Five years from concept to delivery: this week, I’ve finally published the book.” A cook’s tour: Baking Blind goes global” is now out worldwide on Kindle and Amazon via their in-country weblinks. It’s the tale of cooking across six continents, the amazing people we met, surviving hair-raising adventures and, of course, the near-fatal accident alongside some 100 authentic international recipes and links to over 50 free cooking demos.
The blurb: Blind cook shares death-defying experience, prize-winning world tour, recipes and much more in her triumph and near-tragedy life story.
Noam, professional fine dining chef, said: “Penny is a force of nature … whenever something seems impossible, I remember how she made her crazy dream come true.”
Getting this far has been part of the continuing recovery: giving me a purpose in life and, at last, a sense of closure. I’d expected to be at this stage years ago but life intervened.
I’m planning a bit of a launch at the end of April: two charity dinners sponsored by my favourite local restaurant with proceeds going to Open Sight which supports visually impaired people in Hampshire – I’ve been doing the on-line cooking demos for their members and others throughout the pandemic alongside blogging a “Covid cookbook.” Next, there are speaking engagements and training sessions lining up in the diary.
I am trying to showcase the reality of living with disability: we are as ambitious and capable as anyone else with just a little help and generosity. The book captures the voices of the people I met who championed the same theme in their own lives.
And there’s the naval thread too. Snippets of my career in the Women’s Royal Naval Service and the Royal Navy to echo the achievements of James Holman, that 19th century fellow officer who was also blind when he travelled the world and wrote his own adventure tales. He inspired the international prize that funded my own quest (although I suspect that fame and fortune resolutely remain a long way off for me).
I’ve just done a little radio interview about life and work: https://audioboom.com/posts/8052225-activating-enterprise-episode-9-penny-melville-brown
The next Open Sight free on-line cooking demo at 1030 on Monday 11 April is all about the easiest roast lunch for Easter entertaining. Sign up at: https://roast-lunch-open-sight.eventbrite.co.uk