Meet the Top Chefs on the Menu at BBC Good Food Show Northern Ireland

BBC Good Food Northern ireland

For the first time, the ultimate day out for food lovers, the BBC Good Food Show, is coming to Northern Ireland.

Taking over the food-loving city of Belfast this October 14th to 16th, BBC Good Food Show Northern Ireland will give serious foodies the chance to take a seat in front of a host of leading chefs, who will be cooking live in the Supertheatre; sharing their prized recipes, and top culinary tips.

Visitors to the Belfast Waterfront venue will also get the chance delve into the wealth of fantastic produce that Northern Ireland has to offer, taste testing their way around an amazing line up of food and drink producers in the Food NI Pavilion, Producers’ Village, and the Tasting Theatre.

To get a flavour of what’s to come, we poised 5 questions to some of the most celebrated chefs appearing at the Show: the charming James Martin, the esteemed Paul Rankin, and the cheeky Hairy Bikers.

JAMES MARTIN

James Martin BBC Good Food Show

For James Martin, a chef’s life was almost a given. Forever getting under his father’s feet as he ran the kitchens of Castle Howard stately home in Yorkshire, when James was only 12 he had already cooked for the Queen Mother on her visit there. He went onto chef training college, where his talent was soon noticed by Antony Worrall Thompson, who brought James to London to work, and by age 22, he was head chef of Hotel and Bistro du Vin in Winchester.

He became a familiar face on our screens in 1996 as a regular on Ready Steady Cook, and is best known for his time on BBC’s Saturday Kitchen, which he presented for ten years up until this year.

What is your favourite dish to cook?

Sunday Lunch.

What is your top tip for festive cooking?

Preparation is the key as most people do not prepare before hand.

What is your most treasured item in the kitchen?

My stove, a hand-built French Stove.

What new ingredient or ingredients are you inspired by right now?

Game, as the season is just starting, and I’m backwards and forwards filming in France at the moment, so all the french food I’m finding out about too.

James will be will be at the Show on Sunday 16th October. He will be cooking live in the Supertheatre, taking part in Q&A’s on the Interview Stage, and doing book signings with Eason.

PAUL RANKIN

Paul Rankin BBC Good Food Show

Paul Rankin is probably best known as one of the regular chefs on Ready Steady Cook. Regularly sharing the stove with his wife Jeanne, they worked alongside each other throughout the years including at Le Gavroche, the Roux brothers’ restaurant in London. When the couple returned to Belfast, they set up Roscoff, the restaurant that won Northern Ireland its first Michelin star, and retained it for eight consecutive years.

At its peak, the Rankin Group comprised 15 food businesses, but now, after 30 years cooking Paul is enjoying taking a break from the kitchen; getting the chance to travel, do TV work, and to speak at events like BBC Good Food.

What is your favourite dish to cook?

I’ve never been big on signature dishes or favourite foods. There’s such an infinite amount of wonderful ingredients and eating occasions how I possibly choose?! However the dish I guess I cook most is my mother’s chicken barley and parsley broth. I guess it’s just in my DNA.

What is your top tip for festive cooking?

Write lists! I guess what I’m saying is get organised, and for me that’s all about writing good lists. Try to start early with your menu and dishes. Then, from there your time planner; then your shopping lists; then your sundries list ( table decorations,napkins, candles etc); then your cooking days or evenings etc. You get the idea … write lists!

What is your most treasured item in the kitchen?

Phew! An impossible question! It’s like choosing your favourite child. But, currently it’s my 8 inch Kin kitchen knife. Go buy one at the show, I promise it won’t let you down!

What are you most looking forward to about the BBC Good Food Shows?

Apart from catching up with mates it’s about the “foodie fizz”. There’s always so much good grub. From new producers to old favourites, and there’s always loads of chef stuff: pots, pans, knives ,gadgets. I love it.

What new ingredient or ingredients are you inspired by right now?

I’m a bit ‘bah humbug’ about new ingredients, I kind of reckon if they were any good we would’ve been using them ages ago. An ingredient I’ve been using a lot lately is sauerkraut though. It’s very handy and versatile, and is great as a kind of pickle garnish, great in salads, and of course with sausages, ham, or pork chops.

Paul will be at the Show on both the 15th and 16th of October. He will be cooking live in the Supertheatre, and taking part in Q&A’s on the Interview Stage.

THE HAIRY BIKERS

The Hairy Bikers BBC Good Food Show

The down to earth, food-loving duo, the Hairy Bikers, a.k.a Si King and Dave Myers, are among our best-loved TV chefs. Cooking together for more than twenty years, the pair first met on the set of a TV drama where Si was working behind the scenes as a first assistant director, and Dave as a BBC make-up artist specialising in prosthetics.

The cooks first appeared in front of the camera together in Portugal, where they began their Hairy Bikers series. Since then, they’ve travelled to destinations such as Namibia, India, Vietnam, Argentina, Mexico and Ireland too in their quest to seek out new dishes from around the globe.

What is your favourite dish to cook?

Our favourite dish to cook is seafood of any description. Dave’s sea bass with Lobster sauce is always a favourite, Si is a monster with a mollusc!

What is your top tip for festive cooking?

The two great tips for festive cooking is first it’s a special occasion so source your ingredients well, if you do good shopping you are 95 per cent there. The Good Food Show is the best place to start. Secondly, preparation is key. Get yourself sorted, we write out a plan and tick off as we go. And thirdly, as has happened to us both, don’t get too tipsy to cook!

What is your most treasured item in the kitchen?

Dave: my most treasured item is my mother’s Yorkshire pudding tin, it makes magic puds every time … and yes even with Christmas dinner. Si’s is his knives, I reckon, he is a brilliant butcher. He has choppers in the garage and in the Kitchen.

What are you most looking forward to about the BBC Good Food Shows?

What we most look forward to about the BBC Good Food Shows is meeting up with old mates and seeing the people who enjoy our shows. There really is no buzz like the super theatre when it is full.

What new ingredient or ingredients are you inspired by right now?

Dave: I am inspired at the moment by Swiss chard. I have loads and loads from the garden and am actually having a Swiss chard and chicken risotto for supper tonight. We also bought three kilos of plain and flavoured Tahini from Jerusalem when we were filming earlier this year. It is going in everything from salads to dips.

The Hairy Bikers will be at the Show on Saturday 15th October. They will be cooking live in the Supertheatre, taking part in Q&A’s on the Interview Stage, and doing book signings with Eason.

 

 

For more information on the BBC Good Food Show Northern Ireland visit: www.bbcgoodfoodshownorthernireland.com.

INTERVIEW BY ERICA BRACKEN

Erica Bracken Erica grew up with a baker and confectioner for a father, and a mother with an instinct and love for good food. It is little wonder then that, after completing a law, she went on to do a Masters in Food Business at UCC. With a consuming passion for all things food, nutrition and wellness, working with TheTaste is a perfect fit for Erica; allowing her to learn and experience every aspect of the food world meeting its characters and influencers along the way.

Erica Bracken  Erica Bracken

 

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