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Chef Q&A: Ken Ifould, The Red Cow, Chrishall

PUBLISHED: 12:53 26 August 2014 | UPDATED: 13:12 26 August 2014

Ken Ifould, head chef, The Red Cow, Chrishall, near Royston

Ken Ifould, head chef, The Red Cow, Chrishall, near Royston

Archant

The head chef gives an insight into his kitchen

Pies are a speciality at The Red Cow, ChrishallPies are a speciality at The Red Cow, Chrishall

Describe your style I try to have an even spread of dishes, with as much choice as possible, so I create a range of vegetarian, fish and red and white meat dishes, driven by what I enjoy myself.

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What local suppliers do you use? We use a supplier called Fieldgate Nurseries in Meldreth. They provide us with our fruit and vegetables - using locally-sourced produce wherever possible.

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Red Cow, ChrishallRed Cow, Chrishall

Which menu dish do you most enjoy preparing? I enjoy making the pies on our menu. The flavours change regularly and I feel very fulfilled when they are finished.

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What ingredient is most important to your cooking? All ingredients are important to me.

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What has been your best culinary idea? At a previous restaurant I worked in we had interesting ice cream flavours. There were a couple of Indian chefs working there who used to make chai tea and we used this to make a lovely ice cream.

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Who did you train under and what did they teach you? I didn’t learn that much in the first few years, but then I travelled to Australia and threw myself in at the deep end to learn more. All the best chefs that I have worked under work well and calmly under pressure. I have always tried to emulate this.

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What’s your prediction for the next food trend? With so much going on in Brazil with the World Cup, I imagine people will return home with a love of the food out there. The Brazilians have some imaginative ways to serve their fantastic beef for example.

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Quick grill>>>

What’s in your fridge at home? All the basics: milk, cream, eggs, fresh vegetables and fruit; a lot of sandwich fillings; and of course a cold beer that may be needed after a long day at work!

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Favourite quick meal? I love pasta, especially the ready to go tortellini that is fresh, cooks in minutes, and is lovely drizzled in good quality olive oil and sea salt.

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Top three tips for amateur chefs? Cook slowly and take your time, it will taste better in the end. Taste the food as you go. Try everything you cook.

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Best cookbook? Best-Ever Pastry Cookbook by Catherine Atkinson. This has taught me the fundamentals of pastry cooking.

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