Milton-Ulladulla Harbourfeast

THE Milton-Ulladulla region will celebrate the return of its annual food and wine festival this weekend. Harbourfeast will kick off with a festival dinner at Cupitt’s Winery on Friday, November 4 and will continue the following day (Saturday, November 5) at the Ulladulla Civic Centre, showcasing the very best the Southern Shoalhaven has to offer … Continue reading

Hallowe’en: it’s not quite what you think

Last week, a fellow twitterer sent me this message:  “Couldn’t we pass on the Halloween pumpkin carving? Flooded with enough US culture already!” He was referring to a query of mine on the Mini Chef Facebook page: “Have you ordered your Halloween pumpkin yet (in time to practise your carving skills)?” I had to remind … Continue reading

Looking for a Sugardaddy?

Pastry chef Brent Templeton has worked for Lindt Chocolate patisserie, the Yellow Bistro in Kings Cross (owned by former Rockpool pastry chef, Lorraine Godsmark) and Black Star Pastry and Bloodwood restaurant in Newtown. Yet he’d never made a batch of scones until a few days ago. “There are so many things to learn in the … Continue reading

Are You As Cool As A Quke?

Last week I was surprised to find a green plastic lunch box  on my doorstep when I arrived home. It was tied up with a yellow ribbon and when I looked inside I found it filled with finger-length cucumbers, called Qukes by their producers. Torpedo-shaped and smaller in size than their cousins, the Lebanese cucumbers, … Continue reading

Three Cheers for Community Spirit

It’s a cool windy morning when I pull into the Killcare General Store at Hardys Bay on the NSW Central Coast. Despite the grey skies, proprietor Garry Janes has a big smile on his face and greets me warmly.   The reason I’m visiting is because I noticed his thriving herb and vegetable boxes outside the … Continue reading

King of the Vegetables

Can you imagine three asparagus spears weighing 500g? It’s the weight recorded by the Roman author Pliny (23 AD – August 25, 79 AD) of asparagus grown in the wetlands of Ravenna in north-eastern Italy. Some stalks even weighed in at 300g each. The Romans were in fact the first to cultivate asparagus from the … Continue reading

“Mini Chef” Kids Cooking Classes

Hurry, hurry – book in now to my Mini Chef Kids Cooking Classes during the school holidays: My aim is to teach children to prepare a wholesome, nutritious meal which they love to eat and can reproduce easily at home. This is not celebrity chef restaurant-style food. Hygiene, nutrition – and loads of laughs – … Continue reading

Mushrooms Go Pink

I learnt an astonishing fact last week: women who eat one white button mushroom a day have fifty per cent less chance of developing breast cancer. At a lunch organised by the  Australian Mushroom Growers Association in Sydney, dietitian Glenn Cardwell told us that breakthrough US research has found that eating 100 grams or less … Continue reading

The Tree of Life, Samoan-style

It’s easy to see why Samoans call the coconut tree “the tree of life”. Not only do these graceful trees dot the coastlines of the white-fringed islands of Samoa, swaying gently in the warm breezes and lending shade, they’re also an invaluable supply of food, fuel and housing for the Samoan people. On my recent … Continue reading