In Kawana, Nambour, or anywhere on the sunshine coast hinterland, what better Christmas present than a gift voucher from the Maleny Cooking School! What do you get? Two hours in our cooking studio, overlooking the Glass House mountains, with our chef, Sudha Hamilton, who has worked with Neil Perry, David Thompson and Billy Saunders. Followed by a world class 3 course lunch with Epicurean conversation; take home recipe pack and goodie bag.
Purchase now online at housetherapy.com.au/sacred-chef-gift-vouchers to get your choice of gift vouchers for a wonderful cooking lessons with gourmet lunch in our private dining room, here in Maleny.
Online gift vouchers are redeemable for 12 months – giving your recipent plenty of time to schedule a convenient time.
Give the gift that keeps on giving!
Delicious and educational – you might even benefit yourself if you innoccently ask to taste the results of your gift.
Queensland cooking school offering cooking classes and lessons with a complimentary gourmet lunch.
Queensland shoppers, online shopping for a Sacred Chef Maleny Cooking School Gift Voucher means that you can still deliver a fabulous present to your nearest and dearest right up till Christmas Day. Evouchers can instantly transform your empty gift basket into a treasure trove of personally transformative and very tasty experiential days. Not from overseas but uniquely local and much better to boot!
Sunshine coast residents or visitors come and partake of the fabulous Sacred Chef Maleny Cooking School experience. Purchase a gift voucher for one or two, and make Christmas a special affair for the recipent of your generosity and thoughtfulness. Don’t be a rube and don’t waste your money at Kmart this year.
The fun and inspiring learning of a cooking class, combined with a gourmet lunch, means that your gift will be the stand out present this Christmas. Couples love to do do cooking classes together, as it is more than just a meal out, it is a shared experience. They also receive a recipe pack and goodie bag to take away with them. Lonely guys and girls may meet the person of their dreams at the class, if not they won’t go home hungry.
Put a smile on the face of your loved ones this Christmas with a Sacred Chef Maleny Cooking School Gift Voucher!
Excerpt from – House Therapy – Discovering who you really are at home!
By Sudha Hamilton
House Therapy is now available online at www.housetherapy.com.au Kobo & Amazon Kindle
The Ancient Greeks, who gave us many of the founding principles upon which we base our modern societies – democracy; logic; philosophy; literature and poetry to name but a few salient examples, had a rich collection of gods and goddesses. Hestia was the goddess of hearth and home, older sister to Zeus and first born of the titan’s, Kronos and Rhea, perhaps not as well known today as her siblings Demeter, Hera, Haides and Poseidon. This may have been due to the fact that she was swallowed first by her titan father Kronos, who in a bid to avoid being overthrown by one of his children, as prophesied, ate all his children, she was thus the last to be regurgitated, once Zeus had forced his father to do so. Families and mealtimes are, as we all know, never easy.
The Romans also worshipped her in their homes and knew her as Vesta. The areas of responsibility for which Hestia was worshipped and sacrificed to, were most aspects of domestic life and in particular what we now call the kitchen. For it is around the cooking hearth, or kitchen, that a home, or house, builds out and up. Hestia was always toasted at the beginning of a meal in thanks for the hospitality proffered. She was probably where the early Christians appropriated their ‘saying of grace’ before dinner from.
Homeric Hymn 24 to Hestia (trans. Evelyn-White) (Greek epic C7th – 4th B.C.) :
“Hestia, in the high dwellings of all, both deathless gods and men who walk on earth, you have gained an everlasting abode and highest honour: glorious is your portion and your right. For without you mortals hold no banquet,–where one does not duly pour sweet wine in offering to Hestia both first and last. And you, Argeiphontes [Hermes], son of Zeus and Maia, . . . be favourable and help us, you and Hestia, the worshipful and dear. Come and dwell in this glorious house in friendship together; for you two, well knowing the noble actions of men, aid on their wisdom and their strength. Hail, Daughter of Kronos, and you also, Hermes.”
Interestingly Hestia was a virginal goddess and refused the suits of both Apollo and Poseidon. Perhaps this is where we get the separation of the sexual roles of the wife and mother in the home and the focus on providing nurture and hospitality instead. Hestia was seen as the giver of all domestic happiness and good fortune in the home and she was believed to dwell in the inner parts of every home. She was also the first god mentioned at every sacrifice, as she represented the hearth where sacrifices took place – this is the direct link to our kitchens today and the genesis of the sacred chef. There are very few temples of Hestia extant and this is thought to be because every home was her temple in the Hellenistic world. I think we can draw some intuition from this in our view of our homes being places of divine inspiration.
The ancient Romans were great sacrificers, proponants of the importance of ritual sacrifice, for both state and domestic purposes. Homes were adorned with domestic shrines to Vesta and the Lares, often called Larariums, decorated with images to honour the gods and the spirit of their homes. The hearth, or what we would call the kitchen today, would house a sacrificial altar where beasts would be slaughtered in worship of the gods; and the non-edible bits of the animal would be burnt as offerings. This may strike some readers today, as a fairly gory practice, and yet we do continue, to this day, to slaughter beasts for food and commerce; we merely keep the savage acts out of sight, and out of our homes. Farmers, and people of the land, in some instances still slaughter their own animals for food today.
The Christian religion, some would say, is based on sacrifice, God or Yaweh, sacrificed his only begotten son for the sins of all humanity. Abraham, very nearly, sacrificed his son before the lamb. Despite this, early Christians were actually ‘dead set’ against the Roman practice of sacrifice – mainly beacuse of who the Romans were sacrificing to – with all those craven images of false gods. The Romans, obviously, didn’t agree to begin with, and famously sacrificed a few Christians to the lions in their gladitorial games and circuses. Christians, at this time, worshipped the Christian martyr and his, or her, supreme sacrifice. However, things began to change with the emperor Constantine looking for a new edge in battle with his competing Caesars and Augustices, and the Roman state subsumed the Christian religion to make it its own. Constantine was heavily involved in the founding charters of the Christian faith and his son Constantius would continue to mould and authorise the new Roman faith within the empire.
Sacrifice, over the next few hundred years, would evolve from the blood and guts practice to a more refined metaphorical kind of ritual, drinking wine to symbolise the blood of Christ and stale bits of bread his body. Agrarian cultures still sacrificed the lamb at Easter, and chickens at other special feasting times – and indeed today we still have our turkeys at Christmas – the cooking and consuming of special beasts at significant times is a tradition, which continues today. We do not, however, consider the animals demise as a sacrificial act, indeed we do not consider the animal much at all – unless it is badly cooked and proves to be too tough for our teeth. We do not parlay with the gods, or God, so much today, the observant Christian is thankful for his, or her, meal and communicates this through a state of grace, but we more secular folk consider the consumption of our meat as a much more prosaic and commercial fact of life.
The supermarket, although boldly lit and very comfortably air conditioned, is not a holy place like the Temple of Jupiter, and it does not inspire any real piety. Perhaps an altar or two would not be out of place, and check-out chicks could be like vestal virgins and auguries before the assembled public – I am sure the it would really give the meat department a considerable lift in performance and profile. Are we, as a modern civilisation, in denial about our bloody acts and could we be both more open and religious in our beastly duties? The cold lumps of meat, encased in styrofoam and clear plastic wrap, sit neatly on their refrigerated shelves; neutral toward states of life or death, but brightly lit just the same. Where is the high priest of butchery? He is hidden out the back and makes occassional journeys forward to replenish missing stock.
Do we savour our food as much, as did the sacrificing Romans? Would consideration of the life of an animal snuffed out so that we can consume its flesh increase our appreciation of the act of eating itself? I know, from my own experience, that food always tastes better and is far more fulfilling when one is particularly hungry; and that having worked hard for a meal is more intrinsically satisfying. Our hunter/gatherer roots point toward these self same truths. Fishing and then catching a fish, taking it home and cooking it for a meal. Growing your own vegetables for your food. Hunting and slaughtering a beast for your dinner. A stroll down the aisle of your local supermarket, fiercely engaging with a recalitrant shopping trolley, before selecting your cut of meat from a range of pre-butchered packs, perhaps lacks the same utilitarian ring.
The sacrifice is still being made by those sacrificed for our eating pleasures. We, however, no longer consider the sacrifice being made and for the most part do not own the animals being sacrificed anyway. We own money and we sacrifice bits of our money so that we can eat and therefore survive. Does God, or the gods, keep track of all the money in the same way that we imagine He, or She, is responsible for all living things?
malenycookingschool.com We continue the tradition of sacrifice and work for our appetites before savouring the fruits of our labour.
sacredchef.com.au Our food is sacred because we treat it with respect and sacrifice all the shortcuts and fast processed foods to bring you real food!
Pacific Crown Helicopters of Caloundra, engaged Sacred Chef, to cater for their Christmas Party, celebrating a successful year of sales, service and aasemblage. Seventy five guests were well looked after with canapes and drinks, as they mingled under the gleaming visages of several two million dollar helicopters. Sporty red metallic birds of flight, and imposing black choppers, sat under the hangar roof, as party guests enjoyed delicious food and a fine range of festive liquors.
The Sacred Chef’s attractive waitresses were on hand to dispense cooling drinks with a smile, and to ensure that guests felt appreciated by their hosts, Pacific Crown Helicopters of Caloundra. A well illustrated barperson, with a supanova like personality, kept the patrons entertained and lubricated throughout the night.
Christmas cheer plus delicious, distinctive and divine party food made this evening one to remember, under the auspices of these shiny birds of flight. I may never be able to afford my own helicopter, but at least, on this night, I danced pretty close to a few million dollars worth of mechanical marvels. Sacred Chef Catering, of the sunshine coast, put the polish on an already highly buffed surface to reflect the pure professional poise and charm of Pacific Crown Helicopters of Caloundra.
As I was cooking my most recent Spanish omelette, the other day, I thought about just how long I have had this pan – thirty years I think. This pan and I have made a lot of Spanish omelettes together. We are both a bit beaten around the edges I suppose, but we still make a pretty yummy omelette!
I have carried this pan in my kit bag, so to speak, over continents and across this land – a journeyman with his tools of trade, flipping peasant food that defies fashions and fads. In a simpler world one could make a living with just this single pan – bringing nourishment to the world. Romantic daydreams I suppose but the essence of cooking hasn’t really changed in three thousand years.
If you can take potatoes, eggs and oil, and create a wonderful repast for others to enjoy – then this is the primal heart of catering and cooking.
• 1 tbs extra virgin olive oil
• 6 potatoes, thinly sliced
• 1 onion, thinly sliced
• 4 garlic cloves, crushed
• 1/2 tsp sweet paprika
• 6 eggs
• Salt & freshly ground black pepper
• 2 tbs roughly chopped fresh continental parsley
In a frypan saute your potatoes in olive oil until just
tender before adding in your onions, garlic, salt and
cooking for a further 5 minutes. Beat eggs and paprika,
pepper, salt in a bowl before pouring over potatoes
and onions in the frypan. Turn the heat down
low and put a lid on pan, cook until eggs begin to set.
Flip omelette over in pan and cook the other side for
a further 5 to 10 minutes on a very low heat, Allow to
cool and serve warm or chilled with roast garlic aoli.
Some of you may know that the word diet, from its original Greek origin, refers to more than just what you eat – it actually encompasses a wider meaning, more like your way of life.
Comes from Greek diaita, “a way of life, mode of living.”
So changing your diet involves more than just amending what you eat, it means changing your way of living. For those who are embarking on a change of diet for health reasons, to lose weight or gain weight, I think understanding this broader meaning can help in making your changes more successful.
You may be thinking about becoming a vegetarian, or eating more protein and less carbohydrates, and you may be looking into doing cooking classes to learn more about that culinary dietary approach. I would advise you to remember that it is not just about learning new techniques and recipes - it actually involves a whole new philosophy. A new way of thinking about food, cooking and eating – a new way of being. At this time, if you wish to be successful in your new dietary approach, you need to open your mind and your heart to something beyond what you have been and known before.
Food and what and how we eat are all intrinsically tied up with our earliest beginnings, wound up with psychological spells from our childhood. Many of you would be familiar now with the term “comfort foods,” usually simple dishes or substances that provide emotional succour, by giving us the illusion of returning us to a time when we were little children feeling nourished and safe with mummy. In fact I see many people in the community seemingly permanently locked into these childish diets. The tradesmen still consuming flavoured milk and fast foods, even well into their thirties and forties. The receptionists still eating hot chips and drinking coke for lunch. The many people who are too scared to try anything new and still basically eat what their parents served them, when they were growing up.
You have probably heard the expression, “you are what you eat!” How we eat and what we eat defines who we are, as much if not more than any other factors within our lives. If you are eating mindlessly, processed foods made in factories, then you are not bringing a great deal of consciousness to your diet. My advice is to become aware of who is making your food, as much as what is going into the manufacturing of your food. To really revolutionise the quality of your life, learn how to prepare your own food and learn about good food and real foods. Take control of your life and your body.
The Sacred Chef cooking school on the sunshine coast is a great place to learn about good food and nutrition. We offer more than just new techniques and recipes, we offer an introduction to a new way of living, which is less dependent on processed foods from the supermarket. Making your own food means it tastes a hundred million times better than anything made in some factory for money and you know what is going into it. Awareness changes everything!
One of the most empowering things that you can do in your life is to take control of what you are eating. If you are eating a lot of processed foods bought in the supermarket, then you are not in charge of what goes into your body. How much salt and fat is inside that product and what kind of fat is it? How does the chemical balance, which has been put in place by the manufacturer to preserve that product, react with your own metabolism? There are so many variables to consider when you are not eating fresh food, and equally importantly, preparing it yourself.
Learning to cook and discovering the nutritional make-up of foods can really benefit you in so many ways, including losing weight and feeling more alive. Recently there have been huge leaps in the understanding of nutritional science and how foods are processed by our bodies. The importance of certain essential fatty acids, like omega 3, and redressing the imbalance of omega 6 essential fatty acids in our foods, with too much soy, grain fed livestock and vegetable oils – all rich in omega 6 – in our diets, which is often something like 40 times that of omega 3. We are generally not eating enough oily fish, nuts and seeds in our diets today.
What is the result of this? Too much omega 6 causes inflammation within our bodies and what are some of the chronic conditions this causes? Arthritis – inflammation of the joints; cardiovascular diseases – inflammation of the heart’s arteries; strokes – inflammation of the cerebrovascular; and there is speculation that depression may be caused by inflammation of the brain. Diet/ what we eat and how we eat is the most integral factor in our propensity to develop diseases. A lot of foods in the supermarket do not address this and their prime reason for existence is to make money for their manufacturers – food technology is about durability not nutrition.
Food is your best medicine, not some vitamin pill or pharmaceutical – these are again mainly about making money for their manufacturers – otherwise they would be free wouldn’t they? My advice is take charge of what you eat and how that food is prepared. You will find it can also be highly creative and you may derive some pleasure and pride in the act of cooking a great meal – which is healthy and delicious. You can also save money along the way.
Cooking classes are a great way to discover nutritional information whilst having some tasty fun. My Sacred Chef cooking school, here on the sunshine coast, focuses on preparing food that is both healthy and delicious – you will also receive a take home recipe pack with additional nutritional notes and articles, which I wrote for magazines like WellBeing, Conscious Living and Eco Living Health Aware; plus you receive a free health magazine too!
www.nofreudnoprozac.org for more information about omega 3
The sunshine coast has many unique and wonderful features that you cannot find anywhere else in Australia. Unfortunately a proliferation of outlets providing distinctive and delicious food is not one of them. There are a few special restaurants located here and there but the vast majority of commercial food outlets are serving bland and boring food. The major reason for this is that they are all buying their ingredients from the same companies – who deliver packaged, processed and usually frozen food right to the kitchen door.
Wondered why that calamari/salt and pepper squid tastes exactly the same (flavourless and spiceless) at every cafe/restaurant you go to? Well it is all prepared in the same factory and then frozen, before being distributed to outlets around the country. Despite having Mooloolaba fishing harbour on our doorstep, very few restaurants utilise fresh local seafood on their menus up this way. It’s a shame but nobody seems to care enough to change this situation. I always say every area gets the restaurants they deserve – that is the beauty of the free market after all.
Sauces and dressings are often made from pre-prepared tubs of factory produced stuff. You may as well stay at home and eat the sauces out of the jars that you purchased at the supermarket. The great majority of food on many menus, simply involves taking something out of the freezer and dropping it into the deep fryer. That is why if you have a look in the kitchen at many cafes/restaurants, there is only one or possibly two people in the kitchen – because they are not really doing any cooking, just re-heating. Despite this you are often paying over $20+ for a dish – that is not to say that many restaurants are making a great deal of money, quite the reverse as real estate/rents are way too expensive in Australia and to get anything maintained or built up this way costs a fortune. So the restaurateur is not going to pay more or go out of his way to put something special on the plate unless there is a demand for it or he or she has a real committment to that kind of thing. Did you know that around 90% of all restaurants in Australia are operating on less than 2% profit margins?
I suppose when dining out you just have to hope that the decor is pretty special.
Another solution would be to actually encourage the tiny percentage of illegal immigration we are receiving and get these refugees from Afghanistan to come up here and open some restaurants. It is a great immigration tradition and that is why our Australian cities now have such rich and diverse culinary cultures. The sunshine coast is way too “white bread” and we need some hard working first generation Australians to share their culture and cuisine with us. Enriching our communities and offering real value for money delicious and distinctive food.
As a cooking teacher, who regularly meets people through my cooking classes, here on the sunshine coast, I get to see what a cross-section of society likes to eat and feels comfortable with on their plate. It is interesting to observe shared traits amongst the groups of people, who pass through my cooking school, and it gets me thinking about the whys and why nots. I wonder why most of us tend to eat from a similarly small selection of meals, despite the fact that we now have available in our supermarkets a far greater choice of ingredients than ever before. I think about what food represents, in terms of its psychological ramifications within our lives, and whether these settings can be adjusted.
It seems to me that many of us retain attitudes towards foods, which were garnered in the family home when we were children; and that the apple generally falls close to the tree. If mum and dad liked certain foods and cooked these foods more often, then for many people these influences remain strong throughout their adult lives. A bit like the children, who upon leaving the nest, build their own homes in the same street, suburb or town as mum and dad, keeping extended family close. Food like shelter is a primal need and is intimately tied up with our notion of emotional security.
As we expand the concept of family outwards and it becomes our cultural heritage, food choices again are inextricably linked to our regional and national identities. Here in Australia we can celebrate the rich diversity of our many multicultural strands and this happens most often through experiencing the foods and culinary dishes of these transplanted cultures, like Italian, Thai and Chinese foods – made available by the restaurants and takeaways, which have been created by the sons and daughters of foreign shores.
We are enriched by experience when we allow ourselves to move beyond the close confines of who and what we think we are. Just as our human species is strengthened biologically when we mate and breed outside of those whom we call our own. The cross fertilisation of genes, ideas and even recipes can make us all healthier, smarter and our lives definitely tastier. Our predominantly Anglo-Saxon backgrounds, have unfortunately, cursed many of us somewhat with limited culinary antecedents and if we do not break out of these restrictive walls, then we are condemned to eat poorly and to miss out on the more sublime flavours that life has to offer.
What and how we cook is often a bit like how we make love, we learn from experience a few things and then tend to groove these moves; somewhat unchangingly. Primal activities are a bit like that, not something that we muck about with too much, and what and how we eat falls into this category. We eat to refuel, to derive energy and sustenance from food, but eating is also a profoundly sensual activity. The nerve endings and taste buds inside our mouths feel every morsel as it slides about, and we experience our food in full technicolour, sensorama – if we are lucky enough to be in touch with our full five senses of taste, smell, sound, sight and feel.
So eating is a very personal activity, it is close to who we are, and yet we often eat in public, unlike other intimate activities like sex and going to the toilet. This sharing of the eating experience in communal structures, like cafes, restaurants and workplaces is a ritualised cultural activity. We bring our own mores, likes and dislikes, to this public performance of consumption. I am always reminded of the recounted experience of migrant children in the Australian school yard at lunchtime, as the contents of their lunch boxes were reviled by the Anglo kids because of their peculiar differences. As children we often fear what is not customary and uniform, and unfortunately many of us remain in this childish state, particularly around our foods and what we consider acceptable.
When people form intimate relationships, like marriage and close friendships, they are often confronted with the need to move beyond their culinary comfort zone in a bid to cement the stability of their relationship. The desire to share tastes and flavours is sometimes paramount to couples and their ongoing sense of emotional security. I regularly hear about the compromises being made by one partner or the other, and the effect that the changes to their diets has upon them, both positively and negatively. In fact this can be a major motivating impetus in getting people to come along to my cooking classes. A bit like going into relationship counselling I suppose, with both parties hoping that the inspirational influence of a neutral teacher may magically impart some shift in the culinary status quo of their relationship; and it sometimes does.
Seafood is a commonly held culinary ‘no go zone’, among many of the people who attend my classes. I hear again and again the refrain, “Oh I didn’t know that seafood could taste this way!” Whether they had an unfortunate early experience with a bad cook or perhaps have actually never tried the said example of fish or shellfish, due to the fact that mum or dad likewise had avoided the experience and did not cook these critters at home, the fear based result was the same. We often work out who we are by declaring the things we know that we dislike, “Oh I don’t eat fish, or oysters, or mussels.” I may have made this decision when I was 6 years old but I unquestioningly stand by it today. The walls around this individual are close and in yours and their face, perhaps it makes them feel safe. Eventually however there comes a time when the individual feels somewhat cramped by their stated dislikes, and this is when they often find themselves in one of my cooking classes, either alone or with their partner.
I speculate that the adolescent or young adult who has consciously rebelled against the tastes and predilections of his or her parents, usually has developed a wider and more far-reaching culinary diet – they still may not be able to cook but they may consume more different foods. This individual has broken away from the invisible ties that bind the obedient child to the emotional strings surrounding mummy and daddy. We are all on variable time lines regarding this necessary rebellion, some do it early and some very late, but eventually we all need to break the moorings and swim free; and perhaps then taste the sea.
The Sacred Chef vegetarian cooking class 6 week series concluded last night in Japanese style, with a miso soup slippery with wakame, silken tofu and loads of flavour; followed by sushi nori rolls filled with teriyaki tofu, toasted sesame seeds, cucumber, pickled ginger, wasabi, avocado, spring onion, and even a few with “Love Supreme” buffalo milk cheese. Tempura vegetables were a real delight, with asparagus spears, cauliflowerets, zucchini, baby corns and more; all with that light golden crunch. An array of dipping sauces accompanied platters of these visually satisfying dishes, tamari, shoyu, red wine vinegar and chilli sauce.
The students expressed their appreciation of the weekly sessions, loving the food and the company. “What will we do next Sunday?” was the common refrain. It has been a real pleasure meeting these people and sharing my table with them, watching their enthusiasm for cooking grow and perhaps planting a few seeds, in the form of recipes, which will very likely bear fruit for them down the track. Cooking classes are a lot of fun and a great way to meet like minded people, getting to know them in a good environment. The kitchen is not a place where dissembling and disguise flourishes.
These cooking classes on the sunshine coast have been richly rewarding in the people I have met and I look forward to further chapters eventuating in my culinary adventure. Maleny is a great place to hold cooking lessons, surrounded by lush pasture and rolling green hills, it speaks of abundance and a pantry of plenty.
The next Sacred Chef vegetarian cooking class 6 week series, begins Sat 8 October, and there are still places available. So come and join me for a weekly immersion in new recipes, ideas, flavours and culinary fulfilment.
Olé Spanish cuisine!
The Sacred Chef cooking class on Sunday Sept 25 was a full blooded delicious triumph according to participants: Elizabeth, Joan & Max – who were later joined by by Randell and sons for lunch.
Grilled Chorizo sausage with anchovy and olive tapenade; Spanish omelette made with a medley of gourmet potatoes; roast garlic aoli; local mussels in wine, chilli, tomato and garlic; panfried butterflied whiting fillets crumbed in Parmesan and breadcrumbs; king prawns sautéed in fino sherry, bacon and leeks; roast pumpkin and local buffalo milk cheese, baby spinach leaf salad; tomato and roasted red capsicum, fresh basil salad; and dark chocolate, coconut and mixed nut slice with raspberry coulis and double cream.
A thirst quenching array of wines by the glass, matched these mouth watering dishes and tapas. Good music and good company made this a lunch to remember – the anecdote, involving a large pepper grinder hitting the Sacred Chef on the top of his head, caused much laughter and a sizeable egg on his head.
Sacred Chef cooking class on the sunshine coast will feature Thai food this Sunday 2 Oct 2011.
The Sacred Chef vegetarian cooking class and lunch, was another great success and thoroughly enjoyed by all the participants. We made Thai pastries with tofu, cabbage and almonds; a delicious chickpea lemongrass and sweet potato curry with basmati rice; Mediterranean savoury muffins; buffalo milk cheese and grilled rosemary pumpkin, baby spinach leaf salad; also a glass noodle, sesame veg and fresh mint and coriander salad; plus a pure chocolate tart with raspberry coulis; and a LSA spelt rhubarb and apple crumble.
Very tasty fun and then a relaxing lunch on a gorgeous Maleny day – the wine was good and the music selection was also much commented upon as very complementary. Several attendees are seriously thinking about doing the Vegetarian Cooking Series, running for 6 weeks and beginning on the 8 of October. Cooking new dishes, discovering some new ingredients, working with local produce and having a lovely day – not a bad way to spend a Saturday.
The Sacred Chef vegetarian cooking class, held under the auspices of the inaugural Real Food Festival, was a great success. A dozen wonderful people attended the hands-on cooking class and gourmet lunch, and if my ears didn’t betray me, they absolutely loved it! We doubled the size of our usual class, due to the demand, and made the necessary structural adjustments to make it possible. Some very culinary talented individuals created delicious Mediterranean savoury muffins, which were gluten free, and Thai pastries with a fresh mint raita, followed by buffalo mozzarella rocket pesto thin crusted pizzas, warmed medley of olives in lime, rosemary and chilli. They then created a beautiful chickpea and lemongrass curry, served with basmati rice, and Roma tomato, fresh basil and buffalo bocconcini salad, and to top it all off they made a divine pure dark chocolate tart and raspberry coulis, which was served with strawberries and double cream.
What really impressed me about this group, and the day itself, was how well everyone got on, animated conversation flowed around the communal table and you would have thought that it was a family gathering, without the fights of course. Generous amounts of wine flowed, although all within today’s prescribed levels of moderation, and everyone expressed genuine appreciation and praise for the day. They were a great group of people.
I would like to express my thanks and congratulations to Julie Shelton and Lee Ponder, for the wonderful job they did with putting on the Real Food festival – it was a great success!
We have booked out another Sacred Chef vegetarian cooking class, here on the sunshine coast in Maleny, on the 24 Sept, and are now booking into Saturday 1 Oct 2011, for which there are still a few places left. If you want to have a truly great day, come and partake in a fun class and enjoy a yummy lunch!
The new Sacred Chef Gift Vouchers are a great idea for that unique present for a friend or family member, in South East Queensland. The vouchers can be for a fabulous Sacred Chef Cooking Class & Lunch, here in Maleny on the sunshine coast. Stan Gooch, who attended our class on Saturday, said,
Just to thank you for the cooking class yesterday.
I really enjoyed the experience, having done several in this area, I can rate yours the best I have been to. Your course offered a more casual teaching atmosphere which for me made it a great experience, both in the making of the food and in the eating of it, as well as being in the company of a great group of people.
Thanks also to John for his efforts, for a ‘beginner’ he did a great job.
Look forward to catching up on another class sometime in the future.
We do classes/gourmet lunches seven days a week – so that the recipient can choose a day and date to suit them, they can arrange to bring a friend, partner or even a small group, with them. It is a really lovely way to spend half a day here on the sunshine coast, at our cooking school
Sacred Chef Gift Vouchers are a great gift to give to those who love their food and good cooking. You can have a gift voucher made out for a gourmet meal for two, delivered or prepared onsite, or a gourmet meal for as few or as many as you would like.
EVouchers NOW AVAILABLE – Do it all online!
Vouchers come with promotional information illustrating the goods or services that they provide, making it easy for the recipient to use them!
The Perfect Birthday Present – looks beautiful; easy to post or email; can be used for up to a year!
Gift Vouchers can be for:
- cooking classes
- tarot readings with afternoon or morning teas
- a voucher for a scrumptious, indulgent cake
- party catering
- gourmet hampers delivered
- online recipe book
Xmas Pressie + Anniversary Gift + Birthday + Valentine
A $50 Gift Voucher for a 40 minute Tarot Reading!
A $70 Gift Voucher for a Gourmet Picnic Hamper!
A $100 Gift Voucher for a Cooking Class & Lunch!
A $150 Gift Voucher for a Gourmet Catered Lunch for Two!
A $200 Gift Voucher for a Gourmet Catered 3 Course Dinner for Two!
Ph 07 5499 9280
Sacred Chef Seeks Sacred Waitress, or Waiter, or Waitperson, even. Immediate Start Phone Today 5499 9280 or 0466 281 806.
This is daytime waiting work, some weekends and weekdays!
If you would like to work with the Sacred Chef and have the necessary attributes – some commercial kitchen experience and the ability to be quick and efficient with your hands; to think clearly under pressure and to follow instructions – then please make yourself known as we have some great jobs coming up over the next few days, weeks and months. This is occasional work and usually involves weekends and evenings.
Ph – 5499 9280
Sacred Chef cooking school on the sunshine coast, employs locals and trains them in hospitality.
Vegetarian Laksa with Tofu
4 Birds Eye Chillies
4 Large Garlic Cloves
2 Tbspns Ginger Chopped
2 Stalks Lemongrass Chopped
10 Macadamina Nuts
1 tspn Asafoetida
10 Vietnamese Mint Leaves
2 tspns Ground Coriander Seed
2 tspns Ground Cumin Seed
2 tspns Ground Turmeric
2 tspns Paparika
2 Tbspsns Canola Oil
2 tspsns Sea Salt
Pound ingredient in a mortar or blend in a food processor until smooth. Store in an air tight jar in the fridge.
Laksa with Tofu & Egg Noodles
1 cup Laksa Paste
250g Egg Noodles or Rice Noodles
2 cups Sweet Potato Cubed
2 cups Potato Cubed
2 cups Tofu Cubed & Fried
1 cup Black Fungus
1 cup Baby Corn
1 cup Bok Choy Chopped
1 cup Green Beans
1 litre Vegetable Stock
1 can Coconut Milk
2 cups Bean Shoots
1 cup Fresh Coriander Leaves
1 cup Fresh Basil Leaves
In a large saucepan pour in your stock, add both potatoes and bring to boil before simmering until they are tender. Add in your beans, fungus, corn, tofu, bok choy and cook for a further five minutes.
In a seperate saucepan boil noodles until just ready, drain and set aside still hot.
In a small frypan saute your laksa paste for a couple of minutes before adding to your main pan, along with coconut milk and stirring in.
In large soup bowls place noodles, then fresh herbs, bean shoots and ladle over laksa vegetable soup.
Finish with fried shallots and serve with chopsticks and Chinese soup ladle.
Sacred Chef sunshine coast cooking school, have you been Sudhafed?
The Sacred Chef was lucky enough to be asked to cater for a very special event last Saturday, at Alexandra Headland in the penthouse apartments overlooking the expansive eastern coastline. A fiftieth wedding anniversary is a rare and wonderful achievement, and something that belongs to two special people who have walked a long and often winding road. Congratulations to Margo, who let me know know that she was once a Hamilton, before she married her Man, a wee half century or so ago.
The Sacred Chef, and the lovely Lucy, who accompanied me on this catering bequest, were ensconced in our very own penthouse apartment and we plattered up an array of delectable canapés, whilst keeping an eye on the children – who were a little bored by proceedings, not having the benefit of experience or wisdom in such things. Our morsels of divine and delicious things were pillowed on cushions of French farmhouse buffalo cheese, made by Trevor Hart of the Cedar Street Cheesery. Oven dried cherry tomatoes and rocket pesto; grilled wafers of Chorizo sausage and tomato chutney; smoked ocean trout and pickled lemon; BBQ Thai Duck and tangy fresh pineapple. Sushi; tandoori lamb cutlets; roasted red capsicum and lime salsa; potato Parmesan and rosemary pizzettes.
Lucy walked tall and straight with her platters held high, and a smile like a promise of spring, as she invited guests to sample our wares. The ocean beckoned through the wide expansive windows and it reminded me a little of when I worked with Neil Perry at the Blue Water Grill in Bondi; all that Pacific ocean mirroring in. A beautiful ambience for a special party and days like this make catering more than just my hard work! Thank you to Leigh and Stephen for giving us the opportunity to be part of a truly lovely event.
Sacred Chef cooking school on the sunshine coast, have you been Sudhafed?
Due to demand we are repeating the Real Food Festival Sacred Chef Vegetarian Cooking Class on Saturday 24 Sept
Vegetarian Cooking with the Sacred Chef
Spend a day cooking and eating with the Sacred Chef, at his sunshine coast cooking school – well-known for his divine vegetarian food.
Participants will be involved in hands-on cooking in the cooking studio, preparing 6 dishes: tapas, starters, entree, mains and dessert.
Complimentary wines and mineral water are available with lunch, plus coffee and tea. Gluten-free dishes are also included in the menu.
Participants get to take home recipes, notes, articles and nutritional information. Plus a goodie bag!
Date: Saturday, 24 September 2011
Time: 11:00am – 3:00pm (2 hours in cooking studio followed by leisurely lunch)
Location: Sacred Chef Cooking Studio
843 Maleny-Landsborough Road, Maleny, Sunshine Coast Hinterland
(opp. Reserve Restaurant just before Mountain View Rd turn-off)
Cost: $69 (includes lunch)
Bookings: Sudha Hamilton (07) 5499 9280
Conditions: Strictly limited to 6 participants
* No certified wheel chair access, but we could facilitate the participation of a wheel chair bound person.
Sweet Potato, Coconut & Mussel Soup
- 12 local mussels
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 1 cup vegetable stock
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 birds eye chilli sliced in half
- 1 tbsp grated ginger
- 1 tsp seas salt
- 1 large kumera sweet potato chopped into chunks
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 tbsp finely sliced lemongrass
- 1 tbsp grated ginger
- 2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- 1cup purified water
- 1 can coconut milk
- 1 cup chopped fresh coriander
- 1 tsp red curry paste
- 1tsp sea salt
- ½ tsp ground cummin
- 1 tsp black pepper
- dash of fish sauce
- ½ cup finely chopped spring onion
In a heavy based large saucepan place your sweet potato, stock, water, lemongrass, garlic & ginger & cook over a moderate heat for 20 minutes. In a separate pan with a lid, place your mussels, white wine, stock, garlic, ginger, chilli & over a high heat with the lid on steam open your mussels (5 minutes on the boil).
Blend your sweet potato mix when cooked & then return to the pan where you can stir in your coconut milk, red curry paste, fish sauce, cummin & coriander. Finish with spring onions & ladle into bowls. Arrange 3 mussels into each bowl & drizzle coconut cream over the top, before grinding fresh black pepper to finish.
Cooking school on the sunshine coast, with the Sacred Chef, where the coconut captures hearts and taste buds daily!
Crispy Tempeh with Grilled Tomatoes & Garlic Mushrooms
- 1 block tempeh cut into 12 fingers
- 4 ripe roma tomatoes
- 12 small button mushrooms sliced
- 2 cloves garlic finely sliced
- 1 tbsp chopped fresh basil
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
- squeeze of lemon juice
- dash of soy sauce
- dash of extra virgin olive oil
- canola or light olive oil for frying
Start with your grilled tomatoes as they will require the most cooking. Slice tomatoes in halves sprinkle with sea salt & extra virgin olive oil & place under griller for 5-10 minutes. Meanwhile in a saucepan with olive oil & over a moderate heat sauté your mushrooms & garlic for 5 minutes. Before this is complete heat up your fry pan with some canola oil & shallow fry your tempeh fingers until gold & crispy. Return to your mushrooms & finish with dash of soy sauce, lemon juice & black pepper. Arrange your grilled tomatoes on a plate, sprinkle with black pepper & fresh basil. Add to this a spoonful of garlic mushrooms & 3 crispy tempeh fingers. Serves 4.
Vegetarian cooking classes on the sunshine coast, with the Sacred Chef are a tasty way to transform your eating habits and to feel more alive!
Sacred Chef Cooking School will feature in Sunshine Coast Daily on Friday 2 Sept 2011
Recipes and information about the Sunshine Coast cooking school with the Sacred Chef will be featuring in their lifestyle section of the newspaper.
CLASSES AVAILABLE SEVEN DAYS A WEEK!
Cooking Great Cuisines from Around the World – a 4 week series
The Sacred Chef cooking school on the sunshine coast, is the perfect place for hands-on cooking experience in our well equipped cooking studio, here in Maleny. Fun learning in beautiful surrounds, overlooking the Glass House Mountains, and even better you get to eat what we make in relaxed comfort after the class.
For a great day of sensuous experience and stimulating learning in South-East Queensland, the Sacred Chef cooking school is the ideal outlet for those that love their food and cooking. You will be introduced to local produce, made here on the sunshine coast, like silky smooth buffalo milk cheeses and other great organic ingredients. Coffees, wines and exotic fruits are all to be sampled at the Sacred Chef cooking school in Maleny.
- 2 hours in the cooking studio hands-on
- apron & knives provided
- leisurely lunch follows each class
- fine wines by the glass
- take home pack of recipes & notes
- articles & food philosophy
- complimentary magazine
- goodie bag
Imagine a day where you get to learn all these wonderful new recipes, with some helpful guidance, laugh and cry (in the presence of a few onions), share stories about kitchen triumphs and disasters in the company of fellow cooks, produce seven sensational dishes, before sitting down to one of the best lunches you have ever had. A glass of wine in hand, the delicious aroma of freshly cooked culinary creations and the appetite of the truly deserved.
Purchase a Sacred Chef Gift Voucher for your cooking class and arrange a suitable time & date when you are ready!
The perfect foodie gift!
Maleny’s premier cooking school
Cooking school only one hour’s drive from Brisbane
Sunshine coast hinterland cooking school for budding masterchefs
Cooking school for him and her on the sunshine coast, south east Queensland
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