My name is Helen Graves. I’m a freelance recipe developer, food and travel writer and editor. I’ve written for publications including The Guardian, The Times, The Evening Standard, Sainsbury’s Magazine and others; you can see some recent examples of my work on this page.
I’m also the food and drink editor for Londonist, which is a website about London, and everything that happens in it. There, I write and commission articles on London restaurants, trends, bars, pubs, shops, events… you get the idea.
In 2013, I won the Fresh Faces in Food Writing Award at the Young British Foodie Awards, which was very nice (even if I did nearly trip over the stage and headbutt Yotam Ottolenghi while accepting it). I was also shortlisted for online food and drink writer of the year at the Fortnum & Mason Food and Drink Awards 2016.
I started this blog 9 years ago, and in the beginning it had a strong focus on Peckham, which was then a very (cough) up and coming area. I was inspired to cook with the ingredients I found in local shops and seduced by the energy of the community (sounds cheesy but it’s true). I’m still in love with the place, but I now have a wider focus on the south east of London and the city as a whole. I also love to travel.
I am addicted to sandwiches, and few things make me happier than a really good example, such as the salt beef on challah from Delancey & Co. That link points to another blog I write (albeit sporadically), called The London Review of Sandwiches. I have also written a book about the best sandwiches from around the world, called 101 Sandwiches, which is available from Amazon, published by Dog n Bone books.
I used to work in academia and I’m still writing up my PhD in the field of psychological medicine, so my days are filled with a stimulating mix of food writing and heavy scientific terminology. Other things that I love are cats (not for eating), crabs (my favourite food) and kebabs (proper ones, not ‘elephant legs’). I have two furry housemates called Chaz Michael Michaels and Delia Smith.
Some nice things people have said about Food Stories and 101 Sandwiches
“One of the most brilliant blogs is written by Helen Graves: you want to eat everything on her site” – The Times on Food Stories
“Unique narrative and eloquent prose” – The Metro on Food Stories
“A brilliant mix of recipes from a lady who is trying to show that there is more to food and drink heritage in Peckham than just its Spring Water…this site has extremely well-crafted food and travel writing” – The Independent on Food Stories (100 Best Food Websites)
“A passionate and unpretentious love of food shines through Helen’s writing – and her barbecue recipes are to die for” – Woman and Home Magazine’s 100 Best Blogs
“Blogger Helen Graves has South London covered, whether she’s making the ultimate pork sandwich (cooked to tender perfection in a sous-vide machine) in the comfort of her kitchen or dining out in under-the-radar pop-ups, local legends or even – gasp – north of the river” – Square Meal : Food Bloggers to Follow
“You might think that you don’t need a book of sandwich recipes but I’ll bet you have never even considered half of the ideas in this book.” – Olive on 101 Sandwiches
“Great fun and almost stocking filler-sized, this is a celebration of sandwiches in all their forms by a blogger with extremely high standards. Graves has gathered together a brilliantly diverse century of sandwiches and is bold enough to suggest a bit of project cooking if it will benefit the finished dish. Like breakfast, sandwiches are a matter of personal taste, and the book is – as it should be – filled with Graves’s own well-researched preferences” – The Metro on 101 Sandwiches
“The recipes in 101 Sandwiches are less about dull lunchbox snacks and more about seriously flavoursome and hearty meals that are just as suited to a post-hangover brunch as they are for an inspired dinner.” — Love Food Love Drink on 101 Sandwiches
“’Perkily enjoyable’ –Mail Online on 101 Sandwiches
“Now that’s what I call a sandwich!” –The Independent
Working with me
I am interested in discussing any cooking or writing opportunities, so please e-mail me email@example.com
My agent is Jennifer Christie at Graham Maw Christie.