Can they really be telling the truth?You can always tell how good the food is by how quickly the crew descend on the set afterwards. They never get bored of it.The people on your programmes always say the food is the most delicious they’ve ever tasted. And you must remember that people are obsessed by food in the same way as they think about sex all the time. You pick up that kind of vibe.Would you agree with the proverb: “Too many cooks have their own TV shows”?Cookery programmes are always going to be popular because they’re cheap. All you need is a basic set and a few recipes and you’re off. My father was a professional pianist so even when I was growing up, I was around showbiz people. I can’t think of anything better than cooking with a nice bit of soul music in the background.
Anything too fast, though, and you run the risk of cutting your finger off.Are you as over the top as you always seem to be on television? Is it an act?People presume that I’m the kind of person who walks around Sainsbury tossing a wok And most of the time I am I’m a buzzy, impetuous type. But I like to think my chest isn’t that bad.There are some who say that Ainsley Harriott is incapable of chopping an onion without behaving like a backing singer for The Temptations What do you say?(Loud rumblings of laughter)Too right That’s just the way I am – enthusiastic and energetic. I was quite excited.But you’re not exactly built likeLinford Christie, are you?I think that’s for other people to decide Let’s put it this way – I’m not 28 with a six- pack I’m 41 with two kids. Were you nervous?I’m a bit of an exhibitionist, if you must know. I didn’t buy it myself.You were in the news this week, for doing a `Full Monty’ strip for Children in Need. What advice would you give on the Great Egg Debate?The trick is to put the egg into just-simmering water and not to leave it longer than 12 minutes Any longer and the whites go grey.
However hard you like your eggs, don’t leave them for longer than 12 minutes.Most chefs would be embarrassed to admit that they owned a Delia Smith cook book Do you?I’ve got her Winter Collection Although I must admit it was a present. This is a bugger of a job and anyone who can make a career out of it gets my respect.Critics have accused Delia of patronising viewers for telling them how to boil eggs. He lives in South London with his wife Clare and their two children. Commentators claimed this week that Delia Smith is one of the most influential women in Britain What is her secret?
Twenty-five years of experience She has built up a following which you just can’t knock. Ainsley Harriott, who fronts Can’t Cook, Won’t Cook and competes in Ready, Steady, Cook, has recently launched a new range of ready-made foods for Marks & Spencer. TELEVISION CHEFS have been in the news this week with the announcement that Delia Smith’s cookery programme has boosted sales of eggs by 1.3 million a day. Whatever the solution, it would appear that rule from above is not it.Professor Lindsey Hughes is the author of `Russia in the Age of Peter the Great’ (Yale University Press, 1998).