The cook next door

carousel cookbook

Nicky at delicious:days started this meme and I can’t complain because it’s kind of my fault in a way. As you sow…Anyway I would accuse Lyn of Lex Culinaria of being the teeth in my buttocks but she made me a cake so I can’t mix the metaphor that feeds me. Apparently this is a way of getting to know me but the food me but there’s so much more you could find out about the other me. Go on ask me about something else like ahm erm…

What is your first memory of baking/cooking on your own
I grew up on a farm in the rural idyll of Muntadgin. Despite access to a large number of things like guns, vehicles, and power tools as a child, I remember being quite excited when we got our microwave. I don’t think we had anything else that went “beep” at the time. Except for my pong game, which kind of went “bwok”. Child geek, I managed to set the clock and boil a cup of water before “Dad came home”.

This ramped up to a much acclaimed “Microwaved Rice Pilaf” before settling down to a steady routine of “Microwaved Cabbage with Pepper”. It’s sad that such a thing of wonder is now relegated to defrosting and hot water for gargling with salt.

Who had the most influence on your cooking?
When I was a child I had a book and in that book was a bear and the bear lived in this house with a winding staircase. This impressed me because we didn’t have a staircase when I was a kid. No-one did. Which made slinkies kind of a disappointment. Anyway this bear made soup for his animal friend (maybe a rabbit) and used carrots and he also had these herbs which he was chopped up with a wooden handled mezzaluna and at that point I thought, if a bear could make a carefully prepared meal, then so could I.

Do you have an old photo as evidence of an early exposure to the culinary world and would you like to share it?
No but here’s a pic of me bringing apartheid to its knees in ’88.
sharpville six
They got a reprieve!

Mageiricophobia – do you suffer from any cooking phobia, a dish that makes your palms sweat?
Cake sized amounts of sugar and mandolines.

What would be your most valued or used kitchen gadgets and/or what was the biggest let down?
Valued- Wusthof Trident chef’s knife
Biggest Let Down- What’s that Toni? Oh, our wedding night, oh ha ha I don’t think.
Tofu making kit, just too hard and my blender’s pretty crap with anything tougher than a milky smoothy.

Name some funny or weird food combinations/dishes you really like – and probably no one else!
Always been partial to a bit of roadhouse cheese inside a sausage.

What are the three eatables or dishes you simply don’t want to live without?
Butter, Mushrooms, Yeast

The quickies section:

Your favourite ice-cream?

You will probably never eat?
Fois gras

Your own signature dish?
I’d like to think I make a very nice seafood chowder.

Three people….
I’ll have to think.

Hokay, an under no obligation hello Perth: diverse of background Ted of TEdALOG Lite (up!); would do it very nicely Karen Cheng ; and man friday, Two Minute Noodle Cook.



  1. teddles_russ’s avatar

    Me, I learned to cook once I left home because Mum was not a great cook, and the one thing I still avoid most is mutton, because, living on a wheat/sheep farm, it’s the one thing we always got plenty of, and of course it was the thing she was worst at preparing.

    Life can be so cruel…

  2. Kevin’s avatar

    Slinkies were overated anyway, a microwave is much more fun. Especially when you’re still learning to use it and things sometimes explode.

  3. FXH’s avatar

    Ants – I came across this amazing site the other night whilst looking for Lamb and Couscous simple recipes. I had never seen it before. I haven’t cooked anything from it yet but those few recipes I did look at seemed to “look” as if they would be ok. Except the ones that looked a bit too simple, or that I wouldn’t cook, but you know what I mean.

    It looks like a labour of love by one person but is a bit short on descriptive background etc and ratings on dishes actually cooked and sampled. But it does seem to me to have great possibilities if only s/he could add reader comments of trying recipes. The site already has a nice raft of geeky touches, such as auto recalculating number of people and ingredients measures, print function, search etc.

    I’d be interested if you had time to give it a squiz and make a quick assessment of cookability and reliability and taste.

    Food Down Under

  4. Robert’s avatar

    I can vouch for your signature dish, Anthony. As you know, I’m not much of a seafood person, but I managed a whole bowl of your chowder. That’s got to count for something…

  5. deborah’s avatar

    Such a complex creature…

    I am thinking my blog has been making you break out into a sweat with all the sugary dishes.

    I was telling another blogger, that for a little while all I’m going to blog about is meat!

    I also understand the microwave love. I was the same with our jaffle maker circa 1986 and the crockpot circa 1988. Did you ever has the Soda Stream? Oooh how I loved my soda stream!

  6. Anthony’s avatar

    You’re getting tagged me matey (this meme not the plastic ones). Mutton was one of my mum’s best dishes. For the rest either I was a fussy kid or there was something in it I didn’t like. Egg and asparagus casserole? Life *is* cruel, a farmer’s wife that wasn’t keen on cooking

    They were. I was a by the book lad, if it wasn’t in the Sharp Carousel Microwave Book it didn’t go in there. Still slinky, microwave – makes you wonder…

    Detailed ingredients, clear instructions, functional add ons…far too functional. Where are the irrelevancies, the typos, the pretensions? Some of the recipes pop up elsewhere. Do we need a Turing test?

    Once a humble sinner people! Can I get a witness!

    I think complexity implies some underlying structure. Messy, is propably closer.

    All meat! Grrrrrr!

    Oooh yes jaffle amker with the waffle iron attachments. And of course the Soda Stream, it would crap all over the place if you put the syrup in first.

  7. Reid’s avatar

    Hi Anthony,

    Fois gras? Of all people, I thought that you would like it, even if just a tiny bit. I’ve eaten it once before, but I can’t really recall the flavor so it must not have been too memorable.

  8. Anthony’s avatar


    I’vehad some in a can as pate but that’s not really the real deal. Would love to but just seems to go a bit far on the doing things that shouldn’t be done to animals front so I don’t want to get hooked and have to make lame rationalisations.

  9. Anthony’s avatar

    Sorry Reid, *Reid*

  10. teddles_russ’s avatar

    anthony, – the meme lives! Now I go to die for the night…

  11. Anthony’s avatar

    Thanks Ted.

    May you be resurrected in the morning.

  12. J’s avatar

    hi anthony, great post! my stomach hurts from laughing too much…on a separate note, took liberty of answering your cookbook meme questions whilst responding to another cookbook meme. fear i may have broken some sort of unspoken meme law? cheers,j

  13. Anthony’s avatar

    BEWARE sir! The dark prince moves in the most CUNNING of ways.

    Behold the one true book meme that arose from St Chubby the Hubby is both good and true and formed naturally from the pages of foodbloggery: Cookbooks

    But beware the ANTI-MEME, not a food blog meme at all but forged in the fires of MOLOCH from the soul of a NON-FOOD Book Meme with the TRICKERY of COOK attached.

    You mix in dark arts my friend. BEWARE. May your site not be torn apart in the final battle between GOOD and EVIL.

  14. J’s avatar

    uh-oh. suspected something was up – too vague, too easy, too non-specific to be of authentic provenance. realize the manifest error of my ways. urm…oops?

  15. Anthony’s avatar

    Crux sancta sit mihi lux Non draco sit mihi dux Vade retro satana Nunquam suade mihi vana Sunt mala quae libas Ipse venena bibas

  16. J’s avatar

    phew…that was a timely exorcism, sant’antonio

  17. Anthony’s avatar

    Anthony is the patron saint of the lost.

  18. Erika’s avatar

    I can only cook with microwave :D…Very easy and quick.

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