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This much I know: Jessie Lear


Our OcadoLife editor Jessie shares her foodie obsessions and inspirations. Just don't ask her for a music recommendation.

I’m pretty impatient. I watched The Batman and was desperate for him to speak or walk just a fraction faster so that it might be over sooner. I’d give short shrift to that man, no matter how chiselled his jawline.

The alchemy that happens in a kitchen is endlessly fascinating to me. I’ve been cooking a lot from the Rangoon sisters’ cookbook (they’re contributors on the OcadoLife magazine that I edit) and making a set tapioca dessert with a coconut custard. Watching the tapioca transform into frogspawn was compelling stuff. If that’s not a wonderful witch’s brew, I don’t know what is.

Throughout the interview for my first role at Sunday, I called the then creative director Mike. His name is Matt. I got the job anyway. Sunday is a creative and lively place, and supportive of progress. It must be doing something right because I’m still here 14 years later.

I love living in London, but I crave green. I need to be in the garden or out and about in nature. I can’t live without pickles either. And custard donuts. Anything with custard. Which must be deep in my psyche as they were my treat when growing up.

Food is my passion, and in my role I get to legitimately think and talk about food all day – which I would be doing naturally, but that was probably quite tedious for people when I was working on other client accounts.

I’m proud of taking OcadoLife from a bi-monthly to a monthly publication in the middle of the pandemic. It was a huge challenge and testament to the whole team’s commitment and resilience that it has been such a success.

If I weren’t at Sunday I’d probably be a writer or, as a natural show-off, an actor. I studied English and Art at university, and I sometimes wonder what might have happened if I’d taken the arty career path.

I tend to panic when someone asks me for a music recommendation. I think it reveals too much about you if you just listen to Hamilton on repeat. I’ve become partial to a bit of country music and bluegrass so I would probably tell people to try The Dead South.

Why are dogs so obsessed with sticks? It doesn’t make sense to me because even those who aren’t bred to retrieve are obsessed with them. Let it go, guys.

I’ve been having words with myself recently about trying to stay up past 9pm. The thought of getting into my pyjamas as soon as I finish dinner is glorious. I’ve got into the habit of having a little sherry before dinner, too. I didn’t see it coming. I’d like to say it’s my Spanish side coming out, but really it’s just my age.

Every so often, I go back to a game I played as a student where I combine all the foods on one shelf in my fridge. If you’ve never tried cheddar ‘crudité’ dipped in mayo, give it a go. And a touch of marmalade in a bacon sandwich takes it to another level. I like dinner foods for breakfast, and I don’t just mean leftover curry or pizza – anything you’d eat for dinner, I’ll happily eat as my first meal of the day. Sets you up nicely. As does cake. And custard.

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