“Why are all these people here??”

December 13, 2022  Chef Austin Avatar

The last few weeks since Dinner hit the stores in Australia has been a whirlwind. Here’s what’s been happening!

(And here’s my ongoing full Australian book-tour schedule here.)

At the Kinokuniya bookstore book talk and signing event

“Why are all these people here?” my mother asked me, baffled, genuinely confused as she peeked out from backstage at an audience of 400.

“Well, I think they’re here for me…..?” I said, uncertainly, just as confused.

“You mean they PAID to come and hear you talk? I don’t understand. YOU?” she said, brows furrowed in total disbelief.

I wish I had captured that conversation on camera!! Because it’s funny – if anyone else had said it, it would be deemed downright insulting 😂 – and also because it perfectly captures my bewilderment as we pound the pavement for the cookbook publicity tour in Australia.

At the Dymocks cocktail party / book talk that took place on Wednesday 28th October 2022.

You see, this office-gal turned food blogger has been hiding behind a keyboard all these years. Being in front of a camera is definitely not my comfort zone. I have no desire to be “famous” (whatever that means these days!), to be recognised in public, to be on TV or in glossy magazines.

But on the other hand, the nervousness of public speaking is immediately forgotten when I see the first friendly face. The moment someone says hi and we start chatting food, BOOM! It’s like – well, it IS – chatting to a friend. It’s fun! It’s the best part, meeting so many wonderful people, having a laugh and hearing stories.

And there’s no better way for me to share with you what it’s been like than to show you. Welcome to the RecipeTin Cookbook Tour Home Movies!

Cookbook Tour Home Video!

Tap left side of video to rewind, right side to skip ahead. Click unmute button for sound.

Here’s a list of the events featured in my little home video:

  • Visiting Warringah Mall, my closest mall, on book release day to see my cookbook for sale in stores!

  • Kinokuniya book talk and signing that took place in the city, Dozer and my first public event!

  • Big W book signing – a public event that anyone could attend. I was so worried about people not turning up that I brought cookies and brownies to entice people! That, plus Dozer, worked. I was determined to stay until I met the last person in the queue. It took about 5 1/2 hours!

  • Cocktail party at Dymocks bookstore in Sydney city – Catered by my team (with a tiny little bit of help from me 😂). There were bubbles and nibbles and Dozer, chatting and book signing. It was fabulous fun! (Other than blowing the power in the store when we plugged in 3 deep fryers we brought in to cook arancini balls and spring rolls!!)

In addition to the above, I’ve been doing some little impromptu signings at some independent book stores across Sydney, both during the week and on weekends. I do like these small signings – more time to chat!!


Yes, Dozer has been on TV. Check that off his my bucket list!! 😂

Here he is with me on Studio 10 (a morning show on Channel 10) for a cooking demo, where I did the 12 hour lamb shoulder. (Watch it online here, or here on Facebook!)

Not even I have a chef hat…. how did Dozer manage to score one??

And here I am on Sunrise, another breakfast show on Channel 7 (watch it online here, or here on Facebook). Dozer wasn’t invited to this one – too complicated. He definitely does add an element of complexity to things he attends!!! 😂

For Sunrise, I did a demo of the Korean BBQ Beef Ribs, a cookbook exclusive recipe. Let’s just say it was quite a hit with the crew…. apparently most cooking guests do no-cook things like salads. Me, I insisted on making something statement!!!

Korean Beef Short Ribs by Nagi Maehashi "Dinner" cookbook RecipeTin Eats


I can’t quite describe how I felt when I opened up the Sydney Morning Herald to be greeted with this on the cover of the Good Food lift out a couple of weeks ago:

Errrr…. hmm. Never thought something like this would happen to me!!!!

Here are links to some of the online version of articles, in case you’re interested. I really like how they tell my story of how this website and my cookbook came to be!

Photo from The Design Files article…. in PJ’s. SERIOUSLY!

The cover of the STM Magazine

Don’t worry. My people are keeping my ego in check.

With all these flattering things the media are saying about me, I know you must be rather concerned about how big my head is growing…… Ha ha ha!!!

But never fear. My people – my team and my family – have always and will always do an excellent job to keep my head from getting too big. Case in point – the conversation with my mother at the top of this post. Ruthless! 😂

A photo of my mother and I in the Good Food article. Everybody is convinced my graduation photo will be coming down, to be replaced with this.😂

As for sales…..?

I thought long and hard about whether to go public with how the book sales are going since it hit the shelves on 11 October 2022. On one hand, it feels boastful (spoiler alert) and is irrelevant to anyone without a vested or commercial interest in Dinner.

But on the other hand, I feel like you’ve been with me on this journey since the day I shared that I had decided to do a cookbook. And not telling you feels like leaving out a chunk of the story.

So I decided to share.

According to my publisher, Dinner is:

  • The fastest selling cookbook on record in Australian history

  • The fastest selling book in Australian history for a debut author (ie all types of books)

  • The biggest first week release of 2022

I’ve read these words in emails and heard them said to me. But that is the first time I’ve written those words myself and I think the significance just hit me. I’m a little overwhelmed and still trying to digest it.

Thank you, everyone. I couldn’t have done it without you. – Nagi x

PS In case you are wondering, I can’t share actual sales numbers because of confidentiality reasons but they are recorded in a subscription service used by the publishing industry called Nelson BookScan. As for international, pre-orders are available in the US and Canada but official numbers don’t get released until the book hits the stores. UK to be announced soon!

Me at Berkelouw books in Mona Vale, my local bookstore.

Life of Dozer

You want it? Just slobber on it.

Tap left side of video to rewind, right side to skip ahead. Click unmute button for sound.

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