Episode 44 : Rav | Countertalk


 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 www.countertalk.co.uk

You can find us on Instagram @whatscookingpodcast, on Twitter @whatscookingpod. Get in touch via thewhatscookingpodcast@gmail.com

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Episode 29: Abi | Le Choux

Launching a unique artisanal product into markets, Fortnums and Selfridges and the realities of working in a fast-paced, patisserie kitchen

Le Choux brings classical French patisserie to London with their unique offering of choux buns filled with a multitude of different flavours and topped with beautiful decorations. 

We spoke to Abi about how Le Choux came to life as she retells her tales of working around the clock to bring a super fresh product to market. We talk about why sourcing local ingredients is so important to Abi and discover what exactly makes a choux pastry. It’s fascinating to hear about Abi’s experiences with classical patisserie training in Paris and what it’s really like working in kitchens in London and Paris. Through these experiences, Abi has honed her craft and is keen to give back by providing internships for students in London. 

Find Abi @lechouxlondon on Instagram or lechouxlondon.com 

We are @whatscookingpod on Twitter and @whatscookingpodcast on Instagram

Episode 28: Andrew | Vanilla Black

Establishing a restaurant with no prior experience, pioneering a new approach to vegetarian cooking and staying true to core values with Andrew of Vanilla Black.

For this episode, we sat down with Andrew of pioneering vegetarian restaurant Vanilla Black. We discussed how Andrew and his wife, Donna, built the restaurant from scratch with no prior experience, first in York and later moving the business to London. We talked about the reasons behind this move and the differences in the two markets. We also heard about their unique approach to vegetarian cooking – unashamedly refusing to serve the usual risottos and ‘veggie' curry – and how they develop their menu ideas within the collaborative working environment they have created. Andrew’s open and honest account of what is involved in running a restaurant gave us a true look behind the scenes of this exciting side of the food industry. 

Find Vanilla Black @vanilla_black_uk on Instagram or visit their website at www.vanillablack.co.uk

Find us @whatscookingpodcast on Instagram and @whatscookingpod on Twitter. Drop us an email on thewhatscookingpodcast@gmail.com.

Episode 27: Will | Minor Figures

Making speciality coffee more accessible, bringing a new product to market and learning along the way with Will, one of the co-founders of Minor Figures.

We chatted to Will, one of three co-founders of coffee company Minor Figures. Selling cold brew coffee in cans, oat milk and a chai mix, Minor Figures' mission is to break down the wall of what people think of as speciality coffee…making it less exclusive through understanding and availability. We discussed scaling up production when there is no manual – creating a product on a large scale in a different way to what’s been done before. We also talked about branding and their approach to marketing which focuses on allowing the product to speak for itself and be just about delicious coffee. We were inspired by their total belief in the business and their product development and hope you find the episode informative and interesting. 

Find Minor Figures @minorfigures on Instagram or visit their website at www.minorfigures.com

Find us @whatscookingpodcast on Instagram and @whatscookingpod on Twitter. Drop us an email on thewhatscookingpodcast@gmail.com.