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Marcus Wareing: Simply Provence | Preview (BBC Two)

Michelin-starred chef Marcus Wareing returns to BBC Two and iPlayer this year, and he is on a mission. He wants to discover the joys of simple seasonal French food and produce, and finally get an answer to the age-old question: can his beloved British food stack up against the French?

Provence is famous for its delicious simple food. Its climate and approach to eating is very different from the UK. Here the tomato is more popular than the potato, so it provides the ideal setting for Wareing's summer cooking adventure.

In each episode, Marcus takes on the locals to discover the authentic essence of southern French cooking. Set against the backdrop of a classic French townhouse in the heart of St Remy, Marcus tries to gain the local’s trust to get them to share their secrets from age-old traditions to simple taste sensations.

The series sees Marcus meet producers, chefs, and farmers to give him a hands-on experience, learning more about where his food comes from and the people behind it. Each day he leaves his townhouse, searching for authentic, French food, culture and the people passionate about it.

From taking part in an ancient olive cracking competition, to trying to butter up locals with Pastis prior to a game of pétanque or just heading to the local harbour to pick out the freshest catch of the day, Marcus immerses himself in all things French, simple and local.

He uses these experiences to whip up his own versions of French classics, hoping to add a British twist to the treasured traditional dishes. He then dares to serve them to the region’s most dedicated Francophiles, farmers, chefs and producers – with varying results.

This new series promises a celebration of flavours and tradition. From local cheeses and rotisserie chickens to fresh seafood and famous regional dishes, Marcus will capture the diversity of Provence's food landscape. And as ever, he will be doing what he does best – creating new dishes, and flavours to wow his dinner guests.

Marcus says: “I'm a self-proclaimed lover of French food and have dedicated my life’s work to perfecting the art of elite, French cuisine but, until now, have never stepped back to fully immerse myself in the culture, the people and the simple, yet delicious, food that is at the heart of this beautiful region. I can’t wait to take audiences on a deep-dive into Provence and create some simple dishes and flavour combinations that everyone will be able to try at home – it will really be a feast for the senses.”

Karen Plumb, Executive Producer, Plimsoll Productions says: “Once again, Marcus Wareing’s genuine passion to learn about food and the people whose lives revolve around it jumps joyfully off the screen.”

Commissioning Editor for BBC Daytime, Lindsay Bradbury comments: "This series will unlock the simple secrets and traditions passed down from generations and bring it to the masses. From the simple dishes to the sensational, Marcus has explored and delved deep into the French traditions to bring audiences a sunny delight, all from the comfort of their own living rooms.”

The series will air on BBC Two at 6.30pm and iPlayer later this year.


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