Animal activist, cookbook author, photographer and co-founder of the nonprofit Meat Free Monday, Mary McCartney has begun hosting her new vegetarian cooking show in partnership with the Food Network, a platform that shares cooking tips and recipes. Named ‘Mary McCartney Serves It Up’, the six part series aims to promote plant-based cooking and recipes among the show’s audience.
Available to watch on the streaming platform discovery+ (currently for US viewers/IP addresses only), McCartney has spent years sharpening her cooking skills, and with the new show, she is sharing her recipes with the world.
Growing up in a vegetarian family, watching her mother, the photographer and animal rights activist Linda McCartney in the kitchen led Mary to develop a passion for cooking. Explaining her love for cooking only vegetarian meals, McCartney said: “I eat meat-free because of the environment and climate change, and animal welfare. The facts say that eating a plant-based diet is one of the most significant things you can do if you want to help the environmental impact.”
For a while, McCartney wanted to film her cooking show but when the lockdown was imposed, she was’t sure it would ever happen. However in June, Discovery+ asked her if she’d be interested to do a show and in July, they begun filming. In an interview with People, McCartney shares that the series was “put together through the lockdown, through the pandemic.”
I eat meat-free because of the environment and climate change, and animal welfare. The facts say that eating a plant-based diet is one of the most significant things you can do if you want to help the environmental impactMary McCartney
The six part series will see her cooking dishes like turmeric tofu noodles, moreish mushroom salad cups, banoffee cheesecake, sticky crispy cauliflower bites, maple vodka grilled peaches and many more. McCartney will co-host with a coterie of plant-minded celebrities including Kate Hudson, Mark Ronson, Liv Tyler, Gayle King, Dave Grohl, Cameron Diaz and Nicole Richie.
McCartney says she regularly cooked for her dad, legendary musician Paul McCartney, during lockdown, sharing that he was busy recording new music. “When we were in lockdown together, he was recording McCartney III, the album. He’d be recording in the studio, and then he’d come back, and he’d put it on in the kitchen and play it while I was heating up and finishing off dinner. That’s probably the best case scenario for him, like having family around, listening to music, and having dinner served. He really is so great to cook for because he really appreciates home cooking.”
Highlighting that they are a sandwich-obssesed family, McCartney explains that her mother was a New Yorker, so they grew up on deli sandwiches. “You know when you go into a New York deli, and you just stack them high? Here in England, traditionally, it’s a little bit different than that.”
In addition to the show, McCartney is working on a cookbook, tentatively called ‘Feeding Creative’, in which she hopes to prepare meals for creatives she looks up to and after they’re done with their meals, click a portrait of them. She has also begun research for a self-directed documentary ‘If These Walls Could Sing’, about the history of Abbey Road Studios.
In September of last year, a poll found that nearly 60% of the American public are now transitioning to a flexitarian or plant-based diet. Other surveys conducted earlier last year, showed that there is a massive interest globally to transition to a plant-based diet or switching out animal products for plant based alternatives as a direct result of the pandemic.
Lead image courtesy of Mary McCartney.