This is why I live here…

This blog is not about food, it’s about people. It’s about the “Tassie” part of being a Tassievore, and why I live where I live. But it begins with a cheesecake.  

The beautiful berry cheesecake was waiting on my doorstep when I arrived home last night, along with a handwritten note from a new neighbour. I was so surprised and excited that I immediately called my boyfriend to brag about it. Then I panicked. I didn’t know what the appropriate gesture of thanks was – it was like I’d stumbled into some sort of sacred ritual, a kind of suburban Australian equivalent of a Japanese Tea Ceremony. I did what seemed to be the only logical thing, and dashed to the kitchen to make a batch of honey spice biscuits (recipe below) and popped over to return the favour.

Having lived most of my life in one of the largest cities in Australia, I’ve always felt that “being neighbourly” is a rare and prized gift. I was fortunate to grow up in a neighbourly sort of place, but it was certainly an exception to the general rule of City Anonymity. A friend of mine in Melbourne frequently visits the supermarket in his pyjamas because he is absolutely certain he will never bump into anyone he knows. In contrast, I rarely get to my letterbox without a wave and a friendly shout from across the street. 

In Tasmania, acting neighbourly seems to be standard, and the locals don’t always realise just how special that is. The cheesecake wasn’t the first Random Act of Neighbourliness that I’ve experienced since being here, in fact it wasn’t even the first this week. But every time it happens I feel a little wave of gratitude and I promise never to take it for granted.

I moved to Tasmania for pragmatic reasons, but I have stayed for emotive ones. There’s something special about those Random Acts of Neighbourliness that turn a suburb into a community, and this is why I live here.

This weekend, go and get neighbourly. Head out to the farmers market and say g’day to the people who grow your dinner. Drop over to an old friend’s house for a cuppa and a catch up. Or maybe make a batch of honey spice biscuits and go introduce yourself to your neighbours… It’s the Tasmanian thing to do.


Neighbourly Honey Spice Biscuits (makes enough to share with friends)

½ cup sugar (challenge: if anyone can substitute or reduce sugar further let me know and I’ll update the recipe!)

1 cup Tamanian honey

2 free range eggs

2 tablespoons of local olive oil

3 cups plain flour (Callington mill)

1 ½ teaspoons of baking soda

½ teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon each of allspice, cinnamon, cloves and ground ginger

  1. In a large bowl, beat honey, sugar, eggs and oil.
  2. Combine all the dry ingredients, and gradually add to the honey mixture, mix well
  3. Pop into the fridge for 2 hours to cool (or the freezer for 20 minutes if you’re in a rush)
  4. Heat oven to 180 degrees
  5. Roll dough into small balls (around 1 inch) and place on baking tray about 2 inches apart.
  6. Bake for 8-10 minutes until golden.

Totally Tasmanian Picnic

Wow, it has been 2 weeks already since we launched the Tassievore Eat Local Challenge at the Totally Tassie Picnic and I realised that we haven’t put any photos up yet…sorry!

Our amazing spread of Tassie goodness

For those of you who missed it, below are some photos of the wonderful spread of Tasmanian treats that we had on offer and some of our picnickers.

A huge thank you to all of the generous local producers and businesses who contributed to our  beautiful spread!  The Naked Carrot donated their fabulous sprouts; Kevin Vaughn supplied an amazing selection of salad greens from his garden; The Picnic Basket not only let us borrow their picnic baskets, but also filled them with fresh bread and dips! Companion Bakeryin Oatlands donated some delicious pides, Gondwanaland supplied walnuts and Celina Sargeant shared her home-pressed olive oil.

Lucky us…such amazing food we have in Tasmania!

Senator Christine Milne joined in the picnic

The Terry family brought their own picnic food including homemade sparkling rhubarb…yum!

Greetings from the North West

Hi all,

the Tassievore Challenge blog posts and social media are coming at you from the North West of the State this week. (Though I am sure the North and South will not keep any juicy news from you!)

What’s going on up here??

We are gloriously spoilt up here sandwiched between Bass Straight and bountiful paddocks full of lush produce. Last week I was privileged to speak at one of the first Food Strategy Networking meetings, attended by 30 + locals all with an interest in growing, selling, living in sustainable Tassie ways.


 Guest speakers included Catherine Stark from Seven Sheds Brewery, Tony O’Neil from Cradle Coast Olives, Eliza and Guy from Mt Gnomon Farm and fab Central Coast Council Mayor Jan Bonde -because this group is being led by The Central Coast Council.

There were cafe owners (Thirty Three Cups, Pier 01– who hosted the event), a local feijoa grower, Ashgrove Cheese, Brandsema Tomatoes, local gourmet food tour operators….it was quite a room!

I got to put on my Tassievore Challenge hat (but couldn’t help but talk a little bit of Produce to the People).  Let’s just say there was a lot of love in the room for the whole notion of eating local for the next six months and beyond!

Hopefully we will have a list of NW producers on show very soon.

Cheers for now, and grow, gather, give!






The Challenge Begins….what fun!!


So, we launched the Tassievore Eat Local Challenge at the Sustainable Living Festival last weekend.  As the Festival Director, I was completely buggered afterward and the first meal or two are a bit of a blur…I think toasted cheese and eggs featured prominently.  But, then I got to have a couple of days off…recovery!  This gave me time to cook up a Tassievore storm…Roasted beet, carmelised onion, kate, lemon zest, fetta and walnut pizza; artichoke pesto; muesli;  garlic aioli; honey oat bickies and “ranch” dressing were among my first Tassievore makings.  I was keen to make a few things that can just sit in the fridge and be used to liven up bread, cheese and eggs, which I think may be my new staples as a vegetarian Tassievore.  Excitingly the Artichoke Pesto I could virtually make from my garden. I’ll try to remember to include the recipe below as well as the Honey Oat Bickies…as a sugar addict, sweet treats will be my biggest challenge, I reckon.  BUT my most exciting Tassievore meal, which I really want to share is…..

Tandoori Cauliflower and Mint Chutney with Naan Bread

I’m a bit of a luddite, and with my job being pretty computer based, I tend to not be very online savvy.  I have however been introduced to the My New Roots Blog, by my friend, Sophie.  It is great and definately good for those wanting to eat healthy, seasonal food. Sarah, who writes the blog, is a nutritionist and gives heaps of interesting info about the nutritional benefits of various foods and I have found many an inspiration on this site. The tandoori cauliflower peaked my interest some time ago, but it wasnt’ until last night that I finally tried it out.  The only questionable ingredient is the fresh ginger that I used in the marinade, but surely that is a spice/flavouring…which I am allowing myself!

I am feeling a bit over typing, so will just put in the link to the recipe here…yummm! Happy cooking and eating, Lissa

Naan Bread


  • 2 ¼ tsp active dry yeast
  • ¾ cup plain yogurt
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 1 ½ tsp salt
  • 1 ¼ cup wholemeal flour
  • 3 cups sifted flour


  1. Activate yeast with ¼ cup warm water..leave 10 mins until foamy
  2. Combine ¾ cup hot water, yogurt, butter and salt in bowl, then stir in the yeast and flour ( a bit at a time) until you can turn it out and knead the dough
  3. Knead until smooth, but still slightly tacky.9
  4. Put dough into oiled bowl, cover with tea towel and leave until double in bulk about 1 hour)
  5. Divide into 8-10 balls and let rest 10 minutes
  6. Flatten balls to 12cm thick (rolling pin or hands)
  7. Bake on heated stone or tray @ 210 degrees for 12-15minutes

Honey Oat Bickies


  • 150g butter
  • 150g honey
  • 1/2c wholemeal flour
  • 1/2tsp baking powder
  • 250g oats


  1. Melt butter and stir in honey
  2. Add rest of the ingredients and mix
  3. Spoon onto baking tray, flattening slightly
  4. Bake @ 180 degrees for 8-10minutes.

Tassievore Day 2: I get by with a little help from my friends!

Today is my first proper day on Team Tassievore, as I was in Melbourne over the weekend and missed the Totally Tassie picnic. I also missed the farmers market on Sunday, so my fridge was very barren this morning!

It was looking like a day of bread and water, but luckily I was able to go desk scrumping* and managed to procure myself a handy little assortment of snacks for the day. A lovely crisp apple, a tub of tamar valley yoghurt and a handful of hazelnuts later, and I’ve survived the day quite happily!

I learned my first lesson for Tassievore survival today – get organised and plan ahead! I’m going to make some bircher muesli when I get home tonight, and maybe some home-made gnocchi. Yum!!

* Scrumping (verb): to steal apples from an orchard or garden. “Desk scrumping” is an urban alternative, which involves pilfering food from your colleagues’ desks.


The Middle East/Jordanvore Challenge – by the Travelling Tassievore

The Midde Eastvore/Jordanvore Challenge

Sitting on the apartment balcony late evening as the sun goes down across Amman, Jordan. The desert coloured buildings glow as the sun sets and the ‘Call to Prayer’ echoes across the valley from the mosque next door. Men hurry along the street to the Mosque for evening prayers, the smell of garlic flavoured cooking wafts in the air mingled with aromatic spiced coffee, and in the distance horns sounds from the crazy driving/traffic in the city. Grasping a mug of cardamom flavoured Arabic coffee, some flatbread and hummus and my evening is complete. After spending the days working in a refugee camp near the Syrian border, I am as ever thankful for the little things in life – and how frigging lucky we are to live in Australia.

Out of all of the countries and regions I travel to for work, the Middle East is definitely one of my favourite. The culture and street scenes, being able to wander aimlessly in the souks (markets), the novelty of having aisles of ‘scoop your own’ spices in the supermarket. Food is central to life here, fresh and delectable food, with spices and flavours that I try desperately to recreate at home. Mezze, fresh salads using crisp produce, falafel, hummus and spicy rice – the Middle East vegetarian diet is an absolute delight. And don’t get me started on the cheeses and yoghurt. Haloumi so squeaky your head aches, falafel and schwarma kebabs via some frantic sign language/charades from the Arabic only speaking man for lunch, tangy/sour yoghurt and traditional meat dishes from the Bedouin (desert). Toto we are not in Tasmania anymore, welcome to the tasty and enchanting Middle East.


Taking the Jordanvore Challenge is pretty darn enjoyable. Most restaurants and cafes deliver so you don’t have to deal with the traffic, and the Safeway Supermarket down the road has an amazing produce section with clearly labelled ‘Produce of Jordan’ fruits and vegies, overcrowding the random ‘Bananas from Ecuador’ in the shop. Trucks piled high with produce drive around the streets with recorded Arabic male voices spruiking at high volume in a jumbled blurred angry yell. If you miss the shops the produce comes to you. This is my type of place!

I may be eight hours behind Eastern Standard time in Tassie (and 30 hours in flights/transit) but I’ll still be starting the Challenge – just on a different timezone and slightly modified. By questioning the provenance of my food, buying local, experimenting with different foods and meeting the growers/sellers – and having some fun communicating across the language barriers

Wherever you are and whatever form you decide to do for the Challenge, Good luck! And most importantly, ENJOY! This is YOUR Challenge!

Next stop for this Tassievore, attempting the Israelvore Challenge and then the Turkeyvore Challenge on R&R breaks.

Note: Kym lives in Tasmania but works as an Emergency Nutrition Advisor for a number of organisations, so spends large amounts of time on deployment overseas.


Tomorrow, Tomorrow, It’s only a day away!

Tomorrow’s Sunday right? Unless you’re going to church, you get a sleep in! Then what, not sure?

Well we have just the thing for you!

After sleeping in (or morning jog if that way inclined) come to the Farm Gate Market (Melville and Elizabeth) and grab some Tassie-fare. At 12, join the Farm Gate mascot and the Southern Tassievores in strolling from market to Princess Wharf 1, where we can have ourselves a good old fashioned picnic. Specifically – the Totally Tassie Picnic and launch of the Tassievore Eat Local Challenge. We have some vittles’ kindly donated by local businesses (we love you all!) and a few picnic blankets – but BYO spread and rug just to be sure.

There will be a few known faces among the crowd (it’s not just us randoms that care about supporting Tasmanians!!), some sunshine and a whole lot of happy, shiny faces.

See you soon,

The Tassievores

p.s- weather forecast is good!