The UK’s growing taste for great produce treated simply is admirable, says Neil Rankin, but is it the best use of our chefs’ culinary skills?
After a long stretch of eight years without a single holiday (#tinyviolin) I like to get out as much as I can. There are a million places still on my to-do list, but my favourite place in the world to eat so far has been San Sebastián.
What draws me in is the uncompromised simplicity of it all and the almost universal knowledge and passion all the chefs and the locals have of the ingredients. On the whole, nothing seems played about with or forced into something it’s not supposed to be. It’s the perfect example of a place that lets the ingredients do the talking. From ceps cooked a la plancha to a perfect golden brown and served with a bright yellow egg yolk and a little salt to a plate of perfect, salty anchovies dressed only in a little oil, and a plate of roughly sliced tomatoes that almost outshine the 12-year-old dairy cow that follows. These ingredient-led cuisines around the world have enchanted an entire movement of chefs worldwide.
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