Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Take A Peek Wednesday: Meeting Nigel Slater

            When I first moved to The Netherlands there wasn't a cooking show in site. I was so homesick I could barely stand it. I discovered we had the BBC channels and my life has never been the same. I was able to watch Nigella,Jamie Oliver, the Hairy Bikers..and Nigel Slater.  The gentle,patient and soft spoken way about him has you leaning in towards the screen to make sure you don't miss anything he says. He doesn't worry about name brand ingredients and the only thing he asks of you is to use what you have and not to worry. His laid back approach to cooking has me rushing into the kitchen in hopes of keeping that same attitude while making dinner. Sadly, I am still working on that. I can stress myself out very easily and when I can't find the ingredients I need here..well more often than not, I am ready to throw in the towel. I've gotten a lot better about making things from scratch..but I do miss certain products and now that I have been watching British cooking shows for the passed 7 years..I too want clotted cream and sausages,pork pies, and everything else they chat about.

So..last week he came to Amsterdam. They are finally releasing one of his cookbooks over here in Dutch and they were holding a kind of meet and greet session along with a meal from his cookbook. I looked at my husband when I found this out and he bought the tickets right away. I was so excited. I was able to get an English version of the book set aside and became even more excited when I learned that two of my expats friends would also be coming along. There was so much I wanted to tell him and never imagined I would get the chance to do so..but I did! 
          We kind of swarmed the poor guy and told him we were expats..I was the American and we had one Scottish and British woman. He smiled really big when he found out. He didn't expect us to come..the event was filled with food writers and publicists and anyone else having to do with the cookbook world and food writing. We were the only true fans there. I was able to tell him everything I wanted.

             This is me telling him that I loved his show,loved the way he talked about food..begging him to put out a bread baking book and just thanking him for making my life here a little more bearable. He was everything I had imagined him to be; humble, soft spoken, and shy. What I saw on tv, I got in person as well. I was on cloud nine and thanked my husband for taking the pics with his camera phone because I was so stunned to think about anything else.

                 I sat by during the dinner..well I sat next to his Dutch publicist but he was next to him..and we chatted various times during everything. When the food came out,everyone started snapping pictures of it...including him. We dined on lamb and roasted vegetables,squid, and for dessert we had a plum crumble. I had the best time. I left with an autographed copy of his cookbook and a memory to last me a lifetime. This was my first time meeting an actual celebrity and I'm glad it was him. I hope this isn't the last we see of him here and look forward to watching him on tv,smiling, and thinking back to when I met and spoke to him.