What’s the motivation behind your latest venture in Ludlow?
I’ve been cooking, running cafes and writing cookbooks for over 30 years. I love straightforward very tasty food and I love the enjoyment that customers get from eating in my cafes. We feel very lucky to have the space at the Mascall Centre and operate our popular ‘Click and Collect’ service. Our lovely little café has just a few tables but they’re well spaced and the walls are adorned with beautiful art from Nick Samsworth. We are only doing lunch at the moment, but I encourage people to book ahead.
Your latest signature dish is…
Not really a signature dish, but this tamarind and ginger chicken is a current favourite. This is lovely but comes out fairly brown so scatter the dish with plenty of chopped fresh coriander before serving.
Chef’s Note: This recipe is for 6 x chicken thighs/legs each weighing around 275g. Use a dish in which the chicken pieces fit snugly (I have a 28cm square baking dish which does the job) so that they effectively make a lid for the rice and prevent too much evaporation.
And, the kitchen gadget everyone needs?
A good and sharp cook’s knife and a good quality steel for sharpening
Three things we will always find in your cupboard are?
- Decent ordinary extra virgin olive oil
- Parmesan (or White Fox – from the Mousetrap in Ludlow)
What are the most important changes you have made to deal with COVID?
More widely spaced tables is the most significant thing. This is essential (far more important than masks) but obviously has a critical impact on the economics of running cafes and restaurants. These are challenging but also very exciting times.
Finally, is there anything else in the pipeline?
As well as having our current Bill’s Kitchen at the Mascall Centre in Ludlow and at All Saints Church in Hereford, I’m of course extremely excited about our upcoming venture at the Ludlow Assembly Rooms. Yes it is going to happen! No, I don’t know the date!