At The Table With...Izy Hossack of Top With Cinnamon
Today we're kicking it with Izy Hossack, the London-based blogger from Top With Cinnamon. At 18, Izy is already a stellar photographer, creative recipe maker and, oh yeah, published cookbook author. I'm impressed. In addition to all that, Izy is a full time student focused on biology, chemistry and math. As someone who uses cooking as an outlet to combat the relative lack of creativity in my day job, I love that about her. Plus, she makes things like coconut milk ice cream with a pistachio crumb and blueberries. No big deal.
What is your all-time favorite book, and why?
Well my favourite book is a cookbook — Leith's Baking Bible. It's a hefty thing, over 700 pages long, and features ALL the basic, traditional baking recipes you could ever think of. At the start of each chapter there's a troubleshooting guide to tell you why something went wrong and there are occasional illustrated step-by-step guides. It's such a brilliant book to have around for European-style baking (The few American-style baked goods it features aren't great), I only wish it had more photos!
What meal do you love to cook, and why?
Anything breakfasty! When I have time for a leisurely morning I love cooking a more involved breakfast. Pancakes, french toast or even porridge. It satisfies my sweet tooth without indulging loads and is also normally a breeze to clean up.
What is your favorite food scene from a book, and why?
In Roald Dahl's book The BFG, there's a scene with the little girl (Sophie) trying a fictional drink called Frobscottle which dreamily tastes like vanilla and cream. Apparently the bubbles in this drink move downwards instead of up so cause a side effect which he hilariously describes as 'whizzpopping' *ahem*.
Coffee or tea?
It's a tough one but tea. Earl Grey with milk, please!
What is the last book you abandoned, and why?
Lunch in Paris — I started reading it on my flight back from America a few weeks ago but after 40 or so pages I wasn't feeling it and put it away. I've been too busy to pick it up and try again!
Author you'd most like to meet for dinner, and your order?
I have a feeling that Ruth Reichl would make the most amazing company for dinner. I'm usually stuck between two things on the menu but I think that she'd just say order them both and we'll share! If any kind of ravioli or gnocchi was involved in a dish, I'd order that. Judging from experience I'd probably also end up ordering the fish — gotta love that crispy skin!
Where do you go to find new recipes?
I'm most inspired for savoury recipes when I go out to eat at restaurants. I feel like this is cheeky but if I can't think of something to cook for dinner I'll go online and look at restaurant menus and then make up the dish at home! For sweet stuff, it's always food blogs or Instagram.
Where do you go to find new reads?
I ask my mum — she's a librarian so it's pretty easy for me to get a hold of new books.
Tell us about your blog — the inspiration for it, why you blog, and your favorite aspects.
Top With Cinnamon is my creative outlet — I started it a few years ago after I had been experimenting with creating my own recipes and decided I wanted a place to record and share them. I think it's great that there are so many aspects to running a food blog from social media and design to cooking and photography. I have to say that the cooking and photography parts make me deliriously happy and I've also loved being able to talk to people via social media. It never gets boring!
What are your favorite blogs, and why?
I have a giant list of blogs that I read here so it's super hard to choose! I think that My Name is Yeh [ATTW], Joy the Baker, The Sugar Hit [ATTW] and Wit & Vinegar are all incredible for not only their creations but also their constantly uplifting writing which is guaranteed to make me smile. For photography I love Local Milk, The First Mess, The Bojon Gourmet, Adventures in Cooking, Reclaiming Provincial, Two Red Bowls [ATTW] and Call Me Cupcake. Lastly I really enjoy the overall vibe of A Cozy Kitchen, Oh, Ladycakes and London Bakes.