My name is Jane and I am a passionate cook. I come from a large family where food has always been a great pleasure. One of my earliest memories is sitting round my Grandparent’s kitchen table with mountains of food on it. My Nana Rita’s signature dish was her mash potato, which my Aunty Teresa has told me, I will post it soon. My mum is also a great cook, her roast dinners are always special.
I wasn’t always a good cook. My Mum was so great that she was a hard act to follow. When I was a teenager I didn’t want to get stereotyped as a girly girl so I used to stay out of the kitchen. I realised how silly this was when I started university. I shared a room with a lovely girl from Leeds called Susanne, she could cook more than me, but not a lot more. We got asked whether we wanted to join the cooking rota with the 4 Third year boys who shared the house. As a test they cooked a Roast Sunday dinner and we were asked to make the dessert. We made a trifle. I think we put too much water in the Jelly, nothing set and it was a complete disaster. The boys cooked a wonderful dinner but their portion sizes were about 4 times the amount I would have eaten normally so both sides decided it would be best if we cooked separately!
From that point on cooking was something I knew I needed to be good at. I got some books and practiced with my Mum and have never looked back. As a student I used the book “Grub on a Grant”, we cooked our way through it. When I got married my grandmother in law asked me whether I wanted some help with some more traditional family favourites. She kindly wrote down how to do a Sunday Dinner and bought me a great beginners cook book. My Nanny Charlotte used to get all of the second hand cook book she could for me. She could tell that I need the help.
It’s much easier today to learn. In the UK there are several different cooking programmes on per day. The internet and You Tube also make it easy. But there is so much info out there it is hard to find a good recipe and if you do find one it is sometimes hard to find it again!
The idea behind this website is to capture friends and family favourite recipes whether they are new or old. The site name is based on the nick name that most of us Beashel’s were called whilst we were growing up. Most of us tend to use a recipe when making cakes or desserts but when it comes to main meals we don’t. Tom is now starting out at Uni and he has asked what recipe I use for “X” and its simply in my head. So this an attempt to get them written down.
We have been living in Germany for 6 years with my boys. Living away from home has meant I have had to learn to make a number of traditional British dishes from scratch that you could normally buy in the UK e.g. mince pies and scotch eggs. Living in Germany has definitely changed our food tastes we now all prefer mayonnaise with our chips/pommes and we can’t cope with such a hot curry anymore. We came on a family trip to Duesseldorf before made the decision to move here, the great Schnitzel and Bratkatoffeln definitely influenced the move, I will add a version of this to the website at some point. I have been trying to improve the international reputation of English cooking one cake at a time, hopefully I have had some impact. My German cooking skills have developed faster than my language skills and I look forward to sharing some of these recipes over time. My friends have also promised to submit some family favourite recipes.
You will find a mix of recipes on the site; healthy, British Classics, International favourites and indulgent ones. Most of the recipes here have a few pictures in the gallery to help the less experienced cook. I am also planning on having some “Free From” recipes for those with food allergies. As a family we have suffered with Type 2 diabetes, I had it whilst I was pregnant and my Aunty Teresa currently has it. I have a few Low GI recipes, which I will publish and would love to have some of your ideas.
I hope you like the site and have some recipes you would like to submit. It would be great to have a bit of a background story as to why the recipe is special for you. Please can you write the recipes in your own words, so we don’t get in trouble from copyright issues, also all photos need to be original. Please feel free to comment on the recipes and good luck with trying them.
Below are a few family pictures from the archives. I am trying to get hold of a few more good ones. Jamie always pulled a silly face from the age of 2 up to to 15. How time flies. They are feeling a bit shy about their current pictures be on here, they look very different now. I will have to work on them!