Monday, 14 April 2014

On Blogging, Being Real & Rad Communities

On the weekend I flew up to Sydney to be a part of the Kidspot Voices of 2014 Masterclass.

Gourmet Girlfriend has been listed in the TOP 30 Australian Blogs in the Food & Wellbeing category, alongside a whole lot of of incredible Australian talent-
A M A Z I N G. I am super excited & honoured to be alongside the other people in that list!
There is no doubt that these kinds of accolades are incredibly lovely.  To be noticed for all the hard work that goes in to publishing a blog regularly is really lovely. And conversely for the people who have missed out on the Top 100 after the excitement of nominations it is a really hard & sad time to miss out.

Many of my favourite Australian blogs have been recognised- either in the initial nominations, the Top 100, or the Hall of Fame.
It is  great way for people navigating the blog landscape in Australia to have a look around at the incredible talent out there.

You can head here for the Top 100.

And here for the Hall of Fame.

The Australian Blog landscape is filled with incredible talent and each year I am amazed at how much it is growing.  I really encourage you to take a look around at the blogs listed here.

On the weekend at the Masterclass there were 3 different panels talking about topics such as using Facebook, Sharing on Social Media & Creativity and Inspiration by panellists with great experience in the business.

Every time I attend one of these classes I am thankful I do. Without a doubt it reaffirms why  I do what I do.  I LOVE my little space here and feel ever so thankful to have built this community of rad peeps that I get to chat to on a regular basis.

I LOVE to meet with other bloggers at these events- old mates from years of being in blog world and all the fab new people involved. It really is ace to connect in real life.

Every time I attend one of these events I am also left feeling as if there is SOOOO much stuff I do not understand and a wave of overwhelming "Oh my gosh I have no idea what I am doing" floods over me & a sense of panic that my blog is just not good enough & schmick or professional enough.  I  look around at all the other amazing people and feel as if I could never be like them.

Then I sit back and remember that my blog is about me, about being real. I'm not really schmick or professional.  I'm wonky and not perfect.  I don't get the HTML stuff, I've tried but my eyes glaze over and my brain goes to mush.  But really it shouldn't and doesn't matter. Being true to me is what matters. Doing it my way is what matters.  Showing you guys a bit of me is what it is about. That is what makes all blogs so wonderful. So much difference, so much choice- all unique!

But what I hope I do get right is interacting with you guys- my readers.  My gorgeous and treasured GG community! I know this is what a lot of other bloggers value the most too. That is where my investment is. YOU.

So every time I start to worry about the super schmicky ways and how I am not doing very well at that, I try to remember that the community part of what is going in here at GG is alive and kicking & that is what is dearest to me.

That is and always has been what drives me.  It is about sharing my world with like minded people and creating a space where we can all hang out together learning ace stuff & being inspired by each other- just like I was on the weekend by others.

Thanks so much for your treasured involvement in the GG space. It means the world to me.

I hope your week is a wonderful one with love, laughter and lots of your fave peeps at your kitchen table.

What's for dinner at your place?


I think I might make this....I feel a bit whacked out today and in need of some super comfort style food. This fits the bill perfectly!
We went away recently and spent some time as a family in one of most favourite places on earth- South Gippsland.
We always go to the local Accredited Farmers market  to get some local goodness when we are there.

This time my eldest boy chose some local Venison to make a pie.
This is based on his recipe. GOSH it was so so good! And really easy- it just requires a long slow cook.
It can easily be changed to Beef (use Chuck or Gravy beef) which is what I am doing today along with some Guinness to add depth of flavour.
You could use a large Muffin tray and make individual ones if you like.


  • 1kg Gravy Beef, cut into large chunks and dredged in flour (this aids in thickening the sauce)
  • 4 carrots, chopped into cubes
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 can of Guinness beer
  • 1 bunch parsley, chopped finely
  • S & P
  • puff pastry
  • egg wash
In a heavy based pan gently fry the onion, carrot, bay leaves and garlic until translucent and fragrant.

Add the beef and allow to brown. Now add the can of guinness and the chopped parsley.

Season well and bring to the boil.

Reduce heat and simmer at the lowest temp possible for 3-4 hours (popping it into your slow cooker would be handy!).

Preheat oven to 180C.

Place the beef mix into a large ovenproof dish and cover with puff pastry.
Make a hole in the pastry to allow the steam to escape- (i find it is necessary for this to always be heart shaped-it's a kind of 'Made with love' stamp you know! ).

Brush with egg wash and place in oven for 30 minutes or until nicely brown.

Serve with mash & greens.

"In love we find out who we are,
in sorrow we abide.
Our strength's revealed by what we build
from the broken things inside.
But a day will come when you will know
which way you must choose to go...
to travel on and live alone
or turn yourself around
and try to get back home."


  1. I love that you made that list, so very well deserved. Hopefully I can be at the final awards night cheering you on. One of the highlights of last year's awards night was meeting you. Good luck Ruth, and enjoy!

  2. GourmetGirlfriend14 April 2014 at 12:07

    meeting you was a highlight for me too Peggy! thankyou so much for your kind words. xxxx

  3. Keep writing Ruth, love your words, music and recipes.
    Beef Burgundy for the bloke's birthday tonight, made with love (and brandy, port and red wine)

  4. Oh I so wish I could have been there on the weekend. Congrats on making the top 30 Ruth! xx

  5. I love that you aren't all "schmick" Ruth! I love that you are real, approachable & authentic. That's the kind of thing that will always draw me in. You deserve recognition because you have created a great space here- a space I love being part of xx

  6. I like your blog because it is real and I only read blogs like that,and thank you for the pie recipe Ruth!

  7. Well I love it here and always have. It's no surprise you're in the top list, Ruth. Schmick only gets them in, it's heartfelt, quality content that keeps em coming back for more. Your warmth, creativity and sense of fun shine through in everything you do. x


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