1. What, or who, inspired you to start a blog?
A few things.
- feeling a need to document our Expat adventure while fully aware that I cannot stick with a written diary for more than two weeks
- my friend at PDNFTA who told me it was fun
- smart-arsed vanity and a liking for words
- the "opt-in" social networking option as opposed to the
people-I-knew-at-school-and-didn't-much-care-for-then-and-haven't-seen-for-twenty-years-ramming-it-down-yer-neck"opt-out" variety. If you know what I mean.
Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall wins hands down. Man's a genius.
3. Your greasiest, batter-splattered food/drink book is?
A plastic lever-arch file containing all my clippings and notes that I'm in the (long drawn-out) process of sorting out. I use it as much as all my other cookbooks put together.
4. Tell us about the best thing you have eaten in another country, where was it, what was it?
A bowl of noodles in Kyoto last Christmas (near the corner of the road that leads up to Kiyumizu-dera Temple). The restaurant (whose name I didn't even know at the time, since it wasn't written in English) had one long table, about a dozen seats, and about six items on the menu. I had udon in soup with wild greens and two pieces of inari sushi. It was sublime.
5. Another food blogger's table you'd like to eat at?
Easy one, Dr Leslie Tay of ieatishootipost is a legend in our household. He guides our culinary journey through what must be the most complex and extraordinary foodie country in the world. I'd ask him to give me a roti prata-making lesson, and then I'd ask him approximately three gazillion other questions about Singaporean food.
6. What is the one kitchen gadget you would ask Santa for this year (money no object of course)?
I'd do (almost) anything for a Kitchenaid countertop mixer. But I'd settle for a Dualit hand mixer. I've heard tell of a mysterious and marvellous new invention recently too - an induction hob with a hollowed out area for your wok - GENIUS! I think I would spend a lot of time stroking it.
7. Who taught you how to cook?
The Guardian/Observer newspaper columns circa 2000-2010. Possibly my Mum instilled a few basic skills before that.
8. I'm coming to you for dinner, what is your signature dish?
In Singapore, nothing. We're going out because you'd be crazy to want to eat at home. In Scotland, I'd probably make you green masala chicken and stuffed peppers (recipes from the Guardian columns by Vicky Bhogal who is amazeballs). With a bit of dhal.
9. What is your guilty food pleasure?
I could probably eat my own body weight in marshmallows.
10. Reveal something about yourself that others would be surprised to learn?
I can't poach an egg to save my life. I don't drive on principle... and because I'm really crap at it. I've done many things to earn an honest wage, from busking to root canal therapy. One of the most painful things I've ever done was, many years ago, to spend a day dressed as a maiko (apprentice geisha). Those girls are hard as nails.
And now, to tag 5 others!
Okay, apologies to these here listed if they've already taken part in this event (or decided to pass on it - that's okay too). Here are some food bloggers I really like:
- Please Do Not Feed The Animals cos she's the loveliest gourmet I know
- Sharkey Oven Gloves who writes a lovely, thoughtful blog
- Me, My Food and I , what this boy doesn't know about chocolate cakes isn't worth knowing, and he knows about lots of other tasty stuff too
- Joyful Baker whose recipes WORK, I've tried 'em
- The Little Teochew whose blog I can't get enough of because it's about Singapore's wonderful food (and I love the story behind the blog's name)