You love food but to what level are you prepared to take it? Here’s how to a live, eat and share food like a 21st century expert
We have become so in love with food that it’s bordering on phenomenal, everything we do focuses around or links to food! The term – foodie- was first coined in the early 80s and was usually associated with media critics and socialites who would chart restaurants and chefs based on their unique flair, obscure ingredients and creative presentation. But since the digital revolution took place, changing the way we live and communicate, being a foodie is open and available to anyone. In fact, it’s a job we can all carry out, you just need an inquisitive palette and a smartphone in your pocket.
Here’s some simple steps to reach 21st century ‘foodie’ status:
Step 1: Shop at the right places
If you see yourself as more of a cook, you should be obsessed with seasonality; sourcing the right ingredients at the right time of year in the freshest way possible. Local and organic produce is always going to be the best so take the time to visit farmers’ markets and food festivals and speak to the sellers as they will have good advice on preparing and storing your food. But you can still find good ingredients in the supermarket aisles if you know what you’re looking for.
Step 2: Eat at the right places
Tasting menus are a good way to get in on the foodie track. Many hotels and fine dining restaurants hold taster evenings which will give you a chance to sample the chef’s delights as well as the opportunity to meet other foodies. Being a foodie is about appreciating and experiencing food at its best but that doesn’t mean that you cannot eat at lower end establishments too – especially in today’s frugal society. If a restaurant, cafe, pub or oatcake shop is serving up delicious and unmissable food then a foodie would show credit where credit is due!
Step 3: Take a cookery course
There’s nothing better than learning about food from the masters. Enrol in a cookery course and ask questions about the recipes, ingredients and methodology so you can start to understand the process of cooking and creating dishes. Head chefs at restaurants will often hold their own masterclasses, which is great for meeting the professionals and getting involved in the foodie ‘scene’ where you live. But it doesn’t just begin and end with food! To be a true foodie (especially in Staffordshire) you’ll need to become an expert in the world of brewing – so why not take a craft beer masterclass too!
Step 4: Start a following
Think you’ve got what it takes to make some noise on foodie scene? Start a new Instagram and dedicate it to your foodie journey. You’ll be amazed at how many people will sign up for your updates – everyone enjoys looking at ‘food porn’. And because of this – photography is key.
Step 5: Take good photos
No one expects you to take lighting and set up the shot while you are having dinner in a restaurant but there are a few things to consider. Think about the position of the food on the plate, the natural lighting you have to work with and avoid using the flash if you can. Take a few photos as you can’t always trust your first try. If you are visiting a restaurant, tag them into your post and explain what you have on your pate – there’s nothing worse than having to guess a dish!
Step 6: Know your stuff
As a foodie, you should be on top of the latest food trends – whether that’s unbelievable food theatre, the latest American diner to open up or a retake on the oatcake. If it’s happening you are going to be talking about it. Find out where the best chefs are cooking, know which places serve the best gin cocktails and where to tuck in to the most indulgent and delicious desserts. Be a fountain of knowledge in your local area and be the person your friends and family call on for inspiration and ideas. You’ll also know where to avoid too!
Step 7: Be inspired
There’s also a new show on BBC Radio Stoke launching 7th June with Paula White called The Takeaway celebrating all things food and drink in Staffordshire and Cheshire on Thursday evenings at 7pm.