(Barré) #1 19


ollowing a 21-year stint at Gidleigh
Park, Michael Caines is now
commanding the kitchen at
Lympstone Manor, a Georgian
mansion-turned-hotel and restaurant
in Devon. With stunning scenery, an
abundance of local produce and plans to
plant a vineyard on site, it seems the chef
has made his smartest career move yet.

You’ve worked under legendary chefs
including Raymond Blanc, Bernard
Loiseau and Joël Robuchon, but who’s
been your greatest mentor?
They all played a part, and continue to
influence me, but I think it’s fair to say that
Raymond is my greatest mentor – and a
dear friend. He remains a strong, important
influence and our friendship has grown.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve
received from a fellow chef?
In my second year of college, a lecturer told
me to take criticism constructively and see
it as a way of be„ering myself.

You were named Food Magazine’s
‘Local Food Hero’ in 2016 – who are
your favourite producers?
I have a long list of food heroes, including
Pipers Farm; lamb farmer and producer,
Stuart Baker; Ma„hew Stevens; Flying Fish;
Cornish Duck Company; Wiltshire Game,
and Westcountry Cheese.
At Lympstone Manor, we’re excited about
working with Darts Farm butchers just down
the road, the Carters at Greendale Farm for
fish, Dart Fresh, Salcombe Gin, and Dappa,
who make a fantastic Devon Grappa. And
then there are the fantastic local wineries
like Lyme Bay, Totnes Sharpham Estate,
Camel Valley, and Somerset Cider Brandy.

You’re instrumental in the Exeter
Festival of South West Food and Drink

(29 April -1 May) – what are some of
2017’s highlights?
We’re looking forward to hosting all the great
chefs who are coming down – including Tom
Kerridge and Paul Ainsworth, plus a great
list of southwest chefs. A huge screen means
be„er visibility of the cooking demos, and
we’re building on previous successes with
our supplier and music line-ups.

You lost your arm in a car accident
after just two months at Gidleigh Park.
How did you overcome the challenge it
posed to your career?
Just by ge„ing stuck back into work so I
didn’t hang around feeling sorry for myself

  • that would have got me nowhere. I had an
    amazing opportunity that I was not going to
    give up for anything. At times like that, you
    simply have to chuck yourself back in at the
    deep end, so that’s what I did.

You remained at Gidleigh Park for an
impressive 21 years, so what tempted
you to move to Lympstone Manor?
Gidleigh is a family business, and I knew I
wasn’t going to take over one day. I realised
that, at my age, I have to be in control of my
own destiny. There’s always a point in your
career where you know that you need to
move on and do something for yourself.

At Gidleigh, you held on to two
Michelin stars for an impressive 18
years. Will you continue to strive to
build upon that accolade?
Absolutely; our intention is to achieve two
Michelin stars as a starting point! The
push to achieve our third star is the heart
of everything we’re doing. The success of
any business lies in ensuring you’re looking
a–er your clients and giving them what they
want. People have enjoyed my cuisine for
many years, so it would be silly for me to do
something different!


  • 150g unsalted butter

  • 150g onions, chopped

  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
    and lightly crushed

  • 500g carrots, peeled
    and finely chopped

  • 1 tsp cumin seeds

  • large pinch of Madras
    curry powder

  • 300ml chicken stock

  • 500ml water

  • 1 bouquet garni
    (parsley stalks,
    coriander stalks,
    thyme, bay leaf, celery
    and leek, tied together
    with string)

  • fresh coriander leaves

  • salt


  1. Heat the butter in a
    large saucepan set over
    medium heat, add the
    onion, garlic, carrots and
    a pinch of salt, and cook

for 5 minutes, without
allowing the vegetables
to colour.

  1. Meanwhile, set a dry
    frying pan over low heat
    and toast the cumin
    seeds. Add the toasted
    cumin and Madras
    curry powder to the
    vegetables, and cook for
    a further 2 minutes.

  2. Add the chicken stock,
    water and bouquet garni,
    and bring to the boil.
    Add a little salt, then
    reduce to a simmer and
    leave to cook slowly for
    30 minutes. Transfer to
    a blender and blend to
    a fine purée, then pass
    through a sieve and
    return to a clean pan to
    gently reheat.

  3. Season to taste
    and serve, sprinkled
    with freshly chopped
    coriander leaves.

Curried carrot soup
Serves 4

Guest_Chef_Michael_Caines_MATTZP2CathyZP.indd 19 01/04/2017 22:

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