As part of a commemorative series of interviews and portraits, two friends, Jessica and Louise, are travelling around Britain to uncover some of the best-loved recipes of The Women’s Institute – and meet the members behind each recipe in their very own kitchen.

The series, run as an independent editorial project with support from the WI, aims to record, preserve and celebrate the unique tales and legacies behind WI cooks and bakers across the federations today. The journey has so far taken the pair from Hackney to Huddersfield, via members in Derbyshire and Dorset; all of whom have brought uniquely colourful stories, recipes and treats to the kitchen table. This blog is a behind-the-scenes peek of their adventures so far, interspersed with musings on everything from cats and new projects, to inspiring reads and recipes for their latest bakes.

The Authors

jess_louise-5815_blogJessica Johnson, Writer
Jessica’s interest in food history and culinary nostalgia began in the vaults of The Women’s Institute, whilst working as journalist for the WI membership magazine, WI Life. The Vintage Cake Spot blog is home to her collection of old-fashioned recipes that inspired her first book, The WI Vintage Teatime (Simon & Schuster, 2012) featuring teatime bakes and cakes sourced and adapted from the WI archives.
Jessica is Features Writer at Coast magazine and a member of The Guild of Food Writers. When not by the sea or taking tea with WI members around the country, she enjoys trips home to Grimsby to visit family over a good plate of fish and chips.

Jessica is represented by Amanda Preston at LBA Books. She’s a member of Borough Belles WI in London.

jess_louise-5829blogLouise Haywood-Schiefer, Photographer
As a freelance photographer, Louise works for a string of national publications including Time Out, The Big Issue and The Fly where commissions include Hollywood actors, current bands and songwriters, celebrity chefs and other people with interesting tales to be told. Examples include, Tracey Emin, Will.I.Am, Fergus Henderson and Terry Pratchett, to name but a few.
Louise also frequently works for the Women’s Institute’s membership magazine, WI Life, which sees her zipping around the country photographing members for cover shoot profiles, documenting quirky fetes, and producing portraits of celebrities to run alongside interviews.

© Copyright WI Kitchen Stories 2013