Monthly Archives: August 2013

Let’s chat with Elk master Marnie

Elk has been in the Olive Home family for a few years now and is a much loved brand of our marnie elk head shotstaff and customers. The products have gone from strength to strength and continue to impress us each season.

The new season has just arrive, and It’s like Christmas for a 5 year old. We have had a quick chat to Marnie who is the master behind the Elk brand. She as talked about the inspiration for the new season and given us QLD’s some inside knowledge about the wonderful Melbourne.

Where did your inspiration come from for the SS13/14 collection? I took a photo along the Victorian coast of a sunset earlier in the year. The colours that reflected across the sky were brilliant, clear and so pretty. This photo was printed onto a silk scarf and formed the basis for our palette. You will see hints of these colours right throughout the range from the dusty blues and greens to the bright oranges and acid yellows.

Was it always a dream to become a fashion designer? Or was it something that you fell into? If you are a creative person you innately need to work in a creative environment – or have an outlet. For me the process was quite organic but the path felt natural. I am still driven and inspired by the people around me.

You work in such a fast paced creative industry, how do you motivate your self on a day to day basis? I am lucky to love what I do – that is the greatest motivation. Our growing team at Elk HQ has introduced many people with years of experience behind them at different brands. All comment on how unique Elk is. Much of this is down to the loyal clients we have – most of whom feel like they are a part of our family. This loyalty and closeness with our fans is another great source of inspiration.

Favourite thing to cook? I am going through a bit of Quinoa phase and love to make warm salads with it as the base.

Any chance we could have the recipe? Or is it top secret? Recipe – no such luck. Whatever you have in the fridge topped with creamy goats curd and lovely white balsamic is about as complex as it gets.

Next time we are in Melbourne we need to eat at, drink at and visit? Oh where to start! Let’s pretend you have 24 hours in Melbourne, as a North side girl here is what I would suggest:

Breakfast: South of Johnston for delicious eggs http://southofjohnston.com.au

Post Breakfast Shop: meander along Gertrude Street for independent designers, book shops and galleries

Lunch: Gorski and Jones in Smith Street for a big bowl of warm homemade pasta http://www.gorskiandjones.com

After lunch: a bit more shopping either along Smith Street, Johnston or Brunswick Street (all within waking distance of each other)

Pre Dinner Cocktail: Head into the city and pop into Siglo above The European for a lovely atmosphere and a special view of Spring Street (best in warmer weather)http://www.theeuropean.com.au/functions.html

Dinner: queue up at Mamasita for incredible Mexican (sit at the bar if you can) http://www.mamasita.com.au

Ice Cream: if you have any room left wander over the Spring Street Grocer http://www.springstgrocery.com.au for homemade salted caramel and chilli ice cream

The best holiday destination in Australia? Tasmania – without doubt. Anyone who has been there will know why – anyone who hasn’t been needs to go to find out…its so lovely.

Who inspires you? And why? Our suppliers mostly. We travel frequently to meet with them and its fascinating to see how and where they work. Most of them live in fairly poor countries and most have to deal with adversity, government corruption and logistical nightmares just to run a business. We are so lucky here and are blessed to be able to work with people like this – they keep us grounded.

What is your favourite city in the world? Melbourne!

Chocolate Pavlova

We have had lots of interest in the chocolate pavlova that was cooked for Sabine’s birthday yesterday. So here is the recipe, it’s easy, looks great and is a crowd pleaser.

  For The Pav

  • 6 large egg whites
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar (or red wine vinegar)
  • 2 flakes

For the Topping

  • 500 g cream
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 2 flakes

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C and line a baking tray with baking parchment.
  2. Beat the egg whites until satiny peaks form, and then beat in the sugar a spoonful at a time until the meringue is stiff and shiny. Sprinkle over the cocoa and vinegar, and the chopped chocolate. Then gently fold everything until the cocoa is thoroughly mixed in. Mound on to a baking sheet in a fat circle approximately 23cm / 9 inches in diameter, smoothing the sides and top. Place in the oven, then immediately turn the temperature down to 150°C and cook for about one to one and a quarter hours. When it’s ready it should look crisp around the edges and on the sides and be dry on top, but when you prod the centre you should feel the promise of squidginess beneath your fingers. Turn off the oven and open the door slightly, and let the chocolate meringue disc cool completely, I leave it in the oven overnight.
  3. When you’re ready to serve, invert on to a big, flat-bottomed plate. Whisk the cream till thick but still soft and pile it on top of the meringue, then scatter over the raspberries. break the flakes so that you get lovely chunks,  sprinkle over the top, letting some fall, as it will, on the plate’s rim.