A break in transmission from the ‘Dispatches from Sydney’…..
In September 2011, my brother Edward was diagnosed with Leukaemia. As I write this, he has been in hospital for over 6 months. He is awaiting a bone marrow transplant at the end of this March that is likely to occur on his 23rd birthday. Meanwhile, this week was my 45th birthday so to celebrate, raise some money for the Leukaemia Foundation and to show support for Edward, I participated in the ‘World’s Greatest Shave’ (there’s a picture at the bottom). It was a great evening with lots of laughs and money raised for the important work of the Foundation.
But why am I writing about this on my food blog? A few months ago, I discovered the website Melting Pot Gems, which sells the book ‘The Melting Pot – Malaysian Gems’. I have talked about my love of Malaysian food previously so I was already interested in filling a gap in my collection. Exploring the website a little further, I learned that author Dr Vasanthi Duraiappah is donating proceeds of this book to the Leukaemia Foundation. I met Vasanthi at a stall at the International Women’ Day Breakfast in Brisbane on March 8 2012 where I bought one of her books. I told her I was raising funds too and she wished me luck. On reading through The Melting Pot, I learned that like myself, Vasanthi’s family had been profoundly affected by cancer and this led her to the Leukaemia Foundation.
But what’s the book like? The tag line on the book says ‘Recipes handed down from my Grandmother’ and indeed, it is like any collection of family recipes with a bit of this and a bit of that. The ‘melting pot’ theme comes from the rich cultural mix of family and place with Ceylonese Tamil, Malaysian and Nonya. Faves such as ‘Chicken Biryani’, ‘Kway Teow’ and ‘Rogan Josh’ are included and vegetarians are catered for too with ‘Thev’s Paneer & Mix Vege Kofta Curry’ amongst others. There’s also a few ‘international’ recipes that have been adapted for family tastes – try ‘Spaghetti w Prawns & Coriander Pesto’, ‘Mum’s Indian Scotch Eggs’ or ‘Lindt Cake’.
I haven’t made any of the dishes yet as I’ve just been so busy, leading up to ‘Shave Day’. I know however that they will taste great as these recipes have been tried and tested by Vasanthi’s grandmother, mother and wider family. When I start cooking from it, I’ll make sure I write a post about my adventures.
In the mean time, it’s not too late to support the important work the Leukaemia Foundation is doing by contributing to: http://my.leukaemiafoundation.org.au
by buying the cookbook ‘The Melting Pot’ at http://meltingpotgems.com/buy-online/