Food Unwrapped team look at our takeaways
Has Andi Oliver stealthily become Britain’s hardest-working TV presenter? She may not be as high-profile as some other hosts, but she’s all over tonight’s small screen.
An evening of Andi begins at 5.30pm when she hosts Channel 4’s Beat the Chef, and then at 8.30pm she can be seen presenting the latest regional final of The Great British Menu over on BBC2.
So, if anyone has earned a Friday night takeaway, it’s her.
However, instead she’s co-presenting Food Unwrapped Does Takeaways, which finds the team investigating the secrets behind some of our favourite dishes.
If Andi seems a natural when it comes to hosting cooking-related programmes, it’s probably because food has long been a big part of her life.
Although she started out in music, as part of the band Rip Rig + Panic, the future presenter and her bandmate Neneh Cherry enjoyed cooking together as well as performing.
Andi told The Guardian: “I’d left home by 17, come to London and met Neneh Cherry.
“We became best friends and started cooking a lot.
“We’d hold huge parties – once we bought 100 mackerel and boned, filleted, cured and roasted them for 100 people.
What a funny pair of teenagers we were.
It might have been an unusual way of catering a teen party, but it was good preparation for the pair hosting their own cooking show, Neneh and Andi Dish It Up, in 2007.
Her foodie credentials aren’t limited to TV either – she’s also run a successful ephemeral restaurant called The Moveable Feast, launched her own kitchen at renovated pub The Jackdaw and Star, and created the award-winning restaurant Andi’s in 2016.
So, it’s little wonder she can empathise with the chefs on Great British Menu. She once told The Guardian: “I dream about recipes and cooking.
“Or that I’m in a mad service at a restaurant and things are broken.
“When my partner and I were running a pub, seven days a week for two and a half years, I had nightmares about getting food wrong.
“But then I’d wake up and realise ‘I’m fine. No one’s waiting to be served.’”
Tonight though, the emphasis isn’t on restaurants, but on takeaways, a subject close to many Britons hearts – we spend a staggering one billion a month on them.
So, the Unwrapped team are learning more about the secrets behind some of our Friday-night favourites.
Jimmy Doherty travels to Thailand to learn about an unexpected ingredient in spring rolls, before visiting India to lean why ghee is at heart of restaurant curries. Meanwhile, Amanda Byram learns more about coffee, and Andi is discovering how doner kebabs are made.
For some people, the doner may be associated more with drunkenly stumbling home from the pub than fine dining, but that doesn’t mean a lot of love doesn’t go into them as Andi discovers when she attends an award ceremony known as the Kebaftas.
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