Farmer cooks with TV chef

A FARMER from Sandon cooked alongside celebrity chef Gordon Ramsey to raise awareness of British produce for Channel 4 s The F Word programme. Ben Cannon, of Hyde Hall Farm, who produces and sells his own meat, travelled to a central London restaurant for

A FARMER from Sandon cooked alongside celebrity chef Gordon Ramsey to raise awareness of British produce for Channel 4's The F Word programme.

Ben Cannon, of Hyde Hall Farm, who produces and sells his own meat, travelled to a central London restaurant for a screen test for the second series of the culinary programme.

With the help of farmers from Barkway, Odsey and Cambridge, Ben had to cook three courses for 50 guests after spending eight hours preparing the food.

He said: "Gordon Ramsey is a perfectionist, so we got sworn at a lot. We had to co-ordinate everything and make sure timings were right. When we got onto the main course we were cooking fish so there was huge potential to muck up.


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"However, we did manage to get all the courses out on time and only four out of 50 guests complained, which we were told is normal."

Although Ben and his colleagues had not got any catering experience, they were keen amateur chefs and Ben said he learned how to cook under pressure.

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"It was good fun and putting yourself outside what you would normally do was great," he said.

Ben cooked soup, lemon sole and apple tart for guests, but said his signature dish at home is curry.

He said: "I like cooking spicy food such as curries, but I also think pheasant is under-rated.

"It's a cheap meat and versatile and a lot cheaper than chicken. I like using it in stir-frys and curries."

Ben said there was no way he would be a professional chef.

"They work long hours," he said. "Some chefs are in the kitchen until midnight."

In the first series of The F Word, Mr Ramsey played host to a range of celebrity guests including Joan Collins, Penny Lancaster and Davina McCall.

The date of the second series is yet to be confirmed.

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