Why Delia Smith’s all wrong about cookbooks

Delia Smith says that cookery books are old hat in the era of the internet. Photo: Dominic Lipinski/

Delia Smith says that cookery books are old hat in the era of the internet. Photo: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire - Credit: PA

Opinion: Delia Smith has got it wrong - it's a case of 'the cookery book is dead, long live the cookery book', says Sharon Griffiths.

Delia Smith says she's not writing any more cookery books because cookbooks are dead. If we want a recipe, she says, we can just get it off the internet.

Well yes. If you're actually going to cook something and want to check ingredients or how long to roast a turkey to what to do with an artichoke, then internet first stop. Easy - even if you do get your screen or keyboard covered in flour.

But that's not what cookery books are for. Like reading a glossy fashion magazine when you live in chainstore clothes, or gawping at the house ads in Country Life, cookery books – like TV cookery programmes – are for ogling, gazing at, dreaming, drooling over the pictures, having a little escapist fun.

Really they're just food porn and maybe should be sold as fiction.


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We're buying more cookery books than ever and actually cooking less. Cookery books are very far from dead – because really, they've got very little to do with actual cooking.

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