April Bloomfield: 'If you think you've added enough butter, just add a bit more'

 

My earliest food memory… Waking up on a cold frosty morning at my Nan's house and my Grandad cooking porridge on the hob with milk and the tiniest bit of sugar melted on top. Then he'd pour the cold milk around the bowl so it would set like custard. It's the best start to the day for energy. It's better than Red Bull – porridge gives you wings.

My store-cupboard essentials… Capers, anchovies, tomatoes, pasta, olive oil and [an assortment of] vinegars. I try to cook once a week at home but it's hard when you're hectic at work. This weekend I went hiking an hour-and-a-half away from [my home in] New York and I poached a big chicken with daikon and carrots and chilli and made this relish with dill, parsley and cornichons.

My favourite cookbook… I like cookbooks that tell stories and take you on a journey, such as Honey From a Weed by Patience Gray. She has this recipe for fish soup which starts off by saying, "If you want to make this fish soup you should take a flight to Barcelona"; it's full of humour like that. I also love The Charcuterie Cookbook by Michael Ruhlman and Roast Chicken and Other Stories by Simon Hopkinson.

The kitchen appliance I couldn't live without… A pestle and mortar or mortar and pestle. I can't remember how you say it. I love to be able to grind fresh spices myself and it's perfect for pounding the stuff in small batches. It's the original kitchen gadget and still the best.

My favourite food shop… Borough Market if I'm in England, and if I'm in the countryside I love stopping at local farms to see what they've got; I'll pick up bread, eggs, pork products and whatever vegetables are in season. In New York, I love the Greenmarket in Union Square and Kalustyan's on 28th and Lexington: it's this huge Indian spice shop, which has vinegars and walls of spices from all over the world, like 10 different varieties of peppercorns. You can spend a good hour wandering the aisles there.

My favourite restaurant… I just went to Chicken Shop in London and I enjoyed that, it's a fun place. I also love Il Mulino in New York – it's rustic, casual, comfortable and consistent. The staff are nice but not overbearing and it's just a really nice place to go and eat.

My dream dining companion… No one specific, just anyone with a sense of humour and great conversation who likes a good drink and is into their food.

My desert-island dish… Just an abundance of veggies – fennel, celeriac, carrots, potatoes, Brussels sprouts and peas. All roasted in pork fat if I could find some free-roaming pigs somewhere.

The weirdest thing I've ever eaten… Probably a cricket. We were throwing a party for a member of staff in this Mexican restaurant in SoHo in New York and they brought a big bowl of crickets out. They were slightly smoky and crunchy. It was like chewing on a cigarette. It was kind of gnarly.

My comfort food… I like eating anything soft and simple, such as mashed potatoes. I need them to be creamy so you have to use lots of butter and milk. If you think you've added enough butter, just add a bit more!

My guilty pleasure… I love chocolate. I try moderation but people often give me boxes of chocolates. What I do now is hand them around to everyone first so there's less left for me.

My tipple of choice… I love IPA [India Pale Ale], and I'm also partial to an Old Fashioned from time to time.

Born in Birmingham, April Bloomfield is the executive chef and co-owner of New York's Michelin-starred Spotted Pig as well as the city's Breslin and John Dory restaurants. Her book, 'A Girl and Her Pig' is out now (Canongate, £25)

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookA delicious collection of 50 meaty main courses
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Food & Drink

    Guru Careers: Product Manager / Product Marketing Manager / Product Owner

    COMPETITIVE: Guru Careers: A Product Manager / Product Owner is required to jo...

    Guru Careers: Carpenter / Maintenance Operator

    £25k plus Benefits: Guru Careers: A Carpenter and Maintenance Operator is need...

    Recruitment Genius: Visitor Experience Coordinator

    £17600 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This museum cares for one of the largest...

    Recruitment Genius: Experienced PSV Coach & Minibus Drivers

    £12500 - £24500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Drivers wanted for a family run...

    Day In a Page

    Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... for the fourth time

    Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... again

    I was once told that intelligence services declare their enemies dead to provoke them into popping up their heads and revealing their location, says Robert Fisk
    Margaret Attwood on climate change: 'Time is running out for our fragile, Goldilocks planet'

    Margaret Attwood on climate change

    The author looks back on what she wrote about oil in 2009, and reflects on how the conversation has changed in a mere six years
    New Dr Seuss manuscript discovered: What Pet Should I Get? goes on sale this week

    New Dr Seuss manuscript discovered

    What Pet Should I Get? goes on sale this week
    Oculus Rift and the lonely cartoon hedgehog who could become the first ever virtual reality movie star

    The cartoon hedgehog leading the way into a whole new reality

    Virtual reality is the 'next chapter' of entertainment. Tim Walker gives it a try
    Ants have unique ability to switch between individual and collective action, says study

    Secrets of ants' teamwork revealed

    The insects have an almost unique ability to switch between individual and collective action
    Donovan interview: The singer is releasing a greatest hits album to mark his 50th year in folk

    Donovan marks his 50th year in folk

    The singer tells Nick Duerden about receiving death threats, why the world is 'mentally ill', and how he can write a song about anything, from ecology to crumpets
    Let's Race simulator: Ultra-realistic technology recreates thrill of the Formula One circuit

    Simulator recreates thrill of F1 circuit

    Rory Buckeridge gets behind the wheel and explains how it works
    Twitter accused of 'Facebookisation' over plans to overhaul reverse-chronological timeline

    Twitter accused of 'Facebookisation'

    Facebook exasperates its users by deciding which posts they can and can’t see. So why has Twitter announced plans to do the same?
    Jane Birkin asks Hermès to rename bag - but what else could the fashion house call it?

    Jane Birkin asks Hermès to rename bag

    The star was shocked by a Peta investigation into the exotic skins trade
    10 best waterproof mascaras

    Whatever the weather: 10 best waterproof mascaras

    We found lash-enhancing beauties that won’t budge no matter what you throw at them
    Diego Costa biography: Chelsea striker's route to the top - from those who shared his journey

    Diego Costa: I go to war. You come with me...

    Chelsea's rampaging striker had to fight his way from a poor city in Brazil to life at the top of the Premier League. A new book speaks to those who shared his journey
    Ashes 2015: England show the mettle to strike back hard in third Test

    England show the mettle to strike back hard in third Test

    The biggest problem facing them in Birmingham was the recovery of the zeitgeist that drained so quickly under the weight of Australian runs at Lord's, says Kevin Garside
    Women's Open 2015: Charley Hull - 'I know I'm a good golfer but I'm also just a person'

    Charley Hull: 'I know I'm a good golfer but I'm also just a person'

    British teen keeps her feet on ground ahead of Women's Open
    Turkey's conflict with Kurdish guerrillas in Iraq can benefit Isis in Syria

    Turkey's conflict with Kurdish guerrillas in Iraq can benefit Isis in Syria

    Turkish President Erdogan could benefit politically from the targeting of the PKK, says Patrick Cockburn
    Yvette Cooper: Our choice is years of Tory rule under Jeremy Corbyn or a return to a Labour government

    Our choice is years of Tory rule under Corbyn or a return to a Labour government

    Yvette Cooper urged Labour members to 'get serious' about the next general election rather than become 'a protest movement'