JACK STEIN LEADS CORNISH SEASONAL SPUDS INITIATIVE
PUBLISHED: 15:12 21 June 2016 | UPDATED: 12:40 30 August 2017
Executive chef Jack Stein is leading the charge to encourage UK consumers to fall back in love with potatoes, in a UK wide initiative launched to coincide with the arrival of our first mainland UK crops of new season potatoes.
Cornish new potatoes, which will be in supermarkets across the country from June until August, are a highlight of the seasonal calendar with their renowned sweet flavour and thin skins, which do not need to be peeled.
Jack Stein, executive chef of the Rick Stein Restaurant Group, which employs 550 people across its 12 restaurants in the South and South West of England, grew up in Cornwall and is understandably passionate about the county’s native produce and seasonality of ingredients.
“The very early crops of Cornish potatoes are so sweet and have a slight salinity because they are grown very close to the sea. You almost don’t need to season these potatoes. All the flavour is just under the skin so you get a lovely earthy flavour and the essence of the best parts of the potato in one hit,” he said.
“Growing up in Cornwall, I am passionate about its produce and it seems ridiculous to say it now but I remember when my parents Rick and Jill opened their first restaurant in the 80s, they had no choice but to use seasonal produce because there simply was nothing else.
“Now we do have an enormous amount of choice in the ingredients we can use, but it’s so important not to miss out on the wonderful flavours of truly seasonal produce available in the UK – the first asparagus, spring lamb, watercress – these are the things I look forward to as a chef but also as a consumer.
“I’ve grown up with seasonal produce and it’s very important for the home cook too – no matter what you educate yourself in – whether its books, or music or food – the greatest reward is the enjoyment which comes from that knowledge,” added Jack.
Jack has developed six new Cornish potato recipes to inspire and excite British cooks to serve up delicious new potatoes as an alternative to standard varieties or even competition from other carbohydrates like rice and pasta.
“Potatoes are a vital carbohydrate and are incredibly healthy, gluten free, fat free and full of vitamins,” said Jack.
“But most importantly served simply with a knob of butter, they are the most delicious ingredient and so incredibly versatile.
“I am delighted to be leading this campaign to encourage people to eat Cornish and hope that I can inspire people with my recipes,” continued Jack.
Recipes are all available on