About Me

Hello Hello,

WELCOME to TIPSY KITCHEN!

I am Marina. Thank you for checking out my personal food blog. 
 
The name for the blog, Tipsy Kitchen, came about from the simple fact that I love my wine, especially when I cook. There’s a phrase: “I love cooking with wine. And sometimes I add it to food too”, which describes me perfectly. Great food, wine, my hubby and few good friends equals perfect night for me!  Cheers!!
 

WHAT CAN YOU EXPECT FROM MY BLOG

 
Nothing beats home-smoked bacon!
I don’t claim to be a Masterchef or nutrition coach, although I do take nutrition quite seriously. I generally eat quite well, but refuse to fall fully into any of the extremes of diets: Keto, Paleo, Low Carb etc.  Everything in moderation. So I don’t take responsibility if you put on weight by over-indulging on some of my meals! 
I am into hearty home cooked meals, some more intricate than others, helped, of course, by couple of glasses of good wine! I have a small kitchen and no super fancy equipment i.g thermomix (no space for it really), I compensate by having ridiculous amount of spices and sauces! So if you have an oven, slow cooker or pressure cooker, and bbq, (smoker would help too, but not essential :))  – you can cook what I cook.
 
With my background from Russia (see below) I don’t like food waste, and I believe in using all parts of the animal, “nose to tail”, not just premium cuts. And often they are (like livers) are most nutrient dense and super delicious. 
 
I try to use ingredients that are readily available. Ok, maybe not from your local Coles, but definitely from the Asian grocer, local butcher or fishmonger.
 
I do love budget meals to feed the family healthy food without breaking a bank and I will also review pre-cooked supermarket meals (OK , I do broken 12 h shifts often, so just have to, in order to keep my sanity!).  
 
I will have few posts on quick, easy and healthy food prep for your ready meals to keep handy in the freezer.
 
And of course I love eating out and exploring ever expanding Melbourne food scene, so you can count on me to leave a review.
 
All photos and videos are created by me and Evan.  All recipes are either mine or I will give credit to the author. Please feel free to comment, like, share and follow me on Instagram.
 
If I mention the product or brand – I really love it and want to share it with you regardless if it was sponsored or not. I will never endorse something I don’t like and wouldn’t use myself. 

A LITTLE ON MY BACKGROUND

Russian Caviar
Originally I come from Vladivostok, town in the Far East of Russia, and I have been living Down Under in Melbourne  for over 16 years now. My mum was a great cook and I have learned my skills from her since the early age.
Living in the major fishing port, Vladivostok, I was very spoiled growing up with the abundance of amazing fresh (or snap frozen if it’s winter!), wild caught seafood, all kinds of fish and shellfish imaginable. Even now there are hardly any fish farms. Being cheap and available extended to the whole fish such as salmon, so I also have learned how to scale and gut the fish, remove caviar membranes, “milk it”- remove caviar pearls from it’s membrane, and marinate it. Eating red caviar by the spoons with just buttered piece of bread (or blini if mum felt fancy) for breakfast was a regular occurrence in our house. I still absolutely love all kind of seafood.
THIS is the Crab!
 
However good meat cuts such as steaks was either not available or way too expensive, so I grew up with my mum using cheaper cuts of meat that took longer to cook, minced meat, chicken and a lot of offals. It never crossed my mind that there’s anything wrong with eating chicken hearts or livers, and don’t start me on salmon sperm sacks (soooo delicious panfried!!!). And Russian cuisine is pretty much it – cheaper cuts of meat, heaps of dishes using  minced meat, a lot of vegetables, pickled everything and seafood.
 
Having come to Australia, I have realised what a food novice I was. For example I have tried grilled lamb for the first time over here (in Russia, we could only have mutton) as well as proper steak, kangaroo (obviously), and duck (you could get a goose if you lucky, but mum never bothered).  I have not tried other cuisine from bad Chinese (sweet and sour pork was as good as it gets I thought), and I definitely didn’t drink wine!  But because I LOVE experiencing and learning new things, didn’t take long for me to “acclimatise”.  I have always loved cooking so if I liked something, I tried to recreate it myself!  
 

MY FAMILY

French Alps on our honeymoon
My beautiful supportive husband Evan, who is the biggest motivator for me and our pussycat Kiska, who loves overseeing our garden and pretty much rules the household!! We have met 7 years ago at the cafe where I was working extra shifts cooking crepes and scrambled eggs in between airline shifts, which were far in between, and I never looked back! 
 
I love my two wonderful nieces and my extended family from Evan’s side. 
She takes after her mommy!!
 
My cool friends, with some of whom we have been friends for over 10-15 years, have always been my shoulder to cry, drinking buddies and a my culinary testers, they are my famiy too! I can’t imagine my life without them and Evan now.  I am a lucky gurrl!!
 
Evan and I live in Bayside by the water, which I love, and both of us are foodies and we live to travel. 
 

 

 

 

 

VERY QUICK BRUSH ON MY “RESUME”

So you know me a little more:
I have Bachelor of Arts in History and English.

  • 3 years working in a military and navy museum in Vladivostok as a researcher and interpreter.
  • 6 years all together across three airlines as cabin crew/cabin manager – skies and travel are my other two passions after food.
  • 2 years – sales BDM for a training organisation. 
  • 6 months – running own food business – Pelmeni Kitchen, Russian Dumplings. Yep I did give it a go!! A bit more on it below.
  • 2 years as travel agent at Flight Centre. Never again!
  • And close to 3 years now as a tram driver at Yarra Trams driving four tram classes including iconic W (in a pic) and the newest E class, and am pretty proud of it!
So I host this blog while working full time as a shift worker, so I apologise in advance if I take time responding to your questions or comments. 

 

TRAVEL

Fish Head Curry in Singapore
Ok, I was a flight attendant for a reason – I love to travel and experience new places. I often take local cooking classes to teach me new tricks. Travel for me equals eating local food – street stalls, markets, – love it.  I just get fascinated by different cuisines and flavours!  I ate my way around the world quite extensively but there’s still so much more to cover!! And I do believe travel shapes us and gives us different perspective, let along shaping our taste buds and challenging our food habits. And I will eat EVERYTHING. Often I choked on few things I have put in my mouth, but nevertheless, I will at least give it a try. Apart from Alpaca in Peru… couldn’t do it, they were TOOOO cute to eat!!
 

PELMENI KITCHEN

 And Finally, Pelmeni Kitchen. This used to be my food business – I was trading hand made delicious Russian dumplings (Pelmeni) at Prahran Market and Sandringham Farmers Market. Unfortunately, despite making THE BEST Eastern European dumplings ( I still stand by it, and happy to challenge anyone at the cook off), due to the nature of the business, I couldn’t sustain it.  For about a year it was also my logo for my personal food blog on IG, (some of you might have followed me from it) but finally I decided to move on from it. I am still very passionate about this part of my life as well as Russian/Eastern European Cuisine, so you can count on some delicious recipes and tutorials coming your way.

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If I was a wine – I would be Heathcote Shiraz.  If I was a food – creme brulee.
What would you be?
 
I do hope I will be able teach you a thing or too, give you few ideas or at the very least entertain you! I love feedback so if you have thoughts on my blog or recipes or you have tried them, do let me know 🙂
 
I am also on Instagram and Facebook, click below to follow my food adventures.
 
Now turn up your favorite tunes, pour yourself a glass of wine, crack a beer open or mix something from the bar and let’s get cooking! xo
 
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