Juliet Harbutt, one of the world’s leading experts on cheese
The cookbook that has most influenced your cooking
The Edmonds cookbook! It is a published by a New Zealand company that manufactures baking goods from flour to cake sprinkles and has everything from shortbread to shepherds pie. My granny gave it to me
The food of love… What would you cook to impress a potential date
So many choices … grilled wild salmon on a bed of mashed peas… roast lamb with quince … butternut squash and coconut soup or a cheeseboard of my favourite artisan British cheeses
Your top five dinner guests, dead or alive
Barack Obama, Prue Leith, my Mother, George Clooney and William Shakespeare
Fast food – your top snack tip
Well it has to be cheese on toast – just rub half a tomato over lightly toasted brown bread, pile on your favourite hard cheese grated mixed with finely chopped red onion and grill ….
Most memorable meal in film/literature/painting
Nothing has ever surpassed Babette’s Feast
Your worst kitchen disaster
Ah that would be the carrot cake made with the mustard and brown sugar ham glaze! In my cafe The Parsons Nose, we used to pre-bag the carrot cake mix – brown sugar, spices and flour- and the ham glaze. One (very early) morning I grabbed the wrong mix, added it to the eggs and grated carrot, mixed it up and just before pouring it into the cake tins discovered my error. They were very spiced cakes that week
What would you like your final meal to be?
Cheese glorious cheese with warm ciabatta and freshly picked figs
What is your secret talent [in or out of the kitchen]?
Not sure it’s a talent and I need more lessons but I love flying aerobatics
What did you eat for breakfast today?
Toasted sourdough with borage honey and crunchy peanut butter
What’s in your fridge?
A lot of Cheese, a few wines, spinach from my garden, pumpkin and coconut soup, freshly picked figs and charcuterie from an artisan producer I just discovered
Your inheritance recipes – the one you inherited [and from whom] and the one you’d like to pass on to your children
My granny’s Anzac biscuit recipe – Anzac Day is a very poignant day for New Zealanders and the biscuits serve as a constant reminder
Juliet Harbutt started the British Cheese Awards in 1994, celebrating their 25th birthday this year