We Grill: Lydia Bright

Simon Gage grills Lydia Bright, from The Only Way Is Essex

What dish do you remember from your childhood?

A big dish in my family is pasta as we are part Italian. My favourite dish as a child growing up was spaghetti carbonara.

If you had to pick a signature dish, what would it be and why?

My signature dish would be macaroni cheese, I forget about the calories and use five different cheeses. I follow my grandmother’s recipe, she has been cooking it for years.

What’s your best kitchen gadget?

My best kitchen gadget would be my handheld blender. I love cooking soups in the winter and this is great for blending all the vegetables.

Where do you like to eat when you eat out?

I love Prezzo, which is an Italian chain of restaurants that does amazing food and is really reasonable.

What do you usually order?

I usually order a prawn dish to start followed by a meat pasta or a fillet steak.

What are your favourite British dishes?

I would say pie, mash and liquor or shepherd’s pie are my favourites.

How do you think British cuisine stands in relation to other countries?

I would say that foreigners think British food is fish and chips and roast dinners, I don’t think our cuisine is appreciated that much in foreign countries.

Money no object- which restaurant would you go to and why?

One of Heston Blumenthal’s restaurants: I’d love to experience some of his amazing creations.

What’s the worst meal you’ve ever been served, and why?

I remember me and James once ate at a carvery in Portsmouth and it was the worst meal I have ever eaten. The meat was covered in fat and the vegetables were all mushy. We felt sick the whole way home.

What’s the funniest thing that has ever happened to you in a restaurant?

Me and my friends often eat at a local restaurant called The White Bull Brasserie. We once had a cocktail tasting evening and when one friend popped to the toilet we added lots of salt, pepper and chilli sauce to her cocktail. The look on her face was priceless! Me and the girls laughed all night.

Quick questions

Favourite alcoholic drink? Wine

Favourite non-alcoholic drink? Sparkling Water

Fine dining or free for all? Fine Dining

TV Chef’s – like them or loathe them? Love them! My faves are Jamie Oliver, Gordon Ramsay and Aldo Zilli.

Sweet or savoury? Savoury


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