Liz McClarnon talks food
Meet food blogger Liz McClarnon. Her mother a catering college grad and her father something of a wine connoisseur, she was brought up on quality food and drink but shunned the opportunity to learn their skills. She entered Celebrity Masterchef 2008 with no cooking experience and went on to win the competition; these days you can't keep her away from the kitchen.
Hot from preparing a feast of bacon butties for friends and colleagues, Liz talks exclusively to iVillage on her foodie childhood, new yearand why Dawn French is getting an early cab home from her dinner party...
What made you decide to enter Celebrity Masterchef given that you had no cooking experience?
Liz McClarnon: I said to my mum 'Oh guess what, they’ve asked me to do masterchef, no way am I doing that because I can’t cook!' and she went 'Oh please do it, I love that show!' So she’s the reason I did it.
Do you think the experience has changed your attitude to food?
Liz McClarnon: I've always loved food. But it’s made me more open to trying things, I never used to like patés, onions, raw tomatoes, but I eat them all now because you have to taste everything when you cook.
Where do you hope your cooking skills will take you?
Liz McClarnon: My dream is for my mum, brother and me to one day open a gastro pub, everyone calls us the three musketeers when we're in the kitchen together. It would be great to set something up off the back of that.
What kind of food were you brought up on?
Liz McClarnon: Whatever my mum and dad wer eating, mashed up. When my brother was little he went to a friend's house for tea and when he came back Mum said 'Did you like your dinner?' And he said 'Ooh, yeah, it was really nice. Guess what we had!... Sausage and chips!' We never ate that kind of stuff so it seemed like a real treat, something special.
What's your favourite cuisine?
Liz McClarnon: I love how clean Japanese food is, complimented by rich things like Teriyaki sauces - the contrast of clean and naughty is something I really appreciate. I'm also a big fan of French food.