Why the hungry chook (& WHAT IS A CHOOK ANYWAY)?...


Chook noun (plural chooks)

  1. (Australia, New Zealand, slang) A hen; a cooked chicken; a chicken dressed for cooking


People often ask me "why the hungry chook?", and to be honest, I am not really sure! Other than to say that hubby calls me his chook; I am hungry; but mostly, because I never thought that someday others would know me as the hungry chook. But by now I'm stuck.

So, yes, I am a chook and I am hungry - I am not quite cooked, but I am usually dressed for cooking. What else? I live in Sydney, Australia with hubby and four more chooks. The type that sleep in a coop and lay eggs. Actual chooks. We have managed to squeeze a house; a three-storey chicken coop; and two vegetable gardens onto a fairly average inner-city block (about 150m2). Growing what we can and keeping chickens is a privilege that reminds us to eat seasonally, reduce waste as much as possible, and to eat less meat (and meat that is ethically sourced). We try to eat fruit and vegetables that are mostly organic, shopping regularly at our local farmers' market for what we can't grow at home. I wouldn't dream of buying perishables at the supermarket - this includes dairy, bread, fruit, vegetables, fish and meat. I say "no, thanks" to plastic, and I actually shed a tear recently when my butcher (Bruce) retired.

I am lucky enough to be able to travel around Australia and to Rome once a year to share what I have learned in the kitchen. Always with an emphasis on the food we eat at home; that is seasonal and prepared from scratch with love.

My desk is piled high with cookbooks which to be honest could topple on me at any moment: if I'm not in the kitchen, you might find me poring over one of these, or in the garden - but always thinking about what's for dinner. Cooking for others is about nurturing and nourishing the people I care for - it's something I do to relax, and I'm really passionate about it.

Speaking of dinner, I must get back to the kitchen,
Buon appetito!


Image by Flore Vallery-Radot

Image by Flore Vallery-Radot