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Cookbook Chronicles: Curtis Stone

This charming Australian chef gets up close and personal about cooking, food and life.

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[MUSIC PLAYING] The thing that inspired me to start cooking was my granny. She was from Yorkshire in England. And if anyone that knows Yorkshire will know that the people from there speak their mind. 

So my granny used to say, if you want to eat my fudge, you can help me cook it. So I used to have to measure everything out for her. She used to make this beautiful, sugary fudge. And the only way that she’d make it for me is if I measured out all the ingredients out. 

And I kind of enjoyed it, you know, putting the sugar into the half cup. And I can still picture those Tupperware measuring cups that she had. So, yeah, she got me involved in food. 


There’s always some chocolate in my kitchen. 


I love chocolate. And I think that we all deserve a bit of indulgence once in a while. So chocolate’s always a feature. 

I’ve always got some good organic vegetables. 


I’ve got a farmer’s market just down the road from me. So I’m lucky enough to be able to nick down there twice a week and pick up a bunch of different stuff. And I don’t sort of shop for vegetables thinking I need to, you know, for particular recipes. I just go and buy what looks good and fresh. And then somehow throughout the week, I’ll find a way to use it. 

And the third must-have in my kitchen– ooh, that’s a tough one. I love prosciutto. 


And it’s so adaptable. You can use it in all sorts of cooking. But you can also use it to, you know, serve as an antipasto plate, with some fresh figs if they’re in season, or melon, if that’s in season. Or, you know, if you want to wrap a little chicken breast or something like that, then that also works. So prosciutto’s a good one. 


My comfort food– I’ve got a killer chicken and leek pie recipe that I make once in a while. It’s a nice creamy base. And you can put mushrooms in it or leeks– you know, whatever vegetables that you like. 

And you make it. And it’s really simple to do. You sort of sweat down the onions. And you turn it into a bit of a béchamel sauce– like a white sauce. 

And then you throw in the mushrooms or the leeks. And then take a roast chicken and just pull the meat off the roast chicken, and throw that in as well. And put that into the base of the pie, and then cover it with puff pastry. Ah, it’s to die for. 


Oh, if I was a dish, I would be a spicy crab– it’s a chili pepper crab, because I think life’s a bit more exciting when there’s a bit of spice to it, right? So something that sort of is a little bit picante on the palate. And crab’s one of my favorite things. 

They’re beautiful creatures. They’re big. They’re small. They’re very individual. 

They’re really sweet flavored, you know, beautiful– they’re a bit of work, too, you know? And I think I can be. So– but they’re worth it once you get into the meat. 


I think anybody that loves to eat should make my recipes. The reason is because they’re so simple. My new book’s called “Relaxed Cooking.” And the whole purpose of it is that you’re nice and chilled out when you go shopping, when you’re in the kitchen doing the preparation, and when you’re serving it and sitting down. 

The best host is always the most chilled out, because whenever you got to someone’s home, if they’re having fun, then you feel like you can as well. You know, there’s nothing worse than going to someone’s house, and you see they’re completely frazzled by the whole cooking experience. So anyone that loves to eat and loves to enjoy time with their friends should try my recipes. 


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