Feature Friday: Marta Bradshaw

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Marta Bradshaw, is the founder of Eataway, but also one of our cooks! She cooks each week in her home in Krakow for travellers and locals who are looking for authentic Polish food, often even on holidays. A night at Marta's home is never dull, in fact even a conversation with Marta is always fun! To view her upcoming meals go to her Cook Profile.

What does food mean to you?

Adventure and relaxation at the same time!

 

How did you learn to cook? Was cooking always a part of your life?

I started learning from my grandmother by watching her when I was little. My mum was a professional cook, but I didn't learn so much from her, as she was always tired after cooking in restaurants, so didn't cook a lot at home!

 

What do you like the most about hosting?

People's reactions. I love seeing how they enjoy the food, and also meeting the other guests. We've had some memorable times! It's always exciting waiting for the guests and finding out who is actually coming to dinner.

 

What is the most unforgettable meal you have ever had?

Cumin soup with Kasia and her Mum in Glichów. The taste was amazing, but even more so the setting on a Polish farm on a beautiful summer day. These moments remain with you forever.

 

A favourite memory from hosting an Eataway meal?

Receiving a gift of dried mango from the garden of a fantastic couple from Florida. What a taste!

 

What is one ingredient you always have in your house?

Juniper berries.

 

What is your family's favourite thing you cook for them?

Gołąbki - stuffed cabbage rolls - a Polish classic.

 

What is something interesting about your country's food culture?

Lots of produce comes from the forests - mushrooms, wild boar, berries. Poles love to forage for food. Mushroom-picking is a national pastime in the autumn. There are few better feelings than finding your own food and then cooking it!

 

If you could only eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would you choose?

Rosół - simple chicken broth.

 

If you could invite 3 people in the universe to one of your meals, who would you choose?

Sorry - it has to be 4! Joseph Beuys, Charlie Chaplin, Marilyn Monroe and Steve Jobs - all at the same time!

 

The funniest or most interesting thing that has happened while you have been hosting an Eataway meal?

One of our guests was from Zimbabwe - where my husband was born. It's a small world!

 

Your table is full of travellers, what 3 things do you suggest they do in Krakow?

1) Visit Nowa Huta.

2) Take a walk up the Krakow Mounds, like Kopiec Kosciuszki, to see the view

3) Go to the Flea Market at Grzegórzki on a Sunday morning.

 

Who is your favourite Eataway cook to visit on nights you're not cooking?

Impossible to choose! They are all super cooks and wonderful hosts, and now great friends....

 

What is your favourite thing to do in your spare time?

Gardening at our cottage in the Polish countryside... or hunting for mushrooms!

 

What is your cooking style like? Do you listen to music, plan ahead, make a mess, etc…

Plenty of planning, but things seem to take their own course once I'm underway.... I rarely use recipes, and love to experiment. It's quiet, intense concentration most of the time before the meal. Once it is all ready, a glass of wine is in order before the guests arrive!

 

What do you do other than cook for Eataway?

I started the Eataway project, so when I'm not cooking, I'm working on spreading the word! By training I am a sculptor, and I have also published the local English-language newspaper and run a web portal with local travel advice.

 

What is your favourite food?

Sznycel.

 

What does Eataway mean to you?

The chance to eat at people's homes around the world. I would like there to be this whole other universe of places to eat, outside the world of restaurants....

 

What would you tell a potential cook that is nervous about hosting a meal?

Have a glass of wine and relax!

 

To have a meal with Marta in Krakow, Poland, view her Cook Profile.