May 23, 2011
Ken Hom was born and raised in Tucson, Arizona – his Cantonese parents emigrated to the US in the 1920s. Ken learnt to cook from the age of eleven when he started working in his uncle’s Chinese restaurant in Chicago after school and at weekends. In those days he earned around the equivalent of 30p per hour.In order to help pay his University fees he gave cooking lessons which proved so popular that he was recommended to the Culinary Academy.
When the BBC was looking for a Chinese chef to produce a new series he was recommended by Madhur Jaffrey who had seen him giving lessons in California.Ken is now regarded as the world’s leading authority in Chinese cookery and has cooked for many heads of state.
Keith Floyd was born at an early age and educated at Wellington School in Somerset. In a chequered career, he was an army officer, a journalist, a dishwasher, a bartender, a cook, a restaurateur, with restaurants in France, Spain, Britain and currently Thailand. He wrote at least 25 books, presented about 20 television series, which are still being shown in over 40 countries worldwide and had recently toured the country with his award winning one man show ‘Floyd Uncorked’. He lived in Provence near Avignon.
During his career, Keith wrote more than 25 books and presented about 20 television series, where he captivated viewers with his special brand of humour. Keith died at his partner's Dorset home in September 2009 after a lengthy illness.
Born in Folkestone, Kent, Phil Vickery trained at restaurants in the Lake District before working at Gravetye Manor in West Sussex and Restaurant 74 in Canterbury. Phil’s TV career starter after filling in once for Keith Floyd on the Breakfast Programme, and over the past 15 years he has appeared on the BBC ‘Holiday Programme’, ‘Ready Steady Cook’, ‘Proof Of The Pudding’, his own series ‘Phil Vickery’s Pudding Club’ and of course ‘This Morning’, presenting live and pre-recorded cookery items.
Between his TV work and writing – Phil’s written 8 books, including his most recent, ‘Seriously Good Gluten-Free Cookery’ and ‘Seriously Good Gluten-Free Baking’ – he finds time to farm and spends many hours working on the land and with his livestock.