Every Sunday, well most Sunday’s, me and a group of friends try and catch up and explore different cuisines and places to eat. It started off with my friend Mel and I down Glenhuntly Road in Elsternwick for Korean BBQ, something I had never experienced. From then we vowed to try at least once a week to catch up outside of work to experience cuisines we have never really tried. So far we have done Hungarian, Russian and Turkish and a couple weeks ago we ended up, with a few others, in Oakleigh for a spot of dessert. Oakleigh has a massive Greek community, with Eaton Street filled to the brim with Greek cuisine. As soon as I walked down that street at 8.30pm I felt like I was in Greece. Europeans are know for their late dinners, and judging by the busy-ness of the street, dinner barely just started.
I love Spanish food. I love tomato flavours, olives, smokey paprika and the combination of chicken and seafood. This dish is a some-what of an ‘anything goes’ as it is a dish that is made from inspiration rather than a recipe. When I find myself cooking at home, dinner in particular, I want something that is one pan and easy, although there are some times I want to challenge myself. This dish is also a great family dish as it is easy to put in the middle of the table with a baguette being broken as it is passed around. Like any recipe, this one is easy enough to alter to what you like.
Paella is Spain’s national dish with the original recipe consisting of chicken or rabbit, white beans, rice and saffron and rosemary. Over the course of hundreds of years different types of Paella were created from different regions of Spain. As I have observed, Seafood Paella is most loved amongst Australia, serving it in various restaurants, markets and now food trucks.
Here is my take on the Mixed Paella, or ‘Paella Mixta’ (Seafood and Chicken)
I have decided I would add a new section to HME as a little insight to my home life in the kitchen. Working as a chef from such a young age has been the best and worst thing I have done in my life. As much as I hate to say it my passion isn’t quite there anymore, to cook not to eat. I appreciate cuisines, I appreciate flavours and experimenting with them, but working in a kitchen and the rush of a busy service isn’t as exciting as it is exhausting as it use to be. I use to love the pressure of getting your section ready, now I am exhausted not only physically but emotionally and mentally. BUT in saying that, I love food experiences. I love the culture behind it, the atmosphere it creates and I also love the passion of other chefs that produce such amazing food. A lot of the time I become so inspired all I want to do is go home and spend a week cooking all the cuisines I can!
Lately I have been inspired to do more cooking at home for two reasons;
- Now that I am back living in a share house with people I want to hang out with, and people at home being plentiful, cooking doesn’t seem like a pointless task. Now I don’t have a lot of waste and having to eat the same thing three nights in a row.
- With my upcoming travels in sight I have been inspired to cook a little more at home and cook cultural things to get me excited and inspired to not end up going the tourist route.