Food. Life. Travel.

I like to describe myself as a teacher first, chef second. My career as cookery teacher, caterer and writer spans three long, eventful decades. One day, I will write a tell all memoir!  I will name names. My great love is to invite people to my rather chaotic kitchen table and plie them with simple food, litres of wine and regale them with tales – some true, some ‘embellished.’ But now, I’ve reached the point in my life when my family and friends have heard my stories, jokes and travel tips so many times that their eyes glaze over as soon as I open my mouth. My other obsession is to travel with groups of like minded people, so my stories and recipes originate from many destinations, from home and abroad.

April 30, 2019

I am leading a small tour to Sicily in October 2019 and so I have been trawling through my photos of previous trips. Memories, names and faces jostle for my attention with recipes, tastes and changed perceptions. I am re-reading, Maria Grammatica’s seminal book on bisc...

April 26, 2019

On Palm Sunday 2019, Radio Italiana 531, held a competition for pizza chiena. The choice of date, though serendipitous, was perfect. I was one of four judges.

Photo Credit: Radio Italiana 531AM. In the station's Maria Donato Boardroom on Port Road. 

Palm Sunday – a...

April 20, 2019

Just a few weeks ago I gave a ‘masterclass’ in our beautiful Botanic Gardens for Diggers Heirloom Seeds, on Olives and Grains - Essentials of the Mediterranean Kitchen.  One of the recipes I demonstrated was for a traditional pastiera napoletana using soaked wheat grai...

March 12, 2019

I recently visited a dear friend at her Carey Gully house for afternoon tea with our friend who now lives in Sydney. The views over the undulating hills were mesmerising, and my attention kept wandering to the horses and the Dorper lambs gamboling over the dry earth as...

February 2, 2019

This morning, I picked my day’s supply of ripe tomatoes and found myself excited by the number of green ones left on the vine.

Some, naturally, will ripen – we have a lot of warm weather left in the season. But some will never ripen and then I can make my mother’s recip...

January 4, 2019

Honestly, sometimes I find myself weighing up the advantages of having a dual heritage. 

Photo Credit: For the November 2013 issue of SALife, I used pandoro to make my Christmas Bombe Alaska. Time to bring out the flame thrower again.

Here we are, first week of January,...

December 30, 2018

This will be my fifth visit to Sicily but I am still peeling back the layers and discovering places that take my breath away.

Travellers who have been to Venice, Florence, Rome and Milan, will relish a part of Italy that is raw, covered by layers of history with dramati...

December 28, 2018

That week between Christmas and New Year is known in our house as the Festival of In Between. It is a curious, untethered time when people don’t know what day it is, or whether the shops are open or not.

Rather than questioning who we are and why we exist at all, we try...

November 13, 2018

On the weekend, Gina Dal Santo and I taught a lovely group of women some traditional Christmas recipes from various regions of Italy in the WEA demonstration kitchen.

Photo Credit: WEA demonstration kitchen, 11th November, 2018. Italian Christmas Baking Workshop making...

October 24, 2018

“Travelling is really useful, it makes your imagination work. Everything else is disappointment, effort. The journey we are given is entirely imaginary. That is its strength.

Louis Ferdinand Céline, Journey to the End of Night, 1932. 

(opening quotation of La G...

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