You ask the questions: (Such as: Ed Baines, as a chef, can you give me a recipe for seduction - and is it true that Kate Moss only ever eats salad?)

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Ed Baines, 30, lives in Brixton, London. His new television series Ed Baines Entertains is currently on Carlton. His Carlton Food Network series Lunch with Ed Baines will be repeated on CFN in September. Baines began his career in catering in 1986 with a two-year apprenticeship with Anton Mosimann. In 1992 he became the official chef for Armani and dabbled in modelling. He has also worked at London's Bibendum and the River Cafe and has been head chef at Daphne's. He now runs his own restaurant Randall & Aubin in Brewer Street, Soho and has been dubbed the "It Chef". His celebrity customers include model Kate Moss, Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels director, Guy Ritchie, and pop stars, Noel and Liam Gallagher. In September he opens up an Anglo-French restaurant The Ifield in Ifield Road, London.

Do you find yourself getting hungry when you are cooking?

Janine Fuller, Cambridge

No I don't. When you're cooking, the smells going up your nose and tricks your body into thinking you're not hungry. You only realise how starving you are when you're out of the kitchen and on your way home.

Have you ever had food poisoning from your own cooking or anyone else's food?

Gavin Robinson by e-mail

I've never poisoned myself and I've never been poisoned in Britain, but I have been poisoned in Egypt, Thailand and Spain. They are mistakes I will never make again. In Egypt always eat what the locals eat. I had a pizza and spent four days being sick alone in a hotel room in which the air-conditioning wasn't working. In Thailand I had shellfish when it was very hot. NEVER eat shellfish when it is very hot! In Spain I had mussels and spent another four days throwing up. Even as I was eating them I thought something was wrong. Always trust your sense of smell.

What's the most unusual request a customer has made (and did you cater for them)?

Valerie Hanning by e-mail

At Daphne's we had an American customer who came in with his wife regularly. They always ordered steak, which she had as rare as possible and he had as burnt as possible. When he first came and asked for well done, we did it well done and he sent it back. He said he wanted it cooked more, and we cooked it more and he sent it back, until finally it was just a piece of charcoal.

What do the Gallaghers eat? And can you reveal any other dining secrets of the stars?

Edward Chambers, Oxford

Food! Caroline Aherne won't eat anything green. Guy Ritchie says the less you do to food the better. He thinks I'm a ponce because I have sauce and stuff.

Are you a Delia Smith fan?

Sophie Martin, Milton Keynes

I think she interprets professional chef's recipes very well.

Biggest flop (in the kitchen)?

Thomas Henley, Brighton

Cooking with Cliff Richard on a Channel 5 programme and I was doing brill en papillote with potato rosti. Confidently, I announced that I was going to flip the rosti like a pancake and threw it up in the air. Most went on the camera, the rest on the cooker. Cliff wasn't impressed and the audience found it most amusing.

Who would you like to cook for?

Jessie Cochrane, Glasgow

Eddie Irvine [Formula One racing driver] and his entire entourage of girlfriends.

Is it true that one of the characters of Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels is based on you?

Andy Pilkington by e-mail

None of them are me, totally, but of course a writer

will gather experience from what's around him. I hung around with Guy Ritchie and two other friends, and I'm a chef, so there is a bit of me in there.

Best and worst memories of your modelling days?

Suzanne Beech, London, W6

Best - it was short-lived. Worst was being criticized by photographers and agents saying my chest wasn't big enough. I did one job for sunglasses because he specially wanted my look but then I never made it to any more castings.

What's your recipe for seduction?

Julie David, Petworth

Infuse oysters with rose petals and then eat lots of pasta. You need loads of carbohydrate!

If you were condemned to eating just one food for the rest of your life, what would it be and why?

Della Gregory, Wilts

Fish. Because I would live a long and healthy life.

Does Kate Moss just eat salad?

Catherine Cooper, Ipswich

I don't know. In my restaurant she eats beans. I haven't taken her out, so I don't know what she eats.

Is a volatile temperament a prerequisite for a successful chef?

Johnny Fowler,


Yes - it comes with the job. You usually work under a lot of pressure and expectations and the demands are enormous. Being like that motivates people.

What is the most fashionable ingredient at the moment?

Jilly Waller by e-mail


Why aren't you fat?

Rachel Roberts, Brighton

Because I eat well. I try not to eat anything that comes out of any packet, just fresh food.

Is Mum's cooking best?

Sally Seward, Penzance

Yes. She always bought good ingredients - organic meat and vegetables - and there was always fresh food to eat. But when you opened the fridge there was never anything that you could eat without cooking, except fruit. So I learned to cook and my brother used to eat cake-mix if mum wasn't around.

Do you ever eat at McDonald's or Burger King?

Larry Rodgers by e-mail


Given the choice, would you rather spend your afternoons water-skiing or cooking?

Alan Walker, Surrey

A bit of both, really. A BBQ at the side of a lake in Greece would be my idea of paradise.

When did you last eat a supermarket ready meal?

Quentin Holmes,


When my son wants meat, he wants it straight away, and the other day he needed something immediately so I got some spare ribs from Tesco's. But even then I managed to burn them.

I'm not very good with convenience foods. One day I was round at my partner's flat and he and the guy he lives with, who is one of our investors, were not there. I was completely starving and the only thing they had was fish fingers - they only ever have fish fingers. The kitchen was spotless, the grill had never been used and I thought perhaps I can use the microwave, but I'm not very good with them either; or maybe you shouldn't microwave fish fingers. Anyway they came out about one inch long and looked horrible. But I was so hungry I stuffed a couple in anyway. Just at that point my partner and his flatmate came back and I really didn't want them to see me with these disgusting fish things, so I shoved them in my pockets and pretended the strange fishy smell came from somewhere else! I had to surreptitiously lose them on the way home, dropping them from my pocket like Hansel and Gretel.

Is the customer always right?

Nick Wright, London N6

Yes. As long as the delivery of their complaint is well mannered. Offensive customers are not acceptable.

Should cooking be an integral part of the school curriculum?

Louise Ryder, London EC1

Yes it should be. But more than that, I think there should be some kind of "life class" where you learn about taxes and bills and insurance and mortgages and cooking and all the things you have to do in the real world and which you leave school totally unprepared for.

If you were marooned on a desert island and you had to eat someone to survive, who you most like it to be and why?

Richard Evans, Newcastle

Victor Lewis-Smith [Evening Standard Television Critic] can go straight in my pot. I'd really like to cook that man, though I'm not sure I could eat him, I think he'd be rather bitter. I suppose a nice plump young girl would be favourite.

Is it true that chefs spit in your food if you annoy them?

Adam Jennings, Leeds

No. It would be like a decorator putting sand in their paint. To be honest, chefs don't really think about the customer. You make the food because that's what you love doing. Spitting in food would ruin it for you, not the customer.

The cost of a meal at your restaurant is the equivalent of my supermarket food bill for two weeks. How do you justify that?

Jane Spence, Manchester

Our average spend per head is pounds 15, which I don't think is overpriced. You pay a huge amount for a solicitor's letter, though it costs about 30p to physically make. People pay for professional help.

If you were a prisoner on death row, what would you choose as your last meal?

Kelly Isherwood, Chelmsford

Bolito misto - a boiled meat dish like cassoulet or pot au feu - I love it.

Where do you put your chef's hat when it's not on your head?

JC Fullerton, Harrow

Under my pillow.

Do you find that a high proportion of your friends drop hints about being asked round to dinner?

Dr Henry Haversham, Bristol

When it's dinner time, I'm usually in the restaurant.

They say that the way to a man's heart is through his stomach. What would I have to cook you to have your children?

Sarah Jason-Browning by e-mail

I didn't realise that is how you make babies! I think pasta, but I usually end up doing the cooking anyway.

Next Week

ex-jockey and novelist dick francis, followed by hairdresser to the stars, nicky clarke

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