Category Archives: Reflections

A freezer stocking frenzy


I’ve been stocking up the freezer. I’ve amassed quite an edible stash. There are 35 double portions of hand-made meals in plastic containers, plus 10 single portions of random things. That’s 80 individual meals, frozen in time.

There’s a good reason for this bizarre hoarding. We have just embarked on a back-of-house extension and kitchen renovation, which will render us kitchen-less for about eight weeks. The fridge-freezer and microwave have been redeployed to the dining room: we’ll be eating defrost/reheat-style for several months. Continue reading


Filed under Food Issues, Reflections, Uncategorized

Raising backyard chooks: why it’s not all it’s cracked up to be 


Fresh eggs are one of the benefits of raising chickens at home

I’ve been on the chook roster at our community garden for over a decade: happily putting their little feathery butts to bed on Saturday evenings and mucking out their stilt-house (it has rafters for straw storage, perches for roosting and plenty of nesting boxes for the all-important egg laying). I’ve fed, watered, medicated and even chauffered them to the vet, on the odd occasion. The rewards have been great: more fresh eggs than I could possibly count and watching with wonder the pecking order and hierarchal shenanigans of a suburban hen house.

But would I raise chooks in my own backyard? Probably not. Unfortunately, plenty of people come to this same conclusion after they have acquired chooks. How do I know this? Because I’ve seen the ignorant ramifications of it more times than I like to remember. Continue reading


Filed under Reflections

Is it time to cut out the C-word and get healthy?


I guess it had to happen some time: the acknowledgement, and subsequent overhaul, of a diet laden with carbohydrates — usually the ‘bad’ kind. I’ve known for a while it’s time to cut back on the bad carbohydrates — or the C-word. The white rice, pasta and bread products that bulk out our meals and are easy fodder on a week night after work have been filling us up, but also filling us out.   Continue reading


Filed under Food Issues, Reflections

Blog hop: Why do I write?

I’ve been invited by the lovely Elizabeth at Dig In to participate in a blog hop and answer the question: Why do I write? Well, why wouldn’t I? I’ve been writing since I was a child: creative writing was my favourite subject in primary school and I’d scribble away in my bedroom penning short stories, poems and a novel, once upon a time. I come from a family of scribes: my sister writes children’s books and my dad is a short story writer. I guess you could say it’s in the blood.

Somewhere along the track a pastime turned into a profession and I became a journalist. I spent my days surrounded by wordsmiths of the most wonderful kind. I’ve most recently turned my hand at media relations, but still write a regular column for a food magazine and review for various restaurant guides. Then there’s The Food SageContinue reading


Filed under Reflections

A survivor’s guide to community gardening: how to not lose the plot


The quirkiness of community gardening

I’ve been a member of a community garden in suburban Sydney for about 12 years. I remember the day that the then coordinator proudly showed me around. He enthusiastically thrust tiny radishes and other earth-encrusted, often unidentifiable, edibles into my hands. I dusted off their soil jackets and obligingly popped one or two into my mouth. Others I surreptitiously dropped back to the ground.

I didn’t quite get it. But I had a romantic notion of toiling a small plot of land: pulling carrots, plucking pea pods, digging up bucket-loads of spuds. Continue reading


Filed under Reflections, The Veggie Patch