Monthly Archives: October 2013

Simple joy #2 Five recipes by five award-winning chefs in one fantastic venue

Honey saffron creme brûlée with chocolate crumble, passion fruit curd and meringue by Cafe Polo Co-owner and Chef Adrian Green

Honey saffron creme brûlée with chocolate crumble, passion fruit curd and meringue

Wellington celebrates food by having an annual food festival called Wellington On A Plate. To celebrate its fifth year, FishHead Magazine invited five award-winning chefs to come up with brand new local recipes using ingredients from Wellington’s regional food suppliers. I got the assignment to be the photographer. The venue for the shoot is primarily used for weddings, Boomrock Lodge. It is located atop a hill and to get there you need to take a helicopter (only if you are part of a wedding entourage, otherwise you drive along long windy road up and down rolling hills!)

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Portobello mushroom burger with caramelized onions

Portobello mushroom burger with caramelized onions

One of the joys of grocery-shopping in America was finding the prices of commodities to be so low compared to New Zealand’s. Take mushrooms for example. It is twice as much here (NZ) if not more. So imagine my delight whenever I saw my favorite mushrooms in the fresh produce section of supermarkets in Portland (seems like ages ago now!)

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Simple joy #1 I get to eat food prepared by top-notch chefs.

Elderflower Jelly Cheesecake by Copthorne Hotel Chef Chetan Pangan

Elderflower Jelly Cheesecake by Copthorne Hotel Chef Chetan Pangan

Here are some of the amazing desserts that I was privileged to devour after each photo shoot for FishHead magazine. But not all chefs offer the food to the photographer. I don’t know why some do and some don’t. But I did notice that between the mains and the dessert (I always shoot two dishes for the recipe section of the mag), the chefs might offer the dessert but never the main dish. Oh well, most of what they cook are meat from four-legged animals so I can’t eat them anyway.

To all the chefs who’ve been feeding me, thank you for being so sweet! And to all the readers who’ve been reading this blog, thank you for stopping by!

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Gooey eggplant lasagna with chickpea polenta

Gooey eggplant lasagna with chickpea polenta

Following last week’s survival kit disaster, I found a good use for one of the rusty cans of chickpeas. If you’ve been following my blog back from the time I made a scandalous confession, you know that I drool over Katie Quinn Davies‘ food photography. I also drool over her recipes. She is a rockstar both as a food photographer and as a recipe developer.

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Fennel and mixed beans gratin

Fennel and mixed beans gratin

Living in Wellington is like living life dangerously. We are prone to earthquakes. They said the BIG ONE is bound to happen anytime. Every home has a survival kit. Mine is assembled by my loving partner-in-crime as a going-away present two years ago.

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Stir-fried Chinese Spinach in Adobo sauce

Stir-fried Chinese Spinach in Adobo sauce

Have you ever cooked those green vegetables with yellow flowers? They are called Yu Choy or Chinese spinach. I dream of deep frying those flowers into crunchy crispiness. In the meantime, I have left-over chicken Adobo sauce from last week. A 15-minute recipe is in the works!

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Chicken Adobo | All-time favorite Filipino dish

Chicken Adobo with boiled eggs

I am asked plenty of times, “What is your favorite Filipino recipe?” And I always answer automatically, “Adobo.” (And when I say Adobo I mean the chicken version since I don’t eat four-legged animals.)

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