i love it so much. What do you all think?

And just to ensure I've redeemed myself enough, this remix of 'Nude' by Radiohead will turn your brain to mush. It's incredible...

Thanks IGIF for the heads up.

The Rip- Portishead.

Big Ideas (don't get any) from James Houston on Vimeo.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Blair/Chuck - TOXIC (Gossip Girl)

A montage consisting exclusively of interactions between Blair and Chuck set to Toxic by Brittney Spears equates to my best internet find of the month.

Enjoy Gossip Girl fans.


Sunday, June 8, 2008

Maga fun

Some tasty magazine tibits for all those money poor lovers of the magazine out there.

Now, lets get something straight, I really love magazines. They are shiny, they have pretty pictures, there are words and sometimes they come with free stuff. What's not to love? Most unfortunately there is a sharp thorn in my rose of love for magazines and that thorn's name is Money. Horrible stuff, gives you herpes. But, lo and lets not forget, behold, there is an alternative. What is it you cry? You scream and beg to know. Well dear ones, it is the online magazine. Admittedly not as cool as its close relative the zine, but nonetheless it has many merits (one of them being that I can link to them on this here blog).

Now, I am going to be honest with you all because I feel we are becoming closer, becoming friends even, and one should never lie to friends (unless of course it's absolutely neccessary. For example, you ruined your friend's dress they oh so kindly lent you by somehow covering it in black, tar-like marks, possibly caused from rolling around on the road...). Honest moment: I may have taken all these links from other blogs, ek. Therefore, some of you may actually already be familiar with these magazines, but if not, enjoy!

Sesame A lovely Australian mag with some beautiful photo shoots and pretty interesting articles. I particularly enjoyed the spread about people's favourite items of clothing/accessories and what it means to them. Hasn't been updated recently, but definately worth a look.

prim. A new magazine, only on its second issue, but I love it. Has style profiles of 'normal' people, cute articles on music as well as fashion. I also found from Style Bubble (where I discovered this mag) that the editor is only 14! Man, I have to accomplish some shit. Pronto.

Panda Head Crazy but cool layout. Took me a while to work out how to navagate the mag, but I'm pretty sure that has a lot to do with me and my retardness...

Also, I just had an idea. If anyone has any favourite magazines they wish to share just pop a link into the comments and we can all pass on the magazine love.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

The Sugar Oaks

In very exciting news, we at Number One Millionaire have received our first ever promo e-mail from a real band, who, though they didn't explicitly say it, obviously want us to post some of their material on our fabulous blog. It's called free advertising. Blogs are, like, so influential now, you know. I'm sure that in a few months when we are, like, the next Hipster Runnoff and my inbox is constantly clogged with e-mails from "Upcoming Bandz" I'll rue this day. But since none of that has happened yet, I am somewhat excited, and I'll admit it, a little bit flattered too.

Now, while I don't really dig these "Sugar Oaks", as they like to call themselves, I thought I'd post some of their stuff anyway, to mark what is a Number One Millionaire landmark of sorts.
Also, I just wanna send the message out that if you are in a band, or make art, or write poetry, or take photos, or have noticed an upcoming youth craze that you want us to post, just e-mail one of us and we might just pop your stuff up. We do love e-mails.

So anyway, The Sugar Oaks are from Orlando, Florida, and describe their sound as "Indie R&B". They've supported such acts as Elf Power and Of Montreal and have a new single called No One Can Love You Like Me (oooh, original!) coming out on the 20th of June. Apparently it will have hand silk screenprinted covers (!). Actually, that fact alone has nearly won me over. I mean, in these days of digital music downloading, who actually buys albums for any reason other than fancy artwork anyway? I know I don't.

Now for a brief semiotic analysis of the band's press photo (click for a larger view):

They're obviously trying to communicate something here about both the band's 'brand' and their musical style. By sitting in long, green grass they're telling us "we like to make lush, organic sounding indie-music, and don't take ourselves too seriously. We hang out and have fun, semi-hippie times sometimes, just like you guys, you know? We're also really good friends, and care a lot about nature." The black background, however, suggests "but we're not all about sunshine and butterflies either, we're a bit dark and moodly sometimes. Our lyrics are deep and penetrative. They're about real, important, existential issues. Like lesbian love, or when you realise that no one can love your gf like you can love your gf."

They've also tried to express that the guy in the middle is the lead singer by making him hold stuff. I mean, he's holding both a cup of tea and a dog which expresses both his down to earth wholesome fun-ness, and the fact that he wears the pants. No one else is holding anything! I bet he's a bit of a control freak and the band all secretly hate him. The two guys to his right are even laughing about him right now: "Oh, fuckin' Jeff, why does he always get to do all the holdin'?" they're saying "we wanna hold stuff too!". There is also a token good looking bearded but not too beareded guy (which every indie band needs) who may or may not be on drugs, and a hot but wholesome looking girl who probably only plays the tambourine, or other quirkly "indie" instruments like the glockenspiel or the viola.

On second thoughts, my detective skills have just detected that on the website the line up only mentions the four guys. So maybe she isn't in the band at all. Maybe she's just the manager, or stylist, or manager's stylist's girlfriend and they just put her in the photo for aesthetic, semiotic reasons, which is why she looks just a tiny bit awkward. Facinating...

Unfortunately I've been having issues with my file hosting bandwidth...but if you still wanna hear their stuff (after I've spoken so highly of them), then I'm sure a quick hype machine search will bear fruitful results.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008


So you're out and about in the busy metropolis that is where you live (unfortunately for me that is Canberra). You're about to meet a friend for some type of caffeinated beverage when you are suddenly stopped dead in your tracks. Crossing the road directly in front of you is a guy that is so ugly he somehow manages to move last night's chicken lasagna from your stomach to your mouth in one terrifying lurch. Then it hits you, that guy totally looks like an old lesbian.

If you've had an experience like this before, you're obviously not alone. My brilliant house-mate Nathan came across the million dollar blog find, 'Men who look like old lesbians'. But as Nathan informs me, they're probably not that ugly, they've just never really been loved. So there you have it, if you're not loved you're going to end up looking like an old, ugly, lesbian.

Since this post opens a whole case of un-P.C whoop ass, i feel like i should probably let you all know that i'm usually a quite an unprejudiced person. No, that's a lie. I think these guys are douche-bags*.

* I couln't live with myself leaving the last word of my post as the most vile 'C' word of the english language. Yes, i am soft.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Lazy Line Painter Jaimie.

It's Sunday and i'm far too busy living and reorganising aspects of my life to entertain you my charming winter loves.

Though quickly, i can tell you that i'm very happy,

i'm performing spectacularly at work,

and Belle and Sebastian have made a resurgence on my stereo (big time),

Regular postings will commence once my room is back in working order (aka, has stopped smelling like off mushroom soup).

Till then, stay warm gorgeous ones. Happy first day of winter (for yesterday)!

Belle & Sebastian- Sleep the Clock Around

Andrew Bird- Scythian Empire

Deer Tick- Dirty Dishes

The Teenagers- Homecoming

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Studious and moodious

Yes, I like to make up words. Please don't try to correct me, it's kind of a hobbious.

Art history, ah, what a tumultous relationship I have with thee. Sometimes I love thee, sometimes loath. Sometimes I just like to speak of ye in ol' timey language. Oh woe. Is me.
As I am currently studying for a visual test I thought I would share a couple of my favourite images from my Australian Art course and obviously waste some time.

Joy Hester, Boy with bird, 1957, watercolour

George Baldessin, Personage with striped dress, 1968, etching

I realise now seeing these two images together that they are vaguely similar. This probably tells me something about my current mood, maybe that I'm hot for bung eyes? And now I have totally creeped myself out.

Like a moth she moves to the red light...

I wanna climb up here;
from Yann Orhan's Nos vies invisibles series

Pull these out of my rucksack and eat them;

And listen to this;

M83 - Skin of the Night

Then later, when it comes out, I really wanna see this:

These four diversions combined, plus a bubble bath, all in one day would be, like, the best day. The best day ever.