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Revelations – Aktar Islam

14 September 2011
Revelations – Aktar Islam

What was your best subject at school? PE

What do you normally have for breakfast? Cereal normally, but traditionally on a Saturday smoked salmon with eggs, and on a Sunday a fry-up

Which is your favourite restaurant? Opus and Simpson's, both in Birmingham

What's your favourite hotel? The Hilton at Trafalgar Square

What is your favourite drink? A G&T made with Tanqueray No 10

What is your favourite cuisine? Indian and modern British

What flavour combinations do you detest? Sweet and sour Chinese

Where was your last holiday? South Africa

What do you always carry with you? My knives

Which person gave you the greatest inspiration? Marco Pierre White

Which ingredient do you hate the most? Any kind of food colouring or flavour enhancers

Which person in catering have you most admired? Gordon Ramsay. I have followed him for years and to work with him [on The F Word] was a great endorsement

What daily newspaper/website do you read?The Birmingham Mail and www.thetimes.co.uk

If not yourself, who would you rather have been? Matthew Fort - he was a laugh a minute on Market Kitchen

If you had not gone into catering, where do you think you would be now? Aeronautics - it's a passion of mine

Cast away on a desert island, what luxury would you take? My electric toothbrush and hair straighteners - but, of course, that's not good if there's no electricity!

Who would be in your "fantasy" brigade? Adam Bennett and Luke Tipping, Simpson's; Andy Waters, Edmunds; David Colcombe, Opus Restaurant; Glynn Purnell, Purnell's

What's your favourite book?White Heat by Marco Pierre White

What irritates you most about the industry? The fact that the Indian sector has a lack of diversity. They are unwilling to push themselves and remain very stagnant in their product offering and business model

Aktar Islam is chef-director of the Lasan Group

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