John Whaite, British food writer and TV cook, former Great British Bake Off winner, shares his favourite sites.

John Whaite is a British food writer and TV cook. He gained a diploma in patisserie from the Le Cordon Bleu School of Culinary Arts, and has published two cookbooks, John Whaite Bakes and John Whaite Bakes At Home. He also contributes to various food and lifestyle magazines.

In late 2015 John will open his cookery school, John Whaite’s Kitchen, where classes in patisserie, chocolaterie, butchery and cooking will be held, as well as bespoke, private party classes.

Food has always been John's passion. He grew up on a dairy farm where he learned about British produce and the importance of supporting local food producers and artisan crafters. His parents also owned a fish and chip shop, where John started his first job - as potato peeler - at just ten. Even earlier than that, he was always keen to make 'a living' from food, selling bags of pick and mix to his peers at school - without the teachers knowing, of course.

Gaining a first class degree in Law from the University of Manchester after declining a place to study at Oxford University, John decided to hang up the gown and don the apron, a decision spurred on after he won the third series of the BBC’s The Great British Bake Off in 2012.

John will be appearing at the Cake and Bake Show in Harrogate from 19th to 21st June, alongside fellow Great British Bake Off winner, Jo Wheatley and cooking stars, Rosemary Shrager, Gregg Wallace, Eric Lanlard, Phil Vickery, Lisa Faulkner, Aaron Craze, Brendan Lynch and Wendi Peters. John and the baking stars will also be appearing at the Cake and Bake Shows in London, Manchester and Edinburgh in October. For more information and ticket details, visit thecakeandbakeshow.co.uk.

JOHN'S FAVOURITE SITES

Pinterest - I was quite late to the party with Pinterest, but now that I’m using it, I’m absolutely hooked! It’s a fabulous source of inspiration for everything, from cooking and baking to fashion and furniture.

Telegraph Food & Drink - Food. Ok, so I write for The Telegraph, but in all seriousness it’s such a brilliant source of recipes and food journalism. And, it’s one of the few broadsheet newspapers to offer free web content!

Cocktail Kingdom - Even more than drinking an ice cold cocktail, I love bar utensils, especially in gold or copper. This website was one I had to beg a barman for when I saw his copper shaker. I’ve bought so much from here for my new cookery school, and a little for my own flat, of course.

Brindisa - I adore Spanish food. But making it successfully - especially tapas - often requires top notch ingredients. This website sells so much great stuff, and I particularly love the garbanzos (chickpeas).

Houzz - I’m so nosey and obsessed with all things house, so this is a fab way to exorcise my prying demons.

My favourite app... Instagram - I’m obsessed! It’s great for inspiring food photography and recipe ideas, but if anything, it’s the best form of procrastination!

10 June 2015