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My foodie life: Billie Faiers

The Towie star on her favourite dishes, guilty pleasures and ultimate dinner party guest

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My foodie life: Billie Faiers

Reality TV star Billie Faiers, 29, lives in Essex with her husband Greg Shepherd, 34, and their children Nelly, five, and Arthur, two.

What dish reminds you of childhood?

A roast dinner. Mum would do a roast once or twice a week when we were little, usually chicken or lamb. I love roast potatoes! You can’t beat them.

Who cooks at home?

I really enjoy cooking. Sometimes I’m busy and get home late, but I try to prep stuff in the week. We eat chicken casserole all year round and I make a shepherd’s pie-style dish, too – without the potato top but with spinach, peas, carrots and broccoli in it. The kids love it with a bit of cheese on top.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Are Nelly and Arthur fussy eaters?

Not at all! When we were in Valencia, they were eating clams, anchovies and calamari – all the adults were amazed! Growing up, Mum and Dad always encouraged us to try everything and it’s pretty much the same with my kids.

What’s your signature dish?

Spaghetti Bolognese. I make a tomato and chilli sauce, with carrots, onions, celery, beef stock, Worcestershire sauce, red wine, garlic and tomato purée, then I simmer it for hours.

Any kitchen disasters?

Once, I tried to do seafood gnocchi from scratch, which took me ages. It had white wine in the sauce and it just tasted like seafood floating in white wine! Greg and I had a couple of mouthfuls and then we were like, ‘Hmm, shall we leave that one?’

Do the kids help out in the kitchen?

Yes, Nelly really wants to be involved. Recently, she was like, ‘I really want a jacket potato with tuna and cheese’ and she got her little stool to stand on, ready to help me make it. We also bake cakes and cookies and she loves decorating them all – and eating the icing as she goes, of course!

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Who’s the best cook in the family?

My Nanny Liz. She’s one of those nans who’s always in the kitchen. She makes cakes, sausage rolls, pork pies... all the good stuff! It’s her and my granddad’s thing – they love their food.

How do you stay in shape?

Just before Greg and I got married in March, I got a personal trainer to help me out and keep me motivated – and I’ve kept it up. I do weight training with some cardio. If I can’t find the time, I just try to eat a bit healthier.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Ultimate dinner party guests?

Elton John – I watched Rocketman and there was so much in that film about his life that I never even knew, so I feel like he’s very interesting. And Kris Jenner – she’d be really good.

And your ultimate comfort food?

I love a cheese and ham toastie.

Most hated food?

Offal – Mum used to cook it when we were little, but I hate the texture.

Guilty pleasure?

Chinese takeaway – chicken chow mein, satay, prawn toasts, duck spring rolls…

most rated?

Tapas is my favourite food. Prawns pil pil with garlic and chilli is delicious.

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Inspired to make a Spag bol, cheese toastie or roast dinner like Billie? Pick up everything you need online, or pop into your local store.