People always ask me, or any chef I would imagine, if I do the cooking at home and will I be cooking Easter lunch? My response is always the same, “When I can!” Now that basically boils down to weekends and holidays, so when it comes to Easter, I really do look forward to cooking in my own home.
As I am used to cooking in stainless steel boxes with all the gadgets and gizmos one could ever want, and teams of chefs lined up taking on a one hundred and one tasks to get to a final result. At home this just doesn’t happen. Actually quite the opposite, as there are always a couple of small children hanging off me or throwing a solid object of some description in my general direction. So when I cook at home it has to be simple to prepare and easy to serve, but never compromising on flavour!
The best and most logical place to start is with the ingredients you use. If you start with the best you can afford then you will naturally end up with a more delicious dish at the end. Sustainability is one of bartlett mitchell key values and I practice what I preach! Take your time with this, use local as much as possible, vegetables shouldn’t be long out of the ground, or off of the tree. Shape and size doesn’t matter, only quality. Meat should be ethically raised and from a reputable butcher.
Easter Lunch Menu
Menu choice is so important and a key thing is not to do too much! Do a few things extremely well rather than a lot of things average. Have a look at my Easter menu along with timing planner. These are quick simple dishes that will impress and give you time to spend with your loved ones and not be tearing around in a clutter of pots and pans and a counter top slowly becoming more saturated with wine and sweat.
All the P’s
We chefs have a little saying, proper preparation and planning prevents a poor performance. AKA all the P’s! Getting ahead is key to a relaxed meal, no matter how big or small your guest list is. I always have the dessert course completed the night before just waiting to be finished off and basic vegetable preparation done with things open and out of packets ready to be used.
And always keep in mind that cooking for friends and family should be fun, so have fun.
My top tips for Easter and just life in general.
- Use the best ingredients you can afford, it matters.
- Taste, taste, taste! All the way through your cooking, not just at the end.
- Cook in as much cast iron as possible, it make everything look awesome and I swear, taste better.
- Prepare as much as you can the day before.
- Let everything rest and relax, not just meat!
- Warm your plates! Basic. but I know loads of people don’t. Again it makes a difference.
- Don’t over think it! Cooking is from the heart so just let it be natural.