Tuesday, 12 July 2016

Cooking With Celebrity Chef Karen Martini, A Recipe Share and Win a Karen Martini Cook Book!

Very recently, we were lucky enough to be invited to attend an intimate cooking workshop with celebrity chef, mum of two and Lengendairy's newest ambassador, Karen Martini. The event was hosted right here in Melbourne at The Urban Kitchen. As huge fans of Karen, this was something we were exceptionally keen on being a part of.

On the day, Karen, as ambassador for Legendairy, was brimming with an obvious and infectious enthusiasm for dairy foods and in particular, milk. There's so much talk in the media these days, about the growing obesity epidemic, unhealthy diets overall, and the wrong sorts of snacks and beverage choices available on the market for children and teens. As Legendairy profess, it's time to rediscover milk in its own right, as a wholesome food that is rich in essential fats and vitamins.

And those fats in milk - they're actually good fats! #AmazingMilk

The Dairy Kitchen's Amanda Menegazzo and celebrity chef, Karen Martini

On arrival, our group (including myself and nine year old son Ruben - my cooking buddy), were greeted by a very bubbly Karen and team. Our cooking aprons were distributed, and Karen's own delicious and healthy milkshakes were shared to get us prepped for a morning of exciting foodie fun.

It's just got to be said straight-up that Karen is such a delightful person to be around! She is so personable, approachable and every bit as lovely as she appears on television. Her warmth and welcoming nature were as much of a treat as the delicious milk-based foods she prepared for us throughout the morning.

To begin, Karen gave a wonderful talk about the importance of macronutrients in the diet. These are your carbohydrates, proteins and fats. Quite naturally, milk embodies all of these essentials, making it somewhat of a super-food. Being such a versatile product, we were in for several culinary treats, all cooked on the spot for us by Karen herself. Lucky? Yes!

First up, we were given an example of a kitchen staple - a b├ęchamel sauce, which was whipped together expertly by Karen while fielding our questions. Following this (and a tasty sampling), Karen proceeded to make a batch of homemade scones for us, which were filled with dairy goodness.

Absolutely amazing scones!

Hot cakes were next on the agenda, enriched with ricotta. Karen's recipe for pancakes is a particularly fabulous one (as you would expect) and loaded with calcium and protein. Her light and fluffy pancakes were just as quick and simple to prepare as the standard fare. Here's the recipe to try it yourself, shared here with thanks to Karen Martini, Legendairy Ambassador.

Karen Martini's Ricotta Hotcakes
Serves 2-4 (6-8 hotcakes).

180g plain flour
2 tablespoons of caster sugar
2 teaspoons of baking powder
375ml milk
150g ricotta
2 extra large eggs
3 tablespoons of melted butter.

Sift the dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl.
Add the milk, ricotta, eggs and melted butter into another bowl and combine.
Add the milk mix to the dry mix and combine until you have a batter. There may be lumps from the ricotta, but ensure that the flour is incorporated.

Heat a heavy-based frying pan over medium heat and add a knob of butter. Once melted, add about half a cup of batter and cook for around two minutes until it starts to bubble on top. (Like a crumpet in texture.)

Once the hotcake is almost cooked, flip it and cook for just 30 seconds on the other side. Set aside and repeat for the remaining batter. Cook more than one hotcake at a time if your pan can accommodate.

Karen strikes a bonus pose!

Ricotta hot cakes can be served with either sweet or savoury garnishes. Karen used smoked salmon and an extra serving of ricotta to top-off hers.

Then it was our turn to cook! The Legendairy team had us set-up in an MKR style bake-off. On the menu - Karen's hot cake recipe, the results of which would be judged by Karen herself!

Oh the nerves guys! I can now understand all the tension on those television cooking shows, where the contestants are all hopeless and jittery as they make stupid mistakes in the kitchen! (Nervous laugh - that was me this time!) My son? Well, he just took it all in his stride.

And the results are in... While we didn't win the pancake competition (despite these hot cakes looking very appealing to me at least, right now!), we did walk away with the social media prize - Karen Martini's latest hardbound cook book New Kitchen. I was thrilled! (Squee!) I am in love my new cook book. (Thank you Karen. xx)

Do check out Karen's website for some more fantastic recipes. (You can also purchase her cook books.)

Finally, after all that hard work, (minus the cleaning-up - that was taken care of for us), we sat down to a delicious lunch prepared by Karen and the Legendairy team. There was a superb lasagne and salads which were both beautiful and crunchy-fresh.

A huge thank you goes out to Karen, Legendairy and The Urban Kitchen for hosting this vibrant and entertaining event. We all walked away with such great memories and some wonderful signed cook books too, to help us continue the cooking journey at home.

You can learn more about Legendairy and The Dairy Kitchen here, plus there are fabulous recipes on their website as well.

Win one of five Karen Martini 'Feasting'
Cook Books valued at RRP $31 each!
Total prize pool: $155

To Enter

Please complete the entry form below with your details.
Please note: you must leave a comment along with your name within your comment box
in order to enter this giveaway. This is a game of skill.
Entries without comments and names will be disqualified.
Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you to Karen Martini, Legendairy and The Urban Kitchen
for a highly memorable day.

Linking up for IBOT


  1. I'm also a big fan of Karen Martini and live by the 3C diet (cheese, chocolate and chips) so this book would make a huge difference in my kitchen

  2. My daughter loves cooking and loves watching all the cooking shows on TV. She'd love this book, and I'd love eating the results of her Karen Martini inspired cooking!

  3. I love watching Karen on the telly - her recipes are fab! What a wonderful day out and I've eaten a lot of pancakes and Reuben's look pretty prize winning to me!

  4. My daughter and I love cooking up a storm in the kitchen! This would be the perfect book for us to experiment some yummy recipes together

  5. I love Karen, her recipes are really good and recently she helped with our School's CookBook - Our Community Table https://www.facebook.com/BWPS-Cookbook-700868203283279/

  6. What a fantastic day you had. I love Karen Martini's recipes and those hotcakes look the business. I must check out her book.

  7. I'd love a copy of Karen Martini's "Feasting" cookbook. I love Karen's recipes - they are always easy to follow, full of nutritious ingredients and most importantly, achievable. I'm also quite partial to feasting! Love the look of those Ricotta Pancakes, I think I'll be feasting on some of those very soon! Shannon Wotton

  8. I need Karen's help, for example when I try to make crispy calamari, instead of being crispy it's more like a chewy tyre, even the cat won't eat it.

  9. I just like accumulating cook books! I do like Karen Martinis style of cooking and would love to own one of her cookbooks (usually I borrow from the library). Hopefully I will find something in there my kids will actually eat!

  10. Winter is the time when we cook up and storm and fill the house with amazing scents from our creations

  11. The recipes sound delicious and easy to make with the added advantage of being so good for one!

  12. I love looking at her photos and being inspired to cook something up!

  13. I love to cook and would love to try some of her recipes! She is a great cook!

  14. I love Karen Martini - I'll be trying out those pancakes. It looks like you had an awesome day, what a great experience for your little boy!

  15. What a fabulous even and great bonding experience for you and your son. Those meals look delicious!!

  16. You guys were so lucky getting to cook with Karen! Also those scones look amazing, I'm so hungry now. #teamIBOT

  17. Looks like a lovely event. Gorgeous food pics.

  18. Thanks a lot for sharing this with the vast majority of us you truly really really really know what you are discussing! Bookmarked. Best Dehumidifier

  19. Sounds like a great event, I love days out like that. The pancakes look delicious! Kirsty www.hijackedbytwins.com x #TastyTuesdays

  20. Because of Karen's wonderful recipes, my PVR's full of Better Homes episodes. With her gorgeous cookbook, much to my family's relief, I can start deleting.

  21. I need all the help I can get in the kitchen. I'm also hosting a dinner party soon and this book would certainly provide all the inspiration I need.

  22. I have followed Karens career since Mr Wolf in stkilda 2004. Would love to add her cookbook to my collection, love her food! ­čśŐKrystal Delanty

  23. I have followed Karens career since Mr Wolf in stkilda 2004. Would love to add her cookbook to my collection, love her food! ­čśŐKrystal Delanty

  24. I've not heard of Karen, but then again, I'm a non-foodie. But yum! Looks divine .... and so much fun.

  25. Those pancakes look fab. I want it for the pancakes...mmmm, pancakes....

  26. I actually think that I am a little addicted to Better Homes and Gardens. This would have been an awesome experience cooking with Karen. I would love to win her cook book as I am also addicted to cook books {and if I win one then the husband won't be so up in my grill about how many I buy}.

  27. to make and bake as good as the food she makes on better homes and gardens, as my son tells me - her cooking is made for eating mines made to be remade

  28. How wonderful was this! Super hungry now!

  29. This looks like such a fun day! And it's great that you got to spend if with your son! :)

  30. I fall into a routine of cooking the same meals but with Karen's collection of recipes I can 'mix' it up.....out with the old in with the new!

  31. I've really enjoyed watching Karen on better Homes and Gardens over the years, so I know her recipes are something myself and my family would enjoy.
    Sarah ellwood

  32. When my kids say "what's for dinner mum" (and that's me, Annette Charlton), I'll have a few extra ideas up my sleeve if I win this cook book. Thanks for the opportunity to enter.
    What an experience you have captured with your son so wonderfully!

  33. What a great adventure!
    Do ricotta pancakes taste cheesy? Or just like regular pan cakes.

  34. Oh wow those hotcakes! I would love a copy of Karen's book - I have been making her eggplant soup for guests for ages and would love to get my hands on more of her fab recipes. great post! jayne

  35. Any cooking event is a winner in my books! Love learning new cooking tips and it looks like Karen had plenty! Those pancakes look awesome!

  36. Who wouldn't love Feasting, because Feasting is fun! With the fabulous Ms Martini at the reigns, the feast would be done. - Karin O'Grady

  37. Great post - so important to involve children in cooking from an early age and to teach them to appreciate simple and healthy food. And that lunch looks amazing!

  38. I've really enjoyed watching Karen on better Homes and Gardens over the years, so I know her recipes are something myself and my family would enjoy.

  39. I'm always after yummy family recipes and Aussie Karen doesn't disappoint.

  40. I'm such a good cook,
    even the fire alarm agrees,
    to make a decent meal,
    Karen Martini's cookbook is what I need!
    Mikaela Cowan

  41. id love a copy so I can cook with my grand son

  42. Cook books are my weakness this one sounds devine
    With this cook book Karen Martini could make a better home kitchen experience mine.

  43. They have been made use of for many years in kitchens all over the world for a preferred cooking vessel. Moreover , Dutch ovens are often popularly utilized as camping gear for cooking food. Dutch Oven Cookware

  44. I've really enjoyed watching Karen on better Homes and Gardens over the years, so I know her recipes are something myself and my family would enjoy.
    Daniel Ballerini


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