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Stephanie Clifford-Smith

Stephanie Clifford-Smith is a food writer and author who has been fascinated with food for as long as she can remember. Sitting in her high chair eating a soft boiled egg followed by one of those wax papered fruit bon-bons is her earliest memory. Oddly savant on culinary recollection, her recall of non-food related detail is less impressive.

She has written for The Sydney Morning Herald’s Good Food supplement for more than 10 years including the popular Three of a Kind and Kitchen Spy columns and has reviewed for all the Fairfax guides including the Good Food Guide and their guides to pubs, cafes and budget restaurants. She co-edited the restaurant guide, Sydney Eats (formerly Cheap Eats), for three years, reviewed cookbooks for its website and advised diners on venues in her Restaurant Doctor column.

Her travel writing is usually thinly disguised food writing and has appeared in The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, The Australian, QANTAS magazine, Voyeur, Scoot, Australian Traveller, SBS’s Feast, the Hunter Valley Magazine and is widely syndicated.

Guest lecturing journalism students on food writing at the Sydney Writer’s Festival and Notre Dame University was a great way to share her experiences with next-gen critics and writing for the UK publication 1001 Foods You Must Try Before You Die brought Australian native produce to an international audience.

In her distant past she worked as a cook and a barmaid in English pubs, priming her perhaps for later work judging ham, bacon and sausages for the Sydney Fine Food Show. She has written two non-fiction books: A Marvellous Party, the biography of Australia’s first celebrity chef, Bernard King and Kink: A Straight Girl’s Investigation.

Cooking is her greatest love, and when she’s not doing it she’s thinking or reading about it. She also travels regularly, but admits her itineraries are really all about the food. Currently culinary obsessions in her home kitchen are pickling, preserving and fermenting as well as making all kinds of bread. Malaysian food remains an enduring interest.

In an effort to dispel her concern that she’s becoming one-dimensional, she also does a bit of salsa dancing - it helps burn calories.