Jayne’s career began in art & urban regeneration, where she worked with development teams to transform neighbourhoods in some of the most difficult housing estates in London and Birmingham. The shift into food projects started in response to the growing health issues that many of the communities she worked with faced and what she saw as a de-skilled food culture with its over reliance on supermarkets, fast and cheap food, creating the problems for people’s health.
She completed an MSc in Food Policy in 2009 and has specialised in city wide strategies to enable what she terms, The Conscious Consumer; creating opportunities for urban dwellers to make more sustainable, ethical and healthy food choices. In 2011, established her own demonstration garden in a former industrial gas station in Digbeth, called Edible Eastside. Here she began teaching food growing, cookery and urban foraging and created a research garden in sustainable food, in partnership with landscape architecture and urban planning departments. Kitchen School is the second stage of her ambition to create new opportunities to create more engaging food experiences and to help put Birmingham on the food map.
- Signature Dish: Chilli Crab Linguine
- Favourite Food: Middle Eastern Food (Anything by Yotam Ottelenghi)
- Comfort Food: Fish Fingers, Mushy Peas & Parsley Sauce
- Guilty Food: Chinese Take Away BBQ Spare Ribs (sweet, sour, salty, sticky with an MSG rush)
- Favourite Birmingham Restaurant: All of the ones I’ve selected for Kitchen Insights
Chris Hughes is our resident chef with fingers in many proverbial pies. He trained at the Birmingham College of Food (now UCB) and after gaining experience in the City’s fine dining sector, he moved to London to pursue his ambitions of Culinary expertise. Having cut his teeth in a Michelin star environment whilst working alongside some of the capital’s finest chefs, Chris returned to Brum to take on his first head chef position in Moseley and then Tanworth in Arden.
He became director of Fresh Catering and events, originally based in Digbeth and expanded into a further two units in the Birmingham area. Chris continues to offer a bespoke catering service and also works full time at The Academy at Kidderminster teaching Hospitality and Culinary arts to 16-19 year olds.
His first passion is education and embedding life skills with an emphasis on making cooking fun and achievable for all.
- Signature Dish: Middle Eastern mezze
- Favourite Food: Salt and pepper squid
- Comfort food: Smoked haddock and leek risotto with soft poached egg
- Guilty Food: Ben and Jerry’s of any description
- Favourite Birmingham Restaurant: Turners of Harborne
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