What have chef's been cooking with in 2016?

  • The List
  • 13 December 2016
Food Highlights of 2016

Scotland's chefs suggest their top ingredients of the year

We asked chefs and restaurateurs from Edinburgh and Glasgow for their favourite ingredient of 2016. Here are their highlights:

Gilly Macpherson, Owner of Urban Angel, Edinburgh
The chicken livers we source from Hamildean Farm near Peebles are so delicious, and also pack a nutritious punch – we make them into a simple brûlée. They are loaded with iron, folate and packed full of certain B vitamins, most notably B12 and they're a top source of vitamin A, which helps eye health. But most of all they are decadently delicious which is what Christmas food should be all about.

Mark McKenzie, Chef at The Tron Bar & Kitchen, Glasgow
Ginger is one of my all-time favourite ingredients and I've been using it in a lot of dishes this year. Its strong punchy flavour works so well with different meats, fish and also in vegetarian meals.

Daniel Mellor, Head Chef of The Observatory in The Glasshouse Hotel, Edinburgh
The abundance of heritage food such as all types of potatoes, carrots, tomatoes and wild herbs.

Martyn Dixon, Head Chef, Bisque Brasserie, Edinburgh
Smoked Leg of Lamb

Alison Simpson of the Red Bus Bistro, Edinburgh
Shichimi pepper, which I use to marinate duck and serve over some spicy noodles.

Anil Panchi of Tuk Tuk, Edinburgh and Glasgow
We use so many different ingredients, it's hard to pick a single one! But one that rings throughout is chillies, whether mild or hot! Chillies are usually associated with their spice, but they can be used lightly or heavily to enhance the flavour of our dishes.

Paul Ross & Nick Foulton of Dram & Smoke (pop-up, London and Edinburgh)
Paul: Heather honey – it's so versatile. You can use it for glazing big cuts of meat, sweetening desserts with more complexity than sugar and also for flavouring cocktails.
Nick: We recently discovered using Douglas Fir pine cones for smoking meats. It gives the meat an unbelievable taste.

Scott Parker, Chef at Steak, Edinburgh
The product that I've loved working with is our amazing Highland Wagyu meat. The marbling and flavours are just sublime.