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Mary Berry webchat: Join the queen of tarts on Monday 1.30 - 2.30

(162 Posts)
RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Fri 13-Sep-13 16:49:53

We are excited and delighted that queen of the kitchen, Mary Berry, will be joining us at MNHQ for a live webchat.

Mary Berry, CBE is one of the UKs best-known and most respected cookery writers and television presenters. She has over 80 books to her name and over 6 million sales worldwide. A judge on The Great British Bake Off she has been voted as Britains favourite baking companion.

Mary's autobiography A Recipe for Life is out this month. A touching, evocative and fascinating memoir, Mary tells the story of her remarkable rise to fame. Everyone who joins the webchat will be entered into a draw to win a signed copy of A Recipe for Life. Join us on Monday or post a question in advance to Mary on this thread.

Faithless12 Mon 16-Sep-13 10:54:59

I have a question do you have any dairy and egg free recipes? My DS is having to avoid those and possibly gluten.

MrsKwazii Mon 16-Sep-13 11:04:01

<Tries again> Hello Mary, I love your books and even had a copy of the 1970 Hamlyn All Colour Cookbook tracked down for me when I left home - the cakes and breads section are still great grin.

Do you ever look at fads in the baking world - like the seeming obsession for salted caramel flavours - and think "I give that flavour combo two years before we all come to our senses"?

Like Expat, I'd like to thank you for being so open about being a bereaved mother. It can be such a taboo subject and something that many people would prefer us to hide. I think that when parents like you talk about your experiences it really does help other bereaved families and may help little by little to change others' attitudes.

Valentinegal Mon 16-Sep-13 11:21:41

Hi Mary, was just given your latest book for my birthday and enjoying working through it. Dont want to out myself but your sister taught me all I know in the kitchen and gave me such confidence in cooking. Seems like these days, and in the past, cooking lessons in other schools have often been rather lame. Her lessons were the highlight of our week and I have always wanted to thank her so could you pass the message on. Thanks

OddSockMonster Mon 16-Sep-13 11:48:23

Hello Mary,

We're thinking of doing a Backwoods Bake Off with our Scout group (Beaver scouts right up to parents), cooking on fires and gas stoves. Not quite sure if it's possible to cook petit fours on a stick yet but willing to have a go.

My question do you have a favourite outdoors cooking/baking recipe? Thanks.

mignonette Mon 16-Sep-13 11:54:11

Hello Dame Mary grin

I bought your baking books for my DD (who is now training as a Patissiere) because along w/ Delia, Harold McGee and Larousse, they are indeed, bibles of the kitchen.

However, what other other books would you buy for a newly-flown-the-nest child?

And another cheeky question- What was the last culinary book you read/purchased?

dottyaboutstripes Mon 16-Sep-13 12:19:18

Hi Mary!

I wonder in all it possible to go off cake? grin What I mean to say is have you found that you bake less at home for yourself after sampling all those magnificent creations on GBBO?

As an aside, I'm a Tenbyite and LOVE the photo taken on the beach which won your Dad a prize!

ArtisanLentilWeaver Mon 16-Sep-13 12:22:42

Welcome Mary!

What is the secret to fluffy scones, please?

YoniMatopoeia Mon 16-Sep-13 12:34:59

Hello Mary.

When you said in an interview

"I would always stand up for women but I don’t want women’s rights and all that sort of thing.”

Which women's rights do you not want?

ThisTimeItsPersonal Mon 16-Sep-13 12:59:00

Hi Mary, I was just curious, who inspired you to become such a fantastic baker? You have inspired so many people and I think you really are a fab role model! smile

GwendolineMaryLacey Mon 16-Sep-13 12:59:55

Hello Mary <fans self>

I've got such a simple question that you may think I'm an idiot but here goes...

How on earth do I stop fruit/choc chips etc sinking to the bottom? I have asked a million people and got a million answers but nothing works. If you can solve this I will be the toast of the school coffee morning!

Iamcountingto3 Mon 16-Sep-13 13:09:56

I was coming onto ask about those feminism comments too, Yoni. Having seen the backlash to your comments, Mary, would you be able to expand on your issue with feminism, and any concerns around current maternity leave rights? (For anyone who missed it, coverage here,) Now, it is a DM link, so I'm very interested to hear Mary's side of the interview!

gleegeek Mon 16-Sep-13 13:30:51

Hello Mary. My copy of Mary Berry's Ultimate Cake Book is falling apart. I recently took nearly all my other baking books to a charity shop as I only ever seem to use your recipes. I am a self-taught baker using a very clapped out oven, but I seem to be able to turn out pretty good cakes thanks to you! DD(10) loves GBBO and enjoys baking with me.

May I beg you to point me in the direction of fat free/nearly fat free baking recipes please? I have recently been diagnosed with gall stones and need to keep to a low fat diet, but don't want to stop baking and eating!

Thank you!

MikeLitoris Mon 16-Sep-13 13:31:24

Work are doing a bake off style event for charity. What shall I make?

cm22v077 Mon 16-Sep-13 13:32:37

Hi Mary,

I really enjoyed watching the programme about your rise to fame that was on TV a couple months ago, especially when you went to the kitchens in Paris. Which point of your career would you consider to be your highlight? I am looking forward to reading your book.

I also saw you on through the keyhole, your house is beautiful!

Lovely to have you at MNHQ!

RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 16-Sep-13 13:32:38

We're delighted and excited that Mary is here with us at MNHQ and ready to answer your questions. Everyone who joins the discussion will be entered into a draw to win a signed copy of Mary's memoir, Recipe for Life. Welcome to Mumsnet Mary Berry...

MaryBerry Mon 16-Sep-13 13:32:46

Hi. I'm so delighted to be here at Mumsnet. I'm so excited to answer all your tricky baking conundrums!

HoneyDragon Mon 16-Sep-13 13:33:40


Faithless12 Mon 16-Sep-13 13:34:42


MaryBerry Mon 16-Sep-13 13:35:16


Hello Mary,

We're thinking of doing a Backwoods Bake Off with our Scout group (Beaver scouts right up to parents), cooking on fires and gas stoves. Not quite sure if it's possible to cook petit fours on a stick yet but willing to have a go.

My question do you have a favourite outdoors cooking/baking recipe? Thanks.

I was a girl guide, so outdoor cooking is not new to me. One of the best things to do with the troop is to make drop scones. You may not have a griddle but you can do them in non-stick pans. They're quick to cook and delicious to eat!
One of my first cooking experiences was outside with my brothers on a fire that we built at the bottom of the garden. Health and safety would not have liked it! We used to fry eggs–we had chickens and my mum used to wonder where the eggs went!

KatyPutTheCuttleOn Mon 16-Sep-13 13:35:19

My daughter has requested a chocolate cake with marzipan inside, do you have any good suggestions please?

TheContrastofWhiteonWhite Mon 16-Sep-13 13:35:23

Mary - I am just starting to deal with the scariness of having to do a school lunch box. Other than flapjacks, what cakes do you recommend for withstanding the bashing and dropping that tends to happen to a 4 year old's lunch box and still being edible at lunch time?

Pascha Mon 16-Sep-13 13:35:26

Oh goody. I'm never around for these webchats normally. Now I have to think of a baking question which is hard because I don't really do it much.

MaryBerry Mon 16-Sep-13 13:37:01


Welcome Mary!

What is the secret to fluffy scones, please?

I think the perfect scone should be beautifully moist and baked really freshly. If they're a day old, just warm them before serving, just like they do in Devon and Cornwall for cream teas.
When making the mixture, make sure it's really wet and sticking to your hands, don't kneed them too much either. It makes the best scones.

Faithless12 Mon 16-Sep-13 13:37:16

I want some of that cake Katy, sounds nice.

shelley72 Mon 16-Sep-13 13:37:58

hello Mary, do you know why can't I make a Victoria sponge? They seem to go in the oven ok, rise, look ok when taken from the oven then sink spectacularly! So what could I be doing wrong? Do you have a failsafe recipe? Have just bought a new oven and keen to try it out. I so want to be able to bake for my children! Thank you!

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