INTERVIEW: George Craig, Singer & Cookbook Author

June 23, 2016

Funny. You never know where your career path will take you. And given that we live in a world where entrepreneurial spirit is at its absolute highest, there are more exciting work opportunities to grab than ever before.

Take today’s interviewee George Craig, for example.

You may recognise George as the Burberry model and lead singer from indie band ‘One Night Only’, who topped the charts with singles ‘You & Me’ and ‘Just for Tonight’ back in 2008. In fact, I vividly remember my 13 year old self blaring out those exact songs through my pink iPad nano; skinny jeans and wonky eyeliner in tact to create the ‘indie sleaze’ effect. Ahem, I digress..

Having transitioned from a front man living life on the road to an up and coming recipe developer with a real appreciation for cooking, George and his friend Terry Edwards (also a trained chef) are now the proud authors of their first recipe book, Feeding Friends. And it doesn’t stop there. If you’re a Londoner with a love for innovative food in a relaxed atmosphere, their new ‘Check On’ pop-up events and catering business may be exactly what you’re looking for. The classic British dishes that feature in the book are paired with a the perfect tracks to make the experience all the more tasty.
Although One Night Only have come to a natural pause, George is still hot on the music scene and each night is guaranteed to bring you music to fix the mood and match the food. Think Marvin Gaye’s ‘The Onion Song’  being played at their pop up at Vegucation. Rude not to, really.

Read ahead as I talk to George about his new venture in the food world, his personal favourite recipes from Feeding Friends and why he’d write a song called ‘Pig Bones’. Not as strange as it sounds, I promise…

Hey George! You started off your career in a chart topping band… what was life like on the road?

Traveling the world with the band and my best friends was amazing. We got to see a lot of places, but on tour you don’t really get time to explore, as you are in and out and on to the next destination pretty rapidly. I guess one way of describing it is like a constant stag do with your best mates and playing shows every night and meeting people who love the music you make is a lot of fun.

I can certainly imagine it was pretty full on! What was a typical day on a plate for you?

Crisps, hummus, some sort of ham and cheese in a piece of bread, generally anything beige that you could get your hands on to fill a hole.
Sounds… Delicious? Tell us about when you had a turning point and decided to explore your passion for cooking…
It was when I moved to London and started to eat out with Terry, we quickly realised how expensive that was, so we started to cook things at home that were just as good as the restaurants dishes, as Terry has a great skill set and I learn things along the way.

You and Terry have just released your book, Feeding Friends… congratulations! If you had to pick three of your best recipes from it, what would they be?

I have always loved the Shell Fish and Chips, it just reminds me of up North and home. Then there’s George’s Marvellous Medicine – it’s got my name in it 🙂 And Crayfish Cornish Pasties…

What can we expect to see from your pop up dinners?

We like to make a relaxed fine dining experience at an affordable price: Good food and good music. You will experience classic and well known dishes but with our twist and playfulness.

Transitioning from being a band member to a full time foodie is quite a change – what’s been the biggest thing you have learned so far in your food/business career?

Ive always been on the receiving end of a nice meal or a night out, but I’ve learned how much goes in to doing it right along with the do’s and dont’s.

Cliché question: Where do you see yourself in 10 years time?

It’d be great to carry on writing books and have a TV show about food and music. It’d also be great to find time to make more records myself again!

How would you describe your style of cooking and your food ethos?

Classic British but with playful humour. We like to entertain in a different way and put our character into everything we serve!

And finally –  the one dish you love so much you’d write a song about it would have to be…

It would be ‘pig bones’ which you can find at Bone Daddies in London… You need to go see what I’m talking about!

Fancy a go at some of these crowd pleasing recipes? Grab yourself a copy of Feeding Friends here.

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