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Ainsley Harriott is one of the country's favourite TV chefs and presenters.
Ainsley trained at Westminster College and embarked on a career in London's top hotels and restaurants, starting out as a junior trainee at West End restaurant Verrey's, where he graduated to commis chef before moving to the Strand Palace as chef tournant. He also started his own catering company, catering for Princess Margaret and Elton John among others. With over 20 years' experience working in professional kitchens, Ainsley has worked for a variety of famous hotels and restaurants including the Dorchester, Brown's, the Hilton, the Westbury, Cafe Pelican and Quaglino's.
In the early 1 990s Ainsley worked as Head Chef of the Long Room at Lord's Cricket Ground and it was during one cricket season that BBC Radio asked him to present More Nosh, Less Dosh for BBC Radio 5. Following this he moved on to become resident chef on BBC TV's Good Morning With Anne and Nick. This in turn led to Ready Steady Cook, which aired in 1994 and has run for 21 series. Ainsley also presented Can't Cook, Won't Cook, his popular daytime cookery challenge, which ran on BBC1 for several seasons.
In addition to Ready Steady Cook and Can't Cook, Won't Cook, Ainsley has hosted the following television programmes: Ainsley's Barbeque Bible, Ainsley's Meals in Minutes (two series), Ainsley's Big Cook Out, Party of a Lifetime, The Hidden Camera Show, Gourmet Express and 50 Things to Eat Before You Die. In 2005, Ainsley presented City Hospital. He proved very popular in the role and hosted over 100 live daily shows from one of the UK's busiest hospitals. During 2007, he also hosted The National Lottery Draw Live on Saturday nights and appeared in the BBC's Take on the Takeaway. September 2008 saw him tracing his ancestors in BBC1's Who Do You Think You Are?
Ainsley has also enjoyed success outside of the UK, arriving on-screen in the USA in January 2000 with The Ainsley Harriott Show. On completion of more than 100 shows for NBC, he moved on to host the US version of his UK show, Ready Set Cook, for the Food Network. He also hosted Off the Menu - a 13-part cookery challenge show especially for South African television.
Ainsley is also a number one best-selling author and has 12 solo books to his name. He has sold more than two million books worldwide, with co-editions in Dutch, Danish, Slovenian, Romanian and American. Titles include: In the Kitchen (1996), Can't Cook, Won't Cook (1997), Ainsley's Barbecue Bible (1997), Meals in Minutes (1997), The Big Cook Out (1999), Gourmet Express One and Two (2000 and 2001), Low Fat Meals in Minutes (2002), All New Meals in Minutes (2003), My Favourite Hot and Spicy Recipes (2003), Friends and Family Cookbook (2004), The Feel Good Cookbook (2006), Fresh and Fabulous Meals in Minutes (2008), and Just Five Ingredients (2009). In 2004 Ainsley joined forces with the British Olympic Team to produce a cookbook of healthy fun recipes in Olympic Cookbook.
His other credits include: the TV voice of Covonia cough mixture and the face of Fairy Liquid. Ainsley's own-brand food products are a familiar sight not only in the UK's supermarkets but worldwide, particularly in his cous-cous and soup range.
All cast biography information reproduced on the TimeWarp site with permission.
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