A Food & Travel Blog

Win an Australia Post Legends of Cooking Gift Pack

03/02/2014 | By

For a brief period in my childhood,and with the encouragement of my mother, I collected stamps. I’m not sure if children still do that these days and I know mine certainly have shown no interest in philately at all, but it kept me quiet and was a cheap hobby as family and friends were happy to save their stamps for me. As you can imagine, it wasn’t a particularly exciting collection as Australian stamps back then mostly just had a picture of the queen on them. Well, like so much in modern culture, stamp collecting has been “sexed up”, the queen has been ditched and Australia Post now looks to Australian legends to grace our mail.

Back in 1997 Australia Post initiated the Australian Legend Award stamp releases to honour “living Australians who have made a unique contribution to our way of life”, giving the very first award to (then living) the much-loved cricket legend Sir Donald Bradman. Since then there have been Australians from all walks of life honoured in this way and stamp collectors today enjoy images of such diverse Australians as fashion designer Prue Acton, music legend Molly Meldrum, footballer Gary Ablett and author Thomas Kenneally. This year Australia Post has chosen to highlight the legends of our culinary scene with the Legends of Cooking series.

Recognising the influence each of these special people have had over Australia’s food culture and the visionary role they have played in shaping Australia’s palate, Australia Post has chosen the culinary greats Margaret Fulton OAM, Maggie Beer AM, Stephanie Alexander OAM, Neil Perry AM and Kylie Kwong. These five legends were chosen by an industry selection panel and have each played a distinct role in the emergence of the sophisticated Australian food culture enjoyed by many of us today. According to Ahmed Fahour, Managing Director & CEO, Australia Post, “These five individuals have taught Australians to appreciate our abundant fresh ingredients and to embrace the flavours of multiculturalism, they are not just cooks, but business-minded authors, teachers, TV personalities and restaurateurs. For this, they truly deserve the title Australian Legend.”

In recognition of the achievements of Margaret Fulton, Maggie Beer, Stephanie Alexander, Neil Perry and Kylie Kwong and to share to love around a little, Australia Post has put together gift packs which include not only a full set of the stamps, but also the Legends of Cooking prestige book, the complete set of 5 maxi cards (postcards) and first day covers (collector’s item) and have graciously given me 10 of these to share with my readers.

If you want to get your hands on one of these great packs and begin your own stamp collection with a limited release item all I ask is that you leave a comment below telling us all just how these culinary inspirations have influenced your own time in the kitchen. Did Margaret Fulton set you down the path of good, home cooking all those years ago, has Maggie encouraged you to be a little less inflexible with a recipe, has Stephanie kept you sitting at the table poring over her magnificent tome, did Kylie help you master a new cuisine or did Neil just prompt you to tie your hair back ( 😉 )? We want to know it all!

I’ll accept comments from today until 12 noon (CST) Friday 14 February. I will draw the lucky winners at random and will notify them by email. If I don’t receive a return email from any winner within 48 hours, that prize will be redrawn. I have 10 (ten) prize packs to give away, but unfortunately must limit entry to Australian residents only.


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  1. fiona mckenzie

    Margaret Fulton, the first cookbook I ever purchased and my first port of call if I have a cooking questions

  2. Allan Hutchinson

    Maggie Beer showed us how good local produce is and should be used in everday cooking as much as possibld!

  3. Lizzy (Good Things)

    Such a great tribute to some of our culinary legends, Amanda! I was really chuffed when I first read about this.

  4. Fiona

    Love Kylie Kwong – her recipes are so alive with flavours from her heritage!

  5. Hotly Spiced

    I used to love the mail arriving in the letter box and seeing where it had come from (we had a lot of OS friends/family). I loved to collect the foreign stamps and the ones from the UK were my favourite. I don’t know what happened to my stamp collection but like yours, it wasn’t very good. Nothing much arrives in the mail any more and I think it’s a shame. I think Margaret Fulton is the one who influenced me the most because she was on TV through all my teen years telling us all about Leggos! I was given one of her cookbooks as a wedding present and used it to help me get through dinner parties! xx

  6. Jen

    My mum was a meat and 3 veg cook so once I left home I turned to these wonderful icons for inspiration. They have expanded my horizons and my aim is to never cook meat & 3 veg, ever!

  7. Kate

    Without Margaret Fulton’s guidance I would never have made mu first cake !! She is our household icon !!

  8. Effie Bakkalis

    After visiting Maggie Beer’s Farm Shop in the Barossa Valley, I have become more creative and inventive with my cooking. The range of jams and sauces with unexpected mixed ingredients was a real eye-opener!
    I also love Kylie Kwong as she has helped me introduce Asian food into my household, with simple recipes that can be tailored to suit both the adults and children.

  9. InTolerant Chef

    Neil Perry and Kylie Kwong have certainly inspired me to try new techniques and ingredients- but I feel each and every one of these guys deserves to be in there for sure!

  10. Maureen | Orgasmic Chef

    I got my first Margaret Fulton cookbook yesterday but she’s a real legend. I’ve been in love with Maggie Beer since I first set foot in Australia. She’s real, she’s hopeful when turning a dish out just like I am and she followed her dream and watched it come true. Amen.

  11. Suzie Elovalis

    Kylie Kwong can do no wrong in my books, her recipes are easy to follow and are short and sweet.

  12. John

    Combination of Maggie and Kylie. Maggie has helped inspire my creativity in the kitchen, helping me to believe in my own skills and giving myself the freedom to veer away from a rigid recipe. I have made some fantastic meals ( and one or two not so memorable ones – but that is all part of growing as a cook.) Kylie Kwong has opened my eyes to how easy great tasting Asian food can be. Two of my personal favorite people and have equally inspired me to grow as a cook.

  13. Angela McCue

    I have cookbooks from everyone of these legends, with the exception of Neil Perry. I don’t think you are Australian if you don’t know and love Margaret, Maggie or Stephanie.

  14. Michelle B

    I have loved Maggie Beer’s excitement with verjuice and have learned to love using it myself! Stephanie Alexander is just an all around inspiration and I love her work cooking with kids – so great 🙂 Neil Perry has made me want to try some of the more ‘gourmet’ recipes and given me some confidence. Love them all!!

  15. Birgitta Norberg

    Margaret Fulton was the one who taught me how to make a Pavlova. It’s a favourite that has have become part of our Christmas tradition and it’s much loved by family and friends.

  16. Cathy Boyd

    Kylie Kwong has always been an inspiration, especially in the days when I was working with Bill Granger at Bills2 when Kylie and Bill were setting up Billy Kwong’s. She always gave the impression of being strict but was a very good mentor as she loves everything being wholesome, fresh and as organic as possible which I have come away with in teaching my own children. One of my dreams is to meet Maggie Beer and just give her a hug. She’s so motherly.

  17. Jennifer B.

    Stephanie Alexander, via her epic encyclopedia, has shown me that great food can extend from the simplest stews to grand dishes made from exotic produce. I aim to do the same over the course of each week.

  18. Brian Boyce

    Kylie Kwong: Her easy to follow and succeed recipes have opened up Asian modern cuisine to my family’s table and we are so happy to be able to appreciate this wonderful approach to cooking. Thank You.

  19. Jess

    Maggie beer has inspired me to get back to basics with more homegrown and organic produce. What i cant grown myself i make or use organic locally. The most basic ingredients are humble when they are true quality.

  20. Tracey Johnson

    Margaret Fultons book was one of my first cookbooks and I still use it 30 years on and Mums was passed down to my daughter. Certainly standing the test of time. Maggie Beer inspires all

  21. Karlene

    Neil Perry’s cooking show on Lifestyle Food is so watchable, and he creates fabulous fresh recipes in not time at all.

  22. Jasmine

    I love Margaret Fulton. She’s been such an inspiration. Thanks to Margaret, I’ve learnt to cook all on my own

  23. Alice

    The first three cookbooks I owned were Margaret Fulton. Although my major inspiration comes from my mother and her mother (who is very talented with Austrian cuisine) now, it did take courage and time to get to that point, when I first left home Margaret was my best friend. She was also my go to gift for my friends who were, lets say, lacking in the kitchen! Margaret, as with all of these wonderful chefs/cooks should be staples in everyone’s cookbook shelf. What a wonderful topic for an Australia Post stamp series.

  24. Karen Marken

    Maggie Beer has encouraged me to eat more of her delicious icecream and my husband to eat more of her delicious pate.

  25. Kathy K

    Maggie Beer is my kitchen inspiration – her products are in my pantry, fridge and freezer and her cookbooks are the most thumbed through on my bookshelf!

  26. Barbara

    I grew up with Margaret Fulton. She’s the only ‘help’ I need in the kitchen

  27. Emily

    I’m still just learning… I think we all are until we are legends too!

  28. Mel Phillips

    Maggie Beer is such a darling! Have watched her on Masterchef from time to time and simply love her style of cooking! Picked up a few tips about cooking roast chicken (covering the breast with foil to start with to keep it moist and adding water to the bottom of the tray to help it retain moisture) from her on TV and have done these things ever since! You might think they are small tips, but I tell you what, they made a marked improvement on my chook!!

  29. judi adams

    As a devoted foodie, all these iconic Legends of gastronomy, are idols for me, I would love to add to my library, while celebrating their awesome cookery.

  30. Caroline Kelly

    The first recipe book that I ever got my hands on was from my mother’s bookshelf and Margaret Fulton was the author. Over the years, her no fuss easy to comprehend and replicate recipes have become an inspiration in my own household.

  31. karina l

    They have influenced me to get a little creative and stop cooking boring asian stir fries!

  32. Sonya

    I love Kylie Kwong’s recipes – I wish I could cook Asian meals the way she can!

  33. Jules N

    Great prize – Maggie Beer has always inspired me in the kitchen and has saved me so much time when making desserts – her recipes never fail.

  34. Donna Dwyer

    I’m inspired by all of them, but Maggie Beer is just so endearing with her passion for produce and her willingness to learn new things and to teach others what she has learnt.

  35. Soni Nicole

    I have Stephanie’s book and it’s great but I just like to look at it and turn the pages – I’ve never actually ever tackled any of her recipes, because I usually don’t have all the ingredients her recipes require.

  36. Deb

    Margaret Fulton – my husband bought me her cookbook when we married in 1978 – it was a dream come true for me, because I’d never cooked!

  37. Gayle Richardson

    Stephanie Alexander has inspired me to grow my own produce which in turn encourages me to cook. My daughter loves helping me pick the items we need for dinner and then eat them!

  38. Nicole W

    My family and friends call me the “Dessert Queen 2” after Margaret Fulton…I did learn how to make the meanest pavlova there is from my idol back in the 80’s!

  39. Anne Green

    All these remarkable cooks have influenced me in various ways. Probably Margaret Fulton (whose dog-eared, food stained recipes book still adorns my shelf) stands out, because like many of your readers, she was the first one I read!

  40. Diana O

    Margaret Fulton the cook of all cooks, the lady who knows her way around a kitchen and how to please hungry tummies and the fussiest of eaters. Her recipes all tried and tested, having stood the test of time. I’ve got one of Mum’s old Margaret Fulton cookbooks from the 1970’s, and I still refer to it at least twice a week…….yes it’s falling apart, but it’s the one cookbook I’ll never part with.

  41. Peter Gerard

    All of these Wonderful Food creator’s/Chef’s have influenced my interest in creating the best in Food.

  42. Carolyn King

    I must admit I’m not the greatest cook, but I do try a lot of recipes from my Margaret Fulton Cookbook. I guess I’m more of a food taster.

  43. Narelle Rock

    Maggie Beer has helped me really indulge in the home made meals for my family, hearty, warming and filling dishes that are quick and easy to make and use the freshest of ingredients from our Australian growers.

  44. lara Daebritz

    Maggie has not only helped me in the kitchen with her wholesome family recipes, but she has made me try new things I would not normally eat, let alone cook (ie. pate).

  45. Mrs B

    My mother only cooked Margaret Fulton recipes, and I learnt from her cookbooks too. I now put my skills in the kitchen to good use and thank Margaret for getting me there

  46. Judith Fasshauer

    Margaret Fulton inspiration on my house to cook and bake , is like a tradition

  47. Melissa Keane

    I was given a copy of the Cook’s Companion by Stephanie Alexander for my 30th birthday by some dear friends. I still use it every week to find inspiration for seasonal veggies. It was the first book that gave me confidence to buy whatever veggies were in season and then find a new way to enjoy them, rather than find a recipe first and then hunt down the produce. Buying fruit and veggies in season was a revelation to me, and I’m sure this book lead me to the business I now run.

  48. Mel @ The cook's notebook

    Oh I love them all, and I also was a stamp collector in my childhood. I love Stephanie’s the Cook’s Companion, but I find I’m turning more to Kylie Kwong’s beautiful books these days as I seek more of an Asian influence in my cooking. I also love Maggie and was so incredibly thrilled to meet her a few years ago.

  49. Amanda McInerney

    Big congratulations to Mel (The Cooks Notebook), Mrs. B, Narelle Rock, Angela McCue, Brian Boyce, Suzie Elovalis, Donna Dwyer, Jules N., Jasmine & Kathy K. – you are the winners!
    Please email me your full postal details within the next 48 hours and your prizes will be in the post!

  50. Narelle Rock

    Thanks so much, have emailed you! congratulations to all the winners xx