A Stornoway guest house proprietor shared his culinary skills yesterday, (Wednesday 30 January) demonstrating and sampling dishes using local ingredients.
Roddy and Catherine Afrin have owned Park Guest House, Stornoway for 21 years and it was here that Roddy prepared Hebridean favourites from starter to dessert, demonstrating his passion for food.
The event follows the success of the first B&B My Guest meeting at Braighe House, organised by Who Cares Wins as part of their programme to increase and develop the skills and experiences of B&Bs and guesthouses in the area.
The business support programme promotes local producers and food service providers supporting tourism in the Outer Hebrides.
Who Cares Wins is working in partnership with local businesses, like the Park Guest House and Salar Salmon to promote the use of local produce.
Customer feedback cards show this is what visitors to the islands and locals people want served up in restaurants and cafes, as it forms an important part of the dining out experience.
Twenty people from businesses across the islands had the unique opportunity to enjoy the cooking demonstration and lunch prepared using fresh local ingredients, while receiving insider tips on how to make food look as good as it tastes.
Born in Stornoway, Roddy has been in the food industry since he left school at 16, having worked in a variety of catering jobs both on and off-shore.
He particularly enjoys cooking fish, shellfish and game from their local larder and it is these very ingredients that Roddy used in signature dishes at Wednesday’s demonstration.
Allan Macritchie from Ness is the chef at The Park Guest House who helped cook up the true taste of the Hebrides using the freshest local produce.
The flaky salmon for the event was supplied by Jane Twelves of Salar Salmon and the lobster was provided by Stornoway fisherman Donald Maclennan for the ravioli starter. The pheasant main course was followed by chocolate fondant and ice-cream made with cream from the local dairy.
Roddy said: “I have always enjoyed working with food, especially with the array of excellent Scottish produce available. People seem to really enjoy these cooking demonstration sessions and it is great that we can serve up what they have seen being prepared. We love sharing our passion for food with our guests and we try to use Hebridean produce as much as possible in our menus.”
Lisa Maclean of Who Cares Wins said: “Roddy is a creative and experienced chef and this event helps to promote and develop the Outer Hebrides’
reputation as a source of excellent food. It’s such a great idea for people from local businesses to come and watch the cookery demonstrations and get together with others to learn what works to make a success of their business.”
Following the huge demand for this special event, Who Cares Wins will organise and promote cookery demonstrations and lunches throughout the islands with the next one being in Uist.
Who Cares Wins is a business support programme funded by HIE Innse Gall and supported by Comhairle nan Eilean Siar and VistScotland to encourage business excellence in customer service.