A Book for Cooks


How about this?  The Independent has voted my recent book, A Book for Cooks published this autumn by Merrell, one of the 50 best books out this season. Not just cookery ones, either.  A detective novelist’s wife said recently that writers are hell to live with when toiling over the laptop and that their spouses have to be extremely long-suffering. Not, of course, in my case but then choosing your favourite 100 cookery books and writing 250 words on each is not nearly so complex as plotting a novel.  I did try writing one once (it never found a publisher, the rats) but, as a professional journalist, I was startled to discover the pleasure of changing  the story to suit the plot rather than being stuck with intractable and, often, contradictory facts. Perhaps that’s why I’m not a novelist. I’ve also just been asked by Country Life to contact six women chefs to find their sources of inspiration. Elizabeth David and Alice Waters of Chez Panisse in California were two favourites. Luckily my 100 best books included both of them. My current favourite is Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s Three Good Things which isn’t included in my book but that’s because it has just been published (and it didn’t make the Independent’s list either.)