Freshly dug potatoes (istockphoto)
I love a good spud. I have done since I was a kid. Mashed potato was always a firm favourite. I would look forward to it so much – on the side of a casserole, or a Sunday roast lunch – that i’d be close to tears if it turned out to be lumpy.
If I could see it was a rush job when my mother was making it – because she was plating up six meals, getting five people to the table, and dealing with the last minute chaos of preparing a large family meal – I’d get fidgety and anxious. Continue reading
Baharat-spiced lamb meatballs. Photograph by Craig Kinder
This recipe is from Russell Blaikie’s recently released cookbook Must Eat (Read The Food Sage’s book review). Blaikie is the chef extraordinaire behind the Must wine bars in Perth and Margaret River.
Baharat is a Middle Eastern spice mix and the perfect partner for lamb. Blaikie recommends using lean lamb, and to moisten the breadcrumbs with wine before combining them into the mix – which ‘lightens’ the meatballs.
To all meatball lovers out there, this Baharat-inspired recipe creates spice-packed mouth-bombs that are difficult to resist. The recipe makes 30 … what a shame!
Must Eat by Russell Blaikie
I used to be an impulsive cookbook purchaser. I’d see one that looked good, have a quick flick through, and buy it if a couple of the recipes looked enticing. But lack of room on the bookshelf, laundry bench, and an entire kitchen cupboard put an end to such reckless spending.
I vowed never to buy another recipe book on a whim. The new rule was that I had to wait, research the book, read reviews, look at it – longingly – at least half a dozen times, after which I could splurge if I still felt the urge – and more often than not, I didn’t.
The strategy was working well until I discovered Must Wine Bar in the Margaret River, the regional wine bar and bistro belonging to renowned West Australian chef Russell Blaikie. Continue reading
Must wine bar, Margaret River
Must bistro and wine bar has got a captive audience at Margaret River. The town hosts two large, boisterous pubs, several providores, a couple of restaurants and cafes, and a fudge factory on the main drag, but little to write home about when it comes to small, stylish dining options with a boutique bistro feel.
The local movers and groovers must have popped Champagne corks when Must Margaret River filled the void in the West Australian wine region two years ago.
Must is the sibling of the decade-old hotspot of the same name but even bigger fame in Highgate, Perth, and it has certainly cornered the market – there’s nothing else this suave and sophisticated within spitting distance of Margaret River’s swanky wineries. Continue reading