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The Leeds Castle Food Festival

Q&A WITH JEAN-CHRISTOPHE NOVELLI

Leeds Castle Food Festival – 8th to 10th September

Jean Christophe Novelli in demo tent

What will you be demonstrating at Leeds Castle Food Festival?

My demonstrations will include mushroom gateau and ratatouille.

What do you think of the Festival; have you presented there before?

The Leeds Castle grounds are certainly a very special location. I don’t think I have presented there before so I’m absolutely delighted to have been invited this year! I do hope you will come along and have a great day with everyone.

Why is it a great day out for the family?

In addition to the wonderful historic venue, there’s such a wide variety of stalls showcasing local produce – and there are so many other attractions on offer for families.

What is your favourite dish and what are you working on?

My favourite dish is still my mum’s stuffed baked tomatoes. At the moment I am working on creating some dishes for my new restaurant, Jean-Christophe Novelli at City Quays, that will be opening in the Marriott AC in Belfast in spring 2018, and also for Don Giovanni’s – one of Manchester’s most romantic Italian restaurants. 

What has been your biggest achievement?

My biggest achievement as a chef is to retain the passion and excitement I have for cooking. 

When did you realise you wanted to become a chef?

By the early age of 8, watching my mum cook every day! And this was confirmed at the age of 14 when I started to work as a baker.

Tell us about your new book Simply Novelli. Any plans to write any more books?

Simply Novelli is full of exciting, simple and nutritious recipes that are just perfect for families. With regards to more books, I am working on something but I’ve been tied up for a while so I’m just getting back on the boil with this.

Tell us about the Academy? You have a new one-day course Pleasures from Land and Sea?

Voted amongst the top 25 cookery schools in the world, the Academy offers a range of one-day courses that are very interactive and full of information. A day at the Academy is the perfect fun day for everyone and one of the best gifts you can offer to anyone you love! Like many of my courses, Pleasures from Land and Sea includes good, traditional recipes with an amazing healthy twist.

What are your plans for the future?

Well, in between festivals and courses at my cookery school, I will be hosting some events at Don Giovanni’s in Manchester and also working very closely with Marriott Hotels, Interstate and the Belfast Harbour Commissioners on the planning of my new restaurant in Belfast. In addition, I also want to expand the space at my cookery school so I can host larger corporate groups at my home.

Food Fest 09.09.16 001 credit Leeds Castle

Visit www.insidekentmagazine.co.uk for Jean Christophe’s recipe for ratatouille.

If you would like to book a course at the Novelli Academy, or buy a Gift Voucher for someone, please use the Promotional Code FESTIVAL20* to receive a 20% discount. *For a limited time only.

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