2018 was a huge year for Tom Kerridge. As well as retaining a host of Michelin stars at his Marlow pubs, he opened his debut London restaurant, Kerridge’s Bar & Grill at the Corinthia, welcomed thousands to his annual Pub in the Park events and made countless television appearances.
As the year came to close, Kerridge added a book release to this list of achievements. Fresh Start has clear appeal to those making resolutions to get into the kitchen and produce dishes from scratch, rather than reaching for a ready meal or take-away menu.
Unlike the chef’s previous two releases, Lose Weight for Good and The Dopamine Diet, Fresh Start is not aimed at weight loss, but on breaking down the barriers between readers and the stove – be it a shortage of time or a lack of confidence.
Informal and relaxed, Kerridge is a great figurehead for such a drive. In the opening pages, he draws on his own experiences, acknowledging how easy it is to develop a habit of reaching for quick and easy comfort food, before speaking about his own commitment to eat more home-cooked meals as a family.
While this is not a health book – pies, ice-cream and a gooey chocolate truffle tart all feature – Kerridge is hoping it is something people will bear in mind as he encourages them to opt for his roasted winter sprout curry rather than a take-away tikka masala.
The 100 recipes, which will form the basis of a BBC Two series early this year, are divided into seven chapters, including ‘quick and easy meals’, ‘lighter dishes’, ‘veggie suppers’ and ‘batch cooking’.
They range from classic family suppers such as bangers and mash to more adventurous meals including baked sardines with carrot salad or Middle Eastern slow-cooked lamb.
Ingredients and instructions are all kept relatively simple and Kerridge’s priority is clearly to get families cooking and eating delicious meals together. His own reminiscing of peeling vegetables with his mum and desire to ensure his son, Acey, develops a good relationship with food shouldn’t fail to encourage readers to do just that.
Tom Kerridge’s Fresh Start, by Tom Kerridge (Bloomsbury Absolute, £26)
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