"My mojo is back," I declared with a grin, as I shimmied past Peter ostentatiously. "Well, that's good to hear," he said, adding "I didn't realise it had left you."
When my oldest child (my son) was just a wee baby, I lived two doors away from Val, a lovely stay-at-home mum, who had two little boys of her own. Like me, Val loved to cook, and we spent many happy hours together cooking, taste-testing and discussing recipes - particularly the quick and simple, old fashioned Aussie kind.
morsel [/ˈmɔːs(ə)l/] noun.
A small piece or quantity of food; a mouthful. Something very tasty and appetising. A treat or tidbit.
In the introduction to her latest book, Food for Sharing Italian Style, Liliana Battle, shares a narrative about watching an elderly couple who were sitting at the table next to her in a restaurant.
'I smiled, and thought how nice it was to see two people well into their eighties still going out... to enjoy a meal together. Then I watched as they just sat there, not speaking, not even looking at each other. It was almost painful to watch... but then the waiter came out and placed a plate of food in front of each of them... they talked, they laughed and they came to life in front of my eyes,' she writes.
A Year in My Real Food Kitchen is the second book from Emma Galloway - former chef, photographer and creator of the multi-award-winning food blog, My Darling Lemon Thyme.
'Will you be making those tasty little chicken-wing thingeys?' asked Peter, as we prepared to welcome some friends for a gathering. 'Absolutely,' I replied. 'They're always a great crowd pleaser,' I added with a smile.
The frosts have come earlier than usual this year and I was fortunate enough to have plucked the last of our basil and baby tomatoes from potted plants in the courtyard before they felt the cruel bite of winter.
A brief conversation earlier this week reminded me of something that Fred Savage, a.k.a. Kevin Arnold, said in one of my favourite TV shows, The Wonder Years (1988-93). 'Growing up happens in a heartbeat. One day you're in diapers; the next day you're gone. But the memories of childhood stay with you for the long haul.'
Once upon a time I knew a Greek gentleman who owned a 'fish and chip shop'. Some people thought of it as more of a 'hamburger joint' or 'steak house', while others referred to it lovingly as a 'greasy spoon'. The owner was a humble and kindly fellow, who worked hard, loved to philosophise, and was proud of the food and beverages that he served in what he referred to as his 'coffee lounge'.
This year's harvest of Australian macadamias is almost finished and the season has been a cracker, so make sure you pop some Aussie macadamias into the market basket when you go shopping this weekend.
Join me as I share with you recipes for all seasons, postcards and morsels from my travels, conversations with cookery writers
and chefs, and news on food and cooking.
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NB: I use Australian standard measuring cups and spoons in my recipes.