Latest News

Newsrooms Got Talent ! - 26/07/11
I am delighted to be supporting “ Beating Bowel Cancer” charity at this year`s  “Newsroom's Got Talent” !. 

 “Newsrooms Got Talent “ is a star studded charity event, based loosely around “Britain's Got Talent” with Presenters from the nations biggest broadcasters including BBC, ITV, NBC, CNN, SKY and Al Jazeera take to the stage in an attempt to wow the celebrity judges, which have included Piers Morgan, Arlene Phillips, Louie Spence and Johnny Vaughan.

All in front of a live audience of 510 guests including the who's who of the media industry and corporate sponsors.
Each goody bag on the night will contain one of my Ancient Greek Vinaigres ( created from a recipe sipped after the first ever Olympic games), a Roman Vinaigre and my unique Mediaeval 15th century Old English “Ale-Gar”, a recipe created from an Ale that was once drank by Queen Elizabeth 1st, and what has now  become the biggest Ale-ternative to a Balsamic vinegar in history !

NGT 2011 will take place on the 2nd of November at Indigo2 at the O2 and involves performances by Jon Snow, Mary Nightingale, Katie Derham, Mark Austin, Julie Etchingham, plus special guest performances from the likes of Chesney Hawkes! 

For more information please visit 
http://newsroomsgottalent.com/#
Stratford Food Festival : Biggest And Best Line Up Ever ! - 14/07/11
Shakespeare's birthplace will be transformed into a delicious treasure trove of good things to eat and drink as the town plays host to the fifth Stratford Food Festival on Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th September 2011.

As well as lining the banks of the River Avon, this year the festival hits the streets too by joining with three great food markets across the town, offering a fun-filled and tasty day out for all the family.

The event brings together a fantastic selection of great local producers and some from further afield, who are passionate about putting the very best on the table. So whether you want to stock your pantry, equip your kitchen, feed your mind or simply slate your thirst, you're bound to find something that more than fits the bill from the exciting festival programme this year.

Join us for the day - or make a weekend out of it - and find the town's beautiful riverside gardens bustling with stands as deliciously diverse as organic meat and veg, locally brewed real ales, beers and ciders, artisan cheeses and award-winning ice creams. There will be a British Farmers' market in the heart of the town as well as a French Market on Bridge Street and an Italian Market on Henley Street, plus live music and entertainment all weekend.

Work up an appetite and try some organic beef from Brown Cow, succulent hog roast from Castlemoor or a juicy burger from Happy Herefords. Turn the heat up with David's Chilli Oil or Anila's Authentic Sauces and enjoy some tasty nibbles from The Big Yum. Why not follow with a sweet treat from the Crumbly Cupcake Company, some beautifully handmade cakes and biscuits from Truly Scrumptious, or chocolate goodies from the Cacao Bean Konditorei & Café. Or if you prefer savoury, why not savour a plate of fine cheese from Lymn Bank Farm or sample Alan Coxon`s unique multi award winning historic "Ale-Gar" Roman and Ancient Greek vinaigres?


Wine lovers will find plenty to savour too, with superb wines from Kiwi Cuisine and Pure Spain, as well as something stronger like English Gin from Foxdenton Estate and exciting liqueur and party drinks from the Perfect Tipple.

You can even pull up a stool at the bar and enjoy a perfectly pulled pint of UBU from Warwickshire's own Purity Brewing Company, at Stratford's favourite local, The One Elm, who will be out in force at the festival, as will the Royal Shakespeare Company's Rooftop Restaurant and Bar and The Lazy Cow, Warwick.

Afterwards, you can learn about how honey is made with the Stratford Beekeeping Association, growing your own and sustainable living, buy gadgets for your kitchen from Lakeland and then sit back and watch a cookery demonstration, glass in hand. The proceedings will be overseen by chef, author and TV presenter Alan Coxon, who is the festival's ambassador this year.

Tickets, costing £5 for adults, will be available online from
www.stratfordfoodfestival.co.uk or by calling the ticket hotline which will also be available soon. Children under the age of 16 are allowed to enter free of charge. Optional extras include the Taste Trail, an exciting trail of stalls at the festival and participating eateries in the town, and VIP tickets giving you the best seats in the house and guaranteed entrance to demonstrations.

Join us on Saturday 24th or Sunday 25th September and tuck into a tasty day out in a fabulous riverside setting. The festival is open from 10am to 11pm on day one, and from 10am to 6pm on day two on the banks of the river Avon, opposite the newly-refurbished Royal Shakespeare Theatre, and throughout the town.

- Ends -

Note to Editors:
1. For press passes, please contact Sarah Pracey on 07985 112 777 or email
sarah@praceypr.com
2. For more information, to arrange an interview with festival ambassador Alan Coxon or to receive images, please contact Sarah Pracey on the details above
3. For more information about Alan please log onto
www.alancoxon.com
4. A full list of exhibitors is available at
www.stratfordfoodfestival.co.uk
Opportunity To Appear On The Cover Of Your Own Food/Drinks Book - 29/06/11
Opportunity To Appear On The Cover Of Your Own Food/Drinks Book    


I am currently developing a new book concept and I am in search of food / drink companies that may be interested in sponsorship opportunities.

The sponsors will receive a book of their own with front and back cover branding as well as product info and branding within the book itself. Needles to say that the book will have a point of difference and the aim is to produce a recognisable top end quality product.

The timing of the book is to coincide with a new TV series to be shot in October and the making of the book will also be an integral part of the show, maximising coverage, potential ( global) sales and brand exposure.

I'm particularly interested in companies that have an association or are UK based, Indian businesses /food companies, car manufacturers or similar, spices, herbs, Indian / Asian foods, yoghurt ,chutneys, historic ingredients/ products with provenance.

Please contact Alan Coxon at: info@alancoxon.com

Many thanks
Alan

iTQi Food awards photo`s 2011 - 06/06/11
http://www.debatty.com/itqi2011/
More than outside catering ! - 04/05/11
Delighted to announce that  I have launched a"Private dining Club "

The aim of the "Private Dinning Club" is to change the face of private and corporate entertaining with innovative ideas in food styling, presentation, taste, decoration, service and entertainment. 

I believe that there is more to offer than just cooking and serving within the private home, as many outside caterers do, so I have blended 25 years working within leading hotels and restaurants with over 11 years working within the TV and media industry.

Combine the two and you have great food with stories and after dinner banter, adding a point of difference to any dinner party or private social event. 

As you may see from my media profile I have had the privilege of cooking for world leaders, Royalty and major celebrities , I have also had the pleasure of cooking with many stars of film and screen on live TV shows such as Gloria Hunnifords "Open House" channel 5 ,"Coxon`s Royal Feast" BBC Worldwide, "Coxon`s Sporting Feast " 
to name but a few.
I have also written three cookbooks to date and created a globally unique multi award winning historic food range !
  
This new approach to Private dining aims to offer a relaxed professional and all round entertaining culinary experience in the privacy of your own home.
 
It also goes without saying that only the finest ingredients are ever used, sourcing the best and offering a point of difference.  

I am also able to offer the flexibility within my service , from the small intimate dinner to large corporate parties and themed events and  can arrange; marquees, flowers and decoration, advice on design, printing, invitations, lighting and entertainment.

For more information. please do not hesitate to call 01386 830299 or drop me an e-mail
info@alancoxon.com  
All you need to know about ther history of weddings ! - 27/04/11
Why do they call it a wedding breakfast when it can be served at all hours of the day?

A wedding breakfast

is a
dinner given to the bride, bridegroom and guests at the wedding reception that follows a wedding in the United Kingdom and some other English-speaking countries, including Australia and New Zealand. The wedding breakfast is not normally a morning meal, so its name can be puzzling. The name is claimed to have arisen from the fact that in pre-Reformation times the wedding service was a Mass and the bride and bridegroom would therefore have been fasting before the wedding; after the ceremony the priest would bless and distribute some wine, cakes, and sweetmeats, which were then handed round to the company.Since in the old Catholic custom no-one may take Mass unless they have fasted since daybreak, this was literally a “break- fast” for the bride and groom, though others in attendance would not necessarily take communion and therefore would not necessarily have been fasting.The plausibility of this account is weakened by the fact that the Oxford English Dictionary does not record any occurrences of the phrase before 1850. An alternative hypothesis for the origin of the term is that the wedding breakfast is the first meal of a couple\'s married life, just as breakfast is the first meal of the day.

The pressure
Of course for the happy couple there will be a huge amount of pressure on the day , not only do you have family, friends, neighbours and passers by ogling at your every move ( and all part of the fun I must add !)  but for  Kate and William there will literally be millions of eyes scrutinising every second ,movement and gesture.For example Crowds of 600,000 people filled the streets of London to catch a glimpse of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer on their wedding day. They were married at St Paul\'s Cathedral before an invited congregation of 3,500 and an estimated global TV audience of 750 million - making it the most popular programme ever broadcast !No pressure then !! 

The Wedding Dress

When this type of pressure is on, then you need to look good and the dress is a hugly guarded and well protected secret  !.Traditionally, brides did not wear white wedding gowns. Through the 18th century, most brides just wore their Sunday best to their wedding. Red was a favorite during the Middle Ages in Europe. Other colours were worn for symbolic reasons: blue meant constancy and green meant youth. As years passed, white was worn as a symbol of purity. In biblical days, blue (not white) represented purity, and the bride and groom would wear a blue band around the bottom of their wedding attire (hence \"something blue\"). The Greeks are often associated with white for the wedding dress - they used white robes to symbolize youth, joy and purity whilst In korea  brides don bright hues of red and yellow to take their vows.If deciding wether to add a veil or not, then this may help ! 

The wearing of a Veil

Mystique and romance has surrounded the veil for more than one thousand years. Ancient Greeks and Romans thought the veil protected the bride from evil spirits. Brides have worn veils ever since and then thought to have been used to hide the bride from abductors, just as the similar dress of her bridesmaids was meant to do.But a more romantic interpretation evolved later which believed that concealment (as the bride\'s face beneath a veil) rendered what was hidden more valuable. Another early interpretation of the veil was that it symbolized youth and virginity.

 Ancient  Factoid : The \"something blue\" in a bridal ensemble symbolizes purity, fidelity, and love.

 
   The floral bouquet

The wedding bouquet formed part of the wreaths and garlands worn by both the bride and groom. It was considered a symbol of happiness For Ancient Greeks and Romans, the bouquet was a pungent mix of garlic and herbs or grains. The garlic was supposed to ward off evil spirits and the herbs or grains were to insure a fruitful union. Celtic bouquets included ivy, thistle and heather, If a bride carried sage (the herb of wisdom) she became wise; if she carried dill (the herb of lust) she became lusty. Flower girls carried sheaves of wheat, a symbol of growth, fertility, and renewal. Later, flowers replaced herbs and took on meanings all their own. Orange blossoms, for example, mean happiness and fertility. Ivy means fidelity; lilies mean purity.However in ancient Poland, whichever choice of flower worn , it was believed that by sprinkling sugar on the bride\'s bouquet kept her temper sweet Once you have arrived safely and the marriage ceremony has begun there will be the much awaited exchange of the rings !

The wedding Ring.

In ancient times, when life was much harder and oftentimes shorter, husbands practiced a superstitious ritual to ensure their wives\' spirits wouldn\'t leave too soon. The husband would wrap the bride\'s ankles and wrists with ropes of grass believing this would keep her spirit within her. Over the years, as religious beliefs evolved,  the meaning (and material) of the bonds evolved as well. Today, brides thankfully don\'t bind their wrists and ankles, only their ring fingers, and grooms have adopted the practice as well. The grass gave way first to leather, then stone, then metal, and finally to gold. The wedding ring has traditionally been worn on the third finger of the left hand because it was believed that a vein in this finger ran directly to the heart and hence gold as a precious metal was always used. The third finger of the left hand has become the customary wedding-ring finger for all English-speaking cultures. 

 Factoid ! Diamonds set in gold or silver became popular as betrothal rings among wealthy Venetians toward the end of the fifteenth century

Giving Away The Bride


The father who \"gives away\" his daughter at her wedding ceremony is following an ancient tradition that has evolved over hundreds, if not thousands, of years. The custom dates back to the time when a daughter was considered property, and the groom had to pay a price to her family before he could be permitted to marry his intended.In old times, female children were deemed to be the property of their fathers. When it came time for the daughter to marry and her father approved of the arrangement, he was actually transferring ownership of his daughter to the groom. Today, the act of giving the bride away is symbolic of her parents\' blessing of the marriage to the chosen groom.Once you have been given away and the rings have been exchanged then it is time to seal the deal with a kiss !

The Kiss

The first kiss a bride and groom share at the close of the ceremony has carried special significance through the centuries.
Many cultures believed that the couple exchanged spirits with their breath and part of their souls were exchanged as well.Kissing could however be influenced through the feeding rituals and animal instincts where the male would give food to the female from mouth to mouth.Once the kiss has been complete, and smiles adorn the congregation and wedding party, you then step out into the bright light of day to be rained upon by well wishes pelting grains !

Throwing Rice

One of the oldest wedding traditions, the custom of throwing rice, originated with the ancient Hindus and Chinese. In these cultures, rice is the symbol of  prosperity and fertility. Tossing it after the ceremony was believed to bestow fertility upon the bride and groom. Eating rice and other grains was thought to guarantee health, wealth and happiness for the newlyweds.  Factoide : If it rains more than rice on your wedding day then fear not for rain on your wedding day is actually considered good luck, according to Hindu tradition!  Once you have managed it past the rice and photographers ,you then find that some clever sole has tied old shoes to the back of your car, and if anyone was in doubt, they have also  sprayed “Just Married “across the rear windscreen ! 

 Shoes Tied on the Car Bumper

Brides\' shoes once were considered to be symbols of authority and possession. They used to be taken from her when she was led to the wedding place, and given to the groom by her father, effecting the transfer of his authority to her husband and as a sign that the husband now had possession of her (and she couldn\'t run away). The new husband then tapped her on the head to show his new role as her master.It is obvious why this doesn\'t continue, but it helps to explain why we tie shoes to the back of the get-away car. Incidentally, the ever-popular horn honking has its beginnings in the days when brides traveled in open carriages. They were an easy target for evil spirits, so defenders would use bells and firecrackers to scare them away.Once the celebrations are over then the next step is to ensure you are sober and strong enough to carry your beloved over the threshold !

 Carrying The Bride Over The Threshold

Generations ago it was considered lady-like for the new bride to be, or to appear to be, hesitant to \"give herself\" to her new husband, whether or not she truly was. At the threshold to the bridal chamber, the husband would often have to carry the bride over to encourage her to go in. An older meaning is that during the days of \"Marriage by Capture,\" the bride was certainly not going to go peacefully into the bridegroom\'s abode; thus, she was dragged or carried across the threshold. 

Factoid: Now the above info could be a problem if you live in Denmark, for brides and grooms traditionally cross-dressed to confuse evil spirits. Yes sure, now I`ve heard it all !!

 
  Honeymoons

In ancient times, the Teutonic people began the practice of the honeymoon. Teutonic weddings were only held under the full moon. After the wedding, the bride and groom would drink honey wine for one full moon cycle (thirty days). This \"moon\" (i.e., \"month\") became known as the \"honey moon.\" While the name survived, the purpose of the honeymoon changed. After the wedding, newlyweds would leave their family and friends to go and do what newlyweds are supposed to do. Today that purpose survives, only now a vacation is incorporated, usually to a romantic get-away locale. Today The Most Secluded & Romantic Honeymoon Destinations are Tahiti & Fiji with the top Romantic Caribbean Islands being  Antigua, St John, St Lucia, Belize  Factoid : Now if you think that all of the above has cost a pretty penny then how about this?.

One of the world`s most expensive weddings ever was the marriage of Sheik Rashid Bin Saeed Al Maktoum\'s son to Princess Salama in Dubai in May 1981. The price tag a mere $44 million
             Wedding Recipes with Royal Connections ........I have chosen these recipes out of many, as whilst they are classics ,they are still achievable for the home cook !
  
Judging the iTQi awards 2011 - 13/04/11
I am delighted to say that it was a great pleasure to be a part of the international judging panel of the iTQi awards 2011 held in Brussels .

The panel of judges consisted of 60 Leading culinary luminaries from across Europe, including several French Mailleur Ouvrier de France , Presidents from leading culinary institutes such as the Academy of culinary Arts, Association Culinaire Francaise, Euro toques, culinary Olympic teams from Portugal, Spain, and Greece, Master chefs from Italy to name but a few.
This year there were three British chefs representing the UK panel including Top TV Celebrity chef Phil Vickery, The brilliant Executive head chef of Alison Price catering, Richard Cubbin, along myself. 
Between us we tasted around 400 food products from around the world in a strictly controlled environment.
Each product tested was scrutinised to the endth degree, with the chefs seated in exam formation and with a "no conferring policy".
The blind tasting process allows for a complete independent method of judging, with no influences form packaging or producers.
I can honestly say that it is one of the most interesting and rigorous processes of  judging that I have had the pleasure of being involved with, although at this present moment in time , a swift retreat to the Gym is needed ! .
The awards announcement will take place in April.
Cooking a Worcestershire Rarebit on u-tube - 26/03/11
Cooking a Worcestershire Rarebit on u-tube 
A step by step guide to a perfect tasting snack, brunch or lunch !

       http://www.youtube.com/visitworcestershire
BBC1 TV Show 6th April 7.30 pm ! - 21/03/11
I am delighted to announce that Alan will be appearing on a new BBC 1 show "The Boat that Guy Built" on Wednesday 6th April 2011 at 7.30 pm.

Alan can be seen showing the lads how to create a Victoria sponge ! fun and games ahoy for the lads !!!
Alan`s Global internet voice radio show goes from strength to Strength - 21/03/11
Alan`s Global internet voice radio show goes from strength to strength!
Every Wednesday between 6.00 pm and 7.00 pm (GMT) TV Chef/ presenter, Author, Food Archaeologist and Broadcaster takes to the global airways for a one hour Foodie internet chat show.Alan has the freedom of  content, so food topics can range from Breast Milk Ice cream to  employment opportunities within the hospitality sector.

Alan says “my  aim is to create a food chat show that is  fresh, topical, fun, informative, and diverse, keeping up with the latest global activities and trends within the world of food, with a dash of historical facts and info to feed the mind as much as the palate.As food presentation is on the whole considered a visual medium, I want to create a show that allows the stimulation of other senses and create a platform for food and drink companies, cook book authors, chefs, restaurateurs, hoteliers, in fact anything and everyone related to the world of food and hospitality looking to obtain global coverage. I hope that my show may help to expose businesses on a global scale, maybe attract new customers, distributors, retailers, or help increase web sales, as I always say, every little helps, especially in these economically challenging times”.

Alan usually has two guests per week, allowing around 7 – 12 minutes of chat per guest, as well as his regular weekly contributor and co-presenter Chrissie Walker (Mostly Food Journal) .Chrissie has a weekly restaurant review slot on the show, proving very informative and extremely popular, and between the two  of them enjoy good food and great banter.The relaxed format allows for free flowing conversation, accessible to all, around the world.The station is now attracting over 570.000 listeners and growing month on month to listen please link here
http://www.internetvoicesradio.com/ 

Here are a selection of countries and regions currently listening each week.... 

Athens, Attica, Greece;Birmingham, UK,Corpus Christi, TX; Glossop, Derbyshire, UK;London, UK ; New York, NY ;Niagara Falls, Canada;North Miami Beach, FL;Oxford, Oxfordshire, UK, Four Pillars Hotel;Park Forest, IL; Phoenix, AZ; Pretoria, Gauteng, South Africa; Redding, CA;Rochester, NY; Sacramento, CA; San Francisco, CA, Black Oak Computers, Inc.; Somerton, Somerset, UK;Sterling Heights, MI; Tacoma, WA; Tel Aviv, Israel; Wetumpka, AL;Widnes Halton, UK;  Albany, GA;Essex, UK; Chicago, IL; Chinor, Oxfordshire, UK;Colquitt, GA;Crown Point,IN; Crowthorne, Berkshire, UK; Dallas, TX;East Alton, IL; Fullerton, CA; Furneux Pelham, Surrey, UK; Gary, IN; Jacksonville, FL;  London, UK ;Manchester, UK; Milton Jetbesm YJl  Perth, Western Australia, Australia; Norwich Cheshire, UK;Orange Home UK, Wells, Somerset, UK; Port Richey, FL; Port Saint Lucie, FL; Preston, Lancashire, UK; Saint Petersburg, FL;Sterling Heights, MI;Strawberry Hill Windsor And Maidenhead, UK;Surbiton, Surry, UK;Tarrytown, NY;  Widnes Halton, UK; Winter Park, FL;Woodstock, MD For more information about Alan , please log onto
www.alancoxon.comTo contact Alan by phone , please call 01386 830299To e-mail info@alancoxon.com