I have a confession to make. If there was a self-help group for collectors of cookery books, I’d have to attend in an effort to curtail my habit. The cookery circle would likely meet in some drab church basement, we’d sit in a circle and I’d offer: “Hi my name is Mick and I am addicted to cookery books.” I’d tell a tale of not being able to pass by a book store, gradually circling closer and closer to the “C” shelves, then browsing the books on food and recipes. And invariable I’d succumb to one book or another, or another and another … I have one on Sri Lankan cooking with lists of ingredients that are impossible to find in the stores of Britain, Ireland or Spain. There is no substitute for murunga or Maldive fish paste, so that book is hardly ever used. Ok, never used — who am I trying to kid? I have another on Lebanese mountain cooking which also has ingredients that are difficult to substitute. Imagine walking into a shop in Ireland and the conversating would go something like: “Excuse me, but do you have any baharat?” I’ve two on cooking like a caveman with a fad called the Paleo diet. They cut out things like sugar and salt, dairy and things like potatoes. The trouble is t...