Blog: Cyrus Todiwala – British Produce at Café Spice Namasté
Cyrus Todiwala has long been a tremendous supporter of Love British Food from its early days and has led the involvement of Indian restaurants in British Food Fortnight by running wonderful menus – all sourced with local named produce – in his fabulous restaurant in the City of London. For those who ask “Is British food all about Shepherds Pie and Apple Crumble?” we say “No! It is about the huge variety of superb British produce used as ingredients in dishes of all sorts that reflect Britain’s varied cultural heritage.” And Cyrus’s restaurant, where the menu lists all the producers of the ingredients used in his delicious Indian dishes, is the perfect illustration of this.
Cyrus Todiwala, celebrity television chef and founder of Café Spice Namasté believes that buying British produce is the key to restaurant success. The menu at his London restaurant blends traditional Indian and classical French culinary techniques with ingredients sourced in Britain. The result of this modern fusion is a totally unique experience.
Cyrus believes that buying quality meats and fresh vegetables from the UK is instrumental to the way the menu is created. Sourcing produce from the UK often means working seasonally with what is available from each supplier. The menu therefore is constantly evolving throughout the year and makes it more interesting for our regular customers. This extract from the May-June menu highlights the focus on quality British food.
CHALK STREAM TROUT IN HONEY, MUSTARD AND GINGER
Trout bred probably in the purest waters in Britain, from the Chalk streams in Hampshire and bearing a product that is some of the finest anywhere in the world. Marinated as above and chargrilled in a tandoor.
(Good Fats and Omega 3)
Café Spice Namasté has recently teamed up with Nutritionist Edi Csanalosi to adapt their dishes every month to suit a different theme. This extract of May-June’s menu focuses on brain foods, good fats, good carbs, protein and zinc. The trout in this dish is from Hampshire and it is very visible on the menu where lots of the produce comes from.
As well as promoting British produce in his own restaurant, Cyrus is an Ambassador for the Rare Breeds Survival Trust and a Patron of the British Lop Pig Society as well as being an Ambassador for Scottish Food & Drink as well as British Lamb. He is convinced that here in the UK we have some of the best meats in the world, partly due to the regulations in farming. Stamps of approval such as Red Tractor gives people the assurance that what they are buying is good quality. This is of criticial important when sourcing produce for restaurants and when shopping for the home. Cyrus also chooses to cook with sustainable and organic food where possible in Café Spice Namasté.
Cyrus is renowned for his promotion of British and sustainable food and has been recognised with numerous awards. He was made an MBE for services to the restaurant and catering industry in 2000 and he was appointed an OBE in 2010.
Alongside Café Spice Namasté, Cyrus has established Mr Todiwala’s Kitchen in West London and The Riverside Restaurant by Cyrus in Goa. He has also created a range of pickles and chutneys called Mr Todiwala’s that are for sale in his restaurants and online.
More information about Cyrus and his recipes can be found in any of his five cookbooks: The Café Spice Cookbook, Mr Todiwala’s Spice Book, Mr Todiwala’s Bombay, The Incredible Spice Men and Indian Summer.