I recently went to meet the “Domestic Goddess” herself, Nigella Lawson, at the Nigella Express book signing in Seattle. I was exhausted from a long day at work, but I waited eagerly with two of her books in my hands. Soon after I arrived, the lady sitting next to me said “She’s here! I held the door for her on her way in, and she really is that beautiful!” LOL!
I was so pleasantly surprised by Nigella; she is every wonderful inch of what she portrays on TV. Nigella began her appearance with Q&A — all of it entertaining, revealing, and funny. She loves to speak and does so as well as she writes, with fluid and vivid, engaging words.
One of the first questions someone asked Nigella was “What did you eat today?” She gave a long list, from oatmeal for breakfast to oysters and mac & cheese at Schuckers, then Northwest peppermint bark, and that afternoon, a whole bowl of nuts with drinks 🙂 Nigella loves to eat! Some people have joked about her weight, but she is clearly comfortable in her own skin. She stood tall, beautiful yet simple, just like you see her on TV & in books.
Nigella mentioned that many of her friends are chefs, but she herself prefers being a cook. As Nigella put it, it’s one thing to chisel a chrysanthemum out of a radish, but all people really need to know is how to cook and enjoy their basic every day dinner. That’s a philosophy I personally follow, as well, cooking better and eating more consciously are not about being more impressive to others, they are about living better.
In her new shows and book, Nigella shares simple recipes and methods … kinda like the no-nonsense kitchen gadgets she is known to use. The very book she was promoting — Nigella Express — has those recipes she likes to cook “everyday,” when she doesn’t have a lot of time. All the recipes in this book are one page and have from 2 to 7 simple steps.
Nigella really cooks and eats what she publishes, too! She shared with us a great story of how she cooks lunch for her production team every morning, as they film in her home, and then daily they gather together for lunch. Now that’s a great hostess! Nigella has such a down to earth and believable vibe.
After the Q&A, I was even more excited to meet her and have my copies of her books signed. All the beautiful food in the book was making me ever hungrier! I have to add that the University Book Store at UW in Seattle did an excellent job of hosting, too by making 4 of her recipes in ample amounts, freely available. I tried the Moonblush Tomatoes, and the Rocky Road Crunch Bars which I had seen her make on the Food Network a week before!
When my turn came to meet Nigella, I asked her to address my copy of How to Be a Domestic Goddess: Baking and the Art of Comfort Cooking to my mother. I told Nigella that my mother is the domestic goddess in my life, and then in signing the book, she addressed my mother as “THE domestic goddess” 🙂
In Nigella Express, I wanted Nigella to sign the Mango Split recipe page. It looks SO yummy, I can’t wait to make it!
Nigella said very sweetly, “And, why the mango?” I replied, “Well, Nigella you see I love mangoes, and you make great use of mangoes in your dishes, and I would love to feature your dish on my blog.”
Nigella smiled and said, “Wonderful!” Then, she surprised me with a story about how much her children love mangoes, too. A summer or so ago, they started a pop band and called themselves “Mango Mania!” We shared a good laugh, posed for our photo together and said our good byes.
Even though I stood in a long line with some hundreds of people, I connected with this down to earth domestic diva. Nigella was personable and she loves mangoes, too! I can’t wait to make some of the wonderful vegetarian dishes –and there are plenty! — from Nigella Express. As I feel I’ve mastered and perhaps personalized them, I will publish my results here, too!
You’ll lots of great tips and cooking help at Nigella.com.