Chiswick’s Gourmet Literati

We take a look at some of our local food writers and their work

Meet The Authors

Richard Johnson - British Street Food and Karen Liebriech - The Family Kitchen Garden, will be at Waterstones on Saturday 2nd July between 11am and 1pm as part of SavourCHISWICK food and drink festival.

For more information on the festival see, or @savourchiswick on Twitter.


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Chiswick is well known as a haven for food lovers and, evidently, the postcode of choice for those who love writing about it.

Whilst W4's eateries are regularly reviewed, our food authors are not so we thought we would address the balance by highlighting some local favourites and their work (in alphabetical order):

Lindsey Bareham started to cook seriously when she was asked to edit the restaurant section of Time Out. Over the years she's cooked most cuisines and most styles of food, learning as she went along. She wrote a daily after-work recipe for the London Evening Standard for eight years and currently writes the daily Dinner Tonight and Friday Masterclass for The Times T2. She also writes a monthly column for Saga Magazine. Author of twelve cookery books, her latest is Pasties, an appreciation and exploration of the Cornish pasty.

Lindsey enjoys cooking imaginative, seasonal food with simple but explicit instructions, making real food accessible to the most inexperienced cook. Her speciality is turning ordinary ingredients into something special. Lindsey's style is relaxed and easy, encouraging her readers to get stuck in rather than regard good food as the preserve of chefs and foodies. As an ex-restaurant critic and shopping sleuth, with a greedy interest in food, she is forever trying out new ingredients and combinations of food but a traditional cooking background provides a good balance of classic and experimental.

Diana Henry is the food writer for the Sunday Telegraph and has twice been named Cookery Writer of the Year by the Guild of Food Writers in 2007 and 2009. She is the author of six books including the much acclaimed Crazy Water, Pickled Lemons which was shortlisted for a Glenfiddich Award for best cookbook. Her other titles include Roast Figs, Sugar Snow, The Gastropub Cookbook, Cook Simple and most recently Food from Plenty which has been shortlisted for Food book of the Year by the Andre Simon Awards (announced in June 2011). She is a contributor to many magazines including Red, House and Garden, Sainsbury’s Magazine and Waitrose Kitchen.

Jane Hornby has cooked for as long as she can remember, and decided to make things official with food by training at Leith’s School of Food and Wine in 2003. After graduating she fulfilled a life-long dream and joined the team at BBC Good Food. There she spent six happy years writing, food styling, editing and working with some of the country’s top chefs, as well as editing seven of the BBC Books ‘101’ series. In 2009 she moved on to pastures new and have since been busily putting together her first cook book, What to Cook and How to Cook it (Phaidon Press), and writing and food styling for BBC Good Food and Olive.

Richard Johnson is an award-winning journalist and broadcaster living in London. His writing appears regularly in the Sunday Times Magazine and The Daily Telegraph, and he’s a contributing editor for Esquire. He has written and presented radio documentaries about everything from fatherhood to kitchen waste and exorcism, and is a regular contributor to Radio 4’s Food Programme. He has fronted several prime-time television series – including Full on Food and Kill It, Cook It, Eat It for the BBC – and is one of the judges on ITV’s Taste The Nation. He is currently launching his own food festival with a difference. See

Karen Liebreich - The Family Kitchen Garden - Five years ago Karen Liebreich, Jutta Wagner, Annette Wendland and others began to restore the neglected seventeenth-century kitchen garden at Chiswick House, bringing in hundreds of local schoolchildren to work and learn and garden and eat. This book is the fruit of that experience. With the emphasis on what will be fun to grow and useful for a family, it provides clear instructions on growing vegetables, fruit, herbs and cutting flowers, and month-by-month advice on what to do when. It notes 'child-friendly' vegetables such as potatoes (children enjoy searching in the soil for potato 'treasure') and peas (the seeds are large enough to handle easily) and gives tips on approaching gardening activities with children. There are also recipes using homegrown fruit and veg that kids (as well as adults) will want to make and eat - from oriental summer rolls and homemade ketchup to parsnip crisps and fruit ice lollies - and projects that are accessible to the whole family, such as building a ladybird nesting house and weaving a willow wigwam for climbing plants.

Bruce Poole – Bruce’s Cookbook ‘I only cook the kind of food I want to eat. Honest food, plain and simple. This is my cookbook.' The long awaited cookbook from Michelin-starred chef and owner of the award-winning La Trompette. Poole is widely acknowledged to be one of Britain's best chefs. Praise for his timeless, honest cooking has garnered countless column inches and the respect of the most discerning critics. His Michelin-starred London restaurant Chez Bruce has achieved many awards and accolades including, for the last six years, London's Favourite Restaurant in the Harden's Restaurant Guide. But, what speaks louder than stars (in Bruce's book anyway) is that his food is emphatically and wholeheartedly loved not only by his loyal patrons who come time and time again to eat at his table, but also those who make Chez Bruce a destination. Bruce's down to earth, honest and creative cooking features classic dishes without ego or chefy gimmicks, because it's all about food you actually want to eat.

It is no wonder that a cookbook from Bruce Poole has been so eagerly anticipated. In these pages you will find charming anecdotes and stories from the restaurants and, of course, the recipes Bruce wants you to cook at home. Spend time with them, love and enjoy them -- this is truly the best food you can cook in your kitchen. Bruce's Cookbook is a gift, read it, cook from it, treasure it. Recipes Include: - Slow roast shoulder of lamb with harissa, spiced pilaf rice and yoghurt - Boeuf Bourgignon with parsnip puree - Ceviche of salmon with creme fraiche and coriander - Potato gnocchi with butter, wilted sage and parmesan - Chocolate Souffle - Champagne and elderflower jelly with strawberries.

Jo Pratt is a food stylist, writer, presenter and home economist. As former food writer for ELLE magazine, writing and featuring in her own food pages, Jo has been Food Editor for GLAMOUR magazine for four years now.

Named as one of Waterstone’s “Authors for the Future”, her first book – The Nation’s Favourite Food was published by BBC Books in 2003, and her second book In The Mood For Food hit the shelves in February 2007 to rave reviews. Jo’s third book, In The Mood For Entertaining was published also by Penguin, summer 2009. Book number four is currently in the process of being written. You can see Jo in action here.

Fran Warde has managed to fit more into her life than she has probably cooked hot dinners. A girl, who has literally worked all over the globe, on high seas and pastures green and white, she has done it all. This girl is not afraid of hard work. Every job she has taken on, she has given it her all and then moved on to the next challenge. It is now that she has found her metier in writing whilst bringing up her young family. She has finally come home to roost.

‘Go with your heart and flow and if you can’t always find the right ingredients, you must improvise.’ She believes that we should all be flexible in our approach to interpreting recipes. Obviously pastry, cakes, biscuits and soufflés need exact measurements but that is all. Fran tests her own recipes herself and it is then tested again by someone else at a shoot. She adds ‘It’s good having someone else be my conscience.’ She is firm believer in cooking being a form of relaxation. She wants nothing more than to teach people to cook easy food, be happy in their kitchens and to shop well. She feels that we are now as a nation very much more food aware. Fran believes the food hype ‘has educated people that there is more than steak and kidney pie out there’.

June 16, 2011