Great British Menu 2018 chefs - Andrew Sheridan, Wales heat

The  Staff Canteen

Meet the Great British Menu 2018 chefs from Wales: Andrew Sheridan

This year Andrew Sheridan from Sosban, takes on Chris Harrod and Jason Hughes in a bid to make it through to the Great British Menu 2018 banquet which celebrates 70 years of the National Health Service. This year’s brief is to create celebratory and heartfelt dishes in tribute to the heroic staff of the NHS.

andrew sheridan 2
Andrew Sheridan

Andrew Sheridan is Executive Head Chef at Sosban, Llanelli, he joined the 80-cover restaurant in South West Wales, in October 2017. Aged just 30, Andrew has an impressive track record having worked alongside Michael Caines at ABode in Chester where is rose from a junior role in the brasserie kitchen to sous chef in the fine dining restaurant. 

Along the way he has also been North West Chef of the Year (2011) and a semi-finalist in BBC Young Chef of the Year (2005).

Born in Liverpool, Andrew mainly grew up in Wales and built his career there, hopping just over the border to ABode Chester for a few years, before returning to Wales as Head chef at the River Room at the Bodnant Welsh Food Centre in North Wales. 

Why did you want to be involved in Great British Menu?

I have always loved the programme and it was a chance to show off my food and skills as a chef. 

This years’ theme is celebrating the 70th anniversary of the NHS – how easy was it for you to come up with dishes to be served at the anniversary banquet?

It wasn’t easy! It was a tough brief this year. It was only when I started thinking about the dishes and the history of the NHS that I realised I also had a strong family connection in the NHS my great-grandmother, Rebecca Mulligan, who was born in 1894 in Omagh Northern Ireland

Rebecca moved to England in 1914, she was 20 years old to train as a nurse. She finished her training at Mill Road Hospital in Liverpool where she went on to work as a midwife. She married in 1926, aged 30 becoming Rebecca Onions. She had two children and dedicated herself to bringing them up - one of her favourite family dishes was rice pudding which inspired my Great British Menu dishes “Nurse Onions Rice Pudding”.

What does the NHS mean to you and how rewarding is it to possibly cook your food for these incredible individuals?

The NHS means a lot to me not only because of the incredible work that all the staff do, but also, because my great grandmother. During the Second World War, Rebecca returned to nursing and carried on working as a Sister at Stapley Hospital in Liverpool until the grand age of 82! A true life-time’s service to the NHS!

How difficult is it to cook in the Great British Menu kitchen alongside other chefs?

The pressure is so intense but also incredibly rewarding! I met some amazing people and it has also made me release how far I have come in my career.

What was the best part about being on Great British Menu?

All of it! It was one of the hardest things I have ever done and the most enjoyable. 

Were there any negative parts to being on Great British Menu?

No negatives it was rewarding and an amazing experience.

How did you find the criticism and being judged?

I took the criticism well, it's all a learning curve and it makes you a better chef.

Were you more nervous about being judged by the veteran chef or the judges?

Being judged by the chefs. It’s such a critical profession and when you have spent months creating dishes, you just hope people enjoy them. Especially the chefs you are against and being judged by.

Do you have any standout memories during your time on Great British Menu?

Yes, the high score my veteran judge gave me for my dessert!

Would you take part in Great British Menu again?

100% yes, I loved it!

Would you encourage your peers, colleagues and chef friends to take part in a competition like Great British Menu?

Yes , It’s an experience they will never forget.

 

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The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 13th September 2018

Great British Menu 2018 chefs - Andrew Sheridan, Wales heat