There's only 1 way to celebrate your 50th - with Masterchef Finalist Steven Lickley!

Did I mention it was my birthday on Sunday?  Only about 50 times (once for every year of my life) so if you missed it you must have been asleep!

So, finally, I reached the great milestone that is 50! Plus I have been a chef for approximately 30 years and in business, for approximately 20 years which means in total, I should really have been celebrating 100 years (sadly I didn’t get my card from Her Majesty)!

Such a special occasion definitely demands more than one celebration! Part one was a very special dinner with my chef friends, hosted at fifty seven and cooked by 2018 MasterChef The Professionals Finalist, Steven Lickley and it really was superb.

I met Steven earlier in the year when I dined at a charity supper club to raise money for The Brathay Trust, the charity MasterChef semi-finalist Matt Campbell was supporting when he sadly died during the 2018 London Marathon at 22.5 miles.  Matt had hoped to raise £2,500 however since his death over £380,000 has been raised in his honour.

At the charity, plant based dinner, I bid in the auction for Steven to cook dinner for 4 and won.   After a little negotiation Steven agreed to double the number of guests he would cook for if I doubled the bid.  I did and he did and that’s how we got to Friday night!

As I said at the start, I have been a chef for approx. 30 years and it was incredibly hard to choose 7 people who work daily on the cook line that a) had a Friday night off and b) could drink enough to keep up with my celebrations!  Somehow I managed to find a motley crew and we had such a lovely evening.

The menu was totally left to Steven with the only requests being that he use seasonal and sustainable ingredients.  To Vegan or not to Vegan was up to him and he did us all proud and apart from me, no one knew what was being served until the night – a bit like a pop-up supper club – we just sat down and enjoyed amazing food and fine wine.

The menu opened with Variations of Artichoke which were truly loved by all.  The textures and flavours were incredible as well as the presentation of course.

The main course for others was a Cod Loin with Baba Ghanoush and Cauliflower.  Honestly, I didn’t have the Cod but the Vegan option was, I can assure everyone absolutely delicious.

Dessert was totally Vegan but you’d never have guessed it! A Dark Chocolate Mousse made with silken Tofu, with burnt oranges, pistachio, coffee and so much more.  At this point, I was unsure if I could actually eat any more but I struggled on, took one for the team and managed to clean my plate!

Steven’s partner Emma looked after us all so well and at the end of the evening, both Steven and Emma joined us for more wine and great conversation.

I had an incredible evening and can’t thank Steven and Emma enough for their hard work, and my chef friends who all managed to get a well earned night off work and were able to be spoilt for once!

Watch this space for a collaboration seeing both Steven and Emma returning to Dulwich to host some pretty special events at fifty seven!


p.s. If you are interested in coming to fifty seven for dinner with MasterChef finalist Steven Lickley then please do email us.  There will be a priority list for those that get in touch.