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Food with a view

PUBLISHED: 14:30 08 September 2015

Under the Grill Feature - Janine Shea, catering manager for the Norfolk Wildlife Trust at Cley Marshes and Holme Dunes.


Under the Grill Feature - Janine Shea, catering manager for the Norfolk Wildlife Trust at Cley Marshes and Holme Dunes. Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

Archant Norfolk 2015

Janine Shea has gone from playing cafés in her mum’s kitchen, to cooking for Sir David Attenborough at the Norfolk Wildlife Trust’s Cley Marshes Visitor Centre.

Why did you choose to become a chef?

I love cooking and wanted to know how to make dishes properly. I wanted to work in a big hotel which I was able to do, mostly in Norfolk and Suffolk, for a few years. And I loved watching cookery programmes on television and wanted to show others how to cook just like Delia.

What is your earliest food-related memory?

I used to play café in my mum’s kitchen, giving my teddies tea parties. Making a mess and being reluctant to clear it up: Some may say nothing has changed there!

What has been the highlight of your career so far?

Working for Norfolk Wildlife Trust and learning about how charities work hard to protect and conserve our environment. The most recent highlight has been providing refreshments for Sir David Attenborough when he opened the Simon Aspinall Wildlife Education Centre here at Cley Marshes.

What do you enjoy most about working at the café at Cley?

No two days are the same. The view constantly changes with the weather and time of year. The café is a busy place where people from all walks of life get together, from people very interested in wildlife to those who love the scones and coffee. My favourite times of day are first thing in a morning and early evening - it’s just great to step outside and hear what’s going on over on the marshes. It’s the perfect place in Norfolk to watch the sunset too, with amazing skies full of colour.

What would you say is special about your menu?

I tend to keep to popular items which are bought in from local suppliers. Our biggest sellers are bacon baps and homemade scones.

What is your favourite local ingredient?

Crabs from Willie Weston at Blakeney.

Are there any foods you can’t stand?

Yes! Liver, corned beef and broad beans.

What would your last supper consist of?

Either a salmon dish or a good steak with Diane sauce, followed by profiteroles and chocolate sauce.

Do you cook for friends and family too?

I love to cook for people and I like to experiment with flavours. I also make a lot of cakes for celebrations and weddings.

Norfolk Wildlife Trust Cley Marshes Visitor Centre,
Cley, NR25 7SA. 01263 740008,

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