My Life on a Plate
Chef Brian Turner takes a celebrity guest back to their youth, using the power of food to revive colorful memories from their past.
S01:E01 - Mary Berry
Mary Berry journeys back to her childhood haunts in Bath and reveals that she was an outdoorsy child and naughty at school! Together with chef/presenter Brian Turner, they visit key locations that resonate with Mary, prompting heart-warming memories of a happy childhood. Brian is inspired to cook 2 dishes – one full of nostalgia to remind Mary of her Mum’s home baking; the other is a tribute to Mary, drawing on different aspects of her younger years, that puts her life on a plate.
S01:E02 - Nigel Havers
TV & movie star Nigel Havers travels back to Suffolk to reminisce about a colourful childhood – regaling TV chef Brian Turner with stories of betting at Newmarket races aged 5, and setting fire to a listed building in his parents’ garden, amongst other capers. But there are poignant memories too, of being sent off to boarding school at 6, and regular canings. Brian finds plenty to inspire him to cook two dishes to reflect Nigel’s life – nostalgic comfort food just like his mother’s, and a tribute dish with ingredients that touch on different elements of his fascinating childhood.
S01:E03 - Nicholas Parsons
Against an evocative backdrop of the London skyline, veteran broadcaster and entertainer Nicholas Parsons delves deep into the memory banks of his long life. Stories of school, studying engineering, and finally breaking through into acting emerge, among more poignant memories of the blitz which he could see going on from the relative safety of Hampstead Heath. TV chef Brian Turner works his magic in an outdoor kitchen, creating nostalgic dishes designed to transport Nicholas back to his mother’s cooking, and reflect the kind of food he likes now.
S01:E04 - Diane Louise Jordan
Diane Louise Jordan takes a sometimes emotional trip back to her childhood, which was spent mostly in the 1960s new town of Hatfield, north of London. She remembers vividly a new sense of security which permeated her early years in a new home and school. Diane’s fascinating food memories, combining her mother’s Caribbean cooking and traditional British school lunches give chef Brian Turner a broad palette on which to draw for the nostalgic dishes he cooks in tribute to Diane.
S01:E05 - Tony Blackburn
Veteran disc jockey Tony Blackburn takes chef Brian Turner right back to where his story began in Poole, Dorset. They visit the home his father designed, the beach where he used to sell ice cream in the school holidays, and Bournemouth Pavilion where he learnt the ropes as a performer and entertainer. Brian cooks a nostalgic dessert to remind Tony of his Mum’s cooking, and creates a culinary tribute, which puts Tony’s life on a plate.
S01:E06 - Johnny Ball
Johnny Ball revisits childhood haunts in Bristol with chef Brian Turner. Apart from his hunger for maths challenges in the classroom, he remembers the impact of ration book Britain on the supply of sweets at his local corner shop! But there are fond memories too of the resourcefulness of his parents to give their son a healthy start in life, despite the odds. Brian is inspired by Johnny’s love of wartime delicacies like offal to cook one of his nostalgic dishes. For his tribute to Johnny, Brian combines the ingredients suggested in heart-warming stories of a life well lived.
S01:E07 - Simon Weston
Simon Weston cheerfully admits that he was a mischievous child, growing up in the Welsh valleys’ mining village of Nelson in the 60s. Kicking around with his friends, he was keen on scrumping apples from the local big house, and making a few bob on the football results. His visit to his mother’s former home brings a moving account of his return on a stretcher for a long convalescence following his Falklands injuries. As he and chef Brian Turner travel back in time, Simon expresses warmly the debt of gratitude he feels to the villagers who supported him and his family through those difficult months. Meanwhile Brian taps into his many memories for inspiration to cook two special dishes that remind him of childhood.
S01:E08 - Christopher Biggins
Christopher Biggins grew up in Salisbury and describes a childhood every bit as flamboyant as his adult personality would suggest! He developed an early taste for the high life, ordering room service at the local hotel, while his mother served cocktails downstairs. He remembers the larger than life characters who filled his younger life - Aunts and Grannies who taught him the appreciation of food and gave him culinary memories to cherish. Brian picks up lots of ideas as they chat and comes up with two mouth-watering dishes to transport Biggins back to those happy times.
S01:E09 - Arlene Phillips
Arlene’s childhood story shows a remarkable determination to dance, despite a difficult time at school. Her strength of character saw her through the pain of losing her mum at a young age, and confidence to take on the world to become a great choreographer. Chef Brian Turner finds out about the typical family food Arlene grew up with, which inspires him to produce two special dishes that bring a taste of nostalgia and pay tribute to her Jewish roots.
S01:E10 - Colin Jackson
Champion athlete Colin Jackson still lives in Cardiff where he was born and brought up. He takes chef Brian Turner to the city’s fresh food market which his Mum used to take him to as a child, and he still shops at today. His culinary upbringing combined the staples of Caribbean cuisine with produce from the local larder, dominated by fresh fish. So there’s plenty of inspiration for Brian to create a dish full of nostalgia for Colin, and a tribute dish that puts his guest’s life on a plate.
S01:E11 - Russell Grant
A journey back to his childhood reveals that actor and astrologer Russell Grant was once a devoted and angelic little choirboy with an impressive soprano voice. His passion for rural Middlesex where he grew up hasn’t left him, and his memories are full of the tastes of childhood. Chef Brian Turner takes Russell back to the church where he sang, the canal whose noisy chugging barges lulled him to sleep at night, and the modest flat where his parents raised him. Along the way, Brian gathers inspiration for two dishes he cooks for Russell, one designed to take his guest back to his youth, the other which puts Russell’s life on a plate.
S01:E12 - Alistair McGowan
As a child, Alistair McGowan loved school lunches, especially the puddings. His mother’s cooking was equally memorable and innovative, providing plenty of inspiration for the dishes that chef Brian Turner creates for Alistair. Together they revisit evocative places from Alistair’s childhood, from Worcestershire’s plum orchards, to his old school, where sights and smells take him straight back to his youth. In his childhood home, we discover how Alistair realised his gift for impersonation, as he switches effortlessly into some of the voices that helped him make his name.
S01:E13 - Lesley Garrett
Lesley Garrett is full of enthusiasm for her native Yorkshire and for the outdoorsy childhood she enjoyed with her sisters. She takes chef Brian Turner on a journey back in time to visit key locations that help tell the story of her early years. Her resourceful parents taught her to make the most of what food was available, fishing in school holidays, fruit picking from their own trees and raising rabbits and pigs to put on the table. There’s plenty for Brian to work with as he creates two dishes that weave nostalgia and the tastes of home together, to put Lesley’s life on a plate.
S01:E14 - Michael Buerk
Although Michael Buerk was born in Solihull, it’s in Hereford where he feels his life really began as far as food is concerned. From the unpromising 1950s fare of tinned spaghetti, overcooked cabbage and grey peas cooked by his mother and grandmother, to the delicious wholesome food he found on his girlfriend’s family table, Michael has never looked back. Brian finds plenty of inspiration in Michael’s stories of his youth as well as in the bountiful Herefordshire fields to produce two tantalising dishes which put his guest’s life on a plate.
S01:E15 - Anneka Rice
Anneka Rice loved her childhood growing up in Surrey and is thrilled to revisit special places from her youth with chef Brian Turner. Anneka recounts stories of choir practice and tennis, squeezed into a carefree childhood, full of tomboy adventures, campfires and foraging for wild mushrooms. She also remembers her mother’s enthusiasm for the exotic new style of cordon bleu cooking in the 1970s, and memories of boeuf bourguignon and chicken liver pâté come flooding back. It’s all grist to Brian’s mill as he puts together two dishes for Anneka to try, that whisk her back to her early years through the medium of good old fashioned food with a modern twist.