Chef of the Week: Marcilio da Silva, Head Chef at BaxterStorey in London
How long have you worked at your current restaurant?
I’m working for BaxterStorey. I recently moved to work in a new corporate street food concept for BaxterStorey, I’ve been working here for almost 5 months.
Where did your passion for cooking come from and where did you learn your skills?
My mum – She was my inspiration to become a chef. She is a chef back home in Brazil, I grew up watching and helping her to cook. I developed my basic cooking skills to get me my first job in London.
What do you enjoy most about being a chef?
I love to cook and I love people, combine those two things together and I feel blessed. I like the challenge of the kitchen.
Name three ingredients you couldn’t cook without.
Eggs, flour and butter.
Which piece of kitchen equipment couldn’t you live without?
Rational oven and Thermomix.
What food trends are you spotting at the moment?
I love street food, I see a lot of places trying to incorporate it in their menus.
What do you think is a common mistake that lets chefs down?
Planning, everyone should always be ahead of the game, planning your menus, planning your day, planning your tasks, this helps chef to enjoy their job.
What is your favourite time of year for food, and why?
I love the spring, the variety of colours, textures and flavours you do not find at any other time of year.
Which of your dishes are you most proud of?
I produced a lot of smoked meat, I do love my smoked short ribs – Long hours of cooking at a slow heat.
How do you come up with new dishes?
Time to time I like to go visit some local street markets and see what they have available. I do a lot of research about seasonal products and follow a lot chefs on social media.
Who was your greatest influence?
My mum, she is very passionate about cooking. Also, I love the Brazilian chef, Alex Atala, the way he changed the Brazilian cuisine, we are so proud of him as chef. He is very humble and a good chef.
Tell us three chefs you admire.
I like, Alex Atala, Felipe Bronze and Massimo Bottura.
What is your favourite cookbook?
Feast by Simon Boyle – The reason I like this is that my recipe is in the book!
What’s been your favourite new restaurant opening of the last year?
I’ve been to Paradise restaurant in Soho, it is Sri Lankan elevated cuisine. The food and the service is incredibly good, the combination of the flavours and the presentation of the dishes is the best of the best.