Err, yes Pippa

She was widely ridiculed for her debut book – a collection of painfully obvious top tips for party-planning.

Now Pippa Middleton, the sister of the Duchess of Cambridge has risked further mockery by admitting she has not tested all the recipes in her new healthy cookery book herself.

Still, at least she appears to have read it, which is more than Naomi Campbell did with her novel (s?)

35 thoughts on “Err, yes Pippa”

  1. Yeah, but who’s the stupid one, here? Pippa – like Naomi Campbell – figured out they have a brand (to varying extents) and are just using that to cash in a bit. It’s no different from going to a Gordon Ramsay restaurant in which Gordon Ramsay isn’t the chef. They might make themselves look a bit silly in the process, but it probably nets them a bit of extra cash during their short time in the spotlight.

  2. Wasn’t she offered about $15m to star in a US porn film? If true, slightly interesting that she turned it down. Certainly disappointing.

  3. And? Go and ask Jamie Oliver or Nadiya Hussain the same question.

    These people are just brands. It’s like a celeb advertising watches or perfumes. There’s plenty of people out there who will write recipes (and frankly, probably do a better job). Then you stick their name and face on the cover.

    A healthy recipe book? Here you go:-

    1. Go to 2. Type in “healthy recipes” 3. Read them (including nutrition). 4. Make them. 5. If they taste good, bookmark them

    Seriously, unless you’ve taken an interest in a particular sort of cuisine, buying a cookbook except maybe a Good Housekeeping, Delia or one of Nigel Slater’s early books is just nuts.

  4. Hmm, “risked further mockery by admitting she has not tested all the recipes in her new healthy cookery book herself”. If you’re fronting something like this (or in Pippa’s case, rear-ending it?) I’m pretty sure you’re not meant to admit something like that. Or is she destruction-testing the adage about all publicity being good publicity?

  5. What BiW says.

    The whole celebrity chef thing is bollocks. Different ways for the sake of being different to cook bog-standard dishes. But for the most part, if wrapping a steak in a whale’s foreskin, burying it on a beach for a month and then using a flamethrower to cook it (a la Blumenthal) was the best way to cook steak, we’d have been doing it for hundreds of years.

  6. BiW has it spot on, as does the great Andrew C – between the Big Oven app (which I would recommend although it is from the US)and some cookbooks inherited from the 1970s I have not bought a cookbook for about 15 years – I have received some as gifts and ebayed them whenever they became too numerous. Most of them are a waste of time and teach dishes which even a trained chimp should be able to produce as a matter of course….

  7. It’s commonplace to observe, but worth remembering nevertheless, that Elizabeth David is worth reading simply for the pleasure of her prose.

  8. Bloke in Germany disturbingly close to Ely

    Most recipes are minimal variations on:
    – chop varying relative quantities of stuff up
    – throw it in a pot
    – simmer for 1 hour

    I can’t see that a Pippa recipe is going to be much worse than that.

  9. Bloke in Germany disturbingly close to Ely

    I forgot the optional fourth step:

    – add jar of Indian/Italian/Chinese/Thai flavouring.

  10. @Edward Lud

    “It’s commonplace to observe, but worth remembering nevertheless, that Elizabeth David is worth reading simply for the pleasure of her prose.”

    And Elizabeth Luard is a good modern equivalent.

    The glossy pic, plus sleb chef anecdote plus list of unfindable ingredients modern books are terrible.

  11. Bravefart

    I guess Male refugees are just expected to get on with dying quietly – what an article, even by the standards of the publication in question – it also begs the question – what isn’t a feminist issue?

  12. John Square,

    “The glossy pic, plus sleb chef anecdote plus list of unfindable ingredients modern books are terrible.”

    I don’t even think people cook with them. Because books based around the image of the chef isn’t a good way to organise cook books. You need books around a theme or a big general book.

    My books are things like Cooking of South West France or the Moro cookbook because they’re organised around the location. I want to cook something in that style, I open up and get ideas. If I just want to cook a particular recipe though, I mostly go online. I often use recipes from bloggers because you know it’s a favourite recipe for them, so probably very good.

  13. IIRC my mother had a recipe book that was about four inches thick and weighed a few kgs and had recipes for just about any dish a housewife would be called upon to make in the 1970s. I saw it in several houses I’d visit in the 1980s, and although I doubt it contained many foreign or exotic dishes, I don’t think it was endorsed by any celebrity chef either.

  14. Tim Newman,

    I’d say Good Housekeeping Cookery Book, although that’s more like 1.5″. Very popular, very reliable. If there’s one cookbook you should own, it’s that.

  15. I was a pretty good cook once. Still do prep work and plan recipes with the wife. And my cookbooks could probably be measured in metres – have probably about 30 of them in printed form and a hundred or so in pdf format or mobi format.
    And probably half the books I get from the library are cookbooks, trying things and copying particular recipes into my folders. Multiple folders.
    So a fair number of recipes available.
    And the ones I cook or plan and prep are usually pretty good.
    We eat well, not always much time to prepare but knowing what will work with what for our own tastes comes from experience. Can stick a bunch of things in slow cooker or produce a wonderful 5 course meal – learnt mostly from cookbooks.
    Handy things to have – lots of things in cookbooks you don’t see on a particular site.

  16. TN

    “I think it might have been the Hamlyn one, although it swelled to 4 inches thick because of all the clippings my mother stuffed between the pages.”

    I dread to think how many of my favourite childhood meals have been lost in the mists of time as they were originally hand-copied from a page of woman’s weekly* (or similar), before being tucked into a single cookbook that has since been misplaced.

    Astonishing that my mum didn’t know about data management or even simple backup routines.

    *…or from notes for a cookery course she attended when we moved to HK in ’78. Recipes were basically an oral tradition when I were a lad.

  17. I’ve a Readers’ Digest Cookery Year a long forgotten g/f left’s done me well. Good selection of basic recipes, seasonally themed but, usefully, a basic go-to on cooking techniques & how to deal with a large range of ingredients. Sort of book would take you from the unsure how to boil water stage up to half decent cooking skills with most things you might get confronted with. Includes skinning rabbits, I seem to remember.

  18. . . . risked further mockery by admitting she has not tested all the recipes in her new healthy cookery book herself.

    the only people who should be up for mockery are the people who bought the book. They didn’t buy it because of this woman’s credentials, they bought it because her sister married into the nobility, and they wanted a piece of that fantasy.

    Phillipa (WTF would allow anyone except close friends and immediate family to call herself ‘Pippa’?) is just cashing in on that. Same as every athlete and celebrity shilling garbage for pay.

  19. I like how Wikipedia lists her ‘occupation’

    “Socialite, author, columnist”

    I guess we can see how much value people place on the ‘author and columnist’ career.

  20. I have several recipe books – very useful, so I only have to remember the amendments that I have sussed from trying the recipes that looked nice. Maybe a mediaeval housewife might want to renember every detail but I don’t. I also have some of my great-grandmother’s recipes that don’t need amendment because they actually work (the cakes are very popular with my wife’s office colleagues).

    However for beginners I recommend “Cooking in a bedsitter” which my big sister gave me when I moved from digs into a converted attic in 1971 – the only reason that I do not still use it is that my wife gave it to the daughter of a friened of the family.

  21. On leaving for university my long-departed dear mother gave me a copy of ‘Cooking in a bedsitter’ and told me not to get any women pregnant and if I did to think seriously before getting married.

    A wise and loving mother

  22. The only cookbook I use on a regular basis is Delia’s Complete. And that’s really only to get the canonical version of a dish so I can play with it. One of the best programmes on the (US) Food Network was Alton Brown’s Good Eats, because it taught techniques rather than recipes.

  23. Bloke in Germany disturbingly close to Ely


    But what you then did with the squirrel skins, is what we are really interested in.

  24. My aunt who along with her main job filled in teaching home economics gave me a crash course before I went to college along with a cooking for students slim cookbook that covered the basics (focusing on value meals that could be stretched and uses for cheaper cuts). To this very day she is one of my wife’s favourite people, especially as she also covered ironing and basic sewing.

  25. Dennis the Peasant – “In the final analysis, little else matters.”

    Except perhaps in matters relating to cook books. I bet that Nigella Lawson does not try all the recipes in her books either but she has the sort of ar$e I would trust. Ms Middleton? Come on. No great chef can have an ar$e like that. She doesn’t cook because she doesn’t eat.

    The question is whether it is better to marry the ar$e or the cook? The cooking lasts.

  26. Lots of oddballs here. Pippa has the arse of a ten year old boy. I’m not advocating the gross out that is a Kardashian arse… but J-Lo’s works for me….

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