18 Feb 2017
in Book Review
Tags: accessible food, anecdotes, book, books, changing your way of thinking, cheap food, client narratives, common sense, dense, development, diet, dr helena popovic, easy prose, exercise, fast living, fibre, food consumption, food for thought, food freedom, foods, guide, healthy body, helena popovic, holistic view to weight management, hunger, information, it's how and why you eat, it's not what you eat, lbour-saving devices, leisure activities, less stress, let your brain change your body, lifestyle health, mindful eating, misinformation, missions, natural hunger, neuroslimming, non-fiction, obesity, obesogenic environment, oversaturation, overweight, parables, physical exercise, pleasure, poor eating choices, poor food habits, positive change, practical, regaining weight, review, reviews, satiety, scientific evidence, sedentary jobs, self-help, sleep, specialist, stories, weight gain, weight loss, weight management, whole foods
We live in an obesogenic environment. It’s a world of fast living, sedentary jobs and leisure activities, labour-saving devices, and an overabundance of cheap, accessible, energy-dense, nutrient poor, highly-processed foods. It’s also an environment where a growing majority of people are overweight or obese and those who succeed in shedding weight will often find themselves regaining it (and possibly more) in the 12 months after the fact.
NeuroSlimming looks to address some of these problems and get people to really stop and think about how and why they eat, rather than getting too hung up on what they consume.
To read the rest of this review please visit the following website: http://magazine.100percentrock.com/reviews/book-reviews/201702/223334
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07 Mar 2016
in DVD Review
Tags: 7th, american bbq, asian bbq, barbecue, barbeque, barbequing, braising, breads, caja china, charcoals, Cheong Liew, cooking, diverse, engaging, enthusiastic, fire, fish, flatbreads, food, food safari, food safari fire, Frank Camorra, grilled fish in banana leaf, grilling, Guy Grossi, informative, Jerry Uesele, Lennox Hastie, maeve o'meara, margherita pizza, meats, ovens, pleasure, review, reviews, roasting, samoan umu oven, season, sensual, series, seventh, simple pleasure, smoking, Somer Sivrioglu, steaming, subtle, suckling pig, tamarind salsa, tandoor oven, Tetsuya Wakuda, top-class chefs, understated, vibrant, wood, wood fire oven
Maeve O’Meara is playing with fire in her latest series of Food Safari. The show is now in its seventh season and this time around its dedicated to “fire”, that is braising, steaming, smoking, grilling, roasting and barbequing using fire, wood, charcoals and different ovens. The show is ultimately a visceral one that is brimming with recipes from all around the world and includes lots of different techniques and tools, some of which have been passed down for generations.
O’Meara is a vibrant and enthusiastic host who has honed her experience over two decades of presenting food shows. She also picks a number of interesting guests including top-class chefs like Tetsuya Wakuda, Guy Grossi, Cheong Liew, Somer Sivrioglu and Frank Camorra. It’s funny that in a number of cases the chefs take a back seat and almost have to be apprentices when their parents are the ones cooking. It proves that the techniques are old and practiced ones that are well-revered. It also means that age definitely comes before beauty in this instance.
Two episodes of this series are dedicated to the wood fire oven and the tandoor oven, respectively. In the former we see award-winning margherita pizza being made as well as whole baked fish and Greek filo pie. In the latter it’s all about aromatic prawns, spicy kebabs, tandoori chicken and different sorts of flatbreads including naans and Afghan or Persian bread.
The other instalments include ones dedicated to Asian and American barbeques (where the technique “low and slow” is preached) as well as street foods and different smoking and grilling techniques. In episode one we learn from Firedoor Chef, Lennox Hastie about how different kinds of woods used in the cooking process can help perfume the food and create subtle differences in the flavour. But perhaps the most fun and interesting segment is watching Jerry Uesele and his extended family cooking in a traditional Samoan Umu oven. The way they make caramel using volcanic rock is ingenious.
The special features on the DVD are very disappointing and are just two segments/recipes that failed to make the final cut. While these look tasty (a grilled fish in banana leaf with a tamarind salsa and a suckling pig cooked in a caja china) it would have been better to see more behind-the-scenes stuff. The program is an engaging one and these finishing touches would have helped with the overall presentation to ultimately make a better collection.
Food Safari Fire is a warm and informative program that features some passionate home cooks and chefs in a series that is perhaps their most sensual, raw and mouth-watering one to date. The recipes cover a lot of different cultures and techniques but predominately include preparing meats, breads and fish. In all this is an understated food/cooking program that celebrates the simple pleasure of cooking with the powerful medium known as fire. It’s a good throwback to ancient times and it’s a fun way to reconnect with your food.
Originally published on 5 March 2016 at the following website: http://www.impulsegamer.com/food-safari-fire-dvd-review/
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10 Nov 2015
in Film Review
Tags: Aiste Miseviciute, Andy Hayler, boring, degustation, dining, doco, documentary, eating, elaborate, elitist, establishments, extreme, film, films, fine, fine-dining, food, food bloggers, food experiences, food porn, food shots, food writers, food writing, foodies, foodies: the culinary jet set, Katie Keiko, Katie Keiko Tam, michelin star, michelin stars, obnoxious, out of this world food experiences, Perm Paitayawat, pleasure, repetitive, review, reviews, self-important, Steve Plotnicki, tedious, the culinary jet set, wd-50, wd~50, Wylie Dufresne
Foodies: The Culinary Jet Set is a documentary that is supposed to celebrate five influential food bloggers and show their enviable jobs as they attend fine-dining establishments. The result is a movie that looks fabulous but it is rather slow and tedious to watch. The documentary’s elitist nature also makes it hard for the viewer to relate to the proceedings, because this is a group of predominantly self-important and obnoxious writers.
The film begins with British blogger, Andy Hayler complaining about receiving Moët & Chandon rather than Bollinger. It’s hard not to dismiss this guy straight away as a smug and privileged white man. The former software developer does at least have credibility because he has visited every Michelin-starred restaurant over the past five years and he has developed an elaborate rating system for scoring his meals, so he does at least know what he’s talking about.
The other veteran blogger is Steve Plotnicki, the former head of a hip-hop record label. He is perhaps the most outspoken and opinionated of the lot. He is shown in this film arguing with the acclaimed chef, Wylie Dufresne at the latter’s WD~50 restaurant. The writer had called one of Dufresne’s creations the worst dish he had ever eaten, which seems a bit over-the-top. It’s hard to relate to these bloggers because a lot of them are rich people who are in powerful positions that others could only dream of. This often means that the best moments are the rare ones where the chefs are interviewed as it’s interesting to learn about their take on their own industry and craft.
Katie Keiko Tam is the newest blogger and she spends a lot of the film looking a tad green and out of her depth. But you do have to admire her for her hard work (she at least toils away at a day job in order to fund her expensive hobby). The same cannot be said about Perm Paitayawat whose food adventures are funded by his family’s wealth. The final blogger is a former model named Aiste Miseviciute who seems more mysterious than enlightening.
Foodies shows some great shots of food and like Julie & Julia this film will make you hungry as you sit and watch it. This documentary does have some moments where it’s interesting to witness eating with a focus on pleasure rather than sustenance and to see the cameras turned away from those usually taking the food pictures, to make them stars in their own right. The only problem is that some of these bloggers are not great “talents” in terms of interviewees, with some not being particularly colourful or insightful while others spend too much time over-intellectualising things. It can be quite trying to watch at times.
This documentary was never going to change the world but it did at least achieve what it had set out to do: to show the more extreme examples of foodies and some exclusive, out-of-this-world food experiences. It’s just a shame that things become too repetitive and you get the sense that there was never enough original material for a full-length feature. To use an analogy that the stars would understand, perhaps this film should have been just a main meal rather than a 10-course degustation. In all, this does have some good moments but you do have to get past the obnoxious and self-indulgent stars and that could just leave you with a bad taste in your mouth.
Originally published on 4 November 2015 at the following website: http://www.impulsegamer.com/foodies-itunes-review/
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