Healthy Eating

After fresh ideas for meals that are healthy but still pack a flavour punch? We've got salads and vegetable-packed bowls to soups and light desserts.

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Pea and ham soup

Coffee culture: A history

Australia’s love affair with coffee is stronger than ever; it’s become a way of life. But exactly how did a beverage manage to shape our country’s culture?

Tarta de Santiago

"Gordita makes a splendid version of the Galician almond cake Tarta de Santiago, with its dramatic design. Would you please publish the recipe?" Michael MacDermott, Taringa, Qld REQUEST A RECIPE To request a recipe, email fareexchange@bauer-media.com.au or send us a message via Facebook. Please include the restaurant's name and address, as well as your name and address. Please note that because of the volume of requests we receive, we can only publish a selection in the magazine.

Event: Bacon Week

A celebration of one of our favourite breakfast foods.

Curry recipes

When you're in need of rejuvenation, there's nothing better than a warming bowl of curry, whether it's gently spiced potato and egg, a punchy Jamaican goat number or an elaborate Burmese fish curry. Here are our favourite recipes.

Bread and butter pudding

Just what you need on a cold winter's night; a bowl of luscious pudding. Make sure to leave room for seconds.

Bali's new wave of restaurants, hotels and bars

The restaurant and hotel scene on Australia's favourite holiday island has never been more exciting and Australian chefs, owners and restaurateurs are leading the charge, writes Samantha Coomber.

Autumn's most popular recipes 2017

As the weather started to cool down, your stoves were heating up with spicy curries, hearty breakfast dishes and comforting bowls of pasta. You balanced things out nicely with some greens but dessert wasn't entirely forgotten. Counting down from 30, here are your 2017 autumn favourites.

November

Tradition has it that no tomatoes are ever planted out in Victoria before Cup day and so it shall be in my garden. They are happy in the hothouse. I delay the basil planting until then also. My experience has been that basil planted too early can sulk and certainly does not thrive.

My miniature fruit trees are crowded with small fruits. I shall remove some - last year the nectarines were too close together and some developed a sticky, sooty something or other before withering and falling off anyway.

I understand the theory of crop rotation but it's really difficult when one has little space. I couldn't possibly chop up my broad bean plants while they're still cropping and yet I really need that space for climbing pole beans or cucumbers or maybe for miniature sweet melons. In the front garden I'll designate one side as tomato territory, opposite where they grew last year. And this time I'll be realistic about providing tall stakes as I had a few broken plants last summer.

Similarly, the peas are still cropping just where I want to plant out the eggplant. My parsley self-seeds, so I find tender little plants in some surprising places, such as cracks in the paving on the shady side of the yard. The roots of this plant must be under the house! Wherever I can, I plant a new row of heirloom Manchester table carrots, mixing the super-fine seed with at least three parts of seed-raising mix in my hand and carefully sowing along the drill. This means that I rarely have to thin my carrot crop.

My best roses are all spring-flowering, so after the glory of October I have to wait for a second flush. I do find an hour of dead-heading a meditative way to start on a bright morning. I have Sparrieshoop, Julia, Lesbos, and a no-name lovely climbing white rose with perfect pointed buds that sets large golden rosehips. On the back fence, Lamarque, mermaid and crépuscule fight it out. The thorns on mermaid are truly frightful. The glorious Graham Thomas and the climbing Lorraine Lee come later in my garden.

Colin Beer and I have an annual date. He and Maggie and I arrange to go somewhere nice for a weekend and part of the deal is that Colin prunes my ornamental grapevine before we leave. As a grape-grower he is an expert, yet I am always amazed at the severity of his prune. But of course the leaves are unfurling beautifully, promising months of summer shade. I am hopeful that this will be the year the vine fully covers the pergola.

After so many years of drought the garden has flourished with our heavy winter and early spring rain. My tanks are absolutely overflowing. And the Aerobin compost maker should be emptied soon to give the garden beds a spring tonic, probably boosted with some well-rotted poultry manure.

Since I last wrote, the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Foundation has celebrated the completion and launch of two of our demonstration schools, Moonah in Tasmania and Bulimba in Queensland. Both schools have created their sunny lovely kitchens in buildings provided under the federal government's Building the Education Revolution program. Before the election the newspapers were full of disaster stories about waste, but here are two brilliantly successful projects. Why is there less interest in reporting success? In Tasmania the architect-designed kitchen and dining space has a wall of glass that overlooks the beautiful garden. In Bulimba the garden is steeply terraced, and the children dash up and down with the agility of the young. (I was a bit more cautious.)

A special fundraising dinner for the foundation will be held later this month at Bondi Public School. Guests will be invited to view the garden and the lovely kitchen before proceeding to dinner (get the details here).

Until next time.

This article is from the November 2010 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.

 

MORE INFO

For information on Stephanie Alexander's Kitchen Garden Foundation and schools program, visit www.kitchengardenfoundation.org.au.

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