I always shop in supermarkets – I go to Waitrose about three times a week and I buy plastic bags every time. It’s very bad. I drink soya milk and I love fresh fruit – I go crazy for a pear. I always have eggs and flour at home so I can make my own pasta. Until I met my Italian wife I didn’t realise how easy it is, you can do it in five minutes.
At 7am for breakfast I’ll have a smoothie with a spoonful of peanut butter. For lunch I have sliced cured meats – I absolutely love pata negra ham – some cheese, some pickled veg from the deli counter. Cheddar’s the best cheese.
For dinner I love a good steak. Steak, steak, steak! Talk to your butcher and get a popeseye, the bit that goes round the cow’s bum. It’s beautiful and butchers normally save it for themselves. My other big splurges are fish, shellfish and quality white burgundy wines.
My cupboards are also full of protein bars because I’ve got a sweet tooth. I go to the gym a lot and those bars give you all the sweetness but none of the fat.
But some stuff is not worth spending extra on. Posh salt? Most stupid thing I’ve ever heard. Salt is salt. And the silliest thing I’ve ever seen in shops is tomatoes on a vine. Can you get a tomato that doesn’t come on a vine?
I don’t do a weekly shop – if I want something I’ll go and buy it. I don’t buy huge quantities of stuff in one go because I get a bit dizzy in the supermarket, I feel like I can’t see anything and I go a bit weird.
But my kitchen cupboards are full of so, so much stuff. There’s a whole Asia section with Korean ingredients and then an Italian section with about nine different types of flour and then I’ve got corn pasta, rigatoni and fusilli in different shapes and sizes and nine different types of rice.
Bacon, onions and eggs are my shop staples. I buy bacon from the butcher’s and on the weekends I might have eggs and bacon and if the kids want pancakes I’ll make them. I’m a gluten-free bread man – I usually make it myself – and I like a bit of ham on toast. I try and eat five or six times a day, small meals rather than big ones.
I think we should spend more money on meat and fish – we should eat less of it but spend more money on it. Animals are extraordinary things and if you’re going to be a carnivore I think you’ve got to pay the money for it. I’m not a cheapskate man – I’m not a fan of cheap food, I want something that will be sustainable and something that feels right.
MasterChef begins on Wednesday 29 March at 8pm on BBC1
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