James May: Oh Cook – When is it released on Amazon Prime Video? What is he cooking? All you need to know

No, it’s not an April Fool: the motoring presenter really will be sharing his own easy-to-cook recipes in this new Amazon Prime Video food series.

By Alex Fletcher Published: 2 November 2020 - 1.00pm
James May with some diish on his food series Oh Cook

The Covid-19 pandemic has given lots of us time and inspiration to take up a new hobby in 2020. And The Grand Tour presenter James May has taken it one step further with a surprising new TV series for Amazon Prime Video.

Taking a break from cars, booze and banter with Richard Hammond and Jeremy Clarkson, May will showcase his talent in the kitchen.

James May: Oh Cook, a title inspired by The Grand Tour presenter’s infamous (and unrepeatable) catchphrase, is a cooking series from the perspective of someone who can’t really cook.

Talking to BT TV about why he wanted to dabble in cookery, May said:   "’d always fancied doing it since I did some YouTube cooking videos when I was essentially unemployed. And the crew I worked with regularly talked about it for a number of years as a bit of a joke. But then one day, we just said, ‘why don’t we do it for real?’.

"So we just went out and did it, presumed that we could pretend it never happened if it didn’t turn out very good, but ended up carrying on going – that’s often the danger with these things!"

Here's everything we know about the new series coming in November to Prime Video...

Watch the trailer for James May: Oh Cook!

"It's not burnt, it's just well done."

"Celebrity chefs can't actually cook."

"Horse's a**e".

"We've learnt nothing."

James May promotes his new cookery series in his own unique way with a trailer that gives you a (slightly burnt) flavour of what's to come. 

When is James May: Oh Cook released on Amazon Prime Video?

James May presenting his cookery series Oh Cook on Amazon Prime Video Prime Video

James May: Oh Cook is available now on Amazon Prime Video

May’s first ever cookbook, titled Oh Cook! 60 Easy Recipes That Any Idiot Can Make is also out now.

There are seven 30-minute episodes in the series.

Amazon would just like to mention one thing...

James May is not a chef. But that’s the whole point: you don’t need to be a brilliant cook to make delicious food. Transporting us to the Far East, the Med, and the local pub – all from the comfort of a home economist’s kitchen – he’ll knock up delicious recipes that you can actually make yourself, with ingredients you can actually buy. And all without the usual television cooking format trickery.

What is James May: Oh Cook?

James May gets his own cookery series Oh Cook! on Amazon Prime Video Prime Video

No, it’s not an April Fool. And no, it’s not a prank from Clarkson and Hammond on The Grand Tour.

Following on from his Our Man In Japan travel series, James May has now been given a cookery show by Amazon Prime Video.

This isn’t going to be Michelin star cooking or MasterChef standard fine dining, but it will offer ideas and inspiration for viewers who can’t, won’t or have never cooked before.

“I’m delighted to be back working with Amazon Prime Video but in a way you may not have seen me before,” said May.

“I’ve arrived at the age where I spend most of my day thinking about my next meal, so I made a TV series about it.

“Cooking your own curry is so much more satisfying than ordering a take-away, even though it won’t taste as nice.”

Talking exclusively to BT TV about some of the kitchen disasters in the series, May said: "I made a hash that goes in the bin. I felt we should show that because there was no getting away from it. It was terrible.

"I like honesty in TV and if something goes wrong, we should say it went wrong and explain why.

"But everything else was edible – some it was actually quite nice. There weren’t any fires. There weren’t any significant injuries. 

"I am actually trying to cook on the show, I’m not faking it or presenting it, I’m doing it. I can see why chefs get temperamental. I now sympathise."

Across the series, James will show viewers that if you can cook a few things passably well, you can actually cook anything.

The series will see James attempt some of the 60 recipes he has had to learn for his forthcoming cookbook.

Each episode will cover a specific cuisine theme including Pasta, Pub Classics, Indian, Cakes, and Roasts, and will feature three recipes each alongside some quick-fix meals that can be created from the staples in your cupboard.

Wobby jelly pasta baby

If the idea of James May getting his own cooking show wasn't weird enough, he's now got his own spectacular mash-up video featuring some of his finest and most unusual dishes in the series. Including the truly staggering "wobbly jelly pasta baby".

If 2020 continues the ways it's been going, this surely an early contender for this year’s Christmas No.1?

When is The Grand Tour coming back?

Clarkson, Hammond and May on The Grand Tour Prime Video

Don’t worry, James May’s new solo shows doesn’t mean The Grand Tour is gone for good.

The series is taking a break from multi-episode seasons, but the trio are continuing to film specials in which they take on some of their craziest and biggest challenges ever.

The next special, which will be released before the end of 2020, will feature Clarkson, Hammond and May on a trip across Madagascar.

May has described their trip to the tropical paradise as “arduous” and “sweaty”, but also their most “beautiful” episode ever.

The trio also shot a new special in Scotland during the summer, under social distancing and coronavirus restrictions.

May told BT.com: "It was nice to get back to doing what we do. And it was nice to see the crew again. I had seen Clarkson and Hammond for some very distant meetings, from the opposite sides of the garden, but I hadn’t seen the crew for a long while. Many, many months. The best part of a year in fact. And doing it in a bubble, we turned out to be quite good at it.

"We did it in area of Scotland with not many people. We didn’t interact with the locals really. There were complicated systems set up for cleaning everything and it was a bit tiresome going through lots of procedures and being tested every day, but it didn’t get in the way of filming to be honest.

"We filmed in the normal way we always do. It’s the peripheral stuff that’s a bit tiring. We couldn’t go to the pub, but there was no pub anyway."

What other Grand Tour spinoffs are coming?

Jeremy Clarkson on The Grand Tour Prime Video

Richard Hammond is teaming up with Mythbusters star Tory Belleci for an epic six-part series in which the duo are shipwrecked in mysterious circumstances and stranded on a remote yet beautiful desert island.

Rather than sitting around waiting to be rescued, the pair decide to take matters into their own hands as they use all of their engineering and expert scientific prowess not only to survive, but to construct an out-of-this-world, paradise island playground.

Meanwhile, Jeremy Clarkson is working on a series following his adventures as a farmer with the working title, I Bought A Farm.

Filmed over the course of the farming year, the series will show Clarkson like you’ve never seen him before. He began filming in autumn 2019 and the series will observe the highs and lows of what Jeremy hopes will be a rural idyll but which could just as easily become a rustic nightmare.

Watch James May: Oh Cook from Friday, November 13 on Amazon Prime Video.

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