Chef of the Week: Nathan Sidebottom, Head Chef at The White Hart in Lydgate, Greater Manchester

How long have you worked at your current restaurant?
I’ve worked at The White Hart now for 6 years, but 10 years all together.

Where did your passion for cooking come from and where did you learn your skills?
My passion came from family being in the industry themselves and baking with my grandma on a Sunday morning, I would say I mostly leant my skills through 2 Michelin star Daniel Clifford where I worked for 2.5 years at midsummer house.

What do you enjoy most about being a chef?
The thing I enjoy the most is putting back into the industry what’s it given me, helping younger generation progress.

Name three ingredients you couldn’t cook without.
Thyme, lemon juice and salt.

Which piece of kitchen equipment couldn’t you live without?
Kitchen equipment I couldn’t live without would be a good set of sharp pastry cutters.

What food trends are you spotting at the moment?
I’m spotting a lot more relaxed, casual dining restaurants coming onto the scene. 

What do you think is a common mistake that lets chefs down?
Younger chefs thinking they’re better than they are, be a sponge, and write things down and listen to the seniors around you, because you will soon get really good.

What is your favourite time of year for food, and why?
I would say I’ve got two favourite seasons, the first being spring, when you start to smell the wild garlic coming through, then autumn when we’ve got all the earthy flavours coming through.

Which of your dishes are you most proud of?
The dishes I’m most proud of would probably be a monkfish Wellington or my take on an apple and blackberry crumble which is de-constructed.

How do you come up with new dishes?
Read a lot of cook books and I like to eat out.

Tell us three chefs you admire.
Three chefs I admire would have to be Daniel Clifford, Clare Smyth and Thomas Keller.

What is your favourite cookbook?
My favourite cook book is probably Eleven Madison Park.

Who do you think are the chefs to watch over the next few months?