Laurey was born May 14, 1954, and grew up in Goshen, Vermont, the youngest daughter of Elsie and John Masterton, founders of the original Blueberry Hill Farm and authors of The Blueberry Hill Cookbooks.
Following her early years in New York, where she worked as a lighting designer off and on Broadway, Laurey visited Asheville for the first time in 1984 to take a course with the North Carolina Outward Bound School. In 1987 she moved to Asheville to work with that school and also started cooking in her tiny walk-up apartment.
Laurey started cooking on Biltmore Avenue in 1990, first alone and then with a regular bevy of cooks, shopsters, office mavens and delivery folks. This staff of “talented and interesting individuals” made wonderful food, with fresh, local products and kept life interesting with music, dancing, art, sport, and general hilarity.
It was at this time that she founded Laurey’s, a café and catering company serving “Gourmet Comfort Food” in Asheville. An active member of the Asheville community, she supported local farm-to-table initiatives, focusing particularly on helping children experience gardening, and the cooking and eating of real food.
Laurey was also a practicing beekeeper, a hobby glassblower, and a long distance bike rider. She believed in the power of service to others and in being an active member of her community. Her passion was enlisting a chef to work with each of the 30 elementary schools in the Asheville area as a part of Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move, a project to eliminate childhood obesity by 2015. Laurey served on the board of the national organization of Women Chefs and Restaurateurs, and was a national spokesperson for the National Honey Board.
An energetic long-distance bike rider, she rode with joy, and raised tens of thousands of dollars in support of cancer awareness. Battling cancer three times, Laurey was a LiveSTRONG Leader with the LiveSTRONG Foundation.
Laurey was also the author of Elsie’s Biscuits, simple stories of me, my mother, and food and The Fresh Honey Cookbook; 84 Recipes from a Beekeeper's Kitchen. Order your copies in our shop!