Annabel Langbein: The Free Range Cook

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Television -

Tues­day, 7.30pm, Life­Style Food Annabel Langbein is a chef who lives, cooks and makes tele­vi­sion pro­grams in her na­tive New Zealand. Be­tween the first sea­son of this pro­gram and the sec­ond sea­son de­but shown last week, I vis­ited New Zealand’s South Is­land and came home com­pletely in love with Lake Wanaka. I men­tion this be­cause Langbein lives in a cabin on the shores of the very same lake. Of course I don’t hate her — that would be more fatu­ous than any of the char­ac­ters in Geordie Shore (see page 28). I’m just deeply en­vi­ous of her beau­ti­ful wilder­ness life­style. I wouldn’t care if she made bub­ble and squeak in this pro­gram as long as I got to check out that cabin. In fact Langbein makes some scrump­tious-look­ing fare, in­clud­ing her fa­mous cow­boy hash, Moroc­can eggs, veni­son tataki, duck con­fit and a flour­less choco­late cake with rasp­berry coulis. If I’d known you could get pro­duce like this I wouldn’t have come home. des­per­ately miss­ing from our lo­cal fare. Th­ese boys move fast. There’s no in­tro­duc­tion and seem­ingly no end to their in­ven­tive­ness. That first sketch — about zom­bies pulling down a cy­clist and eat­ing his en­trails while he is still alive — was at once shat­ter­ing and a sharp satire on the lu­di­crous­ness of pop­u­lar genre pro­grams such as The Walk­ing Dead. Then, as in this episode, it’s just crash-bang-wal­lop through scenes such as a Some Like it Hot­style dream se­quence of men in hats and tow­els pass­ing as women in a fe­male locker room — un­til they are hor­ri­fy­ingly ex­posed. Then there’s the work­place of re­cur­ring char­ac­ter Char­lie, a pas­sive-ag­gres­sive of­fice nerd who wouldn’t be out of place in The Of­fice. An ac­quired taste, per­haps, but worth the trou­ble. through. The im­pro­vised ex­plo­sive de­vice is the No 1 killer of soldiers and civil­ians in Afghanistan. Meet the tough guys who live with the threat of death ev­ery day.

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