In the latest instalment of her exclusive #NadiyaBakes blog, Nadiya shares what it’s like behind the scenes of creating her new cookbook, Nadiya’s Kitchen – and what it’s like when you bring your kids to work…
So since winning the Bake Off, I am going to use the biggest cliché in the world: it has been a rollercoaster. I have been busy and surviving on caffeine, chocolate and cuddles. I have spent weeks in the kitchen writing and collating some of my favourite recipes for my book, Nadiya’s Kitchen. It has been weeks of trying to achieve perfection. Where I am all about getting things perfect, it’s not always that easy when you have a to-do list the length of Piers Morgan’s tongue! I have worked hard to achieve the best I can and I’ve had so much fun spending weeks recreating my recipes to shoot for the book, with a troop of people behind the scenes who work so hard and do my recipes justice.
“Never have I known such tiny tweaks being made to recipes, but these tweezers and crumb removal expeditions make all the difference to the final photos!”
So much hard work goes into making the book perfect and I have a newfound respect for the work. From the props, the food, the photography, the look, the light, the cutlery, the smiles, the recipes, it’s all so much to think about. The detail astounds me.
“We had the added extra of working out what colour scarf would be perfect for each occasion, even lipstick!”
One of the days of the shoot, I was able to take the kids and my husband with me. This had to be one of my favourite days. They ate too much food, asked far too many questions and made me giggle so hard at their shenanigans. For me, my book is not only about my food, it’s my children, husband and my family. The recipes are not much without them. They are who I cook for and it was an honour to have them be part of what has been one of my proudest ventures to date.
“They ate too much food, asked far too many questions and made me giggle so hard at their shenanigans”
I also did a photo shoot for my children’s book, Bake Me A Story, that meant taking the kids again for the shoot. They had no qualms about another day in front of the camera! Some may question how much these kids love being in front of a camera. This time, they were armed with imagination, props and lots of giggles. This is where I got a chance to use those facial expressions that I have been so well endowed with. All the faces I tell my kids not to do… well, we did all of them, and had a blast doing it too!
“They had no qualms about another day in front of the camera!”
So yeah, in and amongst the hectic schedule, I have had very little sleep, way too much caffeine but so many laughs. A whole new world has opened up to me that I never knew existed. It tests my resilience in every way, but I still have the time to bake, the one thing that gives my kids comfort. Mummy is busy but mummy still has time to bake for us. So much so, they can’t sleep till they have just one more slice. So a midnight feast it is…