Lulu Grimes, Managing Editor of Good Food, on BBC Radio 4's Archive on Four: Fitted and Kitted

Listen again on BBC Sounds to Lulu Grimes, Managing Editor of Good Food, talking about what our kitchens mean to us, on Archive on 4: Fitted and Kitted.

BBC Sounds, BBC Radio 4 – Archive on 4: Fitted and Kitted.
The kitchen is at the heart of our homes – and lives. Food writer Ruby Tandoh and design historian Professor Deborah Sugg Ryan agonise over what to have in their imaginary dream kitchen – and take advice from 100 years of archive. From sooty caverns with no electricity or running water, to sleek utopias of marble and technology, and everything in between – kitchens have come a long way in the last century. But questions of who uses them, how much space they should take up, and where to store the latest gadget continue to plague us.

With contributions from kitchen designers Johnny Grey and Amanda Hughes, as well as architectural historians Lloyd Alter and Professor Barbara Penner, we discover that the advent of the fitted kitchen was in the crucible of war and disease. Through the marketing of the 1930s and 1950s, the kitchen became a site of scientific precision for the British housewife.

Then the cooks and sitcoms of the 60s and 70s made it more about personal expression – Fanny Cradock cooked on TV from her own home, Delia whipped up a curry, and The Good Life showed another version of middle-class aspiration. Today, Jamie Oliver, Nigella Lawson and Nadiya Hussain offer busy people speedy and tasty meals, effortlessly thrown together in a beautiful, open-plan kitchen that dominates family life. Never mind if you want to shut the door on the mess and noise of cooking – or washing up… So why does the kitchen of the future never arrive and what can 100 years of archive teach us about how we cook and live today?

Also featuring Dr Kevin Geddes, expert on TV cooks, and Lulu Grimes of BBC Good Food. With thanks to Rukmini Iyer, chef and cookbook author. Presented by Professor Deborah Sugg Ryan and Ruby Tandoh Produced by Leonie Thomas A Whistledown production for BBC Radio 4

BBC Sounds Archive on 4: Fitted and Kitted

The kitchen is at the heart of our homes – and lives.

Lulu Grimes, Managing Editor, Good Food

Headshot of Lulu Grimes, Group Managing Editor, Immediate Media Co.