Social media feeds have been bombarded by secret talents from our family, friends, and colleagues. If it’s not knitting, it’s fitness goals, home-inspired comedy and lots of home cooking.
With our favourite hotels and restaurants closed, most of us have had to whip up recipes from the memory, the Internet, and cookbooks we rarely open.
Today, we give you easy recipes you can make from home thanks to Fairmont the Norfolk's ‘King of Mashakura’, Davis Kamau.
How did you get into cooking?
At first, I had chosen the wrong career. As I struggled, my mom suggested: ‘Why don't you try cooking since you love it and you're good at it?’ That's how I landed in the kitchen.
I did a course in pastry in 2013 and later did a full chef's course. I did my internship at Fairmont the Norfolk, and got employed there from 2016 to date.
What is your favourite dish to make?
Mushroom ragout. This entails a trilogy of mushrooms which are the Portobello, Button, and Shitake mushrooms, that are sautéed in onion and garlic. Add your mushrooms then some white wine (which really brings out the flavours in the mushroom).
Add cream, Parmesan cheese (grated), fresh breadcrumbs and a touch of butter. Place your meal in a bowl (oven proof), sprinkle some grated Parmesan cheese, and fresh breadcrumbs. Place it in your oven until well golden brown. Be assured, I'm salivating as I share this.
What is it about food that gets your mind moving?
The fact that there are so many edible things out here it just a matter of playing with the flavours; like did you know rose petals are edible?
How can a home cook marry flavours to prepare a dish as good as one made in a professional kitchen?
Marrying flavours at home is very easy, it's all about ingredients. The fresher your ingredients are, the more professional your food tastes.
The first step is familiarising oneself with the ingredients available. Get to know how the ingredients smell (both fresh and stored), the texture and their origin.
And lastly, for better taste and aroma always go for fresh ingredients.
My favourite meal is honey pork shoulder served with glazed carrots and avocado mashed potatoes.
• 4lbs (12 medium) russet potatoes, peeled
• 1 1/4 cups hot milk (we used whole milk)
• 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter at room temperature (not melted)
• 1 1/2 tsp sea salt, or to taste
• 1 Tbsp fresh parsley or chives, finely chopped for garnish and one avocado
—Peel the potatoes, till soft (use a knife to test if potato's fall off its cooked).
—Place the milk on the heat, as it boils, mash the potatoes with the avocados; add the milk and the butter mix till its creamy then season to taste
—Peel two carrots and cut them into the shape of preference. Place the carrots in seasoned boiling water until half cooked. Place a pan over the heat add some butter, four punches of sugar, and two pinches of salt. Add your carrots, sauté for one minute. And they are ready to serve.
—For the pork, this comes in slices that are easily cooked on a pan. Take the two steaks; rub some salt, paprika, and black pepper on them. Place on a hot pan for three minutes, then turn to cook the other side for three minutes.
—Take a tablespoon of honey and drizzle on the pork till it’s glossy and shiny. In 45 minutes, you have a full meal. Plate it, and enjoy.