I started oven gazing at 2yrs old my mum recalled, which was just as well as she preferred painting to cooking. My dad was the real cook in our family but he worked long hours when I was a kid and always got home late. By the time I was 11, I was preparing the majority of the family meals and was also in charge of family parties and events – my chocolate éclairs and Danish pastries were always a big hit. I thought I wanted to be an artist and rejected catering as a suggested career. Art was not for me in the end and I spent 12 years cooking in restaurants before finally doing my first food degree when I was 31 leaving the University of North London with a first in Food & Consumer Studies in 1992. I spent 4 years teaching Home Economics at South Bank University before joining Sainsbury’s as a product development manager running the team that created ‘on pack’ recipes and in store leaflets. When my husband got a job in Singapore we packed up home and started a life abroad, which also included stints in Taiwan and Miami. This move also saw the start of my freelance food writing career which was consolidated by being the editor of two magazines whilst in Taiwan and contributing to several others.
Coming back to the UK in 2005 I got involved with Active Kids Get Cooking and other food education initiatives. During this time I developed a passion for food photography, which has now become an important part of my working life. In 2007 I decided to do an MSc in Food Policy, which was one of the most educationally rich experiences of my life. This also fuelled my interest in buying locally produced food from independent small businesses that keep employment and money within the local community.
The chance to put all the skills and interests that I have developed over my food career in one place is the inspiration for this blog. When I first came to live in this area Surrey seemed to be a bit of a culinary desert, but when you have a good look around there are many foodie finds to enjoy. While many of the high streets are dominated by high street chains there are some lovely independently owned food businesses to seek out. These sadly are often hidden down a country lane, not well publicised and sometimes quite hard to find. I hope to make this blog a portal for all things foodie and fabulous in Surrey that I find on my adventures. The only website that specialises in reviews of independently owned restaurants, food shops and food producers in Surrey, ‘Eat Surrey’ is also my portfolio with plenty of examples of my writing, recipes and food photography for prospective clients.
So if you like me want to support independently owned local food businesses in Surrey and surrounding counties this blog is for you. Eating out in Surrey doesn’t have to be a trip to a predictable chain restaurant it can be a unique one off experience!
If you are a small food business and need some help go to my website www.shirleeposner.co.uk for the full range of services I offer and rate card.