Licence to Cook by Edward Biddulph

Licence to Cook

As many of you know I recently published a book about James Bond’s drinks, available from, and

While browsing I came across another James Bond related book and ordered it immediately. Licence to Cook was written by Edward Biddulph and contains a selection of recipes from Ian Fleming’s books; it also includes some excellent photography of several of the recipes.

If you like to cook and want to add a few Bond related recipes to your repertoire, or want to teach yourself to cook and need James Bond to inspire you then this is definitely the book for you.

Anyone who has yet to delve into the literary Bond world is probably unaware that many of the books feature mouth-watering meals and that while he is less particular about the way his drinks are served, he is extremely fussy when it comes to food. This led to many of the accusations of snobbery and while many call James Bond a gourmet, Raymond Benson in his excellent book The James Bond Bedside Companion insists he is a gourmand.

Dishes range from the simplicity of a boiled egg to modern recipes inspired by Ian Fleming’s descriptions, and all provide background as to how they relate to James Bond. For example, when Bond dines with M at Blades in Moonraker he orders lamb cutlets with peas and new potatoes; the modern interpretation presented here is lamb cutlets with potatoes and pea puree.

The recipes are divided into meals; a single course for breakfast and lunch, three courses for the evening meal, as well as snacks and supper. One of the recipes included here is oyster stew, which apparently Ian Fleming was fond of and used to eat at the Oyster Bar in New York’s Grand Central Station. This recipe sounds expensive but since it uses tinned oysters should fit most budgets.

As well as the recipes the book also mentions what Bond would drink – such as bourbon to accompany a club sandwich for lunch, or a vodka and tonic with a ham sandwich, or Champagne with dinner. If you haven’t yet bought The Complete Guide to the Drinks of James Bond and this book sounds interesting, you can buy both from

Sadly, I haven’t yet followed any of the recipes but even if you don’t make use of it as a cookbook it is still worthwhile having on your bookshelf – or an ideal gift for the James Bond fan who has it all.

You can buy Licence To Cook from

It’s also available from Amazon UK and


David Leigh founded The James Bond Dossier in 2002. A fan of 007 since the age of 8, he is also author of The Complete Guide to the Drinks of James Bond. You can order a copy here if you don't own it already.

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