The Prodigal Daughter
If you know nothing about how to run a restaurant, you are about to learn as this is a training course from the keyboard of one of the UK’s favourite TV chefs.
The Prodigal Daughter – Prue Leith, Quercus, £19.99
The author of 12 cookbooks, Prue Leith says she started to get stale, so sold her cookery business and moved to the countryside to write. This is her seventh novel and the second in the Food of Love trilogy – though, happily, it can be read stand-alone.
Meet Laura, who has opened a new restaurant in London, and her daughter Angelica who is heading off to Paris to the Ecole Gastronomique. There she learns the first rule of French kitchens… you do not talk to the chef, you only reply – and your only reply is “Oui, chef.”
Despite being from a family of restaurateurs, she starts from the bottom and she will not, absolutely will not, be bullied by her teacher.
The year is 1968 and the month is May and there is trouble in the air. Not just the student riots, but Angelica’s parents are furious that she has married her no-good cousin.
No matter the events surrounding her, Angelica is falling under the charms of Paris and has managed to win round her teacher and, even the approval of her parents. Life with her feckless cousin, however, has its ups and downs...
As she is pushed more and more into the kitchen, Angelica shows the flair that readers have been hoping for. They are rewarded with titbits of information on cooking techniques – never forget to salt the cucumber slices – and a glimpse of a hopeful future.