Take a wok on the wild side with me

Welcome to A Wok on the Wild Side.

Please join me in my adventures in the culinary world and all things gastronomic.

Food, travel, books, music and the arts are all close to my heart, not to mention my tastebuds!

I've enjoyed tasting and testing recipes since I was a child in primary school who insisted on helping Mum stir her cake batters and test her bread and butter puddings for afternoon tea.

Bastille Day 2018

Bastille Day 2018

Bastille Day is the common name given in English-speaking countries to the national day of France, which is celebrated on the July 14 every year.

In French, it is formally called la Fête nationale, The National Celebration.

The French National Day is the anniversary of Storming of the Bastille on July 14, 1789, a turning point of the French Revolution, as well as the Fete de la Federation, which celebrated the unity of the French people on July 14, 1790.

Celebrations are held throughout France.

Book reviews

Book reviews

101 Things to do instead of worrying about the World

By Felicity Brightside

Published by Faber

Do you feel like not getting out of bed sometimes?

With political pandemonium, nuclear apocalypse, climate change, dementia, the dangers of sitting down, traffic jams and more, worrying about the world has become a national pastime for some.

Hey, how about thinking positive for a change?

Review - Pierrick Boyer Patisserie Cafe

Pierrick Boyer Cafe Patisserie

It is only fitting that chef/owner Pierrick Boyer of Pierrick Boyer Cafe Patisserie in Prahran was trained in Versailles, home of queen Marie Antoinette of France, who was rumoured to have said, "Let them eat cake."

I had sampled Pierrick's exquisite cakes and pastries when he worked in Melbourne city and was delighted when he opened his new cafe just across the road from Prahran Market.

Melbourne Good Food and Wine Show 2018

Gourmets, rejoice!

At the Good Food & Wine Show this weekend, you can enjoy a fabulous time with friendsand fellow foodies, discovering new foods, wines and the latest products to hit the market.

Awaken your tastebuds with samplings from a myriad local and international exhibitors and find new recipe ideas from some of Australia’s best chefs.

Visit the Princess Cruises Theatre and check out what double trouble means.

Recipe for Southern Fried Okra

I had heard of Felix Heng's cooking long before I met him.

He was a good friend and classmate of my beloved late brother in law, Alan and it was Alan who taught him how to draw when they were in primary school.

A peranakan (Straits Chinese), Felix enjoys everything cultural and culinary.

His Singaporean creations and cakes brought a lot of comfort when Alan was suffering from his illness.

Felix has generously shared a recipe with us.

Mother's Day 2018

Mother's day 2018

"Mama was my greatest teacher, a teacher of compassion, love and fearlessness. If love is sweet as a flower, then my mother is that sweet flower of love," says singer Stevie Wonder.

This Mother's Day I asked my friend Emily Catherine what her mother means to her.

"My mum Teresa was born to be a mum. She is kind, selfless and always puts others first. "She is warm, nurturing and positive and always there for me whenever I need her.

Easter 2018

Easter 2018

Happy Easter to everyone!

Take a break from overdosing on hot cross buns and chocolate eggs and try this recipe from Australian Pork for your Easter Sunday dinner.

For more recipes go to www.pork.com.au

Roast pork leg with crackling, roasted vegetables and apple sauce

Serves 4

1.8-2kg pork leg roast, boneless, rind on

oil

salt

To serve

roasted potatoes, roasted carrots, roasted parsnip, roasted pumpkin, steamed beans, steamed broccoli

Apple sauce

Recipe - Cumquat jam

Cumquat jam

My friend Julie Walker recently gave me a bunch of cumquats (also known as kumquats), fresh from her tree.

I thought the intense citrus flavour would be best enjoyed by making the fruit into a jam, so here is my own recipe for cumquat jam.

Some recipes involve boiling and then straining the fruit, squeezing the pulp in a piece of muslin and then adding sugar.

It sounded all too fiddly for me and I prefer my jam with more body, anyway, so here's my take, jam-packed with pulp and all.

Thanks, Julie!

1 cup cumquats, washed

Recipe - Chicken larb

I was wondering what to cook for dinner (my daily dilemma) when I saw chicken mince on special and decided to cook up that Thai favourite, chicken larb or salad.

Served with steamed rice, it was the perfect dish for a warm summer evening.

The sweet-sour-salty-spicy combination soon had the tastebuds tingling, so here is my take on this popular salad.

Any mince can be used, including seafood, pork or quail.

Thai chicken larb

Serves 4

1 tbsp peanut oil

4 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped coarsely

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