Buongiorno, bonjour and “g’day”! (don't you like how they're all the same thing? ~ who knew Australian vernacular was so cosmopolitan???).

Also, "a good day to you, sir/maam" for our American pals, "Ni Hao" to China, and "Здравствуй" to our Russian comrades, "etcetera etcetera and so forth"... (for Yul Brynner).

It’s your old pal Kit (Christof) Fennessy here. I've been writing this blog with your help for ten years, and there's over a hundred and fifty recipes, restaurant reviews of Australia and around the world, and general gourmet articles in these pages for you to fritter away your idle hours on.

Want to know more about me? Friend me on facebook, follow me on twitter, or even look up my New Yorker cartoons on instagram! NB; different platforms not all food related)

A big thank you, as always, to my sponsors at Blue Vapours (use them for all your design and advertising needs - we are waiting for your call!).

Now, what's on the bill of fare today?

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Christmas Means Terrines

For me anyway.

Since discovering few enjoy seafood as much as I on Christmas day, and also considering how we’re not officially allowed to give each other presents since the institution of Kris Kringle, I’ve hit upon a brilliant work around for both.  Making terrines. Bring one for lunch entree, and give people slices to take away with them at the end of the day.

Fussy eaters?  Tell them it's like a sausage roll without the pastry.

Simple, delicious, and unbelievably tasty, your doctor will be doing three sixties in her grave about the cholesterol you’re subjecting your body to.  But you can use for picnics, enjoy with a light red wine, and accompany these recipes with a crusty baguette, sour pickled cherries and of course the inestimable yet humble cornichon (you might also like to have young radishes whole as a side dish, to be eaten with cold butter and a sprinkle of salt flakes on top - fantastic).

Here are two excellent terrine recipes.

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Monday, December 1, 2014

I Love de Cake... Cinnamon Sponge with Raspberries and Cream

OK.  First things first.  I rarely if ever bake desserts.

There are a couple of reasons for this.

The first is I tend to take my sugars via the agency of alcohol.  If I ate dessert I would be as fat as a fool.

The second is, as a "bloke", the cooking of desserts I feel is almost exclusively a woman's domain.

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Sunday, November 16, 2014

Bergerac Restaurant

131 King Street
Melbourne, VIC 3000
Last night was yet another catch up with that irascible gourmet Lachlan Milne.  He’d been dying to catch up for after work drinks since he now works “in the city” – and hasn’t been able to for the last fourteen years, since moving to the country and working for councils out that way.  It was also his birthday recently, and he and I share a predilection for saturated fats and booze.  So, it was a night for boozin’ out.
The most amazing thing is, we made the “old school” discovery of the year… French, fatty and with fabulous steaks.  And in the least likely place imaginable.
Now, read on!

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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Ange Cookson's top tips on the web!


My sister Ange (pictured) has long been an inspiration to me foodwise (not necessarily fashionwise... oh, OK, it was cold) and has recently sent me a couple of emails for links on the web.  Mayhap they might be of use to you?

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Sunday, October 12, 2014

Freo, like a local: “Carpsy’s tips”

In the last of instalment on my recent interstate dining and book tour, I present some thoroughly satisfying tips on the gastronomic scene in Fremantle.

I’d been there before, but there is no substitute for what to do and where to go than a kindly local guide who can show you the top spots.  We were fortunate enough to have two guides when we were there: guitar genius and rock and roll guru Glenn “Carpsy” Carpenter, and his delightful partner (and retail colossus) Cindy.

It transpires that the richest vein of talent lies not in the town itself, but down at the old fishing harbour…

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Thursday, September 18, 2014

Marathon du Médoc

Many thanks to Nino Soeradinata for sending the link to this gastronomic experience; the Marathon du Médoc.  Anyone interested in going?

As appearing in the Grauniad:

Read the article here!

Happy racing....

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Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Sunday, August 10, 2014

The Greenhouse – Perth Restaurant Award

100 St. Georges Terrace
Perth WA 6000

While visiting Perth on my book tour, I asked for directions from a staff member at Dymocks to a good restaurant for lunch:

‘And make sure it’s a good one, because I’m taking a girl on a date there,’ I added, thinking of my publisher lurking outside.

Without hesitation, I was directed only a short distance away to a restaurant called ‘the Greenhouse’.

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Monday, August 4, 2014

Margaret River - Wineries

or: “don’t listen to Ronnie the Receptionist”

Driving into Margaret River was nothing like I expected. I was thinking of a big sand dune with surfers, but the town feels like an Alpine resort, a bit like Fox in New Zealand.

Heavily wooded in surrounds, there’s the river at the edge of town, and a strip of shops going up a hill with restaurants and supermarkets.

We checked in to some serviced apartments just off the main strip, where they had a very helpful receptionist named Ronnie. She marked a few highlights of spots to visit on a map, told us the good restaurants to check out on the strip, and gave us, on my prompting, what we thought would be the good oil.

After a couple of days, however, I couldn’t help but start to question her judgement…

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Sunday, July 20, 2014

Sydney Restaurant Award - Porteño

... or ‘You’re (wood)Fired!’

358 Clevland St, Surry Hills  NSW 2010
ph: (02) 8399 1440

On my recent literary tour to Sydney, I was thrilled to be hosted by Johnny Taranto; television producer at SBS.  In addition to taking me backstage and introducing me to his colleagues, he was also kind enough to be my local guide while in SinCity.  And JT was quite keen to go to a “pit roasted meats” restaurant in Surrey Hills called Porteño.

“It’s the hottest place in town.  Everyone’s talking about it, and apparently the food is fantastic.  It’s slow cooked meat done over coals …”

So we went.  And we got to do some celebrity spotting while we were there...

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Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Brisbane Restaurant Award - the Euro

181 Mary Street, Brisbane QLD 4000
ph: 07 3229 3686

Bizvegas, man! It’s all kind of Brizzy, and a bit Vegasy too.

The first leg of my book tour saw me landing in Brisbane, the beautiful city on the Brisbane River after which the town is named – a river which, in consideration of being appreciated by the locals, only occasionally floods and wipes away all infrastructure.

And the bits and pieces left behind scrub up not too shabbily...

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Monday, May 19, 2014

Majtes herring serving suggestions

“Matjes” means “soused” in German and Swedish (it’s maatjesharing or just maatjes in Dutch). It is also a type of:

“especially mild salt herring, which is made from young immature herrings. The herrings are ripened for a couple of days in oak barrels in a salty solution, or brine. The pancreatic enzymes which support the ripening make this version of salt herring especially mild and soft.”

I nearly know this… I had to look up this stuff on wikipedia / the Google scenario to work out how to make it palatable and eat it. The computer-net also let me know:

1. (of food, especially fish) preserved in pickle or a marinade."soused herring"synonyms: drench, soak, steep, douse, saturate, plunge, immerse, dip,submerge, sink

Soused also means drunk in English. You may find yourself having to have a few stiff drinks for this food, but you will see why it’s worth the effort… Now read on!

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Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Fillet of Roast Beef with Red Wine Sauce

For a Dinner Party with Friends

I cooked a fantastic piece of “rosbif” the other day; served with Stephanie Alexander’s “quick” red wine sauce.

I don’t think the wine sauce is actually that quick (in fact I know it’s not, particularly if you make your own stock), but you can make it the day before.

The surprising thing about this recipe is that the roast veg we had with the roast beef and wine sauce (you could always just do a green salad, or some couscous) took much longer than the meat.

... Usually it’s the other way around.

There was so much, I had to call a couple of friends to come over and help us out with the eating, and it was very gratefully received. So good, in fact, I thought I’d make some notes for posterity.

Let’s start with the early things and knock them out of the way in succession, shall we? Find the full recipe and method below:

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Thursday, April 10, 2014

Lancefield Farmers Market

Centre Plantation, High Street , Lancefield, Victoria

Next one: Saturday 26th April 2014 (Anzac Day long weekend)

Ah, Lancefield.  Lancey one day, fieldy the next.

At the foot of the Macedon Ranges, an hour and a bit from Melbourne up the Calder Freeway (past the airport), sits Lancefield. According to Wikipedia:

Lancefield district had a reputation for some of the best fertile soils in Victoria. Prior to being cut up into small blocks during the early 1970s the region produced high yields per acre of potatoes, fat lambs, fat cattle, wheat and other cereal crops.

Its elevation apparently also makes it very good for growing grapes.

But did you know they had a farmer’s market?  Neither did I; but our “rural brethren” around central goldfields Victoria are all over it like a rash.

Still, this was one of the better ones I’ve been to, and I’d encourage you to go for “sustainable” and organic food, and a nice day out.  Now, read on!

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Monday, February 24, 2014

Le Bon Ton

51 Gipps St Collingwood

Do you like food with a story? So do these guys. The number of things I’d read about the brilliant people behind this establishment are, frankly, amazing.

And this with the place having been open for only a week.  They MUST have a PR agent.

I first read about the Glasshouse Hotel reopening from a post on Facebook by Wally Kempton/Meanie, saying something like “hell yes”. It was a link to a site called the Broadsheet, and reviewed the newly opened hotel.

It was my sister’s birthday recently, and she suggested we go out for tea somewhere in Collingwood, which was great because that meant it was walking distance for me. I suggested this new establishment and she concurred, having already read reviews in Time Out.

“So what’s the story?” I hear you gasp in expectation.

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Thursday, February 6, 2014

Caviar and vodka anyone?

I was having a bachelor’s night the other night, cooking for one while my wife was out, and think I hit upon the almost perfect bachelor’s entrée while cooking, if you like a tope and a touch of class without much work.

WARNING: Excessive alcohol consumption is bad for your health.  This is a medical authority warning.

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The Best Fish and Chips in Melbourne?

Can Kit’s Cucina be stooping so low as to make a call out for the best fish and chip recommendations in Melbourne?

Short answer: yes.

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Sunday, January 12, 2014

Minecraft Cake

What is Minecraft?  I have no idea (OK, I do, it's a crappy video game), but the kids seem to like it.

Here's an easy way to make a cake with a Minecraft™ theme.  Another winner by Cara, though not as good as her Yoda Cake...

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