Scott Hill in the kitchen garden at Vaucluse House. Photo © James Horan
Pull up a seat!
I first joined the HHT as a guide at Elizabeth Bay House and Vaucluse House – once home to rival colonial families – which between them boast sprawling cellars, a rare surviving colonial kitchen and service rooms. A decade later, I’m the Curator for Meroogal, Elizabeth Farm and Rouse Hill House & Farm, three remarkable properties with their own distinct stories and collections.
Jacqui Newling in the kitchen at Vaucluse House. Photo © James Horan
I’m a gastronomer. My computer spellchecker tells me this is not a word (the Macquarie Dictionary, however, does!) – but as a philosopher takes their title from the pursuit of philosophy, I believe gastronomer follows the same logic from gastronomy. By my family’s reckoning, however, I’m a gastronaut. I explore the world of food with an inquiring mind and a deep curiosity – not simply about the food itself, but about why it is a food. How did that item become acceptable as a food and how did it arrive at our tables? In fact, to me, gastronomy is about people – what people do to and with food to make it a part of their lives.
The Cook and the Curator blog invites you to discover our food heritage at the Historic Houses Trust. You will enter our homes, raid our pantries, fire up our stoves, cook in our kitchens, try out our recipes and dine at our tables.