Chinese New Year 2016

Chinese New Year of the Monkey starts on Monday, February 8, this year.

Traditionally, Chinese New Year is celebrated for 15 days, but since most of us have to go back to work, New Year's Eve is considered most important for families, who make an effort to turn up for the reunion dinner and herald in a year of health, good luck and prosperity.

Try these pork money bags, as a symbol of the money you hope will come rolling in this year and every year.

Recipe from Australian Pork.

Chinese pork money bags

Summer Daze

Summer Daze

Summer time and the living is easy .........

Well, I hope it is for you and if you want some ideas on how to spend the beautiful days of summer in Melbourne, here are some suggestions.

Read these

Six Square Metres – reflections from a small garden

By Margaret Simons

Published by Scribe Publications. RRP$24.99

I have fond memories of being tutored by acclaimed journalist and author Margaret Simons when I was working at News.

Foodie fun

Foodie fun

As the saying goes: laughter is the best medicine, so here's some foodie fun.

I was at a supermarket recently and came across this sign which proclaimed that the manager's special that week was "insane washed potatoes at $3.49 a kg."

Did they mean insanely cheap or that the potatoes were crazy?

We all know how peeling and slicing onions can sometimes make you cry.

Christmas 2015

This Christmas, 2015, A Wok on the Wild Side is pleased to present a message from

Reverend Jacqui Smith of St George's Anglican Church, Malvern:

When I see newborn babies, I am always struck by how vulnerable they are.

Which, inevitably at Christmas, makes me think of baby Jesus, the King of

kings and Son of God, according to many.

And I ask God, “Why take such risks in sending one so special to poor

people of little consequence and resources?

"Why not to rich parents in a palace to assure the security of one so precious?”

Spice up your life with Cholula Hot Sauce

Cholula Hot Sauce

I love hot and spicy flavours and my recent discovery of Cholula Hot Sauce does appeal to my heat-seeking palate.

It is one of the fastest growing hot sauces on the market and is gluten-free, which is a bonus.

This spicy sauce is made from a tantalising blend of Mexican Arbol chillies, Piquin peppers and spices, delicately ground into a pepper paste and combined with seasonings and natural ingredients.

Restaurant review: Dandelion


I love the clean, fresh flavours of Vietnamese cuisine, with its liberal use of fresh herbs and spices.

What could be more enjoyable than plucking fresh mint leaves and dunking them into your steaming bowl of pho?

Owners of Dandelion in Elwood, Geoff and Jane Lindsay, chose the rich and diverse cuisine of Vietnam for their stylish restaurant.

Tiffin time at Nazaaray Estate

Fancy tiffin at a picturesque winery?
Go to Nazaaray Estate and enjoy a leisurely lunch in beautiful surroundings.

266 Meakins Road
Flinders 3929

Sunday lunch on 4th October 2015, from 11.45am to 2pm.

Enjoy taste sensations from Pankaj, the Tandoor Man.

$40 per person for food buffet (all you can eat, excludes dessert)

(Children under 12yrs $ 20; 12-18yrs $25).

Seating is limited, so book now.

Royal Melbourne Show 2015

Royal Melbourne Show 2015

The Royal Melbourne Show 2015 will be from September 19 to 29 this year at the Melbourne Showgrounds.

A school holiday favourite with families and friends, there's always plenty to see and do at the show, no matter what your interests are.

City children can pet baby animals and get an experience of rural life while culinary artists can exhibit their creativity at the cake pavillion.

There is always gourmet food and wine for the tasting and who can forget showbags?

Happy Father's Day 2015

Father's Day 2015

Sunday, September 6, is Father's Day in Australia, when all dads should be pampered, taken out to lunch or dinner and be the recipients of new socks, ties, golf clubs and perhaps a new lawnmower.

The funniest gift suggestion I had, when I was writing on Father's Day gift ideas for the local newspaper, came from a popular garden centre.

"If Dad is a keen gardener, why not give him a bag of fertiliser for Father's Day?"
I could just imagine his reaction: "Oh, shit!"

Favourite recipes

Nothing beats a home-cooked meal and my niece Jong-Ee Kao from Singapore is a wonderfully creative home cook.

I'm sharing one of her favourite recipes here.

Why not share your favourite recipe with us at

Grilled Seafood with Cranberry Couscous and Cucumber Salad
150g baby squid, left whole
350g or 12 fresh prawns, shells on


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