James: Blueberry Foods

'I’ve loved every minute at Blueberry Foods.'

Blueberry foods development chef, James, had his own epiphany while watching an episode of Jamie Oliver’s ‘Naked Chef.’ As he looked down at his burnt beans on toast served up by a family member (to remain nameless) and then up at Jamie’s Sea Bass and Pancetta, he realised he had to do something.

So he hot-footed it off to Loughborough University to learn how to plate good food for himself, which quickly took him on a path to professionally dropping delicious puddings on dinner tables throughout the UK.

It was while working at the prestigious Priest House Hotel in Derbyshire that James realised his true passion for food: “I was keen on the development of new dishes and not just the buzz of service,” he says. “I have now been at Blueberry Foods for nearly three years and have loved every minute.

“The product I’m most proud of is a sunken salted caramel cheesecake I developed for a top end retail chain. We were first to market with this concept, having seen products to inspire us in some of London’s best patisseries.”

But James doesn’t just eye the dessert menu when he’s out eating and relaxing, telling us of the best restaurant he has been to, on the harbour side in Essaouria in Morocco: “It was a small, open air place with cheap plastic tables and chairs. They fried the freshly arrived catch of the day and served it with fries, salad and sliced baguette; simple but amazing!”

Surely there’s still a time and place for beans on toast though…

James: Blueberry Foods