belinda jeffery's news and events
It's interesting how recipes come and go in your life. When I look back through my books and teetering piles of recipe folders, I realise that there are many that used to be favourites and on the menu regularly, that I haven't made for years. I don't really know why this is. I guess as we go on trying different flavours and dishes, they start slowly but surely pushing old favourites into the background, until one day we just stop making them. And I think that fashion has a part to play in this too. In my case, I see it with Middle Eastern food. As it has become much more familiar to me, and I understand its wonderful flavour palette, I want to cook it more and more, so something else has to get dropped off the list otherwise I would never stop cooking! Sadly, though, in this process I've forgotten about some lovely dishes I used to make.
That said, there are certainly some phases of my cooking life that I'm very glad not to return to! Did I really spend 3 days cooking unspeakably complicated dishes for dinner parties? Boning out quails then stuffing them with pate; boiling down massive quantities of stock to make demi-glace sauce, then reducing this to a mere thimbleful of sticky glaze (although admittedly, it tasted amazing); and building up layer upon layer of homemade ice creams and meringues into bombe moulds, then coating the lot in chocolate, and finishing off with handmade chocolate roses. I must have been perfectly mad!
What I do love though is how some of these recipes come back into our lives. In my case, I must admit I'd completely forgotten about the lovely, light zucchini and ricotta lasagne recipe I've posted this month. At one time it was such a favourite, and then for some reason other dishes took over and I just stopped making it, so when it literally dropped into my lap as I was sorting through some recipes recently, I decided to make it again. I must admit that I had forgotten just how good it is, and how surprisingly easy it is to make, for unlike normal lasagne, zucchini slices replace the pasta (so it's entirely gluten-free), and ricotta and eggs take the place of the cheese sauce. This not only makes it faster, but also considerably lighter and fresher-tasting than usual too. I hope you enjoy making it as much as I do.
On a final note, I'm busy packing my bags to head off to South Australia for their amazing week-long Tasting Australia event. The program is truly mind-boggling, and I'm really chuffed to be taking part in it. Have a look below if you would like more details of the events I'm involved with, or for the whole event schedule go to www.tastingaustralia.com.au
P.S. FREE WORLDWIDE DELIVERY OF MY BOOKS!
Hooray!! The Book Depository is now stocking all my books and is offering free worldwide delivery. To buy them go to www.bookdepository.com/search?searchTerm=belinda%20jeffery&search=Find+book
To see more of what I’m up to, you can follow me on Instagram.
Upcoming Cooking Classes, Events & News
Tasting Australia - Adelaide
I'm really delighted to be taking part in this year's Tasting Australia which runs from 1st to 8th of May in Adelaide, www.tastingaustralia.com.au. I was fortunate to be at the inaugural TA in the 1990s (and even more fortunate to receive one of their coveted gold ladle awards for my TV segment). It was on this visit that I was completely won over by Adelaide's thriving Central Market, and the joy and passion for food that flourishes in this lovely city (I well remember my tiny hotel fridge was bulging at the seams with cheeses, smallgoods, and all sorts of treats that I hadn't been able to pass by in the market without buying just a wee slice to try...as I discovered, if you buy enough wee slices you can easily fill a fridge!). So when I was asked by the directors of Tasting Australia to take part in this year's event, I didn't miss a beat in saying yes. I'll be involved in a number of events, but the two big ones are a very special High Tea at the lovely Mayflower Restaurant, and a day-long sponge cake Masterclass with the fabulous women from South Australia's Country Women's Association. Seeing as how tea and cake are two of the things I love most in life, I feel so happy and excited about both events. If you would like to find out more about either, I have put the details below.
I shall be hosting and talking at a very elegant high tea at the Mayfair Hotel's Mayflower Restaurant and Bar in Adelaide as part of this year's Tasting Australia. Bethany Finn, the hotel's executive chef, and I shall be working on a menu of delicious sweet and savoury treats to savour with a glass of Petaluma Croser, and cups of tea and coffee. I would so love to see you there.
Join me and the SA Country Women's Association in a sponge cake masterclass. Award winning contributors from the SACWA Calendar of Cakes cookbook will share trusted family recipes and valuable prize-winning knowledge in this hands-on experience. Together, we'll reveal tips and tricks to achieve beautiful, mouth-watering sponge-based cakes that are worthy of many blue ribbons! Proceeds from this event will assist SACWA to continue its work in the community. Tickets include a signed copy of the Calendar of Cakes cookbook, an SACWA apron, lunch, and a gift bag containing SACWA products and recipes.
As part of Tasting Australia's vocational program, I'm really delighted to be taking part in a wonderful Q & A event for high school students to help answer any questions they may have about the possibility of a future career in some of the incredibly diverse aspects of the food and wine industry. The panel includes a cheesemaker, food photographer, primary producer, food writer, food lecturer, and more.
To find out more about any of these events go to www.tastingaustralia.com.au, click on the What’s On link, and then go to the Program.
Sackville (near Sydney)
The wonderfully talented Martin Boetz from Cooks Co-op www.cooksco-op.com and I are cooking up a very special Sunday lunch in his fabulous farm event 'shed' at Sackville near Sydney. We're still working out the fine details, however at this stage if you would like to find out more, contact Kelly Gillies at Cooks Co-op at email@example.com It's going to be a very special day!
Saturday 13th August
I taught for the first time at Kitchen to Table last year, and I'm so glad to be returning to this lovely shop and cooking school in Yamba. This is an intimate demonstration class (read much chat and laughter!) where I'll put together a simple but delicious lunch using local ingredients. (BTW, I have a new cookbook coming out in October 2016 so you may well get a sneak peek at a recipe or two from it!).
For bookings and enquiries for this class, please contact www.kitchentotable.com.au, or phone them on 02 6646 1577.
Wednesday 24th August
This hands-on class is my second for the year at Lismore's fabulous Pepper Tree Kitchen cookware shop and cooking school. I must admit, I haven't sorted out exactly what we shall be doing yet.sorry! However, we'll be focusing on using beautiful local produce to create a fabulous casual menu. For bookings and enquiries, please contact the Pepper Tree Kitchen at www.peppertreekitchen.com.au and click on the link to their classes. You can also phone Helen on 02 6622 0180.
23rd & 24th September
I'm pinching myself that I'm returning again to the wonderful Agrarian Kitchen Cooking School in Tasmania to teach two more baking classes on Friday 23rd and Saturday 24th of September. (At this stage the classes are full however there is a waiting list in case of cancellations). This beautiful school is one of my all-time favourite places to teach, and their holistic paddock-to-plate philosophy resonates strongly with me. Their website is really lovely and I highly recommend a visit...I rather suspect that, like me, you will be hooked once you read it! www.theagrariankitchen.com
As I do just once a year, I shall be teaching at the renowned Accoutrement Cooking School in Sydney on Tuesday 18th October @ 6.30pm, to coincide with the release of my latest cookbook on Salads. For booking enquiries, go to the Cooking School page at www.accoutrement.com.au
I think there's nothing nicer than both giving and receiving handmade gifts for Christmas. There is just something so special about knowing that someone has put all that TLC into making you something, so I thought it would be a lovely time of year to do a class on simple but gorgeous edible gifts. For bookings and enquiries, please contact the Pepper Tree Kitchen at www.peppertreekitchen.com.au and click on the link to their classes. You can also phone Helen on 02 6622 0180.
If you would like to watch me making Asparagus and Goat’s Cheese Tarts on The Morning Show, follow this link...http://au.tv.yahoo.com/video/watch/25322696/springtime-asparagus-tarts/
My favourite charity
Just A Drop - www.justadrop.org
My lovely sister-in-law, Fiona Jeffery, started this international water aid charity in 1998 when she learnt that less than $2 can deliver clean water to a child for up to 10 years. From this knowledge, and her passion and commitment, Just a Drop was born, based on the premise that if people can be encouraged to give a little then collectively we can make a huge difference. I’m so proud of all she has achieved over the years and encourage you to visit the site and see the fantastic work they do.
Favourite websites & blogs