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Maggie Beer

Tasting Australia at Coffin Bay

April 18 2019

I am so proud of my friend Simon Bryant and what he has achieved with Tasting Australia. Not only does the city come alive but there are so many regions of South Australia having wonderful events. Mine was to be part of Peter Clark of Vintner's lunch at Coffin Bay; a request I jumped at truly loving the area with the richness of its seafood and its fishermen.    What I didn't allow for though was the weather the night before the lunch.  The wind was so strong there was no visibility from dust storms all the way to the airport; checking 'willyweather' there were gale force winds expected at Port Lincoln and the flight is serviced by what I consider a small plane. For the first time in my life I was too scared to fly and instead leaned on my friend Peter Clark telling him that I was turning around and would fly in the morning and to the big question to him 'could he manage' he calmly said - not to worry Maggie we will make it work...and he and his team did exactly that;  as Simon said 'Peter would always have your back'....Luckily I had already poached the baby octopus I was going to serve as the precursor to finishing on charcoal on the day (as you see from the photo - the leftovers after service...)  I had the octopus and verjuice and vino cotto packed with me but as I had Brendon from Prestige Oysters there opening 25 dozen oysters between just 50 people; I had sashimi of ocean jacket and Hiramasa kingfish organised to be cut a la minute to be served with umeboshi (Japanese salty sour plum) evoo, vino cotto and spring onion. So it was a pretty easy thing for me really but Peter made it even easier by carving my sashimi so that when I arrived on the coach as it happened with the 50 guests I sprang into action whilst they sipped on some very special Bollinger as Guy de Rivoire of Bollinger was hosting with us. I pulled a few things together and tossed the baby octopus from Port Lincoln onto the charcoal and savoured this beautiful spot with not a whisper of the terrible weather the day before. I should say that the ocean jacket caught at Port Lincoln by the Braby family was my first ever taste of this and every morsel was fantastic from the sashimi to the fish on the barbecue to the amazing flavour of the liver Peter put into his sauce.... Read the rest...

Maggie's Festive Menu

December 04 2018

Whilst I approach the Christmas season with much excitement, there is still a tinge of panic about how much needs to be done. Despite the huge amount of organisation involved, the one aspect of the season that is never anything other than a true joy for me, is thinking about the food for Christmas and the holidays that follow. I have the advantage of tradition behind me, so some things just fall into place, yet there is always leeway to try something new, as there are many more events to think of than just Christmas Day. Read the rest...

Foodbank - Hunger in the Country is a big problem

November 05 2018

Foodbank is Australia’s largest food relief organisation and every month they provide food and grocery relief to over 710,000 Aussies. Read the rest...

Maggie's food reflections from Europe Part 1

October 31 2018

The last two months have been a whirlwind; I know you will have seen on Instagram a few photos I sent from Vienna; Isle of Skye and London. What I hadn’t mentioned up till now is how our time in London was upended only days before we arrived there by having our Air BnB booking cancelled without anything other than a memo to say they would return our money. It made London where I had so much to cover from a business sense in workshops; a trade show and investigating trends with the difficulty of finding a hotel at the last moment for 5 nights to fit in with all our plans certainly has made us want to know we would have security in the future should we rebook anything with Air BnB. Read the rest...

Maggie's food reflections from Europe Part 2

October 31 2018

So many food experiences from our first day in Porto waiting for the rest of the group with a dish of clams simply served with the cooking juices, garlic and parsley; or sea bass in a salt casing cooked in a hot pan and flamed with great theatre. A seafood porridge; full of mussels, scamp and razor clams in a tomato broth with the juices again from cooking with fresh coriander, EVOO and stale bread and ‘making’ the porridge by the waiter stirring at the table. The first night of the trip we were bussed to Matosinhos, a town by the sea, and ate at Casa Serrao where the grilling of the fish was done on an outside charcoal barbecue; lines of these outside kitchens taking over the street; the smoke bellowing over the street long which was where the most perfect sardines caught that morning as whole fish with just EVOO were cooked; then the largest sea bream I had encountered; gutted and opened up to cook on the grill; the amazing caramelisation of the skin and the sides and cooked again to perfection. Such plenty on the table as we dissected the fish off the bone to begin with but then a few of us attacked the bones and the cheek and every bit of it so succulent I definitely ate more than I needed and the meal was nothing short of unbelievable yet so incredibly simple. Read the rest...

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