Fabulous food for our final days

A ‘world-first’ cookbook for people with life limiting illness or facing the end of life was inspired by a chef’s dying request for lobster as his ‘last meal’.

Lobster for Josino: Fabulous food for our final days features practical advice and more than 100 innovative recipes (including molecular gastronomy) that promote beautiful food and personal choice for people who may have only a short time to live. 

Lobster for Josino was a very personal project for Dementia Centre author and chef Peter Morgan-Jones.

“I worked with Josino at the Sydney Opera House and some years later his wife contacted me to say he was dying, and had asked to see me and another former colleague,” Peter said.

“During our visit at a Sydney hospital, Josino’s lunch arrived and his shoulders dropped as he lifted the plastic lid. He told me he couldn’t eat it and wished he could choose his own meals. I asked him what he wanted and he gave me a cheeky grin and said, ‘Lobster Peter.’

“I went to the Sydney Fish Markets and sourced a lobster but hospital staff would not agree to me preparing him a lobster meal. I returned a couple of days later and Josino was unconscious and sadly, never recovered, and never got his lobster.”

Revolutionising the approach to food

Peter describes this as a watershed moment in his illustrious restaurant career and in part inspired him to redirect his work towards revolutionising the approach to food for vulnerable people such as those living with dementia and, now, those who are in palliative care. Some of the revolutionising recipes include gin and tonic lollipops sometimes recommended by speech pathologists for people who cannot eat and drink at all (please consult a speech pathologist before giving this to someone with swallowing difficulties)

Gin and tonic lollipops 500

In her foreword to the book, Australian food icon Maggie Beer says: “I have loved all of Peter’s work. He has challenged the status quo for food for dementia residents in aged care and now he tackles an incredibly complex and emotional subject—food for the last stages of life. Food should always give pleasure and comfort no matter the stage of life.”

Lobster for Josino uses a range of innovation from molecular ‘Guinness air’ to dehydrated fruit, Scotch mouth swabs to Christmas pudding mist and of course the lobster dish that anyone can enjoy – all to ensure no one misses out on their favourite food and drink. 

Peter's co-authors are leading palliative care specialist, Prof Rod MacLeod along with speech pathologist Prudence Ellis and dietitian Jessica Lynch.

Purchase Lobster for Josino here