30 SEC­ONDS WITH Colin Starkey

Colin Starkey, ex­ec­u­tive head chef, Alder­ley Edge Ho­tel

Cheshire Life - - Gastro Gossip -

Who taught you to cook?

I spent a lot of time in the kitchen with my mum and nan, which I think helped me steer to­wards be­com­ing a chef. It is also why I am pas­sion­ate about teach­ing young peo­ple to cook. From pri­mary school age my own chil­dren cooked with me, and we saw this is an in­te­gral part of their devel­op­ment. Visit­ing schools and shar­ing my knowl­edge is a real joy. I am also work­ing with Whites Chef Academy at Mac­cles­field Col­lege to bring an ap­pren­tice into our team. Hope­fully to in­spire more young peo­ple to join the in­dus­try.

Also, my first cou­ple of po­si­tions at North­cote Manor with Nigel Ha­worth and Soughton Hall with Mark Fletcher ig­nited my pas­sion for great flavours and us­ing only the finest, fresh in­gre­di­ents.

What is your sig­na­ture dish?

Taking in­spi­ra­tion from sea­sonal pro­duce means that each week is dif­fer­ent, and each dish var­ied. For that rea­son, I pre­fer not to adopt one sig­na­ture dish.

What is your favourite in­gre­di­ent? Sea­son­ing – what­ever dish you are cre­at­ing, it en­hances the flavour.

If you were on death row what would you or­der for your last meal? That’s an easy one. My gran­dad’s freshly caught rain­bow trout served with brown bread and but­ter, fol­lowed by my nan’s ap­ple pie. Simple home cook­ing. What’s your pet hate in restau­rants? I have two. Mo­bile phones and peo­ple putting salt on their food be­fore tast­ing it.

Why should we love chefs?

A chef shows amaz­ing com­mit­ment and pas­sion to pro­duce qual­ity food for cus­tomers and give them an ex­pe­ri­ence they won’t for­get.

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