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Georgia Levy Wants You To Ditch Your Al-Desko Lunch For Good

One satisfying, quick, from-scratch meal at a time.

Written by Anna Scott

“I think using your lunch as a break is very sensible,” Georgia Levy tells me matter of fact. “It’s a moment of your day when you’re not in front of your screen and are able to totally relax.” Or, at least it will be with new cookbook, Let’s Do Lunch. Yes, we might (mostly) WFH now, but who actually takes time to cook something every single day? Levy’s tasty collection of recipes will, she hopes, end your lunchtime woes for good. And in a timely manner, too. All recipes are designed with speed and taste in mind.

Cooking is in Levy’s genes. With a food-writer for a father, she grew up in a household where meals were a favourite topic of conversation. “I’d be eating my cereal in the morning and mum would already be asking what we should cook for dinner,” she laughs. From an early age, Levy’s dad recruited her as his ‘kitchen assistant’, but it wasn’t long before she was promoted. “At 14, I was already in charge of Christmas dinner,” she says, before adding with a smile, “it does mean I am pretty sick of it now.”

Having cut her teeth at London’s prestigious River Café and developing recipes for Thomasina Miers, of Wahaca fame, Levy loves nothing more than experimenting. “Throughout the years I have just watched, learned, and eventually mastered it! I think that’s what cooking really is – getting inspiration and then trying it yourself.”

She’s also a self-proclaimed OG Instagram user. While she admits some of her earliest posts are hidden, Levy has found a consistent joy in sharing her colourful meals online. It was during lockdown that her following really exploded, actually.

“I spent lockdown with my whole family and naturally I was doing lots of cooking. I began to put a lot more effort into my posts, so Instagram started to ‘notice’ me. Then the food writer Ed Smith featured me in his ‘Follow Friday’. I got like 1000 followers in one day! Ever since then, it has been creeping up.” (16k followers and counting.)

Despite the wealth of time we found ourselves with when confined to our homes, Levy noticed it was the quick recipes that always got the most attention. And with staple sandwich shops no longer an option, people were looking for lunch-inspo, and thus her debut recipe collection was born. “I saw a need – at lunchtime people need satisfying, nutritious food that is quick to make. Whether you lean on batch cooking or decide to make delicious sprinkles that you can put on salads, Let’s Do Lunch is all about knowing which ingredients work well together, quickly.”

As a keen chef, does she think her dad will be dipping into her cookbook? “I have never seen my dad open a cookery book! He is much more of the ‘wing-it’ type. But he is also incredibly polite so…maybe.” His loss, frankly.

Below, Levy chats about the dearth of pasta sauce colour convos and her favourite thing on the Internet right now.

Fast Follow With @georgia_levy_

Who’s your favourite person you’re following right now and why?

It has to be Sam Youkilis. He’s a photographer, based in Italy, and he does incredible street photography. It’s so picturesque, but also very witty. For instance, he captures moments like a family all in matching outfits. I think he’s amazing.

Who’s the person who has followed you who you were most excited by?

Ainsley Harriott! He’s a chef I had idolised for a long time. He has never commented, but I know he is there.

Did you interact at all after he followed you?

I haven’t slid into his DMs – yet. I am waiting for the right time!

What’s the best thing you’ve seen on the internet this week?

Hands down it is a guy who sings with his cheetah puppet! I found goodboy.noah on Instagram and basically he writes raps which are conversations about cooking between him and the cheetah.

What did you learn from it?

There’s one about what to do with leftover chicken. He made curry salad chicken and served it in a croissant. It was actually quite informative!

What was the last internet rabbit hole you went down?

I was making a pasta sauce for a child using fresh tomatoes – some were yellow, and some were red. I was trying to Google what colour sauce you would get if you mixed them.

I thought it would be orange but then I panicked that it might turn brown! I was very concerned, but Google had no answer for me. I even scrolled through multiple pages! I am forced to conclude that no one cares about the colour of their tomato sauce as much as I do. In the end, it was very orange, but it tasted delicious!

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.