Ooh la la – Chocolat

ooh la la design

No-one knows and loves chocolate like the French. They have made it an art form, and rightly so. The French have known for centuries that chocolate is not just food, it's sustenance for the soul and an essential element of la joie de vivre. … [Read More...]

ooh la la design

Ooh la la – Chocolat

No-one knows and loves chocolate like the French. They have made it an art form, and rightly so. The French have known for centuries that chocolate is not just food, it’s sustenance for the soul and an essential element of la joie de vivre.


Stop and smell the roses

Towns and villages in Europe attract admiration not just because they’re historic, charming and old. Wherever we went in Ireland, England and France, old buildings, bridges, lamp-posts, doorways and shopfronts were vibrant with the colour and fragrance of flowers.  It was an exemplary demonstration of the art of public space.

Kylemore Abbey Ireland

The Joys of Travel

Having just returned from a four week European holiday, I’m poorer of pocket but vastly richer in other ways, including material for blog posts.  Like life itself, travel does not bestow its joys unconditionally.  But looking back, the joys will remain cherished memories, while the lows have been consigned to experience and after-dinner jokes.

cooking equality

Cooking Equality

With marriage equality a hotly debated and fiercely political issue in Australia and internationally, and also in light of my work in progress about one of the world’s most famous gay “marriages”, it seemed timely to have a look at cooking equality.


Time Travelling

If you’ve noticed the epistles have been a bit sporadic of late, I have a good excuse.  I’m writing a novel. When I say writing a novel, if you think of it as a journey, I’ve backed the car out of the garage and am wrestling with the map. So it’s early days.  Ahead lies a very… 

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As if a cookbook had anything to do with writing

Far too much has been written about food, by everyone from enthusiastic bloggers to world renowned chefs.  Loosely meeting the criteria for the former, I willingly concede my culpability in adding to the over-supply.  Not that I plan to let that staunch the flow any time soon.

kings beach retreat

A Regal Retreat

You don’t have to wait for balmy weather to enjoy a weekend break by the sea.  If the location is as spectacular as King’s Beach on South Australia’s Fleurieu Peninsula, even if the conditions are decidedly wintry, it’s an unforgettable experience, as we discovered last weekend.

meat free week

Going Meat Free

It’s on again – the week when meat is off (the menu that is).  Meat Free Week 2015 takes place from Monday 23rd March to Sunday 29th March and while the thought of it might strike terror into the hearts of red blooded men, sausage sizzlers, pork belly buffs, burger addicts and butchers alike, it’s… 

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Australia’s Emerald Isle

While Ireland may have appropriated the term “Emerald Isle”, we can justifiably borrow it to describe Tasmania, Australia’s very own pastoral paradise. I have always loved the place (enough to choose it as a wedding venue in fact!), lived and worked there once and recently published an article about it.

alice b toklas

Alice Toklas’s Sunday night suppers

Better known as the self-effacing amanuensis and lover of Gertrude Stein, Alice Toklas was no shrinking violet in the kitchen. Her culinary prowess, as well as sustaining Gertrude’s literary endeavours (and considerable girth), set the stage for those more celebrated cooks who came later. Long before Julia Child’s, Elizabeth David’s or Alice Waters’ conversions to the… 

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new year

Brand New Year

Only four days into 2015 it’s still as fresh as a just baked loaf. Before it begins drying out, going stale and getting mouldy, let’s take a minute to re-capture the exhiliration and optimism that fuel our fun on New Year’s Eve.

christmas treats collage

Can You Feel the Love?

Baking up a storm at Christmas is a long standing tradition in my family. Although my grandmother was not the pioneer, she certainly set the benchmark for my mother and ultimately me.  My initiation into the annual ode to gastronomic excess took place many years ago at her groaning table. My mother’s Christmas repasts were only slightly less… 

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james joyce kitchen with joyce 3

James Joyce’s Kitchen

James Joyce’s Ulysses has been hailed as the greatest novel of the 20th century. Volumes have been written over the years about both Joyce and the book, but perhaps less widely discussed are the eating habits of both the author and the book’s protagonist, Leopold Bloom. When you take even a cursory look at Joyce and… 

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Gingering up Christmas

In the lead-up to Christmas my mood swings wildly between Scrooge-like misanthropy and absurd visions of conjuring up some kind of idealised “Better Homes & Gardens” homescape, complete with holly decked halls and cinnamon scents wafting from the oven. Reality eventually sets in when the Christmas tree once again defies every attempt to keep it perpendicular… 

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food and fiction

Introducing Food and Fiction

Here you won’t find a banquet, a smorgasbord, a feast or anything extravagant at all. Rather, it is a series of small bites, amuses bouches if you like, designed for lovers of food and fiction. The original purpose of these pieces was to fulfill some of the requirements for the Graduate Certificate in Food Writing I… 

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Here we go round the Mulberry Bush

When HWMBF (He Who Must Be Fed) decided to plant two ornamental mulberry trees in the front garden, he was more interested in aesthetics than food production. Several years on however these mulberry trees, arguably still ornamental, have developed into freakishly prolific bearers of tiny but intensely sweet, juicy and flavoursome berries.

food sense

Food Sense

Food sense is a bit like common sense – a rarer attribute than you might expect. Having been a prime example of food foolishness over the years (lurching from all out piggery to borderline eating disorder and back again), I’m not one to preach. However perhaps because I’ve made all the mistakes, I was especially… 

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yorke peninsula

Sea Gazing and Grazing

My excuse for having been missing in action from Epicurean Epistles for a while is that we were away on holiday for a week which meant a holiday from everything (blogging and the dreaded fasting diet included ((more on that later)). When I reluctantly returned to my computer, there were literally hundreds of emails awaiting… 

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