Making Jam at Belfast Cookery School

I recently had the pleasure of working again with South African chef and food writer Rozanne Stevens at Belfast Cookery School. Rozanne was holding a jam making class in association with McKinney’s sugar. The class was made up of local food lovers and writers of different experience and skill levels. The aim of the class was to promote Rozanne’s recipes and McKinney’s sure set jam sugar.

I arrived down at Belfast Cookery school and quickly set up a couple of lights and began photographing the event. Rozanne had already made some jams and these were the first photographs I needed to get before they were eaten at lunchtime.

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I didn’t have a huge amount of space to work in as the room was full of people but I managed to clear part of a large wooden table and set up a few quick shots of the different jams that would be used in the local press and on websites. I normally use a 105mm macro lens for food and small product photography but since I had fairly limited space I used a 50mm lens for all the jam shots. This allowed me to really blur the backgrounds too as I didn’t really want to show the room full of people either.

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After that it was on to making the jams and here everyone got to try making their own individual take on jam. There were a lot of different fruits and flavours being made in the kitchen! I went back and forth through the room getting photos of everyone cooking and some shots of the ingredients being prepared. For lunch Belfast Cookery School/Mourne Seafood Bar were preparing and setting up a fairly large feast of breads, cheeses and meats on the tables. I got a few photos of this just before Rozanne finished preparing a meringue dessert for everyone.

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Overall it was a fun morning, Belfast Cookery School was a great venue, Rozanne was a brilliant host/teacher as usual and as far as I know everyone’s jams turned out great! I’ve added a small gallery below with a selection of images from the day.

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