Chef of the Week: Daniel Hyams, Head Chef at The Barley Sheaf in Gorran, Cornwall

How long have you worked at your current restaurant?
I came on board at the Barley Sheaf 10 months ago in the head chef position under the ownership of Tim Kendall.

Where did your passion for cooking come from and where did you learn your skills?
My career started at a young age I have always been in love with food and the trade from a child in the kitchen cooking with my nan and just loving food. I studied in the midlands and the first place I really worked was a tiny little country pub called the Whitestone from there I grew my knowledge was better, and it was time to move on.

What do you enjoy most about being a chef?
I like being creative! Using all the senses and the buzz of a busy service getting ready with the team and just serving good quality food using the ingredients from around me it brings a great feeling of passion doing what I love.

Name three ingredients you couldn’t cook without.
Maldon sea salt, salted butter and thyme.

Which piece of kitchen equipment couldn’t you live without?
My kitchen equipment I couldn’t do with out is as simple as a spoon I couldn’t do anything without that tool and a thermomix brilliant piece of equipment.

What food trends are you spotting at the moment?
Food trends seem to be something which we aim for here is simple and delicious food does it taste great and is it value for money. A dish I keep seeing is pan perdu.

What do you think is a common mistake that lets chefs down?
Most common mistake is being their own worst enemy and getting inside there head when they don’t need to stand back breath and get the job done with your team.

What is your favourite time of year for food?

Which of your dishes are you most proud of?
Previously I had a confit leek dish on and for me it has hit all my briefs I wanted it to be a secret delight so from looking at you go hmmm okay doesn’t look like much but when you eat it hits all the notes, and you want another one or a sneaky lick of the plate.

How do you come up with new dishes?
Walking with my partner and the dog is often when I come up with new ones, I’m in my happy place looking at my surroundings and thinking what I could make with that forged product.

Who was your greatest influence?
For me it was most of the great chefs looking through cookbooks watching clips of them cook they all brought something that made me push and feel like I want to cook like that I want to be the best I can be.

Tell us three chefs you admire.
My choices would be Daniel Clifford, Magnus Nilsson and Chris Eden.

What is your favourite cookbook?
That’s a hard decision I have a big collection I often re read anything by Daniel Clifford his out of my tree midsummer house is an amazing book and delicious recipes.

Who do you think are the chefs to watch over the next few months
The chef for me to watch is Tim Kendall.  This is why I have come to work with him and push for someone who gives back to the chefs that work for him so this makes us want to work that much harder for him.

What’s been your favourite new restaurant opening of the last year?
For me it would be our sister property the rising sun in Altarnun as we have created two teams and brought people onboard who are as passionate as both of us are.