Mount Maunganui fine dining chef and now serious baker Nichola Jacobsen has a commitment to trying to do things better. "It's about going the extra mile and really trying to do something well," she says with a broad easy smile. "A good home cook can make a custard square, but we have taken it up a notch - we use our own pastry, our own mousseline cream (the classic French custard filling) and we don't ice it - so it's a rich and delicious treat, but also light." Her Elspeth Bakery opened mid-2018 and shares the space with Eddie's Café. Her bakery counter is teaming with people getting emotional over the flaky croissants, home-made jams, baked treats and superb French bread sticks.
The care and attention Nichola pours into her creations is evident - which produces stunning results. From a young age her love of baking from the Edmonds cook book got her started, which led her to a career as a fine dining chef, before starting up her bakery as a lifestyle change.
The Mustard Sauce for Corned Beef is Nichola's favourite. "I grew up with it and still can't find anything I'd rather have with corned beef. I don't modify it at all other than to reduce the sugar slightly and add some freshly chopped parsley. If I'm allowed two favourites, my other pick would be the Edmonds Peanut Brownies, a quality classic!"