Would you look differently at your roast lamb if you had to kill the lamb yourself? This is an interesting and thought provoking question, particularly in the light of the publicity given to recent incidents of animal cruelty in Australia and abroad.
Documentarian and meat-eater, Madeleine Parry, says she was taught how to kill, gut and cook a chicken by her grandmother. Now she wants to explore whether you can really eat meat and still care about the animals on the menu. So she enlists to become a meat-worker at a small abattoir, and works her way up the production line to the ‘killbox’.
After a week of shovelling manure and hosing blood, plus all the other dirty work in between, Madeleine learns how to stun and then kill a sheep. The following day, a cow. And later, a pig, on which she says pigs don't let you forget that you are killing them.
This is raw, totally down to earth reality TV that is likely to make viewers think long and hard about ethical eating. And that's a really good thing!
Meatwork screens on ABC2 on Sunday, 11 November 2012 at 9.30pm and is part of an ABC TV and Screen Australia initiative called Opening Shot, where five young filmmakers were given the chance to make a documentary to be broadcast on ABC2.
The domestic goddess, Nigella Lawson, is back - in the stunning new series, Nigella Kitchen - a show that emanates from the heart of the home and is bubbling over with fast, fabulous, feel good food for every occasion. With her winning mix of passion, enthusiasm and greed, Nigella is in the kitchen cooking food for modern living that you can and will want to make all the time, whatever the situation.
Episode One, titled 'You Know it Makes Sense' screens on ABC1 on Tuesday, 29 November at 8.00pm.
Episode One of Season Two of the popular SBS program, Gourmet Farmer with Matthew Evans, aired on Thursday, 25 August at 7.30pm. I have already booked regular seats on the living room sofa for the next little while and am looking forward to learning more about Matthew's life on Puggle Farm in Tasmania, with his partner, Sadie, and little son, Hedley.
I've always been fond of Matthew. The former SMH food critic also happens to be a great chef (ex-Canberra), a gentleman and just a down-to-earth, nice kind of guy. Having moved to Tassie, which many food enthusiasts revere as the land of milk and honey, Matthew turned his hand at farmer and experiencing all that goes with it. Gourmet Farmer follows his adventures from paddock to plate.
Matthew was born in a mining town in southern Wales and moved to Canberra at the age of four. From about that time on, he says "he fell in love with food at [his] mother’s apron strings". Matthew is the author of eight books on food, including the authoritative Real Food Companion and his autobiography Never Order Chicken on a Monday. He writes regularly for Delicious, Feast and Grazia magazines, and shares a market stall, Rare Food, with his good mate Ross O’Meara, specialising in old and rare breed pork products, amongst other goodies.
Afternoon TV is generally dull, but one of the more colourful programs is Ready Steady Cook, where some of Australia's top chefs go head to head against guest contestants.
The bubbly Janelle Bloom makes frequent appearances, in between writing cookbooks and her regular spot on Radio 2GB. When asked her thoughts on Ready Steady Cook, Janelle says, "It is challenging and choatic, but the most fun I've ever had in a kitchen and the best job I have ever had." This is evident by Janelle's huge smile on every episode.
Ready Steady Cook goes to air at 2.00pm from Monday to Friday. For more information, visit the web site
Coming to the screen at your place. Book your seats on the sofa!