Rachel de Thample, food writer, cook and head of food for the organic food company, Abel & Cole, shares her favourite sites.

Rachel de Thample is one of the UK’s most recognised food writers and cooks. A trained journalist with enviable stints in the kitchens of Heston Blumenthal, Marco Pierre White and Peter Gordon, her resume includes time at Waitrose Food Illustrated, co-authoring two Borough Market cookbooks, two acclaimed books of her own (Less Meat, More Veg and Five: 150 effortless ways to eat 5+ fruit and veg a day and her current role as head of food for the organic food company Abel & Cole.

Outside the kitchen, she likes to get her hands dirty and has helped set up an award-winning Edible Garden in Crystal Palace and Patchwork Farm (an urban food-growing collective).


Ted Talks - This is the perfect place to go if you’re in need of a little inspiration. I stumbled on New York Times food writer, Mark Bittman’s talk What's wrong with what we eat when I was writing my first book. Carolyn Steel’s talk How food shapes our cities was a huge catalyst for some of the urban food projects I’ve been involved with.

People Tree - I’m committed to ethical fashion. Most of my clothes come from vintage or charity shops, but if I buy new, I opt for organic cotton. People Tree is one of my favourite brands. I love the producer stories on their website.

It’s really hard to find organic clothes in shops. Online, there’s endless variety. Some of my other favourite sites are: Frugi for children’s clothes and Ray Stitch for fabric for home projects: table linens, throw cushions, and fabrics for propping Abel & Cole food shoots.

Civil Eats - I love keeping up with food politics and deeply miss the fleeting existence of the magazine the Modern Farmer. Civil Eats fills the void. I subscribe to its newsletter so if I find myself with a free moment, I indulge.

Abel & Cole - Of course I love Abel & Cole (otherwise, I wouldn’t work there). They are the original farm to fork pioneers and have been delivering best organic produce to homes for more than twenty-seven years. I’ve been working with them for eight years now. Over that time, we’ve built an inspiring bank of recipes and 'how to' videos on the site. It’s also a one-stop shop for healthy eating made simple. The site is also full of interesting fruits and veggies that are hard to find elsewhere. My seasonal favourite: kumquats. Beautiful roasted with gammon, spices and honey.

Dirty Girl Kitchen - Rebecca Sullivan and I are great friends. I’m forever blown away by her passion and energy. She moved from London back to her Australian homeland a few years ago and has taken the large nation by storm with her campaign to preserve ‘granny skills’. What this girl doesn’t know about jamming, pickling, smoking and preserving isn’t worth knowing. While the website is brilliant, I’d highly recommend subscribing to her Facebook page to be totally swept into her wonderful world of old fashioned, edible DIY.

Otter Farm - I love Mark’s writing and all he grows and sells. This is my first stop for plant and seed shopping. I set up a Tipsy Garden in my local pub which is now full of apple trees (for cider-making) and grape vines (for wine) from Otter Farm. I also have an almond tree from Otter Farm, planted in a friend’s garden as I don’t have a growing space outside my flat.

And my favourite app has to be... Instagram - Favourite follow: Jamie Oliver. I love seeing what he gets up to.

November 2015