Last year I was approached by Clare Richards of Tropical Cuisine – Cooking in Clare’s Kitchen to do the photography for her cookbook. I was in Cairns after photographing the opening night of Salt House so we met for a coffee to discuss to project.
I loved the idea – then spent hours and hours with Clare in markets, in tropical orchards, halfway up mountains because she knew where something special was growing, in a Vietnamese friend’s backyard because they were growing an amazing herb… But mainly, in Clare’s kitchen.
Tropical Cuisine – Cooking in Clare’s Kitchen is more than just a cookbook. It’s also the first-of-it’s-kind, reference book with a full glossary of all the wonderful produce we have in the tropics – how to use it, how to store it and of course it’s full of over 250 fabulous recipes!
It’s a beautiful hard cover book with lots of photographs of Clare’s great recipes which as well as being delicious are also really easy to follow.
The forward is written by Stephanie Alexander, who says, “This excellent book fills a significant gap in the reference shelves of any cook living in Australia’s tropical or even sub-tropical climes… ..The photographs by Alison George are close-up and bold and wherever possible the ‘hero’ ingredient is easy to see.”
(Papaya soup – this recipe is to die for)
The coffee table book also has images of the local area.
(Rare beef salad w soba noodles)
(Jackfruit seeds & chilli paprika salt, macadamias pan roasted w lime, peanuts & ikan bilis, mango w kecap manis – and an icy beer to go w these delicious snacks)
(Local painted crayfish with coconut & lime sauce)
(Mangosteens @ the market)
(Sweet potato & tropical fruit salad)
(Lychees on the tree)
(Bowl of mangoes)
(Gin gin w/ prawn cocktail)
(Barbecued baharat prawns)
(Honey soy chicken wings)
(Barbecue sauce on pork spare ribs)
(Barbecued squid w sichuan salt)
(Roo burger w homemade hamburger bun)
(Stuffed bitter melon)
(Duck & lychee salad)
(Rare beef salad w raosted garlic paste)
(Tea smoked tuna on wild pepper leaves)
(Mud crab in ginger glaze)
(Prawn & tarragon risotto)
(Aromatic goat stew)
(Mangoes on the tree)
(Mamey sapote cakes)
(Spiced plantain compote w coconut milk & pecans)
(Passion fruit butter on family chocolate cake)
(Family chocolate cake)
(Home-made ice creams; classic vanilla, beetroot, star anise, & black sapote (my fave))
(Black sapote chocolate mousse)
(Davidson’s Plum custard pie)
Of course the fully comprehensive glossary in the back lets you know everything about the produce – why it’s good, how to choose it, how to store it, which flavours to match it with and recipes to use it in.
(Pitaya – aka red dragonfruit)
Buy a book online here, or the Cairns launch is Friday 26th November @ Tanks Art Centre. See you there. Clare will be there signing books as well as at the Tanks market on Sunday 28th Nov and the Port Douglas markets Sunday December 5th.