About

Hi. My name is Rachel Baker and I live in a rural village on the outskirts of Bath in England with my husband and daughter. I am a freelance food writer and creator of the fruit preserves company With her Hands. In 2010 I launched my preserve business from my home and four years on I am still a one-woman operation. I am fortunate enough to have a fruit plot and a small orchard where I grow my own fruit, keep bees and a few chickens. This blog is a journal of recipes and stories. The recipes and ideas you'll find here revolve around the seasons and I hope that through the simple and unique preserves I create, you too will discover a whole new world of fruit and flavour pairing possibilities.

Thanks so much for stopping by.


Frequently asked questions 

Q
Why did you start With her Hands? 

A
The kitchen has always been my favourite room in the house and an orchard or vegetable patch my favourite place outside. Some of my earliest memories revolve around outside picking, in particular fruit: blackberry picking; scrumping apples down the back lane; and my favourite of all, gathering the first greengages from my great grandmothers' orchard.

Q
How did you learn to preserve?

I inherited a passion for 'putting things by' from my great grandmother who had a well stocked orchard and subsequently a well stocked pantry. I can still remember the smell of fresh plum jam cooking on the stove top which made the house smell like Christmas

Over the years I've learnt the technical aspects of preserve making through extensive reading and have developed my own methods along the way to create the freshest tasting fruit preserves with no  commercial pectin and no hidden nasties. 

Q
What is your favourite recipe?

A
Apple Jam with Salted Caramel because I love the combination of sweet and salty. The recipe is on the blog.


Why the name With her Hands?

A
It encapsulates everything I do. All fruit is hand picked, hand prepared, hand poured and hand packaged.

Q
What advice can you give to somebody starting out with preserve making?

A
Great preserves start with great fruit. Be picky about the quality and provenance of fruit. I've been known to drive over 40 miles to find an orchard specialising in heirloom varieties of apples and pears. 

Q
Do you sell your preserves anywhere?


A
No, I don't. I am available for private contracts only. Please contact me at withherhands@btinternet to discuss your requirements. 


Q
What is your education?

A
I hold an MA in Writing from Bath Spa University and my work has been featured in Crumbs, Homes & Gardens, and In Clover. In a former life I was a wedding stylist.

Q
Are you open to enquiries from other magazine and online publications for features and article writing?

A
Yes, I am.

Q
How do I contact you?

A
Email me at withherhands@btinternet.com

Q
Who takes the photographs on With her Hands?

A
Except where noted, I do.

Q
What kind of camera do you use?

A
A Canon EOS 1100D 

Q
Is it OK if I use one of your photos or recipes somewhere else?

A
All photos and text on this site are protected by copyright and may not be used without permission.

Q
Are you on Twitter? Instagram? Facebook?
Yes, yes, and yes