Welcome to my website. I am the author of ‘Vietnamese – Simple Vietnamese Food To Cook At Home’. I am a photographer and film maker. You can book into my supper club, Vietnamese cooking classes, buy my book, check out my photography and lots more here.
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These Three Years, People Of The Supper Club & A Donald Russell BBQ
I have met some incredible people in the last three years. It is three years this week! Three years ago, I invited some friends over for a feast, dessert didn’t come till 1am as at that time, we certainly didn’t know what we were doing but true loyalty and friendship stuck and as time went by and the more the supper club happened, I gained more and more experience in cooking, writing, photographing and blogging.
Three years on and looking back, I have had the most amazing time of my life in so many ways. From tears of pain to tears of joy. To those moments where I couldn’t face chopping another onion or make another pot of pho; to those where I met people I will know and love for the rest of my life. I vividly remember when someone sang so beautifully and emotionally, This Year’s Love on my out-of-tune piano (that my mother had saved up and gifted to me as a teenager, hoping that I would become a star). He touched my heart so much, tears fell violently down my face. To a moment when my hero, Jamie Oliver, my friend Mia and me were carrying down plates of food from the kitchen to the dinning room. We had to wait for the camera to roll so we waited on the stairs, chit chatting and I remember thinking and looking into Jamie’s eyes, jeez, I thought, the carpet (then filled with stains of food being carried up and down the stairs) Jamie thinks the carpet is really dirty! Because it was : )
I have met some of the most incredible people, some are now dear friends of mine. How else would I have met an agent for comedians, cancer research doctors, pathologists, many lawyers, publishers of my favourite books, singers of great songs, architects of beautiful innovative buildings, wine lovers, composers, opera and classical music conductors, writers, great chefs, app makers, journalists, editors, film makers, photographers, environmental workers, politicians, lobbyists, food critics… the list is endless.
Even though I am astounded by all the lovely, wonderful and creative people who have walked through my door and have eaten my food, I feel more proud of the fact that it doesn’t really matter what someone does for a living because no matter which walk of life you belong, there is a unison in my dinning room, a joy and a love for food that brings everyone there together. I find most people I have met to be delightful, warm and really really nice. I am always touched by people who often bring me flowers, chocolates, cheese and things they’ve baked or cooked. Then I would get the nicest thank you emails or hand written letters sent in the post. People have traveled long distances to eat my food. Once a beautiful eighty- something year old lady had traveled 4 hours in the car to see me. Her family knew how much she missed her travels to Vietnam and how much she loves Vietnamese food so had brought her all the way. Or those who flew over from far far away lands and end here, somewhere in London Fields, it could look like the ends of the earth to those whose never been to Hackney!
And now, three years later, the supper club still happens every Friday, people still book to come, word of mouth still spreads. I’ve met and connected with some great people who have opened doors for me and its all lead me to become even more busier than ever, more creative and very excited! What I do depends on the day of the week. Sometimes I am a stylist, sometimes I am a photographer, a film maker, a writer, a consultant, a cook…. I never know what the day brings but it always brings something.
As a treat to some of friends, those I have known for decades to those I have met in the last three years, I threw a barbecue. Unfortunately, it was on the rainiest day of the year and my dog Kodi, the white West Highlander, caught and proudly killed his first rat in the garden (I do live in Hackney after all, he is the gangsta rap on this East side of town). However, forty people ate the best barbecue ever, courtesy of Donald Russell whom I visited in Aberdeen on a butchery masterclass a few months ago. As I have previously mentioned, they do really really good meat. I swear by them and seeing as they have a royal warrant, I needn’t say much more.
As I am always cooking, I tend to try to do as little as possible (especially) at barbecues or dinner parties so I can spend time with my friends. I wrote to everyone and gave them a list of things to bring along including drinks and the odd ketchup, spices, ice cubes and lemon and limes. Everyone obliged apart from the weather. The boys fired up the barbie (boys are always very sexy in front of a fire, they become men) and o my goodness, said everyone! Hmmmm noises were all you could hear around the house as the condiments went to waste. No one wanted to eat the meat with anything other than itself because it was just utterly mouthwateringly succulently delicious! Its like butter melting in your mouth people would say or yumm or delicious or o.m.g, wow, etc etc. The best noises ever!
We must have had about 30 kg of meat, from tafelspitz, rib eye, rump steak, lamb racks, noisettes, valentines to pork sausages and beef burgers. I love those sausages! And on behalf of all my friends and I, truly, highly recommend the barbecue meat selection from Donald Russell or any meat from Donald Russell! Its incredible! You order it online at their website and its delivered to your door: www.donaldrussell.com
my boys from St Martins, all grown up and becoming daddies!
Thank you Donald Russell for letting me treat my friends and to thank them for all the support they have given me during my three years of cooking like a maniac!
I am the luckiest person! I am so thankful and grateful for all those who have supported me and everyone who has been to the supper club and the cooking classes and who keep coming back.
I am most thankful to my mum and my brother and my waiters/ waitresses who always help me in the kitchen, for without them, I would be quite stuck!
Thank you Thank you Thank you Hope there will be loads more fun to be had.