Matthew Evans

Food writer & TV host

Matthew Evans is a former chef and food critic turned Tasmanian smallholder. He fattens pigs, milks a cow, tends a garden and writes about food from his office overlooking the silver birches atop his cottage on Puggle Farm, in the gorgeous Huon Valley. Matthew is the author of nine books on food, including the authoritative Real Food Companion, his autobiography Never Order Chicken on a Monday, and the recently co-authored Gourmet Farmer Deli Book. He writes regularly for Feast magazine, and spends much of his week setting up another 70 acre piece of land as a mixed farm under the name Fat Pig Farm. Matthew attends markets and food festivals, sometimes in his hot red 1980s Fat Pig food van, specialising in old and rare breed pork. He has recently finished filming the third series of the SBS television series Gourmet Farmer. Matthew’s other project is A Common Ground, an artisan Tasmanian foodstore he co-owns with Nick Haddow, which also specialises in regional produce events. Matthew is a strong believer in Real Food; food where the provenance is known and the producer valued. He believes in home cooking, using the seasons and your geography as the guide. It is his hope that more and more people will try to grow their own food (just start with parsley and go from there), or know exactly where their produce is coming from.

120blog entries

Gourmet Farmer: Back in the game

The little one, believe it or not, is a real chicken’s egg. Not a quail egg or a finch egg. A chicken egg. Sometimes, because chickens can have quite a few eggs passing through their system at the same time, in increasing rates of maturity, a...
We’re back in the egg game seriously now. With the passage of the shortest day a while back, the birds started laying more conscientiously. So it’s luminescent omelettes, golden cakes and saffron coloured dippy eggs once again. In the lean times...

Gourmet Farmer: No Gandhi

Funny how you get edited. Once I was the writer, now I’m occasionally quoted. In a lovely recent article that appeared in Fairfax Media, on what’s in my pantry, there was a bit on who has inspired me. A couple of people I included were taken off...
Here are just a few of my local heroes, starting with those edited out of the piece.Terry O’Neill, the neighbour whose market garden I pass every day, who inspires quietly through his knowledge and humility. If my garden is one day 1/8th as good...

Gourmet Farmer: Alice & Elsie

I’m a bit disappointed in my broccoli. In only the second year of having a garden at Fat Pig Farm, the broccoli plants are big and blousy. The broccoli heads are fat and tight. And I’m not happy.
Why? Because they look just like the picture on the pack. Never before have our brassicas looked so much like the commercial varieties. Rarely does anything we grow resemble what you might find on a supermarket shelf. But, and it’s partly our...

Gourmet Farmer: The leaves are turning

The long dry summer has given way to emerald green paddocks, but, still, most farms could do with a bit of rain. Our apples are just about finished on the trees. The quince are in, most rescued green from the parrots and the possums.
We’ve harvested the first broccoli, the first cabbage; both while the tomato plants are still hanging from hooks in the shed, as we ripen the last few for the table. We’ve spun the honey from the hive, and left the bees enough to get them through...

Gourmet Farmer: So many births

Birth. More birth. More and more and more births. We had 14 piglets over the space of a couple of days. Our youngest and oldest sows decided to farrow (give birth) at pretty much the same time. The youngest moved from her warm, insulated shelter...
On the opposite hill, bigger animals were birthing. Due on or after one Friday, all six of our calves were born early or on the date. Mallee, the bull who came on loan from a mate, has left his reputation untarnished. The first calf surprised me,...