The Weekend Australian - Travel - - Front Page -

Tr­ish’sParisKitchen: Belfast na­tive Tr­ish De­seine fell in love with Paris when she moved there 20 years ago. Now dubbed the French Martha Ste­wart she teaches view­ers how to cook like the most con­fi­dent of French­women. Wed­nes­day, 8pm, Life­Style Food.

Lidia’sI­taly: Lidia does a spot of food shop­ping in Rome be­fore whip­ping up sausage with fen­nel and olives and a lus­cious ri­cotta cake. Thurs­day, 4.30pm, Life­Style Food. — a spin-off of the Bri­tish re­al­ity cook­ery show of the same name— is due to air on Chan­nel 10 at the start of May and, un­like the Bri­tish pro­duc­tion, it will have a host, the for­mer ed­i­tor of the Aus­tralian Cos­mopoli­tan mag­a­zine, Sarah Wil­son.

And how do Aussie home cooks com­pare with their Bri­tish coun­ter­parts? In terms of cre­ativ­ity, par­tic­u­larly, very favourably, re­ports Pre­ston. ‘‘ One of the guys we saw is an in­dige­nous cook­ing ex­pert. He was com­ing back from the fish mar­ket, got the car to stop, then leapt out and grabbed pa­per­bark from a tree and a hand­ful of na­tive grasses. He came back and cooked his snap­per wrapped in the bark, with this weird aromatic grass be­tween the bark and the fish.’’ Weird aromatic grass? De­tec­tive hopes no judges were harmed— or even slightly im­paired — dur­ing the mak­ing of this pro­gram.

FIND of the week: Paris, Tokyo, Barcelona . . . Par­ra­matta? The west­ern Syd­ney sub­urb is not im­me­di­ately syn­ony­mous with the world’s culi­nary cap­i­tals, but an op­ti­mistic new mar­ket­ing cam­paign by Par­ra­matta City Coun­cil is pitch­ing the re­gion, with its mul­ti­cul­tural mix of cafes and restau­rants, as Syd­ney’s lead­ing food des­ti­na­tion. Timed for the release of the 2009 edi­tion of the Par­ra­matta City Din­ing Guide, mayor Tony Issa de­clares, ‘‘ Par­ra­matta and its ad­join­ing sub­urbs of­fer a range of cui­sine un­matched by any other re­gion of Syd­ney.’’ Fight­ing words in­deed. De­tec­tive is gear­ing up for a recce. www.par­rac­­ing.

DE­TEC­TIVE loves: The de­lec­ta­ble hand­made cho­co­lates pre­sented in swish lime-green and brown boxes from Bris­bane’s Bit­ter­sweet: The Chocolate Bou­tique. The per­fect gift for that stylish choco­holic friend. www.bit­ter­sweetchoco­

DE­TEC­TIVE loathes: That Amer­i­can La­treasa Good­man called 911 three times to com­plain af­ter pay­ing for a 10-piece McDon­ald’s Chicken McNuggets meal and find­ing they’d run out of McNuggets. Good­man, due to ap­pear in court charged with mis­us­ing the US emer­gency num­ber, al­legedly told po­lice: ‘‘ This is an emer­gency. If I would have known they didn’t have McNuggets I wouldn’t have given them my money, and now she wants to give me a McDou­ble but I don’t want one. This is an emer­gency.’’

De­tec­tive shud­ders to think what would hap­pen if Good­man’s cat got stuck up a tree.

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