The story behind Marie et Marcelle

Photo Credit: Dominique Nok and Wandsworth Council

My name is Pauline. I am a passionate epicurean with a love of food that blossoms from my French heritage.

For me, cooking has always been a family affair. My fondest food memories take me back to holidays spent at my grandparents’ farm in Charente, France. 

Each season was rich with happy moments. Winter at the farm was characterised by the yearly family reunions, spending time together by the fireplace in the kitchen. Each person took a role in putting together a feast; a tradition that remains in place to this day.

We celebrated Easter with lamb, slowly cooked over the embers. Summer was my favourite; we roamed the outdoors picking fruits, eating plenty while keeping enough to make delicious jams. My grandmother would show us how to care for the fruits, vegetables and flowers. In autumn we would prepare jars with the many types of nuts that were harvested.

During these golden moments I got closest to my grandmother, “Mamie” Marcelle, and learned to respect the ingredients that came from our soil. Her skills had been given to her by her mother Marie. She passed down to me her love for food, and the joy found in sharing it with others. It was by her side, carefully watching her movements, that I learned how to cook.

 Photo by Damien DUFOUR Photographie on Unsplash

Photo of Charente by Damien DUFOUR Photographie on Unsplash

This spark inspired my journey into the epicurean world. I started my education in the culinary and hospitality fields with the dream to become a chef and open my own restaurant. I trained in a 2-Michelin star kitchen, worked in luxury hotels and palaces, and ran a catering business with friends. I’ve worked in France, the Caribbean, the United States, and crossed continents before settling down in London. Whilst in the recent years I have worked in a different industry, I came to realise that creativity and taste experimentation had always been a personal passion.

Cooking has always been a refuge; where a simple taste or texture can whisk me back to those magical memories of my youth. This new chapter, back in the culinary world, is a tribute to “Mamie” Marcelle and her mother Marie. And it is a shining wish; to share this part of my heritage with you.