Guest Review: Invisible Boys- Holden Shepperd

Invisible Boys

Holden Sheppard

Fremantle Press

ISBN: 9781925815566

Rachel’s View:

A gritty, authentic and emotional story of three teenage boys grappling with their identities in a country town. With heart-wrenching honesty, a dash of humour and all-to-real descriptions of rural life that are both beautiful and devastating, Invisible Boys is the kind of book you can get lost in. Holden’s multi-award winning YA novel has been called a “once in a generation” debut, exploring the crushing feeling of being made to feel like an outsider in the place that should be your home. It’s raw, angst-ridden and at times will have you cringing at the situations the characters find themselves in, but ultimately the undeniably relatable sense of aching is tempered with hope. #invisibleboys

Guest Review: Stalking Claremont – Bret Christian

Stalking Claremont
Inside the Hunt for a Serial Killer  
Bret Christian
ABC Books
Harper Collins Publishers Australia

Rachel’s Review:

An incredibly gripping, insightful and compelling look behind the scenes of Australia’s longest-running homicide investigation.

I was absolutely hooked by this fascinating exploration of the horrific crimes and subsequent decades of investigations to catch the murderer that terrorised Claremont.

This meticulous probe into the high-stakes police work, bumbling mistakes, and relentless focus on innocent suspects was riveting. With broad strokes reporter Bret Christian paints a vivid picture of Claremont in the late 1990s, a world that in many ways feels so familiar and yet, in others, so far removed from my own experiences as a young woman in Perth just a decade later – testament to how much we were changed as a town when three women’s lives were cut short. Piecing together what we remember from the last 20 plus years of media coverage with all the things the public never knew, including how the case was eventually cracked, this is a considered, detailed and well-researched ode to three Perth women whose names will never be forgotten – Sarah Spiers, Jane Rimmer and Ciara Glennon.

Tempeh Red Curry : Doctor’s Kitchen 3-2-1 – Dr Rupy Aujla

Doctors Kitchen 3-2-1

Dr Rupy Aujla

Harper Collins Australia

ISBN: 9780008395414

RRP $34.99

Tempeh Red Curry

PREP 10 MINUTES/COOK 20 MINUTES

2 tbsp coconut oil

200g tempeh (or firm tofu), broken into 2cm pieces

160g red onion (about 1 medium), thinly sliced

1 tbsp red curry paste (or any curry paste)

50g piece of root ginger (about 5cm), grated

160g mangetout or sugar snap peas

160g asparagus spears, roughly chopped

2 tbsp peanut butter (smooth or crunchy)

400g tin coconut milk

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

TO SERVE

juice of 1 lime

20g fresh coriander, chopped

30g unsalted peanuts, chopped

1 Melt half the coconut oil in a large casserole dish over a medium heat, add the tempeh and fry for 3–4 minutes until browned all over.

2 Remove and set aside, then add the onions to the same dish with the rest of the oil and sauté for 3–4 minutes.

3 Add the curry paste and ginger and fry, stirring, for 2 minutes until coloured.

4 Add the mangetout, asparagus, peanut butter and coconut milk, season with salt and pepper and simmer for 7–8 minutes.

5 Return the cooked tempeh to the dish for the last 2 minutes of cooking.

6 Serve with the lime juice and garnish with the chopped coriander and peanuts.

Malaysian-style Kari – Doctor’s Kitchen 3-2-1 – Dr Rupy Aujla

Doctor’s Kitchen 3-2-1

Dr Rupy Aujla

Imprint: HarperCollins

ISBN: 9780008395414

RRP: $34.99

“There is one lentil dish I find myself craving more than any other, and it’s this one. The umami blend of soy and fish sauces ripples through the sharp ginger and aromatics of cinnamon and star anise. This is a pleasure to cook and addictive to eat.”

Malaysian-style Kari

PREP 10 MINUTES/COOK 45–50 MINUTES

2 tbsp coconut oil

1 tsp brown mustard seeds

1 cinnamon stick

1 star anise

120g shallots (about 2), finely chopped

8–10 curry leaves (optional)

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

25g piece of root ginger (about 3cm), grated

1 tsp ground turmeric

1 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp fish sauce

160g aubergine (about 1 large), cut into 1.5cm chunks

200g ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped

200g dried split yellow lentils, rinsed

400ml boiling water

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

10g fresh coriander leaves, to serve

1 Melt the coconut oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat, add the mustard seeds, cinnamon, star anise, shallots, curry leaves (if using), garlic and ginger and stir for 2–3 minutes until the oil and spices are fragrant.

2 Add the turmeric, soy sauce, fish sauce, aubergine and tomatoes, season and cook for a further 5 minutes before adding the lentils and stirring for another minute.

3 Add the boiling water and simmer for 35–40 minutes until the lentils are soft. Remove from the heat and either stick-blend or mash the mixture with a potato masher to create a lovely, thick dhal.

4 Serve the dhal scattered with the coriander leaves.

Cook’s tips You can use cooked lentils from a tin – reduce the amount of boiling water by two-thirds and the cooking time (once the lentils are added to the aubergine, etc.) to 10 minutes.

Tempeh is a fermented soybean product packed with protein, dietary fibre and vitamins. It originates from Indonesia and has a dense and chewy texture, as opposed to tofu’s silky, smooth texture. I know tempeh isn’t everyone’s favourite ingredient but trust me, it’s because you haven’t experienced it at its best. The flavours in this dish are phenomenal and the texture of tempeh suits this method of cooking.

Chicken Gumbo: Doctor’s Kitchen 3-2-1 – Dr Rupy Aujla

Doctors Kitchen – 3-2-1

3 fruit and veg, 2 servings, 1 pan

Dr Rupy Aujla

Thorsons

Harper Collins Australia

ISBN: 9780008395414

RRP $34.99

Description:

In his new book, bestselling author and medical doctor Dr Rupy Aujla introduces his simple 3-2-1 formula, making it possible to easily cook healthy meals every day. Following on from his two best selling cook books, he builds on his message that the most important health intervention anyone can make is what you put on your plate.

Containing over 100 recipes that offer a streamlined cooking process whilst ensuring health benefits to optimise wellbeing, 3-2-1 is an easy-to-follow health prescription. This daily dose of fresh ingredients, quality fats, whole grains and plenty of fibre lowers the risk of disease. Guided by scientific evidence, Dr Rupy’s core principles of healthy eating remain the same – keep plant focused, eat lots of fibre, plenty of colourful vegetables and whole foods.

As a busy doctor, Dr Rupy knows that one of the main reasons people choose not to cook at home is lack of time as well as the effort to cook it. Each recipe is cleverly formulated to require only one pan, minimising the cooking process and using as little equipment as possible – the majority only require a knife, chopping board and a cooking dish.

Dr Rupy’s practical and easy-to-use book promises delicious, flavourful dishes that consistently look after our bodies, helping to beat illness by optimising our food choices. This is a prescription to fill yourself, one plate at a time.

The holy trinity of celery, pepper and onion is the hallmark of Southern American cooking and this blend of vegetables with oregano and paprika is the epitome of comfort food. I adore this dish, with its hit of spice and indulgent chicken flavour.” p 202

Chicken Gumbo

PREP 15–20 MINUTES/COOK 25 MINUTES

2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

300–350g boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 4), diced into 3cm chunks

160g celery (3–4 stalks), finely diced (reserve the leaves to garnish)

160g deseeded green pepper (about 1 large), finely diced

160g onion (about 1 medium), finely diced

2 garlic cloves, chopped

½ tsp smoked paprika

1 tsp dried oregano

generous pinch of cayenne pepper

1 tbsp tomato purée

1½ tbsp corn flour

1 vegetable stock cube

450ml boiling water

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

15g fresh dill, chopped, to serve

1. Heat half the oil in a casserole dish over a high heat, add the chicken and cook for 4–5 minutes until brown all over. Remove and set aside on a plate.

2. Reduce to a medium heat and add the rest of the oil to the same casserole dish along with the celery, pepper, onions and garlic and fry for 5 minutes.

3. Add the paprika, oregano, cayenne pepper and tomato purée and season. Cook for 1 minute, then return the chicken to the dish.

4. Stir in the corn flour, crumble in the stock cube and add the water to the dish. Cover and simmer for 10–15 minutes until thickened.

5. Remove from the heat and serve the gumbo scattered with the dill.

***Variation If you want to make this veggie, swap the chicken for a tin of kidney beans and some chopped okra.