The Hemsley sisters are as much chatterboxes as they are chefs, finishing each others’ sentences and chipping in all over the place.
“I am the big sister and she’s the bossy sister,” Jasmine, 36, explains wryly, pointing at Melissa, 30.
The healthy-eating aficionados set up their company and lifestyle blog, Hemsley + Hemsley six years ago.
They were picked up by Vogue as columnists within weeks of starting out, their first book, The Art Of Eating Well was an international hit, and now they’re celebrating the release of their “second baby”, Good + Simple.
“Good + Simple is pretty much what it says on the tin,” buzzes Melissa. “Everything that went into it had to taste very good, do you good, and be really simple to make, and that is pretty much how we cook anyway - from Monday morning to Friday night.”
Here’s one of their delightful dishes to whet your appetite.
MUM’S PHILIPPINE BEEF SINIGANG
700g rib-eye steak
2 medium onions, diced
6 garlic cloves, diced
5cm piece of fresh root ginger unpeeled (if organic), thinly sliced
20 cherry tomatoes, halved
3tbsp tamarind paste
A big pinch of black or white pepper
3-4tbsp fish sauce (nam pla)
400g green beans, tops trimmed
400g pak choi, leaves and stalks roughly chopped
2 whole fresh red chillies
How to make
lCut the meat into 3cm cubes, retaining the fat as it will flavour the stew. Place in a large saucepan and pour in the water. Bring to the boil, then cover and quickly reduce the heat and cook at a medium-to-low simmer for 20 minutes.
lAdd the onions, garlic, ginger and tomatoes with the tamarind paste, pepper and fish sauce. Bring back up to a simmer and cook, covered, for a further 15 minutes. Taste for seasoning, adding more tamarind paste for a sourer flavour, if desired. Remember fish sauce is salty and brands vary in strength.
lTip in the beans, pak choi and whole chillies, then bring back up to a simmer and cook covered for five more minutes.
lAdd the spinach and remove the pan from the heat, leaving the lid on to allow the spinach to wilt. Remove the chillies and serve immediately.
Good + Simple by Melissa and Jasmine Hemsley Photography by Nick Hopper, published by Ebury Press, priced £25.