Meet the Cook for Good team

Our team are a committed bunch, who share a love of food and a determination to use it to change lives for the better. We’re mainly based at the community kitchen, so please pop in and say hello if you’re passing by.

The Cook For Good Chefs

We have a brilliant team of chefs, who facilitate our community and corporate events

Robinne Collie Headshot

Robinne Collie

Co-founder and Events Director

Robinne has spent more than 15 years in the kitchen (metaphorically, that is), running a cooking-focused teambuilding and events business, and teaching kitchen skills to client groups of all shapes and sizes. She tackled the pandemic in true foodie style by running a soup kitchen, which supported 40 families. Robinne has been known to whip up a four course meal in the time it takes to watch an episode of Masterchef.

​Secret cooking tip

“Avocado goes black once it’s been cut. So to keep homemade guacamole green for up to 24 hours, just pop it in a jam jar, smooth off the top with the back of a spoon, then pour a thin layer of water on the top and put the lid on.”

Favourite meal

“I enjoy putting unusual ingredients together; the odder they sound, the better they taste. Marmite and avocado on sourdough is my go-to lunch. I also love coriander, even though it tastes a bit like dishwasher liquid (check it out, it’s true).”

Karen Mattison Headshot

Karen Mattison

Co-founder and CEO

Karen set up Timewise and Women Like Us, two award-winning social enterprises focused on opening up opportunities for all through part-time and flexible working. She loves all things foodie, especially kitchen gadgets, and shares her favourite recipes with anyone who will listen. Karen responded to the pandemic by creating a chicken soup delivery service for anyone with symptoms, secretly believing that it has medicinal properties.

​Secret cooking tip

“An electric pressure cooker is a brilliant timesaver; it will cook a whole meal in one pot. From simple soups to more complex dishes like pasta and paella, you’ll get all the flavour with much less hassle and virtually no washing up.”

Favourite meal

“Hardest question ever…and one I think about A LOT. It would have to be either an ultimate cheese toastie – two types of cheese, onion, chutney, mayo, tomato – or a Thai inspired salad with tons of coriander and sesame dressing.”

Martha Ahmet Headshot

Martha Ahmet

Community Coordinator

Prior to joining Cook for Good, Martha worked for Women Like Us and Timewise. She spent 10 years as an Islington-based employability coach, providing information and guidance to help lone mothers back into work. Born in Spain, she moved to the UK aged eight, but has never lost her passion for her native food; as well as teaching her children to speak the Spanish language, she also encouraged them to learn how to cook Spanish-style.

​Secret cooking tip

“Like all Spaniards, I believe a drop of wine improves the flavour of pretty much every savoury dish you could think of. (I mean adding it into the cooking, not drinking it, though I’ve been known to do both).”

Favourite meal

“There’s nothing like a marisco, a traditional Spanish seafood platter including oysters, clams, prawns and calamari. Add a squeeze of lemon juice and bring the sea to your mouth.”

Cathy Halstead Headshot

Cathy Halstead

Comms and Content Manager

Cathy is an experienced copywriter and comms manager, with 15 years experience of finding the right words for companies of all shapes and sizes. She also co-founded a community school to address a lack of non-selective provision in her local area. Cathy’s children are brutally clear that she isn’t as good a cook as her husband, so she’s hoping to pick up some new tips and recipes from the Cook for Good team.

​Secret cooking tip

“I recently discovered ketjap manis (not to be confused with ketchup). It’s a sweet soy sauce that adds a fantastic flavour to pan-Asian rice and noodle dishes, and makes people think I’m a better cook than I actually am.”

Favourite meal

“I love anything with a sweet and sour combo, such as fruit in a salad or mango chutney with my curry. And I would eat a chicken Nasi Goreng for dinner every single day if I was allowed to (unfortunately I'm not).”

Poornima Kirloskar-Saini

Ops & Community Programmes Director

Originally an archaeologist, Poornima pivoted into the social enterprise sphere in 2006, working in a range of roles including operations and programme management. She also runs her own not-for-profit, Kundakala, which is teaching ethnic minority women how to tailor clothes. Poornima’s cooking skills are so legendary that she catered staff parties in a previous role, with colleagues fighting to host so they could bagsie the leftovers.

​Secret cooking tip

“Don’t be a slave to your recipe books. Use whatever you’ve got in the fridge, play around with ingredients and methods, and above all relax and enjoy it. In my kitchen, no dish tastes the same twice, and that’s the way I like it.”

Favourite meal

“Dal rice is the first solid food I was ever given, and it’s still the meal I go to when I need comfort; it’s like it’s wired into my DNA. It doesn’t need embellishing; just some dal, some rice and a drizzle of ghee is enough to make the world better.”

Tom Kedge

Pantry Manager

Tom is the power behind the Pantry, working with suppliers and volunteers to make sure everything is ready for our Thursday shoppers. He brings us bags of experience in the not-for-profit food sector, having led kitchen sessions at Food Cycle for many years. Tom works for us for four days each week, and spends his fifth day at Be Enriched, another community dining charity working to tackle food insecurity and social isolation.

​Secret cooking tip

“If you whisk up the water from a tin of chickpeas (known as aquafaba) for about 15 minutes, it creates a fluffy, mousse-like texture. Then all you need to do is add a bit of melted chocolate and you’ll have a delicious chocolate mousse.”

Favourite meal

“I currently live in Brixton, where I am surrounded by some of the most amazing Caribbean food every time I step outside. My favourite dish is jerk jackfruit stew with rice and peas – an amazing meal that tastes as good as it smells.”

Join our team

Want to be part of the Cook for Good team? We’re entering an exciting new phase of our story, and we need some exceptional people to help bring our plans to life.

We’re not currently recruiting, but may be advertising further opportunities in the next few months.

Follow us on social media to stay in the loop, or email your CV to