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Khoollect Food Editor, Frankie Unsworth

Meet Frankie Unsworth – Khoollect’s food editor, stylist and recipe developer. She’s a diminutive wee thing, but her enthusiasm for all things food is huge! Frankie always exudes enthusiasm and creativity, and she’s an exciting bundle of energy to be around.

A Day in the Life of Frankie

Where do you call home?

East London.

How did you get into your line of work?

I guess things started fresh out of university when I got an internship with a food magazine and was then offered a full-time job as a staff writer. After a year working in the Bath office, I moved to Paris (for love) where I carried on doing my job for another two years.

I always enjoyed the food shoot process and was particularly passionate about French patisserie. This spurred me to enrol at Le Cordon Bleu cookery school where I met Rachel (Khoo) who was working in my favourite cookbook shop at the time. Rachel and I teamed up and worked together on a few pop-ups  in various locations around the world. Since then I’ve lived and worked in various countries, but returned to London four years ago where I’ve been involved in all sorts of random food roles, from food styling and cookery course planning, to manning a night market stand for Nuno Mendes, and working on television shows such as ‘The Little Paris Kitchen’.

BTS Frankie

Tell us about a day in the life of Frankie Unsworth?

No day is ever quite the same, especially when I’m right in the middle of a shoot. On a shoot day I’m up very early and usually pretty stressed that I’ll forget some essential ingredient that has taken me all around London to source. I finish packing up the car and head to a studio and start cooking away. We usually shoot between 8-12 recipes per day so it can be quite full on.

What do you love most about your job?

Working with wonderfully creative people is always inspiring. Plus, getting to spend most of the day in the kitchen, and working with beautiful props that I can only ever dream of owning. I also love that shopping for food actually counts as work.

What’s your biggest achievement to date?

Probably finding a job that I really love, that’s creative, always varied and also pays the bills.

What do you think has been the key to your success in your line of work?

It’s really important not to get stressed and overwhelmed on shoots, and I think I manage to hide when I am feeling stressed and just smile through the pressure.

Is collaboration important in your line of work?

Some of my work is quite solitary when I’m working and testing recipes at home, so sometimes I’m gagging to work with people and bounce ideas off them. When it comes to shooting in a studio, I love being surrounded by other creatives and seeing different perspectives.

Three top tips for making and presenting beautiful food at home?

1. It sounds obvious, but always think about the final look of the plate before you start serving it up.

2. Think about garnishes, but also make sure they add something to the dish, be it freshness, acidity or texture.

3. Find a good green grocer who sells super fresh and seasonal produce, and you’re halfway there.

Any funny mishaps on any of your jobs?

Not sure I am ready to find any of them funny yet!

Best Kept Secrets

Frankie Glassware Khoollection

I khoollect a few …

Plates, bowls, coffee cups, spoons and linens. If it goes in the kitchen, I probably collect it. Oh, and stationery and books.

What’s your favourite item in your khoollection?

I have two coffee cups with frolicking animal caricatures based on a scroll that’s in a Kyoto museum. I got them when Rachel and I visited in 2014 and I use them every day.

A life lesson that you’d tell your younger self?

Stop worrying because it achieves nothing! Actually I still tell myself this daily.

What’s your secret ingredient or top tip in the kitchen?

I really love the depth of flavour that miso gives to a dish, which is why I sneak it into my Osso Bucco {link to the recipe}.

Favourite corner of the Internet?

I’m a Pinterest addict. I thought my addiction would subside once I did up my kitchen, but now I am focusing on the rustic cabin I might own one day.

Urban Favourites

Best place to buy fresh produce?

Newington Greengrocers is probably my favourite at the moment. They have an unbelievable range of produce, both local and exotic.

Top three spots to hang out in London?

I spend a lot of time in Victoria Park, whether I’m jogging, walking the dog or having breakfast at the Pavilion. Maltby Street for daytime drinking and perusing Lassco, an inspiring antiques haven. And Chatsworth Road for checking out all the brilliant independent shops.

Isla Unsworth

Best way to spend a Sunday morning?

Easy. A walk with the dog through the park and down the canal to Columbia Road. Then grab an armful of flowers and perch up at the bar at Brawn with a carafe of wine.

Your favourite place for coffee?

I spend a lot of time at the Peanut Vendor on Gunmaker’s Lane. Excellent coffee surrounded by cool furniture and plants.

Favourite places to eat?

40 Maltby Street, Raw Duck and Taberna Do Mercado

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Read Frankie’s blog The London Pantry, or try out one of her many recipes:

Meet the rest of the Khoollect team

Editor-in-Chief, Rachel Khoo

Creative Editor, Lara Messer

Deputy Editor, Sonya Gellert

Partnerships and Marketing Manager, Hannah Adams