This beautiful book provides favourite recipes (100 of them) and stories of a life in food by one of New Zealand's best-known food writers.
It is no exaggeration to say that Lauraine Jacobs is a New Zealand food legend. Whether it's through her hundreds of recipes written over the years for Cuisine magazine, her marvellous weekly column in the Listener or her cooking demonstrations at the Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch Food Shows, New Zealand cooks know that her recipes are utterly reliable and totally delicious.
There are few food writers more experienced or more expert. Lauraine trained at the Cordon Bleu school in Paris, and for over 40 years since she has travelled widely, championed New Zealand food and wine producers, judged restaurant awards, been president of the International Association of Culinary Professionals, sat on government advisory panels, written several cookbooks and eaten at many of the world's finest restaurants.
Last night history was made when her gorgeous new book was launched at the New World Supermarket in Remuera. The first-ever New Zealand book launch to be held in a supermarket. A hundred or so happy guests filled the wine section and overflowed into the deli, (a most apt area for us to be in), and after welcomes and introductions by Nicola Legat, publishing supremo at Random House NZ, and an entertaining and humorous address from supermarket owner Adrian Barkla, it was the author's turn. Lauraine has graciously made her address available to me to share with you, it explains her choice of this supermarket for her launch.
Welcome to you all and thank you so much – means a lot to have such wonderful support from all my friends here, whether they are personal buddies or professional friends from the world of food writing.
I am delighted to share with you the best little supermarket in New Zealand. A lot of people were a bit quizzical when I chose to launch Everlasting Feast here but there are very good reasons for this.
When I came to live in Remuera 37 years ago, the Victoria Ave shops were vastly different from today. One land agent, two or three banks and the Remuera Post office sat proudly on the corner. How things have changed!
The three dairies and milk bar have gone, The IGA and Four Square went, we lost the plant shop, the Wheelers book store, the amazing cake shop where my kids had all those lovely donuts and Chelsea buns, Boodles restaurant and Hellaby’s the butcher.
We’ve now got land agents and banks coming out our ears and of course, the best addition that arrived about 33 years ago, this amazing supermarket you’re in tonight.
Adrian Barkla’s New World Remuera is one of my happy places - I come her eat least four times a week and I can now get almost every ingredient I want here. I think every recipe for the one hundred recipes in Everlasting Feast can be found in this store. I know the people who work here by name; Grant the butcher, George the frozen man. Vake the wine man and of course my wonderful Tongan relations, Ofa and Toa who pack the shelves, keep the bread stacks filled and work on the checkout. There’s even a photo of one of them in the back of my book.
So I’d especially like to thank Adrian, his manager Gay upstairs and Vake for their support in allowing us to gather here tonight. I also want to thank Dhall Nash for the Billecart Salmon champagne and Craggy Range, one of the Hawke’s Bay’s finest producers for their lovely wine.
Putting a book together is fun, not hard work at all. I think you will all agree that this is a particularly beautiful book. Everlasting Feast is much more than a recipe book; there are lots of stories, opinions and travel from my life in food. The look of the book is due to four talented people; first my editor Nicky Legat from Random House who gave the confidence to write my stories, and arranged for the talented young Kate Barraclough to design the gorgeous layout.
Each month I work with two very talented ladies for my Listener magazine food shoots.
Kate Arbuthnot is a quirky clever stylist who produces fabulous backgrounds and props for the shots. She managed the colours and the look of the book, carefully detailing everything so it is at not repetitive.
And Elizabeth Clarkson took the beautiful shots of the food and the amazing flowers from my garden that open every chapter. Together they make a superb team, and I should add that this is the first book they’ve worked on. Let’s hope this is the beginning of something big for both!
There are many others who were involved in major and minor ways;
The team at Random House, Nicky Legat, Jennifer Balle who is the best publicist in the world, Samantha Lee, Kate Stone, Alex Bishop, and others who all form a vital part of the lengthy process.
Thank you all!
Adrian Barkla provided lot of the ingredients for the gorgeous photos, along with Regal Salmon, Lucy Meek of Saveur Duck, Shannon Auton at OOB, Organic herbs and Seedlings, Zany Zeus cheese, and Innes Moffat at NZ Deer Industry. All their products can be found here and I hope you find the recipes with them as delicious as I have.
The stories in Everlasting Feast are not just my stories, they are your stories, stories I have written with the help of the fine editors I have worked with at cuisine and the Listener, the inspiring colleagues like Kathy Paterson and Ginny Grant, and all of us who love New Zealand food. We’ve got a lot to celebrate in our country; fresh food straight from the farm, the ocean and from the hundreds of artisan producers. Long may you all have Everlasting Feasts of your own!
Well done Lauraine, it was a splendid event, fun too, and good to see you busily signing copies of the book afterwards to some of your many fans.
Among the many food personalities/writers present I recognised were Ginny Grant, Kathy Paterson, Helen Jackson, Renee Lang, Catherine Bell, Annabel Langbein, Niki Bezzant , Connie Clarkson, Pip Duncan, Fiona Smith, Celia Hay, Jenny Yee, Catherine Smith, Grant Allen and Fiona Nugent.
The author with a happy fan buying the book
Lauraine is starring at the Auckland Writers & Readers Festival next month.
Friday 17 May, 4.00pm, Lower NZI Room, Aotea Centre.
An Hour with Lauraine Jacobs - in conversation with Bookman Beattie.