Criminologist trades prison for pizza to support army of new home cooks


A criminology professor has launched a new website to support those cooking on a budget during the coronavirus lockdown.

Professor Elizabeth Yardley, who teaches at Birmingham City University’s School of Social Sciences, is swapping crime and restraining orders for cottage pie and risotto with her ‘Pound Chef’ recipes – all executed for less than £1 per person.

School of Social Sciences

Birmingham City University

Professor Yardley, who researches gendered violence and homicide, hopes her recipes will capture imaginations and help to add variety to family menus whilst many of us serve prolonged periods of time behind doors, following government guidelines on social-distancing.

She said: “I’ve been preparing most of my own meals from scratch for years and disappearing into the kitchen to cook is something I really enjoy doing.

“Most of us are now stuck at home and during these times, food becomes something of an obsession! What are we having for lunch? What are we having for dinner? What are we going to eat at the weekend? Many of us have our own go-to recipes, which we are going to get tired of very quickly.

Professor Yardley’s recipes include ‘Easy Speedy Mushroom Risotto’ costing 98p to rustle up, ‘Thin and Crispy Pizza’ for 69p and ‘Warming Carrot and Potato Soup with Garlic and Ginger’, which’ll cost 48p per portion.

“I’m conscious that the recipes I share are affordable and won’t stretch household budgets, which are already under considerable strain given the current situation,” added Yardley. “All of the recipes on my website have an ingredient cost of £1 or less per person.

“I work full time in my academic role, so ‘Pound Chef’ is my weekend and evenings project - I will try and get as many of my recipes up on the website as quickly as I can! I want to ensure that the website responds to the needs of our new army of home cooks, so do feel free to drop me a line via the contact form on the Pound Chef website with any feedback or suggestions.”

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