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The Greatest Living Food Writer Makes a TV Series

Discussion in 'Cookery' started by nick909, Jun 19, 2011.

  1. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    Well...he is in my opinion, anyway! [​IMG]
    And a new book as well. My palms are sweaty in anticipation, although I'm oddly nervous about the programme!
    Love him, love his food, love his writing. I've read both of the Roast Chicken books countless times and also Week In Week Out. The others are constantly being dipped into as well. I'd say thaty along with Elizabeth David, his are the books I take to bed most frequently. It's his warmth, humour and dislike of food fashions and pretentiousness I like most. And the fact that he has the ability to make me drool at the drop of a hat!
    Anyway - feature on him here in today's Observer Food Monthly
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2011/jun/19/simon-hopkinson-good-cook-interview
     
  2. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    Well...he is in my opinion, anyway! [​IMG]
    And a new book as well. My palms are sweaty in anticipation, although I'm oddly nervous about the programme!
    Love him, love his food, love his writing. I've read both of the Roast Chicken books countless times and also Week In Week Out. The others are constantly being dipped into as well. I'd say thaty along with Elizabeth David, his are the books I take to bed most frequently. It's his warmth, humour and dislike of food fashions and pretentiousness I like most. And the fact that he has the ability to make me drool at the drop of a hat!
    Anyway - feature on him here in today's Observer Food Monthly
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2011/jun/19/simon-hopkinson-good-cook-interview
     
  3. When is the programme on? I read the article and can't remember. He does sound like a refreshing change from some of the usual tv chef fodder who seem to have sold themselves to a tv career. I used to rate Gordon Ramsay when the F Word first started but I can't stand him now. So back to your man, I'm looking forward to watching his programme.
     
  4. modelmaker

    modelmaker Occasional commenter

    Well, I'll always look forward to something new on the telly about food. You mentioned Elizabeth David and all the worthwhile food programmes have as well. I'm surprised that nobody has thoughtof doing a series about her and what inspired her books.
    Maybe they did and I missed it, but if they did, whty isn't it being repeated?
    But how about you, nick. Do you think your anywhere close to reading the zenith of cookery writing yet, or are there still leagues we still have to travel? Is there a Holy Grail recipe we've yet to find at the end of the rainbow?

     
  5. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    He's a million miles away from Ramsay and the egotistical chefs that often do the rounds. Far more about the food than him. And even though he has worked as a chef, he is foremost a cook - so it's home cooking he does (although it can tend to the adventurous and labour intensive at times - something to spend time over!).
    Doesn't start til early July, Suze, but if you fancy buying a cookbook, but Roast Chicken and Other Stories - you can get cheap 2nd hand copies on Amazon Marketplace. It's wonderful and a perfect introduction to Hopkinson.
     
  6. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    A programme about David would be a great idea! I propose Stein should do it. Have you read any of her books, MM? I suggest French Provincial Cooking - it has lots of anecdotal bits about her inspiration growing up on stays with a French family.
    My favourite food writers don't just write a series of recipes. They really write about the food and about dining evperiences and the ingredients - Hopkinson does this, as did David and Floyd, as does Slater, Stein and Roden. Hopkinson is rarely about new recipes (in fact I'm not sure how many new recipes there actually are - probably none: just little known ones); most of his are traditional English or French, but is instead all about perfecting them and thinking about simplicity of ingredients.
    I wouldn't make an effort to write myself, as not only do I not write well enough; I'm also something of a nobody! I do think some grounding in the art, either as someone who's cooked for a lifetime and has researched and travelled well with it, or someone with a professional background, is necessary. I frequently wonder "who the hell is that??" when some new young TV chef is thrust upon us (most recently that Lorraine woman on the baking programme - although it turns out she is an acclaimed pastry chef).
    Anyway, we all know who the real talent is with regards to food writing on the forum: our very own Bethannie!

     
  7. This reminds me somewhat of Nigel Slater who I love watching and reading about. I'll definitely have a look at Amazon Marketplace - thanks for the tip [​IMG]
     
  8. How exciting, based on your recommendation, nick, I've ordered myself a copy from Amazon. Only £7.84 for a brand new copy! I can't wait to get it now. Thanks!
     
  9. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    Hah! Hope you like it...feeling oddly nervous about having raved about it now...[​IMG]
     
  10. modelmaker

    modelmaker Occasional commenter

    They are mine too, nick. To be honest, I don't read many of the cookbooks I have anymore as it's easier these days to refresh my memory on the ingredients for a recipe or search for ideas online. The thing writers, cook books, cookery programes and websites often don't get across is the enjoyment and anticipation of food, be it sourcing ingredients, cooking it or eating it. Why you would want to take the trouble to cook something that stretches your skill levels and so on.
    Somewhere I have a paperback that describes a food journey through Languedoc and Provence. There's about 5 recipes in it and I haven't tried a single one yet it had me hankering to do something that made me make the food I cook to be the best I could achieve with what I have or can afford.
    A variety of thoughts came into my head before I began this post, and as it's late and I've the luxury of drinking the wine quota by myself this evening as my sweetheart is visiting our daughter and grandchildren in Switzerland this week, I anticipate I might ramble a bit and find my typing becomes slurred when I re-read it tomorrow.
    Firstly, I'd love to understand how programmes about food became so popular. Obviously ratings encourage them to continue, but they cost money to make. At some point in time, an individual came to the conclusion it would be a good idea to make a programme telling people how to cook and had to get the idea past the powers that be to have it aired.
    The same is true, of course, about ancient recipe books.
    I'd love to watch a series or read a book about the history the influece media has had on the things we eat.
    I'd love to see programmes that took on the challenge of making decent meals from food you can get from the corner shop and if you can't get any decent ingredients there, how to convince the corner shop owner and local community to change it around.
    I'd love to see programmes about food failures that show why they became failures.
    Virtually every food website I visit takes an interminable amount of time to load compared to others. Why is this. I know myself but ask the question why does it occur? Do the website owners want people to visit and re-visit or not?
    Yep, as I predicted I'm rambling so I'll stop for the time being.
    A final comment though, something turns foodies into foodies instead of sustinance consumers. What do you think this magic factor is?




     
  11. anon468

    anon468 New commenter

    MM, not quite what you're after, but in 2006 the BBC did a one off dramatisation of Elizabeth David's life, which was truly excellent (but rather sad).
    It starred Catherine McCormack as David and she was mesmerising. I'm sure the Beeb will repeat it again in time.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0074t02
    The authorised biography (by Artemis Cooper) is also excellent and well worth reading.
     
  12. egyptgirl

    egyptgirl Senior commenter

    Passion.
     
  13. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    I'd add to that:
    Obsession, a love for life, a love of sharing, a love of learning, creativity, perfectionism...and unbridled but discriminating greed...
     
  14. InkyP

    InkyP Star commenter

    There was a programme a few years ago. On the basis of that programme I didn't like her much as a person although I like her food and appreciate how influential she was.
     
  15. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

  16. Programme details link
    He's the bloke who had The Shed in Fishguard!! I went there once as a kid, I asked dad and he remembers it - horrible cross country journey in an old banger, and a lovely camp site and posh meal out!
    I will go and have a look at the book!
     
  17. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    Starts tonight - 7:30

    The book is ace. Choc-full of lovely stuff. Not his best book, maybe, but still wonderful. Will be cooking from it over t'weekend.
     
  18. I'm watching [​IMG]
    Am loving the Roast Chicken book, btw
     
  19. That coq au vin........I have to make it asap. Never thought of marinading the chicken in the wine overnight before. That was a really clever touch.
    I thought I was the only one that poured toffee sauce over the pudding and put it under the grill though!
    Lovely programme - I shall definitely watch next week.
     
  20. I was drooling over the coq au vin too, totally delicious.
    My mum marinades the rabbit joints, for Maltese rabbit stew, in red wine and garlic. It really adds to the flavour of the meat.
     

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