Season 4 of The Great British Bake Off airs tonight on PBS. If you follow the show, you probably already know it's the last season featuring the original hosts (Sue Perkins and Mel Giedroyc) and one of its judges, the charming Mary Berry. If this makes you sad and you find yourself stricken with the Mary Berry blues, I think I've found the cure.
I just came across this trove of old videos of Berry cooking, and they’re a total delight. As some television watchers decades older than me may remember, Berry, now 82, got her start on variety shows on the BBC and ThamesTV, including a variety show called Good Afternoon! that aired the 1970s.
ThamesTV’s YouTube channel has a nice catalog of these cookery segments, where Berry displays the same tart charisma that’s made a whole new generation fall under her spell on The Great British Bake Off. They're a window into another era that I, a millennial who fetishizes the 1970s, wish I lived through. I daresay I like these better than The Great British Bake Off. I'm hooked.
Named after a woman named Mrs. Slade.
Uh, have you ever turned your turkey into turkey mayo? Please let me know in the comments. I'm serious.
A fruitcake with almond paste that, somehow, sounds better than any I've ever had.
Mussels stuffed with snail butter:
The butter is green!
Perhaps the most charming video—she sticks some fish in a blender!
Have a favorite Mary Berry cooking segment? Let us know in the comments.
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This article was originally published in March, but we're still sad Mary is leaving and wanted to share it again.
Mayukh Sen is a James Beard Award-winning food and culture writer in New York. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, the New Yorker, Bon Appetit, and elsewhere. He won a 2018 James Beard Award in Journalism for his profile of Princess Pamela published on Food52.