‘I’ve got a place in the 2013 London Marathon’, shouted my friend, an intensive care nurse and my running mate. ‘All I have to do is raise at least £2000 for Children with Cancer UK. How am I going to do that?!’ And so The Corner Plot was born.
I am a medical researcher (formerly a marine biologist) and a keen amateur cook, with an ever-expanding library of cookbooks. I had won a few local competitions, so it was time for a new challenge. I had been contemplating starting a ‘supperclub’ for some time. When I mentioned it to Jon, a friend and an excellent cook, he immediately responded, ‘I’m in’.
We hosted our first charity dinner, for 24 enthusiastic guests, in March 2013 in our location house. The kitchen, an integral part of our living area, is designed to host cooking events and has featured in national and international magazines, web sites and adverts. It was an ambitious affair: cep bavarois with roast chicken jelly, onion tart and thyme foam (managing to spray the utility room in a fine layer in the process!), spiced fish soup with scallops, asparagus with quail eggs and pink grapefruit hollandaise, gin&tonic sorbet with candied lime in ice glasses, duck ragout, gratin dauphinoise, macarons, pistachio marshmallows… The list was endless. We learnt a great deal from the event, both the front-of-house team and the cooks, and developed a deeper respect for professional chefs.
We continue to host charitable supperclub events, supporting my running mate in her insatiable desire to run marathons, schools in India where my son volunteered, and Whisper, a Ugandan children’s hospital and orphanage set up by our friends.
This year, we held a dinner for 28 guests in support of #CookForSyria. In July, we entertained over 80 guests at an Afternoon Tea Party for #IntoUniversity, which works with children from severely disadvantaged backgrounds. Every time we say, ‘never again’. But it only takes a week or so before we start thinking about our next event…