Diet Tips For Boxing Day
It was only a few weeks ago that Blumenthal joined Harold McGee for a blowout in San Sebastián, Spain. "Once a year we have these long weekend excursions â three to four full-length meals a day, plus wine and cocktails," says McGee, grinning.
This not only confirms his status as a gastro rock star, but also surely a world authority on how to recover from the kind of overindulgence that most of us inflict on ourselves at this time of year. Any tips? "Well, Hess and I try to run between meals when we're away," he reveals. "The first 15 minutes are hell, especially after a bottle of wine or two. It's not so bad after that."
My French friends tell me of a new phrase in Parisian slang: to "do a Depardieu". "Come the 26th, she's doing a Depardieu," they'll say of a friend planning to shed the Christmas pounds, after the Obelix-shaped French actor lost three stone during a 10-day water-only fast.
Of course, Depardieu has always been a fan of a liquid diet. When I interviewed him about his wine-making for The Spectator years ago, and asked whether he was a white or a red man, the tetchy actor replied: "Well, obviously whites are better in the mornings, but from lunchtime onwards I tend to prefer reds."
As today is the day for our big meal I will take the latter tip to heart.