Hello.  I have a friend.  His name is Fatboybakes.

Project Nigella 1

Fatboybakes loves to cook.

Project Nigella 3

Fatboybakes loves to watch Nigella cooking.  Fatboybakes loves Nigella.

Project Nigella 2


Behold Nigella!

Nigella's Christmas Kitchen 1
(Photo credit: courtesy of Discovery Travel & Living)

If you’re like Fatboybakes and you love to cook and you love Nigella, set your scheduler for 7.00pm (Malaysian time) today and tune in to Channel 707 on Astro to catch NIGELLA’S CHRISTMAS KITCHEN 2 on Discovery Travel & Living.  (Repeats on Mondays at 1400 hrs (2:00 pm), Tuesdays at 0200 hrs (2:00 am) and 0500 hrs (5:00 am) and Saturdays at 0200 hrs (2:00 pm) and 1400 hrs (2:00 pm).) Nigella reveals tips on how to avoid the Christmas queues (although at this point, with just 12 days to Christmas, it’s a bit too late lah as the malls will be bursting with last minute shoppers like me ack!) and the lure of the jingling tills by getting back to basics.   In addition, watch her liven up traditional Christmas recipes (or just watch her) after being inspired on trips to Paris and Salzburg.

I’ll probably catch these episodes to get ideas on cooking castrated chicken (capon).  Not that I’m cooking it myself.   Not when there’s a better cook around in the form of my mother-in-law whom I love very very much.

NIGELLA’S CHRISTMAS KITCHEN 2 – episode descriptions as provided by Discovery Travel & Living:

The Big Freeze
Cooking at Christmas is a wonderful piece of slow-down therapy but that doesn’t mean that you have to be tied to the stove the entire time.  Getting ahead and filling the freezer can be the answer to a Christmas prayer.  In The Big Freeze, Nigella whips up a feast that includes Roast Pumpkin and Sweet Potato Soup with a Stilton swirl, Mincemeat pies and her Star from the East, and a Lamb and Date Tagine, which are all wonderful to either eat straight away or to store in the freezer for the arrival of last-minute guests.
The Stocking Filler
Nigella Lawson starts early by filling her shelves with homemade Beetroot and Ginger Chutney, Chilli Jelly, Spiced Fruits steeped in Ximinez Sherry and Winter Spiced Vodka.  Nigella also makes her Christmas ‘Puddin’ Truffles and Christmas cookies, showing that Christmas doesn’t have to come off the shelf.  Later, Nigella opens her doors to a few friends for a pre-Christmas brunch featuring an Espresso Martini, Triple Cheese and Onion Strata, Glazed and Toasted Vanilla Cake ‘Brioche’ and an antioxidant Fruit Salad.
Short & Sweet
Nigella enjoys the run-up to Christmas and prepares her Christmas larder in advance.  She takes a trip to Paris to explore the chocolate haven of this famous city and, armed with inspiration, she then demonstrates a few sweet recipes including a chocolate rocky road and her favourite Christmas Pavlova.  Nigella has a series of short cuts and culinary tips that will transform the familiar Sunday rib of beef into a sumptuous Christmas treat with her port and Stilton sauce.  Also on the menu are Thai Beef Salad and Poinsettia Cocktail.
The Unhappy Hour
Although the very idea of canapés seems to scream 1970s, they are always popular with both the host and guests as Christmas entertaining comes underway.  In this episode, Nigella offers some simple guides to getting them right.  The salty combinations of parma ham, creamy goats cheese and figgy wraps provide a befitting start to Nigella’s spicy mini ribs and irresistible crab cakes.  For an all-girls-get-together dinner party, Nigella whips up a cinnamon rubbed pousin with a scented couscous. Saving the day is Nigella’s never-fail hangover cure – a Cuban Chorizo and Black Bean Soup.
Life in the Old Bird Yet?
In Nigella’s mind, most of us would be too hangover to wake up for breakfast and thus Christmas lunch should be the meal to look out for.  In this episode, she spruces up an age-old recipe of making turkey with the Domestic Goddess’s twist. Nigella shares her tips of cooking a turkey that will have your guest go, gobble gobble – one that is superbly spiced and juicily roasted.  To go with it, Nigella adds Pancetta and Chestnut Sprouts, Gingerbread Stuffing, Maple Syrup Parsnips, and finishes off with a vodka-flamed Christmas Pudding.

Willy's Perfect Chocolate Christmas 1
(Photo credit: courtesy of Discovery Travel & Living)

Thanks to Western propaganda, we’re all yearning for a white Christmas and mistletoe and mulled wine (in sunny Kuala Lumpur?), so why not get totally in the mood with WILLIE’S PERFECT CHOCOLATE CHRISTMAS?   If you’ve tuned in to Channel 707 before, you’ll probably have heard of Willie Harcourt-Cooze and his ‘wonky’ chocolate factory in Devon.   Me? I really should stop watching DVDs (has anyone watched True Blood Season 2? yum yum) for some wholesome family-type programmes on television.

In WILLIE’S PERFECT CHOCOLATE CHRISTMAS, the eccentric chocolatier returns to his family home in Devon for a festive foodie extravaganza with his wife Tania and their three children.  Willie will be taking care of the menu for the holiday season, preparing a series of mouth watering chocolate themed recipes, boozy chocolate mince pies, a classic chocolate tart and the perfect party treats for entertaining friends including a quince chocolate cheese and a chocolate and clementine cheesecake.  WILLIE’S PERFECT CHOCOLATE CHRISTMAS premieres on ASTRO Channel 707 on Wednesday, December 23 at 9:00 p.m. (Malaysia time).   (Repeats on Thursday, December 24 at 2300 hrs (11:00 p.m.), Friday, December 25 at 0900 hrs (9:00 a.m.) and 1500 hrs (3:00 p.m.), Saturday, December 26 at 1700 hrs (5:00 p.m.), Sunday, December 27 at 2000 hrs (8:00 p.m.), Monday, December 28 at midnight (12:00 a.m.), Thursday, December 31 at 1500 hrs (3:00 p.m.)).

If you’d like to catch Willie’s Easter series, tune in to Channel 707 on Wednesdays at 9:00 p.m (Malaysia time), starting from December 2 for Raising the Bar: Willie’s Chocolate Revolution.  Repeats are on Mondays at midnight, Tuesdays at 6:00 p.m., Wednesdays at 1:00 p.m., Thursdays at 7:00 a.m. and Sundays at 11:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m.


This Christmas, I racked my brains to come up with an appropriate gift for my friend, Fatboybakes, who loves Nigella.   This is a picture of Nigella, with gorgeous glowing skin that we can only pray we are blessed with when we turn 50.

Nigella's Christmas Kitchen 3
(Photo credit: courtesy of Discovery Travel & Living)

This is my gift to Fatboybakes, a picture of him with gorgeous glowing skin that we can only pray we are blessed with when we turn 50.

(Photo taken by and skillfully edited by Lyrical Lemongrass)

Notice how very much they look alike?

For the Cookbook Giveaway Contest, all you have to do is come up with the wittiest quote for Fatboybakes in the final picture.  Email you answers to lyrical(dot)lemongrass(at)gmail(dot)com by Mondaynoon, December 28, 2009.  Winners will be announced on December 31, 2009.  Multiple entries are permitted.  Easy peasy, right?

And yes, PRIZES!  I have FIVE cookbooks to give away to five witty winners, courtesy of Discovery Travel & Living:

2 x David Rocco’s Dolce Vita
2 x Willie’s Chocolate Factory Cookbook
1 x Kylie Kwong’s My China

Sorry peeps, but this contest is only open to those currently residing in Malaysia.  Yes, even Fatboybakes can participate in this contest since I know he isn’t going to leave the country anytime in the near future.

Merry Christmas, y’all!