Jan O'Connell
  • Sky I was working on an ad campaign for a client's new building, Sky Plaza. So I consulted an online thesaurus looking for "words associated with sky". The words on the screen sang to me. Some line breaks and a little punctuation turned them into a poem. No responses 14/04/2017
  • High wire Popular history has it that the underwired bra was, in fact, invented by Howard Hughes to prop up the truly remarkable breasts of Hollywood legend Jane Russell. But I've had a love/hate relationship with these frustrating pieces or ironmongery. No responses 14/04/2017
  • Easy to get a lawn with Along the roadside as you approach Bungendore is a series of signs promoting the product of one of the town’s major industries. (Perhaps its only major industry.) Canturf. No responses 14/04/2017
  • Buy my book Me and My Big Mouth is a personal account of how Australian food has changed in the baby-boomers’ lifetime. It’s the story of a generation that can remember life before pizza – a generation that has seen the demise of the local grocer and, decades later, the resurrection of the small local deli. No responses 12/02/2017
  • Salt from the earth A short drive from Dimboola towards Adelaide takes you to the Pink Lake, where salt harvesting started in the 1860s. We took a tour, as part of the Dimboola Food Festival. No responses 23/08/2016
  • Truffle Kerfuffle – or Truffle Oil Kerfuffle? It’s not snobbery. Truly it isn’t. It’s just that truffle oil doesn’t taste like truffles. Or rather, it has one note that resembles the truffle flavour in a very unsubtle, strident way. In fact, it’s a chemical – a chemical called 2,4-dithiapentane – and it’s made in a laboratory, No responses 16/06/2016
  • A blast from the past The name Raytheon is one you see every time you hop off a flight at Canberra airport. They make weapons. Very big weapons. But they also invented the microwave, which was followed in due course by some very earnest microwave cook books. No responses 15/06/2016
  • Where are you from again? Pity the Brisbanite who moved to Melbourne and ordered “scallops” at the local fish and chip shop. Expecting slices of potato dipped in batter and deep fried, he was astonished when he received shellfish. It's one of many Australian food regionalisms. No responses 26/05/2016
  • The Easter Feaster In Europe, Easter coincides with the arrival of spring, so Easter dishes typically feature spring vegetables. Here, it’s autumn. Still, we persist in alternating Greek and Italian Easter dishes, just because we can. No responses 26/04/2016
  • The world’s best restaurants Elite Traveler magazine has named three Sydney restaurants among their 100 Top Restaurants of the World. Their list of the world's best restaurants is decided by a reader poll and in 2016 has put Sydney among the top dining destinations in the world No responses 20/04/2016
  • The Truffle Cookbook – Rodney Dunn. The Truffle Cookbook starts with a quick education in truffles – what they are, how they’re grown and harvested and how to buy them. And there are dishes here that will satisfy accomplished cooks and sophisticated palates – chicken broth with marrow and truffle dumplings, for example. No responses 15/04/2016
  • Summer of ’62 The menu for New Year’s Eve 1962 at the Rex Hotel offered Oysters Naturelle or Fruit Cocktail, Sole Bonne Femme, half a Spring Roast Chicken with vegetables in season, followed by Tropical Fruit Salad and Ice Cream. No responses 11/04/2016