James Barber

A quote from the Globe and Mail, relaying the death of James Barber, cooking-show host of the Urban Peasant.

Mr. Barber, 84, died at his home on Thursday of natural causes. He was found at the dining room table, where he had been reading a cookbook.

A pot of chicken soup was simmering on the stove.

James BarberWhat a way to go. Doing what you love. For those who are into cooking but may not have heard of James, he reminded me of a male version of Nigella Lawson (but way before she appeared on the scene) in that he made cooking enjoyable and accessible to anyone. He didn’t mind getting his hands messy with the food he was cooking, actually revelling in it as part of the experience of cooking. In a sense, he was the opposite of Martha Stewart in that instead of making cooking appear to be for perfectionists, he showed that it could be a thoroughly casual and uplifting experience, something that anyone would want and enjoy doing at the end of a busy day to relax and unwind. Here’s to you James!