The Hairy Bikers, Dave Myers and Si King have recently become the Hairy Dieters as they lost over 6 stone between them. The food loving bikers changed their eating habits and created low fat versions of some of our most popular dishes, such as skinny lasagne, as documented on the BBC’s series, The Hairy Dieters. Their new cookbook, How to Love Food and Lose Weight, recently knocked E L James’s erotic trilogy, 50 Shades of Grey off the top of Amazon’s best-sellers list. “We’ve always known our food is sexy but this is mad,” said the Bikers. “Sex may be important but the way to a nation’s heart is still through its stomach. We’re delighted and thrilled that people have taken the programme in the spirit in which it was intended. You can still have a pint and enjoy your food.”
“We are definitely leaner and greener than when we were in Wales last,” explains Dave, referring to a previous Food Tour of Britain.
“We love Wales; the strong cultural identity is followed through in the Welsh food. And you’ve got everything – great Welsh Black beef in the fields, tasty Welsh lamb on the hills, Sewin in the rivers and even cockles on the coasts. Though I think my favourite is probably laver bread.” he adds.
Si disagrees. “It’s an acquired taste,” he muses, “though I’ve noticed the Welsh have got a salty tooth” he adds. “I’m more of a beach forager myself and love sea beet. Though, we both enjoy foraging blackberries and sloes from the hedgerows too.”
“With gin or vodka,” Dave laughs
“Although we love eating and cooking, neither of us have got around to growing our own food yet,” admits Dave. “I live on a small island anyway so all I can grow is mildew.”
The hilarious double act continues as Si confesses, “My wife’s dead good at growing stuff, it might not be what I want but it’s nice anyway. We are about to buy a plot so she can grow more. I did grow some leeks once but whilst I was away she turned it into a herb bed.”
“I think it’s important to focus on what you do best,” says Dave wisely, “and for us that’s cooking, eating, biking, travelling and talking rubbish.”
“We do that so well,” agrees Si, adding “98% of good cooking is about good shopping or sourcing good food. Local produce is always better and we discovered some terrific Welsh flavours that we didn’t expect, like the charcuterie from Triley and the Welsh mead.
The Welsh are clever,” says Dave, “they do lots of nice takes on traditional food. I think my favourite might be the Welsh Black fillet,” he adds. “Three quick tips for cooking it,” adds Si, “never cook straight from the fridge; only turn it twice whilst cooking (it stretches otherwise) and leave it to relax for a bit before you eat it.”
For details of their Larger Than Live Tour visit http://www.hairybikers.com/
From Lynne Allbutt’s Green Scene column for the Western Mail (Trinity Mirror Group); see the rest of the column here http://www.walesonline.co.uk/showbiz-and-lifestyle/home-garden/2012/10/13/gardening-lynne-allbutt-91466-32013200/