How to take a moment

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They took care of hair and make-up, blooms, the food, the never-ending trays of fish and chips and pulled-apart croquembouche, and all I had to do was love it all up on my wedding day. But the next day my new beau and I turned to the sparkly waters of Palm Beach, dove under the waves and washed away all the heat and built-up adrenaline in the perfect, cold, salt water. He wanted to take a moment, with me. He brought with him his surfboard and I brought my towel and magazines, and we took a moment. We took a breath.

So the moral of the story is… take a moment. As we get sillier and sillier as we move through the festive season and towards Christmas, take a second to breathe and remember what matters, that all the present-buying and rush of Christmas is really meant to be a day of showing how much you love your family and friends. Ride your bike or take a dip in the pool, plunge your entire body under water, walk under trees, walk barefoot. And then return, recovered. That’s what I’ll be doing, anyway. {READ MORE}

A Palm Beach wedding

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Still reeling slightly, head still full of bouquets and my chap’s smile and all the people I love cheering me on from a little Palm Beach park on a hot summer’s day last week. Yep, I got hitched.

We filled the car with Champagne glasses and actual Champagne, one massive gown and heads packed with planning and schedules and to-do lists and drove to our Palm Beach wedding, and after a ceremony that included 32C heat and then a magical thunderstorm during the vows, including a massive lightening crack when he said “love and respect”, we were married.

The Boathouse at Palm Beach was decked out in hydrangeas and peonies, we ate fish and chips (see me at inspection point below), roast beef and paella and ordered scoops from an icecream stall, we cracked open a giant croquembouche and sliced into a traditional cake my mother made. And we danced, a LOT.

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After a few days spent with our family and mates in Palm Beach, staying at a house (see below) that was so ridiculously Palm Beach it was bordering on a good kind of cliche, me and my groom took a few days up north running and surfing and eating and not writing or referring to one single to-do list. {READ MORE}

{Restaurant Australia} Invite the world to dinner

Peter Gilmore in the Restaurant Australia campaign

Let’s invite the world to dinner, says Tourism Australia in its newest campaign, Restaurant Australia. The stunning campaign will showcase Australian produce, chefs, and food. And in a couple of weeks I get to go along to an extraordinary event in Hobart, at MONA, in which our chefs Quay’s Peter Gilmore, Attica’s Ben Shewry, and Rockpool’s Neil Perry are being given the reins to show off what this gorgeous country has to offer. Check out the video… It’s a bit pride inducing, fellow Aussies.

 

Noma chef Rene Redzepi makes the hen and the egg

Is this the perfect dish? At Noma, chef Rene Redzepi has diners cook their own egg with hay oil, served with spinach leaves and wild plants growing in the local forest.

A hot plate at 280F (138C) appears on slightly wet hay, and guests are instructed to cook the egg. “You would be surprised at the number of people who have never cracked an egg before,” he says. The dish creates dialogue and interaction, and shows people how easy food can be. Guests add thyme butter to the pan, cook the spinach leaves and wild ramp leaves, and it’s topped with a pretty potato chip. All the small wild plants are sprinkled over.

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I’m going to recreate this at home. Such a gorgeous idea to serve guests as a summer lunch.

Rhubarb and apple crisp with cinnamon ice-cream

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Something hot and pudding-like may not be in tune with Sydney weather right now, but I’m churning up a batch of spiced cinnamon icecream this afternoon to serve with my light rhubarb and apple, American-style crisp. It’s all the comforting softness necessary for a Sunday night, after a salt-sprayed summery day.

Here you will find my recipe for rhubarb and apple crisp with cinnamon ice-cream in SBS Feast magazine. {READ MORE}

Imperfect picks help stop food waste

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Knobbly carrots and misshapen pears, stunted broccoli and scratched up eggplant; we bypass them all as we reach for aesthetically perfect fruit and veg on our grocery shop routine. Would you buy these imperfect picks from the food markets, the supermarket? Loads of us wouldn’t. Which is why 25 percent of Australian produce gets thrown back to the earth, considered unsuitable for our consumption. That’s HUGE wastage, to the detriment of our environment and our farmers. What can you do? Well… {READ MORE}

What Jamie Oliver told me

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Blown away by this guy. I knew he was clever and impassioned, that he could cook. But Jamie Oliver in person had me kind of swooning. We got chatting on a red leather sofa during his latest trip to Sydney, I used two tape recorders just in case (one died so thank goodness), and talked about food, obesity, his latest book, and fatherhood.

Jamie Oliver cannot stand spoilt kids. The father of four cracks down on that, he admits; he’s kind of strict. “If I sniff that, it gets drummed out of them straight away.” He wants them to be polite, lay the table for dinner and, he adds, “I’m pretty hardcore about pulling your finger out and saying ‘please’ and ‘thank you’, basically.”

My interview with the ridiculously talented Jamie Oliver came out today in Sunday Style magazine. Download it on your tablet here. {READ MORE}

‘Peanut butter and jelly’ sugar-free protein smoothie

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This breakfast is so portable you can have some of it as you rush out the door, then a little more on the 7.56am commute, then at your desk when you trawl through your emails. For those of us who hanker for peanut butter and jam on toast first thing, but push the idea aside as simply silly in the name of eating nutritious and less carby things, this tote-able breakfast is the stupendously delicious answer to our prayers.

I’ve been running, a lot. I joined a running club and discovered (after personal trainers and even a miserable boot camp) what it means to work hard, physically. The trainer who leads it has taught my muscles a thing or two. On the first sessions, I’ll admit, I silently freaked out at the hardness of it. But damn I loved it too. And I’ll be back again next week.

But an early early morning workout like that demands a breakfast; a real breakfast that tells the muscles to stop freaking out, that fills you up until lunch and, importantly, that feels like breakfast. I’m all about green smoothies right now but they don’t evoke that kind of breakfasty goodness, that morning aroma that comes with coffee and toast and sun streaming in. So I made this. A protein shake, but with nutritious, virtuous things in it (including LSA, that ground linseed, sunflower seed and almond mix), and with a sorbet-like raspberry topping. It’s like toast with peanut butter and a little dollop of raspberry jam, in smoothie form. Here’s the recipe for my Peanut Butter and Jelly smoothie. {READ MORE}

Pepita and grain salad with pumpkin and tahini

A bounty of healthy grains and seeds matched with rich and sweet roast pumpkin, this salad makes a perfect side dish or hearty lunch. Packed with protein and flavour, this dish has it all. Pepitas add a crunch to the salad, which is bound by textures and colour. You can reserve the seeds from the pumpkin, roast them and add them to the salad. I love these ingredients; I have them every day, whenever I can. I tuck pumpkin into salads and soup, and pepitas and other seeds into my three-grain Be Natural porridge every morning. But here’s my recipe for pepita and grain salad with pumpkin and a creamy tahini dressing.

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pumpkin {READ MORE}

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