Thought for Food

Thought for Food

This month, our celebrity chef Rosemary Shrager is talking parties, prunes and putting off exercise…


I do hope you all had a wonderful Christmas; I spent it with my family and then went off on a short break to unwind!

I always find New Year’s Eve parties such an anticlimax. You have to stay up and see the midnight in, and by then I am normally way past my bedtime and exhausted.

One of the best parties was when I cooked a Chinese steamboat. For those who don’t know what this is, it’s a copper or metal funnel with a channel going around like a cake mold, in the channel you pour in chicken stock, then inside the funnel you put hot charcoal to heat the stock. You are then meant to start with small pieces of fish that you all cook yourself, then on to prawns, slivers beef, vegetables, anything you want, you have the usual dips etc. Then you end up drinking the stock with the most wonderful flavour. I also make lots of Dim Sums with it like dumplings, spring rolls etc. Our local Tunbridge Wells Chinese restaurant, Dragon Tan does it, if you ask them and give them good notice.

Also Steamboat is incredibly healthy, which brings me onto another subject – the DIET. I hate the word diet, as people already know if they read my column regularly, it automatically conjours up failure. To me it’s your mindset and just feeling healthy and eating the right thing.

I started eating prunes to fill me up at that crucial time of feeling peckish and also yearning for something sweet. I cannot tell you how much it has helped; I also use it in sauces and smoothies.

How it started: I am one of the ambassadors to the Californian prune board, representing 900 prune farmers in California. Through my testing and working for them I have discovered the benefits of prunes – apart from the obvious one! They really are a wonderful product. I can guarantee it will help anybody to lose weight as part of his or her new regime. I will be bringing out some healthy prune recipes soon.

In the meanwhile, exercise, is a bad word for me, I am so lazy with this. This is the area that I fall down on, I love my yoga, but again I’m always busy. I find the discipline hard for this, work always seems to get in the way and overtake. One day I will change. Even Mr Motivator tried to help me; we were having Skype calls together trying to get me going. He didn’t give up on me, I gave up on me. The one thing I do love is swimming, but I have yet to find a warm pool nearby where I could do some water aerobics.

Watching some of I’m a Celebrity at the end of last year brought back so many memories, it’s such a wonderful opportunity to do weird and wonderful things. It does seem rather a long time ago.

This has been a bit of a strange article – just putting my thoughts on paper! The book will come out one day…
Happy New Year and speak next month.