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Flavours of the West: A Spice Journey at Highpoint

Flavours of the West: A Spice Journey at Highpoint

Highpoint Shopping Centre has once again partnered with not-for-profit social enterprise Free to Feed to deliver the second instalment of its food event series, Flavours of the West: A Spice Journey.

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Cumulus Up City Cellar Door

Cumulus Up City Cellar Door

Cumulus Up Wine Bar is bringing Australia’s wine regions to Melbourne’s CBD with monthly pop-up tasting parties Wine lovers, have your diaries at the ready. Cumulus Up Wine Bar on Flinders Lane in Melbourne, is inviting you to join them in sampling some of Australia’s most exciting and interesting varietals and vintages. The City Cellar Door season runs from April to October 2018. One Saturday each month will see Cumulus Up Wine Bar brimming with winemakers and wine tasters.

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Best Bespoke Victorian Winery Experiences

Best Bespoke Victorian Winery Experiences

Many wine enthusiasts and foodies are looking for bespoke winery experiences for that leisure weekend option. We've picked out some of our best bespoke Victorian winery experiences.

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Cutler & Co. Restaurant A Melbourne Icon

Cutler & Co. Restaurant A Melbourne Icon

Cutler & Co is one of the premier dining experiences in Melbourne with its chic vibe, top notch service, food and wine excellence and ability to stay on top of its game. With a major renovation last year it has only added to the iconic experience it has always been. The World Loves Melbourne was privileged to visit with friends for dinner.

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Exclusive La Sirène Two Penny Farmhouse Ale at Dinner By Heston Blumenthal

Exclusive La Sirène Two Penny Farmhouse Ale at Dinner By Heston Blumenthal

The Dinner team has joined forces with Melbourne microbrewery La Sirène to produce Two Penny, an exclusive Farmhouse Ale that marries old-world British flavours with Australian methods. This is an exciting development in the beer world and for The World Loves Melbourne who rates La Sirène as one of its favourite microbrewers and a local favourite of distinction.

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Lunch at Messer Restaurant in Fitzroy

Lunch at Messer Restaurant in Fitzroy

Messer restaurant has launched in Gertrude St Fitzroy as a unique offering in terms of Melbourne dining, with The World Loves Melbourne catching up with co-owner and chef Ashley Davis. Fine dining at affordable prices is a hot topic and Ashley Davis delivers in spades. He draws inspiration from his trips to Europe and in particular Spain. The concept of a restaurant for the people resonates; you can come for a simple grazing experience with house wine or go big with an 8 course degustation, the choice is yours!

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Yarra Valley Meets Sagra with Innocent Bystander

Yarra Valley Meets Sagra with Innocent Bystander

Yarra Valley Meets Sagra was a top notch event for Melbourne Food and Wine Festival. Innocent Bystander created a unique experience with Circus Oz, Yarra Valley Dairy, and Four Pillars Gin, all on the Sagra's restaurant rooftop for an amazing night.

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Farming Feast With Matthew Evans for MFWF

Farming Feast With Matthew Evans for MFWF

Angliss Restaurant was the perfect venue for an exciting Farming Feast event for the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival. Fat Pig Farm owner and chef Matthew Evans and his wife Sadie shared their experience of setting up the Fat Pig Farm within a small farming community. They also hosted a farming feast at Angliss Restaurant with a shared plate dinner for an epic evening.

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Harveast Festival A Hit At Eastland for MFWF

Harveast Festival A Hit At Eastland for MFWF

Harveast one day extravaganza celebrating Yarra Valley and region was a huge hit with crowds indulging and sampling regional delights at Eastland Shopping Centre. The World Loves Melbourne was invited along to experience the action at this Melbourne Food and Wine Festival event and we loved it all.

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Everyone's A Critic at Cinema Nova for MFWF

Everyone's A Critic at Cinema Nova for MFWF

Everyone's A Critic event at Cinema Nova was simply epic. Melbourne throws up surprises and we would argue it would be hard to find better food and wine at any Melbourne Food and Wine Festival event. A big call - but when you have one of Melbourne's hottest chefs Andreas Papadakis on fire with pairing of 10 year or more old top Australian wines, it's a match made in heaven.

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Taste of Asia for Melbourne Food and Wine Festival

Taste of Asia for Melbourne Food and Wine Festival

Taste of Asia at Luminare was one of the highlights of the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival and a great cause to support in Blue Dragon. The World Loves Melbourne was invited along to experience this stunning event featuring top chefs of Melbourne.

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Entertaining with Maxwell & Williams Designer Homeware

Entertaining with Maxwell & Williams Designer Homeware

Recently we enjoyed a dinner party with friends, and I was able to showcase the latest Maxwell & Williams range. Stylish and practical the Maxwell & Williams range was perfect for the occasion.

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Feature

How to write a cookbook

 

People must think I’m some sort of a machine, having churned out a cookbook a year for over twelve years. Especially when you hear stories from some cookbook authors who take three or four years to write their masterpiece, and then shoot it over another year, working with the seasons.

Sounds like a perfect scenario, but not for me. Once I get going with an idea, I’m off and running, all guns blazing, with the turnaround from inception to holding the book in my hands sometimes as short as seven months. 

This doesn’t mean I take shortcuts – quite the contrary, as I’m a stickler for rigid testing and editing. It’s just that, once the book is conceived, it becomes all-consuming until the day it’s born (quite like having a baby actually).

Let me take you through a few of the steps. It always starts quite organically really; the initial idea can come from something as simple as beautiful produce, a delicious meal, or something I’ve seen on my travels. Once the seed starts to grow, I discuss it with friends and family, and ask them for genuine feedback. My youngest son can be brutally honest (‘Oh, Mum, that’s a crap idea, don’t go with that!’). But, after a bit of to-ing and fro-ing, I land on a concept. 

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Then it’s a case of pitching the idea to my publisher. I’m one of the lucky ones – my publisher is always open to ideas, and gives a guiding hand so that, within no time, the ‘book’, with possibly only a working title, is ready for me to get started on.

Delicious: Feel Good Food from HarperCollins Australia on Vimeo.

I begin with some research, looking into things like what’s trending. If I’m including international dishes, I also like to get some background on them to make sure I protect their authenticity. While all this is going on, I’m thinking about recipes and writing down ideas – often with crazy drawings of how I see the finished dish. When I look back at the end of the project, it’s often hilarious how completely different some of the recipes actually turn out.

Writing and testing goes hand in hand. Some days I’ll test up to ten recipes in a day (yikes, the washing up!) and other days I’ll just test one dish and present it to the family for supper (again, often with brutally honest criticism, but I’m used to it). 

When I’m about a third of the way into the book, I create a mood board to share with the publisher, photographer and stylist. This is when the project starts to get really exciting, as you can start to see the design and feel of the book. 

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I’m also madly trying to write recipe introductions – for me, it is so important to know something about a recipe’s provenance: who developed it, where it came from and what inspired it. It’s also at about this stage that we settle on a title for the book.

Once I’m over the halfway mark, and the dreaded deadline is looming, I go into panic mode. It’s at this time that I’m doing crazy things like eating curry for breakfast and baking six different cakes in an afternoon (which does make me popular with the neighbours). But, to be honest, it’s all part of the fun as the pace picks up.

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Then it’s time for the photo shoot, which usually happens in a studio over a four-week block. It’s manic, as we’re prepping, cooking, styling and shooting up to twelve recipes a day. I absolutely love this part; collaborating with lots of creative minds to create something we’re really proud of is such a joy. Quite often, the finished shot is very different to what I had initially envisaged, but that’s what having a talented photographer and stylist is all about. They can take it to another level visually, while I make sure that it still tastes amazing. With all but one of my books, we have known almost immediately which shot was going to be on the cover – a particular shot will often just stand out from all the rest. Needless to say, the one book cover that didn’t work out like that was a nightmare to shoot, and I have since vowed never to make a Banoffee Cake again!

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Once the shoot is over, it’s down to the hardcore editing, where I’m bombarded on a daily basis with questions: ‘Can you describe the cake when it comes out of the oven?’; ‘How long exactly does the sauce take to reduce?’; ‘How many chocolate curls can you get out of a 100 g block of chocolate?’ 

Then a designer lays out the text and photos into pages, and the pages – what we call the proofs – have expert eyes from food, art and editorial go over them meticulously.

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There is a huge sigh of relief from everyone when it finally goes to print, and an even bigger sigh of relief when, several months later, a parcel wrapped in brown paper arrives and you know that your baby is inside. Of course, there’s always the inevitable jitters and doubts: ‘Is the cover image right?’; ‘Did we choose the right fonts?’; ‘Did we forget to thank someone?’ But I’m never disappointed by the finished product, always elated. And with every book I’m even more grateful that I have been given the opportunity to work alongside a team of truly talented people, and that next year I can do it all again.

Lucky me!

 

Valli Little’s latest cookbook – delicious. Feel Good Food is released late October 2015 and can be found in all good bookstores and online and can be ordered through Booktopia.

Valli Little Bio

WIDELY REGARDED AS ONE OF AUSTRALIA’S most exciting food writers, Valli’s passion for her subject shines through in her writing and recipes, which are invariably imaginative, easy-to-follow and most importantly failsafe. Born into a family of UK restaurateurs, Valli Little was destined to work in the food industry. After a formal training at Le Cordon Bleu in London, she embarked on a career as a food consultant and caterer.

Since 2001, Valli has worked for the highly successful delicious. magazine where she creates recipes inspired by her travels and love of food. She is a regular guest on national radio and the author of a series of bestselling delicious. cookbooks, including Home Cooking, Simply the Best, More Please, Quick Smart Cook, Faking It, Love to Cook and Love to Eat.

delicious. is Australia’s highest-selling premium food and lifestyle magazine. Since its launch 13 years ago, the magazine has led the way in sharing the most delicious food experiences with Australian home cooks, with simple, seasonal recipes from top chefs and columnists, insider travel guides and food, restaurant and travel news. Contributors to the magazines include some of the industry’s most influential like industry's most influential, including Matt Moran, Matt Preston, Jamie Oliver, Colin Fassnidge, Shannon Bennett, Billie McKay, Anthony Puharich, Anthony Huckstep, Silvia Colloca and Mike Bennie. Available each month from leading newsagents and supermarkets nationally. Digital edition also available through Apple Newsstand, Zinio and Google Play.

 

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