If you’re a Barnet-based brownie lover, then we have a treat for you. Introducing Ed, the Finchley baker specialising in brownies. We met Ed in his beautiful home kitchen to try his baking. His food was such a hit that one of our lucky tasters told us his brownies were the best she’d ever had.
We wanted to find out how Ed found his passion for food.
What’s on the menu today?
“This is a selection of my favourite brownies: Raspberry; salted caramel; white chocolate chip, and milk chocolate chip.”
“Brownies were one of the first things I cooked, and the reaction I got from people was great, I just thought “Wow I can actually bake”. I always got requests to bring them into work, or from friends and family, so I carried on making them”
What’s your heritage?
“I’m Italian, but I was born here. My parents were Italian immigrants, so I’ve always been around food, and we had lots of family meals. I grew up with a variety of food, mainly Italian, but when you love food you just want to explore more. I never thought the first thing I’d make would be brownies, but people loved them so I just carried on with it”
‘Italians are known for family cooking and always having big groups of people around, aren’t they?’
“They are. I remember watching people cook and feeling jealous — I just wished I could get involved. I had friends who’s older brothers would cook for them when their parents went away. I would watch them cook, frying things, and wished I could get involved. When I got a bit older, I loved doing it. I’m the host more often than going to other places, I love having people round, having food and socialising with friends and family”
What’s your favourite dish to cook?
“It has to be pizza. I make it every Saturday. I’ve been doing it for about 20 years and I’m still tweaking the recipe when I make it.”
What advice do you have for someone who’d like to start cooking?
“I’d say you have to have a passion for food. You have to make sure your food tastes great, get opinions and feedback, always be learning and adapt your recipes. Don’t be afraid to try new things. Then you have to work on making it look good, but for me it’s flavour first, aesthetics afterwards. Just give it a go. Cooking doesn’t have to be hard, follow a recipe for good results. You need to have patience, but it’s not as difficult as you think. Dive in and do it.”
What do you love most about cooking for others?
“It’s got to be look of satisfaction on their faces, the feeling of making others happy with food. It’s hard to hear criticism, but feedback can help you grow and tweak your recipes and improve. I like to hear what people think of my food.”
What’s your earliest memory of food?
“My earliest memory of cooking is when my mum had a recipe book, I must have been about 10 or 11 and I decided I wanted to be a chef. I remember telling my family and my uncle saying “People are always gonna need food, it’s a good profession to go into”. Then, I lost this passion when I did work experience in a hotel kitchen. It was brutal and really put me off, so I didn’t think about it for years. Then in my early 20s I picked it up again. The first thing I made was white and milk chocolate chip brownies. I followed a recipe and everyone loved them. I rediscovered my passion and my early 20s was when things really kicked off for me.”
What does homecooked mean to you?
“Homecooked food means that warm feeling of something wholesome”
If you’d like to try Ed’s brownies, you can browse and pre-order his range of delicious food on our site.
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