Accomplished cook, author and mother, Julia Busuttil Nishimura recently gave us a glimpse into her life in isolation.
How has your everyday routine changed in isolation?
Usually, I spend a lot of time shopping for ingredients, going to the market and meeting producers. This has been the biggest shift in my daily life since I get mostly everything delivered at the moment. Also, I am really prioritising spending time outdoors. I always have enjoyed going for walks but now it's a must, twice a day in nature.
What are you grateful for right now?
Being home together during this time is something I am extremely grateful for. Being able to spend so much time together, slow down a little is something that we don't always get to do. I am also loving the extra time I have to cook a lot and write new recipes.
What are you missing the most?
I'm definitely missing seeing friends and family. Yukito is only three months old so it's been hard not having visitors around or my mum being able to pop over to help out and my sister lives in NYC so it's been hard being so far away from each other during this time. But it means we make an extra effort to talk on the phone and keep each other updated.
What's your go-to comfort meal right now?
Definitely pasta. When I lived in Italy, we would eat pasta for lunch every single day. School would finish at 1pm and everyone would stop work so we could sit together at the table to share a meal. It is such a lovely ritual I am enjoying during this time. One of the most comforting lunches I made recently was pici, a thick Tuscan spaghetti made by hand and served with a garlic tomato sauce. It felt like a big hug!
What does a day in your life look like right now?
I’m up pretty early but Yuki is so sweet I don’t mind.
Hot cross buns and a very strong coffee for breakfast today.
I ordered some flowers yesterday and they’ve just been delivered. They really brighten up the house and make me happy!
Straight into an online interview now. I’m busy doing media at the moment for the release of my new cookbook.
Fresh pasta for lunch. Meditative and delicious.
Today we’re having ravioli filled with buffalo ricotta, mint, lemon and pecorino. I also made some spaghetti alla chitarra for Haruki as he’s not super keen on ricotta. Since we’re eating all of our meals at home, I like to make an extra effort to make it feel a little more special.
I go for a walk once a day, sometimes twice at the moment. It’s a beautiful day today so we’ve gone on a rather long walk down to the creek near our house.
I found an overhanging fig tree on our way back and made a simple snack of figs, prosciutto and basil to go with our gin and tonics for aperitivo. Now I'm off to make dinner.
A Year of Simple Food - Out August 25th
Family food is generous, unfussy and demonstrates love and care. No matter what busyness the day brings, the act of setting the table and enjoying a simple meal together is comforting and ever-reassuring.