Radio 4 comes to town

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The panel on the stage

The Kitchen Cabinet” with renowned food critic Jay Rayner was recorded at at Rye College on Wednesday, January 29.

John Botterell and Richard Hutley

It included Rye foodies “face for radio” and esteemed baker Richard Hutley of the Lazy Bakery, who supplied three types of Rye bread (geddit!) and also well known fishmonger John Botterell of Seafarers in Rye Harbour who shucked a scallop in front of the audience, discussing methods of cooking.

The panel consisted of Jay as chairperson, with four others involved in the food industry.

Dr Annie Gray is a food historian, specialising in British food and dining from c. 1650-1950. She works across a wide variety of fields, specialising in presentation of food and the way food has historical interpretations. Annie has worked with the major public-focused heritage organisations such as the National Trust and English Heritage.

Jordan Bourke trained in Ireland, and was immediately picked up by Skye Gyngell in Petersham, London. Jordan is also the UK’s leading authority on Korean cuisine. He was awarded an honorary ambassadorship by the Korean Foreign Ministry to promote Korean food in Europe. He learned his craft in Korea from a number of the most respected chefs and food producers in the country. Together with his Korean wife, Rejin, they are the authors of “Our Korean Kitchen”, a best seller of 2015.

Jay Rayner with Tim Anderson

Since winning Masterchef in 2011 Tim Anderson has carved out his dream career in food, working as a freelance chef, food writer and consultant. He is also a regular presenter on Jamie Oliver’s Food Tube and Drinks Tube, as well as a staple of this Radio 4 food panel show. His restaurant Nam Ban, in Brixton, has now spread to another in Covent Garden. He is a keen advocate of Japanese cuisine and dining.

Sophie Wright is an English chef, one of the youngest stars of British cuisine, and author of two cookery books. While training Sophie entered many national and international culinary competitions and is still a regular competitor. Her new company, Sophie Wright Catering, capitalises on her experience catering for private events both in the UK and Europe.

Her first book, “Easy Peasy”, won the Gourmand easy cookbook of the year award in 2008 and her second “Home at 7, Dinner at 8” was released in March 2011.

Jay Rayner is a most professional presenter. He is a writer, of both fiction and non-fiction, and became a food critic in 1999. He also has his own jazz quartet. The tone of the programme, featuring Japanese and Korean culinary experiences, was of an East Asian nature. This style of cooking is becoming more popular as the growth in the idea of healthy diet and culture with clean eating becomes mainstream.

The audience were offered the chance to ask questions of the panel. The varied questions included “if you drop an item of food on the floor is the five second rule applied?” in that you have five seconds to retrieve the food dropped. All the panellists admitted they had done it!

Another was what beverage is best before bedtime. Various and historical answers included beef tea, White Russian and chai tea but my favourite was Malaysian hot chocolate made with condensed milk.

Also an interesting question was “why do you like cooking?” Some of the answers were that it is about the senses, nostalgia, a window into different cultures, a relaxing process and of course greed.

Annie’s last comment was “everybody has to eat”! Its a good show, try not to miss it. It’s on BBC Radio 4 on Saturday, February 8 at 10:30am and again on Tuesday, February 11 at 3pm.

Image Credits: David Angell .

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