Can you remember what the heck you were doing on this day five long, weary years ago? Sometimes I can barely remember what I was doing five minutes before, but that date in 2013 is etched into my memory. It had been a long time coming, well at least the thought had. I'd become a *little bit* obsessed with Fanny Cradock, especially the Cradock Cookery Programme part-work. I wanted to celebrate it, and her. somehow. I started this blog, hoping that she would be able to teach me some of her tricks. So, five years ago today, I quickly wrote the first post and hit 'publish' before I could think about it too much. So, in the five years since, what exactly has dear old Fanny taught me?
Number One - Fanny is always right. Never argue with her. Never veer from her instructions. Never query her methods. Never skip an ingredient (well, ok, I skipped all the meat, but you know what I mean). Never wonder why. No need to, Fanny is always right. I've published 277 posts in those five years. The recipes have always worked. The results have always been good, if a little surprising. The smile on my face has always been wide. Fanny has always been right. Always.
Number Two - above all, garnish and presentation. Fanny made this her mantra for the part-work. Recipes are one thing. Good ingredients are another. Technique is essential. It's all well and good making a sensational dish that you know people will enjoy, but if it doesn't also look spectacular then no-one will remember it. No-one will talk about it. No-one will rave about you. No-one will say Fanny was right. And she is always right. Garnish and presentation are key. And if that's retro-tastically over the top, more the better. Don't you agree?
Number Three - believe in yourself. Fanny did, extraordinarily so. She created herself to be the most fabulous Bon Viveur, the most celebrated television cook, the most widely published person across different genres. She's taught me to 'go for it'. Write lots, tell people about everything Fanny related. I've written this blog every week for five years. I've written articles, papers and presentations about Fanny. I've written my Masters dissertation about her, and will soon include her in my PhD. I'm writing a book. She'd be delighted (I hope). So am I. I love writing and I love spreading the word about Fanny, just as she always did. I hope you are enjoying reading it.
Number Four - if in any doubt about anything, think What Would Fanny Do (#WWFD)? It will be the best option, hands down. No contest. Remember, she is always right! She has never let me down. Not once. Number Five - if life gives you grapes and wine, squidge them up, make a jelly. Save some for the garnish and presentation. Add food colouring. Present it in a way that only Fanny could. Write about it, let the world know all about Fanny. She did. So do I. And I will, for years to come. I hope you'll still be joining me, and Fanny, for my next Fannyversary. And the next... and next... I *thought* I was obsessed five years ago. Little did I know. Oh dear...