In 2010, Callum Hann nabbed second place in the second series of MasterChef Australia and, despite being just 20 years old, wowed the judges and viewers at home with his exceptional cooking skills, as well as a genuinely delightful personality! Callum is the founder of Sprout Cooking School in Adelaide and is now travelling around Australia sharing his love of food and cooking with young people all over the country. His second cookbook, I'd Eat That!, has just been released and I greatly enjoyed having a conversation with Callum about the book, and food and cooking in general.
'I blame milk. That unassuming, ubiquitous white substance that we take for granted in Australia. It was cow's milk that turned my life around, and set me on a path that has changed not only my way of living but also my world view. Yes, that innocent stuff that comes from the bovine udder was the inspiration to help me make the move from gritty, urban inner Sydney to impossibly lush green Tasmania. From a clean and cushy life to one that involves—quite literally—mud, blood and tears. And to the non-food types among you (apparently there are some out there), the story seems more unlikely with every telling.'
We stopped by the Asia Bookroom at the weekend and, while browsing the many shelves in this unique and interesting store, I began to reflect on how books—that is, the old-fashioned kind printed on paper as opposed to ebooks—stimulate our in terms of --
For me, it was genuinely refreshing to watch Hayden Quinn (who some may best remember as the 'surfer dude') on series 3 of MasterChef Australia in 2011. His food was always packed with flavour, looked fresh and vibrant and, from what the judges on the show said, tasted delicious as well! So it's little surprise to have received a copy of his cookbook, Dish it Up, subtitled 'healthy food you'll love to share', released this month by Murdoch Books.
'Veganissimo takes vegan cooking to an exciting new level. It fills the need for a book that not only enhances one's joy in being vegan by showing you how to prepare mouthwatering vegan food, but also helps you maintain a healthier diet.'
'I'm happy when I'm surrounded by family and friends, and some good tucker!'
'This is much more than a recipe book. It is a gastronomic tour of Italy, from the Alpine beauty of Trentino-Alto Adige to Arab-influenced Sicilia (Sicily), and from the prehistoric Italici — the first people to occupy the peninsula -- to the people who make up the rich culinary tapestry of the present day. It is a long and absorbing history, and an introduction to the landscape and produce of each of Italy's 20 provinces. I hope you enjoy travelling and tasting with me across time, and through the varied and beguiling regions of Italy.'
'Our grandparents knew how to judge for themselves whether a food was spoiled, whereas in our supermarket-dominated world, governed by use-by and sell-by dates, it is easy to abandon the fundamental sensual skills of looking and smelling. But once you enter the world of preserving, it is important to re-hone your senses, as well as to understand and feel comfortable with what you are doing.'
— Katie and Giancarlo Caldesi in the introduction to The Gentle Art of Preserving
I've always said that if there was such a thing as reincarnation, I would love to come back as Maggie Beer — for here is a gentle woman who is delightful, gracious, generous, loves a celebration, has a genuine zest for life, and is a beautiful cook too!
'Last summer, near high tide, something drove me to swim from Mother Ivy's Beach, across to the cove on Trevose Head to where my father died. As I swam closer, I became increasingly uneasy: the waves seemed bigger, the sea deeper and darker. I almost felt I had to turn back. There's no path down from the top, and I remembered that they had to launch the lifeboat to recover his body from the seas, so there would be no easy way out...'.
Good Things interviews with noted food writers, and cookbook reviews. Many of the books showcased are from my own shelves, others have been sent to me for review, as acknowledged.