Pascale Naessens best cookery books in the world
Pascale Naessens writes best cookery books in the world (full title)
As published in Het Nieuwsblad
There is no end to the success of Pascale Naessens (44). Every cookbook that the wife of Paul Jambers publishes is an instant bestseller. And yesterday in faraway Beijing she also won the prize for 'the best series of cookery books in the world'. She even beat top Monaco chef Alain Ducasse. Modest as she is, she hadn't even prepared a victory speech. 'I never imagined I would win against such big names.'
Piet Huysentruyt and Jeroen Meus were also in the running for awards in Beijing, but it was Pascale Naessens who walked away with the star prize. 'Not even in my wildest dreams did I ever think I would win,' said a delighted Pascale. 'Last year I won a Gourmand Award for the first Pure Enjoyment book. So I thought I had no chance this year to win the prize for the best series. Certainly not when you look at the competition. There were books here from all over the world. The final three were me, a Chinese series and Alain Ducasse. Alain is not only a great cook [20 restaurants with a total of 19 Michelin stars, ed.], but also a very good writer. Do you blame me for not having high expectations? I was already pleased to be in the final three. And then they call out your name and you have to go up on stage. What an honor! And it gives me great pride and satisfaction as well, because I put so much time and effort into my books. For me, writing has become a passion.'
Book number five in the pipeline
The next step was an international breakthrough. Pascale was not only in Beijing to receive her award, but also to make her books more widely known around the world. 'We are working hard to get our foot in the door abroad. We even had one of the cookbooks translated into Chinese, so that the Chinese publishers could see exactly what we do. And yes, there is some interest. But it is still very difficult to launch a book onto the international market from Flanders. But we want to give it a shot and will do our very best to make it succeed. I wouldn't want to look back in a few years time and think that we failed because we didn't try hard enough.'
But her enthusiasm for her foreign adventure does not mean that she has lost sight of Belgium. She is only staying one more day in Beijing and then she is flying home to complete work on her fifth book, Pure Food That Makes You Happy.
* For full article, see attached PDF file (in Dutch).