Maestre marvels in Maleny
Charismatic Spanish chef Miguel Maestre heads to Maleny on the Sunshine Coast on this week’s episode of The Living Room. Ahead of the show he shares his thoughts on the trip, his favourite foods and more
Q: When you were a child, back home in Spain, what was your favourite meal and who would cook it for you?
A: I loved whatever my mum cooked, but I must say she did the most amazing paella. I learnt a lot from my mum and she was a big reason I chose to become a chef.
Q: What’s your favourite food indulgence?
A: My favourite food indulgence is churros with chocolate sauce – I don’t think anyone would be able to resist, even Gringo (co-star Chris Brown) with his sugar-free diet.
Q: Do you have a food you really can’t bear to eat?
A: I don’t really have a food that I don’t like, but I do have a pet hate when foods are paired together that aren’t meant to be together. Like strawberries on cheese platters, I don’t think strawberries belong there at all!
Q: In this week’s episode of The Living Room, you visit Maleny on the Sunshine Coast and learn the secrets of making buffalo mozzarella. Was it your first trip to Maleny, and what did you think of the area?
A: This was my very first time in beautiful Maleny, it was so green and the town is really trendy. We have also done other stories on The Living Room nearby in Kingaroy. Queensland is great!
Q: What’s the funniest thing that’s happened to you while working on The Living Room?
A: Where do I start, there have been so many funny moments. To name a few – the time Gringo and I competed in a bobsled competition in Canada, in full lycra. Or when we trained to become a Canadian Rocky Mountaineer or swam with five great white sharks in South Africa. They were all amazing experiences that were very funny at the same time.
Q: You’ve worked on a few TV shows before. What do you enjoy most about working on this program? A: The chemistry that Baz, Gringo, Amanda and I share is incredible. We are genuinely best friends and going to work and seeing them is always the highlight of my day.
Q: We’re coming up to summer, what seasonal produce are you most looking forward to eating and cooking with?
A: Queensland is the home of tomatoes and I can’t wait to cook with them this summer. I love all the different types of tomato – heirloom, green zebras, black Russians – they make a delicious tomato salad, stuffed tomato recipe, Napoli sauce or fantastic bloody Mary drink, which are all great for summer.
Q: You’ve already written two cookbooks – Miguel’s Tapas and Spanish Cooking – do you have plans for another one?
A: I would love to do another book, I have been working on a little surprise that I can’t reveal much about. Watch this space!
Q: If you knew it was your last meal, what would you request?
A: For my last meal, I would have a plate of jamon iberico or otherwise known as Spanish ham, by itself with really nice, freshly made sourdough with Spanish olive oil on the side. Delicious!
SAY CHEESE: Chef Miguel Maestre shows off the tomato and mozzarella salad with a balsamic reduction that he whips up on this week’s episode of The Living Room.