From Mother to Mother: Recipes from a Family Kitchen with Lisa Faulkner

Lisa Faulkner joined us at Hive to catch up and share some insights and her favourite recipe from her new book From Mother to Mother: Recipes from a Family Kitchen.

Do you ever take inspiration from places you have travelled, or visited?

Everywhere, I take inspiration from everywhere. It’s my favourite thing about going anywhere that I haven’t been before. It’s finding people that live in the place, finding out about different foods, traditions, people fascinate me and food fascinates me so going somewhere different is a bonus.

Being part of a ‘Master’ Chef household, do you both do your fair share of cooking? If so, who would you say is the better cook?

Obviously John is the better cook as he’s the chef (and he’s brilliant) but we both cook all the time, we both share the cooking and love cooking together. It’s lovely!

What is your favourite flavour (of anything)

Oh god, I love butter. The flavour of butter maybe one of my favourite things, oh and coriander!

Do you have any tips out there for aspiring baker?

The tip I got from Mary Berry was read the recipe three times. The first time you read it you don’t really take it in or you are just looking at the ingredients and nothing else. So if you read it three times before you do it you will be able to prepare yourself much better.

What is your favourite recipe from the book?

There are so many favourites! I was looking at them yesterday and keep changing my mind on them. I love the peanut chicken satay balls at the moment they are my favourite thing but it changes on a daily basis!

Is there anything you really enjoy making with your daughter?

Pizza. She loves making pizza. She loves making soup – there is a tortilla soup in the book that she loves so yeah quite a lot of things. She would much rather make savoury things than sweet so we make the big crab linguini on the front (of the book) she likes doing that as well.

Are there any foods you really dislike?

Liver, Kidney…so offal, basically, is awful!

Marmite – love it? Hate it?

Love it. Love it. Love it!

Do you have any tips our there for busy working mums?

I think that we all feel so guilty and I think that we just need to give ourselves a break. Sometimes you can’t cook, sometimes you can’t be there, sometimes you wake up late and we give ourselves a hard time trying to be perfect. Nobody’s perfect and that’s what makes us brilliant at our job because you understand all the little bits that make you imperfect.

Do you have a favourite meal as a child that you like to make now?

Chicken tarragon. It’s in my first book but it’s my favourite and in fact there’s two recipes very similar in this book because I absolutely love it. It was one of my mum’s favourite dishes and she used to make it for our birthdays and it’s still my favourite thing to make.

What is your quick fix when you get ‘hangry’?

Oh it depends, I mean if it’s a quick dinner then it’s something like a broccoli pasta which takes no time at all. It’s also Billie’s go to recipe that he asks for dinner!

What would you say is the one item that is totally invaluable in the kitchen?

I love my kitchen aid.

Do you have a baking ritual? 

No I don’t have a ritual but I do listen to music. I love to put on some music and cook all day, that’s my favourite thing.

Traditional Malaysian Chicken Satay Balls


Serves 4

A traditional satay sauce is quite thick, but for this dish John loosens it with coconut milk to make a more liquid sauce for the chicken balls and noodles.

My other half, John, is a chef and an Aussie. Ever since he came back from working in Malaysia and made this dish for Billie and me I have been pestering him for this Chicken Satay recipe. A traditional satay sauce is quite thick, but for this dish John loosens it with coconut milk to make a more liquid sauce for the chicken balls and noodles. I don’t think you will ever want to buy a jar of ready-made satay sauce again, but for those among you who have no time but want to make the balls and noodles, you can cheat and use shop-bought sauce and then loosen it with coconut milk, I won’t tell!

If your children are reluctant to try spice, satay is a great way to introduce them to it gently. There’s only a mild hit of chilli, and most kids just love the sweetness of the peanut butter mixed with the coconut milk – which is seriously moreish – so they don’t even notice there’s a bit of kick behind them.


  • 1 x 400g tin coconut milk, chilled for a few hours or overnight
  • 2 tsp Thai red curry paste
  • 3 tbsp peanut butter
  • 2 tsp light soy sauce
  • 400g minced chicken or turkey
  • 200g medium egg noodles
  • To serve
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
  • 4 spring onions, finely sliced
  • Handful of chopped coriander
  • Lime wedges


  1. Without shaking the tin of coconut milk, open and scoop the solid layer of cream from the top into a pan. Add the curry paste and cook over a medium–high heat until the sauce splits. Add the peanut butter and soy sauce and a third of the remaining coconut milk, mix together then bring to the boil and bubble away until thickened. Keep the sauce warm over a low heat while you make the chicken balls.
  2. Add a heaped tablespoon of this sauce to the minced chicken, stir to combine, and shape into balls – about the size of a ping pong ball. Heat a frying pan and brown the chicken balls all over, then add them to the sauce with the remaining coconut milk.
  3. Cook the noodles according to the packet instructions, then drain and add to the chicken balls and sauce. Toss everything together then serve scattered with the sesame seeds, spring onions, coriander and lime wedges to squeeze over.

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