Cooking for Joy: Celebrating Joyce Molyneux

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Angela Hartnett, Sally Clarke, Ravinder Bhogal and Polly Russell celebrate the life of the pioneering chef and restaurateur.

This event will take place at the British Library. It will be simultaneously live streamed on the British Library platform. Tickets may be booked either to attend in person (physical), or to watch on our platform (online) either live or within 48 hours on catch up.  Viewing links will be sent out shortly before the event. Please note that the online version of this event is only available as part of the online day pass.

The online version of this event will be live captioned.

Part of the British Library Food Season Super Sunday. Day pass and single session tickets available. Please note that the online version of this event is only available as part of the online day pass.

The late chef and restaurateur Joyce Molyneux knew she wanted to be a chef from the age of 16. At a time when a career with food for women typically meant housekeeping, school meals or canteens, Joyce entered the world of the restaurant kitchen and ended up being one of the country’s most loved and critically acclaimed chefs. The restaurant where she made her name, The Carved Angel in Dartmouth, became synonymous with locally sourced food, creatively cooked and generously served. Unassuming, modest and generous, she influenced UK food culture and paved the way for women chefs. 

Drawing from British Library recordings with Joyce the event celebrates her life and reflects on the changing space of the restaurant kitchen with three of the UK’s best loved and most respected women chefs, Ravinder Bhogal, Sally Clarke and Angela Hartnett in conversation with Food Season founder Polly Russell. 

This event is part of the British Library Food Season 2023

Ravinder Bhogal is a journalist, chef and restaurateur who was born in Kenya to Indian parents., Ravinder Her food is inspired by her mixed heritage and the UK’s diverse immigrant culture. Her debut restaurant, Jikoni, was ranked 56th in the UK by the National Restaurant Awards within seven months of opening and achieved a coveted place in the Michelin Guide in the same year. Ravinder has written three books; Comfort & Joy: Irresistible Pleasures from a Vegetarian Kitchen (Bloomsbury) published in May 2023 and the award-winning Jikoni: Proudly Inauthentic Recipes from an Immigrant Kitchen (Bloomsbury, 2020) and Cook in Boots (HarperCollins, 2009). She is a columnist at the FT Weekend and Guardian Feast and a contributing editor at Harper’s Bazaar.

Sally Clarke grew up in Surrey and studied at Croydon College, followed by Le Cordon Bleu. She worked in Paris, London and California before opening Clarke’s Restaurant in 1984. She went on to open two shops, a wholesale bakery and a production kitchen. She has published three books: Sally Clarke’s Book: Recipes from a Restaurant, Shop and Bakery, 30 Ingredients, and First Put on Your Apron. In 2009 she was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s birthday honours list for services to the hospitality industry.

Angela Hartnett, OBE, is one of the UK’s most loved chefs and restaurateurs, known for her sophisticated yet simple cooking instilled in her by her Italian grandmother and mother. After starting out in the kitchens at Aubergine, Zafferano, L’Oranger and Petrus, she became head chef at Petrus within seven short months, helping the restaurant to achieve a Michelin star. She went on to launch Amaryllis in Scotland; Verre in Dubai; MENU and The Grill Room at The Connaught, with Gordon Ramsay. In 2007 Angela was awarded an MBE for services to the hospitality industry, and the following year she opened her own restaurant, Murano in Mayfair, where she is Chef Proprietor, and holds a Michelin star and one of the few restaurants to hold 4 AA rosettes. In 2012 Angela opened Hartnett Holder & Co in partnership with Robin Hutson, and with Chef Luke Holder and from 2013 to 2019 three branches of Cafe Murano. Angela was the judge in BBC1’s Britain’s Best Home Cook in 2020, alongside Claudia Winkleman, Mary Berry and Chris Bavin. In June 2022 she launched the podcast, Dish by Waitrose & Partners, which she co-hosts with celebrity broadcaster Nick Grimshaw. Angela currently has three cookbooks to her name, Cucina (2007) and Angela’s Kitchen (2011) and bestseller, The Weekend Cook, Good Food for Real Life (2022). In January 2022 Angela was awarded an OBE for services to the hospitality industry and to the NHS during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Polly Russell is a food historian, the founder and curator of the Food Season and the Head of the Eccles Centre for American Studies at the British Library. In 2002 while researching for her PhD on British culinary culture she conducted oral histories with people involved in the UK food industry, including an eight hour recording with Joyce Molyneux. Polly was the on-screen historian for BBC2’s Back in Time series and has a regular food history column in the Financial Times Saturday Magazine.

If you’re attending in person, please arrive no later than 15 minutes before the start time of this event. We are committed to the safety of our event bookers. Find out how we are welcoming you to the Library safely.

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Name: Cooking for Joy: Celebrating Joyce Molyneux
Where: Pigott Theatre
The Knowledge Centre
The British Library
96 Euston Road
Show Map      How to get to the Library
When: -
Price: From £6 – £12
Concessions available
Enquiries: +44 (0)1937 546546
Book now

* Please note that there is a £1.50 transaction fee when tickets are posted, or for telephone sales when an e-ticket is requested.