Britain’s love affair with fine dining and home cooking is the inspiration behind the UK’s leading award winning recipe site Great British Chefs, which provides food lovers everywhere with distinctive recipes, kitchen secrets, and how-to videos from the very best chefs working in Britain today, representing the full diversity of the culinary scene in Great Britain. Featuring signature dishes from award winning chefs such as Marcus Wareing, Martin Wishart and Nathan Outlaw, Great British Chefs gives home cooks the opportunity to recreate over 1000 incredible dishes by internationally renowned chefs in their very own kitchens.
Adding new recipes, new videos and new chefs on daily basis, Great British Chefs takes great pride in delivering high quality, multi-media content from real experts. With one of the most dynamic communities in the social media space, the website attracts over 350,000 unique monthly visitors, and its content is also available on a variety of mobile devices. UI Centric worked closely with Microsoft and Great British Chefs to develop an immersive and extensive Windows 8 application intended to become an indispensable kitchen utility, exciting its users about good food, while developing their appreciation for sourcing the best ingredients.
Our goal was to develop an application that was elegant, seamlessly functional, and offering the rich depth of content expected of the brand. We invested heavily in an extended wire-framing process, with a focus on clearly defining the user experience before moving forward to our design phase. The application puts an emphasis on discovery, using exceptional visuals presented via a simple and fluid user interface. Tiles featuring high-quality images, specially photographed for Great British Chefs, entice users to explore themed collections (chefs, recipes, ingredients, meats and spices etc), and by cooking technique or level of complexity, including professional level recipes. Searches can also be filtered by recipe type, from easy mid-week suppers to dinner party classics, or by variables such as individual course. Semantic zoom and snap view allow users to navigate between collections with ease.
Recipes can be explored in Overview or Cooking modes: Overview mode offers a brief summary of each recipe, including cooking times and key ingredients. Cooking mode takes the user on a step-by-step journey through the creation of a dish, with a complete list of ingredients and full instructions, viewable as headlines or as a page-per-step. Each recipe also features links to useful How-To video tutorials, enabling users to develop their skills while they cook. Featuring Metric and Imperial measurements for each recipe, the app even includes an integrated cooking timer.
The user journey moves beyond recipes and ingredients, with biographies of the Michelin starred chefs whose recipes are reproduced in the application, along with detailed information on their restaurants and dishes. Additional content includes numerous blogs and long-form articles on food and cooking, and an extensive selection of informative videos covering subjects as diverse as poaching an egg to butchering a quail. Users can bookmark their favourite recipes, and the intelligent UI will generate an interactive shopping list of ingredients. Users can peruse their virtual Shopping List by recipe, or in ‘Aisle’ mode – compiling all of their favourite recipes’ ingredients into one list. Items can be crossed off, recipes removed, shopping lists shared with other users, and there is even an option to email the ingredients to yourself for later reference. Recipes and shopping lists can also be printed, and video content played on another linked device. The Windows 8 Charm Bar offers users the ability to search the app for recipes and ingredients using key words, and the search will return video and related articles as well as recipes.