Appetite for Australian food


Nigella Lawson-Getty Images
Nigella Lawson-Getty Images

The sultry domestic goddess cast a spell on the thousands attending her events around the country last month.

In Australia to promote her latest penning Simply Nigella, she also talked about her love of Australian cuisine and stint on this year’s Masterchef series.

Lawson will appear on the show as a guest judge as part of ‘Nigella Week’, judging invention tests and mentoring contestants.

The 56-year-old said she was enjoying her time in Australia sampling an array of cuisines and wine including a drop of the Amber 2014 by Margaret River’s Cullen Wine.

“In Australia, you are blessed with the cuisine of so many cultures,” she said.

“In a way that seems very relaxed, these various cuisines and cultures have become fused to become a personal and totally unique cuisine.

“There is more to Australian food, it does have Greek influences, Italian influences, it’s got Asian influences and somehow this creates a sort of cooking that is alive and vibrant.”

A former journalist, Lawson said it was her love of language that accidently got her into a career in food.

“I was a feature writer and thought my first book was a one-off,” she said.

“I had to learn to do things like baking and make pastry. It wasn’t meant to be a career shift but I suppose these things happen.

“When opportunities arise, instinctively, one knows whether that feels right or not and I think it is so important to trust your instinct.”

Having had no prior food training, the mother-of-two, who does not consider herself a cook, said anyone could do so and it was just a matter of being interested.

“I cook in the sense that I cook a lot, but when I started I felt that cooking had been dominated by professional chefs, not to say I don’t respect chefs enormously or admire their talent and skill,” she said.

“However, if you needed a qualification to cook then human beings would have fallen out of the evolutionary loop a long time ago.

“Those of us who like cooking, it gives us pleasure, strength, comfort and a feeling of being creative but I do not think a person who cannot cook is inferior.

“I don’t think there is a moral imperative to cook. Anyone can cook – you just might not be interested in it.”