2/20/2013 03:22:00 PM

Pre-SoBe 2013: 4 Questions For Nigella Lawson

Photo by Hugo Burnand
Domestic goddess Nigella Lawson is a food TV and cookbook maven and most recently, a judge on ABC's The Taste. She'll be down at the SoBe Wine & Food Fest briefly this weekend for her Nigellissima event with The Dutch chef Andrew Carmellini, preparing dishes from her cookbook of the same name inspired by her time as a chambermaid in Italy. We caught up with the busy Brit just long enough to chat about the event, The Taste and the one Italian ingredient we can't stand. Check it out below.

Zagat: Tell us about your Nigellisima event with Andrew Carmellini - are you an admirer of his cooking?
NL: I am a huge admirer of his food.  I’ve eaten with gusto at The Dutch and Locanda Verde and love American Flavor. I'd say that palate-wise, he has perfect pitch.

Zagat: You've often decreed yourself as "not a professional" or "expert" in anything, what is it like to be viewed as an expert in taste on your new show (for all intents and purposes)?
NL: Well, we are all experts in taste in terms of our own palates, and of course taste is subjective. Having said that, although I have no training in food (and believe expertise to be not what food is about or human beings would have fallen out of the evolutionary loop millennia ago) it is fair to say I have made eating my life's work!

Zagat: What's next for you - what projects do you have on the horizon?
NL: I have never planned anything, and cannot start now. I have a few projects simmering on the back burner but have no idea, until something springs forth, which ones I will develop and which ones I will leave until they prove themselves ready. That is the joy of my work: spontaneity is of the essence - rather like cooking itself. 

Zagat: Is there one Italian dish that you just can't stand?
NL: Oh dear, no. But then - green bell peppers aside - there is no foodstuff I reject. 

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