Jess' Underground Kitchen started around my kitchen table. A friend was devouring one of my weeknight dinners and made a flippant comment: “I’d love to pay you to cook my meals during the week.” It seemed like an interesting challenge!
We’ve come a long way since JUK’s first Thai green chicken curry back in February 2013, when customers used to pick up from the pink house in Ponsonby. It grew organically, by word of mouth... a delicious secret club.
It didn’t take long to realise that there was a gap in the market for freshly cooked, healthy convenience food. I never set out to fill it; I was just cooking the food I’d always cooked.
My week night dinners, but for hundreds instead of one.
Today, it’s more of an overground kitchen! My first cookbook, My Underground Kitchen, was published in April 2015, and contains over 80 mouthwatering recipes for home cooks - including many of the meals that feature on the Underground Kitchen menu. My second cookbook, My Underground Deli, hit bookshelves in April 2017 and showcases 100 of our favourite recipes from the JUK delis.
In February 2016 I opened the doors to my flagship store - JUK Herne Bay. We serve up home cooking at its best - ready-to-heat meals, baking, seasonal salads and cabinet food, artisan deli goods and, of course, good coffee. Drop in and say hello!
We've also recently opened our second deli - JUK Remuera. On the corner of Bassett Road & Remuera Road, our light & breezy space is full of more Jess deliciousness and the home of our production kitchen.
What do guests remember most the day after? How good the food was!
From weddings and birthdays to corporate functions and office events, we’ll work with you to create a custom menu packed with flavour that will set your special event apart from the rest.
Goats’ cheese & honeycomb filo cigars
Where to even START when it comes to wedding catering?!
Roasted mushroom soup
Treating your Mum this Mother's Day
'Tis the season for feijoas!