Reality Bites January 16, 2018

by Greer Get To Know Us

Our recipe developers do an amazing job of coming up with nutritious, simple, delicious meals week in week out. Of course, they’re only human, so we asked them to ditch the dirt on their greatest and not-so-great cooking moments. It’s time to meet our team and find out what makes them tick!

Meet Meg

meet our team

  1. What’s your background, and what’s your role at HF?

I’m a qualified nutritionist turned foodie! I started developing recipes that I gave my patients to show them how to add more veggies into their diets, I then just moved right into recipe development as a full time role! I’ve worked on editorial recipe development for cookbooks and websites and now I’m a full-time recipe developer here at HF.

  1. When was the moment you fell in love with cooking?

I’ve always loved being in the kitchen from a young age. But I realised that I was going to make food a big part of my life once I finished reading Cooked by Michael Pollan. After being completely captivated by an entire chapter on sautéing onions and carrots I realised that this was somewhat unusual, so took up cooking onions and carrots as a job!

  1. Let’s get real – what’s your biggest cooking disaster? Did you manage to salvage it or was it a lost cause?

Oh my, so so many. But recently I made a fish soup. When I wasn’t looking, my housemates snuck and ate a little bit. They couldn’t keep it a secret because they thought it was 100% the worst thing they’ve ever eaten and have coined it “The Hot Cup Of Ocean” and tell people way too often how bad it was. They won’t let me forget it.

  1. What’s a real cooking tip you think everyone should know?

Thou shalt add sea salt flakes to everything. Method: Sprinkle over your meal, then repeat.

  1. Do you own any kitchen gadgets you absolutely don’t need/never use?

Nah, my kitchen equipment is super light on. The only gadget I have is a julienne peeler and It’s been the biggest game changer for me! Just peel carrot or zucchini with it and you instantly have a Instagram-worthy meal.

  1. Sweet or savoury tooth? Why?

Completely and utterly savoury. I’d prefer a slice of lasagna over a slice of cake any day. I love really rich, salty, fatty foods, read: pork belly. Savoury food for me is so satisfying and deeeelicious. People find me odd when they realise I don’t really like chocolate!

  1. Who are you inviting to your ultimate dinner party? You get 4 guests, living or dead, real or fictional.
  1. Michael Pollan (food writer)
  2. Ed Sheeran (all round legend)
  3. John Olsen (Australian artist – to nut out his opinions on creativity)
  4. Lucy (my bestie who just moved away to New York and is equally as foodie obsessed as me!)

We’d eat locally food grown from around Sydney, perhaps a nice lamb roast with some roasted seasonal veg and, of course, some good wine. And cheese for dessert!

  1. What do you make when you can’t be bothered cooking?

Just a big fry up of eggs ‘n’ veg. I just chuck old, wilting veggies into a pan with some curry powder and chilli flakes and crack in a couple of eggs. Usually served on buttered sourdough.

  1. What’s the most underrated vegetable in your opinion?

It would have to be the brown onion. Once slow cooked in a pan they become amazingly sweet and add so much flavour to any dish. Onions are also a good source of prebiotics, providing fuel for all the good bugs in your gut to flourish. And they’re cheap as chips!

  1. What’s your favourite thing to do with a potato?

Haha! Erica has a running joke that I’m low key obsessed with potatoes. I love simple double cooked potatoes (boiled and then roasted in a lot of olive oil and sea salt), or grated in a rosti!

  1. Pasta or pizza – one’s gotta go. Which do you keep and why?

I’m not a huge fan of Italian, so would happily ditch both.

 

Meet Erica

meet our team

  1. What’s your background, and what’s your role at HF?

Science! I got into food development after studying for my masters degree in food science. I like how cooking is very creative and yet also very technical. After university, I started working in menu development for a high street food chain in London, and more recently jumped over to the other side of the world to come and work for HelloFresh! My role here is recipe development which includes coming up with recipe ideas, writing, cooking, editing and most importantly eating the recipes that go in our boxes!

  1. When was the moment you fell in love with cooking?

I fell in love with cooking because I was born in love with eating. Being able to cook meant being able to eat all the food I daydreamed about!

  1. Let’s get real – what’s your biggest cooking disaster? Did you manage to salvage it or was it a lost cause?

I went on holiday with a group of friends a couple of years ago and we decided to do a Come Dine With Me competition. Is that a very English reference? It’s basically a show where four strangers take it in turns to host a dinner party and get rated on their cooking and entertaining skills! I burnt the coconut rice and because we were in the middle of the French countryside had nothing to substitute with! We all went to bed very hungry that night and I spent the rest of the week trying to scrape the ash from the bottom of the pan!

  1. What’s a real cooking tip you think everyone should know?

Make sure the pan is really hot before you add your food and don’t overcrowd it! It seems like so much more effort to have to cook in batches or use two pans but the result is so worth it!

Also the hottest part of a chilli is actually the white pith and not the seeds. Make sure you remove that too if you’re trying to reduce the level of heat!

  1. Do you own any kitchen gadgets you absolutely don’t need/never use?

Anyone that has ever lived with me would tell you that my ice cream maker, pressure cooker, spiralizer, bread maker and pasta maker are an unnecessary use of cupboard space. I would of course argue that they are all essential!

  1. Sweet or savoury tooth? Why?

Savoury! There’s so much more variety with savoury food.

  1. Who are you inviting to your ultimate dinner party? You get 4 guests, living or dead, real or fictional.

Good question! David Attenborough because he has the most amazing stories in the world. Anna Jones who is a fantastic British vegetarian chef. J.K. Rowling because I have lots of unanswered questions about Harry & co and Ed Sheeran because I think we would be best friends!

  1. What do you make when you can’t be bothered cooking?

I know it’s a cliché but avocado on rye toast with lime juice, coriander, red chilli and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil!

  1. What’s the most underrated vegetable in your opinion?

Eggplant! Our dietician, Hannah, and I love nothing more than roasting up a whole eggplant for lunch in the office. It’s really delicious.

meet our team

In-house nutritionist Hannah and recipe developer Erica get down to brass tacks.

  1. What’s your favourite thing to do with a potato?

Roast them in goose fat until they’re really crispy and serve with lashings of gravy!

  1. Pasta or pizza – one’s gotta go. Which do you keep and why?

That’s like asking me to choose between children! I’d have to keep pasta because I think the nicest bowl of pasta in the world would top the best pizza in the world. Sorry pizza, I still love you!

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