Cooking the Books with Gilly Smith is about people and politics, climate change and culture – through the prism of food and the latest books of favourite food writers from Claudia Roden to Yotam Ottolenghi, Tom Kerridge, Anna Jones, Gill Meller, Olia Hercules, Dan Barber and Raymond Blanc.

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Cooking the Books with Gilly Smith

Helen Graves: Live Fire
This week, Gilly is with early food blogger and publisher of Pit Magazine, Helen Graves whose book Live Fire is about so much more than a summer BBQ. in her homage to live fire traditions, Helen takes us through her London, and the wonderfully diverse cultures which cook over open fire.

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Gill Meller: Outside

This week, Gilly is celebrating the poetry and timelessness of the great outdoors with award winning author and chef, Gill Meller.


 Outside is Gill's latest cook book which takes us to the elemental beauty of his home on the Jurassic coast on the Dorset and Devon border, just down the road from River Cottage where he has worked as a chef and tutor. His previous books Gather, Time and Root, Stem, Leaf, Flower have all captured this slice of Heaven, but Gill says that cooking outside doesn’t just have to be in the most beautiful place in the world; this is about slowing down anywhere and enjoying the magical simplicity of being outdoors.




If you fancy joining Gilly in learning to cook at Leiths, you can get a discount for Cooking the Books listeners. To get 10% off the Essentials online course, go to leithsonline.com/courses/essential-cooking Click ‘enrol’ on course page and apply the code: GILLY10 at checkout:  


And if you fancy a Free Hollandaise mini-course – Sign up for a Workshop account or login at: app.workshop.ws/profile and click ‘Redeem Coupon’ on the sidebar. Enter code GILLYSGIFT and click redeem.  


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Dominique Woolf: Dominique's Kitchen

This week, Gilly is with the winner of Channel 4’s Great Cookbook Challenge with Jamie Oliver, Dominique Woolf.


She’s a publisher’s dream – a busy mum juggling three young kids in the kitchen and cross platform ideas sizzling away on every burner, a Thai mum and aunty whizzing up sauces that really do transform every dish and a new book packed with super easy Pan Asian cook hacks. This is a woman to watch; she’ll have her own TV show before you can even say Saturday Kitchen.


For transcripts, go to GillySmith.com


To get 10% off the Essentials online course that Gilly is doing over over the next 6 months, go to leithsonline.com/courses/essential-cooking 

Click ‘enrol’ on course page and apply the code: GILLY10 at checkout:  


And if you fancy a Free Hollandaise mini-course – Sign up for a Workshop account or login at: app.workshop.ws/profile and click ‘Redeem Coupon’ on the sidebar. Enter code GILLYSGIFT and click redeem.  


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British Library Food Season Special: Sam and Sam Clark with Nawal Nasrallah and Bink Hallum

This week, in a special extended episode, Gilly is on stage at the British Library in London whose Food Season has been tantalising food fans with a whole month of talks inspired by the cookbooks, recipes and culinary stories in its collection. Speakers have included Jessica Harris, Angela Hartnett, Dan Saladino, Alice Waters, Felicity Cloake, Frances Moore Lappé and Henry Dimbleby.


Gilly's panel of experts explore 13th century Moorish cookery through an extraordinary story of a recently discovered mis-filed manuscript. Come and sit with the sold out audience as Polly Russell, curator of the Food Season introduces Sam and Sam Clark of Moro to the stage with Arabic scholar Nawal Nasrallah and the Curator of Arabic Scientific Manuscripts, Bink Hallum to time travel to Moorish Andalucia and taste 800 year old recipes cooked up Moro-style.


To get 10% off the Leith's Essentials online course that Gilly is doing over over the next 6 months, go to leithsonline.com/courses/essential-cooking 

Click ‘enrol’ on course page and apply the code: GILLY10 at checkout:  


And if you fancy a Free Hollandaise mini-course – sign up for a Workshop account or login at: app.workshop.ws/profile and click ‘Redeem Coupon’ on the sidebar. Enter code GILLYSGIFT and click redeem.  


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Joe Woodhouse: Your Daily Veg

This week, Gilly is with Joe Woodhouse to talk about cookery courses, food photography and launching your very first book in the middle of a war when your wife is Ukrainian food writer, Olia Hercules.


His book Your Daily Veg has been lauded by Nigella, Anna Jones and Cooking the Books favourite, Rachel Roddy, and is packed with recipes inspired his career to date styling and photographing food from all over the world, but also by a lifetime of being a vegetarian.



To get 10% off the Essentials online course that I’m doing over over the next 6 months, go to leithsonline.com/courses/essential-cooking 

Click ‘enrol’ on course page and apply the code: GILLY10 at checkout: 


And if you fancy a Free Hollandaise mini-course – Sign up for a Workshop account or login at: app.workshop.ws/profile and click ‘Redeem Coupon’ on the sidebar and enter code GILLYSGIFT 

 


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Melissa Hemsley: Feel Good

This week, Gilly is with the woman who made Cooking the Books happen in the first place! When Melissa Hemsley said yes to her invitation to be on a brand new indie podcast two years ago and before they'd even met, the rest of the A-listers flooded in. And that’s because she’s not just the best-selling green queen of Eat Happy and Eat Green, but one of the most generous, genuine and well-respected members of the food community. 


Her latest book Feel Good is what makes her so compelling as a read, both in her books and on her social media. Mental health, grief, joy and purpose, Melissa-shaped, coming your way.


To get 10% off the Essentials online course that I’m doing over over the next 6 months, go to leithsonline.com/courses/essential-cooking 

Click ‘enrol’ on course page and apply the code: GILLY10 at checkout: 

And if you fancy a Free Hollandaise mini-course – Sign up for a Workshop account or login at: app.workshop.ws/profile and click ‘Redeem Coupon’ on the sidebar and enter code GILLYSGIFT 

 


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Ella Risbridger: The Year of Miracles

This week, Gilly's talking about The Year of Miracles by Ella Risbridger. Like her first book, Midnight Chicken  and other recipes worth living for, it’s part memoir, part recipe book and reads like a novel. And despite not meaning to be a book about grief, it’s soaked in it. In a good way.  Ella describes grief 'like an anvil crashing through the floor revealing a whole new level where you can live', and where she lives is a really interesting place which questions a whole way of being. A fascinating insight into writing, grief and queerness from a writer the critics have called 'the new Nigella'.




To get 10% off the Essentials online course that I’m doing over over the next 6 months, go to leithsonline.com/courses/essential-cooking 

Click ‘enrol’ on course page and apply the code: GILLY10 at checkout: 

And if you fancy a Free Hollandaise mini-courseSign up for a Workshop account or login at: app.workshop.ws/profile and click ‘Redeem Coupon’ on the sidebar and enter code GILLYSGIFT 

 


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Sheila Dillon and Alex Renton: The Food Programme: 13 Foods That Shape Our World

This week, is all about The Food Programme, the Radio 4’s mighty series which has been examining our food, its culture and its politics for 43 years, and its first BBC book by Alex Renton taking us through 13 Foods that Shape our World.


Sheila Dillon, presenter of The Food Programme for much of that time has written the foreword. Gilly first met her back in 2017 for the delicious. podcast when the Food Programme was under threat from Radio 4. A mass outpouring of love for the show, new presenters, and now, a book, are just some of the results of that enforced rethink.  


Before Gilly chats to Alex about his four food moments from the book, Sheila reveals her own existential pondering, and a surprising fragility considering her role as doyenne of food in Britain.



And if you've been following Gilly's adventures in cookery @cookingthebookswithgillysmith, you can join in. To get 10% off the Essentials online course, go to leithsonline.com/courses/essential-cooking 

Click ‘enrol’ on course page and apply the code at checkout: GILLY10


If you fancy a free Hollandaise mini-course, sign up for a Workshop app account or login at: app.workshop.ws/profile, click ‘Redeem Coupon’ on the sidebar and enter code GILLYSGIFT 



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The Fortnum and Mason Awards Shortlist with Mark Diacono, Tara Wigley and Georgina Hayden

This week, Gilly meets the judges of this year's Fortnum and Mason Awards (who shortlisted Cooking the Books for Best Podcast!) to discuss the food books nominated for these Oscars of the food world.


The judges this year are three brilliant food writers, all of whom have been on Cooking the Books and were the pick of the best in 2021; Mark Diacono whose book Herb was on the shortlist, Georgina Hayden who won best Cookery Writer and Tara Wigley who, with Sami Tamimi, won best Food Book for Falastin.


Get your shopping list ready for the best books of the year, and hear what the judges were looking for in the best podcast...


Y0u can read the transcript here



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Kitty and Al Tait: Breadsong

This week Gilly is with Al and Kitty Tait, the dad and daughter team behind The Orange Bakery.


Kitty was just 14 years old when crippling depression didn’t just change her life but her family’s too. Baking bread was just one of the many things they tried to get her back, but it worked. And some…Just three years later The Orange Bakery is already a thriving business run by Kitty and her dad, Al , and their beautiful book,, Breadsong tells the story.


You can read the transcript here.


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Nicole Pisani and Joanna Weinberg: Feed your Family

This week, a subject very close to Gilly's heart and the work she does on the Food Foundation’s award-winning podcast, Right2Food – how to change British food culture through children. Chefs in Schools is a charity which teaches kids from the very youngest age to love food by growing it school gardens and eating the kind of dishes that makes most kids run screaming.


Co-founder, Nicole Pisani is a chef who has worked in top kitchens around the world from Rene Redzpei’s Noma to Ottolenghi’s Nopi and, with food writer Joanna Weinberg, has written the book, Feed Your Family which tells its story and shares the recipes which are feeding tens of thousands of British children a whole new way 


Click here for the transcript.


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Georgina Hayden: Nistisima

This week as it's Lent, we’re off to fast in Cyprus with Georgina Hayden, and to find a host of vegan gems in the traditional fasting food from religions and cultures of the Eastern Med and Eastern Europe.


Her book, Nistisima borrows the vegan dishes from the Greek Orthodox Church which frames her family life, as well as the rituals around Ukraine, Russia and Serbia where fasting is a rich vein of inspiration for meat and dairy free recipes. But it’s about much more than food; it’s how family, festival and ritual creates a food culture which connects us with where food comes from and why, as Socrates says, we eat to live. We began by discussing just how hard it is to find a gap in the book shelves these days, and what it takes to get a book deal.


You can read the transcript here


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Eleanor Ford: The Nutmeg Trail

This week Gilly is with multi-award winning food writer and explorer, Eleanor Ford whose latest book The Nutmeg Trail takes us on an adventure to exotic islands and across trade routes to show how the intoxicating power of spice has changed the world. 


Eleanor is also the author of Fire Islands which won The Guild of Food Writers' Best International or Regional Cookbook 2020, the Edward Stanford Travel Writing Award for best Food or Drink Book 2020 and two Gourmand World Cookbook Awards 2020. Her first book, Samarkand with Caroline Eden won the Guild of Food Writers Award for Food and Travel in 2017. In short, settle yourself in for some top quality listening.


You can read the transcript by clicking here



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Eat, Share, Love: Kalpna Woolf

This week, Gilly is with Kalpna Woolf, founder of the Bristol charity 91 Ways which brings together the 91 languages spoken in her hometown of Bristol in a series of pop up peace cafés. Her book Eat Share Love  features the recipes shared over the supper clubs where back story is the main ingredient.


She's been awarded The Guild of Food Writers Inspiration Award, BBC’s Food and Farming Food Hero Award and the Asian Women of Achievement Award and is one of the 20 people listed by Waitrose Food Magazine’s Making the World a Better Place to Live and Eat in 2020. And as Head of Production at Factual and Natural History at the BBC, she oversaw all the best in TV storytelling, including Frozen Planet, Planet Earth and TV chefs from Rick Stein and Nigel Slater to the Hairy Bikers.


You can buy the book directly from 91 Ways here


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Taste Tibet: Julie Kleeman and Yeshi Jampa

This week, Gilly takes us to Tibet with Yeshi Jampa and Julie Kleeman, the husband and wife team who brought the Himalayas to Oxford through their legendary restaurant and food stall - and now, book - Taste Tibet.  Yeshi grew up in Tibet, herding livestock on the high reaches of the Tibetan plateau and learning to cook inside a yak hair tent at a young age. When he was nineteen, Yeshi walked across the Himalayas to northern India, where he eventually met and married Julie a travelling scholar and adventurer. Together, they own and run the Taste Tibet restaurant and festival food stall, a Guardian and BBC Good Food Top Ten pick, and a finalist in the Best Street Food or Takeaway category in the 2021 BBC Food and Farming Awards


Taste Tibet is also available in full online at the Spotify of recipes here, ckbk.

Get 25% off ckbk membership with code COOKINGTHEBOOKS.


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Yemisi Aribisala: Longthroat Memoirs

After spending the last couple of months hearing the voice of Yemisi Aribisala introduce the best food books of 2021 in a special series with the Andre Simon awards, this episode is all about her book Longthroat Memoirs: Soups, Sex and Nigerian Taste Buds.


It won the Andre Simon’s John Avery award in 2016, possibly because of its use of food to prod under the skin of Nigerian life and poke at the politics and culture of her homeland. But in a country which doesn’t really like to talk about what they’re eating, Gilly finds a much more complex relationship, not just with food but with language and expression of pleasure.


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Andre Simon Shortlist Special: Yasmin Khan

In the last of the Andre Simon Shortlist Special series, we meet Yasmin Khan whose book Ripe Figs transports us across  the East Mediterranean, tasting the best food in Greece, Turkey and Cyprus in the company of refugees and activists. As  they chop and chat about borders, memory and identity, Yasmin shows us how food can give dignity and humanise people in the harshest of circumstances.


Plus, food assessor, the author Yemisi Aribisala explains why she chose Ripe Figs to be among the final seven best food books of 2021.


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Andre Simon Shortlist Special: Sambal Shiok

In the 5th episode of this special series celebrating the Andre Simon Awards 2021, Gilly discusses Mandy Yin’s shortlisted book Sambal Shiok with Singaporean writer, Sharon Wee while Mandy is on maternity leave. Sharon's 2012 book, Growing up in a Nonya Kitchen was a victim of plagiarism last year, which shook the global food community. But she hit back and is now working on a revised version which will be out later this year. You can hear her episode of Cooking the Books here.


As she compares the Singaporean Nonya kitchen with Mandy's Malaysian, she reveals some of the rich cultures which make up one of the most delicious cuisines in the world. But not before food assessor for the awards, Yemisi Aribisala tells us why Sambal Shiok is one of the best food books of 2021.








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Andre Simon Shortlist Special: Mark Diacono
In the 4th episode of the Cooking the Books Andre Simon Shortlist Special, we meet Mark Diacono, gardener, author and cook. He's no stranger to the Andre Simons; his stunning book A Year at Otter Farm won the Food Book of the Year in 2014. Before we hear his four food moments from his shortlisted Herb, we hear from food assessor, Yemisi Aribisala on why she's chosen it as one of her seven best books of 2021.

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Andre Simon Shortlist Special: Dee Rettali

The third in this special series celebrating the Andre Simon Awards 2021 in which Gilly meets the authors shortlisted for the prestigious food book gong with an introduction by food assessor, the Nigerian born author Yemisi Aribisala whose memoir Longthroat: 

Soups, Sex and Nigerian Taste Buds won the Andre Simon’s John Avery award in 2016.


Four out of seven on the shortlist have already appeared on Cooking the Books, and this week, you’ll get a chance to listen again to Dee Rettali tell Gilly how Baking with Fortitude, the name of her book as well as the story of her life,  is about so much more than bread and cake.



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Andre Simon Awards Shortlist: Rachel Roddy

The second in a special series in conjunction with the Andre Simon Awards 2021 .Each week, we'll start with an appraisal of each shortlisted author by this year's food assessor, the award winning Nigerian author, Yemisi Aribisala. Her book Longthroat Memoirs: Soups, Sex, and the Nigerian Taste Buds, which won the John Avery Award in the Andre Simons in 2016, uses Nigerian food as an entry point to think more deeply and understand culture and society. 


This week, Yemisi describes the storytelling style, rigour and 'good heartedness' that defines Guardian food columnist Rachel Roddy's work, and her latest book, The A-Z of Pasta: Stories, Shares, Sauces, Recipes, before we return to Rome during Lockdown when Gilly and Rachel first met.


You can also find CTB on Food FM, the online radio station and global podcast platform which aims to change the world through food. 


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The Andre Simon Awards Shortlist: Dan Saladino

In a special series celebrating the Andre Simon Awards 2021, Gilly celebrates the authors shortlisted for the prestigious food book prize.


Each week until the Awards themselves on March 8th, we meet the seven authors with an introduction by food assessor, the Nigerian born author Yemisi Aribisala. But first, we kick off with Dan Saladino whose book Eating to Extinction was one of Cooking the Books pick of the year in 2021, and meet trustees, Xanthe Clay and Sarah Jane Evans to chat through the shortlisted authors.


Cooking the Books with Gilly Smith is now on FoodFM, the online radio station and podcast platform which aims to change the world through food.


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Leah Hyslop: The Brownie Diaries
This week, Gilly is with the deputy editor of Waitrose Food Magazine, Leah Hyslop whose latest book The Brownie Diaries is oozing with the kind of stories and recipes you’d expect from someone whose job it is to pull endless ideas out of the bag. As Jamie Oliver launches a national hunt for the best cookbook author, Leah tells us about story, angle and pitch, and how much magazine editing has to do with making brownies in infinite ways.

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Ruth Nieman: Freekeh - Wild Wheat and Ancient Grains

This week Gilly's talking about something probably quite new to foodies, Biblical Cuisine with Ruth Nieman who has become the go-to expert on Israel’s ancient foods and recipes. Her first book, The Galilean Kitchen captured the oral recipes passed down through the matriarchs of the Druze, Muslim, Christian, and Bedouin communities in Northern Israel and won a Gourmand Award. Now her latest, Freekeh: Wild Wheats and Ancient Grains is longlisted for an Andre Simon Award.   Taking the meat out of some of the most unchanged recipes in living history, it has led to a fascinating contribution to the vegetarian canon.


Cooking the Books is part of The Food FM family.


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Saira Hamilton: My Bangladesh Kitchen

This week, Gilly is with 2013 MasterChef finalist, Saira Hamilton whose latest book takes us deep into the little-known food culture of Bangladesh. My Bangladesh Kitchen is full of food stories, poets and mystics and nostalgia for the country of Saira’s ancestors, But Bangladesh is also one of the fastest growing economies in the world as we find out as Saira explains the changing face of her family home.


Cooking the Books is now part of the Food FM family.


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Shaun and Craig McAnuff: Natural Flava

This week, Gilly is with the Flava brothers, Craig and Shaun McAnuff whose Caribbean recipes, inspired by their Jamaican grandmother, are all about traditional values – family, morals and community purpose. It was at her house in Croydon that they started filming their Youtube videos. They got a million views in a week.  But as they explored more about their heritage, they found that the Rastafarian Ital food philosophy had a great contribution to make to the growth of veganism and have shared it in their latest book, Natural Flava.


Cooking the Books with Gilly Smith is now on FoodFM, the online radio station and podcast platform which aims to change the world through food.


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Julia Georgallis: How to Eat Your Christmas Tree

This week, Gilly is with Julia Georgallis, supper club host, industrial designer and author of How to Eat your Christmas Tree who tells us how to have a super-sustainable - and delicious - Christmas.




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Selin Kiazim: Three
This week, Gilly Smith is with Selin Kiazim, Turkish-Cyrpiot chef at Oklava in Shoreditch. A few episodes back, Clare Finney, author of The Female Chef described Selin as one of the women redefining the hospitality industry. Gilly finds out what that means while picking through her formula of Acid, Texture and Contrast which is the subject of her latest book, Three.

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Rowan Jacobsen: The Truffle Hound

This week, Gilly is with James Beard award-winning author, Rowan Jacobsen whose book The Truffle Hound is a fabulous romp across the world in search of truffles. But it’s much more than a story of derring do and great dogs; it’s a love letter to truffles which have so much to say to humanity about everything from the health of the environment to how get more out of life. Who’d have thought that this wonderful fruit which lives in the shadows could bring so much light to a world losing its way? 


And you can buy the book by clicking here



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Alissa Timoshkina. Salt and Time
This week, Gilly is with Alissa Timoshkina whose book Salt and Time, a Waitrose one-to-watch for 2021, takes us into the Russian kitchen of her childhood, but also prods at many universal questions of food, identity and being a woman. As she takes us through her four food moments, we meet the Jewish Siberian matriarchs, her mother, grandmother and great grandmother whose food has literally shaped her and her own journey into motherhood.

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Sharon Wee: Growing up in a Nonya Kitchen

This week, Gilly is with New York food writer, Sharon Wee whose book Growing up in a Nonya Kitchen tells the story of Peranakan cuisine, a largely unknown type of cookery from Singapore, Malaysia and Malacca which was part of a craft culture binding Chinese women, including Sharon’s mother, into the fabric of a very particular lifestyle.


Sharon’s book which first came out in 2012 in Singapore has become much better known as the subject of plagiarism in an astonishing story that has gripped the food community over the last few months.  She’s not allowed to talk about it for legal reasons, and Gilly is much more interested in a food culture that was part of her early childhood in Penang, so here's the story of the nonyas and the babas and a little known cuisine.


"

If you'd like to get online access, ckbk has a 50% Black Friday offer on annual subscriptions, giving unlimited online access to more than 500 cookbooks including Growing up in a Nonya Kitchen: https://app.ckbk.com/subscribe


You can access the book online, and pre-order a print copy, here: https://app.ckbk.com/book/9814346365/growing-up-in-a-nonya-kitchen  





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Luca Iaccarino: Appetiti

This week, Gilly is with Luca Iaccarino, Italian food critic and journalist for Italy’s most respected newspapers la Republica and Corriere della Sera. But he’s also the co-creator of Buonissima, Turin’s most spectacular food festival featuring some of the best chefs in Europe. Gilly went to meet him by Interrail to the home of the Slow Food Movement, to explore Buonissima, meet Ferran Adria and inhale the truffles of nearby Alba. But beyond the storytelling and the glamour, Luca's new book pokes under the skin of Italian food culture and reveals a much more nuanced take on Italian food culture.


For more information about Cooking the Books, including the Supper Clubs, go to Gilly Smith, and follow me oninstagram @foodgillysmith and @cookingthebookswithgillysmith.


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Clare Finney: The Female Chef

This week, Gilly is with Clare Finney, author of The Female Chef. The book - and the chat - is a wonderfully multi-layered exploration of what it means to be a woman in a professional kitchen in 2021. With interviews from many of Britain’s biggest names in food, including Thomasina Miers, Zoe Adjonyoh, Andi Oliver and Ravinder Bhogal, and with a foreword from Sheila Dillon, it moves the conversation on from the hugely important subject of equality in the workplace to examine the many and nuanced notions of femaleness.







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Bettina Campolucci Bordi: Celebrate

This week, Gilly is with vegan queen, retreat chef and recipe consultant, Bettina Campolucci Bordi whose new book Celebrate is about flavours from around the world, influenced by her own peripatetic childhood and Skandi/Bulgarian parentage. But more, it’s all about wellness and conscious cooking, dressed up for a great big party.



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Dan Saladino: Eating to Extinction

This week, Gilly is with Dan Saladino, co-presenter of Radio 4 and BBC Sounds’ The Food Programme whose whopping 400 page debut, Eating to Extinction is a story of the world’s rarest foods and why we need to save them It’s a sweeping story of our relationship with food, of loss of diversity and its impact on humankind, our gut and our planet, woven through with wonderful tales of resilience and know-how of the food heroes, farmers and growers who hold the key to our future.


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Saliha Mahmood Ahmed:Foodology
This week, Gilly is with Saliha Mahmood Ahmed, Masterchef 2017 winner and author of Khazana, a history of the Mughal empire whose day job as gastroenterologist has inpsired her latest book Foodology, a food lover’s guide to digestive health.

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Dee Rettali: Baking with Fortitude
This week, Gilly talks the politics and culture of cake and bread with craft baker at Fortitude Bakehouse, Dee Rettali who was one of the first people to bring biodynamic, organic foods to London in the mid '90s. She's also made cakes for Madonna and Prince Charles, so famed is she for the sustainability and craft she puts in the mix. She founded Patisserie Organic in 1998 and her Soho-born coffee and sandwich shop Fernandez & Wells blazed a trail way before the boho bakeries and hipsters made real bread cool. Her book, Baking with Fortitude takes its name from her bakery chain, Fortitude Bakehouse but decribes a woman with grit in her belly.

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Claudia Roden: Med
This week, Gilly is with surely everyone’s food hero, Claudia Roden who brought Jewish and Middle Eastern food to the world. Yotam Ottolenghi and Sam and Sam Clarke at Moro are among the many chefs who say that it all started with Claudia. Now, at 85, she’s got a new book out, Med which brings her personal stories and inventive flourish to the flavours of the Mediterranean. And she's still FULL of stories.

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Tim Hayward: Loaf Story

This week Gilly is at the Abergavenny Food Festival with Financial Times restaurant critic and Kitchen Cabinet panellist, Tim Hayward. His latest book, Loaf Story is a love letter to bread, but tells a story of Britishness and class. 



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James Rebanks: English Pastoral
This week Gilly is with one of the most important voices in food right now, sheep farmer and award winning author, James Rebanks.  His books The Shepherd’s Life and English Pastoral beautifully and powerfully remind us of the connection between what we eat, where it comes from and the relationship between humans, nature and climate change in a way that will make you punch the sky and cry your heart out. Here he gives us his four food moments from this year's Fortnum and Mason Food Book of the year award, English Pastoral.

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Gennaro Contaldo: Limoni

This week, we're staying in the Mediterranean as Gilly sniffs the lemons of the Amalfi coast with everyone’s favourite Italian, Gennaro Contaldo.


Since Gilly first met Gennaro, the conversation about food has changed: veganism, eating less but better to save the planet, regenerative farming for soil health, it’s a whole new language. But, as Gennaro shows us in his latest book, Limoni, it’s actually the very essence of the Mediterranean Diet. 


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Dr Simon Poole: The Real Mediterranean diet

This week, Gilly is with GP, Dr Simon Poole whose latest book The Real Mediterranean Diet shares the latest science behind the world’s oldest and healthiest diet.



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Kylee Newton: The Modern Preserver

This week, Gilly is with Kylee Newton whose fermenting and pickling masterclasses were featured in the Guardian and The Times.  Formerly a fine purveyor of presrves and pickles, her brand Newton & Pott has morphed from production to media as Kylee’s latest book The Modern Preserver hits the shelves.   

A serial entrepreneur and all-round creative, her story of making it up as you go along will be familiar to many listeners who’ve always wanted to turn their hobby into their world.


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Nik Sharma: The Flavour Equation

This week, Gilly Smith talks to scientist, Guardian food writer and finalist for a James Beard food photography award, Nik Sharma. He argues that his Flavour Equation is about the emotion, sight, sound, mouthfeel, aroma and taste of food which add up to the only way to eat.




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Orlando Murrin: Two's Company
This week, Gilly talks to Orlando Murrin, former editor of BBC Good Food magazine, founder of Olive magazine, Waitrose columnist and president of the Guild of Food Writers about his role in creating modern British food culture back in the 90s and 2000s. And as a seasoned trendsetter, he tells us how his new book Two’s Company tackles the issue of waste.

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Gilly Smith: Taste and the TV Chef

This week, we’re on a bit of a summer special when Gilly is in the hot seat for a change. Food writer Bee Farrell chats about her book, Taste and the TV Chef, which recently won a clutch of awards including the International Impact Award. Bee is currently doing a PhD in the anthropology of food in the C21st and is fascinated with the rituals and performance surrounding eating, regenerative gastronomy and food storytelling, and asks Gilly if influencers really can save the planet



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Sophie Grigson: A Curious Absence of Chickens
This week, Gilly is off to Puglia to catch up with adventuress-in-chief and legendary food writer, Sophie Grigson two years after she upped sticks and left the UK for a brand new post-kids adventure in Italy. Her new book, A Curious Absence of Chickens is an immersion into the heart of her new world, and a set of goals for anyone who wants a taste of a more delicious way to live.

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Zuza Zak: Amber and Rye

This week, we’re off to the Baltic with Polish food writer, Zuza Zak whose latest book Amber and Rye takes us to Estonia, Lativia and Lithuania, an arty new Europe where food has so much to say. 


Zuza tells Gilly how her trip to the Baltic cities of Vilnius, Tallinn and Riga was a journey back through her childhood memories to a place made magical through separation and storytelling.  Through Lithuanian and Greek mythology, traditional dishes and a renaissance in food culture, we go deep into this magical world and find something rather precious.


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Emily Scott: Sea and Shore

This week, Gilly is Zooming down to Cornwall to meet the woman of the moment,Emily Scott, one of only two British chefs chosen to feed the leaders of the Western World at this summer’s G7 summit. Her debut cookbook, Sea and Shore is an ode to the simple life, something she's finally managed to balance with feeding Joe Biden.



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Towpath
This week, Gilly heads down the Regent’s Canal to Hackney’s favourite café, The Towpath with owners and authors of the book of the cafe Lori de Mori and Laura Jackson. It's a place which Keira Knightly, no less, says is the reason she lives in London and, as Gilly explores why it is a ' jewel-like dream of a place', she stumbles across the meaning of life.

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Rachel Roddy: The A-Z of Pasta
This week, Gilly Smith Zooms to Rome to talk about the the jigsaw puzzle of pasta shapes that make Italy what it is for Guardian food columnist and multi award winning author, Rachel Roddy. 

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Uyen Luu: Vietnamese

This week, Gilly Smith is off to Vietnam through the memories and food of film maker, supper club host and food writer, Uyen Luu to talk about her new book, Vietnamese.  Uyen arrived in the UK aged 5 with her mother and brother, part of a mass exodus of over 800,000 boat people who fled Vietnam between 1975 and 1995. By 2010, she would become the word on Vietnamese cooking and a contributor to Observer Food Monthly after huge success with her London supper clubs.

 


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Honey and co: Chasing Smoke
This week, Gilly Smith is with Sarit Packer and Itamar Srulovitch from Honey and co. as they chase smoke and cook over open fire around the levant.

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Ben Tish: Sicilia
This week, Gilly Smith is off to Sicily with Norma chef, Ben Tish via the four food moments in his latest book Sicilia.

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Bill Buford: Dirt; Adventures in French Cooking

This week, Gilly is zooming into Manhattan with Bill Buford, the former fiction editor of The New Yorker and author of Dirt to hear how he uprooted his family and immersed them for five years in an epic adventure in French cooking. Through his four food moments, he tells her how he went in search of the roots of great French food and found the heart of food culture in Lyon, gastronomic centre of the world.





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Raymond Blanc: Simply Raymond and The Lost Orchard
This week, Gilly is with Raymond Blanc OBE, and it's been a big year for him. His beloved mother, known affectionately as Maman Blanc died while suffering from COVID, he survived a very serious dose of COVID  himself through which he learned, finally, to meditate. And he’s released not one but two books – The Lost Orchard in which he lovingly reintroduces us to the apples and pears of our British heritage, and Simply Raymond an homage to his mother and her simple but delicious rustic cooking. As Gilly zooms into le Manoir, she finds him in reflective mood, celebrating the legacy of Maman and Papa Blanc, the role of Le Manoir in British culinary history and planting trees with Prince Charles.

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Kim Duke: Weekly Provisions
This week, Gilly is with Kim Duke, co-founder of Life Kitchen, the cookery classes and book for people living with Cancer which are all about working with super-flavour to learn to taste again when in chemo. Her debut cook book, Weekly Provisions comes three years after this collaboration with her best mate, Ryan Riley and hot on the heels of COVID which also ripped the pleasure of taste from so many of its victims. The result is an extraordinary book which hits us over the head with flavour as Kim remixes her original dishes with the chutzpah that characterises the story of this pair of Newcastle’s have-a-go cooks. 

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Anna Jones: One Pot, Pan, Planet
This week, Gilly is with Anna Jones, vegetarian queen of simple, creative, delicious sustainability in the kitchen on the four food moments from her latest book One Pot, Pan, Planet, how Jamie Oliver helped to light her fire, cooking for the Obamas and how a simple life really is the way to save the planet.  

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Anas Atassi: Sumac

This week, Gilly is in the Syria of Anas Atassi's childhood which inspired his book Sumac. He and his family left the country before the war began in 2011 which has left more than 380,000 people dead and devastated its ancient cities and their cultural heritage. But as Syrian refugees spread across the world, its food has become its identity, and as Anas takes us through the food from the old country, he tells us why it matters so much.



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Rob Howell: Root
This week, Gilly talks with Rob Howell whose book Root tells the story of one of the new stars of the Bristol sustainable food scene. Root the plant-focussed restaurant, comes from the stable of Josh Eggleton, a long-time advocate of the field to fork movement at the Michelin -starred Pony and Trap, and co-founder of the Eat Drink, Bristol Fashion festival which promotes the importance of food sustainability. Rob talks through the four food moments from the book which bring us up to date with one of the UK's most exciting food cultures.

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Laurie Woolever on Anthony Bourdain

This week, Gilly Smith remembers the late great Anthony Bourdain, surely the most exciting storytelling in food who shocked the world by taking his own life in 2018. His assistant, lieutenant, gate-keeper and co-author is Laurie Woolever who had just begun to put together their next book, a travel guide to some of Bourdain’s favourite cities. As she talks through her four food moments from World Travel: An Irreverent Guide, the book that it became, we journey into the mind of a man who had so much to say about food and the world. 

 


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Grace Regan: Spicebox
This week, Gilly is with the star of the future of the British curry house, vegan cook and serial entrepreneur Grace Regan, a Young British Foodies street food finalist, a Red Magazine Women of the Year short-lister and long-lister for the BBC Food Rising Star Award. Her street food stall, curry house and now book, Spice Box draws on her great aunt Dolly’s food from the old country and her annual trips travelling off the beaten track in India.

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Naved Nasir: Dishoom

This week, Gilly is walking through the back streets of old Bombay with Naved Nasir, executive chef at Dishoom to find the Irani Cafes which inspired the book and the restaurant chain, and to talk about nostalgia, cultural appropriation and how to save a restaurant in a Pandemic.



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Ollie Hunter: Join the Greener Revolution
This week, Gilly is with Ollie Hunter, activist chef and hyper local champion whose restaurant The Wheatsheaf near Hungerford won the Sustainable Restaurant Association’s Business of the Year award in 2019. A former Masterchef finalist, he’s a philosopher. an alchemist and a revolutionary, and his latest book Join the Greener Revolution is his manifesto to eat to save the planet.

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Emiko Davies: Torta della Nonna
This week, Gilly's in Florence with Australian-Japanese food writer, Emiko Davies who has made Tuscany her home. In her latest book, Torte della Nonna, she digs deep into the culinary and family history of Florentine sweets to find a tradition sticking deliciously to what it does best.

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Durkhanai Ayubi: Parwana

This week, Gilly is with Durkhanai Ayubi whose book Parwana tells the story of her family’s memories and recipes from her native Afghanistan set against a sweeping history of a country ravaged by power plays and unwelcome international interference. 


To access the recipes from Parwana as well as a curated collection of hundreds of the world's greatest cookbooks with over 87,000 recipes, CKBK  is offering listeners a 25% discount if you use the code cookingthebooks on checkout.




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Katie Caldesi: The 30 Minute Diabetes Cookbook
This week, Gilly is with food writer, Katie Caldesi who wrote The 30 Minute Diabetes Cookbook with her husband, the Italian chef Giancarlo Caldesi after he was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. With a foreword by Dr David Unwin, the pioneering low carb GP whose diabetic patients have seen astonsihign results, and expert nutrition advice from Jenny Philips, it’s a must read for anyone with a tell-tale big belly. 

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Theo Randall: The Italian Deli Cookbook
This week, we hop into the back seat of chef Theo Randall’s parent’s car and head through 1970s Italy, stopping at markets and stalls, delis and trattoria to find the inspiration behind some of the best food in London and Theo’s Italian Deli Cookbook. 

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Brad Carter: Staff
This week, Gilly is virtually in Birmingham with chef Brad Carter whose book Staff tells the story of his journey through DJing and all-night raves to his Michelin starred restaurant, Carter’s of Moseley. 

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JP McMahon: Food on the Edge and Lessons from Lockdown
This week, Gilly is with JP McMahon, chef patron at Michelin-starred Aniar and the brains behind Galway’s food symposium, Food on the Edge. His activist influence is vast, and even in a pandemic he’s doing his bit with a new book, Lessons from Lockdown, an anthology of thought-provoking letters to an imaginary young chef from his vast network of brilliant chefs around the world.

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Dan Barber: The Third Plate

This week, Gilly is at Blue Hill at Stone Barns, chef Dan Barber's restaurant deep in the countryside of New York.  In his 2014 book, The Third Plate, Dan wrote a new manifesto in food, taking us right back to its roots to tell a story which has changed the way many chefs all over the globe are thinking about the way we eat.


And this month at the top of the show,  we’re finding out about SuperLooper, the children’s clothing rental business that could save the planet.




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Pen Vogler: Scoff
This week Gilly Smith talks British food and class with food historian, Pen Vogler in a romp through etiquette and faux pas, dysfunction and obsession around food in her new book, Scoff.

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The Seafood Shack: Kirsty Scobie and Fenella Renwick
This week, Gilly Smith talks to Kirsty Scobie and Fenella Renwick about winning the Jane Grigson Trust award for new food writers with their debut cookbook The Seafood Shack. As they take her through their four food moments, the stories of the sea, the local fishermen and the scallop divers set against the 80 delicious recipes reminds us that food is much more than what’s on the plate.  

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Sam Rice: The Midlife Method
This week, Gilly talks to Sam Rice, co-author with Mimi Spencer of The Midlife Kitchen whose new book The Midlife Method offers a more holistic approach to the way we eat as we get older.

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Sam Gates: The Batch Cook

This week, Gilly is with Sam Gates’ whose Batch Cook Book went straight to number one on Amazon when it came out at the end of last year. It's a sure sign that people are desperate for tips on how to get the most out of their Lockdown cook ups but also, perhaps it's an indicator of an interest in reducing waste.


Plus the last of the soundbites from this year’s online version of the Oxford Real Farming Conference which you can now watch for free at orfc.org.uk, Dr Vandana Shiva, a modern day revolutionary who takes on the biggest companies in the world in her fight against Big Tech in the food industry. 




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Razzak Mirjan and Tom Cenci: From Beder's Kitchen

This week, as we head towards Blue Monday, the day when the credit card bills hit the door mat and midwinter can feel very bleak indeed, Gilly meets Razzak Mirjan whose recipe book From Beder’s Kitchen raises awareness around mental health as a tribute to his brother, Beder who took his own life. Razzak and chef,Tom Cenci talk about food and mood, mental health in the professional kitchen and the outpouring of love from the food community for the project.


And listen in to Anna Lappe at the top of the show. Anna is one of the most influential and inspiring speakers on climate and food in the world, and previews her talk at this year’s online version of the Oxford Real Farming Conference: Spinning Food: PR Tactics Industry Uses to Shape the Story of Food. You can watch the whole conference after Jan 13th on the ORFC youtube channel or by going to orfc.org. And do find out all abhut Anna and her extraordinary work at annalappe.com


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Pinch of Nom: Quick and Easy

This week, Gilly talks to Kate Allinson and Kay Featherstone, two former restaurant owners from the Wirral who have made simple, healthy food accessible to millions of people who never learned to cook. What started as a WeightWatcher’s blog has became a triple whammy cookbook sensation, and here they take us through their four food moments from the latest in the series, Pinch of Nom: Quick and Easy.


And throughout this season, we'll hear from the Oxford Real Farming Conference where the most inspiring speakers in the world on food and climate like Naomi Klein, Vandana Shiva, Guy Singh-Watson and Anna Lappe join the dots of an increasingly food-shaped world.




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Carolyn Steel: Sitopia
This week, Gilly talks with the visionary writer, architect and philosopher, Carolyn Steel whose book Sitopia was one of 2020’s most important reads. Through four food moments tracing right back to the beginning of civilisation, Carolyn redraws the lines around a food-shaped world, joining the dots in the history of how we eat, and pointing out where the breaks began which left us fighting to save the planet.

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Trine Hahnemann: Scandinavian Green
This Christmas week, Gilly talks with Danish food writer and activist chef, Trine Hahnemann about a gloriously plant-based, uncommercial hygge Christmas in her latest book Scandinavian Green.

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The Rangoon Sisters: Authentic Burmese Home Cooking
This week, Gilly talks to doctors, food writers and supper club hosts Emily and Amy Chung, aka The Rangoon Sisters about the four food moments from their debut cookbook, which is number 8 in the Observer Food Monthly’s top ten food books of 2020.  The sisters have been cooking up their Burmese family food since their first visit back to the old country in 2012, and find the food from their diaspora has hit the spot with a much wider community.

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Lara Lee: Coconut and Sambal


This week, Gilly is off to Indonesia with Australian caterer and food writer, Lara Lee to explore food and identity in her debut cook book, Coconut and Sambal.


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Christine Smallwood: The World Vegetarian - Italy

This week, Italian food expert, Christine Smallwood takes Gilly Smith through the markets and osterias of Puglia to the cool new restaurants of Milan and childhood memories of Ischia as she discusses the place of the vegetable in Italian cuisine.



This season is sponsored by Odysea whose range of Mediterranean foods are just what we need to get through a COVID winter. This week, home mixologist and Bake Off star, Tom Gilliford talks us through why molasses are a delicious alternative to refined sugar in your cocktails this Christmas.


Music by Willy Zygier


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The Pie Room: Calum Franklin

This week, Gilly Smith chats to Pie Man, Calum Franklin about the four food moments in his new book The Pie Room. We learn how he pulled out pies from the depths of British culinary history and turned them into a story that has captivated his 120k followers on Instagram, had super star chef Thomas Keller send his teams over from California to watch and learn and beaten Jamie Oliver to the top spot on Amazon Books.


This season is sponsored by Odysea whose range of Mediterranean foods are just what we need to get through a COVID winter. This week, Susana Perez of Susana and Daughters on the Cowdray Estate tells us about the health properties of kefir, and we learn about the goats from the foothills of Menikio mountain in Northern Greece who produce the milk for Odysea's kefir.


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Tom Kerridge: The Hand and Flowers Cookbook

This week, Gilly Smith talks to Tom Kerridge about the four food moments from his brand new book, The Hand and Flowers Cookbook. Expect insider tips on getting a first Michelin star, Instagram’s influence on curious young chefs and for a masterclass in Elizabeth David’s original crème brulee. 


This season is sponsored by Odysea whose range of Mediterranean foods are just what we need to get through a COVID winter. This week, honey sommelier, Sarah Wyndham Lewis at Bermondsey Street Bees tells us about Odysea's raw honeys, Pine and Fir Tree and Greek Oak Tree raw honeys which have both been certified as high sources of the mineral manganese which boosts the metabolism and keeps your bones in good nick.


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Mimi Aye: Mandalay

This week, Gilly is transported to Burma and the deeply exotic hills of the land of rubies through the childhood memories and family stories in MiMi Aye's beautiful book, Mandalay.


This season is sponsored by Odysea whose range of Mediterranean foods are just what we need to get through a COVID winter. This week, we learn about Odysea's Extra Virgin Olive Oil, produced from polyphenol rich olives from groves in Messinia in the Kalamata region, where the olives are still harvested by hand. The oil is cold extracted within hours of the olives being picked to ensure the flavour and health benefits remain. Served with food, the pepperiness and the slightest almond skin bitterness is a delicious and vital part of your healthy diet.


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Theo Michaels: Rustica

This week, Gilly Smith is back in the Mediterranean – virtually of course - with Theo Michaels whose latest book Rustica explores the recipes of his family's village life in Cyprus.


It's all sponsored this month by Montezuma’s, Britain’s greatest little chocolate company who believe that their beautifully produced and packaged chocolate is positively good for the planet. The ethically-sourced ingredients in their bars, buttons, bites and truffles are all free from gluten, GM, colourings and preservatives and every product is also delivered in packaging that’s either recyclable, biodegradable, or compostable, making this a chocolate company with a conscience.


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James Strawbridge: The Artisan Kitchen

This week, Gilly escapes to the Cornish countryside (virtually, of course) with TV presenter and eco chef, James Strawbridge whose BBC series It’s Not Easy Being Green with dad, Dick Strawbridge of Escape to the Chateau fame, was way ahead of its time. 


It's all sponsored this month by Montezuma’s, Britain’s greatest little chocolate company who believe that their beautifully produced and packaged chocolate is positively good for the planet. The ethically-sourced ingredients in their bars, buttons, bites and truffles are all free from gluten, GM, colourings and preservatives and every product is also delivered in packaging that’s either recyclable, biodegradable, or compostable, making this a chocolate company with a conscience.


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Rukmini Iyer: The Roasting Tin Around the World

This week Gilly is with the food writer who has sold more food books than anyone else in the UK after the Pinch of Noms, Jamie Oliver, Mary Berry and Joe Wicks.  Rukmini Iyer’s Roasting Tin series does just what it says; it roasts in one tin the kind of inspiring and easy flavours that look and taste so good that the country can’t get enough. She gives Gilly her four favourite food moments from the latest in the series, The Roasting Tin Around the World.


CTB is sponsored this month by Montezuma’s, Britain’s greatest little chocolate company who believe that their beautifully produced and packaged chocolate is positively good for the planet. The ethically-sourced Fair Trade ingredients in their bars and buttons are all free from gluten, GM, colourings and preservatives and every product is also delivered in packaging that’s either recyclable, biodegradable, or compostable, making this a chocolate company with a conscience.


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Yotam Ottolenghi and Ixta Belfrage: Flavour

This week, the king of vegetables, Yotam Ottolenghi and his test kitchen princess, Ixta Belfrage teach us some of the secrets of the alchemy behind the recipes in their latest book, Flavour


CTB is sponsored this month by Montezuma’s, Britain’s greatest little chocolate company who believe that their beautifully produced and packaged chocolate is positively good for the planet. The ethically-sourced ingredients in their bars, buttons, bites and truffles are all free from gluten, GM, colourings and preservatives and every product is also delivered in packaging that’s either recyclable, biodegradable, or compostable, making this a chocolate company with a conscience.


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Isabel Losada: The Joyful Environmentalist
Author Isabel Losada talks through the four food moments in her latest book The Joyful Environmentalist, a romp through how low we can go with our carbon footprint.

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Tom Hunt: Eating for Pleasure, People and Planet
Eco chef Tom Hunt’s root to fruit philosophy has made him the king of sustainability in the food world. His restaurant, Poco Tapas in Bristol is a showcase of sustainable cuisine and his new book, Eating for Pleasure, People and Planet is a manifesto for getting our climate balance right. Gilly Smith whose book Taste and the TV Chef: how storytelling can save the planet is out this month, finds out how to make the changes we need to make save the world.

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Felicity Cloake: One More Croissant for the Road

This week, in the last of our summer holiday listens, Gilly Smith saddles up for Felicity Cloake's four food moments in her book One More Croissant for the Road, and a deep dive into the best of French gastronomy...by bike.


This month Cooking the Books is sponsored by Whole Foods Market, the world’s leading natural and organic foods retailer. With 7 stores across London, they offer a huge range of products that lead the way in quality, specialty and vegan diets. Head over to @wholefoodsuk or check out @alexandradudley for more information on the Mindful Moments campaign. 


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Irini Tzortzoglou: Under the Olive Tree

This week, Gilly Smith is, virtually, in Crete with MasterChef 2019 winner, Irini Tzortzoglou whose four food moments take us through her debut cook book Under the Olive Tree. Packed with stories of family and feasting, this is her extraordinary journey from rural Crete to the City of London and back to the food of her home, but this time as a champion. 


This month Cooking the Books is sponsored by Whole Foods Market, the world’s leading natural and organic foods retailer. With 7 stores across London, they offer a huge range of products that lead the way in quality, specialty and vegan diets. Head over to @wholefoodsuk or check out @alexandradudley for more information on the Mindful Moments campaign. 


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Skye McAlpine: A Table for Friends

This week we’re off to Venice with food writer and columnist and Venetian local, Skye McAlpine to hear her four food moments from her latest book A Table for Friends.



This month Cooking the Books is sponsored by Whole Foods Market, the world’s leading natural and organic foods retailer. With 7 stores across London, they offer a huge range of products that lead the way in quality, specialty and vegan diets. Head over to @wholefoodsuk or check out @alexandradudley for more information on the Mindful Moments campaign. 

 



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The Official Giffords Circus Cookbook: Ols Halas

This week, Gilly runs away with the circus as Ols Halas, chef at Gifford's Circus restaurant Sauce and co-author with Nell Gifford of its official cookbook walks her through the glittering capes and pointy-toed ponies to peak behind life in the big tent.


This episode is sponsored by Whole Foods Market, the world’s leading natural and organic foods retailer. With 7 stores across London, they offer a huge range of products that lead the way in quality, specialty and vegan diets. Head over to @wholefoodsuk or check out @alexandradudley for more information on the Mindful Moments campaign. 


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Ana Ros: Sun and Rain
This week, Gilly Smith takes us - by the magic of remote recording - on a summer holiday to Slovenia, to the magical land of turquoise rivers and Dalmatian montains to visit top chef Ana Ros at her gourmet restaurant, Hisa Franko.

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Gill Meller: Root,Stem, Leaf, Flower
This week, Gilly talks to food writer and River Cottage chef Gill Meller about the four food moments from his new book Root, Stem, Leaf, Flower that ponder on his relationship with food and the land.

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William Sitwell: The Restaurant

This week William Sitwell, restaurant critic at the Telegraph, host of the podcast Biting Talk and author of The Restaurant takes us through the history not just of eating out but the story of human life through the prism of how we’ve learned to eat.



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Ravinder Bhogal: Jikoni
Award-winning food writer, journalist and chef Ravinder Bhogal gives us her four favourite food moments from her new book Jikoni: proudly inauthentic recipes from an immigrant kitchen. Expect clucking aunties in dusty sandals and ancient pickle-makers with guard geese, wronged widows and the glee of ghee. Glorious stuff.

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Olia Hercules: Summer Kitchens
Olia Hercules, author of the award-winning Mamushka and Kaukasis takes us through four food moments from her latest book Summer Kitchens and paints an evocative picture of her Ukrainian childhood.

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Priya Basil: Be My Guest
This week, Gilly Smith talks food philosophy with novelist and essayist, Priya Basil whose book, Be My Guest was shortlisted for this year’s Fortnum and Mason best debut food book award and is an evocative exploration of food, race and memory. Sponsored by http://www.city-books.co.uk

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Jeff Gordinier: Hungry
This week, Gilly is (virtually) in Manhattan in the home of Jeff Gordinier, former New York Times journalist and author of Hungry, to retrace the footsteps of what must be one of the best food journalist gigs ever,  a rock ‘n’ roll road trip with Rene Redzepi, the greatest chef in the world.

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Joanne Harris: The Strawberry Thief
This week, Gilly Smith talks to author Joanne Harris twenty years after she first fell in love with Vianne, Anouk and Roux in Chocolat and then couldn’t wait to find them again in The Lollipop Shoes, Peaches for Monsieur le Cure and now The Strawberry Thief, the latest in the Chocolat series. Sponsored by http://www.city-books.co.uk

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Jo Thomas: Escape to the French Farmhouse
This week, Gilly talks to award-winning author Jo Thomas whose Escape to the French Farmhouse is the perfect Lockdown read to transport you to Provence this summer as our heroine Della reminds us of the lost art of cooking with lavender. Sponsored by http://www.city-books.co.uk

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Sara Paretsky: Dead Land


Guest presenter, Elizabeth Perry, aka E.C Reads on Instagram talks to Sara Paretsky about the food moments in Dead Land, the latest in the series to feature her private detective V.I. Warshawski. When Indemnity Only, the first, was published in 1982, Paretsky revolutionised the genre with this tough-talking female private eye, and in 2002 won the Cartier Diamond Dagger for lifetime achievement. Elizabeth has been reading her since she was 14 and admits that she is massive nerd-level fan.  


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Benjamin Myers: The Offing
This week Gilly Smith chats (remotely) with award-winining author, Benjamin Myers whose success with his previous novels, particularly The Gallows Pole has given him the accolade of the most powerful new voices in literature.   In this, his eighth novel, The Offing, he tells a Homeric tale of Robert, a 16 year old boy who sets out across 1950’s Yorkshire to Robin Hood’s Bay and finds a gloriously long summer of food, poetry and an unlikely freidnship with an eccentric and artistic older woman called Dulcie. 

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Kate Young: The Little Library Cookbook
Australian food writer, cook and bookworm Kate Young talks to Gilly Smith about the four food moments in the most important books of her life. From The Chamomile Lawn to The Secret Garden, Kate remembers the food on the plates of the characters in her inner world.

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Henrietta Lovell: Infused
Henrietta Lovell takes us through the four food moments that add extra flavour to her book Infused, a story of rare tea, adventure, resilience, courage and deep, deep pleasure. 

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Ingrid Persaud: Love after Love
Short story queen Ingrid Persaud takes us through the four food moments in her debut novel, Love After Love, the much anticipated Faber super-lead written in Trinidadian prose which tackles the questions of who and how we can love. 

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Sami Tamimi and Tara Wigley: Falastin
Gilly Smith has lunch with Ottolenghi's Executive Chef Sami Tamimi and his co-author of Falastin, Tara Wigley to find the four food moments that tell their story of their new book about Sami's homeland of Palestine.

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Miranda Gore Brown: Bake Me a Cake as Fast as You Can
Series 1 finalist of The Great British Bake Off, Miranda Gore-Brown chooses four recipes to talk through her adventures in baking. A bittersweet story about so much more than cake.

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Ryan Riley: Life Kitchen
Food entrepreneur and author of Life Kitchen Ryan Riley talks through the four food moments which brought taste, flavour and the joy of eating back to thousands of people living with cancer.

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Romy Gill: Zaika
Chef, author and new presenter of BBC's Ready Steady Cook, Romy Gill chooses four food moments that take her back to the childhood in West Bengal which inspired her debut cookbook, Zaika, and led her to become one of BBC TV's latest TV chefs.

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Melissa Hemsley: Eat Green
Green queen Melissa Hemsley gives us the four food moments from Eat Green that net zeroed her life, and shows us how clearing out the back of the fridge can be a delicious way to save the planet.

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Kiran Millwood Hargrave: The Mercies
Award winning children’s writer Kiran Millwood Hargrave tells us about the food that puts the flesh on the bones of the women in her first adult novel The Mercies, a story of love, evil, and obsession based on the 1621 witch trials

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Olivia Potts: A Half Baked Idea
Olivia Potts talks through the food of grief in her tender, funny and moreish memoir, A Half-Baked Idea.

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