moroccan chickpea pilaf with feta and falafels

Moroccan Chickpea Piliaf with Feta and Falafels via @houseofturtleI’m not great at following recipes. I’m not sure if this is because I’m too lazy to read them properly or if it’s because I tend to be a little bit experimental in the kitchen. Let’s go with the later.

Tonight, I made this very simple Moroccan style Chickpea Pilaf with Feta and Falafels. I got the inspiration from‘s recipe for Chickpea Pilaf with Haloumi and of course, gave it my own twist. And, it was great. It had lots of flavour and textures, as well as being quite light and fresh.

Note, I generally cook for one. So, this is way too much food for me. However, I intend to use the rice mixture in other dishes throughout the week (not too long though as rice can go bad)… such as roasted stuffed capsicums and tuna cakes.


  • 2 cups of Basmati Rice
    (alternatively, you could use Brown Rice, Quinoa or Cous Cous)
  • 2 cups of Chicken or Vegetable Stock (optional, can use water)
  • 1 tablespoon of Olive Oil
  • 2 medium to large Brown Onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup of Shredded Almonds
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of Moroccan Seasoning
  • 400gm can of Chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 bunch of Coriander, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup of Pistachios, roughly chopped
  • Pre-made Falafels, preferably organic – prepare as per instructions
  • Marinated Feta

What to do

  • Cook the rice via your preferred method. For this, I used a rice cooker and stock instead of water.
  • Heat the Olive Oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook the Onion (stir often) for 10 minutes or until light golden. Stir in the Moroccan Seasoning and Shredded Almonds and cook for another 1 minute.
  • Add the cooked Rice and Chickpeas. Stir till the ingredients are mixed through (you want the colour of the Onions and Seasoning to coat the rice).
  • Now, you can either add all the Coriander and Pistachios at this stage, or if you are making a smaller batch like I was, add your desired serving to a bowl and add Coriander and Pistachios to taste.
  • Top with Falafels and Marinated Feta.
  • I also added a few spoons of the Oil from the Feta to add some moistness to the Falafels and a little extra kick. Alternatively, you could squeeze some Lemon on top.
  • Finally, take a picture, share on Instagram and dive in!

Let me know how you go or if you used your own variation.

Turtle xox

Image by House of Turtle


the well nest paleo coconut flour blueberry muffins

The Well Nest Paleo Coconut Flour Blueberry Muffins via @houseofturtle

I’m not technically working at the moment (just a bit of freelance/ consulting work and looking for more!) and have way too much time on my hands. So, I’ve been taking advantage of this time at home by whipping up lots of delicious and healthy treats in the kitchen.

Whilst I’m not strictly healthy or organic all the time, when I cook, I generally ‘try’ to use fresh, quality, organic ingredients and keep the nasties at a minimum (to offset the damage I do when I’m out).

My friend Valeria Ramirez, over at The Well Nest, often inspires me with her healthy lifestyle posts and recently shared this delicious muffin recipe, so I thought I’d give it a go. Not only are they super healthy (due to the use of coconut flour which is heat stable and nasty-free), they’re delicious!

Note, I’ve haven’t baked anything for about 20 years! So, when I made mine, I forgot to do a few things, which to be honest, wasn’t a disaster. I forgot to buy shredded coconut, so I added a little extra coconut flour and some slivered almonds instead. I also used a whole 165 ml tin of coconut milk, instead of the 4 tbs, which probably made up for the fact that forgot to put in the coconut oil! Next time, I’ll try to read the recipe properly, but I think I’ll add a little extra honey for sweetness.


  • 1/2 cup of Coconut Flour
  • 1/4 cup Shredded Coconut
  • 5 tablespoons of Coconut Oil
  • 6 Organic Eggs
  • 4 tablespoons of Coconut Milk (or dairy)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon Himalayan Rock Salt
  • 2 tablespoons Raw Honey
  • 1/2 cup of Blueberries

What to do

  • Combine wet and dry ingredients in separate bowls.
  • Mix together wet and dry ingredients.
  • Fold in berries.
  • Pour the batter into muffin pan (makes about 12)
  • Bake at 200 degrees C for 10-20 minutes – keep an eye on them so that they don’t brown too quickly.

Turtle xox

Recipe from The Well Nest Blog
Image by House of Turtle

make your own delicious yoghurt

I got my tonsils out a few days ago… And well, let’s just say it doesn’t tickle… And recovery time is slow and a bit arduous. As for food, well the days of ice cream and jelly are apparently over, with the doctors encouraging you to eat normally, which for the most part I have been.

That said, soft food is still a winner. But, as someone who is not a massive fan of ice cream (don’t look so shocked) I decided to try natural yoghurt. Problem is it can be a bit tart.

So to make it interesting I decided to mix in some Bonne Maman jam to sweeten it. The result… a delicious yoghurt too good not to share with you all. I used the Raspberry flavour, but I imagine any of the other flavours are just as good. Give it a try. You’ll love it!



Turtle xox

Images by House of Turtle

instagram recap: november/ december 2011

Maidenlove shoes at SO:ME Space launchMaidenlove shoes at SO:ME Space launch at South Melbourne Market

WIndow display at The Works, HawthornWindow display at The Works, Hawthorn

Every little princess' Christmas dreamEvery little princess’ Christmas dream at Petit Et Grand, Hawthorn

Circular Quay, SydneyCircular Quay, Sydney

Christmas Day at Donovans, St KildaChristmas lunch at Donovans, St Kilda

Gift from Xocolat, Mailing Rd, CanterburyChocolate goodness from Xocolat, Mailing Road, Canterbury

Sara Phillips gum notesSara Phillips gum notes at Hokey Curator, Hawthorn

Turtle xox

Images by House of Turtle

H-O-T Parties: Mr Jones Soiree

An enchanting ballerina danced to the fluid sounds of Tchaikovsky
Back in July I had the privilege of being invited to Mr Jones (of Porgie & Mr Jones fame) birthday soiree. 
It was the party to top all parties with decadent delicacies, delicious drinks, topless waiters, enchanting ballerinas, talented opera singers and more. 
Catering and performances were magically put together by Bright Young Things. Check them out for your next function or for the upcoming Spring Racing Carnival.

Turtle xox 

On the Move: Cafe Fez – Myrtleford

After a recent trip to Hotham my friend and I stumbled upon a cute little cafe in Myrtleford, called Cafe Fez. We fell in love with the decor and this Moroccan salt and pepper container.

The best part, you can buy them too, as Cafe Fez is on the same lot as Red Ramia Trading who sell Middle Eastern imports. Well worth the stop if you’re heading back from the snow.

145 Great Alpine Rd, Myrtleford
03 5751 1155
Open 7 days

Be sure to try the haloumi and falafels… So fresh and yum!

Turtle xox

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

J’Adore Midori

Make a statement this summer with Midori… Adore Midori that is.

Adore Midori is a fantastic new destination for fashionable ladies to find out what’s hot, discover tasty cocktails and the best parties to drink them at.

Eight of Australia’s hottest bloggers (including yours truly) feature each month in the Midori Adores section – showing you all that is fun, fresh and fabulous.

November’s top ten includes your chance to win Stereosonic tickets, how to wear great investment pieces, and my personal favourite, the hottest guys of Summer. H-O-T!

With competitions run throughout the day on Twitter and Facebook, Adore Midori is one to follow immediately. Show your support for us bloggers too and be sure to comment on our posts.

Check it out, can’t wait to hear your thoughts!

Turtle xox

Peach, melon and grapefruit delight

Arthur Galan dress and jacket, Samantha Willis songbird necklace in coral, L’Oreal Paris Nutrisummer, Ashbury Day Tripper shades in red, Sportsgirl striped cotton scarf, Trove Tkees sandles in foundations – beach bum, Mimco Natura clutch, Country Road trilby, Mimco Lucy tote, Mimco Poppy Love brooch, Annick Goutal Eau d’Hadrien

Spring has sprung… And with it comes warmer days, lighter dressing and outdoor socialising. That means, it’s time to update your wardrobe… and your winter habits.

Here’s some essential tips for Spring:
1. Move away from the black! Whilst we love it, it starts to look a bit heavy at this time of year. Update your wardrobe with oranges and peaches – the ‘It’ colour of the season. And, if you must wear black (like me) – pick some key pieces and mix them up
2. Make sure you wear SPF everyday and carry a hat and sunnies with you at all times. Be smart, opt for fake tan instead of a real one
3. Ditch the red wine. If you’re anything like me, this is also hayfever season. The histamines in wine are only going to make that worse. Order a cocktail instead. I love Japanese Slippers – which is made from equal parts Midori, lemon juice and Triple Sec. Mix them together with some ice in a cocktail shaker. Shake shake shake – and pour into a cocktail glass. Yum!
4. Update your scent – opt for something light and fresh. Try something with citrus notes, like Annick Goutal Eau d’Hadrien which is made up of Sicilian lemon, citron, grapefruit and cypress
5. Finally, get out and about – the sun is shining, the air is crisp… Enjoy!

Turtle xox

Want to win tickets to the exclusive Blackberry Curve launch tonight in Melbourne? Thanks to Midori, I have two tickets to this exciting event at Carousel, Albert Park Lake at 7pm. To enter, become a fan of the House of Turtle fan page on Facebook and then comment and tell me what you like to mix Midori with! The competition will close at 3.30pm EST – then the winner will be drawn from a hat. Make sure you are free to attend the event tonight! There are two tickets for ONE winner.

Hello smashed avocado!!



Three things you should know about me…

1. I love avocados

2. I love eggs

3. I love mushrooms

Three things you should know about Porgie and Mr Jones

1. They make the best smashed avocados with mushrooms and the option to have it with poached eggs

2. They have a new chef named Daniel Shelbert

3. They are finally opening for dinner every Friday and Saturday from the 5 June.

This place is so cute, and well worth checking out – the waiters and waitresses are hot, the coffee is amazing and it’s always buzzing. Ok, so that’s another three things, but I do love it.

Check out Porgie and Mr Jones for yourself:

291 Auburn Road, Hawthorn 3122, Ph: 03 9882 2955

Turtle xox