I have been really truly busy this summer. One minute I’m covered, splashed in the face, white, painting the ceiling of my new kitchen; the next I am desperately trying to source 100kg of pinot noir grapes 4 months out of season (for a commercial); I got dressed up as though I was in a Vermeer painting (for a commercial); styling at least 50 dishes in one day for a Christmas ad; holding a yard sale on my street and shifting a piano – “girl-where-you-get-your-strength-from?” said a onlooker… Well I have been wanting to truly pass out these few months on the beach but in the midst of it, while in pre-production, I rode a lovely 4 hour trip to Oxford to Alex James’s farm with Jenny my assistant and best bud Aggie to make the starter for the supper club at The Big Feastival and there, a fluke of luck, I met with Jamie Oliver.
After demo-ing a few summer rolls to the lovely chefs at Jamie’s Fifteen, who then took charge and made 60 rolls for the guests at the Feastival Supper Club – all in aid of The Jamie Oliver Foundation, I was bursting for a drink and dived towards the fridge where Jamie’s back was facing me. I had no idea he was there but he kindly introduced himself, thinking, who is this person raiding my drinks? I had to trigger his memory a little but he remembered filming with me years
ago at my own supper club that I started in 2009.
I gave him my book, My Vietnamese Kitchen and he was full of compliments of the production, Clare Winfield‘s beautiful photography and my food styling. I was chuffed, really chuffed and excited to the bare bone of me. I couldn’t stop smiling – I think my cheek muscles must have seized up by the end of it. Imagine, signing a book for Jamie-bloody-Oliver! I couldn’t believe it. Usually I write long messages on them but this time, I couldn’t think of anything, just “For Jamie, Love Uyen.” Bloody hell! He’s my hero and that was all I could ruster up!
What is Jamie like? Asks. Everyone! He is a very lovely bloke with lots of manners; he’s so much fun to be around and he really appreciates people.
I had so much fun at The Big Feastival and wish I could have stayed longer (the entire weekend). I made summer rolls with prawns, green mango, lots of Vietnamese herbs; curried veggie swirls and a chicken salad. James Ramsden did a main course of slow cooked pork and Alice Levine did a lovely meringue dessert. It was planned that I do a book signing and live demo on The Big Kitchen stage but I had to rush back after dancing to You Can’t Hurry Love with the girls, wine bottles in hand, back towards our driver who took us home. I was on set the next morning at 630am but it was all so worth it (styling 50 dishes in one day- jeez, that was tough).
Thank you to The Big Feastival and all at Taste London for having me and accommodating me. Thank you to Kim Somauroo & Laura Field for all their home ec help. And of course to Jamie Oliver for his kindness.
hehe.. yay…. 🙂
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