What has been occupying us for the past month(ish), from books to podcasts to recipes and beauty products. February was a fun month for trying new recipes courtesy of TikTok, Netflix-binging and hitting the cinema (finally!).
Image Created by Canva
The Baked Feta Pasta Hack (Talani)
Some of the best foods are those simplest to make, like a toasted ham and cheese sandwich on a Sunday morning. Now, the baked feta pasta hack joins this list. As a fan of “One Pot Wonders'' this recipe ticked all the boxes for me - easy, delicious and next to no dishes. Basically it requires you to pop a whole block of feta, heaps of cherry tomatoes, salt, pepper and olive oil in a baking dish in the oven for about half an hour (and if you love to pimp your recipes, I reckon olives would work a treat in this!). In the meantime, get your pasta ready and when everything is out of the oven you mix them all together - add basil - and Bob’s your uncle. Finnish Blogger Jenni Hayrinen is credited as creating uunifetapasta just over two years ago. The recipe went viral in Finland sparking rumours that the country had sold out of Feta (Hayrinen reports on her blog that sales were up 300%). Uunifetapasta is riding a second viral wave as a result of @grilledcheesesocial sharing the recipe on Tik Tok. While this is my February recommendation you just might need to wait for feta to be restocked before you try it yourself.
(Feta in Oven Tray with baked yellow cherry tomatoes)
Superstore (TV show) (Lilly)
I am so VERY far from a film critique, or even a film fanatic - I have the attention span of a gnat and so find it very hard to concentrate on TV shows. However, I became absolutely obsessed with Superstore on Netflix (alongside the majority of the rest of the planet) once I finally sat down to watch it. It stars and is co-produced by America Ferrera (Ugly Betty!) and takes place in a fictional ‘Cloud 9’ department store where an eclectic bunch of staff struggle to put up with their customers and co-workers. It’s not a new show - it premiered in America in 2015, but was only released on Netflix Australia in January 2021 which is why it feels like somewhat of a hidden gem. With 20-minute bingeable episodes, it’s an ideal candidate for end-of-day-remove-your-brain watching. However, it also tackles important issues around race, gender, sexuality and disability, and the notably diverse cast feels natural and representative of the working class. If you’ve ever worked in retail, you will definitely relate to the daily mishaps that take place in Cloud 9. If you enjoyed the humour of Brooklyn 99 and/or The Good Place, you’ll love Superstore.
Promising Young Woman (Ellen)
My February fave is the film Promising Young Woman - I recommend everyone to track down their closest cinema for a viewing.
Directed and written by Emerald Fennell (Hello Camilla for any fellow The Crown fanatics), this film is already an awards contender and I can see why.
To avoid spoilers, I’m just going to say that it is a blunt, harrowing, unflinching depiction of rape culture and revenge. Carey Mulligan (is there anything this woman can’t do?) is phenomenal, delivering a powerful performance to add to her stellar career.
I laughed, I cried, I was enraged. “Cinema is a mirror by which we often see ourselves” - with this film Fennell has provided a mirror that reflects the reality of women everywhere.
It’s not an easy watch by any means, but an important one (especially given the current conversation in politics this country is having). Go see - and support female filmmakers!
CW: please be wary this film contains content i.e. sexual assault which may be triggering for some viewers.