Monday, 11 August 2014

I laugh, I cry, I seldom understand things but it is more and more a sort of comfort

Perspective. It has a lot going for it.

How we see things, or more importantly, how we choose to see things can depend on a lot. I wonder, perhaps, if it's about training ourselves to look for the good and not be bowled over by the negative.

I like to think I am optimistic, a seeker of possibility, a practitioner of wonder and awe, but sometimes I have a habit of noticing and dwelling on the one dark cloud I see in an otherwise blue sky. Maybe it's when I am tired. Or already a little emotional for whatever reason. The scales tip in favour of the half empty glass.

Last night I went to the fifth Dinner Project. I have been to three of them. I have written about it here before. The Dinner Project is an Australian not-for-profit venture raising money for charities through dinners created by chefs who donate their time, energy and innovation for the greater good. Chef, Thi Li started the Project in Sydney, brought it to Melbourne and has been very ably assisted here by pastry chef, Kimberly Chin. 

Last night's dinner showcased chefs from Luxembourg, The European, RACV Club, Stokehouse and Cutler & Co and was held at B’Stilla in South Yarra. Four courses offering fish, meat, heirloom vegetables, a variety of textures, colours and flavours with beautiful beverages to match.  

All profits are going to SANE Australia.  Thi and Kim both feel that that people who work in the hospitality industry are often subject to high stress levels and antisocial working hours which can lead to mental health problems and they would like to support a group that is working to improve mental health.

The reason I mention The Dinner Project, apart from the obvious fact that Thi and Kim see life from a different perspective and seek to use their talent and experience to bring goodness to others, is that I ate a dish which blew me away. And this dish was the result of a mistake. 

Mark Glenn from The European roasted heirloom carrots over coffee beans to give them a woody, toasted flavour. He experimented with a blueberry sauce which didn't quite go the way he expected, but in fact turned out better than his original idea. His carrot, shitake, jerusalem artichoke, coffee and grain dish was the entrée. For me it was the stand-out dish of the night. And he was competing with a blue eye cod and prawn boudin, a bavette with charred radicchio and fennel and a rhubarb cake, ginger soil, ginger custard and creme fraîche sorbet.

Sometimes the wrong train takes you to the right destination and a step backwards, well that's the first step in a cha cha.


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