Thursday, October 20, 2011

My Favourite Soup Kitchen in Town know those days when the only thing that's going to make everything better is a big hearty bowl of chicken soup!!!

This one is my favourite and I would honestly walk 100 miles for it. It's called Pho and it's a bowl of Vietnamese goodness which soothes my soul at least once a week.

I can't tell you the name of the place because we just call it "the chicken soup place" but its on George Street in Chinatown just around the corner from the ginseng and Chinese herb warehouse on Ultimo Road, up the from the pub on the corner.... got it? Good!

It's a very basic little place; you know the type with the laminated tables and no fancy overheads. Run by Vietnamese, the place is a hustle and bustle of Vietnamese students, families and local office workers all there for their daily fix.

The soup is made up of a beautiful clear broth with rice noodles, sweet slices of fresh onion and generous slices of tender chicken beast perched on top. It all comes accompanied by a bowl of bean shoots, Vietnamese mint and a wedge of lemon. The usual squeeze bottles of fish sauce and chilli are there too with a pot of freshly sliced chilli as well. Tea is served before you even put your bum down and your order is taken in a matter of minutes.

The best thing is this bowl of heart warming goodness only costs $9! Although, best to catch a cab from wherever you’re coming from as parking is impossible!

Happy eating!

Simmone x

Monday, October 10, 2011

My Summer Menu Photo Shoot

I've just flopped into a chair with a gin and tonic after a twelve hour day shooting parts of the new Simmone Logue summer brochure.... what a day!!

But you know even though I spend all day every day in a kitchen somewhere cooking up a storm I always feel so inspired when I see my food come together in a photograph. It's really such an expression of who I am culinarily and I get such a buzz out of expressing myself this way!
The props for the photo shoot

I always work with the same brilliant team and we are such a great fit. It feels like we have been working for years together. We are a little creative family that fit together like my trusty kitchen whizz! There's Carlu who styles the shots so beautifully; Camilla who waits for the light to be just right and then takes the photograph; and Mel my clever designer.
The brilliant team!

The best bit is when we take a break and all sit for lunch together. You know you've got it right when a sudden blanket of quiet comes over the house and then the "mmm's!!!" and the "ahhh's!!!" start!
My fresh mint that I used to make gin and tonics for the girls at the end of the day!

Today the shoot happened at my little shack on the beach down south as I really wanted to capture through the food and images a feeling of effortless and spontaneous food - the food we want to prepare when we are in holiday mode with lots of close friends around. I think I got it so I'm really happy.

My favourite shot for the day was my goats cheese on crute with roasted capsicum, red pepper jam and basil. Be sure to keep an eye out for my new Summer brochure which will be available very soon!

A dish that we can't live without during the Summer is my smoked trout salad with green mango, mint and toasted peanut with Simmone Logue Thai vinaigrette.

Smoked Trout, Green Mango, Mint and Toasted Peanut with Simmone Logue Thai Vinaigrette
(serves four)

1 smoked trout, skin and bones removed and separated into chunks
1 green mango or ripe one if you prefer, julienned
1 bunch coriander, leaves picked
1 bunch mint, leaves picked
½ a medium sized Spanish onion, sliced finely
2 cups Chinese cabbage sliced finely
2 small Birds eye chilli, chopped finely
1 red capsicum, finely sliced (optional)
2 tablespoons peanut, roasted and chopped
1 lime, cut into 4
¼ cup Simmone Logue Thai dressing*

1. Combine all the ingredients (except for the toasted peanut, Thai dressing and lime) in a bowl and toss gently.
2. Drizzle with Simmone Logue Thai dressing and sprinkle the crunchy peanuts on top.
3. Garnish with the lime cheeks.

*My Simmone Logue Thai dressing bottles are available for you to purchase from my Double Bay and Cammeray stores!

Happy cooking,

Simmone x