If you ever have to go to Long Eaton, just don’t.
Hailing from the mighty Long Eaton, for the few of you that have never heard of this wonderful, wonderful place, it’s a small town on the outskirts of Nottingham. If you ever have to go there, just DON’T. My cooking experience started as soon as i could handle a spoon, my mum being a keen baker i’d always be helping out (eating cake cake mix) whenever I could. Every birthday I would always have the dopest cakes made, one time I had a Tracey Island cake for my party, but i wouldn’t let anyone eat it cause it looked so good. Turns out that’s not the right way for a 27 year old to act.
Watching ma duke cook traditional hearty english food from a young age taught me all the basics skills, from there i progressed with a little help from freinds, google and a lot of getting it wrong. I’m most in my element chowing pizza & curry of all types (curried pizza’s a win win) anything spicy actually, that paired with some of the UK finest ales, would be my perfect night in.
Cooking is purely a hobby right now, currently a “Mature” Graphic Design student, soon to be studying at Sheffield Hallam. Being in the Kitchen just helps me forget about everything else that’s going on, it’s really therapeutic (it wasn’t always that way), unless i’m trying something new then pots and pans be flying all over the place.
When I get stuck in, it tends to be on the “craftier” side of food, making my own bread, pickles, sauces, foraging your own ingredients and preserving them is so satisfying, I HATE waste. I really enjoy the challenge of making things from scratch, even if there’s an easier alternative, it helps learn the limitations of processes and ingredients you’re using.
This being said it took a lot of experimenting to find what i enjoyed doing in the kitchen, it wasn’t all fun and games, but with some perseverance I found my forte. Just stick at it and it will come, theres something for everyone it’s just finding what that is. Whatever you do though, as fun as experimentation is, learn the basic rules first, then break them, with a basic knowledge you’ll excel and enjoy it at the same time. And always have Garlic, Onion & Chillies in your cupboard, they’re kitchen staples.
Words by James Vanduzzi.