From the long drive in from Townsville, you begin to realise that this place is going to be very different to what might have been expected. The earth is red and dry and the sun burns my skin through the car window even though it is winter. The landscape around you says one thing: this is North Queensland.
“It’s not about flowers” my mum said to my brother; “It’s about food and family”. And after my first time visiting the Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers (TCOF) I can say, that about sums it up!
It was a fairly spontaneous decision to visit Toowoomba for their annual Carnival of Flowers, but it was also a perfect excuse to catch up with family. My brother and I made the 2 hour trip from Brisbane to meet Mum, who had made a 4 hour journey from New South Wales, and we caught up among the food tents within the Ergon Energy Food & Wine Festival held in Queens Park. It is easy to forget just how close Brisbane is to Toowoomba, making it a perfect place for a weekend away.
Sticky date pudding reminds me of when I was a kid. I’m not sure if mum made it often or if I just remember it that way because we would request it for pretty much every special occasion. We were a family that always had dessert, and I loved that. Sticky date pudding is rich, sweet and warming. It is exactly what a dessert is meant to be.
There are a few foods that I kind of just gave up on when I realised it was dairy that was making me so sick. Caramel was one of those foods. Sweet, creamy, sticky caramel. Recently I have decided that I don’t want to be restricted by what I cannot eat. I really should be looking for creative ways to eat what I want! Something that I found myself really wanting to eat, was a sticky date pudding.
I don’t know why I haven’t yet written about Rome. Maybe I just needed some time to decompress, to understand how important my time there was, and to separate the experience within this eternal city from the rest of my trip. Whatever the reason, almost 2 years later, I am excited to finally share my experience!