Sacre Cordon Bleu

Alex Lowe reads from Michael Booth's account of his French culinary education, abridged by Libby Spurrier.



Michael enrols at Le Cordon Bleu, the most famous cookery school in Paris.


Autumn has arrived and the students of Le Cordon Bleu pay an educational visit to the vineyards outside Paris.

But the pursuit of knowledge is soon abandoned in favour of binge drinking.


The Basic Cuisine exam takes place in late autumn.

But will Michael remember the dishes, let alone the ingredients, without a recipe book in sight?


The students of Le Cordon Bleu make their professional catering debut at the Musee d'Orsay.

Crossing a room with a tray full of canapes proves rather more challenging than they thought.

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Michael's nine months at Le Cordon Bleu are nearly over.

But he still faces the Superior Cuisine exam, his toughest test yet.

Can he trust the appointed kitchen assistant, his nemesis Paul?