About Me
I'm a Melbourne boy, hailing from St Kilda with one ex, one current wife and four kids. Love the outdoors and making new discoveries. I cook a lot at home (cheers from wife) and do some preserving, mostly jams, pickles and fruit liqueurs. This is the diary of a cooking journey.

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Tuesday, November 21, 2006
I'm One!!!
Well, here is my little blog, one year to the day later. It has gone by so fast. I can still remember deciding to give it a go and after that it was just get the whole thing going as soon as possible, despite the name food for thought, I didn't think all that much about it.

I've managed to write about the big three no no's, sex, politics and religion and agonized over whether or not to tell you about my daughter's autism. I've made lots and lots of new friends - yes, you - and had tons of fun along the way. There is even this whole new look which I'm loving to bits, though strangely my writing which seemed to suit my old blog, doesn't feel quite right for this look....yet.

Since it's my blog's birthday, I've decided to put up my very first post. We recently holidayed in Avoca, a country town in Central Victoria, with some friends. We had cooked the prawn recipe for them sometime prior and they had asked for the recipe. At Avoca they cooked their version of it for us, which had a dollop of honey added. It's a great recipe and I know if you try it, you will love it too.

My First Ever Post

No, this is not about football, this is about a recipe that came into being because of football also about traditions and the importance of being flexible with them.

I've got a mate that follows the same football team as me (go bombers!). We get along to a couple of games every year but the real highlight is our grand final barbecue. Both of us are into wine and food, so about a month out we start our planning. Food is my go and L. organises the wines. Every year, just because I can, I change the menu. Its only fair because we never drink the same wines every year. But there are two items we have to do every year because everyone demands them.

My wife's lamb shashlicks and my spicy barbecue prawns.

I know what your thinking, wine at a barbecue..... at a grand final barbecue, where's the beer? Okay, okay its just what we do. And sure beer would go better with spicy prawns, but this is our tradition.

Anyway, the other day we planned a barbecue for our friends in the run up to xmas. We live in an apartment so we have our barbecues somewhere else, in this case it was the Maroondah Dam park. This place must be Melbourne's best kept secret. They have real wood fired barbecues not those sad electric ones and they supply the wood! And the best walk after having eaten too much. I asked my wife what she would like to have; she smiled sweetly at me, the smile every man knows not to ignore at his peril, and asked for spicy prawns.

Tradition- I have never cooked this dish outside of the grand final- but there was that damn sweet smile.


1 kg shelled and deveined raw (green) prawn tails
4 spring onions finely chopped
4 cloves garlic crushed
2.5 cm piece ginger grated
2-3 small hot chillies finely chopped
Half bunch coriander washed and chopped
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 tablespoon soy sauce
100 mls olive oil
Juice of 2 limes or 1 lemon
Salt and pepper

Mix all the ingredients in a bowl, cover and refrigerate for two hours, no longer or lime/ lemon juice will cook prawns. Heat barbecue plate until smoking hot, oil plate and tip entire contents of bowl onto the plate. Working quickly spread prawns apart and cook for two minutes. Turn prawns over and cook for another two minutes. Remove to a plate and garnish with fresh coriander leaves and quarters of lime or lemon.

  posted at 9:03 am

At 10:30 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, yes I think I'd request those spicy bbq prawns too!!! But I probably couldn't match L's sweet smile.
Recipe certainly has all the right stuff: limes, chilies, garlic, ginger - how could it not be great!!

Why is it I don't understand how this is your first post?

And a very Happy Birthday!!

At 11:23 am, Blogger Kalyn Denny said...

A very happy blog birthday to you. I do think this recipe looks great, even if I had to make it with the frozen shrimp from Costco (not quite what you're using I'm sure.) And of course it has cilantro, so it's a winner for me.

At 12:01 pm, Blogger Haalo said...

Congratulations on the First Blog Birthday and here's to many more!

At 12:11 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Congratulations on your first birthday Neil - and also on the new blog look, etc. I just wrote my 100th post and was excited enough about that, let alone an actual birthday. Here's to another year of blogging.

At 12:54 pm, Blogger Ed said...

Cheers Neil. More prawns on the barbie!

At 1:32 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy blog birthday!

At 4:11 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hip, hip, hooray!

From another 49YO with one ex, one current and four children. (I hope you don't drive Volvos because that would be too scary!)

(Neil, incidentally I have been reading your comments about autism with interest as Tracy has an autistic nephew.)

At 5:08 pm, Blogger neil said...

Hi tanna, thank-you and I can't understand how it was my first post either, I had no idea when I started.

Hi kalyn, no, we use as cheap as we can get, my mate just bought some peeled prawn tails from the market for $16 kg which is about 50 c U.S.!

Hi haalo, I'll drink to that!

Hi kathryn, that 100th post is a real milestone, congratulations. I didn't blink at two hundred which means five hundred must be the next big one. That's a daunting thought.

Hi ed, a Paul Hogan one?

Hi laurie, thank-you!

Hi kitchen hand, we do indeed have a point of difference. I'm glad you have some interest in autistic issues, sometimes I wonder about it.

At 11:06 pm, Blogger Jeanne said...

Happy blogday to you, happy blogday to you! Thanks for a great year of posts and here's wishing you many more! I would say it gets easier after the first year... but then I've never been a good liar :P I find it gets harder to motivate myself to do salary-earning work when all I want to do is blog... :o)

Here's to many more quality posts.

At 9:07 am, Blogger Reb said...

yay to you Neil! I always enjoy reading your posts: you write so evocatively and have a great gift for humour. Happy blog birthday! I read a great quote relating to autism the other day. When he was young, Tom Waits displayed several characteristics that are sometimes linked to autism like heightened sensitivity to auditory and visual stimuli. He said "they thought they were symptoms until I realised they were talents". Just depends how its labelled. Lookign forward to more great reads!

At 10:39 am, Blogger neil said...

Hi jeanne, I know exactly what you mean! Lie to me anyway.

Hi reb, you know, I reckon if we were at the same dinner party we would look just like the couple in the centre of my header, what do you think? I like the Tom Waits story.

At 5:09 pm, Blogger Helen (AugustusGloop) said...

Congratulations Neil! My how far your blog has come. Thanks for all your great posts and being so frank and honest too.

At 9:21 am, Blogger Reb said...

Not possible Neil - I don't have a drink in my hand :) But otherwise indeed we would!

At 10:42 am, Blogger neil said...

Hi helen, it shocks me a bit at all the things I've done!

Hi reb, no problem - there is a bottle or two right under the table.


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