The Chefs

Rose SykesTrish HilfertyChris GillardGerard BakerKarl Goward Mike KeenDavid Cook

Ilia Makri

Ilia Makri

Ilia comes from Greece, a country where food, cooking and entertaining is rooted in everyday life.

Her love of food started at her family home were she would cook using old family recipes. She learnt the art of filo pastry baking from her grandmother during the long summer holidays. In 1992 Ilia moved to the UK to study Electronic Systems Engineering at Essex University completing a BEng and MSc before embarking on a successful computing career in the city of London.

In 2002 Ilia decided to change direction and follow her long standing love for cooking. She graduated with merit from the prestigious Leith's Cookery School in 2003. Since then she has worked in various roles ranging from Comi Chef to Chef in well known restaurants in London as well as providing catering services for private and corporate events.

Ilia teaches privately and at The Mersea Island Cookery School and has been a regular contributor to a number of food magazines in Greece.

top

Rose Sykes

Rose has cooked in the kitchens of some of the U.K's most celebrated chefs, including Shaun Hill and Alastair Little. In 2001 to 2003 Rosie contributed regular features to the Guardian's Weekend magazine as the Kitchen Doctor. Her approach to food and cooking is simple and uncompromising and she is committed to making the best of local and seasonal ingredients. Rose has just had her first book published called The Kitchen Revolution: A Year of Time and money-Saving Recipes which has been critically acclaimed.

top

Trish Hilferty

Chris Gillard

Born and brought up in Sydney in a family of food lovers, Trish began her cooking career in the mid-1980s working in various hotel bistros. After travelling and working along Australia's east coast, Trish moved to London. Here she switched sides, learning the restaurant trade from the front of house at Braganza. Trish returned to cooking, eventually ending up at the Brackenbury with Adam Robinson. After a time back home and further travelling, she returned to London to work at The Eagle, London's first gastropub. After two and a half years there and another sojourn in Sydney, she set up the Fox Dining Room in 2001, which scooped the prestigious 'Tio Pepe London Gastro Pub of the year' award in 2005.

She has contributed to Big Flavours & Rough Edges, and Real Pub Food. Trish has also written a book called Lobster and Chips, a unique collection of comfort dishes; more than 100 recipes that have travelled and translated across a vast range of countries and cultures - each one a celebration of a fantastic food partnership - fish and potato. A perfect gastronomic marriage. She also cooks at the award winning Anchor and Hope and Great Queen Street.

top

Chris Gillard

Chris Gillard

Chris Gillard is head chef of St.John restaurant in London’s Smithfield, where he has worked for the past eight years. Founded by Chef Fergus Henderson, the restaurant is famous for it’s philosophy of ’nose to tail’ dining. The menu at St.John takes its lead from the seasons and follows a broadly English repertoire. The emphasis is in taking the finest produce and treating it simply.

Chris is responsible for the twice daily changing menu at St.John, and for the development of new dishes. Although famed for its extremities, St.John always presents a varied menu featuring game when in season, and fish in equal measure.

top

Gerard Baker

Gerard Baker

Gerard Baker is a freelance chef, writer and broadcaster who has cooked for the past 25 years in both the UK and California. An early training with Joyce Molyneux at the Carved Angel cemented his love of seasonal and local food, while more recent jobs at Chez Panisse and in the Antarctic has seen him combine his love of real fresh food with travel and new challenges.

Gerard works privately as a caterer and private chef these days, teaching at several cookery schools across the country. A regular broadcaster with Radio Four's the food programme, and a columnist with The Kitchen Garden, Gerard is also a beekeeper and a judge on the ITV1 series Rosemary Shcrager's School for Cooks.

Gerard can be contacted at gerardbaker@onetel.com, and his web site is gerardbaker.com

top

Karl Goward

Karl Goward

Karl Goward is head chef at the recently opened Drapers Arms in Islington, London.

Last year Karl set up Metfield Café at Snape in Suffolk and was previously responsible for setting up St.John Bread & Wine, St John’s sister restaurant in Spittalfields, London.

To further his restaurant experience Karl spent 2 years living in New York, working at award winning and reknowned restaurants such as ‘Prune’ in the East Village and the infamous ‘Spotted Pig’ in the West Village.

Karl’s love of fresh seasonal food and respect for British produce means that since his return to England he has worked on various consultancy projects and taught several classes with an emphasis on simple forgotten regional dishes and modern British cooking.

top

Mike Keen

Karl Goward

Mike Keen lives in the beautiful Suffolk countryside and is the owner and executive chef of Ipswich food pub The Brewery Tap and the Cult Cafe on the town's waterside.

Born in Suffolk but brought up in Nigeria and Saudi Arabia, Mike got a taste for exotic flavours and adventurous cooking at an early age.

He has explored the cuisines of four continents, working in restaurants, on cruise ships and in cocktail bars, as a chef, troubleshooter, barman, waiter and delicatessen owner.

After many years abroad Mike brought his family home to Suffolk in 2008, working at Jimmy's Farm of TV fame and as head chef at the Anchor in Walberswick, before taking on the Brewery Tap freehouse in 2009.

His globetrotting adventures mean he is skilled at working in testing environments. He has a wealth of creativity and experience to draw on when designing menus, developing new projects and planning top class events. Mike specialises in developing bespoke menus, from show-stopping canapes through to sit-down dinners. He injects theatre into his catering using a range of cooking methods including tandoor ovens, sushi conveyor belts, charcoal roasts and kebab spits.

Mike is in demand for food demos, corporate days, food festivals, product launches and culinary events worldwide. He is currently working on several exciting projects including a cookbook and several overseas appearances.

top

David Cook

Dave Cook

David Cook grew up in Sydney and started cooking at a very early age. Training and working for five years at Pier restaurant, Sydneys most awarded seafood restaurant. He then worked at MG Garage restaurant for two years with Janni Kyritsis, one of Australia's most respected chefs.

In 2003 he came to London and started cooking at Moro Restaurant where he discovered a love for Spanish, North African and Eastern Mediterranean cooking. After cooking with Sam and Sam Clark for five years as their Head chef he opened Bocca di Lupo with Jacob Kenedy and worked as his second chef for two years.

He now spends his week cooking two days at each Leila's Shop, the Tow Path Cafe and 40 Maltby St, surrounded by passionate people and some of London's best produce.

top

Please contact us for more information.

Course Dates

Greek Summer Flavours
Friday 4th August
In the 'Greek Summer Flavours' course you'll learn how to make some truly authentic dishes. With our guidance you'll make tzatziki, dolmades, spanakopita, greek salad, Moussaka and galaktoboureko.
Cooking with a twist:
Design a cupcake
Monday 14th August
Cookery lessons that combine cooking with maths and writing for children aged 9-11. The educational topics covered include: measuring, decimals, fractions, calculating time and writing instructions.
Cooking with a twist:
Build a gingerbread house or castle
Tuesday 15th August
Cookery lessons that combine cooking with maths and writing for children aged 9-11. The educational topics covered here include: calculating areas and perimeters, understanding symmetry, calculating time and story planning.
Cooking with a twist:
Pizza by the metre
Wednesday 16th August
Cookery lessons that combine cooking with maths and writing for children aged 9-11. The educational topics covered will include: fractions, pie and bar charts, working out the mode, mean and median and calculating time.
Pasta making for young chefs
Thursday 17th August
In this class aspiring young chefs, 8-12 year olds, will learn how to prepare their own pasta dough, rolling it out and shaping it into Farfalle. They will also make a simple Italian tomato sauce.
Italian for Teenagers
Friday 18th August
Aspiring young chefs, 13-17 year olds, will learn how to prepare pizza dough and turn it into dough balls or pizza and make pasta dough to make Tagliatelle with Bolognese sauce. For dessert they will make a strawberry tiramisu.
Curing and Smoking
with Mike Keen
Sunday 20th August
Learn how to make your own cured and smoked meats and fish. Mike will guide you through the process of curing, hot and cold smoking, and how to build your own smoker at home.
Introduction to Patisserie
Tuesday 5th September
In the 'Introduction to Patisserie' course, you'll learn how to create a selection of patisserie classics. During the five hour workshop, you'll make Profiteroles, Millefeuille with crème patisserie and Glazed fruit tarts.
Sushi
with Mike Keen
Wednesday 6th September
Spend the day with the lovely Mike Keen and learn how to make sushi. Mike will teach you all the skills and techniques you need to make delicious Sushi at home.
Macarons & Marshmallows
Monday 11th September
In this course, we'll make some beautifully coloured French macarons and will create some delicious marshmallows in various flavour combinations. Learn tips and tricks to introduce flavour variations giving a contemporary twist to your confectionery creations.
Flavours of the Middle East
Tuesday 12th September
Take a gastronomic journey through Turkey, Lebanon and Egypt and learn how to make some truly authentic dishes from the region. These include: Pittas , Boreks, Hummus, Baba Ganoush, Tabouleh, Ta'miyya, Kofte and Baklava.
2 day Artisan Bread Making
14th and 15th September
Learn how to enhance the flavour of your breads by using pre-ferments such as biga, poolish and sponges, how to create, look after and use sourdough starters and how to bake wholemeal, rye and enriched breads.
Introduction to Gluten Free Baking
Monday 18th September
In the 'Introduction to Gluten-free baking' course, you will learn how to make delicious gluten-free bread, pastry and cakes. This workshop includes demonstrations, instructions and guidance on how to achieve good results with gluten-free ingredients.
Healthy Family Meals
Tuesday 19th September
Focusing on good quality ingredients and home cooking techniques we'll show you how you can make nourishing and exciting meals for your family. Discover new healthy alternatives that will become part of your everyday meal repertoire.
British Breads
Monday 25th September
Taking part in the British Food Fortnight initiative, we are showing our love for British food with one of nation's most favourite foods, the bread. In this class you'll learn how to make, shape and bake a selection of British breads.
British Sausages
with Mike Keen
Tuesday 26th September
Learn how to make your own proper sausages. Mike Keen will guide you through the process of selecting the meat and spices to make and fill a selection of sausages. You'll then cook some classic British sausage dishes with a twist or two.
British Fish and Seafood
with Mike Keen
Thursday 28th September
Taking part in the British Food Fortnight initiative, we are showing our love for British fish and seafood. Mike Keen will take you through the different stages of preparing and cooking a delicious 3 course lunch, focusing on British Fish and Seafood and let you into tricks of the trade.
British Pastry and biscuits
Friday 29th September
Taking part in the British Food Fortnight initiative, we are showing our love for British food with nation's favourite pastries and biscuits. In this class you'll learn how to make a bakewell tart, Eccles cakes, shortbread and Gingernuts.
British Apples
Monday 2nd October
In this class you'll learn how to make apple crisps, apple chutney, mackerel with apples and beetroot, a casserole of apple, cider and pork, and an apple snow pudding with gingernut biscuits.
British Pies
with Mike Keen
Tuesday 3rd October
Learn how to make a selection of British pies. Mike will guide you through the process of making a delicious range of pies from hand-raised pork pie to the most delicious steak and ale pie.
Classic British Cakes
Thursday 5th October
In the 'Classic British Cakes' course, you'll learn how to bake successfully a Victoria sandwich, a Chocolate Swiss roll and Gingerbread. You will take home the cakes you have made during the workshop along with a recipe and method booklet, to remind you of what you have learnt.
Chocolate Desserts
Thursday 12th October
Build a repertoire of impressive chocolate desserts by learning how to make bitter chocolate mousse with cherry sauce, chocolate fondants with salted caramel sauce and individual rich chocolate tarts with orange and hazelnuts praline.
Seafood
Friday 13th October
In this Seafood course, you'll learn how to choose, prepare and cook different types of seafood. We'll prepare and cook dishes with prawns, scallops, clams or mussels, and calamari.
Vegetarian Autumn Flavours
Monday 16th October
Whether you are a vegetarian wanting to get some ideas for new flavours, or just looking for some great tasting alternatives to meat dishes, discover some gems from the Mediterranean and Middle East, and build an impressive vegetarian repertoire.
Introduction to Bread Making
Tuesday 17th October
In the 'Introduction to Bread Making' course, you'll learn how to make, shape and bake three different types of doughs. With these skills you'll be creating a white loaf, a Focaccia bread and delicious Chelsea buns
Pastry
Thursday 19th October
Learn the tricks and techniques to make three classic types of pastry. During the workshop, you'll make shortcrust pastry, pate sucre and flaky pastry. You'll put them to good use creating a Leek and Gruyere tart, a Salmon en Croute and a Lemon Tart.

Children's Parties

If you fancy doing something a bit different for your child's party why not try a Cooking Party?

Parties can be booked Monday-Friday 4pm-6pm.

For more information please contact us.