A PR consultant by day, Zina Zhang spends her evenings and weekends scoping out new and exciting food adventures for her blog tasted by two, which she runs with her partner in crime, Felix Sisavanh. With a background in travel journalism, Zhang’s passion for writing, photography, travel and food is evident in the colourful yet informed reviews and recipes featured on the blog.
Your secret food shame"¦
Macarons. It took me six attempts before I got the hang of these and when I did, I made them every weekend for three months straight.
Ingredient you can't live without"¦
Coriander. I used to hate it as a child but now I can’t cook without it.
What inspires you and your food?
Other food blogs! Whenever I need inspiration for a new dish, I hop onto Tastespotting and trawl through the thousands of recipes submitted by foodies all over the world.
What can you learn about a person from the way they prepare their food?
I believe we create our best dishes when we cook from the heart.
What is the recipe you most like to cook?
A favourite recipe of ours is beef bourguignon. We usually prepare the ingredients in the morning before work and with the help of a slow cooker, we come home in the evenings to a tasty stew with hardly any effort at all.
What is your favourite recipe..
To impress? Dark chocolate fondants. Rich, dark and decadent – it’s the ultimate dessert!
To comfort? Pho (Vietnamese beef noodle soup). There’s nothing more comforting and satisfying.
For an easy weeknight dinner? Wok tossed vegies with chicken and rice.
What chef has been your inspiration?
Nigella Lawson. Her passionate and unfussed approach to cooking (and eating!) is a real inspiration. Her shows are always a joy to watch.
Tell us about your favourite food event in Australia.
Taste of Sydney is an event we always look forward to. With so many top restaurants taking part, it’s a great way to sample their signature dishes in a fun and relaxed atmosphere. Another fantastic event we went to recently was the Rocks Vintage Dinner, which showcased dishes from Sake, Pony, Wine Odyssey, Baroque and Le Renaissance Patisserie.
Your favourite cookbook, food show and cooking utensil...
Cookbook: David Thompson’s Street Thai Food.
Food show: It’s a toss between Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations and SBS's Food Safari.
Cooking utensil: My hand mixer, without it I’d be lost!
Can you tell us your favourite restaurant in your area?
It’s not in our area, but an area we often frequent is Bankstown. There’s Pho An, a 250-odd capacity restaurant serving only pho cuisine; My Canh for tasty authentic Vietnamese staples (the tamarind prawns and fish clay pot are unmissable); and Chehade El Basha & Sons Sweets for the best baklava and boukaj in Sydney.