Six stellar chefs from UK, Netherlands set to inspire at The London Produce Show

Six stellar chefs from UK, Netherlands set to inspire at The London Produce Show

Gill McShane


Six top chefs working in the UK and the Netherlands have been confirmed for the hugely popular Chef Demonstration Kitchen at The London Produce Show and Conference 2018 (LPS18). Hailing from a broad background of culinary disciplines, the carefully selected group of international chefs will demonstrate how they are placing fresh fruits and vegetables at the heart of a diverse range of menu styles.

The lineup for 2018 includes: Tom Cenci, executive chef at Duck & Waffle in London; Dr Rupy Aujla, founder of The Doctor’s Kitchen; Carlos Martínez, group head chef at Chucs Restaurants; Robert Ortiz, executive chef at Peruvian restaurants LIMA Fitzrovia and LIMA Floral; celebrity chef Dipna Anand, owner of the recently-opened Dip in Brilliant Punjabi restaurant in London; and Dutch chef Christian Weij from Puur-e in the Netherlands.

International Chef Consultant Peter Gorton will host the LPS18 Chef Demonstration Kitchen as its engaging compere for the fifth consecutive year of the show. Running concurrently to the LPS18 trade exhibition, the Chef Demonstration Kitchen will use many of the fresh fruits and vegetables that attendees can see and source on the show floor.

Charged with inspiring others to get more produce on plates, the six dynamic chefs will devise special recipes for the event in which fresh fruits and vegetables are the centrepiece. On the day, each chef will spend half an hour showcasing a variety of fresh produce ingredients, cooking styles and culinary trends as they demonstrate their unique recipes for the audience to taste.

Christian Weij

Kicking off the day will be Dutch chef Christian Weij, sponsored by the Dutch Embassy in London. The food designer, fermentation specialist and owner of Puur-e, an organic and local food catering company in the Netherlands, will be raising awareness of the popular Dutch Cuisine movement, which has gained the backing of numerous chefs in the Netherlands.

The movement is designed to promote Dutch cuisine on an international scale, while simultaneously encouraging people to eat healthier. At the heart of the concept is the 80-20 principle – to create meals that comprise 80% vegetables and only 20% meat or fish, as well as 80% seasonal and local ingredients.

Tom Cenci

Following Weij in the kitchen will be Tom Cenci, the executive chef at Duck & Waffle – London’s first upscale all-day dining restaurant, located on the 40th floor of 110 Bishopsgate, one of the tallest buildings in the capital.

Cenci will showcase some of the fresh produce range supplied by LPS18 sponsor Mudwalls Farm, a family-run grower-distributor of apples, plums and a wide range of vegetables in Warwickshire.

Known for his passion and originality, chef Cenci is a proud supporter of local British ingredients, which he uses in the modern dishes he creates for the sustainable and seasonal menus offered at Duck & Waffle.

Cenci says he continually strives to push the culinary boundaries with his eclectic and exciting menus, having worked alongside some of the greatest and most respected chefs in the industry, including Herbert Berger, Joel Robuchon and Julian Owen-Mold.

Dr. Rupy Aujla

Next up will be Dr Rupy Aujla, who is also the LPS Show Ambassador this year. Dr. Aujla is the founder of The Doctor’s Kitchen, a project he devised to inspire his patients about the medicinal effects of eating well by sharing recipes and clinical research.

“As a doctor, I see the effects of poor dietary and lifestyle choices every day,” Dr. Aujla explains. “I got so many questions about nutrition whilst working as a general practitioner that I plucked up the courage to get behind a camera and literally show my patients how to get phenomenal ingredients onto their plate. I’m just a straight-talking doctor giving healthy eating inspiration.”

Dr. Aujla is recognised as one of the most exciting new names on the health food scene; rising to the forefront of the ‘Culinary Medicine’ movement in the UK. He’s a firm believer in the power of food in medicine, and believes our plates can be as powerful as pills.

In the Chef Demonstration Kitchen, Dr. Aujla will demonstrate one of the 100 healthy recipes from his debut cookbook The Doctor’s Kitchen, which largely focuses on plant-based meals that feature plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables.

Carlos Martinez

After that, Spanish chef Carlos Martinez will demonstrate a unique recipe featuring fresh fruits from Colombia, which will be provided by LPS18 show sponsor ProColombia.

Martinez is currently Group Head Chef for Chucs Restaurants, a collection of four restaurants and cafés serving Italian favourites in sophisticated settings across London.

Martinez is also responsible for the menus served at private members’ health clubs KX and KXU in Chelsea, London, and was previously the head chef at Maze by Gordon Ramsay.

Robert Ortiz 

Later in the afternoon, the Peru Trade & Investment Office in London will provide a range of vibrant and nutritious Peruvian ‘superfoods’ for London-based Peruvian chef Robert Ortiz to demonstrate their versatility of use in modern cuisine.

Ortiz is well placed to share his expertise and passion for Peruvian ingredients as the current Executive Chef at London restaurants LIMA Fitzrovia and LIMA Floral, which are renowned for showcasing contemporary Peruvian cuisine and cooking styles. In 2013, LIMA Fitzrovia was the first Peruvian restaurant to receive a Michelin star.

Peruvian food is continuing to grow in popularity in the UK, with more Peruvian restaurants opening their doors to eager diners. As part of its efforts to promote the usage of Peruvian food in the UK, the Trade Commission of Peru in London recently launched a Super Foods Peru campaign, including a Peru Young Chef of the Year competition and initiatives to promote Peruvian quinoa and avocados.

At The London Produce Show, chef Ortiz will prepare a bespoke recipe featuring Peruvian superfoods such as avocados, pomegranates and quinoa, among others. 

Dipna Anand

Rounding off the day will be celebrity chef Dipna Anand, who is currently on a mission to teach the UK how to cook ‘real Indian food’ with her TV show Dip In Kitchen, alongside running her own School of Indian Cookery in West London, and guest lecturing at The University of West London on the subject of Indian cooking.

Recently, Anand launched a brand-new Indian casual dining concept in Fulham, London, that specialises in Punjabi cuisine and showcases some of Dipna’s grandfather’s recipes that date back more than 65 years. The venture follows in the successful footsteps of Indian eatery Brilliant Restaurant in Southall, London, of which Anand is the co-owner.

Anand is also the brand chef for the Punjabi food range offered by Restaurant Associates, which forms part of the Compass group. On the back of that, currently Anand is on the brink of creating her own ready meals range, as well as gearing up to launch her second cookbook this summer, following her debut recipe book ‘Beyond Brilliant’.

The Chef Demonstration Kitchen takes place on Thursday 7 June.

Register here to attend The London Produce Show and Conference 2018.

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