Step back in history with Regula Ysewijn’s Miss Food Wise. Originally from Belgium, Regula has a passion for all things British, turning back the clock to re-create dishes of yesteryear.
Describe your cooking style in three words: Honest. Historical. Wholesome.
What’s your signature dish? I find it hard to associate just one dish with myself. It could be the Beetroot Cured Salmon everyone likes so much, or the puddings I bake in winter, or the traditional Belgian mussels friends request especially when they visit. Ask me this question again in ten years time, by then, maybe I can tell you my signature dish.
What do you think is the most underrated ingredient? Freshly milled black pepper. Last year I received a set of single origin peppercorns, when I started to taste them, a whole new world of flavors opened to me. Pepper is not just pepper, it lifts up any dish and can be wonderfully floral, sprinkled over strawberries, as well as warming in tea and an all-round favorite to spice meat and vegetables.
What’s the best cooking advice you’ve ever received? Cook from the heart. I learned to cook from watching Jamie Oliver on his Naked Chef series when I was a teen. He made it look so easy and relaxed. Before I found cookery books and recipes daunting, I loved to just throw things together and see if it matched. Jamie Oliver did the same, just taste and combine. To this day, this is how I will cook during the week, without a recipe, just the fridge to give me clues on where to go. In the weekends, I use historical cookery books to recreate dishes from times gone by, very intriguing to taste the food of our ancestors.
If you could share a meal with anyone in history who would it be? That would be my favorite female cookery writer Agnes Marshall, she lived during Victorian times and not only is she responsible for the first written recipe for an ice cream cone, she also invented a lot of cooking appliances, like the ice-cream maker, ice caves and many other inventive things.
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