Martin Walker

Klaus Einwanger / © Diogenes Verlag
Klaus Einwanger / © Diogenes Verlag


I met Martin Walker at the Frankfurt Book Fair and I originally didn't know that I had to speak english... But in the end it all worked out and we had a great interview, were we probably were laughing half the time and looking at delicious photographs the other half! But know I can present you an interview, so that you too can get to know Martin Walker a little bit closer!

I was writing our oral conversation while he was answering my questions, so it might be, that the are a few mistakes in my english ;)

1. After Bruno's criminals, how did the idea of a cookery book come?

In every book with Bruno that I've written so far, I do also include recipes. So the readers began to ask: "when do we get a cookery"?

2. Is there a special type of dish you have specialized in?

All the dishes are more general, than special. However my wife and me have invented a few recipes. Such as a new Quiche, or which kind of wine to serve.

3. May you give me a few ideas which describe the specialty of "Brunos Kochbuch"?

The book is very authentic, it's definitely not made by a professional cook. What you see, is what you get; you can feel a wonderful sense of France and what our lives here are like. I've also written short stories, which make the book different, adding interesting anecdotes. The cookery all begins with people. Which kind of people you might meet on a market in France, who might work in a shop where they sell cheese, wine or meat. I usually go to the market aux? days a week, Tuesday is the only day off.

4. Do you have any rituals when you are writing? Just like drinking a cup of tea or listening to the radio?

Normally I have a glass of wine sitting on my table and my dog lying next to my feet. When I start to write I make myself writing 1000 words a day. It doesn't matter whether I am at home or on holidays. Three pages are my minimum! 

5. Has it been a different experience to write a cookbook than to write criminals?

Yes, absolutely! I have never ever thought in my life that I would write a cookery! With a criminal you are alone, with a cookery you are in a community! When I go to a French market I also talk to the people behind the table and that's what makes cooking enjoyable!

6. Is the cookery thought of to be only for Bruno's fans or to whom would you recommend it?

No, it's perfect for everybody who likes to eat, enjoys cooking or loves France.

7. What's your favorite cookery book?

There are several of them! I really like Elizabeth David's, Jamie Oliver's and Delilah Smith's kitchen. Also there is a female cook of the 1920's and 30's called M. J. K. Fisher.

8. Which kind of dish is not allowed to be left out in a cookery?

I really love anything combined with truffles. But my two absolute favourites in the book are "Aiguillettes de Canard Miel et Moutarde" and "Boeuf à la Périgourdine." Very traditional, but very tasty!

9. Who is cooking at your house?

Both, my wife and I. We often cook together, but other times my wife goes out with her friends while we guys stand in the kitchen cooking. We all live in a great community and share our vegetables.

10. How important is good food for both of you?

It's very important, we have to eat three times a day and all the food we use for cooking is organic and biological! We also enjoy going to restaurants. Our favourite restaurant of the whole world is in Perigord.

11. Do you like to have "Brunos Kochbuch" not only seen as a cookery but also as literature?

"Brunos Kochbuch" is not only a cookery with recipes, it's a book to read and to enjoy. My wife is often reading cookeries in bed and I would like people to read "Brunos Kochbuch" in bed.

12. "Brunos Kochbuch" is all about Périgord. You were born in Scotland, is this country still an important part of your life? 

Absolutely! Sometimes I invite friends to a Scottish whiskey degustation. 

13. What do you think about Scotland's recent decision referring to the Scottish referendum?

I was divided into two parts, into a "yes" and a "no". But in the end I am glad that Scotland stays a part of the United Kingdom!

14.What do you think of the British kitchen? Do you like the Scottish specialty haggis?

In my opinion the British kitchen serves one of the best food in the whole world, because it's very international. Because of the many Indian restaurants, chicken taka masala is said to be the traditional British dish, just as the "Currywurst" in Germany. 

Haggis is wonderful if it's well done.

15. If you had one wish free, what would it be?

Be a grandfather!

Many thanks for your answers!