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ChefPaulFoster/©PFoster

THE GAME-BRITISH & SCOTTISH CHEFS: PAUL FOSTER

The Brits have been preparing for some time the after Gordon Ramsay and Marco Pierre White cuisine. Not that there is a british style but we can certainly say that the emerging chefs are pro-locavore and that they are sourcing the best products of the island of Albion. In the very cosmopolitan London, the influences of young chefs are many, which give them a unique culinary personality, but do not forget those who work in the countryside!

The rural Suffolk is the perfect place for Paul Foster to take the time to refine his cooking and develop a unique signature on the outside of London. In a short time, we can already say that he is actually doing the Tuddenham Mill (Boutique Hotel & Restaurant) a gastronomic destination in England.

Paul Foster completed his apprenticeship in famous restaurants (Le Manoir,WD-50, etc.) but it is truly as sous-chef at Sat Bains (his mentor) he learned the most and he developed his style. Foster’s cuisine is very personal, progressive and rooted in the British terroir (Suffolk country), and he is a fan of foraging. Certainly one of the best young English chefs of the moment and a perfect example of what Harold McGee said recently: ‘’Cooking is no longer national or traditional-it is now personal’’.

One of the chefs who will upsets the British cuisine in the coming years and Tuddenham Mill is (actually) in my Top -5- Fine dining in England!

 

 

Q+A WITH PAUL FOSTER (www.tuddenhammill.co.uk ):

1-(Scoffier) How do you explain the philosophy behind your cuisine at Tuddenham Mill and what is it main characteristics?

PFoster- The food is very natural and very British. My main focus is Purity of flavour. I look at every ingredient and think how can I best
extract it’s flavour. I don’t like manipulation of food, or dishes that are overworked. Like most chefs I am inspired by the greats but I leave it at
inspiration and never follow or copy trends. I always avoided the pointless ‘spheres’ ect. Things like that should be left to the people who do it really well. It is horrible to see concepts bastardised. I am happy to say I if you asked me to show you spherification then I wouldn’t know where to start, that should be left to places like el bulli as they do it very well.

2-(Scoffier) You are in the area of Suffolk. What are the benefits of working outside of London?

PFoster- When you are off the beaten track customers have to make a journey to dine with you. A journey brings with it different experiences and emotions. We have 15 stunning bedrooms, and 12 beautiful acres of land. Ultimately we want to make Tuddenham a food destination. But it is important to us that we give the guests that bit extra.

3-(Scoffier) Do you have a flavour or taste from your childhood that is again memorable?

PFoster- I grew up in pubs and one of the most memorable when I used to help my dad out in the cellar was malt, at the time I wasn’t aware of what it was, I just knew how good it smelt. It wasn’t till I started cooking and I smelt some malt extract It took me right back to childhood. I don’t use a huge amount in my cooking but I do make a malt bread which is now just over a year old and ageing very well indeed. The aroma when it is freshly baked is outstanding.

4-(Scoffier) Do you have a particular foods (or products) that you often use in your recipes?

PFoster- I cook with the seasons so certain items I won’t have on all year. I do have sea buckthorn on nearly all year round I am a huge fan of the native berry grown by the ocean.

5-(Scoffier) I had the chance to discuss with other talented chefs from England and several chefs talk to me of chef Sat Bains like an inspiration. You worked with him, is a mentor for you? What you have learned with him?

PFoster- A huge inspiration, his voice is always in my head. I use it as a tool to keep pushing myself. From Sat, as well as cooking techniques and philosophies I learned leadership, how to motivate and inspire people, and self discipline. Self discipline is very important in many ways
it’s about knowing when to stop if a dish is ready and not over working it. It is also about questioning everything you do, asking yourself is this good enough? Does it taste amazing? And if not you have to have the bollocks and discipline to start again.

6-(Scoffier) Foraging is very popular actually, you even organize days of foraging with *Miles Irving, a pioneer and expert in England. Why is it important in your cuisine?

PFoster- Foraging is huge at the moment, and it is very important to know what you are picking and using as there are some very deadly yet innocent looking plants out there. It is something I have always had an interest in. Right from the early days of just using wild garlic, plums, cherries, mushrooms, and nettles. I always wondered what else was out there to eat. Whilst at Sat Bains, I met Miles Irving and was impressed by his knowledge and passion. We worked with each other to giving advice on how we use the ingredients. After I had settled into Tuddenham Mill I organised a foraging walk with Miles and some of our customers. It was great to go on foot with Miles, his knowledge.

7-(Scoffier) How do you develop (your inspiration) your recipes and construct your Menu at Tuddenham Mill?

PFoster- The menus are gradually evolved. When an ingredient is coming into season, I will work on how to best extract it’s flavour the ingredients are celebrated on the menu untill the season starts to close all the time, I’m considering the replacements. I never switch off, I’m thinking of new dishes all the time, on holiday, when driving, when walking home from work after a long day, when I’m foraging and also when I’m sleepin

8-(Scoffier) Do you use some elements from new technology (sous-vide etc.) in your cooking techniques? If yes, which?

PFoster- I use technology where it enhances or promotes the ingredient. I use waterbaths, paco jet, ect. but a lot of my techniques are traditional, salting, smoking, curing, most of my fish is cooked classically in a pan. There is no point using equipment for the sake of it or because it is new and a gimmick. When you have a true understanding of the ingredients you are using only then you can decide the best way to cook it.

9-(Scoffier) Can you give us a detailed recipe (Signature dish or other) that is characterized the cuisine of Paul Foster and Tuddenham Mill?

PFoster- Recipe:Lamb rump and shoulder, Hogweed seed, Clams, Courgette, Yoghurt

10-(Scoffier) What are your goals (ambitions) as chef or for your restaurant? Do you think about write a book, others
restaurants?

PFoster- Owning my own restaurant is a massive ambition but a good grounding here at Tuddenham Mill is essential. I want to put the
tiny village of Tuddenham on the map. It is a great opportunity to make a name for myself and to boost the reputation of the Mill. A book is way off, I wouldn’t even consider that yet but would be amazing in the future.

RECIPE:  Lamb rump and shoulder, Hogweed seed, Clams, Courgette, Yoghurt

RecipeLamb/©PaulFoster

INGREDIENT & PROGRESSION RECIPE (Serves 4)

-2 lamb rumps

-1 lamb shoulder on the bone

-1 courgette

-1 lemon juiced

-4 pink fir apple potatoes

-200g palourde clams

-Teaspoon dried and ground hogweed seeds (foraged)

-100ml natural yoghurt

-200ml reduced brown chicken stock

-200g butter

-Salt

-Sunflower oil

1. Season the lamb shoulder and roast very slowly at 120C for 5 hours,
when cooked pull the meat off the bone, re-season and mix in around 100ml of
reduced brown chicken stock. Roll in cling film and refrigerate until needed.

2. Trim up the lamb rumps cut each into two vacuum pack and cook in
water bath at 56C for 1 1/2 hours.

3. Open up the clams over heat, chill and remove from the shells,
reserve in fridge until needed.

4. Slice the courgette length ways on a mandolin, season with sea salt
and a spoon of the lemon juice, leave in fridge for 1 hour.

5. Peel the pink fir potatoes place in a bag with 50g of the butter a
pinch salt and a pinch of hogweed seeds, vacuum pack and cook for 1 hour at 90C.

6. Brown 100g of the butter in a pan add a small amount of lemon juice
and 100ml of the chicken stock, keep warm.

7. When the lamb rump is cooked remove from the bag pat it dry and sear
the fat side in a pan with a spoon of the sunflower oil.

8. Warm the clams in the brown butter dressing, slice the shoulder and warm under the grill. Carve the lamb
rump, season the pink flesh with sea salt and a good pinch of ground hogweed seed.

9. Arrange the ingredients on the plate and spoon over the warm clams. Finish
with spoons of the natural yoghurt.

 

 

FURTHER INFORMATION

-Tuddenham Mill/Chef Paul Foster

High street

Tuddenham, Nr. NewMarket

Suffolk (UK)

IP28 6SQ

www.tuddenhammill.co.uk

www.paulfosterchef.com

PRESS/REVIEW

1. Review by Jay Rayner, The Observer (The Guardian), June 5th 2011

2. Acorn Award 2011-Paul Foster

3. Skinny Bib blog (Review), July 2011

3. Restaurant Sat Bains

4. Miles Irving, Forager company (UK)

Tous Droits Réservés. Copyright Scoffier ©2008-2011

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Chef Ben Greeno/© FoodsnobBlog

THE GAME-BRITISH & SCOTTISH CHEFS: BEN GREENO

The Brits have been preparing for some time the after Gordon Ramsay and Marco Pierre White cuisine. Not that there is a British style but we can certainly say that the emerging chefs are pro-locavore and that they are sourcing the best products of the island of Albion. In the very cosmopolitan London, the influences of young chefs are many, which give them a unique culinary personality.

Ben Greeno is a young and very talented chef with a mixed background composed of internships at Noma (Redzepi),MR (Mads Reflund), Paul Cunningham (The Paul) and with his mentor from UK, Sat Bains. With this pedigree Greeno is certainly one of the best chefs who work in a Pop-up restaurant concept!

Indeed, Chef Ben Greeno has decided to start Tudor Road to perfect his style, to devote himself to his passion and set up the embryo of his future restaurant. In a small kitchen very simple, he concocts a market cuisine highlighting the best of British’s terroir with the clean side of Danish’s influences.

A constantly evolving style. We hope a restaurant with more than 10 seats in the future!

Now (November 2011), chef of Momofuku Seiobo and former co-founder of the Young Turks  (James Lowe, Isaac McHale).

 

Q+A WITH BEN GREENO (http://bengreeno.wordpress.com/ ):

1-(Scoffier) How do you explain the philosophy behind your cuisine and what is it main characteristics?

BGreeno- The philosophy of my cooking is based on using the best ingredients I can find and treating them with the respect they deserve. My food is light and clean and I want people to walk away from the table comfortably without the feeling of being stuffed.

Hamashidish/© Foodsnob Blog

2-(Scoffier) Tudor Road is your first restaurant or concept. Can you describe Tudor Road? And it is the embryo of your future restaurant in 2011?

BGreeno- Tudor Road is something I was encouraged to do by Nuno (Mendes) from The Loft Project (+Viajante) after I had spent the 5 weeks cooking there. The original idea behind the space was to use it as a platform for finding a backer for a restaurant of my own, now things are moving in that direction.

3-(Scoffier) Do you have a mentor (chefs or anybody else) that inspires you in your cuisine?

BGreeno- In terms of mentors that would Sat Bains, I worked for him on and off over the last 9 years, he has been a massive influence on my cooking and way of thinking. I talk to him at least once a week, food, books or just general rubbish.

4-(Scoffier) I know that you have work with René Redzepi. Do you are part of the New Nordic Cuisine manifesto? If yes, are you as strict (just local products) that René Redzepi in your recipes?

BGreeno- Working for René was a massive learning curve. I had a fantastic time during my time in Copenhagen. It feels like home for me. I’m not part of the Nordic Cuisine manifesto, I’m in East London so it’s a little difficult. I still go out every day and pick herbs and plants from the surrounding area I’m pretty sure that is something I will always do.

5-(Scoffier) How do you develop (your inspiration) your recipes and construct your menu (Tudor Road)?

BGreeno- Inspiration comes from the places I have worked, eating out. At the moment I am eating a lot of Asian food and reading about that cuisine too, so the odd little influence is creeping in but nothing too strong, just as background flavors.

6-(Scoffier) I know that the chef Pascal Barbot (L’Astrance) take a lot of time choosing and picking his produces at the market. Do you spend as much of time to choose and pick your produces?

BGreeno- I pick all my products myself, I’m very lucky in only having to cook for 10 guests every night I have time to go to the market and talk to the guys with the produce. My friend Isaac (McHale) helps out with supplies too working with the guys from Chegworth on growing vegetables.

7-(Scoffier) Do you use some elements from molecular gastronomy or new technology in your cooking techniques? If yes, which?

BGreeno- I’m using a water bath for the low temp cooking but no molecular technique.

8-(Scoffier) Can you give us a detailed recipe (Signature dish or other) that is characterized the cuisine of Ben Greeno?

BGreeno- Recipe: Chicken + Hen Eggs

9-(Scoffier) What is your goal (ambitions) as chef or for your future restaurant (your concept)?

BGreeno- The short term goal is doing the kind of food I’m doing but for more people in a proper restaurant! Next year is looking pretty exciting we will see where that takes me.

 

RECIPE: Chicken + Hen Eggs

  

Ingredients & Progression Recipe

-4 hen eggs slow cooked at 64 degrees for 60 minutes

-8 chicken hearts

-8 chicken wings

-4 pickled walnuts

-4 pieces of chicken skin

-8 chicken gizzards

-200g chicken glaze

-20g pickled elderberries

-Mushrooms

-500ml chicken stock

-50g butter

-Crispy bread

-Salt and pepper

1. Braise the chicken wings in the stock and half the butter for approx 45 minutes at 160 until tender, leave to cool until you can handle them and pull the bones out carefully. Set aside.

2. Bake the chicken skin for 25 min. at 180, until crispy.

3. Boil the gizzards for 15 minutes so they soften and trim the bottoms off the hearts.

4. Slice the pickled walnuts into 3.

5. To serve, re-heat the chicken wings in a little of the stock, melt the butter in a frying pan, when it is foaming add the hearts and gizzards and mushrooms, cook for about 2-3 minutes until golden, melt the chicken glaze add the elderberries.

6. Place the walnut, wings, gizzards, heart and mushrooms in the middle of a deep bowl, add the egg on top, sauce the dish with the chicken glaze then add on the chicken skin and crispy skin.

 

FURTHER INFORMATION:

-Momofuku Seiobo/Chef Ben Greeno

Level G, The Star

80 Pyrmont Street, Pyrmont

NSW 2009

http://www.momofuku.com/restaurants/seiobo/bios/

http://bengreeno.wordpress.com/

 

-Event(s):

1. Young Turks Dinner, The Hempel Hotel, Sunday 19 December 2010, http://youngturksblog.com/

2. The Loft Project, February 3, 2010, http://www.theloftproject.co.uk/news/

 

Review(s):

1. (Review) Momofuku Seiobo by Terry Durack, Nov. 8 2011

2. Gourmet Traveller blogOctober 4, 2010, http://gourmettraveller.wordpress.com/2010/10/04/tudor-road/

3. London’s Pop-Up Restaurants… by Oliver Strand, NY Times, October 5, 2010, http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/06/dining/06london.html

 

Tous droits réservés. Copyright Scoffier © 2008-2011

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