I was really delighted to see that a New Zealand book that I really enjoyed and have written about here – Taste: Baking with Flavour by Dean Brettschneider and
Lauraine Jacobs – took gold in its category (Soft Cover Recipe Book under US$25) at the 2005 World Food Media Awards in Adelaide last weekend. There was stiff competition in that area and I thought that Mary Contini’s blend of memoir and recipes, Dear Francesca, might have taken the prize but it’s great to see such an approachable book on baking getting acknowledged. The fact that it’s a Kiwi book, of course, makes it even better!
Stephanie Alexander received honours on home ground for her revised and updated The Cook’s Companion, tying with an American publication, The Breath of a Wok by Grace Young and Alan Richardson, for the Best Food Book award. Barbara of Auckland’s Winos and Foodies had picked Plenty by Gay Bilson in this category and, as I’m immersed in it at the moment on her recommendation, I can see why.
Alastair Hendy, the British food writer and photographer, received Ladles for Best Food Photography and Best Food Journalist, both of which he also won in 2003. New Zealand magazine Home & Entertaining – I can’t say I’ve ever noticed it but will be keeping my eyes open from now on – took the award for Best Food Section in a Magazine and the Best Food and/or Drink Website was the ever-useful Leite’s Culinaria.
Among the other winners (full list here) I have only read Tessa Kiros’ delightful Falling Cloudberries, a journey through the foods of her life, including those of her Greek Cypriot and Finnish forbearers, which received a gold Ladle for being the Best Hard Cover Recipe Book over US$25. Apparently there were almost 1,000 items of work to be judged. Not all were cookbooks but there were enough in there to make me feel sorry for the judges. I’m only just barely getting through the pile by my own bedside at the moment!