It’s now only 11 sleeps til the big #WASignatureDish final to be held at the Perth Cultural Centre on Monday, June 2nd as part of the WA Day Celebrations. Representing the Great Southern after emerging victorious from the regional final is Clare King.
Clare won with her hero ingredient of Butterfield Beef with a dish she called ‘Celebration Fillet Of Beef- Thai Style’. It looks so delicious!
Let’s hear a little more from Clare ahead of the big grand final…..
Have you been a passionate at home cook for a while now?
Very much so. I have always been very interested in how my mother did things in the kitchen and was always the one helping her cook when I was little. There is nothing more satisfying than hearing family and friends enjoy something that you gave made.
How big an influence do you think cooking shows are having on people getting into the kitchen more and experimenting?
A lot. I for one am a bit obsessive when it comes to cooking programs. Probably not so much the reality tv shows (I find sometimes the food gets a bit lost in the drama!) but I do think those types of shows have helped people get into food a bit more. I constantly have the food channel on at home and am always jotting down an idea or recipe from Rick Stein,Nigella, Jamie, Gordon etc.
As a beef farmer, Butterfield Beef can’t have been a hard choice as a hero ingredient, but were you leaning towards any others when you first thought about entering?
No didn’t give another ingredient a thought! When I heard about the comp this particular dish sprang to mind and being ‘Beef-a-holics’ in our family it really was the only dish that to us was really a signature dish. We live and breath all things cattle and beef in our family so there really wasn’t another option.
Tell us a bit more about wall the day in the life of a beef farmer?
A lot of ups and downs! At present we are calving which means a lot of checking and ensuring the cows are calving ok. The odd time when you do have to assist a cow calving it can be quite satisfying getting a live calf out. On the other side of the coin of course is that some do die. But that’s life! It’s a great thing to be able to raise cattle from start to finish and appreciate the quality of the product at the end.
How many practice runs have you had so far of your signature dish?
Hmmm about three. But countless times prior to the competition! It’s a family favourite. It’s really been great tweaking it and improving it for the competition though.
What have you enjoyed most about this competition so far?
I enjoyed the practice session I had with Silas at Forest Hill. It was a lot more relaxed and we really went over the dish. It was great to be in a chefs kitchen getting advice and tips from an expert! It was a lot less stressful than the regional final.
What makes produce from the Great Southern stand out for you?
The variety. The very forgiving climate and good rainfall means that there is a lot of scope for many things. I think livestock in particular is a standout. The area is a huge producer of cattle and sheep (also pigs and chickens) and they do well on a longer grass feeding season than most areas.
I really enjoyed hearing more about Clare’s story and her passion for cooking and local produce. I wish her all the very best for the grand final and I”ll be there cheering her on 🙂