Category Archives: 2014

Beef Fillet with Périgord Sauce

Truffles make their appearance in Beef Fillet with Périgueux Sauce

Truffles make their appearance in Beef Fillet with Périgueux (Périgord) Sauce

According to Epicurean, this dish is a gastronomic delight.  Périgueux (Périgord) sauce is a famous symbol of Aquitaine gastronomy and, since it is made almost exclusively from truffles it is a very special dish that is not to be missed!  Enough said, I think!  C’mon over and cook it with me!


Just like Tony Martin on the time trial …

Truffles make their appearance in Beef Fillet with Périgueux Sauce

Truffles make their appearance in Beef Fillet with Périgueux Sauce

There will be a last minute flurry of posts for you tomorrow! A little medical emergency interrupted the cooking yesterday and although we are back on track today, I’m a little behind on the write ups!  Join me tomorrow for Roast Beef with a White Wine and Truffle sauce, a lovely Walnut Tart, and French Onion Soup!


In need of a little comfort food?

Carbonade Flamande

Carbonade Flamande

Well it was a treacherous road in the Tour last night.  Wet.  Miserable. Dangerous.  After experiencing three crashes in two days, Stage 5 forced the retirement of the defending Champion, Chris Froome, amongst a day of carnage and mayhem on the wet cobblestone roads of Northern France.

I think the whole peloton could do with a hearty serve of this traditional Belgian casserole.  With beer, beef, bacon and onions, Carbonades Flamandes Traditionnelles is hearty fare to refuel the body and replenish the soul…just what the riders need I think!

You say Perkin, I say Parkin…

IMG_4278Day Two of the Tour sees us heading from York to Sheffield.  Now, I know the obvious recipe that springs to mind is Yorkshire Pudding, but I don’t like to be too predictable!

Parkin is the English equivalent of the Cassoulet or the Pavlova in terms of a hotly contested point of origin.  In true War of the Roses style, the Parkin (or Perkin as originally known) is arguably attributed to either Yorkshire or Lancashire – depending on who you ask!

Yorkshire Parkin is a sweet and sticky cake made of treacle and oats that needs a few days to soften in airtight storage before you eat it.  What you see here is the Parkin just an hour out of the oven (my house smells amazing!).  I am interested to see how it softens up over the next few days … if you are game, get in and try it yourself!

Roasted Rhubarb and Vanilla Bean Crumble with Almonds and Vanilla Bean Custard

Roasted Rhubarb and Vanilla Crumble with Almonds and Vanilla Bean Custard

Roasted Rhubarb and Vanilla Crumble with Almonds and Vanilla Bean Custard

Hello!  So if the crowds lining the streets are anything to go by I think it is safe to say that the Tour kick off in Leeds has been a resounding success!  So too, was my inaugural solo recipe for Roasted Rhubarb Crumble!  A simple, toothsome dessert that proves that sometimes the old-fashioned ingredients really do deserve their place at the table.  Next time you are at the green grocers (or a supermarket) don’t walk past those lovely ruby red stalks of rhubarb … pick them up and go home to make this!  Yum!

Okay, time to strap in!

Image courtesy of

Where did the last month go?  We’ve had the World Cup, Wimbledon and suddenly it seems we find ourselves on the eve of the Great Race.  It seems that for some, too much sport is never enough!  Oh well, at least I can cook my way through this one!  Are you prepared to embark on the culinary journey that is the Tour de France?

I have been busily reviewing and tweaking my list of recipes to bring you over the next 20 odd days of cycling’s oldest and some might say, grandest Tour, but now it seems it is time to commit.  No more dithering as to whether I should bring you the Steak and Ale Pie from Old Blighty or the Treacle Tart – I’ll just do both!

So, if you are not up with it already, we begin this year’s race with a brief foray into the depths of England with the starters gun (do they even use one of those?) set to ring out across the countryside of Leeds.  From Leeds we zoom past Mother Shipton’s Cave to Harrogate,  and then to Sheffield via York and finally bidding England farewell in London before it is off to enjoy the delights of Lille with a little Gaufres de Lille (Waffles of Lille).

From there on we set a blistering pass across the French countryside with brief forays this year into both Belgium and Spain.  Things slow down in the many mountain passes where we get to enjoy traditional mountain food which is honest, wholesome and hearty (and perfectly suited to a cold Melbourne winter!)

Strap in my intrepid armchair travellers, peruse the 2014 recipe index for the delights to follow , and if you’re game, get the saucepans out!

Jusqu’à demain,


One month to go…

Yes, my friends, on the 5th July 2014 we will start the gastronomic journey that is le Tour de France all over again.

Last year, my goal was to keep up with Gabriel Gaté as he cooked his way through le Tour on behalf of SBS (a local TV station here in Australia), trying out his recipes in my kitchen the day after his cooking segment went to air. Well, I did that already!  And while I had very little sleep and loads of fun, this year I have decided to change things up a little.

With the Tour route in hand, I have spent the last month trawling through countless recipes from France, Belgium and England in order to bring you my culinary take on le Tour de France for 2014.  This year while I will be cooking alongside le Tour, just like Gabriel, I will be making my own recipe selections each evening to showcase and bring to you all the regional specialties and gastronomic wonders le Tour has to offer.

Sure, there will be some guys riding bikes, too much lycra and the odd crazy bloke (probably an Australian) draped in a flag running up the Alpe d’Huez in speedos… but more importantly there will be food.  If last year is anything to go by, there will be food for the soul, hidden gems of simplicity that will become week night staples, and that easy celebration of seasonal produce that the French seem to have mastered. This year, I aim to bring honest, classic food from France, Belgium and England to your doorstep.  Sit back, strap in, indulge your senses and if you’re game, get in the kitchen (shhh, you know you can do it!)

Stay tuned to the blog!  Over the coming weeks I’ll begin to populate my list of upcoming recipes for le Tour 2014.  I look forward to sharing my journey with you!

À bientôt