Ben Hill is a reporter for The New Zealand Herald

Nigella Lawson in New Zealand: Chefs ready for challenge

Serving up dinner for a celebrity chef is no easy feat.

That was the challenge for chefs at The Langham who were task with impressing Nigella Lawson at a special dining experience last night.

Executive chef Volker Marecek told the Herald he was up for the task.

"It's a nice challenge, but it's also a little bit scary, we want to match her expectations.

"We want to make sure she enjoys the food, it's exciting to be cooking for someone with her profile."

The menu was inspired by the culinary queen's love of fresh and simple flavours, and is all sourced from New Zealand.

"There will be cured venison to start, and we will use lots of nice rhubarb, summer leaves like lettuce, blackberries and elder flower gel."

The main course will be loin of lamb served with parsnip puree, pickled mushrooms and a licorice sauce with freeze-dried licorice.

Dessert will be familiar to the domestic goddess as it is one of her own recipes, a dark Ghana chocolate mousse from Whittaker's with chive cupcakes and a lemon-curd tart.

The event was hosted by Newstalk ZB's Kerre McIvor, with live music by Dave Dobbyn and an interactive Q + A with Lawson.

She spoke about her food and business successes, and those attending were be given a copy of her latest cookbook Simply Nigella: Feel Good Food to take home.

- NZ Herald

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