3 Feb 2014

Latest News from one of our favourite Chefs - Koj

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Cooking and eating into 2014
January can be quiet for chefs - a welcome respite after a busy Christmas. I was lucky enough to see in the New Year cooking in a pizza oven by a bushcamp beside a hippo pool in South Africa (see my blog for details). It was a fun but challenging week; first, getting to grips with some foreign produce (kudu, wildebeest, king clip, kabeljou, milk plums and flying termites), second, resetting my mind to summer menus - although it was nice to see strawberries in December.
Now back, surrounded by cold, wet weather, I am back in winter mode. I am craving satsumas and blood oranges to ward off colds and satisfying myself with comfort food such as soups and Sunday roasts with yorkshire pudding. My breakfast toad in the hole even inspired Solita in Manchester (via Twitter, of course) to add it to their brunch menu.
Cartoon: "I managed to secure Valentine's Day dinner reservations at both 4.45pm and 11.30pm"
Dinner for two - champagne, oysters, figs and chocolate (or whatever aphrodisiacs float your boat) - bespoke menu with wine pairings - £295 for two
or
Get a gang of friends together for a 3 course menu - £100 per couple (minimum 8 people)
I have written three menus for those entertaining guests during Festival week, which kicks off to the Cheltenham roar on Tuesday 11th March.
IMAGE: Ladies Day Lunch menu
Ladies Day Lunch Menu
Celeriac soup, mint and hazelnut pesto, truffle honey
Gloucester Old Spot tenderloin, crackling, pumpkin, sage, walnut chutney
Ginger crème brûlée, forced rhubarb, Anzac crumble
£35 for 3 courses
(8-16 people)
IMAGE: Champion Hurdle menu
Champion Hurdle Menu
Jerusalem artichoke soup, confit chicken, crispy leeks
Mi-cuit salmon, golden beetroot, horseradish, dill
12 hour braised beef, smoked mash, Savoy cabbage, Chantenay carrots
Pistachio and chocolate cake, blood orange sorbet
£40 for 4 courses 
(10-20 guests)
IMAGE: Gold Cup Menu
Gold Cup Menu
Pumpkin velouté, parmesan tuiles and porcini oil
Smoked duck, endive and rhubarb chutney
Salmon tartare, avocado, lime and cucumber
Rack of lamb, celeriac, chard and salmoriglio
Blood orange sorbet and gin
Chocolate and ginger mousse and almond cantucci
£55 for 6 courses
(8-16 guests)
Burns Night (second bite)
Brock Bergius of Tetbury's boutique B&B York House is returning from his world tour to address (belatedly) the 'Great chieftain o the puddin' race'.
Last two places available at £85 per person for tasting menu with wines paired by David Almeida of the Oxford Wine Company. Menu available at kojcooks.co.uk
Corporate website
I have added new pages to my website, especially for corporate clients looking for inspiration for client entertaining and teambuilding events.
Please visit my website for for more details:
IMAGE: Private chef in South Africa
Read my blog about cooking in South Africa, with a video created by one of the guests, photos and menus.
As well as lunches, dinners and corporate events, I also offer a full private chef service. For more details on this service, please visit my website kojcooks.co.uk
Recipes new and old
I shall mostly be cooking...
  • Blood oranges and dark chocolate
  • Satsumas and yoghurt
  • Hake and kale
  • Venison and cavolo nero
  • Duck and forced rhubarb
  • Haggis and swede
  • John Dory and purple sprouting broccoli
IMAGE
Amuse bouche: Flaked mackerel, ginger pickled cucumber and horseradish
IMAGE
Starter: Turkey, sage and onion salad with potato skin crisps and savoury granola
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Dessert: Mango and passionfruit pavlova cheesecake
Humble by Nature
I held the first of my cookery courses at Humble by Nature in December - Koj's Christmas Treats - where we made mincemeat and Christmas stuffing as well as homemade gifts such as chocolate truffles and cinnamon shortbread. I also kicked off our new series of pop up dinners last weekend with Burns Supper.
Upcoming courses include knife skills for vegetables, fish and butchery. Pop ups include a 70s night featuring Koj's versions of prawn cocktail, chicken kiev and Black Forest Gateaux with Cherry Angel Delight. For more details, please visit www.humblebynature.com