Hotly Spiced Food BlogHotly Spiced Food BlogLast week John and I were invited up to dinner in Noosa (30 minutes north) by Charlie Louie of  She and her family were enjoying a holiday up there after Christmas. Her husband Carl’s parents live up here and one of his brothers.

If you follow Charlie’s blog, you’ll know what a treat it was that I not only got to eat her food but I met Carl, Archie, Arabella and Alfie.  Don’t believe a word she says about them on her blog — they are all delightful.  I didn’t get to meet Rosie the dog but one day I hope I can give her a belly scratch.

An additional treat was having drinks with Claire from  Claire lives in Brisbane (an hour south of me) but she was visiting her folks who live just outside Noosa.  Claire is young, beautiful, talented and clever — you know, one of those people you’d love to hate but can’t because she’s got the best personality?  Yes, that’s Claire.  She and her husband had another commitment and couldn’t stay for dinner but I’m so glad we got to catch up.

Noosa Food and Wine FestivalNoosa is a world famous holiday destination and home of the Noosa International Food and Wine Show (May 16th-19th).  Noosa is wonderfully situated between the beach, the river, the hinterland and national parks and offers an amazing range of activities for young and old with unspoiled beaches, great fishing, unique shopping and adventure activities.

Dinner was amazing.  Imagine going on holidays with your family and staying in a beautiful apartment overlooking the beach and ocean and spending your time inside cooking for family and friends?  I thought it was nuts but I said yes in an instant.

Charlie and Carl made a roasted beef fillet and served it in a Massaman curry with roasted potatoes, snow peas and red chillies.  The aroma called everyone to the table, especially me.

The meat was perfectly cooked and red from edge to edge — remember they did this in a holiday apartment that supplies only the very basic cooking tools.  The curry was fragrant, spicy and the perfect complement to the lip-smackingly delicious beef.  The sauce was so good we all used bread to get every last drop.

I apologise that there are no photos of the event but this was a friendly dinner and we spent the time getting to know each other better.  Archie’s voice was gone – injured by too much practice (probably trying to attract the girls below) but we were treated to some of his recorded songs and he’s incredibly talented and definitely going places.

Arabella is tall, slender and beautiful with a lovely voice that I could listen to by the hour.  She’s recently finished high school and is on the cusp of living her life as an adult.  It’s great to see someone with that much promise deciding whether law is a good career or maybe psychology or maybe both.

Alfie helped me carry the pie I’d brought for dessert and he’s as cute as he can be.  I asked how it was to play Santa in the school Christmas program and he played down being the big hero.  He said he didn’t get to sing and I think that would have made his Santa experience much better.

Carl is tall, handsome and a gracious host.  He’s well traveled and has the best stories.  Together, the family offers all the raw materials Charlie needs for her daily blog posts about life in her Sydney kitchen and I couldn’t be happier that we’re friends.


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  1. says

    Thanks so much for your kind words – I thought your and John’s stories were the absolute best. You really should share some of them here on your great space. I can’t believe I didn’t take any photos! What was I thinking (I clearly wasn’t!) I took one of your pie and one of my potatoes in the roasting pan and one of the table setting and that was it. It was such a shame Claire couldn’t stay longer and weren’t you just dying to meet her Will! It was a wonderful evening and thanks so much for your pie and ice cream. I wish you could have stayed longer and I’m so sorry Archie wasn’t up to a performance – yes – those girls! He was in the pool with them yesterday and discovered they’re only 14! Time to get out of there! Thanks again for your kind words, Maureen and yes…I wish we lived closer xx

  2. says

    What a fun post! I love Charlie’s blog (I learned of it through one of your posts, I believe) and her writing is wonderful – her stories can be such a hoot! Sounds as if everyone had a wonderful time. Thanks for writing about it so we’re all included, too.
    john@kitchenriffs recently posted..Easy Homemade Butter

  3. says

    Maureen, I’m always saying Charlie’s kids are gorgeous, and she makes them sound out to be much more work than I’m sure they really are! 😉 Sounds like you all had a wonderful time!

  4. says

    How lovely! I only wish I could have come. There is nothing better than meals/dinner with friends. Thank you for sharing…what a nice way to end my weekend (and get ready for dinner!) I hope you have a wonderful week!
    Monet recently posted..Whole Wheat Pear Muffins

  5. says

    I am so jealous you and Charlie got to hang out, BUT seriously what a treat!!! I am so excited to here you had a lovely time:-) Happy New Year my friend, Hugs, Terra

  6. says

    How delightful that you could get together. So great that you Australian bloggers are able to hang out and get to know each other in person.
    From Charlie’s photos and writings, I knew she had the most wonderful kids and she is one proud Mama.

  7. says

    Wow! it is amazing that you and Charlie got to meet up :)
    I only met a few of my readers and enjoyed every minutes of it. Sounds you guys had a great time.
    I love how you described everyone Maureen :) reading your posts always feels like talking to a good friend

  8. says

    Oh Maureen, what a great experience, I always read Charlie posts and enjoy them…now you got to live one :) and meet all the family in person…
    Happy 2013 and have a great week ahead!

  9. says

    I am so envious of you being able to meet up with Charlie. That must have been a great evening together. The food sounded divine even if there are no photos for us to see. Happy New Year.

  10. says

    What a marvelous dinner party it must have been, and how I would have loved to be there, even as a fly on the wall (but more likely sitting beside you both enjoying a glass of wine). It’s absolutely lovely that you were able to spend a bit more time with Charlie, meet her family and hear the stories. Happy New Year, Maureen.
    Eva Taylor recently posted..Smoked Salmon Tartare in Endive Spoons

  11. says

    Sounds like a lovely time was had by all. Charlie certainly has done a great job raising those children and i always love the stories. The most rewarding part of blogging here in australia for me has been meeting all the wonderful like minded people that blog and finding they are even better in real life than they are on there blogs, and you are no exception. Happy New Year

  12. says

    I often feel so fortunate to live in Australia. It’s so beautiful. I’ve just been catching up on all of my reading. I’ve been to Noosa once before and it was fantastic. Great post, Maureen. Happy new year x

  13. says

    How lucky to get together with Charlie! Sounds like y’all had a fabulous time. I really am envious that I don’t live close to any blogger buddies. Will have to make a trip to Australia because apparently that’s where all the fun is!

    Coffee and Crumpets recently posted..Lemon Loaf Cake

    • says

      I love meeting food bloggers and I’m off to Brisbane tomorrow to meet some more at a meeting. THEN I’m going foodie shopping with another food lover. Life can’t get better than this.

    • says

      Thanks for visiting, Rose and love to meet you. Anyone who thinks a slice of good bread with lashings of butter can fix most anything needs to be a friend of mine. :)

  14. says

    You and Charlie have the best stories. Although there was no picture of the get-together, you write stories so well that it was very fun to imagine the scene as you described. It’s so nice that you two got to know each other even outside of blogging. I bet it was worth the travel and deepen a friendship!

    • says

      I wish I could say, “it was nothing,” but I was SO looking forward to meeting Charlie and I got to do that in Adelaide at the food blogger’s conference. She’s as special in person (maybe more!) than on her blog. It was a real treat to meet up again.

  15. says

    What a lovely way for you to start the year. I hate trying to cook in holiday houses, so Charlie must be sainted indeed! I’d much rather go out for meals!

    • says

      I said the same thing, Amanda. She cooked for guests nearly every night on her holiday. It was a pretty swish apartment but still — when I go on holidays I want to holiday. :)

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