The Secret Life Of Welsh Food

Episodes

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Cake2019032120190324 (RW)Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the social history and culture of Welsh food. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

In this first programme of the new series he concentrates on the subject of cake. He meets Emma Jayne Morris a world champion in the relatively new field of cake art. From her home in Cwmdare, Emma has produced edible creations ranging from a life size Indian dancer to a chocolate-pasted model of War Horse. She tells Simon how her talent is taking her across the world, exhibiting her amazing cakes and teaching others how to create their own ambitious bakes.

Simon also talks to the Welshwoman who moved to California and adapted the traditional Welsh cake for the American market and finds out how a Llandeilo bakery makes bara brith on a huge scale.

Food writer Simon Wright explores the social history and culture of Welsh food.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

Curry2019040420190407 (RW)Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the place of food in Welsh culture. Focusing on a single topic each week, he explores its historical and contemporary influences. This week his subject his curry.

He discovers how Welsh people have warmed to the spicy culinary traditions of India since the 19th century and goes in search of Wales’s oldest Indian restaurant. He meets Mymuna Mohamood who tells him curry can be African too - she describes the part it plays in her Welsh-Somalian family life. He meets Geeta Mannari who settled in the Rhondda in the late 1970s with her GP husband. Geeta introduces Simon to her home-cooking and describes how she initially struggled to find the ingredients to make her delicious southern Indian dishes.

Simon also visits Anand George, the award-winning chef from Kerala who has made his home in Wales and fused the culinary traditions of his Indian roots and adopted country. Anand demonstrates how to make the perfect chicken curry from scratch.

Simon Wright explores the culture of food in Wales. This week, curry.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

Foraging2019041120190414 (RW)Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the social history and culture of Welsh food. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

In this final episode his topic is foraging. Simon takes a walk on the wild side with chef and forager Matt Powell. The pair take a journey through Pembrokeshire - gathering enough ingredients from the hedgerows, shoreline and woods to create a series of meals through the day.
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“I love foraging, it’s food for free!” Matt explains. “I’m always excited when I come across a new place to forage. A woodland, a meadow, a hedgerow, a cove. All are like treasure troves with fine food the prize.”

We hear how Matt learned to live off the land in his childhood. “Learning about wild plants and food came naturally at a young age. I was taught by my late grandparents who picked berries and grew their own vegetables. Food has always been a huge part of my family life. Working closely with the seasons and almost completely in tune with Mother Nature means I have an understanding of and respect for everything nature can provide.”

Simon also meets forager and author Jessica Seaton, who prepares a dish using wild garlic and fungi expert Phil Roberts who advises on the most challenging form of foraging - mushroom-picking.

Food writer Simon Wright explores the social history and culture of Welsh food.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

Welsh Rarebit2019032820190331 (RW)Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the social history and culture of Welsh food. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

In this episode he concentrates on Welsh Rarebit, exploring the folklore and stories behind its origins and how it is much more than “cheese on toast”. He tracks how it has transformed itself from a humble wholesome snack to a delicacy on the table of top restaurants.
Simon visits the International Welsh Rarebit Centre in Defynnog, sources ingredients at top Welsh cheesemaker Hafod in Lampeter and asks leading Swansea-born chef Jonathan Woolway to show him how to cook the Welsh Rarebit Jonathan serves to diners at the legendary St John’s restaurant in London.

Food writer Simon Wright explores the social history and culture of Welsh food.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

01Milk2016010220160103 (RW)
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Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at the historical, cultural and contemporary Welsh influences of everyday food and drink. The first programme focuses on milk.

Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at the Welsh influences of everyday food and drink.

Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at the Welsh influences of everyday food and drink.

02Bacon2016010920160113 (RW)
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Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at the historical, cultural and contemporary Welsh influences of everyday food and drink. In this programme, the focus is on bacon.

Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at bacon.

Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at the historical, cultural and contemporary Welsh influences of everyday food and drink. In this programme, the focus is on bacon.

04Chips2016012320160127 (RW)
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Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at the historical, cultural and contemporary Welsh influences of everyday food and drink. In this programme, the focus is on chips.

Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at chips.

Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at chips.

04 LASTChips2016012320160124 (RW)Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at the historical, cultural and contemporary Welsh influences of everyday food and drink. In this programme, the focus is on chips.

Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at chips.

0101Milk2016010220160103 (RW)
20160106 (RW)
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Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at the historical, cultural and contemporary Welsh influences of everyday food and drink. The first programme focuses on milk.

Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at the history, culture and contemporary uses of milk.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

0101Milk20180121Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at the history, culture and contemporary uses of milk.
0102Bacon2016010920160113 (RW)
20160818 (RW)
20160820 (RW)
20170413 (RW)
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Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at the historical, cultural and contemporary Welsh influences of everyday food and drink. In this programme, the focus is on bacon.

Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at bacon.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

0103Beer2016011620160117 (RW)
20160120 (RW)
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Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at beer.

Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at the historical, cultural and contemporary Welsh influences of everyday food and drink. In this programme, the focus is on beer.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at beer.

0104Chips2016012320160124 (RW)
20160127 (RW)
20160901 (RW)
20160903 (RW)
Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at chips.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

0104 LASTChips2016012320160124 (RW)
20160127 (RW)
20160901 (RW)
20160903 (RW)
Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at chips.

Restaurateur Simon Wright looks at the historical, cultural and contemporary Welsh influences of everyday food and drink. In this programme, the focus is on chips.

02Bread20171126Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright tells the story of bread in Wales.

Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink, revealing the undiscovered riches of our culinary culture and inspiring others to try it. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and drink and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

02Coffee20170504Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright examines Wales's relationship with coffee.
02Coffee20171203Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright examines Wales's relationship with coffee.

Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink, revealing the undiscovered riches of our culinary culture and inspiring others to try it. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and drink and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

02Faggots20170427Simon Wright examines how the humble faggot has become a Welsh delicacy.
02Faggots20171119Simon Wright examines how the humble faggot has become a Welsh delicacy.

Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink, revealing the undiscovered riches of our culinary culture and inspiring others to try it. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and drink and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

02Pop20170420Simon Wright reveals how Wales led the way in the British fizzy drinks industry.
02Pop20171112Simon Wright reveals how Wales led the way in the British fizzy drinks industry.

Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright reveals how Wales led the way in the British fizzy drinks industry.
Simon, a food writer and restaurateur, explores the social history of Welsh food and drink, revealing the undiscovered riches of our culinary culture and inspiring others to try it. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and drink and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

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Simon Wright reveals how Wales led the way in the British fizzy drinks industry.

In the first of a new four part series, food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright reveals how Wales led the way in the British fizzy drinks industry.

Simon, a food writer and restaurateur, explores the social history of Welsh food and drink, revealing the undiscovered riches of our culinary culture and inspiring others to try it. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and drink and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink, revealing the undiscovered riches of our culinary culture and inspiring others to try it. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and drink and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

0202Bread2017011420170115 (RW)
20170119 (RW)
20171126 (RW)
Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright tells the story of bread in Wales.

Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink, revealing the undiscovered riches of our culinary culture and inspiring others to try it. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and drink and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

0203Coffee2017012120170504
20170122 (RW)
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Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright examines Wales's relationship with coffee.

Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink, revealing the undiscovered riches of our culinary culture and inspiring others to try it. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and drink and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

0204Faggots2017012820170129 (RW)
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Simon Wright examines how the humble faggot has become a Welsh delicacy.

Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink, revealing the undiscovered riches of our culinary culture and inspiring others to try it. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and drink and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

0204 LASTFaggots2017012820170427
20170129 (RW)
20170202 (RW)
20170427 (RW)
20170429 (RW)
Simon Wright examines how the humble faggot has become a Welsh delicacy.

Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink, revealing the undiscovered riches of our culinary culture and inspiring others to try it. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and drink and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

0320171028Food writer Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink.
032/4 Wine20171014Food writer Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink.

Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink, revealing the undiscovered riches of our culinary culture and inspiring others to try it. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and drink and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

This week his focus is wine. He begins with the remarkable story of the Castell Coch vineyard which was created by the third Marquis of Bute in the 1870s. With the help of historian Phil Carradice, Simon discovers how the vineyards of Castell Coch, and later Sully, produced the only commercially grown wine in the whole of Britain for nearly 40 years.

Wine writer Neil Cammies brings Simon up to date with an overview of the current Welsh wine scene and sends him to Ancre Hill, the award-winning vineyard in Monmouth which specialises in biodynamic wine. Here Simon meets Ancre Hill's Richard Morris, who explains the science behind making wine in this way.

Simon also demonstrates the art of wine-tasting and travels to the Loire Valley to see what the French connoisseurs make of Welsh wine.

033/4 Honey20171021Food writer Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink.

Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink, revealing the undiscovered riches of our culinary culture and inspiring others to try it. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and drink and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

This week his focus is honey. He begins his journey through this ancient foodstuff by meeting Dinah Sweet, the queen bee of the Welsh honey-making scene. Dinah - who also makes mead and keeps hives on her smallholding on Caerphilly mountain - explains how bee-keeping is thriving in Wales.

In Carmarthenshire, Simon dons protective gear to get up close and personal with the thousands of bees at work in the 60 hives of Gwenyn Gruffydd. Here Gruffydd Rees takes Simon through the process of making raw honey... once the bees have stopped attempting to sting his microphone.

At Cardiff University, Simon talks to Professor Les Baillie about the ground-breaking work his team are doing in the quest to create "Welsh Manuka" honey with healing properties. And he also finds out how the researchers are working on a honey-based health drink and honey beer.

Finally, Simon puts some of the honey he has gathered on his travels to delicious use as he makes a quick and simple ice-cream flavoured with the finest raw Welsh honey.

03Honey20180107
03Pies20171028
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03Seaweed20171210Food writer Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food, starting with seaweed

Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink, revealing the undiscovered riches of our culinary culture and inspiring others to try it. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and drink and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

In this first programme of the new series he explores the story of seaweed in a Welsh context. Trawling through the archive, he discovers the rich history of laverbread production and how this dish of boiled seaweed has progressed from family fare sold in Welsh markets to a culinary delicacy served at top restaurants.

Simon also explores how we have moved beyond this iconic Welsh dish to give other types of seaweed a contemporary twist. He meets Jonathan Williams of the Pembrokeshire Beachfood Company to discuss Jonathan’s innovative approach to seaweed and how customers respond to his recipes at the coastal Cafe Mor.

He visits Selwyn’s Seaweed and discovers how a family firm that has farmed seaweed in Penclawdd for generations has found a new market for it through its production of nutritious seaweed snacks – championed by Jamie Oliver and food critic Tom Barker-Bowles.

And finally Simon does some coastal foraging of his own, challenging top Welsh chef Scott Davies to concoct a special dish with the fruits of his labours. But has Simon’s rummaging among the rockpools produced the right kind of seaweed for a delicious meal...

03Wine20171217
0301Seaweed2017100720171008 (RW)
20171210 (RW)
Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink, revealing the undiscovered riches of our culinary culture and inspiring others to try it. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and drink and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

In this first programme of the new series he explores the story of seaweed in a Welsh context. Trawling through the archive, he discovers the rich history of laverbread production and how this dish of boiled seaweed has progressed from family fare sold in Welsh markets to a culinary delicacy served at top restaurants.

Simon also explores how we have moved beyond this iconic Welsh dish to give other types of seaweed a contemporary twist. He meets Jonathan Williams of the Pembrokeshire Beachfood Company to discuss Jonathan’s innovative approach to seaweed and how customers respond to his recipes at the coastal Cafe Mor.

He visits Selwyn’s Seaweed and discovers how a family firm that has farmed seaweed in Penclawdd for generations has found a new market for it through its production of nutritious seaweed snacks – championed by Jamie Oliver and food critic Tom Barker-Bowles.

And finally Simon does some coastal foraging of his own, challenging top Welsh chef Scott Davies to concoct a special dish with the fruits of his labours. But has Simon’s rummaging among the rockpools produced the right kind of seaweed for a delicious meal...

Food writer Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food, starting with seaweed

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

0302Wine2017101420171015 (RW)
20171217 (RW)
Food writer Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink.

Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink, revealing the undiscovered riches of our culinary culture and inspiring others to try it. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and drink and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

This week his focus is wine. He begins with the remarkable story of the Castell Coch vineyard which was created by the third Marquis of Bute in the 1870s. With the help of historian Phil Carradice, Simon discovers how the vineyards of Castell Coch, and later Sully, produced the only commercially grown wine in the whole of Britain for nearly 40 years.

Wine writer Neil Cammies brings Simon up to date with an overview of the current Welsh wine scene and sends him to Ancre Hill, the award-winning vineyard in Monmouth which specialises in biodynamic wine. Here Simon meets Ancre Hill's Richard Morris, who explains the science behind making wine in this way.

Simon also demonstrates the art of wine-tasting and travels to the Loire Valley to see what the French connoisseurs make of Welsh wine.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

0303Honey2017102120171022 (RW)
20180107 (RW)
Food writer Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink.

Food writer and restaurateur Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink, revealing the undiscovered riches of our culinary culture and inspiring others to try it. Taking a single theme in each programme, he journeys from the past to the present, examining how the Welsh have produced, cooked, eaten and related to food and drink and surveys the most interesting developments in the current culinary scene.

This week his focus is honey. He begins his journey through this ancient foodstuff by meeting Dinah Sweet, the queen bee of the Welsh honey-making scene. Dinah - who also makes mead and keeps hives on her smallholding on Caerphilly mountain - explains how bee-keeping is thriving in Wales.

In Carmarthenshire, Simon dons protective gear to get up close and personal with the thousands of bees at work in the 60 hives of Gwenyn Gruffydd. Here Gruffydd Rees takes Simon through the process of making raw honey... once the bees have stopped attempting to sting his microphone.

At Cardiff University, Simon talks to Professor Les Baillie about the ground-breaking work his team are doing in the quest to create "Welsh Manuka" honey with healing properties. And he also finds out how the researchers are working on a honey-based health drink and honey beer.

Finally, Simon puts some of the honey he has gathered on his travels to delicious use as he makes a quick and simple ice-cream flavoured with the finest raw Welsh honey.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.

0304Pies2017102820171029 (RW)
20180114 (RW)
Food writer Simon Wright explores the social history of Welsh food and drink.

Simon Wright explores the historical and cultural Welsh influences of foods and drinks.