Australia – Fresh and fast Pete Evans – or what chefs cook at home
My Table by Pete Evans
By Louise Johnson
I’d like to have breakfast every morning at Pete Evans’ house. At his outdoor table his family enjoy the most amazing breakfasts each day. They have bircher muesli with beautiful ripe mixed berries, sticky barbecued French toast for the kids, and smoked salmon and avocado on toast. It sure beats the winter porridge and summer Weetbix and tinned peaches routine at our house.
Pete Evans has built a reputation as a chef, restaurateur, television presenter and fisherman and while I’d love to eat at Pete’s table, but I’m a little pleased it’s not my table. Reading My Table is like looking through images of a palatial home with towering glass windows, winding staircases joining multi-levels and a private sandy beach just a few steps down from a sweeping veranda. I love it all, I want it all, but the niggly Scots wifey in me can’t help but wonder if you’d ever be done vacuuming and cleaning windows.
Similarly, My Table makes me dream of a fridge stocked with smoked salmon, fresh and perfectly ripe mixed berries and a variety of artisan cheeses. Perhaps I could shop every day, plan meals over that leisurely breakfast on my sunny beach front veranda and then wander off to forage. But if I shopped every day when would I find time to clean the windows?
All this said the appeal of My Table is that all the meals are accessible. There are no exotic ingredients that will send you across the country in search of specialty stores, or complicated processes that could lead to heart-breaking disasters. Everything is fast and easy, fresh, colourful and inviting.
“This book came about because I wanted to show people what chefs (well, me anyway) cook and eat at home when they aren’t cooking in their restaurants. This is an honest representation of the meals I love to cook for friends, family and myself,” he says.
The book is split into Outdoors and Indoors, with dishes reflecting the seasons that allow eating in both locations. Outdoor recipes include king prawns with a spicy Thai dressing, a luscious gorgonzola, fig and pancetta pizza or a crisp radicchio salad with croutons, parmesan and balsamic vinegar. There’s a great range of summer drinks, including a raspberry martini that’s perfect for that sweeping veranda.
Indoors decadent chocolate waffles make a great breakfast, and a heart wild mushroom risotto has a scratch-and-sniff quality it is so beautifully photographed. Pete also shares his mums ‘best in the world’ spaghetti Bolognese.
Warm and approachable, Pete Evans may just inspire a restocking of the fridge and a professional cleaner.
My Table by Pete Evans is published by Murdoch Books (2009, hb), RRP $45.
VisitVineyards.com Members and subscribers can purchase My Table here at a 12.5% discount from our online book partner Seekbooks (postage extra).
- Sydney (NSW)
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