Quick bites: Food on the Radio


There’s more to foodie information than books, magazines and cooking shows. There are also foodies on the radio. I have here a selection of BBC Radio programmes. They’re all available on podcasts, with the first three also being available to listen to on the BBC website. The links are there on their programme pages. These are all generalist food shows, I’ll do another post on vegetarian podcasts in the future.

Food Programme
Food Programme Radio 4’s serious factual food programme. It can be a bit worthy, it tends to cover one subject for the whole 30 minutes, but it is a ‘must listen’ for keeping up with food news and developments. That said when it covered vegetarian food the ‘carnivore’ presenter expressed surprise at how much taste the vegetarians were putting in their food – *eyeroll*!

Kitchen Cafe
Kitchen Cafe is Radio Scotland’s food magazine show. Much chattier and livelier in nature than the Food Progamme, they cover two or three subjects per programme with opinions and ideas shared between the presenters. Being based in Scotland, that’s their focus, but don’t let that put you off, most of what they talk about is applicable anywhere.

Kitchen Cabinet
Kitchen Cabinet is a foodie panel show hosted by Jay Rayner. It’s firmly in the tradition of panel shows – a lot of fun based around a subject, in this case, food. I love Jay Rayner’s writing and he’s in his element here being witty (and occasionally silly).

These last two are only available on podcast.

Woman’s Hour: Cook the Perfect
Cook the Perfect is a ten minute slot in the venerable Woman’s Hour on Radio 4. Celebrity cooks and chefs cook a dish while being interviewed. The quality varies widely with this show and the interviewer never seems to show a huge amount of enthusiasm for food. Most interviewees seem to be there as part of the publicity for their latest book or tv show.

Cooking with Paula McIntyre
Cooking with Paula McIntyre is also a ten minute slot in a larger programme (this time Radio Ulster’s Saturday Magazine) but it is everything Cook the Perfect isn’t. Paula is out to cook good food not sell something. Her enthusiasm and competence shines through, and you can hear the chopping, hissing and bubbling as the food cooks.


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