Life and Style Mellow yellow: a warming spoonful of polenta

Opening a new restaurant is often a quick way for rich people to lose money. It is a gamble opening your doors to the public, just like playing poker. But as with cards, there are ways to hedge your bets. The cautious restaurateur might tend towards well-worn concepts such as the burger joint, for instance, or the fried-chicken shop.

Arnaud Bignon

My life in food... Arnaud Bignon

'After a long day tasting, I eat yoghurt to freshen my palate'

Myers (right) says: 'I bought one of his Japanese motorcycles. It broke down after two days'

How We Met: Simon King & Dave Myers

Simon King, 45

Roots' famous Reggae Reggae sauce took off after an investment from Dragon's Den entrepreneurs Peter Jones and Richard Farleigh

My Life In Food: Levi Roots

Roots first started selling his Reggae Reggae sauce in 1991 at the Notting Hill Carnival. Sixteen years later, after an investment from Dragon's Den entrepreneurs Peter Jones and Richard Farleigh, it hit the shelves in Sainsbury's. Since then, Roots has written six cookbooks, including his latest, Sweet (Conran Octopus £18.99). His proudest moment remains, however, singing happy birthday to Nelson Mandela when he visited Britain in 1996.

Jean-Georges Vongerichten, who runs a restaurant empire from Puerto Rico to Hong Kong to London: 'In Bali, my favourite restaurant serves only duck, which you eat with your hands'

My Life In Food: Jean-Georges Vongerichten, chef, Spice Market

'In bali, my favourite restaurant serves only duck, which you eat with your hands'

John Burton-Race, head of The Restaurant Experience: 'Grilled lobster with butter and garlic, eaten on the beach, would be my ideal meal'

My Life in Food: John Burton-Race

'Grilled lobster with butter and garlic, eaten on the beach, would be my ideal meal'

Hawksmoor: The food is American and trashy… and absolutely delicious

On The Menu: Short ribs, an open book, cool canapés, tomato treats and an ode to bacon

This week I've been eating... Short ribs

Mary Berry has written more than 70 recipe books

Mary Berry bakes her way on to the list

Mary Berry, who has been made a CBE, is one of the UK's best-known and well-respected cookery writers.

Maria Elia, author of Full of Flavour and The Modern Vegetarian: 'When I was a child, I was fascinated by the sheer energy of a kitchen'

My Life in Food: Maria Elia

Elia's career has included stints as head chef of, variously, Delfina, The Whitechapel Dining Room and latterly Joe's in Knightsbridge. She is a familiar face on TV in Market Kitchen and is author of two cookbooks, Full of Flavour, winner of the Female Chef Gourmand Award and The Modern Vegetarian, which has just been re-released by Kyle Books.

McInerney says: 'My favourite cocktail is a Negroni because it doesn't destroy your palate before starting on the wine, unlike, say, a Martini'

Jay McInerney: 'Add anchovies to almost anything and it will taste better'

My earliest food memory... Eating fried clams at the house we used to rent in the summer at Cape Cod; I was maybe five years old. I didn't come from a food-oriented family at all: my mother was a perfectly decent cook, but in the way of most American suburban women at the time, which involved using lots of frozen and canned ingredients and taking full advantage of the revolution in food technology. The dish that's probably most evocative of my childhood, though not necessarily in a good way, is corned beef and boiled cabbage, which we would have on Sunday nights.

Anthony Bourdain and Nigella Lawson

Anthony Bourdain & Nigella Lawson: A delicious duo or an over-ripe pair?

Nigella Lawson and Anthony Bourdain are set to front a new competitive cooking show in the States. Tim Walker wonders what these very different TV chefs will bring to the table

Wolfgang Puck, the caterer for the Oscars: 'I now prefer London to Paris - it has such a good food scene'

My Life In Food: Wolfgang Puck

One of the most influential chefs in the world, Puck has more than 20 fine-dining restaurants dotted around the world, one of which, Spago in Beverly Hills, has two Michelin stars. For the past 18 years, he has been the caterer for the Oscars.

<b>
1. The Food of Spain by Claudia Roden
</b>
<br />
£25, penguin.co.uk
<p>
Roden's recipes are thoughtful, well researched and within the reach of most cooks. Seafood in saffron béchamel, anyone?</P>

The 10 Best summer cookbooks

Whether you're after a recipe for a spectacular salad or a brilliant barbecue, these have tasty ideas

Giuseppe Mascoli: 'Don't just copy recipes, steal them so they become yours'

My earliest food memory...Nipples, obviously, which is my last memory as well! Seriously, though, mozzarella: as a toddler, I got told off for putting it in crazy places, like down other kids' nappies.

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 23 January 2015
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project
Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us