About me

Hello

My name is Fiona Crump and this is my blog.

I was born and raised in Cheshire but now live in Cornwall with my husband Martin and we have two beautiful and intelligent daughters who are grown up, fully fledged members of the boomerang generation. At the time of writing we are expecting our first grandchild and I could not be more excited.

For the last 15 years or so I have been working with Martin running evolution Personal and Corporate Development; coaching, counselling and training people to be happy, confident and successful.

When I am not working I am most likely to be talking about, shopping for, cooking or eating food. For the most part I am just your average experimental home cook although I do occasionally run The Unseen Restaurant; an “underground” restaurant, at home. This gives me the opportunity to experiment with my cooking and makes me focus on refinement – which doesn’t always come naturally.

I appreciate fine dining but mid-week you are more likely to find me eating beans on toast and watching Masterchef on the telly. I do care about good quality ingredients and sustainability and would recommend buying seasonal, local produce whenever possible. But sometimes it isn’t possible and guilt is really bad for the digestion.

I am also incredibly lucky to live in Cornwall and have some amazing pubs, cafes and restaurants right here on my doorstep. We live in a thriving village which is able to support two greengrocers, two butchers and a bakery for fresh bread and yummy pasties. In addition we grow lots of our own veg in an allotment just a mile from our house. The allotment is also conveniently close to a lovely pub which helps no end when help is needed with the weeding.

My writing so far has been for a limited audience although I was once asked to write reviews of cheeses for an on-line retailer who paid me in cheese – now that was a great job.

So this is my attempt to share my interest in food with anyone who wants to read it. Please tell me what you think and maybe share your own food stories too.

 

 Why Bunscuffle?

Ok – to be entirely honest it wasn’t my first choice.

With the help of a few good friends I bounced all sorts of ideas about and came up with 10 or so fantastically witty and erudite names for the blog – only to find in every case that someone just as witty and significantly faster had beaten me to it.  I mentioned my frustration to Martin one Sunday morning and he suggested bun scuffle.

He reminded me that an old friend from Liverpool used to refer to parties as bun scuffles so we decided to do a bit of research.  My understanding was that the term originated when church officials threw chunks of dry bread to the hordes of hungry people gathered outside.  The ensuing scramble to lay hands on some sustenance lead to the term bun scuffle.

Later, bun scuffles came to refer to any occasion where the church provided food and the more refined the occasion the more sardonic the use of the phrase.

An entirely different source suggested that the phrase could be traced back to the Victorian nursery where children squabbled over the tea tray suggesting that bun scuffle outlasted the similar phrases “crumpet-scramble” and “muffin-worry”!

During our research (OK, half an hour over coffee with an iPhone), we also found the following headline and illustration from the New Zealand Observer on 14th September 1889 and I loved the idea of ladies swooning over an illegal cup of tea so much it clinched it for me and bun scuffle was born.

What is The Unseen Restaurant?

The Unseen Restaurant started as a challenge.  No 1 Daughter bought me a fabulous Benrik diary for Christmas which claimed it would “change my life”.  Each week the diary set a challenge – some funny, some ludicrous and some incredibly creative – one week it challenged me to run a restaurant in my own home.  So I did.  Twelve paying guests (all friends), a choice of 3 starters, 3 mains and 3 desserts, orders taken on the night and I was the chef, the waitress and the kitchen porter.  Everyone had fun and enjoyed the food and I spent the next 24 hours lying down in a darkened room to recover.

Sometime later I was raising funds for charity and decided to repeat the process.  This time I engaged a little sanity; put together a fixed menu and published it in advance via a closed facebook group.  The idea caught on and I repeated it every month for a year featuring a different nation’s cuisine each time (Lebanese, French, Italian etc.).  Now it runs a little less regularly but is still a fun night and we now raise funds for Shelter for Humanity – a disaster relief charity.

 

 

18 thoughts on “About me

  1. Gonna give the poached egg idea a try tomorrow breakfast time! Occasionally produce one that looks like your picture, but no idea how it works just sometimes!

    Love the name and look forward to checking out more tips and recipes.
    All the best,
    Jane

  2. well done fi all so well laid out and easy to follow you put us all to shame with all your achievements every success to you with bun scuffle xxx

  3. I have never read a blog before,yours is brilliant. I will try that jerk chicken. I am so impressed by your initiative-well done you!

  4. Interesting Blog Fiona and I really believe that you should franchise the Unseen Restaurant. Both Ann and I would like to be considered foodies, but as with many people economics plays a huge part in what we eat. Having said that you have to eat to live so why not feed yourself the best that you can have – eat local, eat fresh, eat in season! Push the boundaries and try as much as possible to vary what you eat, i saw an article which said that the average family eats no more than about 5 dishes! Boredom and malnourishment here we come!

    • Thanks Russ. I agree that economics plays a huge part in what people eat but I find that if we shop fresh each day for that night’s dinner we have very little food waste and that means we can afford to spend a little bit more on great ingredients.
      The Unseen Restaurant is a bit of fun (and some hard work!) but I do like a challenge : ) No need to franchise – just start your own!

  5. Hello Fiona,
    I hope you are well. I am currently working on a Food History assignment exploring the history of Tarta de Santiago. I would like to ask you about your experience eating Tarta de Santiago in Santiago de Compostela, did the tart you ate have the pastry casing or quince jelly that you included in the recipe on your blog post? Also, I would love to hear more about your experience of eating the tart in the Santiago. Please e-mail with your response, that is if you have time a this very busy time of year!

    Thanks,

    Caitlin

    • I take your point Remy – most people would say red but there were other possible answers which would have been accepted by the programme. Just trying to reduce the huge volumes of spam I get. Sorry if it irritated you 🙂

  6. Great blog Fi, hope to make some of your recipies – benrik diary looks intresting and fun, had a look online.Bun Scuffle is a great name – inventive of martin! Would like dad to try the unseen resaurant, but it would likely create chaos in our house! Maybe just 3 meals, than 9?

  7. Really enjoyed reading your blog. I came across it in my search for coffee kisses and then liked your comments about having a techie called Richard!

  8. we have just came out of bun scuffle ,me my wife ,daughter & son in law & our grandson alfie,we had cream tea’s and sandwich,the staff was fantastic,and the scones was awesome,fiona even put a plate of fruit n veg out for alfie free of charge ! which says alot how nice fiona is,we really enjoyed it ,the food and the company of the staff,
    many thanks
    brian

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