Fanny Cradock

The original TV chef, Fanny Cradock is best known for her on-screen partnership with her husband-to-be Major John Cradock (AKA Johnnie) and her forthright style of presenting.

She began her television career in 1955 with the BBC series Kitchen Magic, followed by a move to ITV to make the channel’s first cookery programme, Fanny’s Kitchen. She later returned to the BBC and was a constant feature on our screens until 1976, when her harsh treatment of an amateur cook brought about an unceremonious end to her television career.

Fanny wrote many best-selling cookbooks and BBC booklets, including Home Cooking with Fanny Cradock, Cooking with Bon Viveur, Problem Cooking with Fanny Craddock and Ten Classic Dishes. Her recipes went on to define British food, particularly in the post-war period where her Escoffier-inspired recipes and flamboyant style were a refreshing change after years of rationing.

Fanny Cradock died on 27 December 1994 aged 85.