I’m the first to admit that I’m an unlikely cook. I wasn’t raised clinging to apron strings, or under the guidance of an Italian nonna, or sent to college with an index box of faded family recipe cards. Until recently I would have sworn that I hadn’t eaten pasta until the age of 18, but then I realised that spaghetti hoops on toast probably counted as pasta of a sort. I spent intermittent periods of my late teens/early 20s trying to eat as little as possible, and two plus years being fed by a college canteen whose idea of innovation was to add raisins to salmon-en-croute. I’m sure my palate is terribly indelicate. But, against all odds, or more likely because of them, I love to cook, I love to feed, and I love to eat.
This is the journey I chronicle at Cakesnail. Every meal is a reflection of a relationship: with those I love, with those far from me, with myself, with my beloved city of San Francisco, with the country where I grew up – England, and with our shared environment. This journey changes every day and I never know where it might go next, although I tend to assume there’ll be cake around the corner somewhere or other.
I take my pictures with a Canon Rebel XTi, a 50mm f/1.8 lens, a 100mm f/2.8 macro lens and a tripod. I’ve learned a lot since starting taking pictures for the site and hope I will continue to do so. I was recently gifted a Canon Speedlight 430EX II and a reflector but I haven’t quite played around with them enough yet to use those pics on the site. I also shoot film from time to time, primarily black and white, on a vintage Pentax K1000 but I also haven’t used any of those pictures on the site yet. One day…
My husband, Ollie, and I emigrated to San Francisco in 2007 and now reside in the Mission district, surrounded by ridiculously good restaurants and produce. I’m mama to one little bundle of mischief, Henry Baxter, born Sept 2012. And boy does he keep us on our toes! I’m currently on maternity leave from my day job as a book editor, swapping social science manuscripts and authors for Eric Carle and Maurice Sendak, swings, and mama meet-ups in the park. I obsessively love books – both reading and the material form – and once organized my library by date of publication (until being the only person who could find anything got tiring). I’m a committed yogi, practicing (and now dipping my toes into teaching) bhakti vinyasa which I study with Rusty Wells. I wish I could play a musical instrument, and despite some meagre efforts, I can’t yet snowboard.