Zoe Warde-Aldam is a freelance food photographer originally from Northumberland, now based in London.
“I like to draw on my rural upbringing to tell stories about food and where it comes from. I am often found at 6am, camera in hand, chasing the morning light to snap a foodie scene in a beautiful setting. I enjoy the buzz of photographing a gourmet event and also working with chefs to capture their dishes in the best possible way.”
What’s the best game dish you’ve ever cooked?
When I was working in a lodge in South Africa I was given a Springbok to cook that evening. Having no idea what to do with it, I put it into a big pot with a load of red wine, slowly cooked it and it turned out to be a huge success, similar to venison!
Any tips on cooking with game?
A recent tip I picked up was to soak grouse in milk before cooking. This reduces how gamey the bird tastes and is helpful when introducing people to eating game when they find the taste too strong.
Is there any game you don’t – or wouldn’t – eat?
Big game like lion – don’t fancy any of that on the menu! Name your favourite chef that cooks game. Tom Kitchin – he always comes up with innovative ideas about how to incorporate game into his menu. I think it is important to push the boundaries when cooking with game and to pair it with interesting flavours, which he does.
Name your favourite chef that cooks game.
Tom Kitchin – he always comes up with innovative ideas about how to incorporate game into his menu. I think it is important to push the boundaries when cooking with game and to pair it with interesting flavours, which he does.
Tell us about your most memorable – not necessarily the best – day’s shooting.
People do get confused when I say I’m shooting in June – its photoshoots rather than pheasant shoots that take up my time. My best photoshoot would be photographing my favourite chefs’ food outside – I love photographing alfresco dining. I also enjoy photographing where food comes from. During lockdown I did a series of chicken and lamb photos and sold them in aid of a local food bank.
To what lengths should shoots (and guns) go, to ensure as much shot game as possible enters the food chain?
I think this is particularly important right now for game not to be wasted. It is an easily traceable food source and should be utilised to the full, I’d go for roast pheasant over chlorinated chicken any day. I think game needs to be made more available to those who don’t shoot- it is important big players in the food world bring game onto menus to whet everyone’s appetite.
How do you think we can promote eating game in the future?
I am constantly telling stories about food with my photography. I think it is really important to be able to trace where what we eat comes from and have an understanding about the food chain from field to fork. I think photography can play a big part in educating people about the provenance of their food. I also believe it is a powerful tool in marketing game to everyone and making sure it is not only available to the shooting community. //