Chris Gordon’s self-isolation cooking diary: Week 5

Chris Gordon is our events and programming manager extraordinaire, as well as our monthly food and gardening columnist. Here is the latest instalment of her self-isolation cooking diary.


I’ve learned a little more about myself over the last few weeks, and reading Jaclyn Crupi’s excellent book, Nonna Knows Best (available 28 April) has helped me to reaffirm a few of these self-discoveries. Most significantly – it does seem that, despite a very strong British heritage, I am in fact more Mediterranean than Blighty.

I am not stoic in that stiff upper lip kind of way as anyone who has viewed one of my outbursts can attest. In fact, according the the checklist of Nonna-type behaviours outlined in Crupi’s book, I am simply sharing my feelings loudly and am on track to living my best life. This checklist also includes filling the home pantry with preserves (tick), cooking from ingredients in my garden (tick), talking with my hands (tick), playing cards aggressively (tick, I am the Poker Queen) and most importantly giving advice freely and often (tick, tick and tick). I’m all in for the Nonna lifestyle.

One of my favourite recommendations in this sweet book is to keep cooking simple – a sentiment I am fully behind. I also approve of the directive to use a heap of olive oil in everything you do, from pasta sauces to cakes. I tried out Crupi’s recipe for the Olive Oil Cake last week. So easy to put together and the ideal treat for afternoon slump time.

There’s so much to explore in this this book but I’m just going to leave you with one more final thought…

Amore E Famiglia:
A nonna loves her family , her friends, her community and she goes to great lengths to foster and strengthen these relationships. Because love is everything.

This quote seems a perfect reflection for the limbo we all find ourselves living in right now. Eating cake helps too, and maybe a bit of yelling.

Nonna Knows Best

Nonna Knows Best

Jaclyn Crupi

$24.99Buy now

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