Month: February 2014

Mix of Mushrooms

Now that the heat wave is over I have started to crave foods that are heavier in texture and are not a salad ,Its funny how quickly we tire of the food in season ! This week I had a delicious tasty gratin of mushrooms with a creamy cheesy sauce in a little Japanese eatery called Mizusu. Today i snapped this photo of fresh mushrooms ready to sauté for a light style lasagne. Rather than marry the mushrooms with a heavier style white sauce we simply cover with cream and good parmesan grated on top.

We will steam the lasagne to keep absolute moisture and pop it under a hot grill for colour and browning.


Here is a photo of some different varieties of mushrooms that add great depth of flavour and texture. The gentle enoki simply don’t need any cooking and most mushrooms need a wipe over with a damp cloth and cook with a little butter and oil.

I think a variety of mushrooms adds complexity to any dish – try swiss browns, shitake, enoki and oyster.


Here is a link for a good recipe just skip the béchamel and use cream !!!

Strawberries in Snow



Olivia and I have been having a lovely time watching the winter olympics – so much excitement and thrills and spills.

The vision of the snowfields always calls forth visions of meringue and many years ago I used to love making a very simple dish called strawberries and snow .

I found the recipe in a old cordon blue recipe file – a beautiful lady called Penny handed over her to me her much loved and collected recipes.

The recipe simply calls for whipping egg white with sugar (don’t you love licking the bowl at this stage!) as if you were going to make a pavlova or meringue.

You then add whipped cream and cut strawberries ( I liked to marinate them in kirsch or a nice liquor ) gently fold the three items together and serve – perfect for a warm night

When you take your first mouthful close your eyes and thing of snow!!!

Here is a link to a version of this recipe


Dig a Pony



Caught up with girlfriend Leslie at Dig a Pony a fabulous small restaurant in Yarraville. Ex Sharing house chef Mark Briggs has put together a tasty tapas style menu with a range of small entrees and a couple of mains and some stunning deserts.

Over a nice glass of wine and delicious small bites Leslie and I talked of her wedding plans and the food to serve at her upcoming wedding in March

It was a very hot evening and this dish pictured fitted the bill ! I really enjoy these free form salads that can really showcase the ingredients. This particular salad highlights young watercress, hamon, peach and feta – finished with a light dressing.

The sweetness of fresh peach or nectarine marries well with the Hamon ,when fruit is at its optimum.

Ideas for open salads are

1. Duck with Beetroot 

2. Pear, Proscuito, parmesan and rocket

3. Chicken, mango and cos salad