Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The Gourmet Garden Cook Off and Greek Zucchini Fritters

Photo: Greek zucchini fritters
Cooking shows weren't very big when I was a little girl but for some reason I used to pretend I was on a cooking show from a young age and talk to myself while I was cooking for our evening meal. My dream of being on a real cooking show came true last Friday when I competed in the Gourmet Garden Blogger's Cook Off at the Brisbane Good Food & Wine Show.
Photo: I'm here @goodfoodwine @freshmadeeasy
The Good Food & Wine Show happens in each capital city around Australia throughout the year and it showcases the best in Australian food and wine and Australia's best chefs, as well as international chefs. To have the opportunity to cook at such an event was a real privilege.
Back in May this year, I took part in a search for Australia's best 'blogger-come-chef'. A 'blog off/cook off' sponsored by Gourmet Garden, the makers of herbs in a tube. Here is the wrap up of what I cooked for the competition. I was very lucky to be selected into the next round of the competition in which 3 heats were held last Friday, Saturday and Sunday. I competed at 4pm on the Friday afternoon against Kirsten from K&Co, another blogger here in Brisbane who just so happens to live close to me.
Photo: At the chopping block @goodfoodwine @freshmadeeasy
Dominique Rizzo (pictured above), a prolific Australian chef and former Masterchef contestant, Skye Craig were the judges.
Photo: Ready to go in 5 mins time @goodfoodwine @freshmadeeasy
The whole thing is a bit of a blur really and I regret not getting more photos of the judges and Kirsten and me with the judges etc etc. I was a little bit excited/nervous/who knows what! We started cooking and making small talk in between frying and mixing. It was a little bit daunting and not at all as I remembered as a young girl but it was heaps and heaps of fun and I'm honoured to have been a part of it. As an extra bonus, my dish of Greek Zucchini Fritters (Kolokithokeftedes) with Tzatziki was declared the winner.
Photo: Judging has commenced
The judges taste testing
Live Instagramming from the competition with Kirsten in the background in striped shirt

All I know, at this stage, is that I will visit the Sunshine Coast in May next year with 8 other Australian bloggers plus some international competitors in further cook offs, including accommodation and expenses. A couple of days talking about food and having a few laughs with some of my favourite bloggers? Yes please. Thanks to Gourmet Garden for the opportunity and thanks to Kirsten for putting up such a good fight. It was a great way to spend an afternoon, even though those bright lights and microphone being shoved in your face is a little daunting.  Any thought I may have given to entering the Australian version of Masterchef might be over now. Here's the recipe.
Greek Zucchini Fritters (Kolokithokeftedes) with Tzatziki
2 medium zucchini, grated100gm feta cheese, grated
50gm parmesan, grated
2 green onions, chopped
2 tbs Gourmet Garden mint
2 tbs Gourmet Garden dill
2 tbs Gourmet Garden garlic
1 egg, beaten
½ cup plain flour
salt and pepper
olive oil for frying
1 cup Greek yoghurt
1 cucumber, peeled, de-seeded and grated
2 tbs Gourmet Garden garlic
1 tbs Gourmet Garden dill
1 tbs Gourmet Garden mint
1 tbs lemon juice
1 tbs olive oil
salt and pepper
Grate zucchini, sprinkle with salt and drain in a colander.
Make up tzatziki and set aside.
Squeeze liquid from grated zucchini.
Mix all ingredients.
Heat oil to a medium heat so fritters will cook thoroughly inside without burning on the outside.
Drop spoonfuls of mixture into pan and cook each side for about 3 minutes.
Make larger sized fritters for a main dish or smaller sized for appetisers.
Drain on absorbent paper. Serve with lemon wedges and Tzatziki.



  1. Oh dear Anne I am so thrilled for you and so, so proud. I can't wait for May next year and what you come up with. You'll be all rock star by then lol. X

  2. Yay Anne - you are a rock star (almost) - Fritters look yum. About to have a glut of zucchini from my snake affected veggie patch so will have to give it a whirl.

  3. How exciting Anne and a HUGE congrats. Keep your eye out for Carolyn from Desire Empire - I have a feeling you two will get on fabulously xx

  4. How fun Anne... your recipes are amazing. You really do have the talent to be a professional chef. So much fun to be on show... all that nice equipment. I've fantasized a food show myself... just thrilling. I'm so happy for you.

  5. What a great write up of the day Anne! It was so much fun and really lovely to meet you. Congrats on winning xx

  6. mmmmm, these sound so simply yummy, Anne!

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  9. What a great time! You Rock! Congratulations on your awesome Greek Zucchini Fritters:) An a expense paid trip to the Sunshine Coast in May!! What excitement. Thanks for sharing and enjoy.

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  15. Anne, just pinned this award winning recipe. How does it feel to be an award winning chef? I can now say I know a celebrity chef! :)

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  20. Congratulations, Anne! That is so exciting! So, will you have to create a new recipe for May's competition or do you use this one again?

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