I am: Always hungry
I'm allergic to: Shellfish
I'd rather not eat: Raw fish, anchovies, oysters, shellfish, offal
I'd rather eat: Organic, non processed, non gm, ethically sourced food
I run a business making high quality, super tasty curry paste, with no icky additions and no bulking agents. It's all about pure fresh flavour. My food isn't all curry though and I love to make British and French classics as well as food from a variety of cultures.
So a little about me..... Not that you’d know when you hear me, but I was born in Burnley. I can’t say it’s influenced my cooking, but being from The North, I think, it has instilled in me a certain set of values.
Food was always made from scratch and I remember the kitchen of our house in Stockport better than any other room in the house. My first culinary memories are of shelling peas sat on the back door step.
Things changed for us as a family when we moved to Abu Dhabi when I was four or five. Suddenly, we were no longer in Stockport with no money and no prospects, we were living in an entirely new culture with hope lapping at our tiptoes as we stood for the first time looking out at a blue sea. I think until then I thought that the sea was mud grey .
The food culturally in Abu Dhabi was so varied. The restaurants there were very good and we were introduced to a lot of different world foods. Indian and Bangladeshi curries and Lebanese stuffed breads and salads.
I loved spending time cooking with my mum in the kitchen. From as soon as I could reach the counter top she had me stirring, making garlic butter, making stock, then chopping onions and making salads. By the time I was about nine I could make a Spaghetti Carbonara on my own. I made a fair few spaghetti and scrambled eggs first though!
During my school years I started to cook curries more and more and when I won the cookery prize at school at the age of 16, I gained some confidence in my ability.
Over the coming years at university, I spent time cooking for friends and family whilst studying first a Degree in Psychology and then a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology. Food continued to be my passion and making curries still my favourite kind of cooking.
It was around this time that I met my now Husband, Dom. From the very beginning of our relationship, I was cooking for him, and trying to impress him with my food. He requires a gluten-free diet and I have strived to cook the very best gluten-free food for Dom over the 10 years that we have been together, and he has been the biggest champion of my food. He has encouraged me to take my first foray into making food as a business and still raves about my home cooking. He is half French and we have spent a lot of time in France with his family extended family, who don’t speak English. The food there is amazing, and I love the ethics there that quality food is for all, not just the wealthy.
The friends I have made during these last nine years have been the friends that will stay with me for life. The climbing community friends I've made are the best eggs I have ever come across and I take great delight in cooking at huts trips where we go away to climb in group of between seven and 30.
The friends that I have made through my sister have been so hugely supportive. We hold a Tuesday Night Supper Club where we rotate to each other’s houses and have dinner. They have helped me to believe that this business can work, and I have tried all of my curries out on them at one point or another, first making them at my sister’s hen do four years ago and at another friend’s hen do subsequently.