I must declare an interest here, I was invited by Silwood last year to help them string the Silwood story together so had a happy part in this lovely book.
I first met Lesley Faull when I visited Silwood Kitchen in 1968; Silwood Kitchen was then four years old. She showed me round and then offered me some recipes. “Beryl will get them for you,” she said. Beryl George, some fifty years on, still works at Silwood. She asked me what recipes I wanted and I named a couple and she said something like “this one is number 76 and that one is no 137.” I asked for a strawberry mousse and she said, “oh that’s no 28.” Today Beryl, now Auffray and a grandmother, still remembers some of those numbers, but the Silwood Recipe Collection has now all been consigned to computer thanks to technological modernisation by Carianne Wilkinson, Deputy Principal and granddaughter of Lesley Faull, know to her grandchildren as Gigi.
Silwood has a formidable history, started by a formidable woman and the tradition carried on by her daughter Alicia Wilkinson and in turn her daughter Carianne.
Silwood Cookery School is a force in the South African Culinary field. Each year at graduation – I am invited to guide the ceremony as Master of Ceremonies – Alicia reads out a list of where former students are, and what they are doing. Cooking for Royal families, in famous restaurants on every continent, food stylists, recipe developers, and more and more.
And now the book. A year at Silwood was a year in the making. It is a book that you as a former student must have, as a parent of a student must have, as an aspiring student must have, as a home cook who wants to cook the classics must have. This is a true old Cape story and a family with an ambition. From a lighter than light chiffon cake to Confit duck, dishes from Lesley’s friends, former students, her family Christmas recipes, still in use today and a host of basics, there is everything here that you will ever need.
This cover was made especially for the books sold at Silwood, in the bookshops, it will have the same title, and a student on the cover.
This is the perfect Christmas gift for your son or daughter who are leaving school, for the bride in your family, or simply to indulge yourself.
Beautiful photography by Craig Fraser, and Libby Doyle’s award winning design make this book a total joy.
A year at Silwood
ISBN 978 0 9922062 9 1