Sabrina Ghayour, chef, food-writer and author
The cookbook that has most influenced your cooking
Genuinely I couldn’t pick one because I take inspiration from so many books, people and things that I can’t attribute it to a single book
The food of love: what would you cook to impress a potential date?
I’ve done some crazy meals in the past and made my life terribly complicated. My belief these days is great ingredients, treated simply but with love are always the way forward. Also nothing that is ridiculously messy or difficult to eat
The perfect dinner party: which five people (dead or alive, real or fictional)would you invite to dinner and what would you cook for them?
Oscar Wilde, Jim Morrison, Stephen Fry, Elizabeth Taylor, Frank Sinatra… that’d make quite a party. Not sure I’d need to cook, perhaps just stack the bar as much as possible… if I did cook, it would have to be decadent, caviar, lobster, superb seafood and case after case of champagne
Fast food – your top snack tip
Always keep feta in your fridge for toasties, salads, pasta and instant gratification at your fingertips. Pretty brilliant when baked, too
Most memorable meal in film/literature/painting
Does the fridge scene in 9 & 1/2 weeks count? I do love the fantasy of Alice in Wonderland’s Mad Hatters Tea Party
Your worst kitchen disaster
Last Christmas, I cremated a Goose, which I served for dinner, 5 hours too late alongside under-cooked roast potatoes, burnt cabbage, something mildly resembling gravy and miraculously well-cooked parsnips. Alcohol **may** have been involved in the sabotage of the evening’s success
The best thing to do with a tin of chickpeas?
Use half the water and make hummus with some tahini, lemon juice and garlic
What would you like your final meal to be?
Grilled seafood on a beach somewhere like Thailand, with lots of sweet, salty, hot and sour sauces for dipping and fresh coconuts (and Dom Perignon) for sipping
What is your secret talent [in or out of the kitchen]?
Ha ha ha a lady never tells… mostly because then it wouldn’t be a secret. But I can tell you, I’m a pretty decent behind the bar, too and make some really good cocktails not just food
What did you eat for breakfast?
Oh god, today it was turkey slices with Sriracha sauce. Yes, I know that sounds terrible but high protein diet happening at present. Ordinarily I mostly like toast and yes, the dreaded avocado with it, that I’ve been eating long before it became trendy
What’s in your fridge?
Everything, anything, every single item ones heart could desire, craving-wise. Because I’m always recipe testing and cooking, my fridge is absolute chaos. Cheese, chocolate, deli meats, vegetables, drinks, meat, you name it
Your inheritance recipes – the one you inherited [and from whom] and the one you’d like to pass on to your children
I didn’t inherit any, I’m a self taught cook through and through… and I don’t have children but if I did, they’d get given a copy of each of my books. Much easier, isn’t it?
Bazaar by Sabrina Ghayour is published by Mitchell Beazley, £26, octopusbooks.co.uk
Photo credit: Kris Kirkham