a cook who writes

The Christmas Chronicles

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N O T E S,  S T O R I E S  A N D  R E C I P E S  F O R  M I D W I N T E R.  I have always loved the winter months, with their crisp mornings, candlelight and promise of snow. The Christmas Chronicles is the story of my adoration of the cold months, my fondness for the winter landscape with its pale blue skies and bare trees; for autumn and winter baking and the season's rituals and feasting. At the heart of the book is Christmas, its fables, folklore and of course, its food.

There are over a hundred recipes for warming dinners, quick midweek meals and Christmas classics. There are midwinter cakes and baking, mincemeat and puddings, vegetarian suppers, the Christmas roasts, crisp winter salads, main course soups, pickles, chutney and marmalades.

A very personal stir-up of diary, memoir and cook book, here are stories of Bonfire Night and Halloween, of Christmases past and present, trips to the best Christmas Markets, shopping for decorations and how to choose The Tree. There are mincepies and malt loaf, winter drinks and Christmas wreaths, candlelight and carols. This is my celebration of the cold months from late autumn to well into the New Year, a day by day story of the winter solstice and its pleasures. I should add that if your idea of Christmas is all candy canes and fluffy kittens then this is not the book for you. (We should never forget that winter is as deadly as she is beautiful.) I have never enjoyed writing a book more than this.


Please note that there is a mistake in the recipe for Mince Pies. The quantity of flour in the pastry should  read 300g, not 175g. My apologies. 



Chronicles has been translated into German, Dutch and Russian.

450 pages.  Published on 19th October 2017. 

It is a pleasure to announce that In May 2018, The Christmas Chronicles was named winner of the Food Book of the Year in the 2018 Fortnum and Mason Awards. 

Christmas Chronicles is published in Britain by Fourth Estate (2017), as Culinaire Winterdagboek by Fontaine Uitgers (2018); by Dumont (Germany, 2018) as Das Winter Tage Buch and by (Moscow, 2018).