Croquembouche Dessert

For the Pastry Puffs:

1 ½ cups water
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
6 large eggs

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Bring 1 1/2 cups water, the butter, sugar and salt to a simmer in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring to melt the butter.
Remove from the heat and stir in the flour with a wooden spoon to make a paste. Return to the heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the paste is shiny and pulls away from the pan, 6 to 7 minutes. Cool slightly.
Transfer the dough to a large pastry bag with a 1/2-inch tip. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper, dabbing a bit of dough under the corners to keep the paper in place. Pipe 1 1/2-inch balls of dough onto the paper (about 48 total).

Cooking with Brad

Smooth the dough peaks with a wet finger. Bake until puffed, 15 to 20 minutes, then lower the temperature to 350 degrees and bake until golden, 15 minutes. Turn off the oven; keep the puffs inside 10 minutes to dry out. Pierce each puff with a dry piping tip; transfer to a rack to cool.

To Assemble:

3 cups sugar
3 tablespoons light corn syrup
Fill half of the puffs with chocolate cream and half with vanilla: Insert the tip of the pastry bag into the hole and squeeze until full. Chill the filled puffs 30 minutes before assembling the tower.

Make the caramel: Mix the sugar, corn syrup and 1 cup water in a saucepan, cover and bring to a boil over high heat; don’t stir. Uncover and boil, swirling the pan, until the syrup turns deep amber, 20 minutes.

Homemade Coconut Crusted Shrimp

Real Life Family


2/3 cup all-purpose flour 1/2 cup cornstarch
1 large egg, beaten
2/3 cup grated fresh coconut
1 cup ice-cold soda water
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 pound large shrimp, peeled, deveined and tail on1 tablespoon finely chopped
fresh cilantro leaves


Real Life Family

Preheat a fryer to 350 degrees F.

In a medium mixing bowl, combine the flour, cornstarch, egg, coconut and soda water. Mix well to make a smooth batter. Season with salt. Season the shrimp with 1 tablespoon of Essence. Holding the tail of the shrimp, dip in the batter, coating completely and shaking off the excess. Fry the shrimp in batches until golden brown, about 4 to 6 minutes. Remove and drain on paper towels.

Asian Dressing

Chef Brad
  • 1/2 tsp minced garlic
  • 1/2 tsp minced ginger
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • Sambal to taste
  • 2 tsp sesame oil
  • 2 tsp soya sauce
  • 1 cup orange juice

Combine and bring to a boil to thicken.

Pumpkin and Peanut Butter Soup

Chef Brad
  • 1  small onion
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 tsp Chinese 5 spice
  • 1 tblsp smooth peanut butter
  • 1 can of coconut milk
  • 1 large can of pumpkin puree
  • 500 ml of Chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp vegetable oil

In the oils sauté your diced onion add your garlic and ginger as well as your Chinese 5 spice, then add your pumpkin puree, peanut butter, and coconut milk and stock bring to a boil, let simmer. Salt and Pepper to taste.

Green Thai Banana Lime Curry

Chef Brad
  • 1 lime leaf
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 tblsp of green Thai curry paste
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1 litre water
  • 2 tblsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1tsp minced ginger
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 1 cup of chopped cilantro
  • 2 tsp of fish sauce
  • To thicken corn starch

Sautee diced onion and lime leaf in the oils, adds your garlic and ginger, then add your green Thai curry paste, coconut milk and water, bring to a boil and let simmer. Add the banana in last


I suppose that my grass roots approach to food came from my beautiful mother. Growing up we always ate well. During the week usually a hearty pot of curry or a stew graced our dinner table almost every protein we ate had bones in it, nothing went to waste and subsequently the flavours were incredible.


Chef Brad