Friday, February 28, 2014

"The Dirty Chef" by Matthew Evans

This book "The Dirty Chef" is an autobiographical account by Matthew Evans (From the "Gourmet Farmer" TV series on SBS) of his journey from being a food and restaurant critic in Sydney to setting up a small farm in Tasmania. He is really into eating locally produced, seasonal, organic, free-range, sustainable food, and also loves preparing, cooking and eating good quality and delicious food. His book is full of anecdotes of lovely, interesting and quirky characters, adventures and misadventures of essentially setting up a hobby farm from scratch with no real prior knowledge of what that might involve, and interspersed with delicious-sounding recipes. I read this book in kindle format, but I really wish I had bought it as a hard copy, as I'm sure I would keep referring back to it and looking up recipes etc which is a lot harder to do with an e-book I find. I found this book to be entertaining (humourous in parts), interesting and inspiring...over the last year I have personally been attempting to eat more local and seasonal food, shop at places like the Adelaide Central Markets for organic local delicious food, grow my own herbs in pots in the garden, and just enjoy cooking and eating clean healthy gluten-free food that tastes good and isn't pumped full of chemicals or shipped halfway around the globe and sold by big companies. It's not always possible on a tight budget, but I am enjoying trying to follow these ideas as much as I can. Additionally, I have been dreaming of a gourmet food holiday in Tasmania, taking a road trip down the east coast eating lots of local cheeses, berries, seafood and drinking wine... Given that I am already starting to get interested in this sort of lifestyle, I really loved this book and the insight it gave me into various aspects of organic, free range and local farming compared to what we are offered through big chain supermarkets. However if your a vegetarian you might not be as enthusiastic about many of the themes in the book.

I have only seen a handful of episodes of "The Gourmet Farmer" on SBS over the years, but now I have read this book I am quite keen to try to get a hold of the shows on DVD, and to look out for a copy of the author's other book "The Real Food Companion". 

Started reading on my kindle: 28th February 2014
Finished: 8th March 2014
My score: 9/10

Aussie Author Challenge criteria: Male author, New to me, Non-Fiction, Autobiography genre, foodie, first published in 2013.

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