Food of the Southern Forests by Sophie Zalokar »

Of Foragers Field Kitchen and Cooking School in Pemberton

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Food of the Southern Forest by Sophie Zalokar

Food of the Southern Forest by Sophie Zalokar


In Food of the Southern Forests, Chef extraordinaire Sophie Zalokar (from the popular Foragers Field Kitchen and Cooking School in Pemberton) takes us on a charming journey into the food and people of this special region.

“This book aims to introduce you to some of the produce grown in this unique place, the people who grow it and a little of the wonderful migrant food heritage, together with recipes I’ve developed that are examples of how this produce can be prepared and enjoyed”. – Sophie Zalokar.

The seasonal produce from this diverse and abundant region offers surprising creations:

  • Kale and ricotta wraps served beside a wattleseed za’atar.
  • Mulled blueberries with elderflower fritters and sweet labna.
  • Foraged Wild mushrooms with toasted grains and quark.
  • Fingerlimes garnishing marron and avocado.
  • Salted caramel butter on a macadamia & dried pear loaf.

The agricultural land of the Southern Forests is just 15% of the whole 7000 square kilometre area. The farm gates exist between majestic wilderness, national parks, state forests and reserves.

Sophie Zaloker – who has been running the legendary Foragers Field Kitchen since 2011 – says of the area, “It’ s best described as hours and hours of spectacular scenic driving, the best which can be experienced year round off the sealed roads, guided by local knowledge. It’ s an extraordinarily beautiful place. The majestic native karri forests, with trees amongst the tallest in the world, scrape abundant skies and edge lush pastures, orchards and vineyards while deep through the valleys serene waterways roll with a primal rhythm and descend towards and ancient and wild coastal rim."

The Southern Forests has 10,000 locals and is developing speciality agricultural areas:

  • Manjimup is known for its cherries, apples and now truffles.
  • Pemberton has marron, trout and avocadoes.
  • Northcliffe does milk and cream.
  • Walpole has become the great southern beef capital.

This book is a must for anyone interested in eating fresh, local and sustainable produce, as well as an inspiration for the creative, forward-thinking cook.

‘Chef and food lover, Sophie Zalokar includes original recipes that are absolutely mouth-watering.’ – Stephanie Alexander

Sophie has a natural feel for food, and here she shows her love of the region, the richness of the producers and her innate creativity using the produce at hand.’ – Maggie Beer

‘Absolutely delicious recipies and respectful stories told with wisdom and care by the inspiring Sophie Zalokar.’ – Kylie Kwong


About Sophie Zalokar and Foragers


Foragers is a farm-based cooking school and dining room with self-contained accommodation located in the Southern Forests region, 6km south of Pemberton.

Sophie Zalokar and her partner Chris (originally from Switzerland) moved from Fremantle to the nineteen-acre property previously called Pemberton Breakaway Cottages, with their two children in 2005. Pemberton greatly appealed to them for its unaffected, stunning natural environment, wine, variety of fresh produce and small country community. Over the next 5 years they built new accommodation, planted a productive kitchen garden, started a learning curve with farm animals and crafted a forty-seat dining room with a large commercial kitchen; relaunching as Foragers in March 2011.

Throughout these early experiences they met wonderful locals and made valuable relationships with producers and other like-minded people that now play an integral role at Foragers.

Sophie’s originally from the Barossa Valley in South Australia where she qualified as a chef at the Pheasant Farm Restaurant with Australian food icon Maggie Beer. She then cooked her around the world before heading back to Fremantle with Chris in 1991.

She continued to work as a chef, undertook a visual arts degree and started writing, teaching and consulting on food. Fremantle Press published her first book PicNic – Outdoor Feasts in the Australian Landscape in 2002. This was shortlisted for the Jacob’s Creek World Food Media Awards and Vittoria Australian Food Media Awards.


  • South West WA (WA)

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May 27th, 2015
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