This is for and about home cooks - the women all over the the world (and through the centuries) who put dinner on the table every night. They know how to cook quickly, easily, economically, healthily and satisfyingly whether for one or a dozen.

Part memoir, part diary of shopping, cooking, reading and thinking about putting supper on the table, by a former fashion/design writer/consultant whose secret love has always been food.  


Best at Chelsea: Vegetables and Herbs

Silver Gilt Medal to Tom Smith Plants

Silver Gilt Medal to Tom Smith Plants

The spectacular, huge gardens and colourful blooms are what most focus on at The Chelsea Flower Show every year, but my eye is caught - season after season - by the lush and often whimsical presentation of everyday vegetables and herbs.

Tom Smith Plants was awarded a Silver Gilt Medal for its simple groupings of single plants - turnips, say, or beans - in baskets or boxes, like bunches of flowers, or clambering lushly up slender strips of trellis, while herbs cluster in little earthenware pots like flowering plants.

Most playful were the designs for allotments, dedicated vegetable gardens recycling metal barrels, bathtubs and pots as containers, or with joyously colourful sheds.

While Jim Lawrence, in its barn conversion display stand, used simple square boxes of herbs if they were flowers - mixing textures and colours - in a minimalist, contemporary style.

Carne en Salsa Meson Poqueira - Easy Spanish Pork Loin in Almond Sauce

Quick & Easy Prawns Smothered in Onions