A little about Alison & Simon Holst
Alison Holst grew up and was educated in Dunedin, graduating from the University of New Zealand, in 1959 with the degree of Bachelor of Home Science. After a postgraduate year at Teachers College, she lectured in the Foods Department at the School of Home Science, at the University of Otago and also taught evening classes for homemakers at the University’s Department of Home Science Extension.
Alison made her first national television cooking programme in 1965, a few months after the introduction of television to New Zealand, and published her first best- selling cookbook the year after this. Since this time she has published more than 75 popular cookbooks which have sold over 3 million copies, and is well known for her TV appearances, newspaper columns, magazine articles, radio broadcasts and cooking demonstrations.
Alison has travelled widely, studying the home cooking of other countries, promoting New Zealand’s high quality foods, and bringing home new ideas.
Her particular interest is EVERYDAY FOOD, encouraging home cooks to produce interesting, tasty, varied and nutritious meals without spending too much time or money. She endorses the Alison’s Pantry range of high quality bulk wholefoods, many Foodstuffs’ supermarkets throughout New Zealand, and enjoys introducing these foods to those unfamiliar with them.
In 1983 Alison received a Queen’s Service Medal for Services to the Community, in 1987 was made a CBE for Services to Home Science, and in 1997 was given a honorary Doctor of Science degree from the University of Otago.
Alison lives with her husband in Wellington, where she works with her son Simon. She tries to balance the many hours spent in her kitchen and at her computer, by travelling throughout New Zealand, talking, teaching and cooking in public, swapping food ideas with other home cooks, and raising much needed funds for many organisations and charities, particularly those benefiting children.
Her interests include family activities, especially with grandchildren, reading, walking, crafts, gardening, and overseas travel.
Having grown up in one of New Zealand’s best known “foodie” households, Simon has a passion for food and cooking! He has co-authored 27 best selling books with his mother Alison, and completed five of his own solo books. In addition to books, Simon contirbutes to newspapers and now AA Directions magazine.
In spite of a hectic lifestyle as a food writer and food stylist, Simon also tries to find time to help his wife with their two young children. He has also been a judge at the New Zealand Cheese Awards, and the Corbans Wine and Food Challenge.
Simon has also recently completed a Certificate of Wine, as well as being part way through a Diploma of Community Nutrition.