We are thrilled to partner with the amazing Melisainoz.
Being a traveller (I lived in India and South Africa in my 20's whilst working for the Foreign Service) I've always loved exploring the food of the country I am visiting. So, I guess you could call me a foodie, long before there was even such a term.
The cooking side of things was never overly interesting me to when I was younger - raising three kids in a blended family certainly wasn't easy, and cooking was just a necessary chore to keep everyone watered and fed. Back in those days, it was a bit of a rotation of about 10 dinners that I could bang out in 30 minutes after a long day at the office - nutritious, filling but not exactly exciting. Then the cooking shows came along - Masterchef, MKR - and I started getting a tad more interested (mostly in "plating up" so that my standard dinners at least looked a little more inspiring).
I was very lucky to get to retire early at 51, and with more time on my hands, I started getting more creative in the kitchen. Then we moved from Brisbane to Melbourne in 2019. We enjoyed a year of exploring our new city - certainly the culinary side - and then the dreaded lockdowns started. Hubby is an essential worker, so he got to head off to work every day, but I was pretty much stuck at home apart from my allowed hours' exercise. And all our lovely foodie adventures came to a crashing halt.
It was time to get inventive and along came "Vue du Mel" (as I now call my kitchen). It started out as a 2-course menu on a Saturday night, quickly became three, then four courses, and started including a cocktail of the week. I loved it - I would pick a country (Italy, France, India, Greece, etc) and start scouring the internet (and sometimes my cookbooks) for recipes. It would be off to the markets on Saturday morning to get the ingredients (nothing beats fresh), grab some breakfast and then home to cook.
And I discovered a true love of cooking - and that I was also actually very good at it (well other than desserts, I've given up there - I am simply not a baker and my desserts are never all that great - now I just know where to source really good desserts). I decided I was going to cook most things from scratch - and have become adept at flatbreads now (naan, pita, tortilla) that I'm not sure I will ever buy that ready-made again. We would turn it into a date night and dress up for our Saturday feasts and I would document it on my insta account
. Soon I had people waiting each week to see what I would come up with next. Occasionally we would have a Guest Chef in (the hubby) and it was just really good fun. It was also something for me to look forward to each week in our seemingly never-ending lockdowns.
Often I was finishing off dishes that needed last-minute preps, so an apron was a necessity. And if you're going to go to so much trouble, then goodness me, look the part. With a return to the "new normal", it's not a weekly event anymore, but I still do a four-course dinner every few weeks. We moved to a new apartment on the 30th floor, so I now call my kitchen "Vue du Mel on 30". And I have a lot of friends hoping for an invite - I'm slowly getting there.
So if there is one silver lining from the past two years, it is definitely discovering my love of cooking, improving my cooking skills beyond my expectation and truly enjoying being in the kitchen.
So from her stunning high rise apartment in Melbourne overlooking the Yarra River she continues to whip up a foodie storm, whilst promoting fashion for mature, fun women!
Together with Mel we are honoured to offer free personalisation on any plain linen or organic cotton apron you purchase until the 15th of May - Simply purchase a plain linen or organic cotton apron here and select personalization. On checkout use the code MELAPRON and you will receive your personalization absolutely free! Discount shows on the Checkout page. This is a great saving of $15.00 and just in time for Mother's Day.
Mel is pictured here in Maggie Beer's kitchen on a recent visit wearing her stunning linen apron (you can see the personalization).
Stay tuned for more but make sure you grab this offer while you can here