So I am a bit frantic today I have 12 friends coming for dinner tonight (several of them are designers which adds to the pressure) in a house that is way too modest for this sort of event. So it has got me thinking about how I should go about this. I have decided that I am going to do something quite simple, Ceviche, followed by Grilled Lobster with a watermelon and Arugula Salad followed by a fresh Fruit Salad. We will be eating outside in the garden, it will be quite a simple affair with fresh delicious food.
I took my inspiration from some of my favorite cookbooks, by two of my most favorite cooks, Bill Grainger and Donna Hay, both from Sydney, Australia. Between the two of them they have amassed quite a collection of books, but the 5 listed here are among my most popular. It is amazing to me just how simple all these recipes are, often just a few ingredients, but you will be shocked by the depth of flavor.
For instance Bill has a Chicken Soup recipe, that is made from canned chicken stock and a few vegetables, it takes only about 10 minutes to make but tastes like you have slaved all day in the Kitchen, try it, it will rock your world!
Donna Hay on the other hand has made a career by taking classic recipes and reinventing them in a simpler way. One of my favorite books of hers is Flavors, instead of each chapter broken up by course or ingredient, it is broken down by tastes, so there is a chapter on salt, or lime, it's a refreshing way to look at food and makes putting together a meal a real breeze.
Anyway, try some of these books and see what you think, it really is a new way of looking at food.