The Kew Gardens Cookbook


An anthology of over 60 vegetarian recipes gathered from celebrity cooks, chefs and food writers in celebration of the huge array of plants and fungi that have the potential to both broaden our palates and prevent biodiversity loss.

From that first cup of tea or coffee and slice of toast or bowl of porridge we start our day with, to the bowl of spaghetti with tomato sauce or stir-fried vegetables with rice we eat for supper, the kitchen is where we connect with plants in a very special way. They literally sustain us. Human beings have long eaten and enjoyed greens, spices, grains, pulses, roots, fungi and fruit.

This cookbook celebrates both the glorious variety of edible plants and fungi that we eat and the vital work that the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew does to promote and sustain this rich biodiversity. All the recipes have been generously donated by wonderful chefs and food writers to support Kew. The theme of coming together reflected by the contributors to this book is important. Sharing food is a special way of connecting with others; it is at the heart of hospitality. Taking the time and trouble to cook for others is nourishing in so many ways. In our hectic world, the time spent together over meals – with the chance to talk and share our thoughts and feelings – is precious. If changing how we eat can help our beautiful, precious planet, then surely we need to embrace that. These are challenging times for the Earth and we humans need to unite to look after it.

Organised in six sections, covering leaves, roots and squashes, grains and pulses, fungi, herbs and spices, and fruit and nuts. The book features over 60 delicious and unusual vegetarian recipes in praise of the myriad of unusual and delicious flavours plants and fungi can offer from around the world – including some you wouldn’t expect to eat.

Jenny Linford is a food writer and author of 15 books, ranging from cookery to ingredient guides. She has written for The Guardian, The Times, Time Out and the British Library’s Food Stories website.

Born in London, her interest in food stems from living as a child in Singapore and Italy, places where good food is important to the community, both taken for granted and relished as a great pleasure.

The more plants we eat, the more space there will be for wild plants. – The Green Planet, BBC Natural History Unit

A perfect book to help you eat a rich diversity of plants to help both your gut microbes and the planet. – Prof Tim Spector OBE, Author of Spoon-Fed

 What a wonderful guide to cooking and eating delicious food! I know this book will become an indispensable part of your cookery inspiration. So, use it in good health and save the planet! – Ken Hom OBE, chef, author and TV presenter

A wonderful and timely book full of delicious ideas to help us all celebrate and preserve plant diversity.. – Dan Saladino, food journalist and author of Eating to Extinction

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