Two Weeks in the Kitchen

The past few weeks I have been very lucky to be able to participate in a couple of cooking classes –  one provided by a local resident (who makes authentic Vietnamese cuisine) and one impromptu lesson by a visitor (Indian cuisine) and then I have been making preserves, jams and pickles.  You know what they say,  “make preserves whilst the garden provides.” And you have wondered why I haven’t posted any book reviews of late 🙂

 

Mediterranean Piccalilli

 

Chicken and Mushroom (Vietnamese style)

 

Rice Noodle Stir Fry ( Vietnamese style)

 

Beef Salad Vietnamese Style

 

Sweet Chili Tomato Sauce

 

Tomato Chuteny

 

 

Indian Food

Naan

 

Tandoori Chicken (cooked on BBQ)

 

Chicken Curry

Best Contemporary Reads or Literary Reads of 2017

2017 was a great year for discovering new to me authors, books and publishers. The task of whittling down to just a few great contemporary  reads is too hard and so I will try and mention all I think are deserving a shout out, I do hope I dont miss anyone out.

I Am I Am I Am

I am I am, I Am – Maggie O’Farrell

 

The Right Side

The Right Side – Spencer Quinn

 

Close Enough to Touch

Close Enough to Touch – Colleen Oakley

 

The Child Finder

The Child Finder – Renee Denfeld

 

#TooEasy

Too Easy – J M Green

 

Wimmera

Wimmera – Mark Brandi

 

Dear Banjo

Dear Banjo – Sasha Wasley

 

The Animators

The Animators – Kayla Rae Whitaker

 

Ache

Ache – Eliza Henry Jones

 

The Lone Child

The Lone Child – Anna George

 

Do you have any to add to the list?

 

 

In the Mail 14th January 2018

Some more great reads here- where to start? I have heard good things about Jo Spain’s books, Peter May – well of course this will be great! I have started Path to the Night Sea – a dark yet optimistic read…Brain Rules for Ageing Well ( yes I must read this) and The Clever Guts Recipe Book – I think it is time I discovered what all the hype about those eggplant brownies is about (and check out a few more of the recipes).

books 14 Jan2018 001

My Recommendations For Best Cook Books of 2017

My recommendations for cook books to have in your kitchen library provide useful, practical, achievable recipes that the home cook can easily manage . For example, over Christmas I was wanting to make some mini carrot cakes/muffins, who did I turn to? Julie Goodwin’s Essential Cookbook – it really does cover most things that the home cook might want to bake (this would make an excellent house warming gift or engagement gift).

 

Poh Ling Yeow’s Poh Bakes 100 Greats took me on a trip down memory lane (and introduced me to some new exciting recipes) ;  Bienenstich(Bee Sting Cake), Digestive Biscuits, Coconut Ice, Basic Nut Praline, Brioche Buns, Brownies, Nut Bars, Coffee Eclairs, Turkish Delight… recipes that will have you racing to the kitchen to bake.

Poh Bakes_CVR

 

Maggie’s Recipes for Life is a book that has recently been released and will garner a lot of attention. Co written with Professor Ralph Martins this book combines health science and nutrition with Maggie’s palate pleasing recipes. Watch out for this one and add to your shelf when you can.

Maggie's Recipe For Life

And lastly a book that helps you master the elements of cooking; Salt, Fat, Acid Heat by Samin Nosrat (the how to of cooking ingredients that will give you confidence to trust your instincts in the kitchen). This book is a must have.

My Best Crime/Thriller/Mystery Reads of 2017

This is always such a difficult decision to make but the best thing to do is just start, start listing… here goes; in no particular order my best Crime Fiction/Thriller/Mystery reads of 2017 are:

Flight Path – Ian Andrew

The Burden of Lies – Richard Beasley

Wimmera – Mark Brandi

The Child Finder –  Renee Denfield

Her – Garry Disher

The Girls in Kellers Way – Megan Goldin

Too Easy – J M Green

The Golden Child – Wendy James

Broken Bones – Angela Marsons

I See You – Clare Macintosh

The Last Act of Hattie Hoffman (aka Everything You Want Me to Be) – Mindy Mejia

The Right Side – Spencer Quinn

Two Nights – Kathy Reichs

The Bird Watcher – William Shaw

The Good Daughter – Karin Slaughter

Fatal Crossing (Nora Sand #1) – Lone Theils

And the Fire Came Down – Emma Viskic

 

Did any of these make it on to your reading shelves last year? There were so many great reads last year the list could have gone on an on.