I think the BBC likes to have Mary Berry and me around to rebut the charge of ageism.
It was hugely helpful to me, being South African. I have never felt uncomfortable in posh society because I don't see what it is that I'm meant to be bowing the knee about.
My first taste memory is of our nanny in South Africa making white bread sandwiches with salad cream, which was potato mashed with a cheap mayonnaise thing with bits in it of - I suppose - pickled cucumber. I absolutely loved them.
Now the look of the book dictates the sale. In my day you could still buy a good cookbook in paperback with no pictures at all. I doubt if that would sell today. But those books were much used: they lived in the kitchen and got splattered with custard and gravy.
What I want to do is produce really delicious food. I want it to look nice, because when you see food you should want to eat it. You shouldn't be saying, 'Oh my goodness, isn't the chef clever, he can weave the Eiffel Tower out of carrot sticks.'
I'm not clever. But I am level-headed, hard-working, dogged.
It takes several doses of any veg before children like it, but once they do they'll like it for life. You wouldn't give up on a child who didn't want to learn to read. Learning to eat is every bit as important.
I was elated when I found out my first novel, 'Leaving Patrick,' about a woman who walks out on her husband, was going to be published.
I'm a good cook, I am not a great cook. I'm an absolute fraud.
I was an intellectual groupie. Still am.
One summer I was made housekeeper to my own family, making menus and shopping lists. It was my mother's idea of teaching me to be a grown-up. The main thing I remember is my father being so delighted to get roast duck.
I don't like Johannesburg, where I grew up. Everybody lives in 'gated' buildings, is paranoid about crime and is always talking about being mugged. It's not a very joyful place.
I'm not saying I'm proud of the fact I had a long affair with a married man, but it did help my business. By the time I married and had children I had the business under my belt.
People often ask what my favourite food is, but the answer depends on what I last ate. I love sausages and mash. But if I'd already eaten them for lunch, then you asked me at tea-time, I'd probably answer 'crab salad.'
Any woman will tell you after the menopause, nobody whistle at her, well - that's just the beginning. As you get older people don't want you at their parties, we all are prejudiced about old people.
I came through the Sixties so I was perfectly aware of drug-taking but I came from South Africa and we were brought up in quite an old-fashioned way. If I went to a rave or a party, I'd be behind the barbecue flipping the burgers. I wasn't out there partying.
All I need for a perfect holiday is sun and some peace and quiet. Those make for perfect book-writing conditions.
My husband John's and my breaks are often very culture heavy. He cannot pass a museum without venturing inside, so we tend to see a lot of architecture and so-called places of interest.