For 20 years, Rachel Muse has been making ready meals for the wealthy and well-known.
As a non-public chef, she has served enterprise leaders, musicians, sports activities stars and the landed gentry.
Rachel’s early shoppers included two Method One drivers, a classical pianist, an Irish rock band supervisor and different rich people such because the late English industrialist Baron Hanson.
However 5 years in the past, she arrange store as a “efficiency” chef, creating bespoke meals for elite athletes primarily based on the recommendation of their nutritionists.
She has since cooked for Workforce GB Olympic swimmers, Americas Cup sailors, rugby gamers and top-flight footballers, together with two members of Scotland’s nationwide crew and 9 English Premier League gamers.
The 49-year-old Wiltshire-based chef refuses to disclose their identities however says she found some fascinating secrets and techniques about their consuming habits.
“Fairly almost each athlete I’ve labored with has an enormous drawer of their dwelling filled with issues that they attempt to preserve hidden – their naughty drawer,” she says.
“It should have issues like crisps, pop tarts and every kind of sweets, all of the issues that may go down rather well at a youngsters’s celebration – each type of naughtiness you may consider.
Rachel, whose enterprise Speak Eat Snicker relies in Salisbury, was additionally stunned to learn how little some shoppers knew about primary foodstuffs.
“Multiple footballer has stated to me: ‘What kind of animal is a lentil?’,” she says.
“They’re clever individuals however a lot of them come from backgrounds the place they did not have entry to actually good recent meals. They had been ate up packet meals and thought that was regular.
“I’ve seen athletes we began working with consuming croissants smothered in Nutella or two packets of Doritos and thought of them to be meals.”
Rachel says she turns a blind eye to the “naughty drawer”, focusing as an alternative on assembly an athlete’s particular person dietary necessities.
She says: “Meals could be very psychological – typically people who find themselves having a little bit of a grumpy day simply fancy consuming a packet of crisps.
“I feel if 80% of the meals they eat is admittedly good high quality and is recent and packed filled with vitamin, and 20% of it’s naughty, I am positively not going to ring up their nutritionist and inform them what they had been consuming simply earlier than or after dinner.
“In any case, if you’re an athlete and you might be actually operating round all day, energy aren’t truly the difficulty – it is about vitamin.”
In keeping with Rachel, as soon as an athlete has realised that recent meals might be as tasty as a “naughty” snack, they often get on board with their eating regimen.
She says: “As soon as we now have the knowledge we’d like from their nutritionists, we ask them what they really need to eat on any given day.
“As a chef you may monkey round with most issues and make a decrease carb model, decrease sugar model or a better protein model of no matter they ask for – however you do have to be a skilful chef to drag it off.
“We discover that once they style the distinction, for example, between a freshly-made cake and one from a packet that was made two weeks beforehand in a manufacturing unit, their naughty drawer tends to have fewer objects in it.”
Rachel says her work has shattered her preconceptions about footballers.
She says: “Years in the past I acquired a random telephone name asking if I want to cook dinner for a footballer in Southampton – 15 miles away from the place I used to be dwelling.
“All I knew about footballers was once they had been misbehaving, once they had been on the entrance web page of a newspaper.
“I went to see him and he was actually hardworking, devoted, well mannered and all of the stuff you would need from a consumer.
“That is not essentially true of businessmen, who I’ve discovered might be very poor at speaking and tough to work for.
“It made me realise I had been fully flawed about footballers.”
Nonetheless, Rachel acknowledges that her shoppers can typically be demanding.
“Performers can get very careworn at instances – you see that quite a bit simply earlier than they carry out,” she says.
“They type of want that power, to feed off it – they want the stage-fright to carry out and be particular and that is a part of their factor.
“So usually simply earlier than they carry out they will get a bit in their very own heads, a bit demanding – however that is simply them.
“And in all honesty, as a chef, if I am cooking for an enormous perform I might be abrupt as a result of I haven’t got any house in my head for coping with anything.”