Greetings food and booklovers, and welcome to another exciting edition of Friday Feast. We have a cracking line-up today, including one of Australia’s leading popular women’s fiction authors, a beautiful pasta dish and a book giveaway!
But first, the self-flagellation that is Us Heins Weren’t Meant To Play Golf. In good news, my putting demon partner and I won (by a whisker) the ladies ambrose competition last week, while I also somehow managed to win longest drive. Rah! In bad or, rather, typical news, it was all downhill from there with me failing to play to my new handicap in the mixed comp. Again. Mind you, that didn’t stop the computer stealing another 0.2 of a stroke off me. No compassion those computers. None. Phht.
But on we go to much more uplifting news!
Lisa Heidke has been at the forefront of Australian popular women’s fiction for a number of years now, catapulting onto the scene with Lucy Springer Gets Even and continuing that success up with What Kate Did Next. Claudia’s Big Break and Stella Makes Good followed to great reviews as well, which should come as no surprise. Lisa studied journalism, has worked in the book and magazine publishing industries, and teaches popular women’s fiction workshops at the Australian Writer’s Centre. In other words, she knows how to tell a good yarn and her stories sparkle with good humour, warm characters and clever observation.
Lisa’s new book is It Started With A Kiss and it looks GORGEOUS. Check it out.
Naturopath, Friday Jones, feels betrayed when Liam, her husband of almost twenty years, announces that their marriage is over. On the brink of a mid-life crisis and crippled with a fear of missing out, Liam moves in with his bachelor brother, Brad, and pursues his secret ambition of becoming a stand-up comic.
Months later, Friday, still heartbroken, meets an unavailable man, but unable to control her desire, embarks on an intense secret affair.
When her best friend, Rosie, discovers that Friday is flirting with a danger that can only lead to further heartbreak, she signs Friday up with KissMeCupid.com and Friday dives into the murky, unknown, online dating world.
Friday soon starts receiving anonymous letters and gifts and quickly realises that one of her flings has taken obsession to the next level…
Doesn’t that sound like fun? And being a Lisa Heidke book you can be sure there’ll be plenty of twists, drama and laughs as the story unfolds. It Started With A Kiss is available right now from Booktopia, Bookworld, Angus & Robertson, QBD The Bookshop, Boomerang Books, Amazon.au, Kobo, Google Play, iBooks, JB Hi-Fi, chain stores or your favourite book retailer.
Now please give a very hearty welcome too Lisa, and prepare to drool!
Memories Of Santorini …And My Spaghetti Vongole
Thanks for having me over! I must say, when you invited me the Friday Feast I was a tad daunted. You see, rather like Nicki Edwards, one of your previous Friday Feast guests, I’m not much of a cook. Like Nicki, I dislike cooking, mainly because I’d rather be writing or reading – and also because my kids are fussy. Give them a roast chook and salad or sushi every night and they’d be happy!
Unlike Nicki, I do have recipe books. Hundreds of them. People give them to me for Christmas, birthdays, Mother’s Day…and largely, they remain unopened. I was once given a subscription to Gourmet Traveller. Pretty pictures!
However, one of those Gourmet Travellers (I think it was a February edition) inspired me to travel to Santorini. Three whole weeks of bliss! Whilst I was there, I had one of the most amazing dishes ever – Spaghetti Vongole.
Simple but so delicious and tasty.
The kids begrudgingly eat it though it can get messy, but I don’t care. Every time I smell it cooking, the flavours remind me of Greece and I am transported back to that cute little restaurant in Santorini, on the waters’ edge with the red and white checked tablecloths and the pretty white geraniums haphazardly arranged in pottery vases…heaven. The restaurant’s signature Spaghetti Vongole was to die for!
Santorini was also the inspiration for my second novel, Claudia’s Big Break but that’s another story.
In my latest book, It Started with a Kiss, the protagonist, Friday Jones isn’t a great cook. I’d say she’s poor to middling. In fact, all my characters seem to be very average in the kitchen. Funny that!
Still, I’d have to say when it comes to the Vongole, it’s hard to go wrong. Even Friday could do it. So here’s the recipe!
1 kilo Vongole (pipis)
4 whole red chillie4 garlic cloves
1 cup parsley
500 gm spaghetti
Wine or water…depending on your preference
- Boil enough water for the spaghetti
- Finely chop garlic and thinly chop chillies
- Roughly chop parsley
- Cook pasta according to instructions
- While pasta is cooking, sauté garlic, chilli, parsley and pipis in deep frypan for two minutes
- Add a couple of tablespoons of water (or white wine) to the frypan and cover.
- Steam pipis for approximately five minutes until all have opened.
- Drain pasta and add to frypan…toss through…
- Sprinkle parsley on top
- Enjoy with a glass or two of chilled white wine.
Wow! You sure know the way to a girl’s heart, Lisa. Spaghetti vongole is one of my favourite dishes. The shellfish is so sweet and sea-tasting, with the other flavours enhancing the vongole rather than taking over. And it’s so much fun to slurp up the pasta and suck on the shells. Beautiful. I bet your Santorini one tasted even better. Oh, to be there. Sigh.
Enough wistfulness. Let’s make this even more delicious by having a…
Yes, my Feasty darlings, Lisa has very generously offered the chance for one lucky commenter to win a copy of It Started With A Kiss. Naturally you’ll have to work for it. So, to be in the draw, answer this:
Which dishes remind you of a favourite holiday or time in your life?
Me? I have a thousand! Eating sea bass on the Cinque Terra. The jungle curry I helped make at a cooking school in Thailand. Endlessly scoffing crayfish legs and tails at our beach shack during childhood summer holidays. Visiting Rick Stein’s seafood restaurant in Cornwall. Urk. I must stop. All this reminiscing is making me want to go on holiday.
What about you? What dishes remind you of holidays or special times? Reveal all and we’ll pop you into the draw to win It Started With A Kiss.
Giveaway closes midnight Tuesday AEST, 24th February 2015. Australian postal addresses only.
This giveaway has now closed. Congratulations to Meredith who has won a copy of Lisa’s gorgeous new release, It Started With A Kiss.
Thanks so much to everyone for visiting and sharing your lovely holiday food memories.