Simple Provisions

Food does not need to be fancy to be celebrated

Preserving food at the end of Summer requires respect for tomorrow’s hunger. The effort of chopping up fruit, sterilising jars and dabbling in science to capture the sweetness of the season brings no immediate gratification. But when the chill of the evening air takes your breath away and the sun is keeping its distance, a …

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The kitchen is a place of transformation. We labour to peel, chop, bake, boil, fry and combine ingredients to convert them into new states of delicious being. Often, it can be quite an involved process, taking hours to turn the flesh of an animal into succulent fall-off-the-bone meat or days to preserve the summer harvest …

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It’s summer holidays. The days are long, hot and the markets are filled with colourful fruit and veggies bursting with sunshine. It’s preserving season, that time of year when it’s possible to capture a season in a jar and save it for shorter, bleaker days ahead. Lemon tree branches are currently heavy with golden fruit. …

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The furnace that powers the NYC summer is burning at full capacity this week. That, combined with the fact that my apartment is in various stages of disarray in preparation for the international move, has meant that cooking has been nonexistent. I’ve also been thoroughly enjoying goodbye dinners at some of my favourite restaurants (Momofuku, …

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On a late-summer evening many years ago, I followed my Lonely Planet guidebook down a tiny street in Nice, France to find somewhere to eat socca, a traditional chickpea pizza served on the shores of the Mediterranean. The street was lit by the warm light of a restaurant that vibrated with the happy noises of …

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I aspire to country-style hospitality, where there’s always a cake cooling on the table and a pot of tea on the boil for visitors who “pop in”. But modern, city life doesn’t seem conducive to the well-catered pop-in. It’s more likely that I’ll have rubbery carrots lingering in the crisper and a half-eaten bag of …

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A well worn cookbook is a map of taste. Flip through the pages and you’ll find the spine naturally giving way at favourite dishes, the recipes marked with notes or greasy fingers. It reveals the cooking history of it’s owner and holds memories in those oil splattered pages of shared meals and good times. One …

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The first ears of corn appeared in the green market last weekend, nudging strawberries and peas out of their starring roles and sending them back to the chorus. Corn at the market heralds the arrival of Summer, which means the city is gearing up for Fourth of July celebrations. Fireworks will rise and explode over …

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The key to simple, quick and delicious meals is a well-stocked pantry. If you’ve got the basics of a meal already in the cupboard, you can spend less time running up and down the supermarket aisles and more time picking the best of the fresh ingredients on offer. Many of my favourite cookbooks start with …

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