No pie in sky

31 Dec, 2011 02:00 AM
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Mallee Tree Café and Gallery owner Anne-Marie O'Donohugh, Corrigin, makes everything on the premises including her delicious range of popular gourmet pies.
Mallee Tree Café and Gallery owner Anne-Marie O'Donohugh, Corrigin, makes everything on the premises including her delicious range of popular gourmet pies.

FOR a little over six years now, New Zealand native Anne-Marie O'Donohugh has been the creative touch behind Corrigin's Mallee Tree Café and Gallery.

Widely renowned throughout the Wheatbelt for it's delicious home-made food and great coffee, the quaint little café in the main street of town is a hit with the locals and travellers alike.

Serving hearty breakfasts, gourmet rolls and sandwiches, light lunches, a yummy selection of home-made pies, award-winning cakes and biscuits, Anne-Marie boasts some of the best fare around.

And it's little wonder, considering the amount of time she spends in the kitchen and the love she puts into creating everything on the café style menu - from scratch.

But if you're anything like me, it's the coffee you're probably curious about.

And you'll be happy to know Anne-Marie serves up fresh 5 Senses coffee, Devonshire teas, milkshakes and smoothies on a daily basis.

"I've been in Corrigin for about 22 years now," Anne-Marie said.

"I originally joined the local art club which took up residence in an old house we called the craft cottage.

"I was known around town for my baking, especially at Christmas time when I'd produce rows and rows of fruit mince pies, Christmas cakes and puddings.

"My love of food really grew from there and I started to man a street stall during the festive season."

During this time Anne-Marie also juggled baking for the newly-opened café where she worked as a cook and her employment as a dental nurse at the local practice.

"When the owner of the café decided to move on after two years of running it she approached me," Anne-Marie smiled.

In what Anne-Marie now calls "a big leap of faith", papers were signed and the deal was done.

Since then Anne-Marie has placed a firm emphasis on home-style cooking using nothing but the freshest ingredients she can lay her hands on.

In the winter visitors to the café relax on the comfortable couches around the roaring open fire and during harvest, escape the heat in air-conditioned comfort.

"The old building also has a lot of character," Anne-Marie said.

"It was originally a farm supply store and has since housed a hardware store, gardening store and most recently, a drapery."

Anne-Marie is run off her feet during spring and its alluring wildflower season.

Weary travellers on their way to Wave Rock make up a large percentage of her clientele.

The Mallee Tree Café and Gallery also showcases local artwork, stunning hand painted clocks, crafts and tables made from WA's beautiful mallee timber, which is fitting, considering the café's gallery room is available for private hire.

So inquire about bus groups for morning teas, afternoon teas and lunches because bookings are essential and keep Anne-Marie in mind to cater for your next function, birthday, Christmas party or business meeting.

Or better still, drop by and say hello next time you're in Corrigin!

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