a story lives forever
Sign in
Form submission failed!

Stay signed in

Recover your password?
Form submission failed!

Web of Stories Ltd would like to keep you informed about our products and services.

Please tick here if you would like us to keep you informed about our products and services.

I have read and accepted the Terms & Conditions.

Please note: Your email and any private information provided at registration will not be passed on to other individuals or organisations without your specific approval.

Video URL

You must be registered to use this feature. Sign in or register.


A Taste of Italy


BBC's Claudia Roden's Mediterranean Cookery
Claudia Roden Writer
Comments (0) Please sign in or register to add comments

From this time, I only went to the Mediterranean every time I've travelled. And so, it was really like my patch of work. And I went gradually around. But after Morocco... and in Morocco I met a lot of strangers as well. And you know, one woman who is... some who weren't strangers is the cousin of the ambassador in England. He had given me her address. And it was the most extraordinary cuisine. And so, I had all kinds of experiences in Morocco.

But while I was travelling around the Mediterranean, right from the beginning, the BBC had been interested in doing a series on the Mediterranean. Because they had done a series on healthy food. Healthy cuisine. And it ended with an event in Italy where some great special nutritionists were saying, 'Mediterranean food is the healthiest'. And because there had been an early... American nutritionist who had done research in six countries, and he found that in all the Mediterranean countries, people lived longer. They had less vascular diseases. A whole lot of things. And so, the BBC... I was involved in that series, but just doing the Middle Eastern thing when I didn't know about the healthy values.

And so, they asked me could I do a television series with them. And I did. And I was more behind the scenes. I was the presenter, only to present each different programme. But I was the voice explaining where we were, what we did, and the television series was called Claudia Roden's Mediterranean Cookery. And so, for me, this was marvellous, because the paid for travels. But also, we are able, because of their money, to go to all kinds of places. And also, everybody wanted to help. Because to be in the BBC programme, is something. And so, we went to seven countries. Including Egypt and Greece and we went to Spain. And for me it was my first trip to Spain. But I had already travelled quite a lot and so they used my contacts and my knowledge, and also, my knowledge of events to do their film. For instance in Morocco, I knew there was going to be a wedding. And so, they went out without me – they went out mostly without me – to film the wedding. And it was a wedding in two houses. The men in one, the women in the other. The cooking. And I knew the whole culture. By then, I had already done a lot of finding out.

Claudia Roden (b. 1936) is an Egyptian-born British cookbook writer and cultural anthropologist of Sephardi/Mizrahi descent. She is best known as the author of Middle Eastern cookbooks including A Book of Middle Eastern Food, The New Book of Middle Eastern Food and The Book of Jewish Food.

Listeners: Nelly Wolman

Claudia Roden talking to her granddaughter Nelly Wolman about her life in food.

Tags: BBC, series, Mediterranean, travelling, wedding

Duration: 3 minutes, 40 seconds

Date story recorded: September 2022

Date story went live: 04 December 2023