Emma BareFood (not her real name but wouldn’t it be great if it was?) lives in Norwich with her other half Andrew, a boat builder. Emma runs a gluten-and dairy-free food company BareFoodCo with her friend and partner-in-crime Ali and you can find her producing lots of tasty treats in Make It Shabby’s recipe section. With no end to her talents, you might even spot her creating a craft or two as well!
Read more about Emma in our quick interview:
Baking played a big part in my childhood. I remember baking bread and cakes at school and loving it, although my favourite memory is making meringues, designing packaging and posting them to ourselves! My mum always made amazing cakes decorated with sugar icing for birthdays and Christmas, and cake was pretty much one of the major food groups for our family.
Do you have any crafting or cooking disaster stories that you can laugh about now but didn’t feel very funny at the time?
I once had to make loads of maple & bacon cupcakes for an event, but I was using a new oven and the poor cupcakes were destroyed! BareFood steers clear of delicate cupcakes – we like to make loaves, traybakes and muffins.
What other skills do you have? Is there anything you’d like to try but haven’t done yet?
I’ve taught myself to knit, crochet and sew over the past couple of years but I’m really keen to try needlefelting. I was gifted a little owl at Christmas and I love him!
How much of a part does art and creativity play in your life?
Creativity plays a huge part in my life. I love writing and drawing as well as crafting, so if I have a spare moment I either have a needle in my hand or a pen! I go to craft group every month, too, which gives me chance to talk yarn and eat other people’s cake for a change.
Please can you tell us a little about the Barefood Co? Where did the idea come from? How does it work?
Ali and I travelled for a few months in 2009 and the whole time we were stuffing our faces and talking about how we needed to open a cafe. Fast-forward a few years and here we are with our catering business! We’re both intolerant; me to gluten and Ali to dairy, and we’ve always found going to farmers’ markets and food fairs is a window-shopping experience. It was pretty soul destroying to see so much beautiful local produce we couldn’t eat, so we decided to do something about it.
What advice would you give to someone else who are is starting out their new business?
Start small. Test the water. We work alongside other roles in order to bring in a regular income which keeps the bank happy. Look into courses, too. We were lucky in that we’ve had free courses from local start-up firms and food law companies which have been a huge help.
Finally, what are your hopes for the future of your work and Barefood Co?
We’d love to keep expanding our range and infiltrate the market as much as possible, although many of our customers and dying for us to open a gluten-free cafe – we’ll see! It would be nice, though…