belinda jeffery's news and events
I’m writing this September update a little earlier than usual, and the weather is still very chilly, however I suspect by the time it’s posted that Spring will have well and truly sprung! Already in the farmers market I’ve noticed that the first spring treats have crept in – there are tiny, freshly-dug potatoes the size of marbles that smell of damp earth; the first green stems of local asparagus jostle with the last of winter’s peas (and what a classic combination they make); and by the end of the month, nectarines grown in the rich soil around Bangalow will be making their debut. I so love seeing and experiencing this change of seasons, and feel very privileged to live in a place where this is possible. I know that this ever-changing bounty completely informs the way I cook, and I so love that.
Speaking of cooking, I have rather a lot coming up these next few months as my new book Utterly Delicious Simple Food (Lantern 2014) is released on the 24th September. Hooray!! It takes me such a long time to write and photograph a book that it sometimes feels as though the actual book will never happen! There are weeks of photo shoots throughout the year, when Rodney Weidland, the lovely photographer I work with comes and stays, and we spend days shopping, cooking and shooting. When this happens my house is turned completely upside-down - cameras, tripods and reflectors lean against walls; trestle tables groan under the weight of all the props we collect; and my kitchen benches and fridge are bursting with an almost alarming array of produce. In fact, as our house is quite small, I can almost feel the walls bulging to accommodate everything! That said, although these weeks are rather exhausting, they’re also incredibly creative and happy too, and I’m usually on quite a high by the end of them (even if that high is while I’m down on my hands and knees scrubbing the kitchen floor!). So, it’s truly special when a book finally gets to the pointy end, as it were, and is published. There will be a number of events happening in October to coincide with the release of the book, and as soon as I know exactly what they are, I shall post them here.
In the meantime, I need to focus on the new book I’m working on, as there is still much to do for it (no peace for the wicked, as my mum used to say!). And I need to tell you about this month’s recipe for the lovely Goat’s Cheese and Yellow Pepper Tart on the recipe page. This is a favourite of mine, and not at all hard to make, but you do just need a bit of time to prepare it. However, the good thing is that both the pastry and the filling can be made well ahead, and put together when you’re ready to bake it. And please, even if you’re not confident with pastry, give this one a try – it’s very forgiving, and really lovely and short. I hope you enjoy it!
To see more of what I’m up to, you can follow me on Instagram.
Upcoming events and classes
In October (20th and 21st) I shall be giving cooking classes at the Accoutrement Cooking School in Sydney to celebrate the publication of my new book, Belinda Jeffery’s Utterly Delicious, Simple Food. If you would like to find out more about the classes, go to Accoutrement
I shall also be holding a hands-on class featuring recipes from my new book at one of my favourite cooking schools, the Pepper Tree Kitchen in Lismore, on Wednesday 8th October. For more information contact Helen Nott on (02) 6622 0180.
To listen to my radio interview with ABC Brisbane’s Mary-Lou Stephens about my latest cookbook, Desserts click here...
My favourite charity
Just A Drop - www.justadrop.org
My lovely sister-in-law, Fiona Jeffery, started this international water aid charity in 1998 when she learnt that less than $2 can deliver clean water to a child for up to 10 years. From this knowledge, and her passion and commitment, Just a Drop was born, based on the premise that if people can be encouraged to give a little then collectively we can make a huge difference. I’m so proud of all she has achieved over the years and encourage you to visit the site and see the fantastic work they do.
Favourite websites & blogs