Not sure how many visitors would actually recognise the BBC Good Food Show 2001, which starts on Wednesday and runs until Sunday 2 December at the NEC in Birmingham, from Jamie Oliver's endorsement. "It's fantastic, beautiful, not to be missed!" says the subject of Jamie Oliver: the Biography (just published by John Blake, £16.99). In its 11th year, the BBC Good Food Show, with a jaw-dropping 400 exhibitors, is the Europe's largest food and drink show for the public. Among the stands, some of Britain's best speciality producers will appear under the umbrella of Henrietta Green's Food Lover's Fair. Jamie is gigging at the BBC Good Food Supertheatre, as are others all too familiar from the telly: Ainsley Harriott, Gary Rhodes and Antony Worrall Thompson. Advance tickets £13 from 0870 902 0555 or www.bbcgoodfoodshow.co.uk.
Best not show Stephen Bull's book Classic Bull: An Accidental Restaurateur's Cookbook (just published by Macmillan, £20) to the owners of Shi Hon Mie. The new Chinese restaurant has just opened at 257-259 Fulham Road in London (020-7351 7823), the site vacated by Zaika, which moved to 1 Kensington High Street. Stephen Bull, a fine chef and leading light in modern British cooking, recalls some of the highs and lows of his career between his singularly appealing recipes. One of Bull's restaurants was called Fulham Road. Number 257-259 turned out "to be a poisoned chalice," he writes. "Everything that could have gone wrong did. Apparently an ordered, elegant and civilised restaurant, it was actually a double-fronted, well-upholstered can of worms." Bull is now safely out of range, having fled to the Welsh borders to take over the Lough Pool Inn near Ross-on-Wye.
CHOCaid would be an even better idea if the chocolate were fairly traded. Then the cocoa producers, as well as others in developing countries, would benefit. As it is, CHOCaid raises money for hunger relief projects in countries including Brazil, India and Uganda by making a contribution from sales of its chocolate prezzies, notably the bas-relief Belgian milk chocolate globe. This costs £13.60 plus postage, and 30 per cent of the ex-VAT price is donated to charity; order from 00 353 21 477 3013 or www.chocaid.com. The gift is sent directly, with your choice of message – and the recipient can then log on to choose which project they would like money from their gift to support. Then again, from Traidcraft you can buy chocolates that give cocoa producers in Ghana and sugar farmers in Costa Rica a fair deal for their produce. A 175g box of chocs costs £3.50 from the Traidcraft catalogue (0191-497 6588) or from www.traidcraftshop.co.uk.
KitchenAid may be a blessing for aspiring Nigellas, but is certainly no charity, and must think we're as shallow as a crêpe pan if we'll pay an extra £180 just to have a mixer in the latest colour. It has brought out a brushed nickel-coloured food mixer (with stainless-steel mixing bowl), whisk, beater and dough hook, which costs £449. You can buy KitchenAid mixers (indeed, may already have one) in green, blue, white, red, black, yellow, cream and gunmetal grey for £269.Reuse content