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Heavenly Hummus

Have you got an hour? Ask a Middle Eastern person about their favourite hummus and be ready to listen long and hard! Hummus is an everyday traditional food all the way from Yemen to Egypt, Israel, Lebanon and Turkey but there are as many variations as there are eaters! At its simplest, hummus combines chickpeas and tahini, then there’s the potential addition of salt, pepper, spices, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil and water. Plus, there’s the question of texture. Should it be smooth or sturdy? We dig in…



Radio Chat – Christmas Desserts

Radio chat: Well, there’s no denying it. The countdown to Christmas is on! I always know it’s coming when my mother-in-law’s annual parcel of Christmas decorations arrives from England…and, indeed, it was on my doorstep yesterday. As though by magic, I’ve got my “ho-ho-ho” happening and my bells are jingling. Every couple of weeks, I drop into ABC Radio Melbourne to chat food. This time, we talked Christmas desserts.


Leo Gelsomino makes Su Fliindeu

Su Filindeu with Leo Gelsomino

I’ll go anywhere for a food adventure – great flavours and fantastic stories have lured me to the further corners of the world. But there are brilliant food stories close to home too – Melbourne is full of passionate chefs and cooks working doggedly, carefully, emotionally to perfect dishes and honour traditions. As soon as I heard that Leonardo Gelsomino from Lello pasta bar in Melbourne had succeeded in a two-year quest to learn how to make su filindeu, the world’s rarest pasta, I knew I had to find out more.


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Spice Biscuits + Booze

This classic butter biscuit recipe is made very special – and rather Christmassy! – by making a special spice mix to stir through the mixture. The spice mix can also be added to preserves such as apricot or plum jam, or ham glazes. It can even be infused into spirits such as gin, vodka or rum – Christmas cocktails, here we come! The biscuit mixture can be frozen and sliced to bake. You can also have fun rolling this mixture with a ‘springerle’ rolling pin with carved designs, or use cookie cutters to make fun shapes.

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Three events for 2020 now on sale in my Signature Dish Series - exclusive behind-the-scenes access to top chefs and restaurants 💥 February 8: @smokeystevenson at @leehofook 💥 March 11: @petergunn501 at @idesmelbourne 💥 April 21: @benshewry at @atticamelbourne. 🎟️Tickets via link in bio or at

My new event series is a way to give you access to top restaurants and chefs. A maximum of 10 participants will have unique experiences in great restaurants, including deep engagement with leading chefs, cooks and producers. By focusing on a signature dish, we give the chef an opportunity to shine, and to share techniques, tips and stories. Attendees will improve as cooks and become more informed diners, gaining cooking insights and learning ingredient backstories. I’ve been working with great excitement on this concept and I’m thrilled to bring it to fruition.

These cracking events follow sellout sessions at @vuedemonde with @hughsallen, @maharestaurant with @shanedelia and @phillippasbakery. Feedback has been stellar ❣️ Thanks to @polperrowines
and @bibendumwineco for support 🙏

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The pasta and the passion. Full video via link in bio.

As soon as I heard that Leonardo Gelsomino from Lello pasta bar in Melbourne had succeeded in a two-year quest to learn how to make su filindeu, the world's rarest pasta, I knew I had to find out more. Thanks to director Greg Elms Photography and cinematographers and editors Jake Reeder and Declan Oppenheim for making this video with me. *** Repost @lellopastabar: 2019 has been a big year for us—being the first venue to bring the rarest pasta "Su Filindeu" to Australia. We have always endeavored to bring traditional artisanal pasta making to the plates of Melbourne. ⁠⠀
A big thank you to @danivalent and her team @jakereederphoto⁠⠀
@declanoppenheim @gregelmsphoto who created this beautiful video! ⁠⠀
#lellopastabar #sufilindeu #rarestpasta #deliciousawars #produceawards #italian #melbournefood #melbourneeats #melbournerestaurant #wine #melbournedesserts #topmelbournerestaurants #delicious100 #melbournefoodie #goodfood #whatsonmelbourne #melbournemade #melbournedrinks #cocktails #melbmoment⁠⠀
Reposted from @lellopastabar

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🌲 Christmas Kueh!🌲 I'm making these little cuties at the @cakebakesweets show today! 🎂 Come and join me - I'll be doing two demos at the @thermomixaus pavilion: 2pm and 2.30pm. The 2.30 session is where I'll be making these sweets - you can even get hands on and make them with me 😊👌 I got obsessed with Kueh in Penang but these are more of an Indonesian-style batter made with tapioca flour, rice flour and coconut cream, steamed in layers. They are super easy and fun to make. FREE ENTRY!! Tastings included 🥰 If you're a member at you'll be getting this recipe on Tuesday ❣️ ...

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Tommy Ruff caught at Corner Inlet, cooked over fire at Port Albert, a very tasty part of a special two-day gathering of chefs, fishermen, and environmental experts organised by @goodfishproject. I learnt so much about Victorian fisheries on this trip, and particularly about the self-regulated, sustainable, respectful, careful, engaged approach of people like third-generation fisherman Neville Clarke, whose boat I was lucky enough to go on. Neville and his crew carefully net fish then hand-sort them, returning undersized or unwanted creatures back to the sea. It is beautiful to witness. Unfortunately, it's hard for chefs to source this fish: our supply chain doesn't support provenance of seafood. What can we do? 1. Know about Corner Inlet - a number of Victoria's commercial fisheries have been shut down due to lobbying by powerful recreational fishers. Let's make sure Corner Inlet's fish continue to be sustainably fished and accessible to all Victorians! 2. Be brave in trying new, local types of seafood - use this guide to learn if sustainable 3. Ask where your fish comes from. Why does Australia import 2/3 of its seafood? I think we have enough sea... ...

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My cover story in @goodfoodau tackles the biggest and most persistent story in food all year. Prominent chefs and restaurateurs keep hitting the news, not for foam 3.0 or vegan ham, but because they're accused of underpaying employees. Many of those who haven't made the headlines are quietly scared they'll be next.

So, is there a way to pay all hospitality staff properly and still have an industry able to turn a profit? Yes, but you might have to say goodbye to those $8 dumplings... Link in bio.

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Carrot kheer is this week's new recipe at Inspired by my recent trip to Mumbai and a fantastic recipe by @anjum_anand, this is a reduced milk pudding, with carrots cooked out in it till they melt into sweet orange deliciousness. It's scented with cardamom and saffron and topped with toasted nuts. There's the barest hint of sugar, which you could leave out or replace with maple syrup if that's your vibe 🥰👍🥕 ...

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I love simple recipes that are more than the sum of their parts and that’s certainly the case with @atlasdining chef @charliesatlas's (ridiculously) Simple Shakshuka Sauce. The ingredients are basic but the slow cooking method gets all the sweetness out of the garlic and shallots creating a sauce with incredible depth of flavour.

The sauce is great with baked eggs, as you'll see here & in the video we made, now on my site, but it’s also brilliant as a pasta sauce or a braising medium for chicken, fish or prawns. You can also serve it as a base for sausages. It’s so versatile and adaptable.

Charlie’s Melbourne restaurant, Atlas, changes its cuisine every few months. It’s an extraordinary feat of creativity. As Charlie mentions, this recipe was developed for their Israeli menu which was so popular that the Atlas crew has spun it off into @lomah_med (land of milk and honey), a casual restaurant that’s in Melbourne Prahran and Melbourne Central’s @ellamelbourne precinct. Try their amazing falafel! Recipe and video at Styling @jules_mckie Photography and video @jakereederphoto @declanoppenheim Shot at @prahranmarket It takes a village! 🙏

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Every month I take small groups for behind-the-scenes experiences in top restaurants and food businesses. It's part of my Signature Dish Series of one-off events. The December edition is with iconic Melbourne sourdough pioneer @phillippasbakery.
The idea with these events is that the chef shows us how to make their signature dish - in this case, it's Phillippa's famous mince pies. Participants (max. 10!) will spend the morning with Phillippa at the normally off-limits factory. With the factory in full Christmas production mode, my group will make mince pies by hand before sitting down for an elegant luncheon that features a Champagne masterclass thanks to @bibendumwineco. Everyone leaves with their own mince pies, the recipe and a key ingredient to make more, a bottle of premium wine and - promise! - a warm glow :) Every event is a one-off & will never be repeated!

Find out more at or via link in bio.

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When I saw the words "Roasted carrots. Mead. Bee pollen" on the menu at @rascal.brunswick, I was a little bit "What the?" But chef @elliott.pinn249 has a way of resolving sometimes unfamiliar elements into delicious and ultimately straightforward dishes. The carrots are charcoal-roasted then glazed with mead, which is fermented honey and water, in this case infused with native-piney Geraldton wax. Goat cheese is piped over it and there’s a sprinkle of fried macadamias and bee pollen on top. It sounds fancy but it’s really just clever layering of sweet and tart, and a novel way to showcase carrots. This snacky veg dish is emblematic of the approach at the new wine bar, definitely something new for Sydney Road. Full review in today's Sunday Age and coming soon to @goodfoodau 🌞 ...

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