By Sean Melrose.
Notes from a Food Revolution. AGFG’s Sean Melrose speaks with Quicksand Food Director, Stefan Posthuma-Grbic in a podcast about local food, paddock to plate, the place of farmers’ markets and Canberra’s food revolution, listen now, while you read his interview.
Picture it, the mood is set, the candles are burning low and the Clement’s Veal Wellington, in the oven is just starting to take on a golden brown on the outside. The wine is open and a glass rests on the kitchen bench. The only thing missing? A good podcast.
That’s where Quicksand Food Connection comes in, adding the story of Les Bistronomes to the mix; they’re the crew responsible for the recipe behind the alluring Wellington now in the oven. The Quicksand Food Connection podcast for those uninitiated, is Stefan Posthuma-Grbic’s accompaniment to Quicksand’s latest cookbook The Capital Cookbook 3, among others.
The podcast, which looks in depth at the stories behind standout producers and restaurants associated with each cookbook’s region, started up in conjunction with the second book in the series, The Southern Highlands Cookbook.
"I found myself in a lot of positions where I’d be speaking one-on-one to a Chef about their food and the dishes, and how they created their menu and the producers that they used and I found those conversations just fascinating,” says Stefan.
Tuning in to the podcast can be done by scanning a QR code on the book, or by visiting the Quicksand Food website. It’s a novel approach that has a lot going for it, most cookbooks generally don’t have too much text outside recipes, so the podcast allows Stefan to get across more intricate information and subtle nuances that are harder to put into book form.
"Rather than, you know, reading a page with words, they can listen to a half an hour conversation with that person that really drives home their story, you can hear the emotion in that person’s voice, you can hear their passion,” says Stefan.
Some of the episodes, looking back to its infancy discuss some captivating topics that go in all sorts of directions, reaching to areas perhaps not expected for a foodie podcast. For instance, the story of Jayson Mesman, founder and director of The Truffle Farm in Mt Majura, who started out in the Australian Customs Service training dogs, before his affinity with canines led him to the Wine and Truffle Company. Then there’s Dr Noel Arrold from Li-Sun Exotic Mushrooms in The Southern Highlands Cookbook, the founder of a mushroom farm that sits fifty metres beneath the ground in an abandoned train tunnel.
Listeners hooked on the stories begin to realise they are about people just as much as food, two topics that can be from time to time, interchangeable. It’s no surprise that Stefan is looking at continuing the podcast as its own entity, which removes the need to wait for a book launch to share his stories.
"I don’t think that I necessarily have to be making a cookbook to be able to talk to people and release episodes of the podcast, so that’s something that’s going to continue,” says Stefan.
The audio of this interview with Stefan can be found in podcast form at the Quicksand website. If you’re interested in Sean’s book review of The Capital Cookbook 3, simply head here, and for more information about The Southern Highlands Cookbook, AGFG’s Julie Johnson and Annabel Rainsford did a series of articles, the book review is here, an interview with Stefan is here and Stefan shares his must-have tips for travelling to the Southern Highlands with AGFG here.
Recipes and images from The Capital Cookbook 3, published by Quicksand Food, RRP $39.95.