This week in SBS Food’s Blog Appétit – our round up of food blogs worth bookmarking – we bring you My Darling Lemon Thyme.
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20 Jan 2014 - 2:27 PM  UPDATED 2 Sep 2014 - 2:22 PM

When Perth-based former chef Emma Galloway discovered her children were lactose- and gluten-intolerant, she set about changing her family’s diet, combining her professional know-how with fresh, seasonal produce. Emma, already vegetarian and raised in rural New Zealand where natural ingredients abound, rose to the task. In 2010, a friend encouraged her to start a blog to share her wholesome, wholefood recipes. Today, her feel-good (and broadly appealing) dishes, rustic styling and bright images inspire fans across the world. Her first cookbook, My Darling Lemon Thyme - Recipes from My Real Food Kitchen (Harper Collins), is set for release April of this year. Here, she shares restorative recipes to start 2014 on good footing.

“The start of the new year is when many people assess their lifestyle and try to opt for a healthier diet. In my opinion, food needn’t become rigid and boring because of this! By selecting fresh seasonal and local fruits and vegetables, and preparing them simply, ‘heath food’ can be vibrant, exciting and full of flavour. In my family, over summer, we make smoothies every day. We also love salads, the simplest of which can be brought to life with just a squeeze of lemon, a handful of mint leaves and a kick of chilli. For dessert, I go fruit-based, inspired by the season’s bounty. When looking for healthy inspiration, I also can’t go past the freshness of Vietnamese food. With just a few ingredients, a whole meal can be easily and quickly prepared. Not only are they nourishing, they’re super tasty, too.”

 

I started my blog to...

“Share the things I love in life – food, telling stories and the odd little piece about organic gardening.”

 

The must-cook recipe on my website is

“My roasted cauliflower, chickpea and quinoa salad with jalapeño-lime dressing.”

 

I can’t wait to go back to

“Vietnam to drink mango, coconut and passionfruit shakes sitting on teeny tiny plastic stools in a dingy alley. It’s the best.”

 

My current food obsession is

“Raw caramel slice.”

 

Nugget of cooking wisdom?

“Buy local, prepare simply.”

 

I learnt to cook...

“Healthy, seasonal vegetarian food from my mother, traditional Vietnamese food from my mother-in-law and gluten-free cooking from trial and error!”

 

When I go back to my home town...

“Raglan, New Zealand, the first thing I eat are feijoas [pineapple guava]. I even timed our last trip home to coincide with their brief-but-beautiful season.”

 

Friends always ask me to cook my...

“Tomato kasundi. It’s world famous – at least in Raglan, New Zealand.”

 

I always have

“Brown rice syrup in my pantry, homemade kimchi and sourdough starter in my fridge, and bananas in my freezer.”

 

My favourite biscuit to dunk in a cup of tea is...

“Gingernuts.”

 

My most sauce-splattered cookbook is...

“A handwritten recipe ‘bible’ that I’ve had since I was a teenager. It’s filled with all my mum’s recipes, as well as the recipes I picked up over my years working as a chef.

 

“I also have to mention my own (and first) cookbook: My Darling Lemon Thyme - Recipes from My Real Food Kitchen (Harper Collins). It’s a collection of 100 of my favourite recipes (nearly all of which have not been seen previously on my blog) that reflect my philosophy that natural, whole foods should be flavoursome, fun and easy to prepare.”

 

The most difficult food to shoot/style and make look tasty are...

“Cookies. They’re just so flat and, well, brown. Plus, I don’t really get the whole pilling them up and tying with twine thing.”

 

Check out My Darling Lemon Thyme.