The 7 Most Important Things We Learned From the "Two Fat Ladies"

Rachel Tepper Paley
March 17, 2014

Over the weekend, we said goodbye to Clarissa Dickson-Wright, half of the sassy duo on the beloved BBC cooking program "Two Fat Ladies." Dickson-Wright, who was only 66, followed her co-host Jennifer Paterson, who passed away in 1999 at age 71.

The plump pair famously entertained audiences as they cooked, flashing their quick wits and blatant disregard for anything remotely resembling health food. Nearly everything they cooked was indulgent, but you had to admire the ladies’ appetite for life… and appetite for everything else.

We wouldn’t recommend eating the dishes shown on “Two Fat Ladies” everyday, but certainly do take a page from Dickson-Wright and Paterson and find your own joie de vivre

With that hearty grain of salt, consider the seven most important things we learned from the “Two Fat Ladies.”

1. Lentils send vegetarians into a wild frenzy. Dickson-Wright and Paterson made no secret of their disdain for vegetarians, frequently mocking them throughout the “Two Fat Ladies”’ four-season run. Apparently, their scorn extended to the legumes themselves.

2. The major food groups are butter, lard, cream, and bacon fat. Oh, and more lard.

3. There’s no better way to travel than by motorcycle and sidecar. Dickson-Wright and Paterson heroically traveled the English countryside in a Triumph Thunderbird motorbike with a Watsonian GP-700 “doublewide” sidecar attached. It sold at auction in 2000 for £8,500, which today would be about $14,000.

Photo credit: BBC

4. It is perfectly acceptable to suddenly break into song. It’s perfectly charming, too.

5. Camping outdoors is overrated. Well, at least according to Paterson, who really did not enjoy being eaten alive by midges in this episode.

6. Some rules are made to be broken. We agree with the sentiment, though too often Paterson applied it to smoking. Still, we love the feistiness of her retort when Dickson-Wright suggests she might get in trouble for it: “I don’t care,” she declares.

7. The number on the scale? Sometimes it’s better not to know.