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Chef

From top professional chefs to trainees and home cooks, Canadian pure maple syrup makes a great store cupboard staple.

Blog
Interview: David Everitt-Matthias
Interview: David Everitt-Matthias

David and his wife Helen have have been running Le Champignon Sauvage in Cheltenham since 1987. In that time they have been quietly amassing a range of accolades including two Michelin stars, which they have held since 2000.

A woman and the sugarbush: a love story
A woman and the sugarbush: a love story

The women of Québec who love maple go into the forest to take sap from the trees and turn it into delicious maple syrup, butter, taffy and even cotton candy.

Canadian Maple Sour, anyone?
Canadian Maple Sour, anyone?

We fell in love on Valentine’s Day – with this great cocktail recipe from the team at 64 Degrees restaurant in Brighton (www.64degrees.co.uk).

Meet the Pro

Lee Desanges

Former UCB student Lee Desanges has been cooking up a street food storm with Baked in Brick, a converted Mini which features both a wood-fired pizza oven and a charcoal-fired barbecue which sits where the engine would usually be. In 2016 Lee scooped the title of Best of the Best at the British Street Food Awards in Birmingham.

Q&A

Q. Why did you become a chef – and where did you train?

A. I was inspired by cooking with my dad on a Sunday. He was a keen cook and we used to spend a lot of time together in the kitchen. It is how we bonded. I went on to train in professional cookery at University College Birmingham.

Q. What advice would you give to a trainee chef?

A. Be prepared to work hard – but do what you love.

Q. You are allowed to select four famous people, living or dead, to join you for dinner. Who are they? And where would you go?

A. Jessica Alba, Gordon Ramsay, John Legend and Kiefer Sutherland. We would go to a cabin in the woods with an open fire and a spit. We would spit roast a shoulder of lamb, cook roast potatoes in the fat dripping off the meat, maybe have a salsa verde, and drink craft beer and a nice red wine.

Q. What is your favourite dish to cook – and why?

A. Definitely a good Sunday dinner. It has to be beef rump cap with all the trimmings – roast potatoes, cauliflower cheese, smashed swede, sweet corn and a rich red wine gravy. It reminds me of my mum’s cooking.

Q. Why do you like cooking with pure Canadian maple syrup?

A. I love the Dark maple syrup with IPA beer in a BBQ sauce, using paprika I smoke over oak. The sauce is lovely. The maple syrup brings out sweet, deep, slightly liquorice notes. It’s really interesting.

Q. What is the best meal you have ever eaten?

A. Sunday lunch at Cheal’s of Henley in Warwickshire. I trained with Matt Cheal, the chef director, at University College Birmingham and it is great to see how he has progressed in his career. I had a four-course menu with the main part being beef. Even though the two previous courses and dessert were fine-dine in style, the beef was meant to be a traditional Sunday lunch but it took Sunday lunch to a new level.

Maple Products

Maple Vinegar
Maple Vinegar

A sweet-sour vinegar made by fermenting maple sap and aging it in oak with a blend of cinnamon, cloves, pepper, thyme and spices.

Maple Water
Maple Water

100% pure and natural maple water is also known as maple sap and gets its authentic, fresh and delicately sweet flavour from Quebec’s majestic sugar maple trees. Ensure it’s always NAPSI-certified.

Maple Butter
Maple Butter

When you continue to boil maple syrup and stir it until it reaches a buttery consistency, it turns into a maple spread. Delicious on toast, bagels, crumpets and muffins.

Maple Syrup
Maple Syrup

Quebec bulk maple syrup producers are the only one in the world to have their products tasted and classified by a third party, giving a guarantee of authentic experience, taste and grading. There are four grades of 100% pure Canadian maple syrup. Varied, subtle and delicious, they’re a pleasure to explore!