Finally.....Perfect Picnic Weather......

FINALLY! My wish for perfect picnic weather came true.


We spent the day at Melbourne Zoo yesterday on a beautiful sunny Autumn Saturday, wandering around the animals, and in particular, the meerkats.

I'd purchased tickets for my two youngest niece and nephew to the "Up Close Encounter with the Meerkats" for their Christmas present. This involved heading into their cadge, having mealworm sprinkled on top of our laps and then the meerkats jumping on us to eat their food. It was brilliant. Well, maybe not the mealworms but the meerkats were so cuddly and soft.

By 12 o'clock our tummies were rumbling so we set up the picnic under a gorgeous tree, and munched on.......

Nibbles of salami, olives, cucumber and cherry tomatoes.

Roast chicken (marinated in thyme, lemon and white wine).

Green salad with a yummy french vinaigrette (my niece is a huge fan of vinaigrette and could eat it all on its own if you don't watch her), and a fresh baguette which we picked up from the zoo bakery.

Of course no picnic is complete without dessert, and anything other than a chocolate dessert in my niece and nephews eyes is a waste of time, so I made just a simple everyday chocolate cake from the

"At Home with Magnolia".

God I'm loving this cookbook.

I was quite disappointed when the cake came out of the oven as it looked like nothing (the recipe calls for no icing or cream, just to eat the cake on its own). I just assumed this would be one recipe that I wouldn't bother with again.

How wrong I was!

I loved this cake (and if you know me you know I'm not a big fan of chocolate cake). A nice buttery icing would have made it perfect, but the texture and flavour of the cake was divine. Definitely plan to make it again!

All in all, it was one perfect day. I loved every minute of it from the meerkats to the food to the company and even to the whines of "can we have an ice-cream"......perfect!