Many cookbooks feature a foreword by the author, particularly if the author is well known. And that’s nice – you get to understand what the author’s motivation is for writing that book. Then the usual format is to carry on through the rest of the book by filling it with appropriately chosen recipes and very often some beautiful photographs of the cooked food and maybe some preparation stages. No more stories, no more personal insights – just recipes and pretty pictures.
Not so with John Partridge’s There’s No Taste Like Home. It’s a fabulously unpretentious cookbook which features not only a foreword but also heart-warming anecdotes with each recipe so you really feel you get to know the man and how his cooking relates to his life growing up in Radcliffe near Manchester and the present with his husband Jon.
John Partridge says “ This is my taste of home. My pictures, my memories, my moments. Some old, some new, some borrowed, some stew! All the dishes in this book have been cooked at home in my kitchen – and some on the telly, too. Cooking the food from my past has helped me to live in the present.”
Now it may seem odd to be reviewing a cook book on this theatre website but we are big fans of actor John Partridge having seen and reviewed him in quite a few productions over time including, the fairly recent production of Cabaret (September 2019) when it came to Nottingham Theatre Royal and Curve Theatre in Leicester. We also had the pleasure of interviewing John on the telephone before the set up at Curve. Phone interview with John HERE. He was fascinating and spoke about this book back then as well as his times in Germany and the production of Cabaret playing the Emcee. Cabaret review HIER/ICI/HERE.
There’s No Taste Like Home has us aching to try out some of the recipes like Cheesy Mushroom Toast, Fish Pie Deluxe, Egg Custard Tart, Lancashire Hotpot, Wings, Ribs and Slaw, Beef and Guinness Stew, Chicken and Olive Tagine and even some of the ‘for fancy’ recipes including Pork Chops with Hasselback Potatoes and one day (when friends can visit again) go mad and make a Black Forest Gâteau. The joy of these recipes and many more in the book is that they sound totally straight forward and fuss-free and we love the design of the accompanying photos which have a creative quirk to them as well as a loving feel of nostalgia.
If there is one honest cook book written with lots of humour, reverence and love then There’s No Taste Like Home is it. We love it! To order your copy as ebook or hardback click any of the title links or the book image below.