LATE NOTE: Honouring Her Majesty, the Queen. 1926 – 2022

I am writing this late on Thursday night London time. My newsletter was ready to go out, but there are more significant things happening.

Throughout the afternoon in London on Thursday, we heard updates about the Queen’s declining health. When her family rapidly gathered at her bedside in Scotland, we knew it was serious and then we heard she had died in the early evening news.  It was a shock to hear reference to “the King” but of course, “The Queen is Dead, Long Live the King”. Yet somehow it seemed strange and brought the reality home. An incredible woman, the most travelled monarch on earth and an extraordinarily astute woman with quiet dignity and great strength. While I think it is high time Australia became a republic, it does not diminish my respect for this woman nor the global role she has played. What a life of service she has given – from someone who never thought she would be in line for the throne. Yet she made it her own. And this photo is how I choose to remember her, as a wise and older woman rather than the young woman who came to the throne. There are some things which only age and experience bring. Let’s honour her age and wisdom, her service and her legacy.

London Update

Happily back, ready to shop at the Marylebone Sunday Farmers’ Market

Greetings from warm, sunny London,

Well, here I am in London after a pleasant, uneventful flight. What a relief. It did take an hour for my luggage to come on the carousel at Heathrow, which was very busy, but I was reassured that my electronic luggage tag showed me it was 200 metres from me for most of that time. I arrived first thing last Friday so then got the incredibly efficient Paddington Express, (15 minutes from Heathrow) to Paddington and a cab for 5 minutes and I was in my London home.

Lovely weather and warm friendships have welcomed me, making it a little less strange without John. Nearby Regent’s Park is in the last full flush of summer, glorious as ever, with the added bonus of free concerts and also the open-air theatre. I hope to get to both.

London itself is busy. Expensive, with things costing in pounds what we pay in dollars in Australia. However, there is a buzz in the air and no one talks about Covid, nor is it in the news. People seem to have moved on, though I am alarmed that I am one of the very few who wear masks on the tube. And also to see so many people smoking and vaping in the street. More on London below.

Tomorrow I am off to Greece, a country very close to John’s heart with his love of Archeology and Ancient History. And of course, where we filmed Lyndey & Blair’s Taste of Greece, so special all round. We made several trips there and will remember John and Blair there. Nine of us all together.

Therefore I may not get a newsletter out next week, or perhaps a short one but  you can keep up-to-date with me on Facebook and Instagram or email me with any requests or comments. 

Please eat and drink well, travel with your tastebuds if not in person, and be happy and healthy – Lyndey x

Wonderful Regent’s Park

Recipes of the week



I had to try this before I left home and it is a winner! I have some tips there to follow even if you don’t have an air fryer.

Now that strawberries are plentiful and affordable enjoy these puddings.

In the kitchen with Lyndey


Salmon with Prosciutto, Asparagus and Smashed Potatoes

The printed recipe is here. If you would like to see more of my videos, subscribe to my YouTube channel HERE.

Loving London

It is truly wonderful to be back in London and slowly re-visiting old haunts. Having friends and family here is special but so is walking familiar streets. I’ve been busy since I’ve been here but have managed to get out a bit.

I had a marvellous evening yesterday, with a new friend, another travel writer (whom I had met online when she was researching a story on Australian cuisine) who also does theatre reviews. Lucky me. She took me to Musicals by Candlelight in the Actors’ Church in Covent Garden. The venue is special to me as there was a memorial service for my actor son Blair after he died so prematurely. He had worked in the UK as well as Australia so very appropriate. This Inigo Jones designed church (1631-1633) gained its moniker after the opening of the nearby Theatre Royal Drury Lane and the Royal Opera House. The church now has its own in-house professional theatre company, Iris Theatre and puts on over 400 events per year. It looked wonderful candlelit.

Icon Strings, a group of four, beautifully dressed musicians comprising two violins, a viola and a cello performed a repertoire of songs from shows like Les Misérables, West Side StoryMy Fair Lady (George Bernard Shaw set the opening scene of Pygmalion – the play that formed the basis for My Fair Lady – under the Portico) and many more, even Frozen and The Greatest Showman. Icon Strings is a collective of some of the top chamber musicians in London, all prize-winning graduates of the top London and International Conservatories. They combine fabulous musicianship and a touch of glamour with themed programmes to convey the beauty of classical music through energetic and heartfelt performances. Certainly, they were sensational and seemed to really enjoy themselves too. These concerts are sporadic but will go through until December. I’ll go back. You can watch a snippet of another performance here. Just scroll down.

Before the performance, we met up at Barrafina in Adelaide Street, Covent Garden. I have been to Dean Street which is walk-in only but good to be able to book here. Each restaurant has an open kitchen, with a marble-topped bar where guests sit and watch the chefs at work. The a la carte menus comprise authentic regional dishes from around Spain and there is also a daily changing specials menu unique to each restaurant, based partly on the fresh seafood display. The concise wine list features the finest Spanish sherries, Cavas and wines. We began with fried pimientos de padron (which are in season as I saw them at the market). True to form a couple were hot, hot, hot and most were not. Also a stuffed zucchini flower. The stars of the show were the prawns with sliced garlic and a sensational Arroz de Marisco (seafood rice). Washed down with a glass of rose and then rioja. Such fun being back in Europe! I’m off to Quo Vadis tonight.

L: Gambas (prawns with garlic) and R: Arroz de Marisco

Things to read, share and experience

Asian greens. Photo from Eativity.

Refettorio, a community kitchen has opened in Surry Hills, a collaboration between OzHarvest and the incredible chef Massimo Bottura. While it’s all about serving vegetarian meals to people in need, using ingredients diverted from waste, it will also be open fortnightly on a Thursday evening for paying guests. Read more in Broadsheet.
Eativity shares In season: know your Asian vegetables
and here’s a blog I republished recently How to stock a pantry.
Forbes Magazine has published its 16 Best Italian Restaurants in London. I went to Norma soon after it opened a couple of years ago and loved it. There are quite a few old faithfuls there which never disappoint but also some others to try.
Just in time for Negroni Week next week, my friend Darren Purchase has shared this creative recipe for Negroni Mandarins. What a great way to keep those mandarins going after the season ends!