The Award

The Jane Grigson Trust Award for New Food and Drink Writers 2021 Shortlist Announcement

The shortlist for the Jane Grigson Trust Award 2021 is announced today, Monday 22 February 2021.

The three shortlisted books are:

  • Hungry Heart – A Story of Food and Love by Clare Finney (to be published by Aurum, February 2023)
  • Mother Tongue – Flavours of a Second Generation by Gurdeep Loyal (to be published by Fourth Estate, April 2022)
  • Breadsong – How Bread Changed our Lives by Kitty & Alex Tait (to be published by Bloomsbury, May 2022)

Created in memory of the distinguished British food writer Jane Grigson, the Jane Grigson Trust Award is made to a first-time writer of a book about food or drink which has been commissioned but not yet published. In the spirit of Jane Grigson and her writing, the Award is for a non-fiction book on food and drink in the widest sense, from any genre – cookbook, memoir, travel, history – as long as the primary subject is food or drink.


The 2021 Jane Grigson Trust Award Shortlist

Hungry Heart – A Story of Food and Love by Clare Finney

From the totemic value of Christmas dinner to the Krispy Kremes in the staff kitchen via the solace of chicken soup to the silliness of ice cream, this book uses Clare’s own life – and the recipes that shaped it ­– as a leitmotif in an honest account of humans breaking bread together and what, in a world of Deliveroo and digital communication, that really means.

Clare Finney’s first food article – about her divorced parents and their new spouses coming together for Christmas dinner – was published in a local magazine when she was 18. Named Food Writer of the Year in Fortnum and Mason’s Food and Drink writing awards 2019, she now writes for a variety of national and regional magazines and newspapers, interviewing chefs, farmers and food producers and covering everything from comfort food to caviar. @finneyclare


Mother Tongue – Flavours of a Second Generation by Gurdeep Loyal

Using his own experience as a second generation British Indian as a starting point, through recipes and text Gurdeep explores the popular traditions of second generation food writers who both celebrate their parents’ legacy and see themselves as cultural in-betweeners.  With recipes for everything from chat paneer hot dogs to coconut crab crumpets, Gurdeep shows how the blended cuisines of second generation children around the world today should be celebrated in their own right.

Gurdeep Loyal has worked in the food industry for many years and is currently head of food trends at Marks & Spencer. He curates the online platform Mother Tongue which celebrates second generation food stories from around the world. @gurd_loyal


Breadsong – How Bread Changed our Lives by Kitty & Alex Tait

Two years ago, in a moment of personal crisis, father and daughter Alex and Kitty baked a loaf of bread together in their family kitchen. One loaf turned into ten, which turned into hundreds and, following a very successful Kickstarter campaign, they opted out of the lives society expected of them (school for 14-year-old Kitty, a teaching career for her dad) and into the lives they wanted for themselves.

In May 2019 they opened The Orange Bakery in Watlington, Oxfordshire, which has been a huge hit, with people travelling from far and wide to sample their bread, buns and biscuits. This book charts Alex and Kitty’s journey from that first loaf, merging lots of delicious recipes and the story of creating a successful small bakery with their experiences of how doing something as simple as baking bread can bring a family together. therealorangebakery


Chair of Judges, Geraldene Holt says:

“From the launch six years ago of the Trust’s Award for new writing we have encouraged entries from a broad spectrum of food writing. The standard of entry was exceptionally high this year, so it was very hard to come up with a shortlist of just three.  The three shortlisted books all contain wonderful recipes but they are also memoirs in which the authors explore their identities and place in the world through food.  Deciding the winner will be a fascinating though difficult task.”

Joining Geraldene Holt (food writer and chair of the Jane Grigson Trust) on the judging panel for the 2021 award are: Angela Clutton (food writer, broadcaster, and 2018 Jane Grigson Trust Award winner); Henrietta Green (food writer and Trustee of the JGT), Gareth Grundy (deputy editor of Observer Food Monthly), and Diana Henry (food writer and Trustee of the JGT).

The winning book will be announced on Monday 22 March. The author(s) of the winning book will receive a cheque for £2000 and the runners-up will receive £100 book tokens. All shortlisted authors will receive copies of The Best of Jane Grigson.


For more information please contact Laura Creyke at MHM

on / 07951 777407 / @MarkHMgmt



  • Previous winners of the Jane Grigson Trust Award are: Kirsty Scobie and Fenella Renwick for The Seafood Shack, Elly McCausland for The Botanical Kitchen and Dan Saladino for The Ark of Taste (joint winners), Angela Clutton for The Vinegar Cupboard, Vicky Hayward for The New Art of Cookery: A Spanish Friar’s Kitchen Notebook and Alex Andreou for The Magic Bayleaf.
  • The Jane Grigson Trust Award is open to UK citizens or to foreign nationals who have been resident in the UK for more than three years
  • The Jane Grigson Trust is an educational charity set up in memory of the celebrated food writer Jane Grigson (Registered Charity No. 1002742)
  • Members of the judging panel and the shortlisted authors are available for comment and interview

Past Winners

Kirsty Scobie and Fenella Renwick

The winner of the Jane Grigson Trust award 2020 was:

Kirsty Scobie and Fenella Renwick: The Seafood Shack

Kirsty and Fenella set up The Seafood Shack in Ullapool in western Scotland in 2016. The Seafood Shack has built up a strong fanbase and this book will mix Kirsty and Fenella’s most popular recipes with their story of creating a new food business, a look at the Scottish seafood and fishing industry and a reflection on the lives of the fishermen at its heart.  It will be published by Kitchen Press in the Autumn of 2020.

We are both absolutely overwhelmed to have won the Jane Grigson Award, especially being up against three inspirational women. We couldn't have done it without our amazing publisher Emily at Kitchen Press, who encouraged us to enter, but also the community of Ullapool and our fab customers. Without you all, there would be no Seafood Shack! Thank you so much.
Elly McCausland

The winner of the Jane Grigson Trust award 2019 was:

Elly McCausland: The Botanical Kitchen

The Botanical Kitchen, an in-depth exploration of our passion for all parts of the plant – from rose petals to raspberries, blackcurrants to bergamot, and lavender to lime leaves – will be published by Absolute Press in the sprnig of 2020. It will combine Elly’s love of literature, food culture and history with her passion for herbs, spices, fruit and tea.

Winning the award was the most wonderful thing to happen in the development of my book, giving me a renewed sense of inspiration, energy and a sense of why food writing continues to matter in the world. It gave me the drive to push forward in finishing a book that I hope Jane herself would have enjoyed.
Dan Saladino

The winner of the Jane Grigson Trust award 2019 was:

Dan Saladino: The Ark of Taste

In The Ark of Taste, radio journalist Dan Saladino will take the reader on a revelatory journey of discovery into the world’s most endangered foods and disappearing flavours.

Winning the award made a significant difference to the direction of my first book. On a practical level it made an important research trip possible and led to new ideas and themes being added. But equally important; the award gave me a huge amount of confidence in the stories I was telling and the messages I wanted the book to get across.
Angela Clutton

The winner of the Jane Grigson Trust award 2018 was:

Angela Clutton: The Vinegar Cupboard

In this fascinating and unique book, food writer and historian Angela Clutton demonstrates the many great ways vinegars can be used to balance and bring flavour, which will enable modern cooks to make the most of this ancient ingredient (to be published by Absolute Press in February 2019).

The Jane Grigson Trust Award has made just the most enormous difference to the development of The Vinegar Cupboard. To anyone who has done the amazing feat of getting a first book commissioned, I can only wholeheartedly say they should - must - apply for this because it is a very, very good thing indeed.
Vicky Hayward

The winner of the Jane Grigson Trust award 2017 was:

Vicky Hayward: The New Art of Cookery: A Spanish Friar’s Kitchen Notebook

Drawing on her deep knowledge of Spanish culture, Vicky Hayward gives a modern retelling of an eighteenth-century classic cookbook, including fresh, simple and surprisingly easy to make recipes. (Published by Rowman & Littlefield in the UK in September 2017)

Vicky said of winning the Award:

My heartfelt thanks go to the Trust for the 2017 Award; it has drawn me back to Jane’s scholarly, inclusive, independent writing and, in so doing, it has given me inspiration for the years to come.
Alex Andreou

The winner of the Jane Grigson Trust award 2016 was:

Alex Andreou: The Magic Bay Leaf

In an evocative mix of memoir and recipes, Alex Andreou writes about the food of the Greek islands. (To be published by Chatto & Windus – awaiting publication)

At precisely the point when the project looked far too titanic to tackle, when I had begun to doubt myself – as every writer must – the Jane Grigson Trust Award put the wind back in my sails. It gave me the boost, focus and breathing space to break through my barriers. I will be ever grateful for Jane Grigson’s vision and the Trust’s faith.