By Iska Lupton and Anastasia Miari
A cookbook of time-perfected recipes and stories from wise and witty grandmothers across the globe
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Grand Dishes is not a book about being old, it’s a book about what it’s like to have lived. It’s a cookbook that preserves; an interaction between generations, a sharing of stories most powerfully told through the recipes that have seasoned these grandmothers’ lives.
We are on a mission to capture cooking techniques, recipes and anecdotes from inspiring grandmothers. Grand Dishes is inspired by our own grandmothers; Anastasia’s is Greek and Iska’s is German. Both are equally strong and stoic. Their love is shared through the food they serve. We believe that there’s no food quite like the time-perfected dish of a grandmother.
What you’ll get:
A coffee table-worthy cookbook rich with stories, elegant portraiture and diverse recipes from 30 women. Each recipe is easily recreated at home and there’s room for your own grandmothers’ dish and story at the back of the book.
Grand Dishes dedicates four pages to each grandmother: a portrait, her story, the recipe and an image of the dish. This is not just a compendium of dishes, it’s a selection of stories and techniques that are completely unique to a region, a grandmother and her family.
A selection of who you’ll meet...
Anastasia - A Greek corfiot Granny who never learned to read or write but has been cooking on an open flame, planting by the moon’s cycle and filleting fish since she was 11 years old.
Cooking up flame-charred seabass, skordalia dip and Greek salad
Margit - A German violinist forced to flee her hometown aged 9 during the Nazi occupation. After too much spaghetti Bolognese and a German lover at music college she finally reconnected with the schnitzel of her heritage.
Cooking up Schnitzel and ‘granny’ carrots
Judit - Judit, born into extremely humble beginnings, put to work from the age of 8, a single mother at 19...through sheer determination and hard work she worked her way up to becoming the Hungarian President's secretary during the Communist regime. In addition to being a career woman and an excellent cook, she was one of the first women to gain a pilot's license.
Chainsaw Jenny - A British grandmother built of sterner stuff. She wields a chainsaw in between baking seriously delectable desserts. Masterchef Judge and food critic William Sitwell recommended her: trust him on this one.
Cooking up a traditional Queen of Puddings
Nicole Cointreau - Married to the heir of the Cointreau alcohol empire, beautiful Nicole divulges the key to her happy marriage with the husband she met aged just 17.
Cooking up a Cointreau orange tart, of course
Tigger - A Hackney gran with 16 grandkids who spent many years in Africa with her doctor husband. Despite “only being a doctor’s wife”, Tigger manned the land rover and delivered Iodine capsules to over 400,000 people suffering from goitres during her time in Africa.
Cooking up African peanut chicken curry
Clara Maria Gonzalez de Amezua - The gran dame of Spanish gastronomy, friends with Julia Childs and Elizabeth David, who can be credited for taking Spanish cuisine to the States, cooking up a traditional Spanish escabeche.
Photography: Ella Sullivan, Issy Croker
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My Granny Cooks Better Than Yours
GRAND DISHES is a collaboration between friends Anastasia and Iska.
Anastasia is a freelance writer whose work spans fashion magazine editorial and copy for fashion brands to travel features for a range of publications from The Telegraph to EasyJet Traveller magazine. Iska works as a creative producer, creating multi-sensory food experiences across the globe and styling food for various brands and publications.
We met as Drama and English students when dinner meant peas and pesto, and have cooked and collaborated together ever since. Our dishes have become slightly more ambitious since then, but our passion for connecting people and sharing stories is ever strong.
- 24th December 2019 Happy Christmas from Grand Dishes
What a year it has been! With a final burst of energy and pledges earlier this year, we were finally funded.
THANK YOU for your support and all the granny love, we could not be doing this without you. Special thanks also goes out to the amazing list of foodies that have given us their grandmas’ recipes for the book, including Anna Jones, Maria Elia, Tomos Parry and John Chantarasak and to…26th September 2019 THANK YOU ALL FOR FUNDING GRAND DISHES
GOOD MORNING ONE AND ALL!
What a fine day it is to announce that we have FINALLY hit 100% in our granny cookbook crowdfund and will have these grannies on the bookshelves (officially!) and through your letter boxes as soon as we possibly can.
We have a couple of granny missions to head out on before the book is complete but as you have probably gathered from our collection of granny life…12th September 2019 TRAVEL MEDIA AWARDS FINALISTS!
Hi lovely Grand Dishes supporters - sorry we've been quiet a while!
Lots of exciting developments have been happening our end. This summer we visited grandmothers in Cuba - women who lived through Che and Fidel's REVOLUCION. Juana Maria's interview and recipe is actually live on the website now, should you want to read about what it's like to live on rations and cook for a family in modern…18th July 2019 Grand Dishes on BBC Radio 4 Food Programme
Hello lovely supporters!
We're very excited to announce that this Sunday, 21 July 2019, we will be featured on the Radio 4 Food Programme. Tune in at 12:30pm this Sunday or again at 3:30pm Monday to catch our cooking session with Colombian granny Gloria. The Food Programme came to cook with us and experience what we do on our granny missions. Now you can share in a little of the kitchen action…3rd June 2019 Lessons in love from Colombian Abuela Gloria
Sorry we've been quiet a while - we've been busy travelling to far off lands on our granny mission. Just in two months we've covered Russia, Israel and Cuba, cooking with grandmothers and devouring their lessons on love and life.
We do have an update though! Granny Gloria from Colombia and her delicious, soul-warming ajiaco (chicken soup packed with flavour) is now live on…13th February 2019 Love Lessons from Grannies for Valentine's Day
Happy Valentine's Day from us and all our lovely grandmothers. Here's a few of our favourite love lessons from grandmothers of the world. Read in full in the Grand Dishes book, now funding on Unbounders.
Lally, 91, Exeter
I never thought about marriage and I was always ready to say no but marrying Michael was the right decision when it happened in 1954. We were in some pub in Leicester when…22nd December 2018 MERRY CHRISTMAS FROM GRAND DISHES!
THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR BEING PART OF THE GRAND DISHES BOOK PROJECT THIS YEAR!
What a year it's been. We won a Guild of Food Writers award, had an article in Observer Food magazine and were on BBC Radio's Woman's Hour !
We would love to ask for your help this Christmas by sharing our project and asking your friends to pre-order their copy of the book! We are crowdfunding…20th August 2018 Grand Dishes in The Observer Food Monthly (and a TINY favour)
Thank you so, so much to those of you who have JUST pledged after reading our feature in the Observer Food Monthly magazine on 19 August. We are oh-so very pleased with the feature and for the amazing feedback we have had off the back of it. To those who haven't read it - here it is!
We are on a MAJOR funding push and wanted to ask a little favour...
Please could each of you…26th July 2018 Abuela Clara Maria - Recipe and Story Live on our Website
We'd love to keep you up to date with the various grandmothers we're cooking with - so we're adding excerpts of our book to our (award-winning!) website.
Last month we had the pleasure of cooking with Clara Maria, the gran-dame of Spanish gastronomy (friends with both Elizabeth David and Julia Childs), who welcomed us into her home and kitchen.
Here she is. We hope you enjoy…2nd July 2018 Sharing is Caring - only 600 more to go.
We would really like to engage you in a mini mission for us!
We need just 600 more people to each buy a book to hit our target. We were hoping that you might help us on our granny mission, and personally email X 5 people each - informing them of what we're doing and pasting the link to our crowdfunding page in the email.
We're finding our pledges are coming through direct emails…23rd June 2018 Award Winning Writers!
Hello granny supporters,
We're just about coming down off our win this week - we have just been announced as winners of the Guild of Food Writers Award for Best Blog, joining big names in the foodie world like Meera Sodha, Anna Jones and Dan Saladino to win this year.
Comments from the judges:
"A fantastically original idea, beautifully illustrated by pictures of people and food from all…24th May 2018 Keep in touch with us?
Hi lovely Grand Dishes supporters! We'd love to keep in touch with you and in light of the new GDPR rules and regulations on email send-outs, we're asking that you please sign up to hear more on our granny antics.
We are starting a monthly mail-out with recipes, news and anecdotes from the grandmothers we cook with. We'd love to be able to keep in touch and send you these updates.
Please do …21st May 2018 GRAND DISHES HAS BEEN SHORTLISTED FOR A GUILD OF FOOD WRITERS AWARD
What are they so happy about?
Grand Dishes has been shortlisted for an award in the prestigious Guild of Food Writers Awards 2018, to be announced on June 18 at Opera Holland Park in London.
We've been shortlisted alongside huge foodie names we've long-admired like Meera Sodha, Felicity Cloake, Diana Henry, Nuno Mendes and Anna Jones - a huge achievement in itself!
Obviously, we have…9th May 2018 THE GREAT GRAND DISHES EXHIBITION
Hello Grand Dishes supporters!
We're thrilled to announce that tomorrow is the launch date of the Grand Dishes exhibition as part of Leeds Indie Food Festival. If you're in and around Yorkshire in the next month, we hope you can come along and see our handy work.
Running 10 May - 10 June 2018
The Gallery at Munro House
Grand Dishes has this month teamed up with Leeds Indie Food…30th March 2018 Grand Dishes Website LIVE
Grand Dishes supporters!
We have launched our website so that you can now see beautiful photography of our grandmothers and their stories as we continue to make Grand Dishes.
This summer we're excited to be cooking with two grandmothers in Spain (one of which is a TV chef out there!) another in Croatia, a Georgian grandmother and an Eritrean granny. We really want to be able to share…19th February 2018 Grand Dishes International Women's Day Dinner
Grand Dishes supporters! We would love to invite you to a great, grand feast...
We have been busy cooking up an event for International Women's Day on 8 March, celebrating the power of women and storytelling through food. Teaming up with Feisty Feast, we'll be gathering wonderful women around an elegant banquet table for a night of storytelling, live poetry, life drawing and of course, a Grand…7th November 2017 Grand Dishes on Nowness
It's true, we have been a little off the radar recently, but for good reason. We've been busy pulling together a short film for Grand Dishes for the leading video screening platform, Nowness.
This summer, we set out to shoot Yiayia - my Greek grandmother and the inspiration behind Grand Dishes - going about her daily routine. So much of her day is focused on food, from setting off for…
These people are helping to fund Grand Dishes.
Paloma Tello Serrano
Julie Miracle Vrana