Thursday, December 19, 2013

Morning Tea Ideas - Raspberry, White Chocolate and Coconut slice

Last Saturday TEDxPerth had our strategic thinking and planning workshop day. With two successful big events under our belt, as well as some smaller unplugged events and live broadcasts of TED and TED Global, it was time for the team to get together and figure out what our purpose was and how we see ourselves progressing into the future. I think that for any organization you can talk a lot about what you want to do, but to articulate it into something that is real, meaningful and actionable is not always easy but necessary (complete with flowcharts, graphs and venn diagrams!). The key reason why we volunteer our time to TEDxPerth is to provide a platform for Perth's most creative and innovative individuals such as scientists, intellectuals, entrepreneurs and artists to share their ideas on stage in 18 minutes or less - to challenge views and attitudes, to find ways to improve our lives and show that you can achieve a lot of great things in Perth! I’m on #TeamPerthIsAwesome

I’m also on #TeamEatTheGoodStuff

A workshop is not complete without morning tea so when I found out that it would have probably just been purchased from the supermarket or Miss Mauds, I was like hold that thought! I’m bringing morning tea. I am the food curator for TEDxPerth after all, and if we need sugary treats to power us through the day, I was going to make sure that it would be the good stuff. 

I don’t know about you… but I will judge how good a café is by their sweets display, where I am immediately attracted if I can see that the baked treats have been done in house and everything looks wholesome. Sometimes you see a display full of magnificent looking cakes at a café and they appear to tick the box, but you can also tell that they have been delivered from some commercial cake making factory and eating such cakes can be filled with regret because you know that you can get and deserve better. I’ve made a pact with myself that if I’m going to be stuffing my face with sugar and butter, I want to make it worth it and homemade baked treats are always the best!

Even if this meant that I was baking four different things in 38 degree Perth heat the day before and I decided that it would be a great idea to be working with pastry and meringue to make these Turkish lemon meringue cookies.

It’s basically buttery dough, spread with meringue, rolled up and baked. I knew that it was going to be a bit tricky to pull together as pastry and meringe are delicate things to work with, made worse by the heat where the pastry was getting too soft too quickly making it difficult to roll but in the end I did manage to roll it all together. However, I had to chuck it in the freezer until it hardened enough for me to slice into rounds to bake. I used a recipe from Lemon Pi and the only thing that I had to do differently was freezing the dough after rolling up first before slicing.

Lemon meringue cookies basically taste like a shortbread cookie with meringue inside, and everyone liked how light it was and enjoyed the crumbly cookie interwined with soft and crispy lemon scented meringue.

Chocolate Puddle
 Baked Chocolate Puddle Cookie 

But the biggest hit were these chocolate puddle cookies which have a meringue like exterior that you break away to reveal fudgey insides. It encompasses all the characteristics that I like to have in my cookies – crisp on the outside but soft and chewy inside. Something that delights and mystifies, where everyone commented on the contrasting textures – like how can it be hard outside and soft inside? The answer is science and therefore something that I can’t really explain but follow this recipe from 101Cookbooks and let the chemistry work itself out!

Another thing I baked was these tahini and almond cookies which are really easy to make. It’s one of those recipes where you can just put all the ingredients into a food processor and process the mixture until it forms a dough, roll into small balls, flatten and bake. I used a recipe from David Lebovitz

I like these tahini and almond cookies as they present a different flavour than your usual cookies, but I found that these were the least favoured so tahini (sesame paste) was not to everyone’s liking. Next time I think it will be best to stick to the classic flavours like chocolate :)

The last thing I baked was a café classic – a raspberry, white chocolate and coconut slice. These combination of flavours work like magic together and it’s something that I see offered quite a lot of cafes. Over the years I have tried to work out my own recipe for it, bringing together all the elements I like – a light crisp layer on the top with the texture of a brownie inside where its cake-like but soft and slightly chewy.

Raspberry, white chocolate and coconut slice

(An original recipe by the Blue Apocalypse)


•    250g white chocolate
•    150g butter
•    4 eggs
•    1 ½ cup caster sugar
•    2 teaspoon vanilla extract
•    1 cup almond meal
•    1 cup desiccated coconut
•    2/3 cup plain flour, sifted
•    ½ teaspoon baking powder
•    ½ teaspoon salt
•    1 lemon, zest only
•    ~150g of raspberries (fresh or frozen)


Preheat oven to 170C and line a 8x8inch square baking tin with greaseproof paper.
Add the white chocolate and butter together in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of gently simmering water, stir until combined and smooth. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.

Beat the eggs, vanilla extract and sugar together until smooth. Stir in the white chocolate/butter into the eggs.

Combine the dry ingredients together in a bowl – almond meal, coconut, flour, baking powder, salt and lemon zest. 

Fold the dry mixture into the wet mixture.

Pour the batter into the baking in and scatter raspberries over the top. 

Bake for ~45 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool before slicing.

Dust with icing sugar.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Fridey at the Hydey – Trash Band 1987

This year RTRFM presented Gimme Some Truth, Australia’s first music documentary festival with 10 films over three days from Friday 29 November to Sunday 1 December at Luna Cinemas in Leederville. 

The doco that I was most excited about seeing was Fridey at the Hydey.

 You can watch the short 7 minute version of The Hydey released in 2010, Fridey at the Hydey is the extended 50 minute feature version.

Fridey at the Hydey screened to a sold out audience at Luna Outdoor Cinemas on Sunday night and throughout the doco there was plenty of reactions from the crowd (cheering) as the story of the Hydey and its place within the Perth music scene was celebrated, and the reality of its regrettable demise hit home again (boo to Woolies).   

For those of you that don’t know about the Hydey and what happened to it, here’s the deal - the Hyde Park Hotel or the Hydey as it was affectionately known as by its regulars, was a Perth music institution. A pub that became a local music venue with live music 7 days a week, playing host to anything and everything from punk, pop, rock, metal, indie to reggae and dub ‘n’ ska. Every band in Perth has probably played at the Hydey at some stage and it launched the careers of many of Perth’s finest bands. In 2007, the Hyde Park Hotel was sold to Woolworths by longtime owner Paul Higgins. Higgins explained in the doco that an offer was made and if he had refused to sell, Woolworths would have brought up another place nearby to set up a Dan Murphy’s which would have driven the Hydey out of business as they have their own little bottle-o. After Woolworths acquired the Hydey, original live local music ceased to be. It closed for renovations in 2010 and reopened in 2011, and now it’s just your average run of the mill pub with no soul.  

So things change, and venues will come and go. But there was something really special about the Hydey, evident when you talk to people about it and see how much emotion and nostalgia it brings out for those that experienced the Hydey back in the day. Friendships, bands and the development of the Perth music scene may not have evolved as such without the Hydey there to nurture it, and foster connections and relationships.

I know that I probably sound like one of those people who just wax lyrical about the past like it’s the only thing that matters, but the Hydey was important to me. So I will share why, my story and connection to the Hydey, and you will see why my friends and I vow to never shop at Dan Murphy’s (it’s the largest big-box liquor store in WA).

 Hydey pre-2007

So what made the Hydey unique?


Located on the corner of Bulwer and Fitzgerald street, the Hydey was pretty central and had a big carpark which made it more accessible.

Since the Hydey closed, other centrally located small music venues have popped up like The Bird ) and YaYa’s. Both are located in the heart of Northbridge where parking can be an issue and walking through Northbridge late at night is um interesting to put it nicely…

Plus, the Hydey carpark formed a place for people to take a breather outside between bands, and after gigs finished people lingered on in the carpark…drinking, smoking, conversing, making plans for the rest of the night… The value of bonding in parking lots should not be underestimated, see Heavy Metal Parking Lot.

The Space

The Hydey front bar was small, making it an intimate space where you could play to 10 or 50 people and it didn’t feel empty. The bands played on the floor so there was no stage, no barrier between the band and the audience. It felt like you were playing in someone’s lounge room and for bands starting out, it's the best kind of environment to play in. It was also a special experience watching bands play at the Hydey, as you could get so close that it felt like they were just playing only to you.

Cheap but cheerful

Everything was cheap - the beer, the pool, the carpet, the gigs (usually free!) the décor….it was an old school kind of pub, a bit shabby and rough around the edges with cracks in the wall, the carpets where sticky and looked like they didn’t get cleaned (I fell over on the carpet once and got a nasty rash), the toilets were on par with the public toilets you find at the bus station ….but this kind of all added to its charm as there was just no pretension and I couldn’t imagine it any other way.

Hydey ceiling - fancy disco?

A place for everyone

The Hydey was like unconditional love where any band could get a gig and anyone was also welcome, and in turn the punters loved it for what it was.

But what makes the Hydey particularly special for me? 

Trash Band 1987  

When I was a teenager, I got into music in a big way, it was my refuge and escapism from my strict Asian upbringing. I got into alternative music. I bought a guitar and taught myself how to play it. I started going to gigs – first to big music festivals like the Big Day Out and Rock It, then to see the shows of national and international touring acts.

Then I would discover local music and the Perth music scene, and I would start going out more to local gigs, often on my own but I found that I wasn’t alone. There were also people out there like me who loved music and seeing bands, and we would eventually connect. Perth is small with a handful of venues that serve the local original music scene, so if you like certain bands or go to certain type of gigs be it punk, indie or metal, you end up seeing the same people at them again and again, and this is how I forged a lot of friendships, to the point where I can say that my close group of friends right now are not people I went to high school or uni with, I didn’t work with them either, but we are friends through the local Perth music scene. 

The Hydey played a big part in fostering this through its casual sharehouse like vibe, cheap drinks and free gigs. It’s not a stretch to say that I was pretty much living at the Hydey every weekend for while and from this I befriended Karen and Leonie through our mutual love of local Perth band The Tigers. I would go and see The Tigers every time they played (frequently at the Hydey) and without a doubt I knew that Karen and/or Leonie would be there so it wouldn’t matter if I was going alone. 

Finding common interests and all being the same height, we decided to form a band. 

Trash Band 1987 (we had aliases), clockwise from the top - Betty Lee (Karen), Aurora X (Ai-Ling), Mother Russia (Gemma) and Talula 3000, formerly known as Talula Scholtz (Leonie).

Although the genesis of Trash Band 1987 happened at the Swan Basement in Fremantle on 25 May 2003, where three short chicks decided that night while watching The Tigers play that we would form a band which would change the face of Perth music…it was at the Hydey that Trash Band 1987 made our mark (on the toilet doors), found our fourth member, got our mojo and played our first show.

The Hydey – where bands are born

When the idea for Trash Band 1987 was conceived, we thought – wouldn’t it be funny to hype up a band that didn’t exist? We wanted to be that band that everyone knew about but didn’t play any shows. 

How? Toilet propaganda. 

First Trash Band 1987 graffiti at the Hydey “Trash Band 1987 kicks someones ass not sure who's ass”.

More Trash Band 1987 graffiti at the Hydey “JOAN JETT GAVE HER RESPECT TO TRASH BAND ’87…HAVE YOU?” 

Comment by someone else “Bin day is Monday night?”.

You know you’ve made it when people start dissing on you – graffiti by non-trashers, trashing the trashers.

More Trash Band 1987 graffiti around town at the Rosemount “TRASH BAND RESPECT YO MAMA!” and someone else wrote under TRASH BAND 1987 - “are gonna have my babies” !!

There was over two months of toilet door graffiti before we got together for our first jam which happened because Karen acquired a tattered, duct taped drum kit from a friend who was moving to Melbourne, and suddenly we realized that we had the complete array of instruments required to kick out the jams and did so one Sunday afternoon at Leonie’s parents garage in Karringup.

Trash Garage

Excerpt from my livejournal 3 August 2003…

“Fuck! I can't believe it actually finally happened but me and red_riven bought all our equipment to joanjett0farc house today and we had our first 'Trash Band' jam and rocked out her garage with her organ beating out kooky tunes, a black and white tv making static noises and Jerry Seinfeld monologues in the background. It was mad and we had no idea what we were doing or how to make our instruments sound together. I didn't realise how hard it is to play with other people, so used to just playing on my own. Towards the end we got better, the sounds we were making started to come together. After months and months of being just talk, talk....TRASH is finally happening for real. I'll have to practice a lot on my guitar and try to come up with some cool riffs.”

It was through toilet door scribblings that led to Gemma joining the band. One night at the Hydey during general chit chat between bands playing, Gemma mentioned Trash Band 1987 in the vein of “who the fuck hell are they?”… “I see them everywhere on toilet doors”…the answer was “that’s us”. Then three trashers became four.

More Trash Band 1987 Hydey graffiti – our motto "BANDS! TUNES! DRUGS! ACTION!"

On the Hydey toilet! TRASH BAND 1987!
The Hydey – where you get your mojo

Talk Graffiti is cheap. It would only be a matter of time before we got our shit together. Turning point would happen at the Hydey one night. 

Excerpt from my livejournal 1 September 2003…

“Saturday night at the Hydey us Trashers were talking to Chris Cobolis (from The Tigers) and somehow it slipped out that we were in a band and he was asking us what we play? what we sound like? and we told him and he said we sound cool and we are going to be his new favourite band and next time the Tigers play he's totally gonna put Trash Band 1987 for support. We came to the conclusion though that he was probably drunk and wake up the next morning thinking........Trash what? and not remember our conversation........... But fuck it got us so motivated to jam Sunday arvo and we fully got our shit together, we have like 3 and a half songs. I recorded some of our jam on my dictaphone and it sounds really dodgy, sounds kind of fuzzy but you can still sort of make out the songs. Love the little ambient melody we created for 'Lick My Love Pump'.........I was humming Love Pump in my head all day.”

The Hydey – where everyone gets their first gig

About six months after we first got together, Trash Band 1987 played our inaugural gig at the Hydey on 16 November 2003 with The Tigers, Ten Speed Racer and Maple. 

 This is a photo of Trash Band 1987 playing our first gig!

Trash Band 1987 - Hydey Memories

The Hydey green room where Leonie models TB87 underwear merch
DIY band merchandise
Besides underwear, we also had tshirts
Trash Band 1987 bar flies
We played many shows over our existence (frequently at the Hydey), bombarding audiences with knickers, explicit spoken word, and both intentional and unintentional distortion 
A Friday at the Hydey - Sabretooth Tigers, Trash Band 1987, 
the Amputee Pornstars, crazy steve!

Photos of Hydey gig posters taken from my scrapbook
The Hydey – where dreams are made

You can’t say that you have being in a band until you have recorded and release something right? This is the aim right? Otherwise what have you got to show for it? 

Well our Trash Band 1987 line of underwear didn’t really take off…

Left - Freud can suck my cock.... Right - Stalin

Trash Band 1987 had our first and only CD launch at the Hydey – putting out a 3 inch CD single for the track “At Midnight I Will Take Your Soul” on 12 August 2005, recorded by our friend Dr Greg in his loungeroom. 

I made 50 CDs and we sold about 30 on the night – various covers and TB87 badges!

Packed out Hydey front bar for Trash Band 1987 CD launch - 12 August 2005

Disclaimer: Listen at your own risk!

Trash Band 1987 - At Midnight I Will Take Your Soul

So while venues will come and go, what kind of impact will they have?

One thing that’s certain for me is that the Hydey was important to my experience of the local Perth music scene and the formation of Trash Band 1987. The Hydey was a place which allowed a little all-girl band to emerge from the garage in Perth, we were not music to everyone’s ears but that didn’t matter.

My story is probably just one of many that the Hydey enabled of friendship, musical discovery and rock’n’roll. This is something that the current Hyde Park Hotel will never have and this for me is the saddest part about the closure of the ‘Hydey”.

Do you have a Hydey story to share?  

R.I.P. Trash Band 1987, inflicting noise on the Perth music scene from 2003-2006.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Eat Drink Blog 4 Sponsorship

I do not accept PR or sponsored posts on my blog. This position is clearly stated on the homepage of my blog via a disclaimer and known by anyone who knows me. 

But I spent the past year as the Chair of the fourth national Australian Food and Drinks Bloggers conference, Eat Drink Blog, where the majority of my time was spent trying to get as much sponsorship as possible.

Is it strange to be asking for sponsorship for a conference if I don’t accept any sponsorship on my blog?

No, because I see a difference between doing sponsored blog posts and obtaining sponsorship to enable an event to be run. The context in which the sponsorship occurs and the outcomes that the sponsorship achieves is different. 

Firstly, what I chose to do on my blog is my personal choice and Eat Drink Blog is not about me or how I approach blogging. When I became the Chair of Eat Drink Blog 4, I took on the responsibility to organize a conference for Australian food and drink bloggers, a role that had been entrusted with me by the previous committee to carry on the success and legacy of Eat Drink Blog with the support of the Perth food blogging community (note: there is a WA food blogging google group where much discussion occurred during the process of submitting our expression of interest to host Eat Drink Blog 4).

Eat Drink Blog was a project that I worked on for the past year and I did whatever I needed to do in order make it happen in Perth because it was my job to do so and I’m a professional like that. 

Eat Drink Blog is a community focused, non-profit event organized by a volunteer committee of local bloggers from the host state. The conference is free for delegates to attend to encourage maximum accessibility but delegates are responsible for their own flights and accommodation. 

So organizing Eat Drink Blog is like organizing a wedding but with no budget. 

It was surprising for me to find out that Eat Drink Blog is one of the very few blogging conferences in the world that is free, most other conferences charge a hundred or more in registration fees.

The only way that Eat Drink Blog can happen is if (a) we charge an attendance fee or (b) it is supported by sponsorship. The Perth committee decided to keep in line with how the previous three conferences have been run and continue making it free to attend, and worked on securing sponsorship in the form of funds or in-kind contributions to cover the numerous expenses (venue, AV, staging, catering, printing etc.) required to run a conference.

I believe that sponsorship has a valuable role to play in facilitating events, as it would not be possible for them to happen without the contribution of sponsors to share the costs in order to make the event accessible to everyone, this goes for the large scale for-profit events like Gourmet Escape to street festivals like the Beaufort Street Festival and not-for-profit events run by volunteer organizations like TEDxPerth.

Disclaimer: I am on the TEDxPerth committee as a partnership manager/food curator where I organize the catering and after events, as well as help with securing partnerships (sponsors) to support our independently organized TEDxPerth events.

But sponsorship is also a two-way return of benefits, where a sponsor’s support of an event provides them with negotiated benefits. At a very basic level, all sponsors were given the standard sponsorship benefits you would expect for any type of conference which included their logo on the website/program booklet, signage, verbal acknowledgement, mentions on the Eat Drink Blog social media accounts for relevant announcements and an item in the conference bag. In addition, sponsors were clearly informed that bloggers may or may not choose to share on social media and/or write on their blogs about their experiences. Exposure was never guaranteed but could be assumed to be a likely occurence when you have 80 bloggers in the room with cameras clicking away. But the extent of that exposure and what form it takes is not certain. Every delegate comes away from Eat Drink Blog and shares what they have learnt from it and their experiences in their own way, evident by the variety of blog posts that have been linked on the Eat Drink Blog media page where amongst the pretty pictures there is also a lot of robust discussions and debates.

Understanding this situation and the attractiveness that an event like Eat Drink Blog poses for sponsors, I didn’t take any decisions on sponsorship lightly. All sponsorships were carefully considered in terms of its fit with the kind of Eat Drink Blog conference we wanted to put on and what the sponsors wishes were, and above all the independence and integrity of Eat Drink Blog was the guiding point on all decisions made. This is reflected in the list of sponsors that we got on board this year, where the Perth committee hand-picked and directly approached the majority of the sponsors which comprised of a lot of local businesses that we liked and wanted to have involved with our Eat Drink Blog.

Although it probably wasn’t an initial aim, as Eat Drink Blog moves from state to state, it has also become an opportunity for the host state to share a little bit of its local food and drink culture to give it a sense of place. After all, it is a food bloggers conference and we all know what food bloggers like to do. In this way, I see sponsors more as ‘partners’ of the conference, where their involvement and support can be integrated to harmoniously fit into the conference. For example, putting on a full day conference means that catering is required but rather than going down the route that you would experience at most conferences – filtered coffee, mass produced danishes and sandwiches etc. the fact that Eat Drink Blog is a food blogging conference presents the opportunity to engage local food businesses to be involved in providing food and drinks. 

From the start we wanted to incorporate a unique WA experience to Eat Drink Blog, sharing a little about what makes Perth great with delegates from award winning bakeries, artisan home bakers, street food stalls, food trucks, locally roasted coffee to family fun businesses, and local craft beer and cider…in the end isn’t this what all us bloggers do? We like to share…

We chose sponsors primarily based on what we wanted to share with delegates rather than what each sponsor could give, and we approached small and local businesses first, before looking for bigger/national businesses. We rejected as many sponsors as we accepted and the terms of engagement were carefully negotiated.

I admit that there may have been some conflict of interests where we asked businesses to sponsor who we knew but it’s something that’s hard to avoid in Perth (it’s small) and when you are seeking funds or in-kind services it is always easier to ask someone that you know. Obtaining sponsorship is hard and a lot of work. The reality is, like getting a job, it’s easier if you already know someone etc. But we only asked those that we thought would be good for Eat Drink Blog.

I admit to being completely bias in choosing who to approach, sorry I didn’t ask for sponsorship from Meat & Livestock Australia this year or Woolies or Coles “the big two” as I’m sure that we could have got a shitload more stuff. I sought the sponsorship for Eat Drink Blog that was needed and nothing more, from people that I felt comfortable working with. 

Sponsorships involve managing relationships and negotiating terms to achieve some sort of balance for the sponsor and the event. It’s hard to not become personally involved with the people you deal with and I only have good things to say about all the sponsors for Eat Drink Blog 4 because I chose to work with them.

Because I realize what’s involved with sponsorships, I choose to keep my blog free from it. It’s hard to be completely objective and hey I’m just human and nice, and maybe I’m just taking the easy way out by saying no to all PR and sponsored posts on my blog so that I don’t find myself in a grey area when I have to think twice about what I post. Or maybe I can’t get rid of my damn punk rock ethos. I choose to keep my blog an independent creative outlet, where the content is original and free from any influences but my own (ie: Tool).

Outside of my blog I like being a part of organizing events which may require sponsorships. I like the challenge of figuring out how things can work together and if the end goal of that sponsorship means that I’m creating something of value for the community – whether it be bringing the blogging community together with Eat Drink Blog or to provide a forum for amazing individuals to share their ideas with TEDxPerth then I am happy to be a part of it.

How to I reconcile my personal view on not doing sponsored blog posts and my role as the Chair of Eat Drink Blog 4?

Because I am clear on what I do and what I do for others. I am much harder on myself and kinder to others. I give more than I like to take. I am way too serious for my own good.

Given the role of organizing Eat Drink Blog which I put my hand up for, unaware of what it would involve (a lot of time, stress, sleep deprivation and unhealthy eating habits), I was going to fucking to do and do it well, and I’m gonna own it.

Being the Chair of Eat Drink Blog 4 also allowed me to put my own mark on Eat Drink Blog, to present a vision of the kind of conference that I would be proud of and wanted to be a part of. Anyone on the WA food bloggers google group would recall all the discussions we had at the beginning of the year on what Eat Drink Blog could have potentially being. But I wanted to keep Eat Drink Blog grounded, to be a bit rough around the edges and to have a community, grassroots feel. I think people who have attended past conferences got what we did and can see that we brought something different to the table, and although there were many pathways Eat Drink Blog 4 could have taken, I couldn’t imagine doing it any other way, even though it ended up being the hard and more work way.

Lastly, I want to say that all speakers at Eat Drink Blog were not paid or compensated for any travel or accommodation costs except for Adam Roberts (Amateur Gourmet) who was our special international guest and was brought over by Tourism WA. The sponsors made Eat Drink Blog possible but the speakers made Eat Drink Blog what it was. I didn't just spend the past year organising a party for you all. The food and drinks were nice, but I what I really wanted was for everyone to come away learning something. 

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Sonic Youth Tuna Tacos

From my archives, scans of some Sonic Youth photos I took when I saw them play live for the first time in 2004 at Metropolis Fremantle!Sonic Youth live 21.7.2004, Metropolis Fremantle
Kim and Thurston

I’m a huge Sonic Youth fan and tacos, who doesn't like tacos? 

When my friend Riche recently sent me a link he had come across of a tuna taco recipe that Sonic Youth shared in a 1996 “Eat This” column in Sassy magazine, I couldn't wait to make it.

It’s simple and Kim Gordon (bassit) lived on these tacos when she was a poor struggling art student in Los Angeles.

 Lee Ranaldo and Jim O'Rourke

Sonic Youth are know for using alternative tunings for their guitars as early on in their career they could only afford cheap guitars, and cheap guitars sound…cheap. But tune it differently or use objects like drum sticks and screwdrivers to alter its timbre (see Lee Ranaldo doing his thing in pic above!) and new unique sounds can be created. Sonic Youth are praised for having "redefined what rock guitar could do” and have had a pivotal influence on the alternative rock and indie rock movements with their music which I will attempt to describe as adventurous, unconventional and playful noise rock guitar explosions! 

The basis of a taco is cheap, but you can fill them with whatever you want. You can make them into something a little bit fancy - spending hours slow cooking pork, pickling and making various condiments, or just keep it low key and simple - leftover meat, lettuce, salsa, sour cream, and top it with coriander/spring onion.

You don’t need expensive guitars to make amazing music and you don’t need expensive ingredients to make great tasting tacos.

Tacos have had a resurgence in recent years, I think this can be partly attributed to the rise of food trucks where tacos are commonly served as they are the perfect street, grab and go kind of food.

Many consider Sonic Youth to be ‘godfathers of alternative rock’ and the ‘godfather of food trucks’ is Roy Choi with his Kogi Korean BBQ taco trucks. Since making his debut in 2008, Roy Choi has kicked off a food truck revolution in Los Angeles which has spread to New York, Portland and other US cities. But a food truck is only as good as the food served, and the humble taco has been elevated to a cult status with Roy Choi’s tacos challenging the barriers of what a taco can be with its fusion of Korean and Mexican. 

Hey, I’ve even delved into a little Mexican and Vietnamese fusion myself by making Vietnamese tacos, because why not?

Sonic Youth, and Roy Choi’s tacos have had a huge impact on their respective industries. I love how in their own ways, they have set themselves apart by being different and pushing new boundaries, rising from the underground to achieve commercial success. 

I don’t eat a lot of tacos, maybe because I had written them off a bit, other things were getting more of my attention. But after making Sonic Youth’s tuna tacos I was reminded of how great tacos simply are and I need to eat more of them in my life and experiment with different fillings. Then I listened to some Sonic Youth and I remembered how amazing they were and I need to play them more often too….

Here’s Sonic Youth’s tuna taco recipe with a few slight adjustments, I couldn’t find watercress at the shops so I used snow pea sprouts instead. Also added a little salt and pepper to the filling. 

•    1 can of tuna in springwater (425g)
•    1 glob mayo
•    1 green onion, finely diced
•    1/2 lemon squeezed
•    1 or 2 small green chillies, finely chopped
•    salt and pepper
•    4 tortillas
•    butter
•    snow pea sprouts

 snow pea sprouts


Mix tuna, mayo, lemon, onion and chillies in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Sprinkle water on tortilla, then heat one at a time on open low flame in a frying pan, 15 to 30 seconds on each side until warmed through and starts to colour. Remove the tortilla from the pan while it’s still soft and smear with butter. 

                                                      Tip: add lots of butter!
Put tuna mixture in the middle of the tortilla, top with snow pea sprouts.

                                                         Enjoy \m/

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