5 Vegan questions to Colin McGurran
Eating out with family and friends should be an enjoyable experience for all. It’s quality time together, not time to be spent worrying whether or not the venue caters for your dietary requirements.
When you visit Winteringham Fields, you can relax knowing your food is not only prepared correctly, but as much consideration has gone into the ‘free from’ recipes as any other option on the menu. As Chef Patron, Colin McGurran, explains...
1. How do you cook your veggies?
We prepare the vegetables away from meat and diary. No matter the vegetable, I take every opportunity to add flavour.
Vegetables are best eaten when they're bright, crisp and tender, so we treat each vegetable in its own way. Once the flavours are combined and presented on a plate, they compliment each other and we’re sure you’ll want to cry "this is the best carrot I’ve ever tasted!"
2. How can you cook without butter, milk and eggs?
Vegan recipes have come so far, it’s possible to cook with only vegan ingredients and still create mouth-watering food. Ingredients like almond milk, coconut oil and olive oil make great vegan substitutes for dairy products. And when mixed with a little know-how and an infusion of flavour, you’ll never know the difference.
I had a vegan customer in recently who kept calling the waiter over to double check that her meal was vegan because, in her own words, “it tastes too good!”
3. How do you turn vegetables from bland to delicious?
If you’ve ever had a bland experience with broccoli or a crunchless carrot, remember it’s not the vegetable’s fault! The real culprit is probably under- or over-cooking. There’s so much goodness in vegetables—the key is knowing how to get the best out of them.
They should be prepared, seasoned and cooked with the same care and attention that any piece of meat receives. After all, vegetables are part of the main attraction, not a side dish.
4. Where do your ingredients come from?
I’m a firm believer in using local produce. It’s better for the environment, richer in flavour and makes good economic sense. So, what better way to achieve this than growing my own vegetables and herbs? Some of the dishes on our tasting menu are averaging about 80% home production for vegetables. The team goes to the fields twice a day to harvest, so the vegetables we’re serving have often been picked no more than three hours previously.
5. Do you cater for gluten-free, coeliacs etc?
Yes, we cater for most dietary requirements, including coeliacs. We’ll always do our best to accommodate you on your visit, and if there’s a large party who all have different dietary requirements, we can cater for that too.
One of the questions we ask on booking and confirmation is 'Are there any dietary requirements?', so we can ensure all our guests enjoy the food served.