We’ve had a few iconic restaurateurs who’ve named The River Cafe in London a favorite. Somehow we are convinced this is partially due to the delicious force of legendary chef April Bloomfield. Bloomfield reigned as sous chef there until getting plucked out of the culinary woodwork by partner Ken Friedman, and Mario Batali. Since then, Bloomfield has been at the forefront of the cities’ most exciting restaurants; The Spotted Pig, The Breslin, and The John Dory Oyster Bar. The chef has always expressed a love for the hot and cold in food; in a sense her restaurants portray just that. Her venues manage to exude a casual pub feel while also staying on the cutting edge of epicurean curiousity.
When one thinks of Bloomfield, the pig inevitably comes to mind. This chef has undoubtedly changed the way New York both views and eats pork. With the onset of her book release on April 10th, we couldn’t think of a better way to start off the month. A Girl and her Pig covers Bloomfield’s rise from modest English roots to the apex of the culinary industry, showcasing numerous delicious recipes from all her restaurants. The book’s cover hosts Bloomfield with a pig slung over her back – an image both natural and fitting to the English Chef. Whether you’ve delved into her chicken liver toast at The Spotted Pig, or savored her chorizo-stuffed squid at The John Dory Oyster Bar, you’ll appreciate this Epicurean’s Questionnaire from the ultimate Epicurean.
Describe your ideal food day…
My ideal food day would be a Sunday that starts with English Breakfast mid-morning, followed by some old movies and a nap, copious amounts of tea and roast chicken with mashed potatoes and veggies.
What’s your drink?
IPA, a good Old Fashioned, or a nice Gin and Tonic.
What would your last meal be?
Either roast beef or pork with two kinds of potatoes: some roasted in hot duck fat and some mashed ones. Also, some boiled carrots tossed in butter and caramelized Brussels sprouts with butter.
How do you start your day?
In bed with a nice cup of tea and a cookbook or my iPad.
Favorite place to travel for food?
Any country or city that has a deep culture revolving around food. I love San Francisco but I just went to Norway and Denmark. That was pretty amazing.
The place you’d like to travel for food, that you haven’t been to yet…
My, there are many. Thailand, Vietnam and India.
What ingredient do you consider overrated?
Lobster can be overrated.
What ingredient are you convinced makes everything better?
Can I have a few? Chili, anchovies and acidity, like lemons, limes and vinegar.
Your afternoon snack…
Usually tea and a sandwich.
What’s always in your fridge?
Cheese, salami, butter and jam.
Favorite night of the week, and why?
I don’t think I have one.
What are your vices?
Biscuits and chocolate, I can devour a whole packet without thinking.
Is there anything, that’s at all your restaurants, that screams “April?”
Most definitely. Check out the answer to question number 8!
Your go-to recipe when eating in…
Pasta Amatriciana. It’s nice and spicy with good, cured pig face.
And most importantly, how do you feel about New potatoes?
I love New Potatoes! There’s nothing better than when they are dug straight from the ground with mud still on them; their skins are so tender. In England, we have this potato called Jersey Royals and they only come around in the spring. Boil them in plenty of salt and mint, then drain and toss with plenty of butter!