Georgia native Britt Moore is expanding the art of flavor to reach beyond the plate. This culinary zealot and fashionista holds fast to her Southern roots as she travels the world to explore new possibilities. Britt is making an influence on everything haute cuisine and high fashion. She was born in Savannah and moved to Atlanta when she was young.
“My favorite memories from my childhood include boiled peanut stands and muscadine grapes in the summers. I think muscadine grapes may be the best grapes most people have never had the chance to taste. I also have very fond memories of Thanksgiving dinner and the days of prepping before it. The kitchen is abuzz with activity, so many amazing smells from cakes to pies and mac and cheese, and the warmth from the oven permeates the whole house. It was my favorite time of the year.”
Her family sparked her interest in the kitchen, learning family recipes and classic Southern “Soul Food” dishes while she watched cooking shows with Julia Child and Jacques Pepin. “They shaped how I cooked and advanced my knowledge of formal cooking techniques at a very young age. I love cooking the “classic way” and playing with fusion ideas,” shares Britt.
She would practice their French culinary techniques in a Southern, soulful fashion. “Because Southern cooking is tied to French cooking, I’m constantly playing with the usual southern ingredients and flavor profiles in elevated dishes,” shares Britt. Britt shared that she loved making French omelets — “It was one of the first dishes I learned to make when I was little. My dad loved his eggs just slightly under, and It grew on me as well. When I learned how to make a French omelet and how it’s supposed to be slightly custard-like in the middle, it reminded me of my dad and reinforced my obsession with eggs. I would make him one all the time!”
As she remained loyal to the art of cuisine, she also expanded upon her love for fashion in her later teens and into adulthood. Her fashion styling and photography career was a success as she worked for multiple fashion publications in New York and San Francisco. It was in San Francisco, the food capital of America, where she was inspired to reconsider a career in cooking. Rather than sacrificing one to the other, she decided to integrate the two passions, and thus, The Cook Wears Coco emerged.
Her latest ambition is to open the first Southern-style restaurant in Europe. She currently resides in Lisbon, Portugal, where she manages her lifestyle brand, The Cook Wears Coco, as she documents her travels and culinary expeditions. And while living away from home, she says that a peach dish always takes her back to life in Georgia. Britt said, “I’ve lived in many places in the US and abroad and have yet to find a peach that matches how incredible the peaches are in Georgia.”
When asked what ingredients invigorate her while exploring her new city? She enthusiastically said, “I love this question; I’m still trying to identify Portugal’s food identity… there’s a lot of salted cod, cream, and potatoes but I can’t put my finger on the specific ingredients that speak to Portugal’s authentic food culture just yet.”
Her distinct tastes have captured the attention of many, including the Food Network, who invited her to participate in their debut season of the competitive special, The Julia Child Challenge. Her display of modernized Southern style cooking perfected by French techniques and other worldly influences got her to the top four of the competition.
Britt shared that the dish that represents her is – Southern Influenced Duck Confit, pictured above. “This dish represents me so well because it’s a classic dish from Southern France that I married with an American South staple — Sweet Tea. I brine it in my special sweet tea brine, confit’d the duck, and then crisped it in the oven to finish. It’s so French but also reminds me slightly of great Southern barbecue somehow. A truly unique flavor and the texture is incredible. A friend from France says it’s in the top 3 Duck confit’s she’s ever had, and she’s had it a lot and hasn’t cared for it much!”
Her next feature will be an upcoming food and lifestyle mini-series, and in the meantime, she is being mentored under the guidance of New York Times Best Selling Author and James Beard Award finalist Cheryl Day. To learn more about Britt, follow her journey on Instagram at The Cook Wears Coco and The Julia Child Challenge. And what’s next for Britt? We should keep our eye out for an upcoming cookbook soon.