Multi-award winning food blogger Emily Leary is the face behind A Mummy Too, a food and lifestyle blog aimed at busy parents on the go. Created in 2011 and born out of a love of cooking, family and photography, the blog contains all the ingredients you need to create dishes including quick and easy such as Grilled Halloumi Vegetable Couscous and gluten-free Chocolate and Strawberry Parcels. In this spotlight, Emily, who featured on our top 10 UK food blogs chats to us about the being featured in The Sun, why she prefers creative partnerships with PRs, and why she is focused on cultivating her vlogging career.
If you could describe your blog in three words what would it be? Positive family food.
How did you get into blogging about food? I started just writing about being a working mum and looking at how to find joy in the small chunks of time we all get to spend together. Food was an obvious part of that, and over time became the main focus of my blog.
What are the biggest challenges and greatest rewards of being a food blogger? The biggest challenge is time management. There’s almost no limit to the amount of work you can put into your blog so it’s really crucial to keep an eye on things to maintain a decent work-life balance.
The greatest reward, I think, is doing a job every day that I absolutely adore. I get to spend creative, happy times with my family and translate that into my work. I also love when people share their experiences of cooking my recipes. Being part of their special family time in that way is a privilege I’ll never grow tired of.
What’s your favourite recipe? With a lot of cooking to do in between school runs, emails, events and the rest, I’m a big fan of quick, veg packed dishes. This carrot and mango curry is mild and sweet enough to win over the whole family, and you can switch the veggies for whatever you have in the fridge.
Name one ingredient that you can’t live without? Pepper! A life without seasoning would be a sad life indeed.
Where do you draw your cooking inspiration from? I draw my inspiration from our travels, mostly. The children also have a lot of input into the meals I create, which sometimes includes weird and wonderful combination requests such as fruity couscous, which is now a breakfast favourite.
Who would you consider a culinary icon? Nigel Slater. His approach to food is so warm and relaxed. Cooking should be a joyous, satisfying experience and I think his recipes are very true to that.
What do you think is going to be the next big thing in the food industry? I was featured in the Daily Mail and The Sun earlier this year talking about ways to reduce food waste. I think (and hope) that this is going to continue to be a big talking point in 2017.
How do you like to work with PRs? And how can they improve their blogger outreach? I love hearing from PRs. I try to stay bang up to date with what’s happening in food, so I welcome press releases and new product announcements. I can’t reply to them all, but I read everything I’m sent.
However, I don’t really run straight news/announcement pieces, so if you’re hoping to arrange some coverage, focusing on how we can partner on creative, actionable content (such as a recipe post, tips, gadget trials etc) is the best way to approach me.
What’s one piece of cooking advice you’d like to share with our readers? To become a really great cook, start by following tried and tested recipes. Master those skills, understand those flavour combinations, then you’re ready to throw away the rule book and start creating dishes that are entirely your own.
You’re a popular food blogger, but are there any food blogs that you follow? I follow lots of food bloggers. The UK food blogging scene is very much a community and I have a wide network of blogging friends who are very supportive of each other. My favourites are Eats Amazing, Taming Twins, My Fussy Eater, Le Coin de Mel, Charlotte’s Lively Kitchen, Healthy Little Foodies, and Croque Maman.
What’s next in your career as a food blogger? I’m working the beginnings of a family food book at the moment, and also growing my food channel, which you can find at youtube.com/amummytoocouk