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Great British Menu 2019 Chefs – Andrew Sheridan

This year, Andrew Sheridan takes on the Great British Menu, cooking and competing through heats in the London & South East region to earn the right to cook at an exquisite banquet, held at – Abbie Road Studios. With Phil Howard.  judging the dishes being served – They will be honouring the stars and heroes of the music industry from the 60’s to the present day.

Andrew is the current head chef of The Stargazy Inn.

We spoke to Chef Andrew to find out more about her experience on the BBC2 show…

How do you look back on the experience?

It was both the hardest and the best thing I have ever done in my life. It proved to me that I’ve still got what it takes to be truly creative in the kitchen and took me straight back to my roots. At Stargazy Inn I run a team of chefs, on Great British Menu I am Head Chef, Sous Chef and Commis all at the same time!

 

Is there a way to handle the criticism from the judges?

It’s great getting feedback on your dishes from the other chefs, but of course, what really matters is what the judges think! It’s a gruelling process going through that and waiting for their response.
I barely slept a wink the whole week we were filming!

 

What is the atmosphere like in the kitchen?

I met some amazing people and it has also made me release how far I have come in my career. Being a chef can be lonely sometimes, we’re all so busy in our own kitchens that we don’t get out often enough to meet and talk to each other. Being part of the Great British Menu is a brilliant opportunity to spend time with other amazing chefs, to be inspired by each and build strong friendships.

 

This year’s theme is celebrating Britains extraordinary contribution to pop music – What is your approach to the imagination & creation to your dishes?

The brief to create dishes to celebrate Britain’s continuing musical success was a lot easier than last year’s (to celebrate the NHS), because music and food have so much in common. I found lots of strong connections from music that inspired my dishes.

 

What does the theme mean to you and what would it meant for you to cook at the banquet?

As I was representing Wales, where I grew up and have worked most of my life, two of my dishes were inspired by great Welsh artists – Tom Jones of course, and Shirley Bassey’s. As a kid I was a huge James Bond fan, and Shirley Bassey’s Goldfinger has got to be the most iconic Bond track of all time!
My other inspirations also came from my childhood and younger years – nipping across to the chippy over the road to get fish & chips to watch Top of the Pops every Friday evening with by brother and my teens spent going out with mates and listening to Oasis on repeat!

 

What was the best part during your time on the Great British Menu so far?

All of it! It was one of the hardest things I have ever done and the most enjoyable.

 

Were there any tough situations during your time on the Great British Menu?

Being judged by my fellow chefs. It’s such a critical profession and when you have spent months creating dishes and to get good feedback from the chefs your competing against means a great deal.

 

Would you take part again if the opportunity was to come around & would there be anything you would change?

If I was offered the opportunity – yes without hesitation! It’s just the kind of person I am – ambitious and competitive, I love the pressure!

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