For 20 years, Rachel Muse has been getting ready meals for the wealthy and well-known.
As a personal chef, she has served enterprise leaders, musicians, sports activities stars and the landed gentry.
Rachel’s early shoppers included two Formulation 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 Crew GB Olympic swimmers, Americas Cup sailors, rugby gamers and top-flight footballers, together with two members of Scotland’s nationwide group 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 a giant drawer of their dwelling stuffed with issues that they attempt to maintain hidden – their naughty drawer,” she says.
“It’ll have issues like crisps, pop tarts and every kind of sweets, all of the issues that will go down very well at a youngsters’s celebration – each sort of naughtiness you’ll be able to consider.
Rachel, whose enterprise Speak Eat Snort is predicated in Salisbury, was additionally shocked to learn the way little some shoppers knew about fundamental foodstuffs.
“A couple of footballer has mentioned to me: ‘What kind of animal is a lentil?’,” she says.
“They’re clever folks however a lot of them come from backgrounds the place they did not have entry to essentially good contemporary meals. They had been consumed 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 a substitute on assembly an athlete’s particular person dietary necessities.
She says: “Meals could be very psychological – generally 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 contemporary and packed stuffed with vitamin, and 20% of it’s naughty, I am undoubtedly not going to ring up their nutritionist and inform them what they had been consuming simply earlier than or after dinner.
“In any case, in case you are an athlete and you’re actually operating round all day, energy aren’t really the difficulty – it is about vitamin.”
In response to Rachel, as soon as an athlete has realised that contemporary meals will be as tasty as a “naughty” snack, they often get on board with their food plan.
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’ll be able to 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 must be a skilful chef to drag it off.
“We discover that once they style the distinction, as an illustration, 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 gadgets in it.”
Rachel says her work has shattered her preconceptions about footballers.
She says: “Years in the past I bought a random telephone name asking if I wish 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 belongings you would need from a consumer.
“That is not essentially true of businessmen, who I’ve discovered will be very poor at speaking and tough to work for.
“It made me realise I had been utterly fallacious about footballers.”
Nevertheless, Rachel acknowledges that her shoppers can generally be demanding.
“Performers can get very harassed at instances – you see that lots simply earlier than they carry out,” she says.
“They sort of want that vitality, to feed off it – they want the stage-fright to carry out and be particular and that is a part of their factor.
“So typically 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 a giant operate I will be abrupt as a result of I haven’t got any house in my head for coping with anything.”