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

Isis Town and Country - - Life | Easy Eating - Jen Gour­ley jen.gour­ley@apn.com.au

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!

PHOTO: NET­WORK TEN

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.

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