Spaghetti Carbonara with Tomato and Basil


“They stemmed the flow of my alcohol rich blood with the aid of a kitchen towel roll tied to my head with electrical tape and gave me a pint of Irish whiskey and waited until I passed out.”

electric tomatoes

There is something to be said about blue water sailing, to be amongst the elements far out to sea with the waxing and waning of the moon. Wooden boats and iron men as they used to say. Now much more plastic boats and plastic men, but the thrill is still the same. That being said, there is something pretty fantastic about being stuck in port for six months within walking distance of a pub and with not a guest to be seen. This is exactly how I finished yachting on what was to be one of my favorite gigs with an awesome bunch of people, siting at the dock in the birth place of pesto genovese or simply put, Pesto. In the Italian city of Genoa.

spaghetti carbonara with tomato basil

Now don’t go all “goo gah” on me because it’s Italy, like you guys seem to love to do. Spend enough time in Italy and you will quickly learn that nothing works, everyone is a con artist and its really hard to find a fekking salad. Unless slice tomatoes on a plate is your idea of salad then knock your socks off, book a flight cause the salads are awesome. So as Italian cities go Genoa is some what of a shit hole.

spaghetti carbonara with tomato basil

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Crispy Duck with Candied Orange Raspberry Sauce

crispy duck with candied orange raspberry sauce

“Are you thinking some Peking duck action from Chinatown right now?”

candied orange

So I get a call from a mate who lives down in Boston. Not a new mate, an old mate from my home town in Australia, we’ve known each other since we were kids. Him a couple years younger, my brothers age but he spent most of his growing up at our house and standing in front of our fridge. We did all the things boys in high school do, before moving on. After high school we took very different paths but we both traveled a lot and we just so happened to wind up in New England and call her home.

crispy duck

Now the pure coincidence that a childhood best friend from a dusty farming town in the middle of Australia is only a skip and jump away from me, both of us 10,000 miles from where we grew up…now that my friends very much gives me something to be thankful for.

Something I pull out each and every year since landing in America and throw in the “Thanksgiving hat” so to speak. This is no small thing and you’re probably wondering why I bring up Thanksgiving in June. See we as Australians don’t celebrate this day of giving thanks, no not at all, not in the very slightest. Not because we have better things to do or lack appreciation for what we have, simply because the Mayflower never arrived in Sydney harbor; no pilgrims on our doorstep. So as this thing of thanks is something I’m not entirely used to, I like to really save up a couple of things to be thankful for throughout the year and pull them out to throw in the Thanksgiving ring, show you all that I am up for the occasion.

Okay so waaaayyyy off topic, but I’m glad we shared that moment.

So as I was saying,
said mate (Wax) gives me a shout, “Hey I’m coming to the mountains!” Just so happens Wax is still playing Rugby and there is a tournament on ……… and that tournament just so happens to be In. My. Village.

What!? My wee mountain village of 1100 strong hosts a bloody Rugby tournament for all of New England? Holy crap how fecking awesome is that. Now I’ve got two things to be thankful for this year. Three if I count the wife.

Unfortunately I’m busy on the day which is a major bummer, doing all sorts of businessy business stuff a couple of hours away in Vermont, but I should be back in time I say, to catch him and the boys having a run in the afternoon. Bit of a round about story but this actually brings me to duck and this post.

crispy duck with candied orange raspberry sauce

Let me start by saying that duck is the first thing I’ll gravitate to while scrolling through a menu, always. I love this damn bird and it’s rich flavour and crispy skinned goodness. I don’t care if it comes Thai and curried, Chinese and crispy or French and confit. I love preparing it, serving it and eating it up. Such a versatile ingredient that always makes you look like a pro from starters to main course and even dessert, that’s right I said it. Duck fat caramels, yes it’s a thing!

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