Raymond Blanc has defended Delia Smith’s use of frozen foods in cooking, saying she was “absolutely right” to do so.
The Michelin starred chef said Delia was the first TV chef to “really simplify food” in the new series of his ITV show Simply Raymond Blanc.
In the program, which accompanies his book of the same name, Blanc pays tribute to two of his female culinary heroes – his late mother and Delia.
Speaking to the Radio Times he said: “Delia Smith was the first TV chef to really simplify food.
“She was heavily criticised for using tinned and frozen food in her recipes, but she was absolutely right.
“Take the frozen pea. First, it’s delicious – all the nutrients are trapped in.
“Not quite as good as fresh, but nobody wants to pick and pod peas. If it takes two hours, you’re not going to want to eat it.”
In the show’s latest series Blanc reminds people that cooking is supposed to be enjoyed and should not get in the way of time spent with friends and family.
“The kitchen table is the heart of the French house,” he says.
“Since neolithic times, people have gathered round fire for warmth and comfort – cooking and conviviality is an extension of that. It’s symbolic and primal.”
Series two of Simply Raymond Blanc begins on ITV on Saturday at 11.40am.