Dishy chef Gino D’Acampo dishes up dessert!

Italian chef Gino D’Acampo is a familiar face on TV – he was king of the jungle after appearing on I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here and regularly takes to the This Morning Kitchen to whip up something scrumptious. We had a chat to him about the temperament of a chef and what he makes to seduce a lady – we even got him to part with a recipe!

After Italian, what is your favourite cuisine ?

“I like all cuisines but let me tell you which one I don’t like – the French cuisine. There is too much butter, cream and I think their technique is incorrect.

“Fusion is good if it is done sensibly, I don’t like it when it is done for the sake of it. I had Thai and Italian fusion last week and I thought it was amazing. It was a little bit spicy – a kind of a Thai soup served with a veal Milanese, it worked beautifully.”

Who cooks in your house?

“My wife Jessica cooks at home. She makes a baked farfalle with béchamel sauce and smoked salmon and that is my favourite meals that she makes.”

Does your wife feel any pressure when cooking for you?

“Always because I can’t eat without saying anything. Poor thing she always cooks for me and has dinner ready on time and puts a lot of effort in but unfortunately I have this bad habit of saying things like, ‘don’t you think this should have a little more salt’.”

How does she take that then?

“Well it depends of course on her mood and where the moon is. If she is in a good mood she doesn’t answer back, and just gets on with her stuff but if she is in a bad mood I probably get a couple of smacks on the back of the head! She hasn’t poured  food over my head though as she knows that I would get annoyed if my clothes get dirty. I don’t complain though I just give her some constructive criticism.”

What is your essential piece of equipment in the kitchen?

“The dishwasher! I have all the kitchen gadgets and they are important like having a good knife, or a chopping board but I can do without them. If I don’t have a chopping board I use the bench top, If I don’t have a good knife I survive with a bad one and it takes a bit longer but I’ll tell you what I can’t do, washing-up! I don’t want to do it so my dishwasher is the most important item in the kitchen for me and I look after her and I make sure she is fine.

“I think I have the best method for packing the dishwasher. My wife thinks wrongly and the nanny thinks she has the best way but I still believe I have the best packing method!”

Is there a room in the house that you escape to, to unwind?

“Well it is not the kitchen – that is the hub of the house, the kids running around, the wife on the phone to her friends. I have a covered swimming pool in a chalet thing in the back of the garden and that is where I go and lock myself in. I have a television, a radio, a sofa and my gym, so I do everything there and the water relaxes me. The kids know they are not allowed to come and bother me when I go there.”

What is the worst thing about being a chef?

“The problem that I have is that very rarely do I get invited to dinner by friends, as they are scared to cook for me which is silly. I know cooking is my profession but if David Beckham invites me to play football, I will go and play with him. Just cook for me what you do best. If that is boiled eggs on toast, do that, I love boiled eggs and I love toast. You don’t have to impress me, it’s nice just to be invited. I don’t go for the food I go for the company.”

[He takes a serious but tongue in cheek tone] “If anything comes from this interview it should be that my friends know that I would like to be invited around more for dinner. I never get invited out for dinner, never [he pouts] which is sad. Lets do a campaign an invite Gino to dinner campaign and then I will pick one every six months and go around and have a dinner.”

What are your seduction techniques?

“Food is the easiest one for me. It has to be sweet, and has to be something that is messy, something like ice-cream is perfect. It starts with something that is eventually going to melt and that is the ultimate in sexy food I think.”

Gino has designed four new recipes based on Wall’s and Carte D’Or favourites. For more information visit www.walls.co.uk.

Gino’s Pasticcio di Viennetta (Viennetta mess)

Serves 4

Ingredients:

200g Wall’s Viennetta Vanilla

800g fresh ripe strawberries
1 tablespoon icing sugar, sifted

200g thick Greek-style yoghurt
6 ready made plain meringues

Preparation:

Wash and dry the strawberries, remove any green bits. If they are large, cut in half.

Place 600g of strawberries in a large bowl. Dust with icing sugar, gently mix and chill for an hour.

Place the remaining 200g of strawberries in a food processor and blitz into a purée, adding a dash of liqueur to taste, and chill.

Cut the Wall’s Viennetta into 1cm cubes and place into a large bowl, fold in the yoghurt, and chill.

Roughly crush the meringues into bite-sized pieces and set aside.

When you are ready to serve, gently toss the Viennetta, meringue and strawberries together.

Divide the lot between 4 tall dessert glasses.

Drizzle over the strawberry purée.

Miss B

Miss B

Miss B is a Belle About Town who likes to bring a little bit of style into every aspect of her life. An experienced journalist with over a decade in the industry she turned to the web to fill a gap for tech-savvy stylish women who want the best life has to offer at their fingertips. She loves a decadent cocktail bar, a beautifully cut dress, the perfect pair of heels, quality over quantity and is partial to Asian-fusion food, enjoys holidaying in the sun and shopping breaks to New York. But her first love is of course London!

    



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