Who writes one hand in the cookie jar?
I do! I’m Charlotte, 33, and I live with my husband, Will, in a lovely part of South West London called Barnes Village. I’m fortunate enough to be a stone’s throw from the river and it never ceases to amaze me how beautiful it looks when the sun shines down and the rowers glide across its surface.
Whilst I don’t want to describe my husband and I as ‘foodies’, it’s fair to conclude that we live and breathe food and talk about it far too much. I think that’s no bad thing though.
As a family we’ve always enjoyed long lunches and dinners sitting snugly round the kitchen table (there are a lot of us) or when the suns out the BBQ is fired up and the meat gets scorched. Lovely crisp wine is drunk, conversations and giggles are had by all, and we spend many hours reflecting on happy memories and discussing new restaurants that we’ve been to or more accurately would love to visit (particularly my dad and I).
What’s the story?
I work in events and have therefore spent many days menu tasting and seeing beautiful dishes created to tie a party theme together. If the foods not up to scratch, then in my opinion, it’s not a great party and something must have got missed along the way.
When I organised our wedding day, I started with the food and worked back from there, with the centre piece being a beautiful tiered luxury cheesecake.
I have a deep love of cooking which can only be rivalled with my love of the gym. This is probably no bad thing as whilst I love eating healthy fresh foods, I also have a very sweet tooth which can’t be denied.
I have spent the last couple of years trying out a different recipe every evening in the hope of widening my knowledge of ingredients and cuisines. From nearly turning veggie over 10 years ago, I am now a fully fledged signed up carnivore with a passion for fresh local ingredients and mooching round farmers markets when the opportunity arises.
Why did you start the blog?
I had been thinking for a long time about writing about some of my cooking and baking adventures and if it wasn’t for my husband I’d probably never have got around to putting finger to keyboard to start documenting my experiences.
I tend to follow recipes that I’ve either happened across online or from blogs that I enjoy reading. I think over time, I hope I’ll have the confidence to begin to develop more of my own recipes. But in the mean time, I hope writing about the recipes I’ve tried will bring to the attention of other people, the wonderful recipes on offer out there.
What can always be found in your kitchen?
This is somewhat dependent on the time of the week. At the beginning of the week the fridge is bulging with fresh green salads, colourful vegetables and an array of nutritious fruits. By the end of the week though… everything is gone. I plan for every meal so I’m proud to say there is very little waste in our household.
There is a ‘baking cupboard’ full of different flours and the usual essentials to whip up a lemon drizzle cake at short notice.
And over the last couple of years we’ve tried endless different types of grains, wheats and nuts to expand the repertoire of ingredients we might use to bulk out meals beyond pasta and potato.
What gets you up each day?
We’ve been spoilt to live in London for over 10 years with some fantastic restaurants on our doorstep that we’ve been trying to tick off the long list, which actually seems to just keep on getting longer as new restaurants open Dining at them has only inspired me to try to recreate the dishes at home either through experimenting or finding recipes that are close enough to the real thing.
Our holidays are judged by the food we get to enjoy whilst we’re away and we have some wonderful memories of beautiful pastas from Italy, amazing prawns in Vietnam and stunning fish in Barbados. Hands-down though, you can’t beat British steak and the best place (in my opinion) to eat it is at Hawksmoor.
Favourite posts so far…
Tough question! And looking back now (18 months into starting the blog) I’m amazed just how many different posts I’ve added so far.
I think my top 5 and in no particular order are;
- Mango and passion fruit eton mess
- Slow-roasted shredded pork with thyme, sage, taleggio and rocket pizza
- Bay leaf cake with an orange glaze
- Peanut butter jammie dodgers
- Homemade lion bar
A final note
I hope you enjoy reading my culinary adventures and that it inspires you to spend more time in the kitchen trying some of the recipes too.
Feel free to get in contact or add some comments, I’d love to hear from you.