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Chef on Chef

"Who would I love to most interview for the inaugural ‘Chef on Chef’ column for the Australian Financial Review? The extremely special Josh Niland of Sydney fish restaurant Saint Peter, Paddington. Enjoy reading about this young chef’s views on sustainability, social media and the future of food. Thanks so much Josh and thank you Jill Dupleix and the AFR for inviting me to take part in this great new concept, KK!"

Full Article: Chef on chef: Kylie Kwong interviews Josh Niland

Photography | James Alcock

Photography | James Alcock

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The New York Times & the W50B Restaurants Awards

The New York Times has weighed in on the choice to host the World's 50 Best Restaurant Awards in Melbourne with this piece published today 'How Melbourne Landed The World's 50 Best Restaurants Awards'.

Kylie had the opportunity to serve some of her iconic Billy Kwong dishes at the Chefs' Feast event, a showcase of local produce and flavours, ahead of the World's 50 Best Restaurants Awards Night. 

'SO AMAZING to have the opportunity to offer some of the world’s greatest chefs and foodies our stunning Australian produce and generosity of spirit, last Tuesday on St.Kilda Beach, Melbourne, for the World's 50 Best Restaurants Awards. Congratulations to Ben Shewry, Dan Hunter and David Thompson in particular, KK! XXXX'

Kylie Kwong at the Chefs’ Feast, a showcase of local produce and flavors at St. Kilda Beach, ahead of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants Awards. Image – Simon Shiff for The New York Times.

Kylie Kwong at the Chefs’ Feast, a showcase of local produce and flavors at St. Kilda Beach, ahead of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants Awards. Image – Simon Shiff for The New York Times.

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GOOD FOOD RECIPE

RED-BRAISED, CARAMELISED PORK BELLY WITH FRESH FINGER LIMES

Red-braised master stock is the perfect stock for poaching and braising meat and poultry. Apart from pork belly, whole quails, pigeon, lamb ribs, duck breasts and beef brisket all work really well when red-braised. After cooking with the stock, you simply strain it and freeze it indefinitely to use again. It ages gracefully, developing a stronger flavour over time. You can, of course, substitute fresh lemon or lime cheeks for the finger limes.

To view the recipe on goodfood.com.au or browse more recipes, click here.

Photo: William Meppem Styling Hannah Meppem

Photo: William Meppem Styling Hannah Meppem

INGREDIENTS

3.5 litres red-braised master stock (see recipe below)
1 x 450g free-range boneless pork belly, skin on, at room temperature
1 cup (220g) brown sugar
1 cup (250ml) water
2 tbsp fish sauce
juice of 1-2 lemons
1/2 tsp Sichuan peppercorns
4 fresh finger limes sliced in half lengthways (or use 2 x lemon or lime cheeks)


Red-braised Master Stock
4 spring onions, trimmed and halved
80g ginger, thickly sliced
6 garlic cloves, crushed
4 strips (about 6cm x 1cm) orange peel, white pith removed
8 whole star anise
4 cinnamon quills
375ml (1 cups) light soy sauce*
250ml (1 cup) lightly packed dark brown sugar
1 tsp sesame oil
3 litres cold water

* check gluten-free if required

METHOD

1. For the master stock, place all ingredients in a large saucepan that will later hold the pork belly comfortably, and bring to the boil, stirring to dissolve sugar. Reduce heat to a gentle simmer and cook for 25 minutes to allow the flavours to infuse.

2. Meanwhile, place pork belly in a separate saucepan, cover with plenty of cold water and bring to the boil. Simmer for 10 minutes, then drain. This will remove any impurities from the meat.

3. After 25 minutes, return the stock to the boil. Lower pork belly into the stock, ensuring it is fully submerged – you may need to weigh it down with a plate – and poach pork gently for three hours or until the meat is very tender. There should be no more than an occasional ripple breaking the surface; adjust the temperature, if necessary. Do not put a lid on the pan at any stage. (Depending on the size of your pan, you may need to top up the stock with hot water during cooking to keep the pork submerged.) To check if it's ready, pierce the pork with a small knife – you should meet no resistance.

4. Remove pork from the pot and set aside on a paper towel-covered plate to drain thoroughly. When pork is cool enough to handle, carefully cut into large bite-sized pieces. After cooking with the stock, you can strain it and freeze it to use again. It will develop a stronger flavour over time.

5. Place the cup of brown sugar and cup of water in a medium-sized pan and bring to the boil, then allow to caramelise, which will take about six minutes. Add the fish sauce and lemon juice.

6. Add pork pieces to hot caramel sauce and toss well. Place hot pork pieces in a serving dish, sprinkle with Sichuan pepper and salt flakes, and serve with freshly squeezed finger limes.

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GOOD FOOD RECIPE

HOME-STYLE FRIED EGGS WITH CHILLI SAUCE

We go through dozens and dozens of eggs each week at Billy Kwong, cooking our "staples", which include fried rice and a version of this dish. Although these fried eggs are extremely simple to make, the deliciousness of this recipe relies upon super-fresh eggs. This dish is all about colour and texture for me. What you want is crunchy egg whites, and crispy golden brown, yet, runny yolks. Serve this dish with some steamed rice, and call it a meal.

To view the recipe on goodfood.com.au or browse more recipes, click here.

Photo: William Meppem Styling Hannah Meppem

Photo: William Meppem Styling Hannah Meppem

METHOD:

Prepare the chilli sauce

1. Chop chilli and ginger in a food processor until finely chopped.

2. Heat oil in a wok until the surface seems to shimmer slightly. Reduce heat to low-medium, add chilli and ginger and cook, stirring regularly, for about three minutes to cook out the flavours. Add sugar and cook for one minute, stirring regularly so sauce doesn't catch on the wok base.

3. Stir through soy sauce, reduce heat to low and cook, still stirring, for 10 minutes – the sauce should darken, and the oil will separate at this stage. The chilli sauce can be used straight away or cooled and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.

For eggs

1. Heat the oil in a hot wok until surface seems to shimmer slightly.

2. Crack eggs into a small bowl, then pour into hot oil. After one minute, reduce heat to medium, allowing the underside of the eggs to become firm and crisp – the yolks should still be runny at this point.

3. Carefully slide a spatula under the eggs, then pour off and discard the oil. Return eggs to wok and cook for a further minute to become crisp.

4. Gently remove eggs from wok and drain off any excess oil before easing onto a plate. Drizzle eggs with soy sauce, chilli sauce, garnish with pepper and spring onions, and serve immediately.

INGREDIENTS:

2 tbsp chilli sauce
1 cups vegetable oil
4 free-range eggs*
1 tbsp light soy sauce
pinch ground white pepper
1/2 cup spring onions, finely sliced

*Weekly farmers markets always have great free-range or organic eggs on offer. Sure, the eggs may cost a bit more by the dozen, but in my view, it is a worthwhile investment, from a sustainability and flavour perspective,

For the chilli sauce (makes 240g or 1 cup)
8 large red chillies, roughly chopped
75g ginger, roughly chopped
125ml vegetable oil
tsp white sugar
1 tbsp light soy sauce

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GOOD FOOD RECIPE

PRAWN WONTONS WITH SPRING ONION, GINGER & VINEGAR DRESSING

Good quality wonton wrappers and super fresh Australian prawns, when boiled, transform into silky, mouth-watering, delectable, clean-tasting wontons. A version of this recipe, steamed prawn wontons with organic brown rice vinegar dressing, has been a staple on my Billy Kwong menu for the past 16 years, and at our large Kwong family gatherings.

Photo: William Meppem

Photo: William Meppem

INGREDIENTS:

Dressing

2½ tbsp light soy sauce

1 tbsp finely diced ginger

1 tbsp finely diced garlic

2 tbsp finely sliced spring onions

2 tbsp finely diced celery

2 tbsp kecap manis

2 tbsp malt vinegar

¼ tsp chilli oil

½ tsp sesame oil

Wontons

9 uncooked medium-sized prawns (about 300g)

2 tbsp finely sliced spring onion

1½ tsp finely diced ginger

1 tsp shao hsing wine or dry sherry

1 tsp light soy sauce

¼ tsp white sugar

¼ tsp sesame oil

16 fresh wonton wrappers, about 7cm square

METHOD:

1. Combine soy sauce, ginger, garlic, spring onions, celery, kecap manis, vinegar and both oils in a bowl and set aside.

2. Peel and de-vein prawns, then dice prawn meat – you should have about 150 grams of diced prawn meat. Combine prawn meat with remaining ingredients, except wonton wrappers, in a bowl, cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Fill and shape wontons:

3. Place a rounded teaspoon of the prawn filling in the centre of a wonton wrapper. Dip your finger in water and moisten the edges of the wrapper.

 

 

4. Fold the wrapper in half to enclose the filling, creating a rectangle. Press lightly around filling and along edges to seal.

 

 

5. Hold the wonton lengthways in between your hands and fold the sealed edge of the wonton back in on itself.

 

 

 

 

6. Lightly moisten one corner of the folded edge with water. Take the two ends in your fingers, bring them together with a twisting action, and press them lightly to join.

7. Repeat with remaining filling and wrappers.

 

 

8. Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil. Carefully drop wontons, in batches, into the water and cook for two minutes, or until they are just cooked. To test the wontons, you will need to remove one using a slotted spoon and cut into it with a sharp knife to see if the prawns are cooked through. Remove wontons with a slotted spoon and drain. Repeat process with remaining wontons.

9. Arrange wontons on a platter and serve immediately, drizzled with dressing.

TIPS:

■ Fresh wonton wrappers are available not only in all Asian grocery stores but also in the refrigerated sections of most supermarkets.

■ Sprinkle finished dish with Sichuan pepper and salt for an extra layer of flavour: combine one tablespoon Sichuan peppercorns with three tablespoons salt flakes. Dry roast over medium-heat, tossing occasionally. Once the peppercorns begin to pop and become aromatic, about 1-2 minutes, take off the heat. Allow to cool then coarsely grind using a mortar and pestle or spice grinder. Store in an airtight container for several weeks.

■ It is fine to omit the chilli oil.

■ Boil the wontons and serve them instead in a light broth (fish, chicken, vegetable broth best ) for a simple version of prawn wonton soup – I season my Chinese soups with light soy to taste and a touch of sesame oil. Bring the broth to the boil, season, then add some freshly trimmed and washed bok choy leaves and some finely sliced fresh Asian-style mushrooms, cooking for one minute. Place boiled wontons into a bowl, ladle over the hot broth.

■ You could deep-fry these wontons for crispy prawn wontons. Heat vegetable oil in a hot wok until the surface seems to shimmer slightly. Carefully add the wontons in batches and deep-fry for about two minutes or until just cooked and lightly browned. To test the wontons, remove one using a slotted spoon and cut into it to see if the prawns are cooked through. Remove wontons with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. I would serve these wontons with a sauce such as sweet chilli or sweet and sour.

To view the recipe on goodfood.com.au or browse more recipes, click here.

 

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#Cookforsyria at BK this March

Photography / Nik Toh

Photography / Nik Toh

'Throughout March restaurateurs, chefs, bakers and cafe owners from around the country are taking part in the Cook For Syria campaign by putting a 'Syrian inspired twist' on one of their favourite dishes and donating $3 from each sale of that dish. Syrian cuisine is one of the oldest in the world reflecting the country's rich cultural heritage with influences from across the Middle East and beyond. Those participating have a wealth of ingredients and ideas to draw upon. I personally have learnt so much about this stunning culinary culture through my colleagues and friends, Syrian sisters, Sharon and Carol Salloum of Sydney's local Almond Bar. Across March at Billy Kwong we will be offering a range of dishes with a Syrian-inspired twist such as 'Red-braised, Caramelised Flinders Island Wallaby Tail w Salt Bush Salt, Fresh Finger Limes & Aleppo Pepper'. The $3 donation from each sale of our Cook For Syria dishes will go to UNICEF Australia to help the millions of children affected by the crisis in Syria. The idea is to encourage people to eat out during March for a worthwhile cause, raise awareness and break down barriers. Cook For Syria campaign initiator, influential London instagrammer @clerkenwellboyec1 states "We hope that through this campaign we will not only be able to raise significant and much needed money for the UNICEF of Children of Syria Fund, but will also increase awareness of the plight of children in the war-torn country. Through cooking, sharing recipes and the reach of social media, we invite everyone to help make a difference and positive contribution towards this important initiative." Thank you to Clerkenwell Boy for bringing our global foodie community together so effectively and inspiringly.' - Kylie Kwong 

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GOOD FOOD

I’m so delighted in becoming a regular recipe contributor to the Good Food Team. Thank you so much to Good Food and The Sydney Morning Herald for allowing me this great opportunity to share my favourite dishes. I really hope you enjoy my recipes each month, kicking it off here with Hokkien Noodles with Chicken, Chilli and Coriander.

HOKKIEN NOODLES WITH CHICKEN, CHILLI & CORIANDER

METHOD:

1. Combine chicken and marinade ingredients in a bowl, cover, and leave in the refrigerator to marinate for 30 minutes.

2. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a hot wok until the surface seems to shimmer slightly. Add marinated chicken and stir-fry for 1 minute. Remove from wok and set aside.

3. Add remaining oil to hot wok with onion and ginger and stir-fry for one minute or until onion is lightly browned. Toss in noodles, reserved chicken, wine or sherry, sugar, soy sauce, vinegar and sesame oil and stir-fry for 1½ minutes. Add spring onion and half the chilli and stir-fry for a further 30 seconds or until chicken is just cooked through and the noodles are hot.

4. Arrange noodles in bowls, top with coriander and remaining chilli. Serve immediately.

TIPS: Feel free to add any fresh herbs you like. A mixture of Vietnamese mint, sweet Thai basil and dill would also work really well.

One of the best kitchen tips Mum has every given me is to always use thigh rather than breast fillets when stir-frying. This specific cut of chicken retains moisture and tenderness throughout the stir-frying process.

INGREDIENTS:

400g chicken thigh fillets, cut into 2cm slices

¼ cup vegetable oil

1 small red onion, cut in half and then into thick wedges

12 ginger slices

1 x 450g packet fresh Hokkien noodles

2 tbsp shao hsing wine or dry sherry

1 tbsp white sugar

2 tbsp light soy sauce

1 tbsp malt vinegar

½ tsp sesame oil

¼ cup coriander springs

½ cup spring onion

2 large red chillies, finely sliced on the diagonal

Marinade:

1 tbsp white sugar

1 tbsp light soy sauce

1 tbsp Shao Hsing wine or dry sherry

½ tsp sesame oil

Photography & Styling / William and Hannah Meppem

Photography & Styling / William and Hannah Meppem

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A 'HEADY BREW'

Fascinating article from the January issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller as Paulette Whitney of Provenance Growers reflects on the process of creating our bespoke Billy Kwong Farmhouse ambigua with Ashley and Jane Huntington of Two Metre Tall Brewery; ‘A meeting of minds, native flora, European brewing methods and Chinese technique creates something wonderful,’ a brew that is literally ‘alive’. To read the piece, click on the title of this post to the left, 'A Heady Brew'. 

'Heady Brew', Paulette Whitney, Australian Gourmet Traveller, January 2017

'Heady Brew', Paulette Whitney, Australian Gourmet Traveller, January 2017

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#COOKFORSYRIA 27 FEB

Photo / Nikki To

Photo / Nikki To

"SO THRILLED to be a part of the total inspiring and extremely important #CookForSyria project through the upcoming dinner on the 27th of February at Three Blue Ducks Rosebery. This dinner kicks off a month of fundraising for UNICEF Australia's #CookForSyria helping deliver emergency supplies, protection and support to millions of children affected by the conflict in Syria.

Local Syrian sisters, Carol and Sharon Salloum of Almond Bar will be showcasing their delicious, traditional Syrian-style dishes, whilst we other chefs offer our interpretation of Syrian cuisine combined with our own unique style. I can't wait to cook alongside my own local food community of chefs including Peter Gilmore (Bennelong and Quay), David Thompson (Long Chim), Ross Lusted (The Bridge Room), Paul Carmichael (Momofuku Seiōbo) Darren Robertson, Mark LaBrooy and Andy Allen (Three Blue Ducks), Mat Lindsay (Ester), Clayton Wells (Automata), Luke Powell (LP’s Quality Meats) and Mitch Orr (Acme & Bar Brose).”

For tickets call Three Blue Ducks on 02 9389 0010 | For more information on Unicef Australia’s Syria Crisis appeal visit UNICEF | Follow the global #CookForSyria effort on Instagram

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Introducing 'Kylie's Table'

We are so excited to announce the launch of ‘Kylie’s Table’ a bespoke Billy Kwong experience for 'Groups' and 'Special Events'. In our intimate and stylish back room, Kylie will personally welcome guests, explain her food philosophy and present a carefully selected menu of Billy Kwong dishes.

Kylie shares the inspiration behind ‘Kylie’s Table’;  “When I was growing up, we had the most wonderful dinner parties at home. My parents were extremely gregarious and invited 15 or so friends around for an enormous Chinese feast, almost every fortnight. This is how, when and where I learnt many cooking skills and lessons. Mum, through her own love of cooking taught me several key messages back then; that food connects people, that food makes people happy. Everyone always felt so welcome as they gathered around a table groaning with delicious food that we had spent all day creating. Those magical evenings were all about conviviality, good times, generosity, abundance, warmth and community. This is the experience I want to share with you through ‘Kylie’s Table.’

 

Kylie's Table / Photo - Penny Lane

Kylie's Table / Photo - Penny Lane

For more information see our ‘Kylie’s Table’ page or contact us via 02 9332 3300 or enquiries@billykwong.com.au

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HAPPY AUSTRALIAN-CHINESE NEW YEAR!

‘Happy Australian-Chinese New Year everyone, from my beautiful big Kwong family to yours! Thank-you so much to Myffy Rigby and the Sydney Morning Herald for helping us highlight the importance of family, food, connection and some important conversations through this beautiful article.'   

Photo / Nic Walker

Photo / Nic Walker

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Australian Native 'Superfoods'

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Our Billy Kwong Salt Bush Cakes are mentioned amongst some amazing dishes that highlight native Australian ingredients in this post from Tourism Australia. It’s noted that not only are these indigenous ingredients ‘bursting with flavour’ many have unique properties and nutrients also. Our Billy Kwong Salt Bush Cakes are made with a bespoke blend of organic stoneground wheat flour made into a flaky pastry which encases native salt bush leaves from Outback Pride ( which are simply mixed with butter ). This is our version of an authentic 'Australian-Chinese street food snack' which celebrates not only deliciousness but also our precious indigenous cultural heritage and traditional food system.

 

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'Where in the World to Eat'

We are very excited to be included in Conde Nast Traveler’s ‘Best Restaurants in the World’ list for 2016, among some of the most amazing restaurants from around the globe! Check out the full list here

Photography - Penny Lane

Photography - Penny Lane

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CARRIAGEWORKS MASTERCLASS - 17 SEPT

Join Kylie Kwong for a masterclass on September 17, 11am at Carriageworks.

Kylie is a 'third generation Australian and 29th generation Kwong' and will be demonstrating dishes that express her version of authentic ‘Australian-Chinese’ fare. In addition, Kylie will be sharing stories about where her passion for food comes from, and her inspirations drawn from participating in René  Redzepi’s recently held MAD5 Symposium in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Tickets can be booked through the Carriageworks site. 

Looking forward to seeing you there!

 

Carriageworks Masterclass 17 Sept

Carriageworks Masterclass 17 Sept

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MADYale

Image c/o MAD

Image c/o MAD

THANK YOU to René Redzepi and Yale University for the opportunity to be a part of the MADYale Chef Leadership Summit - what an amazing experience!

MAD described the context of this special symposium:
"At this moment in time chefs yield unprecedented cultural influence. We’ve gathered a group of great chefs from all over the world for an intensive weeklong summit with some of the great minds at Yale University to build a new knowledge base and reinvent leadership for chefs, both inside and outside their kitchens.
Along with the Yale Sustainable Food Program, the Yale farm, and academics from all across the university and beyond, we’re engaging in a crash course and intense discussion about all that food touches, from taste physiology, food politics, sustainable farming of land and sea, food justice to food history."

Fellow chefs René Redzepi, Rosio Sanchez, David Chang, Jessica Koslow, Alex Atala, Olivier Roellinger, Michel Troigros, April Bloomfield and I enjoyed the most mind blowing week of discussions, excursions, talks and discoveries. I can't wait to continue to share all that i've learnt!

For a round up of the week's events check out this post Reflections on the MADYale Leadership Summit by Bella Napier on behalf of the Yale Sustainable Food Program.

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A TIME TO CELEBRATE

'Thank-you so much to all of our peers who voted for us in this year's Australia's Top Restaurant Awards. We are absolutely thrilled to come in at No.26 this year, 6 places up from last year! A very special feeling indeed, to be supported and acknowledged by our own chef community. Congratulations to all of you and most importantly, an enormous thank you to my incredibly hardworking, talented staff and to our local Potts Point friends and co-collaborators. KK XXX'

 

Photography - Penny Lane

Photography - Penny Lane

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MAD SYD 3 APRIL 2016

Kylie is thrilled to be able to share her MAD Sydney presentation with you all.

MAD SYD took place last Sunday at the Sydney Opera House and the theme of the day was ‘Tomorrow’s Meal’. 

Head to Ideas at the House to view the other truly inspiring talks of the day from René Redzepi, Chido Govera, Rebecca Huntley, David Chang and Massimo Bottura.

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TWO GOOD

For every lunch that Two Good delivers, one goes to someone in need.

"Such an important and meaningful initiative to be a part of … thanks so much to Rob Caslick and St Canice’s Parish for including us in your wonderful work," Kylie Kwong.

Read more about the Two Good initiative in a recent article via Broadsheet Sydney here.

To place an order visit twogood.com.au.

Photography Nikki Toh - Broadsheet Sydney

Photography Nikki Toh - Broadsheet Sydney

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MAD takes over the Sydney Opera House!

Photo - James Brickwood courtesy of goodfood.com.au

Photo - James Brickwood courtesy of goodfood.com.au

To read a little more about the event, see a recent piece by Good Food

It has been announced that MAD is taking over the Sydney Opera House on the 3rd of April. It’s going to be an amazing day of talks and ideas exploring the future of food. To register for tickets head to the Sydney Opera House site

Kylie is honoured to have been invited to speak at the event alongside Rene Redzepi, David Chang, Massimo Bottura, Chido Govera and Rebecca Huntley. "Having MAD here in Sydney is totally amazing in that Rene is bringing the world to our doorstep and inviting us to engage and be a part of these bigger conversations around 'food futures' and a chef's part in it..... In essence I will be sharing my story and experiences, including the way Rene Redzepi himself played an enormous part in my exploring new directions in cooking and ingredients and how this led me to Mike & Gayle Quarmby of Outback Pride. How in turn, I realise that collaboration and community are really important to me and the way that I work." 

 

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