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The What's Cooking Podcast
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The What's Cooking Podcast

Author: Elizabeth Kerr and Kat Wood

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Beth and Kat are two lovers of all things food who bring you weekly insights into the adventures of fellow epicureans and their businesses. Focusing on the journey and not the destination, they will explore what gets their guests out of bed in the morning and what life looks like when you’re starting from scratch in this competitive sector.
50 Episodes
Growing a high impact business, drawing on Silicon Valley experience and foreseeing a new way of eating with Grace, founder of Spice Box.  For our final episode of the season and our fiftieth episode, we spoke to Grace, founder of SpiceBox. SpiceBox serve delicious, innovative food that “happens to be vegan.” Starting out selling from her front door, Grace has grown SpiceBox to a Walthamstow restaurant which serves brunch, lunch and dinner on site as well as delicious take aways - made all the better using their reusable Tiffin tins. We heard about Grace’s previous experience running a tech company in Silicon Valley and how she has drawn on these experiences to create a business focused on both micro and macro goals. Grace also told us about the sustainable thread that runs through the business and the nuances of becoming and staying environmentally friendly. We really hope you enjoy this final episode of season 5!Find SpiceBox on Instagram @eatspicebox and on their website us on Instagram @whatscookingpodcast, on Twitter @whatscookingpod or email us on
Demystifying kombucha, the learning curve of scaling up and building a business with friends - with Adam, co-founder of JARR Kombucha.For the penultimate episode of the season, we spoke to Adam - co–founder of JARR Kombucha. JARR are an East London based kombucha brewery who have based their business around creativity, connection and innovation. They create delicious kombucha in their classic flavours – original, passion fruit, ginger and recently launched raspberry – along with collaborations which allow them to further explore the possibilities of this amazing fermented tea. We discussed the benefits of building a business with your friends and the trust that goes along with this, as well as the importance of splitting roles between co-founders to play to the strengths of each team member. We also talked about the challenges of scaling up, finding the right investment partner and the thinking behind their toned back packaging and their journey of creating a new identity for kombucha within this growing category.Find JARR on Instagram @jarrkombucha and on their website us on Instagram @whatscookingpodcast, on Twitter @whatscookingpod or email us on
 Street food, supperclubs and launching a product with Dixie - chef and creator of Aphrodite’s FoodFor this episode we spoke to Dixie about her seriously impressive experience within the food industry. From growing up around artisan food at an early age to moving to London and starting a course at a catering college, Dixie has so many interesting stories to share from her career so far. A refreshingly honest insight into the highs and lows of working within food, we talk about the different avenues she has explored within the industry. We spoke about how her innovative pomegranate ketchup came to be, the process for designing the beautiful packaging, and the decision to keep the production at a small scale. Dixie also talks us through her experience on The Taste - a TV programme where chefs design the ultimate tasting spoon for Anthony Bordain, Nigella Lawson and Ludo Lefebvre. This episode is packed full of stories as we also hear about working in street food, starting a supperclub and we learn more about the projects Dixie is currently focusing on.  You can find Dixie on Instagram @aphroditesfood and on her website  Find us on Instagram @whatscookingpodcast, on Twitter @whatscookingpod or via email
Raising awareness of food waste, creating value from surplus and what it takes to run a crowdfunding campaign, with Jenny - founder of Rubies in the Rubble.For this episode, we sat down with Jenny, founder of Rubies in The Rubble – makers of “condiments with a conscience.” Rubies in the Rubble make delicious relishes, mayos and ketchup from ingredients which would otherwise be wasted. We heard about Jenny’s no fear approach - starting the business through her passion for raising awareness of the amount of food being wasted everyday and not being afraid of what people thought of her decisions. We also talked about their crowdfunding campaign, which was in full swing at the time of recording and ended considerably above target. We learned about the hard work and preparation that goes into a crowdfunding campaign and that it’s definitely not as easy as it sometimes appears. Jenny has been getting people to think about food in a different way since launching and continues to do so with all her products, celebrating food and taste. Find Rubies in the Rubble on Instagram @rubiesintherubble or online at Find us on Instagram @whatscookingpodcast on Twitter @whatscookingpod or via email
Maintaining trust, longevity and relevance in a 15+ year career and leading a successful multi-hyphen business with Dale - chef, nutritionist, presenter and author of 14 booksFor this episode we spoke to Dale about all the different elements of The Medicinal Chef, including: books, TV, podcasts, online programmes and Instagram. It's fascinating to hear how Dale's interest in nutrition started from such a young age and how this passion and drive for the subject propelled him into sustaining a career for over 15 years. We find out how the industry has evolved since then and how social media has increased accessibility and reach to give value to a much wider audience. We explore Dale's ethos around food and cooking and how this practical and accessible approach is woven throughout his work and the information he gives out. It's fascinating to hear how Dale has developed and continues to develop, many different strands of the business, allowing him to reach a wider audience. You can find Dale on Instagram and Facebook @themedicinalchef and on his website us on Instagram @whatscookingpodcast, on Twitter @whatscookingpod or via email
Winning MasterChef, writing a book and campaigning for better NHS meals with Saliha - cook, NHS doctor and author of new book Khazana.For this episode we spoke to Saliha about her experience as a contestant, and eventual winner, of MasterChef UK - we talked about the parallels between working in a high pressure kitchen and working as an NHS doctor and discussed how she balanced the two commitments during filming, alongside her family life. We also heard about her campaign for better NHS meals and better hydration in hospitals - why this is so necessary and what her plans are for bringing it to the forefront. Saliha talks about the amazing platform that MasterChef has given her and why she felt it so important to create a name for herself within the food industry to assist with her mission for change. Saliha also told us all about her book writing process - how the deal came about and the story behind Khazana. You can find Saliha on Instagram @salihacooks and on her website us on Instagram @whatscookingpodcast, on Twitter @whatscookingpod or via email
 Creating a network for chefs, promoting fair and equal working conditions in kitchens and what it really takes to put on an event - with Rav, founder of Countertalk. For this episode we sat down with Rav, pastry chef and creator of Countertalk – the new platform helping to connect chefs within an equal and supportive environment. We heard about the reasons behind Rav’s decision to start the Countertalk community and why it is so important to champion new talent in the food industry in a way that is inclusive and supportive. We also discussed the careers side of the site and talked about the criteria food businesses must meet to post a job. It was really inspiring to hear the passion Rav has for placing talented chefs into the right working environments. Countertalk also runs events - from supper clubs to talks and tastings – and we chatted about all the different elements that go into to planning and running these events, while keeping them affordable. Finally we discussed Rav’s work as a pastry chef, currently at Tart London’s new space, Wild by Tart, and the different consulting roles she has taken on around London. This is a really insightful conversation, possibly our most honest yet – a must listen for anyone who’s already a part of or is thinking of becoming a part of this exciting industry. You can find Rav on Instagram @ravneeteats and Countertalk on Instagram @countertalk and online at You can find us on Instagram @whatscookingpodcast, on Twitter @whatscookingpod. Get in touch via If you’re enjoying the podcast, please don’t forget to subscribe, review and leave us a star rating!
Creating a product with surplus bread, tackling food waste through positive action and putting the mission for change before profits with David, Head Breadwinner at Toast Ale. We spoke to David from Toast Ale about all things food waste and how to tackle it. We heard how Toast are making their ale using surplus bread – leading the way in a new side of the food industry and demonstrating how a change of view about what we consider unusable food can make a big difference. In focusing on their mission over profits, they hope to spread the word about the food waste issue. Toast give all of their profits to Feedback, the charity started by Toast founder Tristram Stuart, and in doing so are making real steps towards creating systemic change. We also talked about the Toast team and heard how they are creating an ethos that sidesteps traditional hierarchy to give every member an equal voice. We recorded this episode at Toast bread quarters within the Bankside sustainable workspaces – there is some background noise on the episode as it’s a bustling space but it’s a great conversation so we hope you’ll bear with us! Find Toast at or on Instagram at @toastale. Check out their Crowd Funder page at us on Instagram @whatscookingpodcast, on Twitter @whatscookingpod or drop us a line on 
Honing the book writing process, creating a community online and testing recipes with Elly Curshen, chef, food writer and more!  For this episode, we spoke to Elly Curshen, who's third cook book, Green, has just been published and is already finding huge success. Elly’s recipes have always been affordable, accessible and delicious and those in Green are no exception. We spoke in depth about the book writing process - how Elly has developed this and how her online community has a direct influence on what she includes in her books. Hearing about what happens after a book is published was so interesting – the promotion through food fairs, festivals and other events and, what sounds like the best part, seeing her audience recreating her recipes and sharing them with their own stories. We also talked about the other areas of work that Elly is able to give more focus to since closing her hugely successful and much loved café last September – including cookery courses and brand partnerships. Follow Elly on Instagram or check her website to find out more.  You can find Elly on Instagram @ellypear and online at You can find us on Instagram @whatscookingpodcast, on Twitter @whatscookingpod. Get in touch via  If you’re enjoying the podcast, please don’t forget to subscribe, review and leave us a star rating!
 Creating practical and stylish chef trousers for women, creating a pattern that fixes the issues with current options – drawing on personal experience - and keeping production in the UK with Maxine, founder of Polka Pants. Welcome back to The What’s Cooking Podcast, series FIVE!! We are delighted to be back with our first episode where we spoke to Maxine, founder of Polka Pants. Polka Pants create chef trousers for women which offer a practical and stylish solution to the issues that arise when female chefs wear trousers designed for men! We heard how Maxine’s personal experiences in professional kitchens lead her to start thinking about whether there should be another option for women working in the food industry. Using the design skills she’d developed while studying fashion, Maxine produced the pattern for Polka Pants and, after moving to London to prove her concept, the company received rave reviews from chefs in the city. Produced in London, Polka Pants are now sold all over the UK, US and beyond…You can find Polka Pants on Instagram @polkapants_ and online at can find us on Instagram @whatscookingpodcast, on Twitter @whatscookingpod. Get in touch via If you’re enjoying the podcast, please don’t forget to subscribe, review and leave us a star rating!
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