Food, Politics, & Society: Social Theory and the Modern Food System – out now!

I'm excited to say that the co-authored book that my Birkbeck colleagues and I have been working on has now been published. Thank you, University of California Press, for shepherding us through the process and producing such a handsome volume. Thank you, too, to my wonderful colleagues: Alex Colas, Jason Edwards, and Sami Zubaida. They… Continue reading Food, Politics, & Society: Social Theory and the Modern Food System – out now!

‘Return from the Market’ by Paul Gavarni

Yesterday I saw for the first time this group of prints made by Paul Gavarni (1804-1866), published as a series in 1856, and part of a bigger group of ‘masks and faces’ that were published in L’Illustration in 1852 (volume 19). They give a savage and scathing commentary on the social and economic divisions in… Continue reading ‘Return from the Market’ by Paul Gavarni

Why Borough Market Makes the World a Better Place

Four days after the attacks on London Bridge and at Borough Market, the Market is still cordoned off. This beautiful public space, at the heart of my local community - and the global food community - with its huge population of residents, workers and visitors, remains at the epicentre of the painstaking and important work… Continue reading Why Borough Market Makes the World a Better Place

The Cosmonauts’ Dining Table

After years of research and diplomacy - and unimaginable feats of transport and exhibition construction - the London Science Museum’s new show, Cosmonauts: Birth of the Space Age, is at last underway. Besides setting the record straight on the USSR’s pre-eminence in the development of space travel, Cosmonauts brilliantly expresses not only the technological prowess… Continue reading The Cosmonauts’ Dining Table

Historic cooking class in London

I'm very excited to have been asked to give a talk and run a workshop at the forthcoming Just Festival Westminster, taking place in London from 10th - 21st June 2015. First, details of the workshop: 14th June, 15:30 - 18:30 COOKING AND EATING THE PAST This workshop is a combination of a short illustrated… Continue reading Historic cooking class in London

Space food anniversaries: the first sandwich in space

Last week the world commemorated fifty years since the first space walk. Today we should be rejoicing in the less known - but for space food enthusiasts far more significant - 50th anniversary of the very first Earth food-as-we-know-it to appear in the United States' space programme: a corned beef sandwich. On 23rd March 1965… Continue reading Space food anniversaries: the first sandwich in space

The senses in space: Alexei Leonov and the first space walk

50 years ago today cosmonaut Alexei Leonov became the first human to conduct a spacewalk - or, less romantically, EVA (extra-vehicular activity) - when he left his Voshkod 2 spacecraft for an awe inspiring and stressful 12 minutes. This tremendous achievement paved the way for much of what became possible in space in subsequent years.… Continue reading The senses in space: Alexei Leonov and the first space walk

Dining with Thomas More

Thomas More’s reputation for asceticism is clearly reflected in the BBC’s new adaptation of Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall. In episode 2 Stephen Gardiner mutters over a dull and sparse-looking dinner at More’s house that there is absolutely no danger of the household Fool’s excitable behaviour resulting from too rich a diet; shortly afterwards, on the… Continue reading Dining with Thomas More

How to read a cookbook

Maybe, like me, you are one of those people whose shelves groan under the weight of their cookbook collection. So here’s a question: what do you use all those cookery books for? Easy! To find and compare recipes, to get inspired with new food ideas, to plan and dream about future meals – and to… Continue reading How to read a cookbook

Irn bru sorbet for Burns night

Irn bru may be one of those things you have to enjoy as a child – like marmite – to really develop a taste for it. Happily for me, I did, and in the right circumstances there’s little better than a cold, rusty orange, sweet, fizzy glass of it. It’s impossible to describe the taste.… Continue reading Irn bru sorbet for Burns night