A mum and daughter are keeping the memory of a loved one alive – by cooking his recipes in their new Sheffield tearoom.
Wendy and Jennie Whomersley set up The Cosy Tearoom inside the Sheffield Antiques Emporium on Clyde Road as a new challenge after Wendy’s husband, and Jennie’s dad, John Whomersley, died of cancer last year.
He was well known in Sheffield as the former chef at the Cross Daggers restaurant in Woodhouse, and met Wendy when they both worked in the industry.
Now former photographer Jennie and Wendy are cooking some of the recipes John was known for, as well as making a name for their own home-made food.
Jennie said: “I was born and bred in the catering industry, they had me silver serving when I was young!
“Mum and dad worked in catering for golf clubs before he died, then the business had to close as mum couldn’t do it without him. I was fed up of being a photographer – I thought doing something different would be a good idea.”
Wendy, of Woodhouse, and Heeley-based Jennie split the catering at their tearoom between them, offering dishes such as hot soups, pastries and cakes.
While they have put their own spin on the menu, with lemon drizzle or rose flavoured scones, plus vegan and gluten free afternoon teas, some such as John’s famous sausage rolls are from his tried and tested favourites.
His photograph is also on the wall of the tearoom, and some customers have been harking back to the days when they celebrated weddings with the family at the Cross Daggers.
Jennie added: “A few weeks ago we had eggs Benedict on the menu and were having a nightmare with the Hollandaise, then mum cracked it. She says it was because she looked up at his picture and said ‘come on John, let’s make it work. We are very proud of ourselves for carrying on some of dad's and our own cooking recipes and skills."