November is festival month – this weekend Auckland hosts Taste of Auckland
What a week...It’s been such a trying few days for many people in New Zealand that it seems frivolous to talk about food, wine, travel and Christmas gifts. This latest earthquake has seen many lose their homes, their businesses, and face nights of worry and uncertainty sleeping with their children in cars, not knowing what to expect next. It is not vacuous to say we feel for them, and that our prayers are not empty ones, but to quote those remarkable people who endured the 2010, 2011, and 2013 quakes, you have to carry on and get life back to normal as soon as possible.
The content for this week’s newsletter was planned before the events of Sunday evening, and in the right spirit, I will carry on with it.
The inclement weather this past weekend didn’t stop people getting about on Waiheke’s Garden Safari and seeing some of the remarkable private gardens on the island. The whole event is a fund-raiser – Waiheke’s biggest (Jassy Dean Trust) – and it was enlightening to see the huge number of volunteers who gave up hours of their time to make it happen. I didn’t get to see any of the gardens as I was stationed at Rangihoua Olive Estate, but the feedback from people who did was very positive.
I’m involved with another festival this week – Auckland’s premier food event, Taste of Auckland (in partnership with Electrolux). Taste of Auckland runs over 4 days (Thursday to Sunday) and showcases the food of more than a handful of our top chefs and emerging talents in restaurant food stalls and masterclasses. There is plenty of artisan food on offer, but it’s not all food and wine – there’s food and beer, too! I will be hosting a new event, the Electrolux Chef’s Secrets, where punters get to cook with their cheffing idols (think Giulio Sturla from Roots restaurant, Monique Fiso from Hiakai, Mark Soper from Wharekauhau Country Estate, Megan May from Little Bird Organics, Ganesh Raj from The Tasting Shed and Kyle Street from Culprit).
From those lofty heights to my Waiheke kitchen – I’m sharing a recipe for a quick and gorgeous way with lamb and vegetables. It’s easily done on a barbecue, but it can also be cooked indoors in a ridged grill pan. Char-grilled LambChar-grilled Vegetables And here's a link to the recent edition of Opportunita, the bi-monthly newsletter from the Italian Chamber of Commerce in New Zealand. It’s a bumper edition and will keep you up to date with all things Italian in New Zealand. Hopefully, those who made enquiries about the trip I am hosting to Puglia in May 2017 have received the itinerary and are salivating at the prospect. You can find more information here Puglia trip and more info here Puglia with Julie Biuso
I hate to mention Christmas but it is fast approaching… Keep in mind that the Furi knives and my cookbook Julie Biuso At Home make great gifts – just remember to allow time for ordering and postage. Also, there are still dates available for Christmas get-togethers with Shared Kitchen. And, of course you can always book a private class if the scheduled class dates don’t suit. Cooking Classes on Waiheke This is long enough … if you got through it all, thank you. And remember to send blessings to those who are less fortunate. Julie