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The big interview   |   Eating & drinking

Wicked Chats with Rukmini Iyer

Rukmini Iyer is the bestselling author of The Roasting Tin and of the new The Green Barbecue (out now).

What is your first food memory? Fried chicken! We were moving house when I was very young and all the furniture had gone ahead of us, so we sat in the living room and had fried chicken for lunch on a picnic blanket. It felt very exciting, like camping.

Where are you happiest? In a patch of sunlight, like a cat. I follow the light around my house or my boyfriend’s with my laptop and notebooks, and the collie follows me – although she’s started stealing the best patches of sunlight.

What’s your most treasured possession? Pepper, the border collie: she’s just turned two years’ old and is such a character – demanding, capricious, clever, and endearing. If you kiss the top of her head – which I often do – she smells like a delicious ginger biscuit. Her favourite dish is pot-roast chicken and rice with ginger and turmeric, so this may have something to do with it. 

What trait do you most dislike in others? Artificiality and close-mindedness. I like people who are genuinely excited about things and willing to entertain new ideas.

Who do you most admire and why? My younger sister Padmini; she’s got a razor-sharp mind, an ability to articulate her ideas with conviction, and really lives by her principles. She’s also the kindest person I know and makes me laugh more than anyone else. She is the person I would like to be if I wasn’t quite so frivolous.

What’s your pet hate? Bad lighting.

What’s been your worst job? Trainee solicitor.

Tell us a secret most people won’t know about you. Only my friends and family know this – I’m not a fan of avocados!

Rukmini Iyer is partnering with Riverford for a Guest Chef Recipe Box, featuring a recipe from her new book The Green Barbecue, perfect for vegan foodies and eating inside or out. 

To order Rukmini's Guest Chef Riverford Recipe Box, click here

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